Archive for December, 2012

NHL to receive counter offer this afternoon … “tweak and a fix” … Bryzgalov to see specialist

  • Darren Dreger via twitter: The NHLPA will be presenting a counter offer today. Meetings are scheduled to begin around 1-1:30.
  • Mike Brehm of USA Today: Reports that Ilya Bryzgalov was leaving CSKA because the lockout was ending are not true. His contract remains in place as he visits specialists in North America for an upper-body injury.

    “We emphasize that the medical staff CSKA enjoyed the absolute confidence of the reason for the forced departure of goalkeeper is that he has turned to overseas doctors with the same injury before and was a successful therapy,” the team said in a statement, according to Google translate.

    “We respect the work of journalists and understand the importance … (for them to be first) but encourage them … (to) rely on facts, not on rumors,” the statement said.

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Fire up the Luongo rumors again … Sharks could be in cap crunch … Bryzgalov leaves KHL … Briere injures wrist

  • Ben Kuzma of the Vancouver Pronvince: If the season starts on January 19th, and even with a $70.2 million salary cap, the Canucks may be better served to move Roberto Luongo. The Canucks need a third line center, depth on the blueline, and a backup goalie. The Toronto Maple Leafs remain the top landing spot for Luongo. Kuzma would target Tyler Bozak and RFA defenseman Cody Franson. Bozak is in the last year of his deal and has a $1.5 million salary. Franson made $800,000 last year and is currently playing in the Swedish Elite League. The Canucks would then need to find a backup a goalie. Eddie Lack should finish the season in the AHL. There are about a half dozen, affordable veteran options out there. Dan Ellis should get some consideration. Barry Brust and Marty Turco could be two other free agent options.
  • Kevin Kurz of CSN Bay Area: If there is a $60 million salary cap ceiling next season, it could mean a large escrow payment for the players. Players who would be UFA’s in 2013 may not have a lot of options. The Sharks currently have 14 players under contract for next year at $54 million. That would leave them $6 million for 9 players. One player who is not signed past this season is Ryane Clowe. Clowe will make $4 million this season, and they would like to re-sign him, but getting him at a reduced number would be difficult. Defenseman Jason Demers will be a RFA at the end of the season. If Patrick Marleau struggles for the next four months, like he did in the 2nd half 2012-13, the Sharks may look at buying his $6.9 million salary out. Martin Havlat could be another option as he’s set to make $5 million through 2014-15.
  • Dave Issac of the Courier Post: According to Sportbox.ru via google translate, Ilya Bryzgalov has broke his contract with CSKA, and is leaving the team.
  • CSN Philly: Flyers Daniel Briere injured his wrist on Friday and is expected to miss 2 to 3 weeks.

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Information and internal meetings yesterday, face-to-face today … $60 million cap issue for players … No CBJ-WIN swap

  • TSN: The NHL and NHLPA will meet today after spending most of the weekend going over the NHL’s 288 page offer. The PA met internally Sunday afternoon after having information sessions with the NHL earlier in the day. There was talk that they could meet face-to-face Sunday night, but they postponed until today. TSN’s Aaron Ward said that they could expect some players to show up in New York. Ward added that lawyers and financial staff for both sides met yesterday.
  • Gary Lawless via twitter: Lawless is hearing from the players side of things that the $60 million cap is the biggest issue. They are also looking for a 7 or 8 max term limit. Ben Kuzma via twitter: The $60 million salary cap ceiling will be a tough sell for players, even with the buyouts. Players are looking for $67 million.
  • Aaron Portzline via twitter: Bill Daly when asked if a Blue Jackets-Jets conference swap is possible: “Not being considered. Has never been considered.”

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More informational sessions today, could lead to bargaining … 2 AHLers’ suspensed … Video: sweet shootout goal

  • David Pagnotta via twitter: There is a lot of info in the NHL’s offer that the NHLPA needs to go over. It will take some time for official negotiating to get going.
  • Eric Stephens via twitter: Bill Daly last night on talks resuming this [morning], “No bargaining yet. We’ll see where it goes tomorrow.”
  • TSN: There will be at least 3 informational sessions today. Some participants will be via a conference call, others are face-to-face. Dreger noted that that the informational discussions may lead to bargaining today. No bargaining took place yesterday.
  • Tom Gulitti of the Bergon Record: Sources are saying that once the NHL season starts or is cancelled, the Devils will refinance the teams debt. Brick City LLC shares will be transferred to Jeff Vanderbeek, who will then own 94% of the team. Peter Simon will own the remaining 6%. The deal is basically done, needing just the be reviewed by NHL attorneys, who are obviously preoccupied with the lockout.
  • Joe Haggerty via twitter: Haggerty is hearing that some NHL staff have been called to their respective cities for a mid-January start.
  • AHL: Bridgeport forward Brett Gallant as suspended for 3 games for leaving the bench on an illegal line change to start an altercation. Connecticut defenseman Dylan McIlrath was suspended for 2 games for elbowing.
  • A nasty move by Mike Ratchuk in a shootout.

