Canada’s world junior camp roster shows a wide-open competition

Canada's Lawson Crouse (Photo by Claus Andersen/Getty Images)

Heading into the 2015 world juniors in Toronto, there were many Canadian players we could basically check off as guarantees long before the roster was decided. Connor McDavid, Max Domi, Anthony Duclair, Sam Reinhart, Zach Fucale, Darnell Nurse, Josh Morrissey and Madison Bowey were all locks, for example.

With the tournament shifting to Helsinki for 2016, Canada’s braintrust will have some tougher decisions to make, as evidenced by the summer camp roster.

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Rumor Roundup: Will Cam Talbot be the answer in Edmonton, Buffalo or San Jose?

Cam Talbot (Photo by Bruce Bennett/Getty Images Sport)

Earlier this week, Larry Brooks of the New York Post reported that sources claim there’s considerable interest from several clubs in Rangers backup Cam Talbot. It’s expected Talbot, who turns 28 in July, could be traded by the upcoming NHL draft in Florida.

Brooks didn’t specify which teams are pursuing Talbot, but TSN’s Darren Dreger lists the Edmonton Oilers, Calgary Flames, San Jose Sharks, Dallas Stars, Florida Panthers and Buffalo Sabres among the suitors. Dreger claims the Oilers, Sabres and Sharks are “pretty eager”, while the Flames, Panthers and Stars have “some interest.”

It shouldn’t be surprising that Talbot’s attracted so much attention. His solid performance filling in for sidelined Henrik Lundqvist in February and March suggests he has the capability to become a full-time NHL starter. He won’t get that opportunity with the Rangers.

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Lecavalier’s agent: Vinny won’t be retiring “under any circumstances”

Jared Clinton
Vincent Lecavalier (Photo by Joel Auerbach/Getty Images)

Barring a trade, it appears that Vincent Lecavalier will be with the Philadelphia Flyers for a third season, as his agent has said no one from the organization has contacted him about buying out Lecavalier’s contract and the veteran isn’t ready to call it a career quite yet.

In an interview with TSN’s Frank Seravalli, Lecavalier’s agent Kent Hughes said that the 35-year-old Lecavalier isn’t ready to retire, “under any circumstances.” There had been some rumblings that Lecavalier could be considered for a buyout, but those were squashed by GM Ron Hextall, who said he didn’t intend to buy Lecavalier out. Read more

Timonen plans to head back to Philadelphia, seek job with Flyers

Jared Clinton
Kimmo Timonen (Jonathan Daniel/Getty Images)

Kimmo Timonen had the perfect capper to his outstanding 16-year career: he won the Stanley Cup. But even after hoisting the sport’s grandest prize in a Chicago Blackhawks uniform, Timonen made no mistake that he plans to head back to Philadelphia and added that a place with the Flyers could be in the cards for him.

That’s not to say he isn’t retiring, however. Make no mistake, Timonen has played his final game in the NHL and will retire within the next few weeks. But in an interview with CSN Philly’s Tim Panaccio, Timonen said that once he gets back to his home, which is actually in South Jersey, he’ll take some time to decide what his next step will be, but that could very well mean a spot inside the Flyers organization. Read more

Five players who are top buyout candidates this summer

Vincent Lecavalier

Buffalo Sabres GM Tim Murray made headlines Thursday afternoon when he said the team has considered buying out the contract of 25-year-old winger Cody Hodgson.

Hodgson signed a six-year contract in September 2011 valued at an average annual salary of $4.25 million, but his production slipped in a big way this past season as he managed just six goals and 13 points in 78 games. Hodgson, who was drafted 10th overall by the Canucks in 2008, hasn’t quite panned out to be the big star the Sabres were hoping for when they acquired him from Vancouver at the 2011-12 trade deadline.

While he did manage consecutive good in 2012-13 and 2013-14, including scoring a career high 20 goals and 44 points in the latter, the drop in play was cause for his name to be mentioned in buyout talks during the season. With Hodgson currently working out in Sweden with a skating coach, according to Murray, if he comes into training camp and his play doesn’t please the staff, it’s possible he’s a late addition to the free agent pool.

Hodgson isn’t the only player who could be headed for a buyout this summer, and here are five other notable players who could be getting paid by two clubs next season: Read more

NHL coach’s challenge a virtual certainty after competition committee edict

Kevin Shattenkirk (Dilip Vishwanat/Getty Images)

Barring any unforeseen developments, the limited-in-scope coach’s challenge rumored for years to be coming to the NHL will be implemented in the 2015-16 season, thanks in part to a recommendation from the league and NHL Players’ Association’s joint competition committee Thursday.

The competition committee – comprised of four NHL GMs, one owner and four players – recommended league coaches be permitted to challenge goals that involve goaltender interference and offside plays with a video review. Goalie interference challenges would be considered by on-ice officials, while offside challenges would be addressed by the NHL’s video review center in Toronto. And if a coach has already used his timeout, he is unable to challenge any play. Read more

Blackhawks advancing to final nets Flyers two second-round picks for Timonen

Kimmo Timonen (Jonathan Daniel/Getty Images)

With Kimmo Timonen watching from the sidelines and David Rundblad skating in his place, Chicago advanced to the Stanley Cup final. Regardless of his impact on the Blackhawks’ run to the final, however, the trade that sent Timonen to the Windy City has landed his former team, the Philadelphia Flyers, two second-round draft picks.

Chicago acquired Timonen, 40, from Philadelphia at the trade deadline in hopes the veteran blueliner would help solidify what had been a shaky defense corps throughout the regular season. The plan, at least early in the post-season, was to use Timonen alongside one of the more steady Chicago defenders, such as Brent Seabrook, in hopes that he would be able to find his legs in the post-season and make an impact for the Blackhawks. Read more

The top 10 prospects from the Memorial Cup

Oshawa's Cole Cassels  (Photo by Vaughn Ridley/Getty Images)

The 97th Memorial Cup is in the books and it ended in spectacular fashion. We all know it takes a team to win such a trophy, but some individuals naturally stood out. Here’s a look at the players who made the biggest impressions on me during my time in Quebec City.

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