Wired: Into the homestretch (Rotoworld)
(Sun, 09 Mar 2014 16:47:00 PDT)
Ryan Dadoun looks at a variety of waiver options following the trade deadline.
Stajan takes leave of absence from Flames following son’s death (NBC Sports)
(Sun, 09 Mar 2014 14:27:04 PDT)
Calgary releases a statement on the matter.
Islanders-Canucks Preview (The Associated Press)
(Sun, 09 Mar 2014 11:09:37 PDT)
It's been over six weeks since the Vancouver Canucks last strung together consecutive wins, something that's difficult to accomplish with so few victories from which to build. They've put themselves in a rare position to end that drought, and Monday night's home matchup with the New York Islanders pits them against the next-worst team in hockey during their futile stretch. New York (24-33-9) is a point better at 3-9-2 and also hasn't won consecutive games in that span, but thanks to their season-long struggles, the Islanders don't have the pressure of being four points out of a playoff spot. The Canucks have lost 19 of 25 games since going 10-1-2 in December.
NHL Three Stars: Bob shuts out the Preds; Lupul wins it in OT (Puck Daddy)
(Sat, 08 Mar 2014 23:26:47 PST)
No. 1 Star: Sergei Bobrovsky, Columbus Blue Jackets
Officer Bobrovsky stopped all 28 shots he faced, as Artem Anisimov’s goal stood up for the 1-0 victory over the Nashville Predators. That included an awesome save on Colin Wilson with 28 seconds remaining.
No. 2 Star: Joffrey Lupul, Toronto Maple Leafs
Lupul cashed in a Dion Phaneuf pass on the doorstep, as the Toronto Maple Leafs defeated the Philadelphia Flyers, 4-3. He earlier assisted on Nazem Kadri’s first-period goal. Kimmo Timonen had two goals for the Flyers.
No. 3 Star: Tuomo Ruutu, New Jersey Devils
The former Carolina Hurricanes forward set up Travis Zajac’s opening goal and scored the game-winner for the Devils, as New Jersey survived a Canes rally for the 5-4 win. Adam Henrique had two goals.
Honorable mention: Tommy Wingels had two goals and Logan Couture had three points in the San Jose Sharks’ 4-0 win over the Montreal Canadiens. Antti Niemi made 27 saves for the shutout. … Ryan Miller made 26 saves and Patrik Berglund had the game-winner in the St. Louis Blues’ 2-1 win over the Colorado Avalanche. … Erik Cole had a goal and an assist and Tyler Seguin had a 3-point night in the Dallas Stars’ 4-3 win over the Minnesota Wild. … Ales Hemsky and Jason Spezza each had three assists in the Ottawa Senators’ 5-3 win over the Winnipeg Jets. … Tuukka Rask was perfect in the shootout while Reilly Smith scored for the Boston Bruins, as they defeated the Tampa Bay Lightning, 4-3. … The Washington Capitals scored three third-period goals to rally post the Phoenix Coyotes, 3-2. ... Eddie Lack rebounded from a bad goal to make 22 saves in the Vancouver Canucks; 2-1 win over the Calgary Flames.
Dishonorable mention: Mark Streit and Tyler Bozak were a minus-3. … Thomas Vanek was scoreless again for Montreal. … Paul Stastny played just 40 seconds before leaving the Avs’ game with an injury. … Dallas Stars goaltender Kari Lehtonen left the game in the third period following a collision with Minnesota Wild center Erik Haula. … Brendan Gallagher and Max Pacioretty were a minus-3. … Raffi Torres boarded Lars Eller and was jumped by Jarred Tinordi, who was given an instigator. … Ondrej Pavelec was pulled after giving up five goals.
Canucks end 4-game skid with 2-1 win over Flames (The Associated Press)
(Sat, 08 Mar 2014 23:21:01 PST)
John Tortorella and the Vancouver Canucks kept their cool this time around. Yannick Weber scored the go-ahead goal early in the third period, helping the Canucks snap a four-game skid with a 2-1 win over the Calgary Flames on Saturday night. Tortorella went after Flames coach Bob Hartley by storming Calgary's locker room during intermission of that game. We have to scratch, claw and grind and find points anyway possible.'' Despite Hartley starting tough guy Brian McGrattan again Saturday night, the teams clean until six minutes into the game when Bieksa got the better of Calgary's Mark Giordano with a right hand after the two dropped gloves.