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Conference call this morning, possible meeting tomorrow … A January 11th drop dead date? No realignment this year

  • NHL.com: Bill Daly:

    “In light of media reports this morning, I can confirm that we delivered to the Union a new, comprehensive proposal for a successor CBA late yesterday afternoon. We are not prepared to discuss the details of our proposal at this time. We are hopeful that once the Union’s staff and negotiating committee have had an opportunity to thoroughly review and consider our new proposal, they will share it with the players. We want to be back on the ice as soon as possible.”

  • Renaud Lavoie via twitter:  The goal is to have camps open on Jan. 11th and start the season on the 18th. Source said that if a deal can’t be done by the 11th, the season will be cancelled. Another source has said that the NHL has told the NHLPA that the 11th is the drop dead date.
  • John Shannon via twitter: The NHL did mention in their proposal that Jan. 19th is the last day to play a 48 game schedule.
  • Ben Kuzma via twitter: The NHLPA has told the players to not say anything on the specifics of the NHL’s offer.
  • David Pagnotta via twitter: In the NHL’s offer, they proposed an “interview period” for unrestricted free agents. It looks like free agency could start on July 1st, with players not being able to sign until the 10th.
  • Darren Dreger via twitter: The NHL could consider “tweaks” or “trades” in their proposal, but an overhaul won’t be taken well.
  • Rob Rossi via twitter: Sense from talking with some people: the NHL feels their offer is the basis for a deal. NHLPA not sold on many parts of the deal.
  • James Mirtle via twitter: Consensus from the players conference call yesterday is that the NHL didn’t move all that much in their new proposal, but it is enough to restart talks.
  • David Pagnotta via twitter: There was talk on realignment for this season, with the Jets going to the central a the Red Wings or Blue Jackets going to the East, but an NHL executive has said that it’s “not being considered.” Daren Millard via twitter: Confirms that the Jets and Blue Jackets won’t be switching conferences this year if a deal gets done.

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Player notes involving: Seguin, Plekanec and Dubinsky

  • Aaron Portzline via twitter: Blue Jackets Brandon Dubinsky has been out since Nov. 10th with a broken finger, has returned to the ECHL’s Alaska Aces.

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NHL makes new offer to NHLPA, movement on key issues.

  • Eklund on HockeyBuzz: Reported at 3:45 this morning that the NHL made a new offer to the NHLPA that included movement on player contracts from 5 to 6 years, yearly variance from 5% to 10%, with ‘make whole’ remaining at $300 million.
  • Pierre LeBrun via twitter: There are no meetings schedule just yet between the two sides as the NHLPA needs time to go over the detailed offer.
  • Darren Dreger via twitter: “Hard to imagine the NHL’s latest proposal doesn’t result in potentially season-saving meetings. Players wanted flexibility and they got it.”

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Jamison having trouble finding investors … Briere staying in Germany … Plekanec injured … Price goes hunting

  • Helene Elliott via twitter: The NHL said it would take a “a new move or idea” to resume talks. Nothing  planned at the moment.
  • Mike Sunnucks of the Phoenix Business Journal: The City of Glendale signed an arena management lease with potential buyer, Greg Jamison. Jamison would receive $300 million over 20 from the Glendale, and he has until the end of January to complete the deal to purchase the team.
  • David Shoalts of the Globe and Mail: Jamison is having trouble finding investors to buy the Coyotes. He even tried, unsuccessfully, to find investors through “Immigrant Investor Program of the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services.” Jamison tried the EB-5 program:

    EB-5 is the official name of the visa, a conditional green card, granted by the U.S. government to wealthy immigrants in exchange for an investment of at least $1-million ($500,000 in rural or high-unemployment areas) in an American business.

    Jamison said he looked into the program, but won’t be using it to help finance the team.

    “I’ve been at this 18 months, I’ve looked at everything,” Jamison said. “I’m aware of the [EB-5] program and what it can do. We did discuss it, but we’re not using it as part of our program, no.”

