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Archive for April, 2011
- Katie Carrera of the Washington Post: Capitals rookie defenseman John Carlson collided with Nate Thompson late in the 2nd period. He lasted about 36 seconds on 2 very short shifts in the 3rd before leaving for good. He’ll be listed as day-to-day, and Bruce Boudreau is hoping he’ll be able to go on Sunday.
- Joe Smith of the St. Petersburg Times: Lightning forward Simon Gagne likely suffered a concussion in the 1st period after his head slammed against the ice after a Scott Hannon hit. Gagne has a history of concussions. Defenseman Pavel Kubina also left the game. His head banged off the glass after taking a Jason Chimera hit, who received a roughing penalty.
- Sam Carchidi of the Philadelphia Inquirer: The Flyers will likely go with 6 defense in Game 1 (had been going with 7 due to the uncertainty of Chris Pronger’s hand). Defenseman Danny Syvret will likely be a healthy scratch. Jody Shelley or rookie Zac Rinaldo will be on the 4th line. Jeff Carter is doubtful for the first 2 games of the series. Andreas Nodl practiced but won’t go in Game 1. Sergei Bobrovsky will backup Brian Boucher as Michael Leighton still has a sore back.
- George Richards of the Miami Herald: The Panthers have had some contract discussions with 2010 1st round draft pick, Erik Gudbranson, “but there’s no deadline. We don’t have to have him signed right now. There are more pressing issues.” They’ve also had one “general” discussion with Tomas Vokoun people, so there is chance that he may not leave by free agency.
- Tim Sassone of the Daily Herald: There is a small group of Blackhawk fans who think they should trade Patrick Kane. (um…okay…yeah….do these people know anything about hockey? This makes absolutely no sense and isn’t going to happen. It doesn’t deserve to be even posted, but I did it anyways as it’s pretty funny.)
- Mike Heika of the Dallas Morning News: Two sources confirmed that Tom Gaglardi is in the 30-day negotiation window to purchase the Dallas Stars. Gaglardi’s offer is “significantly” better than the other offers. If everything goes to plan, the deal could be done by June. This could be helpful in giving the Stars an opportunity to have some serious negotiations with Brad Richards (though Richards may want to test the free agent market anyways). It would also allow them to get their new head coach in place. Possible candidates are Texas Stars coach Glen Gulutzan or Canadiens assistand coach Kirk Muller (in yesterday’s post and in that article we/they said that Kirk Muller will likely get the job).
Crosby confirms setback … Markov wants 3 years … Canadiens off-season notes … Knuble and Wideman update
- Will DePaoli via twitter: Penguins center Sidney Crosby confirms that he suffered a setback last week, and that he suffered a concussion at the Winter Classic. Crosby also believes that the Victor Hedman hit gave him his 2nd concussion in 5 days.
- Tony Marinaro via twitter: Back in March, the Canadiens offered Andrei Markov a 1 year deal for $5.75 million. Markov is looking for a 3 year deal, Canadiens offering 1.
- Pat Hickey of the Montreal Gazette: Canadiens assistant coach Kirk Muller will become the head coach of the Dallas Stars, but it’s on hold as the team awaits new owners. GM Pierre Gautier will make UFA Andrei Markov and RFA Josh Gorges priorities. Hal Gill is also a UFA and will likely be back along side PK Subban. Scott Gomez carries a $7.37 million cap hit next year and they have the option of biting the bullet and sending him to the AHL. RFA Max Pacioretty is healthy and is in line for a multi-year contract. Andrei Kostitsyn and Benoit Pouliot are RFA’s and likely won’t be priorities. Due to salary cap constraints they likely won’t be a major player in the free agent market.
- Katie Carrera of the Washington Post: Capitals Mike Knuble and Dennis Wideman remain optimistic that they’ll be able to return to the lineup at some point during this series.
“I think that’s very realistic,” said Knuble, who started to take hard shots in practice. “When that’s going to be I don’t know. There are a lot of factors. And so it kind of depends on how everything is going. If they keep winning, you don’t want to upset the boat. But at the same time I’m anxious to get back in. I’ll get back in as soon as I can. It’s tough to watch, but at the same time it’s fun to watch.”