Canucks battle to 2-1 win over Flames (The SportsXchange)
(Sat, 08 Mar 2014 22:56:40 PST)
VANCOUVER, British Columbia -- The Vancouver Canucks still have trouble scoring more than two goals in a game, but on Saturday night a couple was enough. Defenseman Yannick Weber skated in from the point to score the winning goal in the third period during a goal-mouth scramble as Vancouver beat the Calgary Flames 2-1 at Rogers Arena. The Canucks have scored more than two goals just three times in their past 21 games. "We have to scratch, claw and grind our way to get every point we can," said Canucks coach John Tortorella, who made the rare move of coming into the team's locker room during postgame interviews to rave to center Ryan Kesler about his game.
Lack, Canucks bounce back from McGrattan goal, beat Flames 2-1 (NBC Sports)
(Sat, 08 Mar 2014 22:09:24 PST)
A much-needed victory for Vancouver.
Canucks 2, Flames 1 (The SportsXchange)
(Sat, 08 Mar 2014 22:01:52 PST)
VANCOUVER, British Columbia -- The Vancouver Canucks scored more than one goal for only the third time in 10 games to beat the Calgary Flames 2-1 on Saturday night at Rogers Arena.
Fast fights: Bieksa makes quick work of Giordano, Tinordi roughs up Torres (NBC Sports)
(Sat, 08 Mar 2014 21:14:36 PST)
Short ones on Saturday.
Eddie Lack gives up center ice goal to Brian McGrattan of all people (VIDEO) (Puck Daddy)
(Sat, 08 Mar 2014 21:10:59 PST)
On Friday night, Roberto Luongo recorded a shut out in his return to the crease for the Florida Panthers.
Twenty-four hours later, Eddie Lack, the goalie who inherited the starting gig for the Vancouver Canucks after they traded Luongo, gave up this goal to Brian McGrattan of the Calgary Flames:
Yowch. A whiff from center ice ...
Obviously, Lack was no match for the prolific goal scoring of Big Ern, who scored his second of the season and his fifth NHL goal since 2011.
Here’s the actual reaction from John Tortorella on the goal:
Video: Flames score center-ice goal against Canucks’ Lack (NBC Sports)
(Sat, 08 Mar 2014 20:32:59 PST)
Roberto Luongo: quiet, so far.
Sens’ MacArthur (hand) won’t require surgery, could be back next weekend (NBC Sports)
(Sat, 08 Mar 2014 17:53:17 PST)
A solid Saturday for the Sens.
Hemsky has 3 assists, sparks Senators over Jets (The SportsXchange)
(Sat, 08 Mar 2014 17:45:42 PST)
WINNIPEG, Manitoba -- Ales Hemsky is enjoying playing hockey again, and the Ottawa Senators are just happy he's happy. The gifted right-winger was at his play-making best, assisting on three goals -- including rookie center Mike Hoffman's first NHL tally -- to pace the Senators to a 5-3 victory over the Winnipeg Jets in a Saturday matinee. Hemsky, picked up at the trade deadline Wednesday from the Edmonton Oilers, set up two goals in the first period and two more in the second for the Senators (28-25-11). Hemsky's third helper midway through the middle frame started a pretty passing play with center Jason Spezza and Hoffman, whose shot to the top shelf ended the night for Winnipeg starting goalie Ondrej Pavelec.
Senators 5, Jets 3 (The SportsXchange)
(Sat, 08 Mar 2014 15:13:23 PST)
WINNIPEG, Manitoba -- Ottawa center Mike Hoffman scored his first NHL goal and newly acquired right-winger Ales Hemsky had four assists as the Senators beat the Winnipeg Jets, 5-3, in a Saturday matinee. Hemsky, picked up at the trade deadline Wednesday from the Edmonton Oilers, set up two goals in the first period and two more in the second for the Senators (28-25-11). His fourth helper midway through the middle frame started a pretty passing play with center Jason Spezza and Hoffman, whose shot to the top shelf ended the night for Winnipeg starting goalie Ondrej Pavelec. Hemsky also assisted on goals by left-winger Milan Michalek and defensemen Jared Cowen and Eric Gryba.
