Stephen Weiss out for the season

 

Florida Panthers center Stephen Weiss is out for the season as the pending free agent will have season ending wrist injury. The Weiss injury is blow for the Panthers and center starved teams in pursuit of Weiss. Weiss was a great trade chip for the Panthers and they have now lost out on moving him for a likely first round pick. The New York Rangers had Weiss at the top of their wishlist.

Game Day Buzz: Despite lack of role with team, Penguins would be better served to hold onto Jeffrey

 

GAME DAY BUZZ Dustin Jeffrey is a well mannered person who will never publicly say this but you can bet he would not have minded being in Eric Tangradi’s shoes last week and being traded to another team that planned on giving him a better opportunity and regular role in the lineup than he’s getting with the Penguins. Jeffrey has been scratched for 13 of 17 games this season but will return to the lineup tonight in place of Joe Vitale who will be a healthy scratch. With the way he’s viewed by the coaching staff, Jeffrey will probably be back in the press box Sunday night, regardless of how he plays tonight. That’s just how it’s gone for him. Aside from his poor performance against Philadelphia in the season opener on Jan 19, Jeffrey has played well this season and was one of the Penguins best forwards against theRead More »

Pens – Panthers Game Day Buzz: Good opportunity to start Johnson in goal

 

Penguins (45-25-8, 98 pts) @ Panthers (29-37-12, 70 pts) Despite losing two straight games, the Philadelphia Flyers remain in striking distance for the Pittsburgh Penguins. A longshot to say the least but Pittsburgh only trails Philadelphia by four points and each team has 4 games remaining. The Penguins have a favorable schedule the rest of the way with games against non-playoff teams Florida, New Jersey, New York Islanders and the Atlanta Thrashers. However, the Penguins worries is not catching Philadelphia but holding off the Tampa Bay Lightning for the No.4 seed in the East. In reality the division title is not that important but what’s important is for the Penguins to gain some momentum going into the playoffs. Right now they have none. — Tonight against the Florida Panthers is a good opportunity for Brent Johnson (11-5-3) to get the start in goal. Johnson is 5-1 in his last 6Read More »

Fleury leads Penguins to NHL record 4th straight shootout victory

 

Pittsburgh 2 – Florida 1 (SO) The Pittsburgh Penguins played in their fourth straight shootout and were victorious for the fourth straight game. Marc Andre Fleury made 37 saves and Ben Lovejoy scored in regulation, while Alex Kovalev, James Neal scored in the shootout, leading Pittsburgh to a 2-1 victory over the Florida Panthers on Sunday afternoon at the Consol Energy Center. Fleury was 2-for-2 in the shootout, stopping Mike Santorelli and Niclas Bergfors and Alex Kovalev, the Penguins 2nd shooter, scored the decisive goal, a beautiful one, as Pittsburgh improved to 9-2-2 in their last 13 games. Fleury earned his 34th victory of the season and is 6-2-0 in his last 8 starts. Fleury set a franchise record today with a shutout streak of 150:13. Jocelyn Thiabault held the previous franchise record of 136:13. The Panthers whose playoff hopes were officially dashed on Friday night, came to play andRead More »

NHL Rumors Saturday: Flyers, Gonchar, Rangers, Higgins/Pens

 

NHL RUMOR SATURDAY Flyers looking to Add: The Philadelphia Flyers lead the Eastern Conference with 71 points and arguably have the most depth in the National Hockey League. Philadelphia ranks 1st in the league in goals per game at 3.46 and are tied for a league-high with 8 players scoring 10 or more goals. Despite offensive depth that few teams if any can match, the Flyers are actively exploring the market for a top-9 forward. They made a strong run at New Jersey’s Jamie Langenbrunner and reportedly have serious interest in Hurricanes forward Erik Cole who could become available next month. The Flyers are a dangerous team leading up to the trade deadline because they can take on a cap hit of almost $3.7 million, after putting Matt Walker ($1.7 million cap hit) on waivers. They are going to have the ability to add. Will Sens be able to moveRead More »

Red Wings having productive off-season; Updates on Marleau, Horton

 