“The range of motion is getting better, the skating is getting better, just gotta get in shape. Get a little more power in the leg and hopefully make a comeback shortly,” Wideman said. “We did a little skate there at the end. I mean, I’m still not 100 percent but it’s definitely a whole lot closer than it was a couple days ago.”
- Katie Carrera via twitter: Wideman and Knuble did skate today but not on with the regulars. Tom Poti not on the ice for 2nd straight day
- Ian Mendes via twitter: Jeff Carter wasn’t on the ice for the Flyers morning practice.
Zetterberg and Franzen to return … Possible new Ducks for next season … Miller had concussion … Leighton, Nodl and Carter are day-to-day
Ted Kulfan of the Detroit News: With Henrik Zetterberg and Johan Franzen returning from injuries, 2 players will have to be scratched. Mike Modano will likely be a healthy scratch. Kris Draper could be another possibility. Jiri Hudler has played well of late and may keep his spot in the lineup.
Mark Whicker of the OC Register: They list possible players the Ducks may go after this off-season; Joel Ward (Nash), Max Talbot (Pit), Vern Fiddler (Pho), Eric Belanger (Pho), Ville Leino (Phi), Kevin Bieksa (Van), Eric Cole (Car), Alex Tanguay (Cal), Sean Bergenheim (TB), Craig Adams (Pit), Michal Handzus (LA), Mike Rupp (Pit), Patrick Maroon (Phil).
John Vogl of the Buffalo News: Sabres goalie Ryan Miller admitted that his late season injury was a concussion. Vogl’s article also has audio from Miller talking about the season, the future, and their goaltending situation.
John Vogl of the Buffalo News: With the new ownership in Buffalo, they may able to go the free agent route to improve this off-season, normally it would have had to been through trade. The Sabres need help at center and on the blueline. They need help down the middle.
Bucky Gleason of the Buffalo News: Gleason wonders if the Sabres will bring Brad Boyes back, he had a good regular season after he came over from St. Louis but struggled in the playoffs. They need help down the middle. Gleason wonders if they could trade away some young prospects for say a Patrick Sharp? Evgeni Malkin? or maybe Danny Briere?
Frank Seravalli via twitter: Flyers goalie Michael Leighton is day-to-day with a lower-body injury. Andreas Nodl and Jeff Carter are also listed as day-to-day.
Kariya to play a part in Selanne’s decision … Off-season notes on the Blackhawks, Kings and Canadiens
- JP Hoornstra of the InsideSocal: Paul Kariya could play a part in Teemu Selanne’s plan to play another season or not. Selanne has said he wants to know if Kariya would come back to Anaheim if he decides to play next year. “Obviously all the years that I had with Paul, it was just unbelievable,” Selanne said. “I talked to him yesterday and we’re going to meet next week. We didn’t even talk about injuries yet but I want to talk to him about how he’s doing, what he’s thinking and maybe go surf with him.”
If he retires, Selanne said he would be at peace his career ending now. “I think so,” he said. “I tried to play like I left everything there. That’s how you should play anyway, every season. You can’t just win the Stanley Cup every year. That would be awesome, but it doesn’t work like that. I really believe we had enough tools to go further, but we lost.”
If he comes back, it will be in Anaheim. “I haven’t thought about having a chance to go somewhere else,” he said. “This is my place for sure.”
- Tim Sassone of the Daily Herald: Despite being knocked out by the Canucks in the first round, there isn’t a lot of holes to fill in the Blackhawks lineup. One area they need to add is size and sandpaper. They have to make decisions on RFAs Troy Brouwer, Viktor Stalberg, Chris Campoli and Jake Dowell, either to re-sign or use as trade bait. Re-signing RFA’s Cory Crawford and Michal Frolik is a priority. Ryan Johnson may be only UFA to return (if the price is right) out of a group of Tomas Kopecky, Marty Turco, Fernando Pisani and Jordan Hendry. Kopecky may have priced himself out of Chicago’s plans, he made $1.2 million this past season. The Blackhawks could look at dealing one of their “big-ticket players”, possibly Niklas Hjalmarsson and his $3.5 million cap hit.
