I hope all of our readers and members in the Calgary area are safe and sound with all of the madness that has been going on there over the past few days.
Dave Tippett is officially back in Phoenix for five years – his contract is worth $2 million per season, and apparently has an out clause each year if he doesn’t like where the team is located (assuming they move/relocate).
A very positive/inspiring story heading into the weekend…
The DobberHockey community has stepped up in a very charitable way – check out some details on a great initiative spearheaded by Shoeless.
Have a column breaking down the Tortorella/AV hirings from a fantasy perspective – just awaiting on confirmation of the Tortorella move (which is as good as done). Wherever you stand on the Canucks (mostly hate, I know) or Tortorella (very mixed) – it will be must-watch hockey/press conferences next year.
Apparently several Canucks voiced the fact that they wanted Tortorella hired – someone to provide a kick in the pants and some added motivation. This is a risky move by Mike Gillis, and I imagine Tortorella has agreed to tone down or at least be more measured with his media interactions.
Enjoy Game 5 tonight. Carl “the Yeti” Soderberg will be making an appearance for the Bruins (don’t blink or you may miss him).
According to Pierre LeBrun, there are five teams in the mix for Jonathan Bernier.
The Flyers (assuming Bryzgalov is bought out)
The Leafs (not really sure why… Reimer is a more proven and arguably a better goaltender)
The Panthers (ditto Markstrom – perhaps they want some competition?)
NY Islanders (make a lot of sense)
Minnesota Wild (make a lot of sense)
I think the Islanders are the most logical trading partner for LA with Bernier. Could the Kings get Nino Niederreiter in return?
More on Bernier – apparently the Leafs have made a "strong bid" for Bernier. What do the Kings need? Defensemen? Gardiner won't be moved here. I assume Scrivens will be on his way to LA (or somewhere else in a separate trade).
Here are the pros and cons of re-signing Damien Brunner, from a Detroit perspective.
There are several factors in his favor: First and foremost, he scored in the playoffs. Many offensive players have quiet stretches during the regular season, and that's easily forgiven if he delivers when it counts most.
Second, Brunner never had gone through anything like the hectic pace of the NHL, a pace that was exacerbated when the lockout squeezed 48 games into 99 days. Nor was he accustomed to the travel, which was brutal starting in mid-March.
Casey Cizikas checks in at #6 on the top 25 Islanders under 25 – does he have more upside than many give him credit for?
Expectations for Cizikas are for a good third- or fourth-line forward who can be dogged on the forecheck, contribute the odd goal, take penalty kill time, and change the tone of games when other lines are stuck in neutral.
Cizikas managed all of that in 2012-13 and continued it in the playoffs while logging under 11 minutes of TOI per game throughout the season. His big goal against the Panthers, which we went into in a little too much detail, was an example of when a zealous forecheck pays off.
Sounds likely that we will see Mats Zuccarello back in the NHL with New York for another two or three years.