Flames-Canucks Preview (The Associated Press)
(Fri, 07 Mar 2014 23:48:13 PST)
A fierce line brawl immediately broke out when the Vancouver Canucks and Calgary Flames met last. Now, the Canucks are fighting for their playoff lives. Hoping to keep pace in the hunt, Vancouver tries to continue its recent domination of visiting Calgary when these Pacific Division foes meet Saturday night. Five fights broke out at the same time just two seconds into the Canucks' 3-2 shootout win over the Flames (25-31-7) on Jan. 18.
Colborne scores twice, Flames beat Isles 4-3 (The Associated Press)
(Fri, 07 Mar 2014 23:18:48 PST)
On the night Calgary honored former star Joe Nieuwendyk, an inspired new generation of young centers led the Flames to a thrilling victory. Joe Colborne scored twice and Sean Monahan had the other goal in a furious third- period rally that saw Calgary overcome a 3-1 deficit with less than nine minutes to go to edge the New York Islanders 4-3 on Friday night. Colborne was not yet born when Nieuwendyk scored 51 goals as a rookie in 1987-88. ''You forget how good he was,'' said Colborne, whose first career two-goal game gives him seven goals on the season.
Inspired Colborne scores twice in Flames' 4-3 win (The SportsXchange)
(Fri, 07 Mar 2014 22:16:35 PST)
CALGARY, Alberta -- The Calgary Flames saluted a former star on Friday night, honoring retired center Joe Nieuwendyk as part of their Forever a Flame program. Flames right winger Joe Colborne, who was raised in Calgary and idolized Nieuwendyk during his playing days, paid tribute with the first two-goal performance of his career. Colborne, a 24-year-old rookie, started and finished Calgary's furious third-period comeback in a 4-3 win over the New York Islanders at the Scotiabank Saddledome, a special night because Nieuwendyk's No. 25 was raised to the rafters.
Flames complete the comeback in win over Islanders (NBC Sports)
(Fri, 07 Mar 2014 22:11:47 PST)
On a special night for one of the franchise's greats.
NHL Three Stars: Luongo perfect in Panthers’ debut; Franzen, Colborne keys comeback (Puck Daddy)
(Fri, 07 Mar 2014 21:54:28 PST)
The Rangers celebrate the slaying of Anton Khudobin.
No. 1 Star: Roberto Luongo, Florida Panthers
What a debut for Funny Bob, who stopped all 25 saves he faced to give the Florida crowd something they hadn't seen in two years: a shutout. The Panthers skated to a 2-0 win on goals from Jesse Winchester and Dmitry Kulikov.
No. 2 Star: Johan Franzen, Detroit Red Wings
Franzen led the way for the Wings in a 7-4 rout of the New Jersey Devils, with 2 goals and 2 assists. The Wings had to like what they saw out of their new-look line of Franzen, Gustav Nyquist, and David Legwand. Nyquist had a goal and three assist, and Legwand had 1 and 2. Here's Legwand's first as a Wing:
Flames 4, Islanders 3 (The SportsXchange)
(Fri, 07 Mar 2014 21:13:43 PST)
CALGARY, Alta. -- Apparently, the New York Islanders did not learn their lesson. One night after blowing a two-goal lead in a 3-2 overtime loss to the Edmonton Oilers, the Islanders again frittered away a two-goal cushion in Friday's 4-3 loss to the Calgary Flames. It was Retro Night at the Scotiabank Saddledome, but the rookies led the way for Flames. Right winger Joe Colborne scored twice in the third period, the first two-goal effort of his NHL career, while first-year centers Markus Granlund and Sean Monahan also scored for the Flames (25-31-7).
Video: Flames great Joe Nieuwendyk has No. 25 raised to rafters at Saddledome (NBC Sports)
(Fri, 07 Mar 2014 21:05:08 PST)
Played nine seasons in Calgary.
