Addition of Johnny Oduya gives Stars more Stanley Cup bling

Patrick Sharp (left) and Johnny Oduya (right). (Photo by Bill Smith/NHLI via Getty Images)

When the players who finished last season for the Dallas Stars stuck out their hands, only three Stanley Cups were to be found. Two of them belonged to Tyler Seguin and Alex Goligoski, guys who played small roles in their teams winning championships.

With his moves this summer, Stars GM Jim Nill has tripled that number, with the most recent coming in the form of defenseman Johnny Oduya, a two-time Cup winner who signed a two-year deal with the Stars worth $7.5 million. Add to that Patrick Sharp’s three Cups with Chicago and Antti Niemi’s championship with Chicago in 2010, to go along with the Stanley Cup Travis Moen won with the Anaheim Ducks in 2007.

Read more

Are Bowman’s 2015-16 Blackhawks better than the Cup winners?

Trevor Daley (left) and Ryan Garbutt (Photo by Norm Hall/NHLI via Getty Images)

Hall of Famer Steve Shutt once famously had this description of how Scotty Bowman’s players felt about him: “You hated him 364 days of the year, and on the 365th day you got your Stanley Cup ring.” Ken Dryden wrote in his book, The Game, that, “Scotty Bowman is not someone who is easy to like.” And Dino Ciccarelli had this evaluation: “He was a great coach and a rotten person.”

Chicago Blackhawks GM and Scotty’s son Stan Bowman does not generate the same kind of derision and admiration, but as a hockey executive, he is indeed proving that the apple does not fall very far from the tree. The moves he has made since the Blackhawks have won the Stanley Cup, while dictated by salary cap constraints, are proving that, in many ways, the younger son has the same cold blood running through his veins when it comes to dealing with players.

Read more

Can Dallas win with big offense and a young defense?

Patrick Sharp. (Photo by Andy Marlin/NHLI via Getty Images)

Dallas Stars GM Jim Nill is already off to a great start in the Patrick Sharp trade – he got the best player in the deal. But in acquiring the three-time Stanley Cup winner from Chicago along with prospect Stephen Johns, Nill had to give up his most experienced defenseman in Trevor Daley (agitator Ryan Garbutt also headed to the Hawks).

This sets up an interesting situation for the Stars: powerhouse offense and a green defense – and I don’t mean Victory Green.

Read more

Blackhawks ship Patrick Sharp to Stars, acquire Trevor Daley in four-player trade

Jared Clinton
sharp-184645601

Patrick Sharp is officially a victim of the Chicago Blackhawks salary cap crunch.

The Blackhawks announced Friday evening that they have dealt Sharp, along with defenseman Stephen Johns, to the Dallas Stars in exchange for blueliner Trevor Daley and winger Ryan Garbutt. Sharp is the latest domino to fall in a summer that has already seen the Blackhawks shock the hockey world by shipping out Brandon Saad to the Columbus Blue Jackets.

Sharp, 33, has spent the past decade in the Windy City and has been one of the Blackhawks cornerstone players during their resurgence over the past several seasons. An alternate captain with Chicago almost from jump, Sharp was arguably the biggest star on the club outside of Jonathan Toews and Patrick Kane. During his tenure with the Blackhawks, Sharp scored 239 goals and 511 points in 679 games with Chicago.

“On behalf of the entire Blackhawks organization, I’d like to thank Patrick for all that he helped our franchise accomplish during his time in Chicago, especially serving an integral role in bringing us three Stanley Cup championships,” said GM Stan Bowman in a statement. “He was one of our leaders on the ice, most notably as an alternate captain for several seasons, as well as off the ice with his countless contributions and volunteer work with team partners, sponsors and Blackhawks fans everywhere. He will forever be a Blackhawk and we wish him and his family nothing but the best in Dallas and beyond.” Read more

Who has lost the most fantasy value this off-season?

Matt Larkin
Antti Niemi. (Photo by Rocky Widner/Getty Images)

On Monday I explored which players have gained fantasy value based on off-season trades and signings so far. Some NHLers, however, lose value based on roster moves, whether it’s because they’re pushed down the depth chart by a new addition or because they’ve lost their key linemate to a trade or free agency.

Which players stand to produce less in 2015-16 based on summer transactions so far? Consider these names.

Read more

Who has gained the most fantasy value this off-season?

Matt Larkin
Phil Kessel (Photo by Claus Andersen/Getty Images)

With every off-season comes a flurry of trades and signings, which alter many players’ fantasy values. It’s not just the guys switching teams who change in fantasy pool worth, either. There’s a ripple effect. Player X may skyrocket in projected production after being dealt to Team Y, but the roster spot he leaves behind may open a hole for a certain prospect to climb the depth chart.

Which players have ascended the most in 2015-16 fantasy draft rankings so far? Here are some names to consider.

Read more

Does the T.J. Oshie trade actually make Washington better?

Matt Larkin
T.J. Oshie (Christian Petersen/Getty Images)

The Washington Capitals were a frontrunner for T.J. Oshie a week ago. It was public knowledge the St. Louis Blues were shopping the right winger and that the Capitals were in the market for a top-six winger who could score.

But after the Caps went out and got right winger Justin Williams July 1 as an unrestricted free agent, it comes as a bit of a surprise to see them land Oshie as well. They acquired him from the Blues Thursday for right winger Troy Brouwer, goaltending prospect Pheonix Copley and a third-round pick in 2016.

We know Washington wanted to add some skill to its top six or nine forwards. But losing Brouwer complicates things, especially if the Caps don’t re-sign UFA Joel Ward. What if they’re tipping the scale too far the other way?

Read more

Edmonton big winner, insanity big loser in Free Agent Frenzy

Andrej Sekera  (Photo by Jared Silber/NHLI via Getty Images)

The same day Connor McDavid wore his Edmonton Oiler colors for the first time ever on the ice, his bosses were upstairs going about the process of giving him some legitimate NHL players to surround him.

It’s difficult, nay impossible, to declare the winners and losers of a free agent frenzy day before Canada Day has even included, but it’s difficult to not get excited about what’s going on in western Canada these days. The oil patch has been sucked dry of good hockey for so long that sometimes it looked as though neither the Oilers nor the Calgary Flames were ever going to get it right.

Read more