- Helene Elliott of the LA Times: The Kings think that Dustin Penner needs to improve his conditioning for next season. Winger Justin Williams needs to decide if he wants to have surgery on his shoulder or not. GM Lombardi has to decide if he wants Michal Handzus and Alexei Ponikarovsky back, coach Murray does. They must also re-sign RFA’s Drew Doughty, Wayne Simmonds, Trevor Lewis, Brad Richardson, Alec Martinez and Oscar Moller. Moller’s future with the Kings may not be bright as he scratched for Scott Parse who had been out for 5 months. Lombardi on Doughty, “Part of this is do we go short term with Doughty for now and keep it down or try and go long-term.”
- Dave Stubbs of the Montreal Gazette: The Canadiens blueline could have a different look next year as they have 6 UFA’s. Who of Andrei Markov, Roman Hamrlik, James Wisniewski, Brent Sopel and Hal Gill will be back?
Coyotes staying, Thrashers moving to Winnipeg? Carter close to returning … Gillis fined … Kings Murray wants Handzus and Ponikarovsky back
- Darren Dreger via twitter: “Ongoing negotiations to keep the NHL in Glendale. Atlanta is quickly becoming a real option for Wpg next season.” Will DePaoli via twitter: If the ‘Thrashers’ go to the Western Conference, there is chatter that the NHL wants to move the Red Wings to the Eastern Conference.
- Paul Turenne of the Winnipeg Sun: Winnipeg Mayor Sam Katz said today that he doesn’t believe that the Phoenix Coyotes are heading to Winnipeg, and that they should start looking at another franchises. “Katz said his belief is based on his knowledge of contractual obligations the team holds in Arizona, which if broken, could result in legal action.”
- TSN.ca: Sources are saying that Atlanta is waiting for the fate of Coyotes to be determined. If the Coyotes are going to stay in Phoenix, there is a chance that the Thrashers will start talking with True North (group interested in purchasing Coyotes) and move them to Winnipeg. The source added that when it comes to relocation, there isn’t anywhere to go. If the deal with the NHL/Glendale/Hulsizer falls through, they’ll look at moving the Coyotes to Winnipeg and work at keeping the Thrashers in Atlanta. They hope to have the Phoenix situation resolved by the end of next week.
- Sam Carchidi of the Philadelphia Inquirer: Flyers forward Jeff Carter is getting closer to returning and GM Paul Holgren is optimistic that Carter could play in the Eastern Conference Finals.
- Helene Elliott via twitter: Kings Terry Murray says that he wants UFA’s Michal Handzus and Alexei Ponikarovsky to return next year. Dennis Bernstein via twitter: Dennis isn’t buying this. Handzus and Ponikarovsky would only return at fractional money. Likely at center next year are Kopitar, Schenn, Stoll, Lewis.
- Darren Dreger via twitter: Canucks GM Mike Gillis was fined an undisclosed, significant amount of money for his comments regarding officiating before Game 7.
- Mike Harrington of the Buffalo News: Sabres forward Jason Pominville suffered a leg gash in Game 5 that sliced a tendon, he’ll be sidelined 4-6 months. Tim Connolly’s undisclosed injury would have kept him out at least 6 weeks.
- Rich Chere of the Star-Ledger: Lou Lamoriello says that he wants to keep defenseman Andy Greene. If Greene were to receive the right offer he’d forgo free agency and re-sign with the club. “This is the choice. This is where I want to be,” Greene told The Star-Ledger today. “If there is an offer there that is good and I felt was right, I’d definitely take it. I’m not dragging my feet waiting for July 1st. We’ll let it play out.” Greene has spoken to Lamorielle but no offer has been made yet.
- Jack Todd of Faceoff.com: Todd thinks that Hal Gill is such a calming factor for PK Subban, they have to bring him back on another 1 year contract.
Stars close to getting a new owner … Big off-season questions for Ducks … Dubinsky wants a deal ASAP … Erat ready to return
- David Shoalts of the Globe and Mail: Tom Gaglardi is getting closer owning the Dallas Stars as he’s agreed to a price and most of the terms. Gaglardi “will soon enter an exclusive negotiating period of roughly 30 days to complete the purchase of the NHL team and a 50-per-cent share of American Airlines Center. The last hurdle, according to a source familiar with the sale who requested anonymity because the deal is not official, is taking the Stars through bankruptcy court so Gaglardi will not be hampered by any debts left by current owner Tom Hicks.” Though no one is saying what the price for the team and half-interest in the arena is, but it could be in the $250 million range.