Puck Daddy Viewing Guide: Luongo debuts in Florida; Penguins vs. Ducks (Puck Daddy)
(Fri, 07 Mar 2014 15:58:41 PST)
Here is the Puck Daddy Viewing Guide: Spotlighting five things to watch for during tonight's slate of games. Make sure to stop back here for the nightly Three Stars when the games are finished.
Create-a-Caption: "Ryan Miller #39 of the St. Louis Blues eyes the puck over his head at Bridgestone Arena on March 6, 2014."
• • • • •
Preview : New York Rangers at Carolina Hurricanes, 7 p.m. ET
Preview : New Jersey Devils at Detroit Red Wings, 7:30 p.m. ET
Preview : Buffalo Sabres at Florida Panthers, 7:30 p.m. ET
Preview : New York Islanders at Calgary Flames, 9 p.m. ET
Preview : Pittsburgh Penguins at Anaheim Ducks, 10 p.m. ET
• • • • •
Five things to know about tonight's NHL games ...
1) Prodigal Lu. Roberto Luongo starts for the Panthers, something we haven't said since late 2006. It's about the only reason to watch Florida and Buffalo, two of the league's worst teams, at this point in the season.
2) Pittsburgh and Anaheim. It's a battle of division leaders -- and members of the bird family -- as the Penguins and Ducks go at it in Anaheim, but neither of these teams is really in the mood to preen right now. Anaheim is 4-5-1 in their last 10 home games. And the Penguins have surrendered 11 goals in the first three games of a five game road trip.
3) Calgary holds the fort. The Flames aren't very good, but they're pretty good at home right now. They've won 6 of their last 7 in Cowtown, and with the struggling Islanders paying them a visit Friday, they've got a good chance of making it 7 of 8.
4) Ruutu debuts for Devils. The Devils were looking to add a little grit to their top-nine and they grabbed Tuomo Ruutu from Carolina at the deadline. He makes his first appearance for New Jersey in Detroit.
5) St. Louis seeks first Rangers' win. The diminutive scorer looked like the only Ranger interested in winning his debut, so here's hoping they all join him his second time out. Maybe they can take inspiration from the addition of Raphael Diaz, who plays his first game as a Ranger?
Bold prediction: Pittsburgh gets crushed by the Ducks.
TGIF: Why Lightning fans can be upset with St. Louis (NBC Sports)
(Fri, 07 Mar 2014 13:00:33 PST)
Plus five NHL games to watch this weekend.
Goalie nods: Luongo’s first game back with Panthers, Neuvirth makes Sabres debut (NBC Sports)
(Fri, 07 Mar 2014 11:49:40 PST)
News and notes from around the blue paint...
The Flames are playing eight rookies tonight (NBC Sports)
(Fri, 07 Mar 2014 09:50:41 PST)
Hosting the Isles at the Saddledome.
Lots of Wheeling & Dealing (Rotoworld)
(Fri, 07 Mar 2014 08:53:00 PST)
Michael Finewax reports that Marian Gaborik was one of many stars to be dealt in the last week. Read it all in The Week Ahead
Weekend preview: Moulson debuts, Canucks crashing and Rangers-Wings on NBC (NBC Sports)
(Fri, 07 Mar 2014 08:17:21 PST)
Matt Moulson set to make his Minnesota debut.
Senators-Jets Preview (The Associated Press)
(Fri, 07 Mar 2014 07:14:41 PST)
The Winnipeg Jets and Ottawa Senators have done little of late to help themselves move into playoff position in their respective conferences. Both will try to avoid a third straight loss Saturday when the Senators look to remain undefeated in Winnipeg. The Jets (30-27-7) won nine of their first 11 after Paul Maurice replaced the fired Claude Noel as coach, but are 2-2-2 since and trying to avoid the longest slide under their new bench boss. Winnipeg is 10th in the Western Conference, three points behind Dallas for the final wild-card spot.
Islanders-Flames Preview (The Associated Press)
(Thu, 06 Mar 2014 23:31:37 PST)
The Calgary Flames may have seen a glimpse of their future in their first game after the trading deadline. While it's unknown if goaltender Joni Ortio will get another start Friday night, Markus Granlund will try to build on his first NHL goal during a visit from the struggling New York Islanders. Calgary (24-31-7) traded away goaltender Reto Berra and forward Lee Stempniak before Wednesday's deadline but picked up its second win in three games that night. Granlund's milestone goal in the first period helped spark the Flames toward an insurmountable three-goal lead after 40 minutes.
