Archive for May, 2012

Sutter hasn’t heard from Oilers … Flyers may address D … Kane may need help … Maple Leafs notes

  • TSN: Brent Sutter on the Oilers coaching vacancy:

    “I know him really well. But I have not had one conversation with the Oilers. We never discussed this (coaching) once over there (Helsinki at the worlds). No contact with the Oilers since I’ve been home either. They may be interested, they may not. Kevin and Steve know where I’m at.”

  • Dustin Leed via twitter: Flyers may look to address their defense this offseason, as age and injury problems are increasing.
  • Adam Jahns of the Chicago Sun-Times: The Blackhawks weren’t thrilled with Patrick Kane’s partying episodes in Madison, which some suggesting he get some help.

    “He’s obviously got some issues,” the source said. “How many more times can these things happen? It’s a much bigger thing than some photographs in a 48-hour window.”

  • Kevin McGran of the Toronto Star: The Maple Leafs could look at signing veteran goalie Tomas Vokoun or possibly trading for Roberto Luongo.

    “It’s certainly nothing we can discuss publicly,” said Burke, emerging from the league’s general managers’ meeting. “We’re trying to evaluate what we have and what we can get and go from there.”

    Burke on recently signed 25 year old Leo Komarov:

    “He’s a pain in the ass,” said Burke, who signed the winger this week. “He’s really hard to play against. He’s big and he skates and makes life miserable for people. My kind of guy.”

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The Nicklas Lidstrom fallout

Nicklas Lidstrom press conference is at 11:00 am this morning

  • Josh Cooper via twitter: “In regards to Lidstrom and Suter, if Parise doesn’t also go to Detroit, don’t see how Suter would do it. Unless they pay him a ton up front.”
  • Adrian Dater via twitter: “If you’re Ryan Suter, do you want to be the one to have to follow up a legend, to make fans forget him?”
  • Jason Gregor via twitter: “Wings could lose Lidstrom and Stuart this summer. If Suter stays in NSH he’d have to like his chances against DET now more than ever.”
  • Helene St. James of the Detroit Free Press: The Red Wings may be even more interested in possible UFA defenseman Justin Schultz now. Schultz could be the #3 free agent behind Ryan Suter and Zach Parise. The Preds and Suter are expected to meet soon. The Ducks could trade Schultz’s rights if they don’t think they can get him signed.

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Capitals and Canadiens not in rush to name coach … Yzerman on goalies … Group to look at game in August

  • Scott Burnside and Pierre LeBrun of ESPN: Capitals GM George McPhee on their coaching situation:

    “I don’t know whether it’ll be done in a few weeks or a month, six weeks,” he said. “Take our time and try and do it right.”

    Canadiens GM Marc Bergevin on their coaching situation that may happen before the draft but won’t guarantee it:

    “I continue to advance on it,” Bergevin said. “I’m getting closer to a decision but that decision has not been taken yet.

    “All the candidates I’ve met with all have elements that I like. It’s not an easy decision, that’s why I’m taking my time because I want to make the right decision.”

    The Wild will look to improve team skill through a trade or through free agent targets.

    Lightning GM Steve Yzerman on their goaltending situation:

    “We’ll explore all options and try and get something done that makes the most sense for us,” Yzerman said. “So I don’t want to really rule out anything but for various reasons there’s opportunities that may make more sense for us but until we know what all opportunities are I can’t say we’re going to do this or do that.”

  • Scott Burnside and Pierre LeBrun of ESPN: In August a group of coaches, GMs, officials and players will meet to discuss the state of the game. They’ll look at the increase amount of interference when players are entering the offensive zone. This meeting will replace the R&D camp. Some GMs are concerned about the “stifling nature of hockey this spring”:

    “Everybody would love to roll out the Edmonton Oilers or the New York Islanders of the 80′s and whatnot, but it’s virtually impossible to build that kind of a team so you try and figure out a way to be successful,” Tampa Bay GM and Hall of Famer Steve Yzerman said. “And teams have done that. There’s two different teams in the finals this year than last year. I think most people would say, hey, that’s a good thing. Next year everybody’s got hope of winning now.

