• Take a look at the Avalanche’s reported Stadium Series jersey, Rockies inspired logo

    Jared Clinton
    Colorado alternate Stadium Series featured

    The Colorado Avalanche have a big season ahead, and in time for the 2015-16 campaign, the club will be unveiling some new threads.

    According to Icethetics, the Avalanche are in line for at least one new jersey this upcoming season before the club hits the ice for the Stadium Series contest against the Detroit Red Wings in February, with the possibility of a second alternate.

    With two new uniforms on the way, it was only a matter of time before we got a sneak peek at what might be in store for the Avalanche, and, courtesy of Icethetics, we now have a first look at what could be worn for the Stadium Series: Read more

  • Japanese goaltender Nana Fujimoto signs with NWHL’s New York Riveters

    Jared Clinton
    Nana Fujimoto (Martin Rose/Getty Images)

    Japan’s Nana Fujimoto had already made waves in the NWHL by attending the international free agent camp, but the New York Riveters are giving the 26-year-old goaltender the chance to become the face of women’s hockey in her home country.

    Late Monday, the Riveters announced they have inked Fujimoto to a contract for the upcoming NWHL campaign. Fujimoto is coming off of a Women’s World Championship tournament where she was named the top goaltender with a 1-1-0-1 record, one shutout, 1.52 goals-against average and .938 save percentage. Above her obvious talent, her personality made her an obvious choice for the Riveters, said GM Dani Rylan.

    “It’s impossible not to fall in love with Nana Fujimoto,” Rylan said in a release. “She is one of the best goaltenders in the world and her sheer joy while playing is contagious to teammates and fans alike. She literally traveled across the globe to earn a spot in the NWHL and we are both honored and ecstatic to welcome a member of Smile Japan to the league.” Read more

  • Quebec franchise in Western Conference? Bettman says maybe, but don’t believe it

    Jared Clinton
    Artist rendering of the Videotron Centre in Quebec City

    If Quebec City lands an expansion team, don’t expect the club to be jet setting across the continent to play a Western Conference schedule. It’s not that it’s impossible to achieve, it’s just that it doesn’t make any sense.

    In an interview with the Boston Globe’s Amalie Benjamin, NHL commissioner Gary Bettman talked about the expansion process and the submitted bids by groups from Las Vegas and Quebec City. What caught the attention of most, however, were his comments regarding the possibility for the potential Quebec City franchise to be playing in the Western Conference.

    “(Putting Quebec City in the Western Conference) is something we would obviously have to consider,” Bettman told Benjamin. “The experience with Winnipeg in the Southeast was less than ideal. The experience over time with Detroit and Columbus in the West — and they’re farther west geographically — they couldn’t wait to get into the East.

    “So geography is an issue. But the fact that we identify it as an issue doesn’t mean we’ve reached a conclusion. It means it’s one of the things that has to be considered.”

    The last line is the kicker: it’s something the league has considered. Just because they’ve considered the idea, though, doesn’t mean it will even come close to becoming a reality. And really, it likely never will. Read more

  • Why Cam Talbot is better prepared for Edmonton than you think

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

    Nothing puts Cam Talbot’s new life in a nutshell like the simple act of trying to speak with him.

    He’s easy enough to find at Smashfest, Dominic Moore’s charity ping-pong tournament. Talbot, 6-foot-3 and 195 pounds, towers over most of the NHL players, journalists and fans in attendance. He’s a game interview subject, too, polite as can be and suggesting we find a quieter part of the building to hear each other better.

    Every step Talbot takes, however, he’s mobbed. Fans cling to each of his appendages, begging for photo ops, and he obliges each with a smile. Every time it appears he’s home free, three more people grab him.

    He apologizes, but I just shake my head.

    “Don’t worry about it. Welcome to life on a Canadian team.”

    Read more

  • New York Riveters sign Lyudmila Belyakova, NWHL’s first Russian player

    Jared Clinton
    Lyudmila Belyakova (Richard Wolowicz/Freestyle Photography/Getty Images)

    The New York Riveters made NWHL history when they inked Janine Weber to the league’s first free agent contract, but the club has made history of another kind, signing the league’s first Russian player.

    Riveters GM Dani Rylan announced this past weekend that the club has signed Russian national team forward Lyudmila Belyakova to a contract for the 2015-16 season. Belyakova was one of the attendees at the league’s international free agent camp and impressed Rylan, which led to the signing.

    “Belyakova is a dynamic forward with competitive international experience. She’s goal-oriented and creative around the net,” said Rylan in a release. “We’re excited to showcase international talent in the NWHL and hope Lyudmila is the first of many Russian players to join our league.” Read more

  • Colin Wilson signs four-year, $15.75 million deal with Predators

    Jared Clinton
    Colin Wilson. (Stephen Dunn/Getty Images)

    Cross out another arbitration case as the Nashville Predators and restricted free agent Colin Wilson have come to terms on a four-year, $15.75 million contract.

    The Predators announced the signing of Wilson on Monday morning and unveiled the terms of the contract via a release on the team’s website. Wilson’s new deal, which carries a $3.9375 million cap hit, will pay him $3.75 million in the first season of the contract, with each of the following three years paying out $4 million per campaign. Overall, it’s a brilliant deal for Nashville.

    The raise for Wilson is a significant one, as he nearly doubles his salary from the past three seasons, but it doesn’t come even close to breaking the bank for the Predators. Following his entry-level deal, Wilson inked a three-year, $6 million deal that expired at the end of this past season.

    Wilson, 25, was a first-round selection, seventh overall, of the Predators in the 2008 draft. Over his six seasons in the NHL, Wilson had shown steady growth, but it wasn’t until this past season that he really broke out. Read more

  • Rumor Roundup: Trading Sedins would spark Vancouver rebuild

    Daniel Sedin and Henrik Sedin  (Jeff Vinnick/NHLI via Getty Images)

    NBC Sports’ Jason Brough notes Daniel and Henrik Sedin were recently asked by a Swedish newspaper if they felt they might be traded. The twins replied they had no intention of finishing their NHL careers with another team, even if it meant another shot at a Stanley Cup.

    Brough observes, however, the Sedins didn’t outright reject the notion of waiving their no-movement clauses by the final season (2017-18) of their contracts. Should the Canucks miss the 2016 playoffs or become a first-round casualty again, Brough suspects calls for a major rebuild in Vancouver could increase.

    Such a rebuild would mean shipping out the Sedins. Their no-movement clauses, however, aren’t the only impediment. It’s no stretch of the imagination to assume the twins will only accept a deal in which they’re moved together to the same team. With both earning $7-million per season, takers for their combined $14-million annual salaries could be scarce. That especially if the salary cap doesn’t significantly increase for 2016-17. Read more

  • Rangers lock up Stepan to six-year, $39 million contract

    Jared Clinton
    Derek Stepan (Al Bello/Getty Images)

    Derek Stepan has signed on to remain a Blueshirt for the next six seasons.

    After reports had surfaced over the weekend that Stepan and the New York Rangers were roughly $2 million apart on salary demands – Stepan wanted $7.25 million, the Rangers were coming in around $5.2 million – GM Jeff Gorton and Stepan’s party got together and hammered out a brand new contract for the 25-year-old pivot.

    According to ESPN’s Katie Strang, Stepan’s new deal carries a cap hit of $6.5 million per season, which makes it a $39 million deal. While pricy, it’s fair value for Stepan and helps the Rangers solidify their one-two rotation at center with Stepan and Derick Brassard locked up for the next four seasons. Read more