NHL 2014 Trade Deadline Report Card: Puck Daddy grades all 30 teams (Puck Daddy)
(Thu, 06 Mar 2014 16:06:37 PST)
There were 20 trades on 2014 NHL Deadline Day involving 38 players and around 24 draft picks. Even more players and picks moved in the days leading up to it.
So who struck gold, and who wallowed in garbage? Which teams made smart decisions, and which ones acted recklessly?
Coming up, we grade all 30 teams on their 2014 trade deadline performances.
Enjoy. Or cry. You know who you are.
Anaheim Ducks : B+
The Dustin Penner trade led to the Stephane Robidas trade, and that’s the real keeper for this deadline for the Ducks. When he’s healthy, he’ll add a veteran presence to the D-corps as well as some toughness. They solved the Viktor Fasth issue by flipping him to Edmonton for two picks, as Frederik Andersen made him expendable. A solid deadline for Bob Murray, but only a B-plus because they cleared the decks for Ryan Kesler and didn’t land him.
Boston Bruins : C
Hard to fault a division leading team for not doing much, but the Bruins could have bolstered their blue line with something more than Andrej Meszaros from the Flyers and Oilers castoff Corey Potter. Still, Meszaros has played with Zdeno Chara in the past, which makes for an intriguing connection. How did they miss on the Vanek rental again, given what the Habs paid and how he’s killed the Bruins?
Buffalo Sabres : A
The deconstruction of the Sabres continued, and the rebuild picked up steam. The Ryan Miller/Steve Ott traded yielded Jaroslav Halak, Chris Stewart, William Carrier, a first and a conditional third. GM Tim Murray is a hockey prospect nerd; if he’s in love with Hudson Fasching and Nicolas Deslauriers, acquired by the Sabres from the LA Kings for Brayden McNabb and two picks, then that should send sirens off. (Especially for Fasching, who’s just 18 and a top line player on the NCAA’s top ranked team.) Getting two second-rounders and Torrey Mitchell for Matt Moulson was, arguably, more than the Islanders will get for Vanek. Canisius College star Cory Conacher comes home via waivers. Jaroslav Halak gets turned into Michal Neuvirth, who is an NHL-caliber goalie. The war chest grew, and prospect pool deepened, and Murray had a strong debut deadline.
Calgary Flames : C-
I really wanted to just fail the ever-loving [expletive] out of Brian Burke for not being more proactive in clearing out dead weight or getting anything for the departing Mike Cammalleri, but a third for Lee Stempniak and an inexplicable second for Reto Berra pushes the grade up.
Carolina Hurricanes : D+
Let the sell-off begin … some other time. The Canes’ only move was flipping Tuomo Ruutu and the remaining two years of his contract to the Devils for Andrei Loktionov (who has some upside) and a conditional third, while picking up salary. They don’t have many expiring contracts, and obviously feel that bolder moves (Jeff Skinner?) will wait until the summer.
Chicago Blackhawks : B
Sneaky good deadline for Stan Bowman, as David Rundblad will attempt to recapture his potential with an organization that works well with defensemen. Meanwhile, Brandon Pirri is flipped for two Florida picks (a third in 2014 and a fifth in 2016). Doesn’t address the second-line center conundrum, but again, they won a Cup with Handzus as a second pivot, so …
Colorado Avalanche : C
We’ll just go ahead and assume the Avalanche goaltending braintrust sees something in Reto Berra that would warrant a second-rounder to the Flames and anointing him as the team’s goalie insurance policy if J.S. Giguere’s back doesn’t hold up. Because we don’t.
Columbus Blue Jackets : B
Considering the rental market, getting the well-traveled Matt Frattin, a 2014 or 2015 second-round pick and a conditional third-round pick (if the Kings win a playoff round or if they sign him) for Marian Gaborik is doing pretty well. Especially since the second is the Leafs’ pick and the third is the Oilers’. Snagging Nick Schultz for a fifth-rounder is a nice depth move too. The grade gets knocked down a peg for their inability to get Kesler on the hook.