    “But it’s definitely a different league. All the rule changes we made coming out of the lockout were designed to promote skill and whatnot; it hasn’t necessarily done that. It’s made a different game but it’s not necessarily about skill. The teams that compete the hardest and can stay healthy generally are going to win most of the time.”

    Canucks GM Mike Gillis:

    “There was some discussion about the style of play we’re witnessing and what’s happened, and my perspective is I want offense in the game and I want to see scoring (opportunities), and I think a lot of people feel the same way. But coaches are coaches, and they’re coaching to survive, coaching to coach another day, and they’re coaching the players they have,” Gillis said.

    The NHL will ask the AHL if they would test out the hybrid icing rule. One concept that will be discussed is rolling over penalties in a playoff series in attempt to prevent late-game nastiness.

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Lidstrom press conference tomorrow morning … Rumors of retirement

  • Detroit Red Wings:

    The Detroit Red Wings have scheduled a press conference for Thursday, May 31, 2012, beginning at 11:00 a.m. ET in the C.C. Olympia Club at Joe Louis Arena. Participants at tomorrow’s press conference will include Red Wings Executive Vice President & General Manager Ken Holland and team captain Nicklas Lidstrom.

  • Tim Wharnsby via twitter: GM Ken Holland on Lidstrom: “I’ll let him make his announcement. He’s earned that right.”
  • CapGeek via twitter: Lidstrom made $50.1 million in 7  years since the lockout. $42.5 million in the 5 years before the lockout. An estimated $99.93 million during his entire career.


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Possible landing spots for Bernier … 5 Senators that could be traded … Canadiens still deciding on new coach … Hartley meets with Flames

  • Craig Custance of ESPN: Kings goalie Jonathan Bernier will likely find himself in a different uniform next season.

    “Everybody is high on Bernier,” said an NHL scout. “There’s no question he’s been brought along nicely by L.A. I think there’s a number of teams in the NHL that need a goaltender that covet Bernier.”

    Bernier is set to earn $1.25 million next year and will be a RFA. Tampa Bay is the favorite to land Bernier. Yzerman is looking for young goalie to lead the team, and they have 2 1st round picks in this years draft. The Blue Jackets are another option, though they may be looking someone with a bit more of a track record. Roberto Luongo would be an intriguing option, but would he want to play there, especially if Rick Nash is traded? The Maple Leafs are a long shot. Bernier is not a Francois Allaire butterfly goalie. Plus the Leafs may be looking for a veteran goalie, such as Tomas Vokoun.

  • Bruce Garrioch of the Ottawa Sun: Garrioch lists 5 Senators that could be traded this offseason: 1. Nick Foligno – he’s a RFA and will get a qualifying offer, but he likely won’t sign it. 2. Sergei Gonchar – the 35 year old will make $5.5 million next year with a no-movement clause. 3. Robin Lehner – he could challenge Ben Bishop for the backup position if not moved. They weren’t that thrilled with the way he developed last year. 4. Zack Smith – could be moved due to the depth at center, especially if they are able to bring back Chris Kelly. 5. Bobby Butler – moving Butler and his $1.2 million contract may be a miracle. He only scored 6 goals in 56 games last year. If they could get a late round pick for him, they should take it. Buying him out and living with a $200,000 cap hit for the next 2 years could be an option.
  • Josh Rimer via twitter: Rimer has been told by a very solid source that the Canadiens still haven’t decided on who will be their next head coach. They are still talking to candidates. It could still be a couple weeks before they decide. Bob Hartley is a finalist with 2 or 3 others.
  • Calgary Sun: RDS’s Vincent Damphousse said that Bob Hartley has had a 2nd interview with the Flames. There have been reports that the Hartley was to be named the Canadiens new head coach. There may also been some issues with his current coaching contract according to Darrent Dreger:

    “It’s my understanding that there’s some complications with his contract over (in Europe),” Dreger told TSN Radio 990. “It’s a multi-year contract and the people in Zurich aren’t about to rip it up and say ‘Good luck.’ ”

  • David Chere via twitter: Devils lines at practice yesterday: Parise-Zajac-Zubrus; Ponikarovsky-Henrique-Kovalchuk; Elias-Josefson-Clarkson; Carter-Gionta-Bernier.
  • Adam Jahns via twitter: Blackhawks GM Stan Bowman said they have talked with Patrick Kane about the Madison incident and said they were disappointed.