Red Wings having productive off-season While teams such as the Pittsburgh Penguins are having difficulties re-signing their own pending free agents, the Detroit Red Wings have had a very productive off-season. The Red Wings took care of their top priority, re-signing defenseman Nicklas Lidstrom to a one year deal worth $6.2 million. GM Ken Holland then locked up wingers Todd Bertuzzi and Tomas Holmstrom to two year deals with both players having cap hits under $2 million per season. Detroit has also boasted their winger situation going into next season with the return of 26 year old winger Jiri Hudler. Most importantly Red Wings owner Mike Ilitch gave five year extensions to Holland and assistant GM Jim Nill this week. The Red Wings have approximately $53 million committed to 16 players. The salary cap is expected to be in the $58-$59 million range. Marleau Sweepstakes Free agency is less thanRead More »

Sunday’s NHL Rumor Mill

 

Trade freeze ends at 11:59 p.m. *Tom Reed of the Columbus Dispatch reports, “Blue Jackets general manager Scott Howson and the agent for unrestricted free agent Raffi Torres spoke during the Olympic break and were unable to reach an agreement on a contract extension, the Dispatch has learned. Torres almost certainly will be dealt by Wednesday’s trade deadline.” League sources tell TIOPS, tha Torres is drawing significant interest from several teams including the Pittsburgh Penguins, Boston Bruins and Los Angeles Kings. Meanwhile, Reed also reports that “unrestricted free agent defenseman Milan Jurcina is attracting as much interest as Torres.” The Blue Jackets are believed to be seeking a 3rd round pick for Jurcina. *The Boston Globe reports, “the Bruins have kicked the tires on Teemu Selanne, the 39-year-old Anaheim Ducks right wing.” However, those close to Selanne indicate he’s going nowhere. The Bruins have been highly involved in trade talksRead More »

Trade Buzz: Panthers ready to overhaul roster

 

The Florida Panthers have entered sell mode following Thursday night’s 3-0 loss to the Vancouver Canucks. The Panthers have lost 5 of 6 games and GM Randy Sexton told the Miami Herald today that he looking to make deals, stating that no player, including Tomas Vokoun, David Booth and Nathan Horton is off limits in trade talks. Sexton told the Miami Herald, “There’s no player off limits. There are players we’d like to keep, but at the end of the day Wayne Gretzky was traded. We have to get better and get our team to the point where we want it to be. Sometimes you have to make hard decisions.” The Panthers have been active in trade talks of late and have been among several teams expressing interest in Penguins defenseman Kris Letang. However, Pittsburgh hasn’t given much though to any inquiries at this point on Letang. With the PanthersRead More »

Salary cap to increase by $2 million?; Penguins won’t negotiate with Gonchar after trade deadline

 

Latest Buzz from BOG Meetings Salary Cap could increase by $1.5-$2 million NHL commissioner Gary Bettman met with general managers and owners on Tuesday at the Board of Governors meetings and projections for next years salary cap has the cap in the $56.8 – $58.5 million range . The league does not expect a decrease and early projections show the possibility of even a $1.5-$2 million increase at the max. The projections now set the stage for general managers to begin preparations for next season. The Canadian franchises are the markets that carry the salary cap. They make up for teams like Phoenix, Florida and Atlanta which don’t bring in adequate revenues. It’s astounding that the league is against relocating a team like Phoenix to Canada. It’s time for the league to admit their mistake and do what’s best for the entire league. Cap projections set stage for Gonchar negotiationsRead More »

Inside the NHL: Capitals, Penguins, Devils the class of the East

 

Devils, Capitals, Penguins & the rest? Through the first two months of the season, the Washington Capitals, Pittsburgh Penguins and New Jersey Devils have established themselves as the class of the Eastern Conference. The high-octane Capitals have a conference leading 44 points and are the highest scoring team in the NHL with 111 goals. Despite a number of injuries, the defending Stanley Cup champions have picked up right where they left off and have jumped out to a 20-10-1 record through 31 games. The Capitals and Penguins are right where many expected them to be but the New Jersey Devils? In just 28 games, the Devils are 20-7-1 tied for first in the Atlantic Division. In the first year of his second stint in New Jersey, head coach Jacques Lemaire has the Devils playing dominant hockey. Like the Penguins, the Devils have been hit with a number of injuries butRead More »