- David Pollak of the San Jose Mercury News: Though it’s not official, it could be Vancouver-Nashville starting on Thrusday. San Jose-Detroit would then likely be Friday and Sunday.
- The Globe and Mail: Two of the Ducks biggest off-season questions will be if Teemu Selanne will return next year and if Jonas Hiller can get over vertigo? “I’ve got to be honest, it was so much fun this year, and that’s all I ask,” Selanne said. “It’s not about goals or points. I just want to enjoy this every day. I try to play like I left everything out there, but you can’t just win the Stanley Cup every year.” Lubomir Visnovsky was playing through a serious shoulder injury during the playoffs. GM Bob Murray added, “The decisions this summer are different than just getting players,” Murray said. “The purpose here is, can we win with this core group? That’s what I’ve got to figure out.” Selanne said that he talked to Paul Kariya, who’s fully healthy, but isn’t sure if he wants to return to an NHL that has had so many head issues this year.
- Peter Botte of the NY Daily News: Rangers center Brandon Dubinsky is an RFA and coming off a 2 year, $3.75 million deal. “I’d like to get it done as quickly as possible,” Dubinsky said Monday at the team’s practice facility in Greenburgh. “I think the Rangers want me, and I want the Rangers, so at the end of the day we might as well not waste each other’s time and draw it out as long as it was (two years ago). The sooner it’s done, the sooner I can focus on putting all my energy and efforts to this organization.”
- Dmitry Chesnokov via twitter: Ilya Bryzgalov won’t be suiting up for Russia at the World Championship as Evgeni Nabokov was given the #1 job, Bryzgalov didn’t want another role.
- Katie Carrera of the Washington Post: Capitals Mike Knuble and Dennis Wideman were in full pads at yesterday mornings practice. Knuble stayed on the ice with teammates for the practice, Wideman left after 15 minutes due to feeling lightheaded. Knuble wasn’t assigned a line at practice and is still not sure when he’ll return. “There’s a fine line between coming back and helping and coming back and hurting a team,” Knuble continued. “That’s my main concern, is that you wanna come back and you don’t wanna have to worry about contributing all the time, but just not hindering what’s going on.”
- Ted Kulfan of the Detroit News: Red Wings coach Mike Babcock isn’t worried about Johan Franzen’s ankle injury, even if he missed another practice earlier this week. Henrik Zetterberg has taken part in 2 practices recently.
- Bryan Mullen of the Tennessean: Predators forward Martin Erat practiced with the team yesterday for the first time since suffering an upper-body injury in Game 4 versus the Ducks. Erat would have been able to go in Game 7 if the Ducks had extended the series.
- Dmitry Chesnokov via twitter: Former NHLer Donald Brashear is going to give MMA a try, he has a deal to try cage-fighting in June at ‘Ringside 11′ at the Quebec Coliseum.
Bickell out 6-8 weeks … Roy may not be back … Rangers notes … Nabokov to World’s to increase value … Kings could be in on Richards
- The Globe and Mail: Blackhawks winger Bryan Bickell will be out for the remainder of the season after having surgery to repair a lacerated tendon he suffered in Game 2. He’ll be out 6-8 weeks. “While the surgery was anticipated since the injury occurred, Bryan wanted to play as long as possible before time ran out to complete the procedure appropriately,” Blackhawks team physician Dr. Michael Terry said in a release Monday.
- Jerry Sullivan of the Buffalo News: Sabres coach Lindy Ruff backtracked a bit when it comes to Derek Roy’s status for Game 7, “I don’t even know if he’s playing yet,” Ruff said when asked what he expected from Roy tonight. “So I don’t know what to expect.”