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Free Agent notes on Gaustad, Gill, Tootoo, Hasek, Helenius, Karlsson, Kuba, Jackman and Zuccarello

  • Josh Cooper of the Tennessean: Predators GM David Poile confirmed that Hal Gill played the Western Conference semifinal with a fractured tibia that will need surgery. Alexander Radulov had a meniscus issue in his knee that will require surgery. On their free agents:

    “I reached out to Paul Gaustad’s agent and Hal Gill’s agent, so I’m making the calls. In terms of a more complete answer next week would probably be more of a trying to set up meetings if it’s appropriate.”

    “There’s lots of situations we have to look at. Again, on defense, a lot depends on what Ryan Suter does or doesn’t do in relation to (Jack) Hillen, (Francis) Bouillon and all those types of situations.”

    “I haven’t had a chance to talk to Jordin (Tootoo’s) agent yet. I touched base with Don Meehan once on Sergei (Kostitsyn) but haven’t gotten into anything with him yet.”

  • Damian Cristodero of the Tampa Bay Tribune: There is no chance that Dominic Hasek will play for the Lightning next season if he decides to return to the NHL. The Lightning may only offer Riku Helenius a two-way offer if he wants to return to the NHL. GM Steve Yzerman said they do have an interest in bring him back to North America.
  • Bruce Garrioch via twitter: There have been no formal talks between the Senators and Erik Karlsson, Filip Kuba or Matt Carkner yet.
  • Jeremy Rutherford of the St. Louis Post Dispatch: The Blues and defenseman Barrett Jackman met after their 2nd round loss, and plan to meet again at some point.

    “He’s a St. Louis Blue, he’s been a St. Louis Blue, this is all he knows. He’s a big part of our team. But again, this isn’t just a one-sided decision. You play a long time to get the right to see what you’re worth ……With a guy like Jacks, he has half the cards.”

    Jackman had a $3.6 million cap hit and may consider a hometown discount.

  • Katie Stang of ESPN New York: Rangers Mats Zuccarello is still deciding on what he wants to do next year. He doesn’t want to be on a 2-way contract going up and down between the AHL and NHL. He has agreed in principle to a deal with Metallurg of the KHL, though playing in the NHL is his top priority.

    “I have some opportunities. I haven’t really decided yet, but it will come soon. I’m not going to lie, there is some part of me that wants to go, but at the same time this is where I want to be,” Zuccarello said.

    “I want to be a New York Ranger. I love the players, all the guys here. The fans are unbelievable and I just love playing in New York with the team. This is where I want to be, don’t get me wrong, but I have to think about what’s best for me.”

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Blackhawks re-sign Johnny Oduya and Jamal Mayers

2:24 PM:

12:54 PM:

  • Tracey Myers via twitter: The Chicago Blackhawks have re-signed defenseman Johnny Oduya to a 3 year extension and forward Jamal Mayers to a 1 year deal.
  • Chris Boden via twitter: It’s to Boden’s understanding that Oduya took a pay cut from the $3.5 million he made last year in exchange for the 3 years.
  • Tab Bamford via twitter: Bamford thinks that with the Oduya signing, it might mean that Nik Hjalmarsson could be on the trade block between now and the draft.
  • Tab Bamford via twitter: Defenseman Shawn Lalonde’s days could be numbered as well. He has 1 year left on his entry level deal and NHL roster is full.