Dallas Stars : C+
Jim Nill was fairly firm in saying the Stars weren’t going in on rentals, despite their playoff contention. Tim Thomas technically is one, but he’s such a nice upgrade at the goalie spot (for Dan Ellis) that they couldn’t pass it up. The conditional fourth-rounder for Stephane Robidas could have been a little higher, but given his injury this season maybe that was the ceiling.
Detroit Red Wings : B+
David Legwand is a great piece: Local guy, can roll with the top-liners, plays defense to a Babcockian standard. The Red Wings surrendered a heck of a prospect for him in Jarnkrok, but one can see Legwand really thrive in this situation.
Edmonton Oilers : C+
An intriguing deadline for the Oilers. Can Viktor Fasth work with Ben Scrivens to form a strong goaltending battery for the Oil next season? Was a fifth and a third the best the Oilers could do for Ales Hemsky? The heavy lifting will be in the summer, obviously.
Florida Panthers : A-
Meet the next phase of the franchise. Finally deciding to dive into the Roberto Luongo pool, the Panthers surrendered never-will-be (at least in Florida) goalie Jacob Markstrom and Shawn Matthias for Lu, with Vancouver retaining salary. How many years does he have left? Hopefully enough where Luongo is still a franchise goalie when the Panthers’ young stars are blossoming. Also traded a third and a fifth (in 2016) to Chicago for Brandon Pirri. (Dale Tallon and a trade with Chicago? NO WAY.) Then they snagged a third in 2015 and a fifth in 2014 from the Penguins for Marcel Goc, and flipped Tim Thomas for Dan Ellis.
Los Angeles Kings : B+
How will Marian Gaborik and Darryl Sutter coexist? That’s the prevailing question about the trade that saw LA ship Matt Frattin, a 2014 or 2015 second rounder and a conditional third to the Blue Jackets. His speed will be an asset; one hopes his goal-scoring touch returns. The Kings made a couple of other minor moves, but Gaborik will have the most impact.
Minnesota Wild : A
Matt Moulson is a shrewd pick up for this team, bringing goal-scoring, character and more shootout prowess to the Wild. The cost was high for a rental – Torrey Mitchell and two second-rounders – but Cody McCormick comes over as well. Some might scoff at the Bryzgalov move given other goalies available, but he’s a solid addition to an unpredictable goaltending situation. Although please, no one tell him of all the bears in Minnesota …
Montreal Canadiens : A+
Even if Vanek doesn’t work … even if the Habs fail in their playoff quest and he leaves … this was a major coup for GM Marc Bergevin at a time when the team’s status – contender or building to be one – was in question. At this point, Sebastian Collberg and a conditional second is a pittance for one of the league’s most dynamic offensive players. Mike Weaver’s a nice addition to the blue line, and Devan Dubnyk for “future considerations” is a nice insurance policy.
Nashville Predators: B+
Patrick Eaves, Calle Jarnkrok and a conditional third for David Legwand is a nice return. Guess all that “YOU’LL HAVE TO PRY LEGWAND FROM MY COLD DEAD HANDS” posturing from David Poile worked. Jarnkrok is the centerpiece, and Poile expects he’ll challenge for a gig next season. If he stays in North America, that is.
New Jersey Devils : B
The big Martin Brodeur drama ended with him still a New Jersey Devil, as Lou Lamoriello refused to be the one who ended Marty’s time in Jersey. (That'll be up to Marty this summer.) Tuomo Ruutu brings some offense, some shootout prowess and two contract years; but it’s not the worst deal with Andrei Loktionov and a conditional third going to the Carolina Hurricanes, who pick up some of Ruutu’s salary.
New York Islanders : D+
As of this writing, Garth Snow is still dodging the tomatoes being thrown at him by disgruntled Islanders fans for getting winger Sebastian Collberg, speedy but no sure-thing, and a conditional third for Thomas Vanek, allegedly one of the hottest commodities among the deadline rentals. The return for defenseman Andrew MacDonald was more than respectable: 2014 third-rounder, 2015 second-rounder and center Matt Mangene.