  • Sarah Baicker via twitter: Danial Briere’s agent, Pat Brisson, said that Briere will remain in Germany if there is no season. He has an ‘out’ clause if a new CBA is reached. The Fourth Period: Briere’s original contract expired at the end of December. He has nine goals and 24 assists in 20 games with the Berlin Polar Bears.
  • David Pagnotta via twitter: Canadiens Tomas Plekanec may have cracked his ribs in last night’s Kladno game. He was taken to the hospital for further evaluation.
  • Tom Gulitti of the Bergon Record: Devils’ prospect Jon Merrill returned to the University of Michigan’s practice. He had been out since October 9th with a fractured vertebrae that he sustained in an exhibition game.

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Lamoriello doesn’t know why he’s not involved this time … Raymond signs overseas … Bergeron and Karlson heading home

  • L.A. Lariviere via twitter: From one source close to the negotiations: “(PA) is always available, but has heard nothing from NHL indicating interest in meeting.”
  • Rich Chere of The Star-Ledger: Devils Lou Lamoriello on the lockout:

    “I’m embarrassed for the game.”

    “It’s coming down to the wire right now,” Lamoriello said. “We’ve just got to trust the people that are involved. I’m embarrassed we are where we’re at. That’s the best expression I can use.”

    On if he thought the lockout would take this long.

    “I really didn’t know. Like everybody, I hoped not,” Lamoriello said, “but we are where we are right now and we’re getting to the 11th hour. I’m just hopeful everything can work out.”

    Lamoriello was active during negotiations in past lockouts, but not this time.

    “I’m not involved the way I was in the past. I can’t answer why,” he said.

  • The Fourth Period: The lockout will reach 108 days by January 1st. The players will have lost $775 million in salaries by then. $1.476 billion and $1.64 billion in league revenues will be lost.

    “There are no meetings scheduled,” Daly said via email. “I (still) don’t have any expectations at this point.”

  • Randy Sportak of the Calgary Sun: Flames Jiri Hudler took a skate to the neck while playing in the Czech league. Hudler was lucky as he only needed a couple stitches.
  • Matias Strozyk via twitter: Canucks Mason Raymond signed with Allsvenskan’s Orebro for 11 games. His contract starts on January 3rd and runs through February 2nd.

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Nothing Scheduled … Hishon cleared … Varlamov returns … Draft rankings and what could happen with the draft

  • Darren Dreger via twitter: There is still lots of optimism that the season will be saved in early 2013. Dreger is hopeful, but less optimistic.
  • Tim Panaccio of CSN Philly: As of the 24th, no meetings were scheduled between the NHL and NHLPA.

    “We haven’t talked about meetings later this week,” Daly said in an e-mail.  “I guess we will see.”

  • Brad Shade via twitter: Joey Hishon has been cleared to practice after being out 19 months with a concussion.
  • Bob McKenzie via twitter: McKenzie asked 10 scouts about 2013 draft eligibles. 7 have Nate MacKinnon at number 1, 3 had Seth Jones.  Top 10 rankings: 1. MacKinnon (CAN); 2. Jones (USA); 3. Aleksander Barkov (FIN); 4. Elias Lindholm (SWE); 5. Jonathan Drouin (CAN); 6. Rasmus Ristolainen (FIN); 7. Valeri Nichushkin (RUS); 8. Alex Wennberg (SWE); 9. Jacob De La Rose (SWE); 10. Linus Arnesson (SWE).
  • Jim Matheson of the Edmonton Journal: So what happens to the NHL draft if the season is cancelled?

    “Anybody who says they have a clue, they’re lying,” said Al Murray, Tampa Bay Lightning’s head of amateur scouting.

    Before the 2005 draft, the NHL held a lottery to see who would get the chance to draft Sidney Crosby. It was held 5 weeks after the normal date, and 17 days after the CBA was agreed upon. If there is no CBA during the summer, there could be no draft.

    “There can’t be a draft without a CBA. That’s one of the things collectively bargained,” said former NHL general manager Craig Button, now a draft guru for TSN.

    “The NHL could still implement a draft regardless of having no CBA, but the NHLPA could say no and then everybody’s a free agent. That would be messy. What if they say there’s a bidding situation for the junior players? It’s far-fetched and I don’t think it would happen, but …”

    If a CBA gets done after the season is cancelled, and they do look to hold a draft, they could go with a lottery like they did after the last lockout.

    “If they go on the same format for the lottery, Columbus would have five balls, three of their own and they’ve also got L.A.’s pick (for Jeff Carter) and the Rangers (for Rick Nash). They would be the overwhelming favourite,” said Button.

    The Flames, Wild, Stars, Hurricanes, Maple Leafs and Jets would each have three balls.

  • The Fouth Period: Last Friday the City of Glendale signed a lease agreement with Greg Jamison’s group, Hockey Partners LLC. Jamison now has until Jan. 31st to purchase the team.

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