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Morning notes: Suter, Sens goalies, Nash, Leafs, Luongo, Brodeur, Rangers, Jets, Smyth, Devils and Canadiens

  • Josh Cooper of the Tennessean: Talks are going to happen between the Predators and Ryan Suter in the coming days. “David and I plan on talking sometime this week,” Sheehy said.
  • Bruce Garrioch of the Ottawa Sun:The Senators will try to trade Sergei Gonchar’s $5.5 million contract. Garrioch wonders if the Senators would trade either Robin Lehner or Ben Bishop if they get an offer they can’t refuse. They aren’t in a hurry to trade either goalie. The Blue Jackets, Maple Leafs, Lightning and maybe the Devils could be looking for goaltenders. They wouldn’t make a deal with a Leafs. The Lightning want to build around a young goalie. The Blue Jackets may get a goalie in a Rick Nash deal. The Senators showed some interest in Nash, but moved on after Howson asked for Mika Zibanejad, Mark Stone,  a 1st round pick and a roster player. The Sens current plan is to bring Lehner and Bishop to camp to battle it out for the backup position.
  • Louis-Andre Larivere of QMI in the Toronto Sun: The Maple Leafs receive no compensation for the losing Rick Dudley to the Canadiens, except for assurance that he won’t have any input on draft day. Burke has been pushing for teams to get compensation for losing front office employees. Burke on Roberto Luongo trade speculation:

    “There has not been significant discussion (with the Canucks) about that player,” Burke said.

  • ESPN: Video (embedding disabled) of Martin Brodeur saying he doesn’t think he’ll retire after the season.
  • Dan Rosen via twitter: Rangers Brandon Dubinsky said that he had a high ankle sprain and will need another 6-8 to be fully healed. Brandon Prust will have surgery to repair a tendon on his left ring finger. It was originally hurt in February in a fight with Zenon Konopka.
  • The Fourth Period: Re-signing Evander Kane and Ondrej Pavelec are priorities for the Jets. They will also have to decide on Kyle Wellwood, Jim Slater, Tim Stapleton, Tanner Glass, Mark Flood and Randy Jones. The Jets will be looking for some secondary scoring this offseason through trade or free agency. Possible free agent targets could be P.A. Parenteau, David Jones and Jiri Hudler.
  • Jim Matheson of the Edmonton Journal: Ryan Smyth’s agent will be talking with the Oilers this week. The Oilers have already offered a 2 year contract. Matheson thinks the Oilers could be offering in the $2.5-$2.75 million per season range, and Smyth could be looking for $3 million plus. Smyth hasn’t said much other than he doesn’t want to take a big pay cut from his $4.5 million salary he had last season.
  • Rich Chere of the Star-Ledger: The Devils haven’t decided yet if they’ll forfeit this years 1st round draft pick for it’s cap circumvention on Ilya Kovalchuk’s initial contract.

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Tampering going on with Schultz? Rangers offseason … Nash trade talks to begin soon

  • James O’Brien of Pro Hockey via Michael Russo Audio: Indications are that Ducks prospect Justin Schultz won’t be signing with the Ducks. Russo said that a Ducks may look into tampering charges and could go after a “team that already has gotten to Schultz.” Russo “guesses” that Schultz already knows who he’ll sign with and it could be the Maple Leafs. Schultz was drafted by Burke and played with Jake Gardiner.
  • Larry Brooks of the NY Post: The Rangers could have $20 million in summer cap space if the cap goes up to $76 million. Henrik Lundqvist, Ryan Callahan and Dan Girardi will be UFA after 2 more seasons. The Rangers will look for a defenseman to play with Marc Staal. If the Rangers were to add a Ryan Suter or scoring help in the likes of Rick Nash or Zach Parise, they would need to get rid of a big contract or two. They will look to re-sign Martin Biron and Brandon Prust.
  • Steve Zipay of Newsday : Zipay thinks the Rangers were missing offensive creativity and skill. Management knew they needed to add scoring at the trade deadline, which is why they offered a package of Brandon Dubinsky, Tim Erixon, JT Miller and other prospects and picks for Rick Nash. The Rangers have 8 UFAs: Martin Biron, Brandon Prust, Ruslan Fedotenko, John Mitchell, Stu Bickell, John Scott, Steve Eminger and Jeff Woywitka and 3 RFAs: Michael Del Zotto, Anton Stralman, Mats Zuccarello.
  • Aaron Portzline of the Columbus Dispatch: A month of trade talks surrounding Rick Nash should begin this week, but don’t expect a final decision until late June or early July. Nash’s 5 team trade list may have now been expanded, though the Blue Jackets will move forward as if the list doesn’t exist. A deal could be done around the June 22nd draft. If he’s not traded at the draft, they may wait for the losers of the Ryan Suter and Zach Parise sweepstakes.