- Jeff Klein of NY Times: It sounds like Rangers coach John Tortorella may not see much of future for Chris Drury, Vinny Prospal and Sean Avery, “Tortorella said that Drury and Prospal were “getting older.” Of Avery he said, “I don’t know where it sits.” Tortorella added that the Rangers would “explore all avenues” to give Marian Gaborik some scoring help, presumably Brad Richards. Drury missed 58 games this season, had 5 points, and has a $7 million cap hit next year. “You have to make decisions on what’s best for the organization,” Tortorella said. “This is something honestly we have to look at as far as where does he fit now.”
- Larry Brooks of the NY Post: Brooks thinks the Rangers need to bring in some “talented impact players” to take the team to the next level. They have a good core with Callahan, Dubinsky and Staal. “The time, though, is coming when the Rangers will have to consider packaging three young assets for one young, All-Star caliber player either in need of a change or who might have a contract issue. Three from Column B for one from Column A. That’s not a maybe.” Henrik Lundqvist will also be turning 30, “To be a great team, when you have an opportunity, you need to grab it. And when you’re older you really need to grab it because you don’t know when there’s another opportunity.”There is a risk/reward for bringing in Brad Richards on a longer term deal as he is 31 and coming off a concussion.
- Pierre LeBrun of ESPN: The Islanders “tolled” Evgeni Nabokov’s contract, and will allow him to play in the World Championships, and if he has a good tournament the Isles could put him on the trading block. The LA Kings could be a serious player for Brad Richards on July 1st. Richards and Joe Nieuwendyk did meet last week, but with the ownership still up in the air it’s looking likely he’ll be testing the market. The Kings didn’t give much thought to starting Jonathan Bernier on Saturday over Jonathan Quick, as they may have been concerned with the emotional damage that might have occurred if they lost while he was on the bench. Ron MacLean pointed out how much it affected Cary Price a few years ago in the follow season. Kyle Wellwood has played well in San Jose, and they may consider bringing him back.
Richards not suspended for hit on Connolly … Norris finalists announced … Roy in for Game 7 … Boucher to start Game 7… Kaberle responds to Chiarelli’s comments
- Norris finalists are Zdeno Chara, Nicklas Lidstrom and Shea Weber.
- Nick Kypreos via twitter: Flyers center Mike Richards won’t be suspended for his hit from behind on Sabres Tim Connolly.
- Sam Carchidi via twitter: Tim Connolly will be out for Game 7, Derek Roy is in. Mike Harrington of the Buffalo News: “Tim’s not doing very good,” said Sabres coach Lindy Ruff. “That’s something the league definitely has to take a look at. It’s a lack of respect for another player on the ice. It’s from behind. It’s head first. That’s a tough play. We lost a good player.”
- Sam Carchidi via twitter: Carchidi thinks that if Brian Boucher needs to be replaced in Game 7 it should be by Sergei Bobrovsky. Mike Harrington of the Buffalo News: “Brian Boucher will start Game Seven,” Laviolette said.
- Katie Carrera via twitter: Capitals defenseman Dennis Wideman skated in full pad today for the first time since suffering his leg hematoma.
- Katie Carrera via twitter: According to coach Bruce Boudreau there is no timetable on when Mike Knuble or Dennis Wideman will be back in the lineup. Mike Green isn’t on the ice today but is ‘okay.’
- Joe McDonald of ESPN Boston: Bruins defenseman Tomas Kaberle responded to GM Peter Chiarelli’s “disappointment” comments,
“I always put a lot of pressure on myself,” Kaberle said, “and hopefully I can prove why I am here. I would like to help out in every little thing I can do on the ice. Obviously I’m one of the guys on the [power play] and it would be nice to get something going there.
“The first couple of games I could have been better. The last few games I felt a lot better and I’m feeling better confidence-wise, so I’ll take it from there.”
At the time of the trade, Chiarelli and Kaberle’s agent, Rick Curran, agreed to put off contract talks until the off-season. There has been no communication between the two sides since then. Curran didn’t think Chiarelli’s comments were a concern for future talks. Kaberle has been paired with stay-at-home defenseman Adam McQuaid lately.
- Tom Gulitti of the Bergon Record: Parise says he’s interested in staying in NJ, enjoys his teammates and has fun play there. He hasn’t talked to his agents about contract details.
