It’s been almost exactly eight months since Carey Price last stepped on the ice for an NHL game, but the Montreal Canadiens will absolutely be ready for action come the World Cup of Hockey, according to Habs goalie coach Stephane Waite.
Waite told RDS.ca that he has spent three days practicing with Price, and that the 28-year-old netminder wasn’t showing any signs of injury. Price missed nearly 60 games in 2015-16 with an MCL sprain, which came only a week after he had returned from another, separate lower-body injury.
“I’m not a doctor, but all I know is that on the ice it was perfect,” Waite told RDS. “It is 100 percent restored. We are happy and our medical staff did a great job with him to bring him to the top. It is no longer a concern, he is ready to go.” Read more
Las Vegas expansion team owner Bill Foley isn’t having the easiest time naming his franchise.
“I didn’t realize how complicated it was, and it is complicated,” Foley said last week when introducing George McPhee as the team’s first GM. “We are working our way through the process right now, as we speak…We have a lot names in mind, but a lot of the ones I really liked are trademarked, so that is a little bit of an issue.”
The assumption is Foley is running into issues with naming the team Black Knights. A graduate of the U.S. Military Academy at West Point, Foley wants the team to have some tie to his alma mater. But Foley didn’t say it was Black Knights or nothing. In fact, he said he’d take suggestions if others were willing to give them. His only request was that the name should “represent Las Vegas, represent the environment and be unique to Las Vegas.”
Foley has said the NHL urged him to not to go the gambling route with the name. According to Foley, the league “has made it very clear that it really should not be associated with gambling and so on. It needs to be something a little different than that.”
But when it came to suggesting team names, sports betting site Sports Interaction appears to have simply come up with the first 34 names they could think of, attached betting odds to ‘em and called it a day. Seriously, check some of these out: Read more
To hear Toronto Maple Leafs GM Lou Lamoriello tell it, Auston Matthews was always going to get signed, always going to get the bonuses that were coming to him. Nothing to see here, folks. Move along.
Yes, it took a little longer than usual, but an entry-level contract with Matthews was announced Tuesday, 27 days after he was selected first overall. There had been an enormous amount of consternation about whether or not the Leafs and Matthews were at loggerheads about entry-level bonus money. During his many days with the New Jersey Devils, Lamoriello had a policy of not giving them to anyone. He also had a policy of no beards for anyone in the organization and everyone in the office had to wear a tie even in the summer, but it looks like Lamoriello is changing with the times.
The New York Islanders’ first season at the Barclays Center was successful on the ice, but that hasn’t stopped rumors from swirling about the potential for the club to find a new home in the near future.
Last week, the New York Daily News’ Peter Botte reported that new Islanders co-owner John Ledecky had said he believed the Brooklyn-based arena would play host to the club long-term, going so far as to call Barclays Center the Islanders’ “home.” However, according to a report from Bloomberg’s Scott Soshnick, the Islanders may be looking into another option.
Soshnick reported Thursday that the Islanders could be looking to move out of Brooklyn and into Queens, where they would build an arena situated near Citi Field, the home of the MLB’s New York Mets. According to Soshnick, discussions between the Islanders and Sterling Equities, the Mets’ ownership group, have been taking place for “months.” Read more
After weeks of anticipation, the New York Rangers finally made a significant roster move this summer. On Monday, they dealt center Derick Brassard and a seventh-round pick in 2018 to the Ottawa Senators for center Mika Zibanejad and a 2018 second-round selection.
In shipping out Brassard’s $5-million annual average salary through 2018-19 for Zibanejad’s $2.65 million in 2016-17, Rangers GM Jeff Gorton freed up an additional $2.35 million. He can put that toward re-signing a restricted free agent forward such as Chris Kreider or Kevin Hayes. He could also use it to his roster via trade or free agency.
Pat Leonard of the New York Daily News speculates Gorton could use the savings to acquire St. Louis Blues defenseman Kevin Shattenkirk. He could then re-sign the blueliner, who’s eligible next July for unrestricted free agency, to an extension worth $6-million annually. Leonard also wonders if Kreider could be swapped for Shattenkirk before the winger’s arbitration date on Friday. Read more
The past year could end up being one of the very best of Kyle Palmieri’s career.
Since being acquired by the Devils from the Ducks, Palmieri, 25, has had the breakout that Anaheim had been waiting for, potting 30 goals and 57 points in 82 games this past season in New Jersey. Palmieri parlayed his huge year into a five-year, $23.25-million contract in early July, and now he’s turned his biggest season into a chance to play alongside the best American players at the World Cup.
Palmieri was officially announced as the replacement for injured Tampa Bay Lightning forward Ryan Callahan, who underwent surgery in late-June to repair a labral tear in his right hip.
“Kyle brings an all-around game that we’re confident will fit nicely with the framework we’re looking to build,” said Team USA GM Dean Lombardi in a release. “He’s coming off an outstanding year in New Jersey and will play an important role with our team.” Read more
The Colorado Avalanche have re-signed center Mikhail Grigorenko to a one-year deal worth $1.3 million, giving the youngster a nice raise for 2016-17. Though the stat is largely ignored now, it’s worth noting that on a team filled with minus players, Grigorenko was a plus-2. But if the Avs want to make it back to the playoffs, they’re going to need more help than that.
After the way things started in Montreal for Zack Kassian, it would have been hard to imagine that it was he who would have had the better season following an off-season trade between the Canadiens and Canucks that sent Brandon Prust to Vancouver.
However, after the off-season crash and stint in the NHL/NHLPA substance abuse program, Kassian got his season on track with the Edmonton Oilers and finished the campaign with three goals and eight points in 35 games while averaging nearly 12:30 of ice time per game. Kassian earned himself a $1.5-million contract extension in Edmonton.
As for Prust, well, his season was rough. He dealt with an ankle injury early, was sent down to the AHL by February and finished his campaign on the shelf. Prust notched one goal and seven points with the Canucks, skated roughly 12:45 per game and he’s still looking for work. But the 32-year-old agitating winger said he’s ready to do whatever it takes to earn himself a deal.
“Right now, I would accept a job anywhere,” Prust told TVA Sports. “Everything depends on the team and if they see me in their plans.”
He said the plan is to start next season in the NHL, and added it doesn’t matter if he has a deal to start the season. His intention is to win one. And Prust won’t be alone among the players looking to earn a contract in training camp. Here are five players who could also be looking at securing NHL jobs through tryout contracts: Read more