Player News

Date: Team: Pos:

With the start of training camp just around the corner, Zdeno Chara doesn't want to spend much time dwelling on Boston's failed 2014-15 bid.

"I don't want to go back too much to last year. I think the most frequent word that came out of last season was inconsistency, and that’s what we have to work on," said Chara. "We have to make sure we play with that consistency, and not experience those ups and downs like last year." Chara is coming off of a down season in which he only recorded 20 points and while Boston might bounce back, he is less likely to. At the age of 38, his decline makes sense.
Sep 1 - 10:02 AM

Connor McDavid doesn't want to focus on reaching numerical goals.

In other words, he'd rather focus on having a good season rather than recording X amount of points. Obviously a good season would likely go hand-in-hand with offensive production for a skilled forward like McDavid, but his point is partially that if he sets those kinds of statistical benchmarks for himself, it could end up negatively influencing him. He also noted, "Numbers are one thing, but some of the best games I have ever played have been games in which I didn't get a point or maybe had one point." Of course, with a focus on fantasy hockey, we obviously put a lot of value in numbers. McDavid is a risky pick because rookies, even incredibly talented ones, are particularly hard to predict, but he at least has the potential to surpass the 70-point mark in his first campaign.
Source: NHL.com
Aug 31 - 9:48 PM

Jacob Dowell will attend AHL Rockford's training camp on a tryout basis.

Rockford is affiliated with Dowell's old team, the Chicago Blackhawks. Dowell is a veteran of 157 NHL games, but the 30-year-old spent the entire 2014-15 campaign in the minors where he recorded five goals and 15 points in 76 contests.
Source: Icehogs.com
Aug 31 - 7:02 PM

Jakub Voracek apparently played a big role in recruiting Michal Neuvirth, who signed a two-year, $3.25 million deal with the Flyers this summer.

Voracek doesn't feel that he was the one to convince Neuvirth to move to Philadelphia, but Neuvirth seems to see things differently. "I met Jake and we talked about things here and he said all good things about the Flyers," Neuvirth recalled. "He wanted me to come here. I think it made him happy when I signed here. ... He was the reason I signed here." He'll serve as Steve Mason's understudy in 2015-16 and is projected to play in around 25 games assuming both netminders stay relatively healthy.
Aug 31 - 5:29 PM

Ray Whitney has joined the Carolina Hurricanes as a pro scout.

Whitney scored 385 goals and 1,064 points over the course of his 1,330-game NHL playing career. He won the Stanley Cup with the Hurricanes back in 2006. Along with Whitney, Carolina also added Mark Craig and Jeff Daniels to their pro scouting staff. Don Elland has been brought on board to serve as an amateur scout.
Aug 31 - 4:06 PM

David Leggio has reportedly agreed to a professional tryout offer with the Winnipeg Jets.

Leggio had a 3.66 GAA and .869 save percentage in 28 AHL games between the Bridgeport Sound Tigers and Portland Pirates last season. Barring an injury, he won't have a real shot of making the Jets' opening game roster, but this tryout might lead to him signing a two-way contract with the Jets so that he can play for the AHL's Manitoba Moose.
Aug 31 - 3:26 PM

Red Wings GM Ken Holland expects that the fact Jeff Blashill won the Calder Cup with Detroit's AHL team in Grand Rapids will make help him make a smooth transition to the NHL.

"Some of the players he's got a relationship going back to Grand Rapids," Holland said. "Anytime you win a championship at any level and he's won a Calder Cup championship as coach with half those players that are going to be here now, it's a special bond." The Red Wings are being asked to adjust after having Mike Babcock serve as their coach for a decade. Under those circumstances, having him be replaced by a bench boss many of the team's younger players are already familiar with should certainly be an asset.
Aug 31 - 1:59 PM

Evgeny Kuznetsov thinks the two-year bridge contract he signed in July is good for both sides.