- Mike Richards hit on Tim Connolly
Schneider left due to cramp … NY Rangers have some off-season decisions to make … Malkin back before Crosby … Niemi to start
- Cam Cole of the Vancouver Sun: Canucks goalie Cory Schneider left with under 3 minutes to go in the 3rd period. He had to be helped off the ice after his leg cramped up.
“The cramps, he said, “I could feel coming on after the second and sure enough, on that penalty shot, I just extended my leg and it completely seized up. I felt bad making Lou go in cold in the third.”
Now the question will be, who will start game 7?
“Oh, if I would tell you who I’m going to play, would you believe me now?” said Vigneault, who said he didn’t actually lie, he just “went with the gut.”
- Iain MacIntyre of the Vancouver Sun: Canucks defenseman Sami Salo lasted only 3 shifts last night with an undisclosed injury. Aaron Rome or Keith Ballard could replace him for Game 7.
- Jesse Spector of the NY Daily News: The NY Rangers have 7 RFA’s to deal with this off-season. Forwards, Brandon Dubinsky, Ryan Callahan, Artem Anisimov, and Brian Boyle. Defenseman Matt Gilroy and Michael Sauer and goalie Chad Johnson. They’ll likely want to bring back UFA Ruslan Fedotenko, and possibly Vinny Prospal. Alex Frolov likely won’t be back. Steve Eminger and Bryan McCabe are UFA’s on the backend. The Rangers will likely go after 31 year old Brad Richards. The Rangers wouldn’t confirm a report that coach John Tortorella signed a 3 year contract extension.
- Larry Brooks of the NY Post: The NY Rangers summer salary cap number is at $47.6 million, with the projected cap number of next year at $62.2 million. Their cap number doesn’t include any of their 6 RFA’s (Brooks didn’t include Chad Johnson), which should about $12 million to sign the 6. If Wade Redden doens’t retire, the Rangers will be on the hook for his contract again, and can’t remove it until they waive him in training camp. Buying out the last year of Chris Drury’s contract would save them $3,333,333 in cap space this year, but would carry a $1,666,667 in 2012-13. Wojtek Wolski carries a $3.8 million next year, and if bought out, would save them $3,333,333 next year. A Sean Avery buyout would save them $1,333,334 in cap space next year. Vinny Prospal, Bryan McCabe and Steve Eminger likely won’t be offered a contract. They won’t offer Matt Gilroy a $2.1 million qualifying offer, but are expected to give him a 2 year offer worth half that.
- Rob Rossi of the Pittsburgh Tribune-Review: Rossi has heard from someone close to the Penguins organization that he would expect to see Evgeni Malkin back in the Penguins lineup before Sidney Crosby. Malkin may be able to return if the Penguins get deep in to the playoff, Rossi asked that organization what deep meant, and “was told deep meant conference finals or Stanley Cup Final.”
- David Pollak of the San Jose Mercury News: Antti Niemi will start Game 6 for the Sharks. “Nemo will play tomorrow. He is our guy,” coach Todd McLellan said Sunday after practice. “We don’t expect him to be perfect,” McLellan said of Niemi. “We expect him to be a little bit better and I think he expects that of himself.”
- Eric Stephen of the OC Register: With the Ducks eliminated from the playoffs, questions regarding whether Teemu Selanne will retire or not are already appearing. When asked late in the season, Selanne said he’d make the decision before July 1st. Selanne is coming off a 31 goal, 80 point season.
Columbus wouldn’t mind moving to East … Could Malkin return this year? Derek Roy could be back for Game 7
- Aaron Portzline of the Columbus Dispatch: The Columbus Blue Jackets have brought up the idea of moving to the Eastern Conference. It’s not likely to happen anytime soon, if at all. A team from the East would have to move to West, likely due to relocation. Phoenix moving to Winnipeg wouldn’t change anything, nor would a team team relocating to Quebec City. The Board of Governors would also have to be convinced. It’s been rumored that the Red Wings could be the first team to switch Conferences if the option becomes available.
- Kevin Gorman of the Pittsburgh Tribune-Review: Penguins center Evgeni Malkin and coach Dan Bylsma haven’t ruled out his return during the playoffs. Malkin is at about 9 weeks into his 4-6 month rehab.
