Dennis Seidenberg beats Sergei Bobrovsky from center ice

Jared Clinton
Seidenberg Featured

It used to be that every time the now-retired Detroit Red Wing Nicklas Lidstrom wound up from center ice, looking like he was about to dump the puck in, that opposition goaltenders had to be on watch. More than once he had beaten goaltenders from that spot. It looks like Boston’s Dennis Seidenberg has been watching some game tape.

On Friday night, with the Boston visiting Columbus for a contest with the Blue Jackets, the Bruins defenseman tried fired a slapshot from the red line that is going to give Columbus netminder Sergei Bobrovsky nightmares: Read more

Jack Johnson saga a sober warning for today’s NHL millionaire

Jack Johnson (Photo by John Grieshop/Getty Images)

Stephane Robidas has made $25 million during the course of his NHL career, with another $5 million coming to him within the next two years. That’s enough money to set himself, his children and probably his children’s children up for life if he’s responsible with it.

That’s the best part of being a professional athlete. You’re among the best in the world at what you do and you get paid wildly enormous amounts of money to do it. The downside is that in working so hard to become that hockey player, you often become so singularly focused that other areas of your life, like money management, take a back seat. And that opens you up to having others manage your money, which can lead to situations such as the one involving Jack Johnson of the Columbus Blue Jackets. Despite career earnings of almost $21 million, Johnson filed for bankruptcy last month after firing his agent and leaving his finances to his parents.

Given the circumstances, perhaps it’s surprising it doesn’t happen more often.

“I find whenever you start making money, you have lots of friends,” Robidas said. “It’s tough to earn money, but it’s really easy to burn money.”

And the more money you have, the easier it is to watch it burn, or at least have it burn without you knowing about it. According to the excellent report on the Johnson situation by Aaron Portzline of the Columbus Dispatch, Johnson allowed his parents complete access to his finances without any accountability checks. And when he did ask questions about where his money was going, he took the answers at face value.

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Injuries are no excuse, unless you’re the Columbus Blue Jackets

Ken Campbell
(Photo by Debora Robinson/NHLI via Getty Images)

When a team runs into a rash of injuries, it’s easy to say that it creates an opportunity for someone else, that injuries can’t be used as an excuse, that organizations should have enough depth to recover and that everybody just needs to play harder.

And some of those things are true. But then you have the Columbus Blue Jackets, who until recently were losers of nine straight games and currently 10 of their past 12. There’s a time where injuries have to stop being an excuse. But, when you look at it objectively, this is not one of those times. Read more

Rumor Roundup: Nervous GMs may make moves near American Thanksgiving

Tyler Myers

Since the implementation of the salary cap in 2005, early-season NHL trades have become rare. Even the ability for teams to absorb part of a player’s salary failed to spark an increase in player movement during a season’s opening weeks.

That partially explains why it took a month for this regular season’s first trade to occur, when the Dallas Stars shipped aging defenseman Sergei Gonchar to the Montreal Canadiens for forward Travis Moen. Since that deal there’s anticipation over when the next NHL trade will take place. Read more

Blue Jackets snap nine-game losing streak, but are the playoffs out of reach already?

Josh Elliott
Columbus Blue Jackets

The Columbus Blue Jackets won their first game in three weeks on Friday night, snapping their franchise record-tying nine-game losing streak with a 4-3 win over the Philadelphia Flyers in Scott Hartnell‘s return to the City of Brotherly Love. But the Blue Jackets now find themselves at the bottom of a very deep hole, sitting second-last in the Eastern Conference after 16 games.

Next weekend marks American Thanksgiving, a quarter pole of sorts when teams usually have a sense of whether they’re a playoff team or not. Very few teams make the playoffs if they’re not within four points of a spot at Thanksgiving, and Columbus is a far cry from that right now.

Still, Friday’s win comes as a relief for the injury-ravaged CBJs, who are missing key players like Brandon Dubinsky, Artem Anisimov, Nathan Horton and Sergei Bobrovsky from their roster. ‘Goalie Bob’ returned Friday to back up on the bench, but Dubinsky is recovering from abdominal surgery, Anisimov is still out with a concussion and Horton is more worried about his quality of life than an NHL return at this point.
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Former teammate Marc Savard feels Nathan Horton’s pain

Ken Campbell
Nathan Horton  (Photo by Frederick Breedon/Getty Images)

If it turns out that this is the last that we’ve seen of Nathan Horton as an NHL player, there will likely be a segment of the population that figures Horton has had it pretty lucky. After all, he played the game he loved at the highest level and has made $38 million doing it, with another $32.1 million coming to him in retirement.

What’s a little back pain when that’s the pot of gold at the end of the rainbow? Well, the money is nice, but it won’t replace the void that is created by being robbed of the opportunity to do something you’ve done since you were a child. And nobody knows that better than Horton’s former teammate Marc Savard, whose career was suddenly ended 25 games into the 2010-11 season, largely because of a concussion he sustained on a hit from Matt Cooke the season before. Read more

Rumor Roundup: Kings look for relief, Blue Jackets look at options

Lyle Richardson
Mike Richards

Since the NHL suspended Los Angeles Kings defenseman Slava Voynov with pay while he’s under investigation for suspicion of domestic violence, the club has found it difficult to fill his spot on the roster.

The Kings possess limited cap space, and with Voynov’s $4.166-million annual average salary still counting against their cap, they’ve struggled to find a replacement. Only this week did sufficient room open up to allow the Kings to sign free agent blueliner Jamie McBain to a one-year, $550K deal. Read more