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Sunday morning notes: Bruins-Caps trade, Brodeur, Parise, Hasek, Setoguchi, Klefbom, Penner, Stastny, Leafs, Isles and Zuccarello

  • Jim Matheson of the Edmonton Journal: There are 4 likely scenarios for Zach Parise: He stays with the Devils, he signs with the Red Wings, he signs with the Rangers, and he signs with the Wild. The Rangers know they’d give up much less to sign Parise than trade for Rick Nash. Matheson ranks it Wings, Rangers, Devils and Wild. If the Rangers sign Parise, they may look to move Brandon Dubinsky and his $4.2 million cap hit for the next 3 years. Matheson isn’t buying the Dominik Hasek return, and that he wouldn’t come back to be a backup. Matheson thinks teams should look at sending Capitals John Carlson an offer sheet. Wild’s Devin Setoguchi may become expendable as they have some prospects coming and coach Mike Yeo wasn’t happy with his play last season. Oilers prospect Oscar Klefbom will stay in Sweden for one more year. Matheson wonders if the Wild would consider signing Dustin Penner. GM Chuck Fletcher was with Ducks on 2007. Matheson thinks the Avalanche should be offering up Paul Stastny to the Coyotes, maybe for Brandon Gormley and another piece like Mikkel Boedker.
  • Dave Feschuk of the Toronto Star: The Maple Leafs will be looking for a veteran goalie. Trading for Roberto Luongo is one option. Dave Nonis on if Dominik Hasek could be an option:

    “I think we’re looking for a veteran — I don’t know if we’re looking for that much of a veteran,”

    “We’re going to explore (acquiring a veteran goaltender) as far as we can,” Nonis said. “I don’t think you ever want to guarantee that you’re going to find something because you never know what’s going to become available. But our objective is to see what becomes available and then measure that against what we have in net at this point.”

    UFA options could be Tomas Vokoun, Scott Clemmensen, Martin Biron and Alex Auld. Through the trade market, Tim Thomas and Jonathan Bernier could be options.

  • BD Gallof via twitter: History shows that the Islanders don’t select defenseman when they pick in the top 10. 0 since 2006. Gallof expects the Islanders to draft a forward at #4 and a Dman later.
  • Mike Johnson of Sportsnet: Dave Nonis said the Maple Leafs Ben Scrivens won’t change the Leafs search for a veteran goalie, and he’d be surprised if they went with a Reimer-Scrivens combo. Nonis added: (complete audio of Nonis interview)

    “The UFA market, there are some pieces there that might be able to help (but) generally you don’t want to build your team with UFAs. Not because it’s not good players there, but you’ve got to spend more, generally, for those players,” Nonis explained.

    “For us, yes we’ll look at (unrestricted free agency), we’ll probably jump in for a couple pieces, but overall we’re going to approach the trade market as a primary source of improvement.”