“He’s doing well, he’s working hard, but getting on the ice for him right now is really more to get his skates on, test the ice,” Bylsma said. “It’s not really part of rehab or part of him getting back into game shape. It’s part of his rehab, so it’s good for him to be getting on the ice. Again, that’s nine weeks into a long haul for Geno. He’s been working hard. He’s been working diligent. Getting on the ice is probably more for his mindset than it is to get him ready for a practice situation or anything to that accord.”
- Sam Carchidi of the Philadelphia Inquirer: The Flyers still haven’t named a starting goalie for this afternoon’s game (3 pm). Chris Pronger took some shots at yesterday’s practice and is a game time decision.
- Brian Hamilton and Chris Kuc of the Chicago Tribune: The Blackhawks hope to have Brent Seabrook back in the lineup today. He didn’t skate with the top 6 defenseman at practice yesterday and will likely need to pass a ‘fitness test’ before he’s given clearance to play.
- John Vogl of the Buffalo News: The Sabres have recalled Matt Ellis to replace the injured Jason Pominville. Brad Boyes was shifted to center. Derek Roy is very close to returning and he could return for a Game 7. “Derek is very close, very close,” Ruff said. “I would put him in a category of within days. Jochen Hecht is a matter of days, too. Help is on its way.”
- Hockey Night in Canada Hotstove: Glen Healy mentions that if the Coyotes were to relocate to Winnipeg, they’d ask Shane Doan if he’d want to come. If he doesn’t, they’d look to trade him, to a team “like LA.”
- Steve Simmons of the Toronto Sun: Simmons can’t see the Bruins or any other team that excited about signing Tomas Kaberle, “If he ever was a prominent player, he isn’t one anymore.” Ilya Bryzgalov isn’t first person who doesn’t want to play in Winnipeg, Zybnek Michalek choose Pittsburgh with one of the reason’s being he didn’t want to move to Winnipeg if the team relocated.
- Sarah McLellan of hte Arizona Republic: Ilya Bryzgalov’s best bet may be to re-sign with the Coyotes. His playoffs likely cost him some money. “A $1-1.5 million raise from his $4.5 million salary this season is fair and puts him right under the $6 million range enjoyed by the game’s most successful goalies.” Getting Keith Yandle’s contract settle soon would be the best for the organization. Yandle could receive an offer sheet this summer. He’ll be getting a big raise from the $1.3 million he made this season.
Pronger and Carter done for series? Who’ll be in net for Flyers? Isles retain Nabokov’s rights … Laich to 1st line
- Tim Panaccio of CSNPhilly: A source close to the Flyers said that Chris Pronger won’t be in the lineup for the rest of the series. Pronger is still experiencing pain in his fractured hand, and can’t really take contact to the area. Jeff Carter is also not expected back as he has a severely sprained MCL in his right knee, he’s been wearing a brace.
- Sam Carchidi of the Philadelphia Inquirer: Flyers coach Peter Laviolette wouldn’t say after last night’s game who would be the starting goalie for Game 6 on Sunday. The Flyers have used 3 goalies so far as Michael Leighton replaced Brian Boucher in last night’s game. “I’m going to sleep on that one and probably give you nothing,” he said.
- Katie Strang of Newsday: The NY Islanders have exercised the option of Evgeni Nabokov, and will retain his rights for next season.
- Tom Jones of the St. Petersburgh Times: Some are questioning if Lightning forward Steven Stamkos is injured. When asked if he was Stamkos answered, “Everything feels good.” He only has 1 point this series, and has missed a couple ‘optional practices’ this week, something he rarely does.
- Katie Carrera of the Washington Post: Brooks Laich will be on a line with Alex Ovechkin and Nicklas Backstrom for Game 5. Ovie will move to the right side. From coach Bruce Boudreau, “I like [Ovechkin on the right] for short periods of time because Alex is more used to playing left wing,” Boudreau said. “But Brooks is so responsible, you can play him anywhere and he’s going to make that line better. So I like that aspect of it. But right now, with Mike Knuble out, it makes for the better fit [to have Laich on the right]. Who knows, it might change.”