New York Rangers : B+
Marty St. Louis fell into their laps thanks to his decision to leave the Lightning in-season to (finally) move to New York. Ryan Callahan fell out of favor due to his contract demands. There’s no question St. Louis makes the Rangers a more dangerous team up front and could click with Brad Richards again. But on a day when few first-round picks were moved, to give one up for a guy who wanted to leave Tampa and had some smoldering bridges in his rearview mirror is overpayment. Raphael Diaz comes over from the Canucks for a fifth-rounder as well.
Ottawa Senators: B+
Ales Hemsky is a nice move, and it’ll be interesting to see how he thrives with an increased offensive role and a contract to play for. (Or, in general, it’ll be interesting to watch him be the latest player attempting to find chemistry with Jason Spezza, assuming they’re paired.)
Philadelphia Flyers : B
Andrew MacDonald has his detractors but I think he’ll fit well with the Flyers, although they anted up plenty for him – a third, a second and a prospect. Remember, this is just for the deadline, not for when they overpay him. They picked up a third from the Bruins for Andrej Meszaros. Ryan Kesler didn’t happen, but perhaps the Flyers were just trying to drive up the Penguins’ price for him.
Phoenix Coyotes : B
Is there a better landing place for Martin Erat than with Martin Hanzal and Radim Vrbata? The Coyotes shipped Rusty Klesla, Chris Brown and a 2015 fourth to the Capitals for Erat and John Mitchell. They also found a taker from David Rundblad, getting a second from the Chicago Blackhawks for him and Mattieu Brisebois. Grade gets knocked down a tad as the Coyotes might have needed a bit more of a roster shakeup than they received.
Pittsburgh Penguins : C
No Ryan Kesler, no puck-moving defenseman to help fill the void left by Kris Letang. But Marcel Goc is a nice addition as a depth center. And hey, Lee Stempniak, so that’s something.
San Jose Sharks : B
They didn’t do anything, which means they didn’t dabble in the dark arts of a Devin Setoguchi reunion. But the does the fact they didn’t add a scoring winger – a need for sure – mean Tomas Hertl’s headed back? (The ‘B’ by the way is a default grade. I hate incompletes.)
St. Louis Blues : A-
The Ryan Miller trade is a game-changer for the Western Conference, solidifying the position and giving the Blues a goalie that can win a series on his own. Steve Ott’s a great faceoff guy and another pain-in-the-ass on the Blues’ roster. Now the real question: Will Miller be a Blue next season?
Tampa Bay Lightning : A-
For a GM whose hands were tied by a captain that requested a trade in-season to only one other team in the NHL, to snag Ryan Callahan, a first-rounder and a second-rounder that could become another first for Marty St. Louis was brilliant.
Toronto Maple Leafs : B
All’s quiet on the Maple Leaf front. Dave Nonis said the cost was too high to do business on deadline day. No word if he had his tie undone when he said it.
Vancouver Canucks : C
This is a really tricky one. GM Mike Gillis deserves credit for clearing out Luongo’s contract and getting two NHL players back for him in Shawn Matthias and Jacob Markstrom, when the alternative was a buyout. And Ryan Kesler wasn’t traded, which helps Vancouver in their playoff push and maybe generates a larger market for him in the summer. On the other hand, Gillis made such a hash out of the goaltending situation and the Kesler trade demand is just going to keep lingering.
Washington Capitals : B+
Dustin Penner brings postseason scoring prowess and a jovial comportment to a team that needs both. Martin Erat’s trade was addition by subtraction. Jaroslav Halak also clears out a mopey Cap (Michal Neuvirth) while bringing in a goalie that will push, or supplant, Braden Holtby. A good deadline for George McPhee … although it did nothing to address the blue line.
Winnipeg Jets : D
For all that talk about being reshaping the roster and/or adding pieces for a very real playoff push, the Jets did nothing outside of resigning Mark Stuart. And that’s despite losing Mark Scheifele to injury in the same week. Kevin Cheveldayoff didn’t part with prospects and didn’t shed any of his own pending UFAs. These are the best fans in the NHL. Give them something to cheer for, will you please?