Schultz hands in papers … Bolland bait? Semin done with Caps? Lightning to look at trades first … Hasek wants to return

  • Bob McKenzie via twitter: Anaheim prospect Justin Schultz has reportedly filed his paperwork to leave the University of Wisconsin. If he is leaving school, the Ducks have an exclusive 30 day window to sign him to an entry-level deal. He’d become a UFA if not signed in the next days. If he becomes a UFA, he won’t be able to sign a deal until July 1st, but is able to talk with other teams after the 30 day window. Eric Stephens of the OC Register: The Ducks still believe that they will be able to sign him. He may be able to move right into a teams top 4. If they are able to sign him, Lubomir Visnovsky could become available.
  • The Fourth Period: ESPN Chicago is reporting that the Blackhawks Dave Bolland may be interesting trade bait to upgrade their roster. He’s an excellent two-way, 3rd line center that may help fetch a 2nd line center. They could take a look at Penguins Jordan Staal. It would obviously take more than just Bolland to land Staal, possibly Brandon Saad  and 1 or 2 first round pick. The Penguins may also look at Nick Leddy or Niklas Hjalmarsson.
  • Chuck Gormley of CSN Washington: It appears Alex Semin days in a Capitals uniform are over. Translated from a Russian interview:

    “I can’t say anything concrete at this time,” he said. “I’m waiting for July 1st, until the negotiations in the NHL open, for now I am unemployed.”

    When asked if he’ll be playing in Russia or North America, he responded:

    “I can’t answer. I don’t know.”

  • Damian Cristodero of the Tampa Bay Times: Leading up to free agency, GM Steve Yzerman said he’ll take a look at the trade market.

    “My preference,” Yzerman said Thursday night, “is to go with a little bit younger guy that maybe has a little less experience that can step up and play well for us now.”

    “And if we can’t do anything in that way, we look forward to July 1,” Yzerman said of the start of unrestricted free agency.

    Tampa Bay holds the 10th and 19th over pick in this years draft. Young goalies that might be available through trade are Jonathan Bernier and Anders Lindback. A UFA target could be Josh Harding.

  • Jason Brough of the Pro Hockey Talk: New Canadiens assistant GM Rick Dudley told the Globe and Mail that if the Maple Leafs make “three moves and maybe two to become a really, really good hockey organization.” Adding an established goalie is their top need. “The whole team gets better [with good goaltending],” Dudley said. “It took me a whole lifetime in hockey to realize that. But it puts confidence in your players and makes them all better.”
  • Adrian Dater of the Denvoer Post: The Avalanche are starting talks with several of the their UFAs, though it’s not known which ones. Their UFAs include: David Jones, Jay McClement, Cody McLeod, Shane O’Brien and Matt Hunwick. They haven’t started talks with RFA Ryan O’Reilly yet.
  • Sporting News: The 47 year old Dominik Hasek is reportedly interested in returning to the NHL. His agent did not know if any negotiations are going on, but according to Hasek:

    “My agent, Ritch Winter, knows what I want,” Hasek said. “We’re working and will see how it goes, I don’t know.

    “It’ll probably be decided in June.”

  • Allan Walsh via twitter: Tomas Vokoun hasn’t accepted the KHL offer at this time, as he’s focused on playing in the NHL next season.
  • Greg Brady via twitter: Dave Nonis strongly suggested in his radio interview yesterday that the Maple Leafs won’t go with a James Reimer and Ben Scrivens tandem next season.

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Players who have taken the most elbowing penalties: 2011-12 NHL Season

There were 107 elbowing penalties called in the NHL this past season, and here is a list of the most guilty.


RK Player Team Pos
T1 Evander Kane Jets LW
Evgeni Malkin Penguins C
T3 Brad Winchester Sharks LW
Andy Sutton Oilers D
Cory Sarich Flames D
P.K. Subban Canadiens D
T.J. Galiardi Sharks LW
Trevor Lewis Kings C
Nik Antropov Jets C
Alex Burmistrov Jets C
Andrej Meszaros Flyers D
Kyle Okposo Islanders RW
Alexei Ponikarovsky Devils LW
Zbynek Michalek Penguins D
Sidney Crosby Penguins C
T16 74 Players are tied with 1 elbowing penalty
Sources: Gus Katsaros (twitter) and CBSsports.



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