- Katie Carrera of the Washington Post: Mike Knuble won’t be able to go in Game 5 for the Capitals. Knuble was hit on the hand by a Mike Green shot in Game 3.
3 or 4 days left to save Coyotes? Bryzgalov isn’t a fan of Winnipeg … Pronger Game 5 decision this morning … Bruins expected more of Kaberle
- Damian Cox via twitter: The Major of Glendale may have “let the cat out of the bag by saying” that there could only be 3 or 4 days left to get a deal done to save the Coyotes.
- Paul Friesen of the Winnipeg Sun: If the Phoenix Coyotes move to Winnipeg, goalie Ilya Bryzgalov likely won’t be heading there with them,
“You don’t want to go to Winnipeg, right?” Bryzgalov said after the Coyotes lost to Detroit, Wednesday night. “Not many people live there, not many Russian people there. Plus it’s cold. There’s no excitement except the hockey. No park, no entertaining for the families, for the kids. It’s going to be tough life for your family.”
“I’ve been there for just once, maybe twice, when I play in minors. It was really cold,” Bryzgalov said. “I used the tunnels between the buildings to get to the arena. Because it was minus 40-something. Real cold.”
He likely won’t even listen to contract offers from a new owner,
“Probably not. I better go to somewhere in Russia, KHL, to be honest. Because KHL is Russian people, it’s family, friends. Even as a cold place, I can speak to people in Russian language.”
- Tim Panaccio of CSNPhilly: If Chris Pronger is able to go for Game 5, it will be made at the morning skate today. He would play a limited role if he were to get back into the lineup. He’s been out since March 8th. Jeff Carter is out for Game 5.
- Tim Sassone via twitter: Coach Vigneault said that Roberto Luongo will start in net for Game 6 for the Canucks.
- Jerry DiPaola of the Pittsburgh Tribune-Review: Sidney Crosby was not on the ice yesterday after 2 days on, “Some days, those (doctor-prescribed activities) are on the ice, some days they are off, and some days they are both,” Bylsma said. “He continues to keep going, but we need to see him progress further down the road before any kind of timetable (for a return) is talked about.” Bylsma won’t say won’t type of injury James Neal is dealing with.
- Jeremy Rutherford of the St. Louis Post Dispatch: A group including St. Louis Blues minority owner Tom Stillman are still trying to purchase the team despite having their bid rejected in April. The NHL and Blues chairman Dave Checketts rejected the bid. Sources say the offer was for slighty more than $100 million. Stillman has a 10% stake int he Blues, TowerBrook Capital Partners have 70% and SCP have 20%.
- Tim Sassone of the Daily Herald: After yesterday’s morning skate the Blackhawks found out that Brent Seabrook couldn’t play in Game 5. Noted by Sassone, “Judging from Quenneville’s comment and tone it sounded as if Seabrook didn’t pass the NHL-mandated baseline testing for players returning from concussions.”
- Katie Carrera of the Washington Post: It’s unknown when Capitals Mike Knuble will get back in the lineup. He practiced for 40 minutes yesterday and said afterwords he wasn’t sure if he could go for Game 5. He took a puck off the right hand in Game 3, and didn’t do much shooting at the practice.
- Brian McNally via twitter: Capitals defenseman Dennis Wideman hopes to be able to begin practicing with the team by the end of next week.
- Joe Haggerty of CSNNE: Bruins GM PeterChiarelli didn’t hold back on his assessment of Tomas Kaberle (comments made Wednesday),
“Has he been a disappointment? He hasn’t played up to the level that we expected,” said Chiarelli during a radio interview with 98.5 the Sports Hub’s Toucher and Rich Show. “There have been parts of his game where he hasn’t played in the playoffs for a while, and some of those [bad] habits have stuck with him. We expected better.”
- Kevin McGran of the Toronto Star: The Bruins power play is 7 for 77 in 27 games since acquiring Tomas Kaberle. The Maple Leafs would get a 2nd round pick if he re-signs with the Bruins, but he’s not worried about where he’ll play next year. “That’s obviously up to management after the season,” said Kaberle. “I’m just focusing on the games right now. I don’t even have it on my mind right now whether I sign here or where I’m going to sign July 1.”