Kuznetsov hopes to sign a long-term deal with Washington eventually, but this contract gives him a chance to show Washington what he's capable of. He recorded 11 goals and 37 points in 80 contests last season and he's believed to have a significant amount of untapped upside. In the meantime, his contract comes with a $3 million annual cap hit.
Aug 31 - 12:22 PM

While Blues coach Ken Hitchcock obviously wishes that Patrik Berglund didn't need shoulder surgery, the bench boss does see a silver lining in the timing of the news.

Berglund is out for a minimum of four months. "You never want to see a guy get hurt," Hitchcock said, "but it couldn't come at a better time because it allows us to have preparation for finding his replacement. It gives us time to look at guys in training camp. We've brought in some NHL players to take a look at, bona fide NHL players, so we've got lots of time to see how it works. If this happens during the season or even during exhibition season, it's a different story, but we've got a lot of time to figure it out and we're going to get a good player back when we need him the most." Scott Gomez might help fill the void after accepting a professional tryout offer with the Blues.
Aug 31 - 10:13 AM

Bob Caporale, whose company Game Plan helped broker the sale of the Ottawa Senators and St. Louis Blues, isn't surprised that the sale of the Pittsburgh Penguins is taking as long as it is.

Penguins owners Mario Lemieux and Ron Burkle started the process back in June when they retained Morgan Stanley. Since then there's been very little in the way of updates. "I'm not surprised at all, because these are very valuable assets and there are complications, particularly if the buyer is someone who hasn't been involved in professional sports in the past," Caporale said. "It may take time to do their due diligence. Frankly at this time of year, as you know vacations and so forth will always slow things up." With that in mind, he thinks the process will gain steam in the fall.
Aug 31 - 10:00 AM

Describing him as a "mover" and a "thinker," Florida Panthers management provided a positive comparison between defenseman Michael Matheson and Chicago Blackhawks star Duncan Keith.

"Mike’s a dynamic skater, moves the puck well, just like Duncan Keith, obviously," Bryan McCabe said back in early July. "I think we’d be jumping for joy if we caught lightning in a bottle like that." Florida selected Matheson 23rd overall in 2012, and he's gotten his feet wet a bit at the AHL level after his third season with Boston College. Those comparisons are lofty, but it will be interesting to see how he pans out over time (Matheson is 21).
Aug 30 - 7:18 PM

The St. Louis Blues didn't make big changes this off-season, but GM Doug Armstrong's still hoping to bring in the "first of many" Stanley Cups.

That's a throwaway comment at a fan event, for the most part, but it's also a reminder that the Blues boast a lot of the tools a team needs to go big. Don't be too shocked if there's an in-season trade or two if St. Louis gets off to a slow start.
Aug 30 - 3:22 PM

Wearing a suit is a different kind of challenge than wearing a sweater for the Ottawa Senators, as it seems Daniel Alfredsson will learn.

The Ottawa Sun's Bruce Garrioch spoke with anonymous league executives who wonder if Alfredsson will put in the work to be a successful front office figure in Ottawa. We've seen examples of great players failing (Wayne Gretzky) and flourishing (Steve Yzerman), so it's all about what Alfredsson is capable of and willing to do.
Source: Ottawa Sun
Aug 30 - 2:44 PM

It sounds like the 2015-16 season was the perfect time for Sergei Plotnikov to make the jump to the NHL, and it doesn't hurt that it's with the Pittsburgh Penguins.

At 25, he's in a situation that's possibly golden if he can line up with Evgeni Malkin (as some expect). Plotnikov's KHL production has been about 15 goals and 35 points (give or take) in 50+ games for three straight seasons. The Penguins would probably be delighted with similar production.
Aug 30 - 2:36 PM

CSNBayArea.com's Kevin Kurz pegs Tommy Wingels for a career-year in 2015-16, even if health is a bit of an issue.

Wingels has 20-goal, 50-point potential, according to Kurz. The 27-year-old would need to see quite a jump from what seemed like breakthrough seasons in 2013-14 and 2014-15 (38 and 36 points respectively) to do so. Based on those numbers, 20 goals and 40 points might be a safer wager.
Aug 30 - 2:31 PM



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