A few tidbits I’ve been able to gather today Sources tell me Leafs forward Nik Antropov is not on the Penguins radar, he is not seen as a good fit. Columbus, Boston, Florida, Buffalo, Chicago, and LA are among the teams that are currently pursuing Antropov. Check out the NHL Trade Deadline Chart for the rest. The Chicago Sun-Times reports, the Chicago Blackhawks and left winger Martin Havlat have conducted discussions on a long-term extension. I’m hearing a two-three year deal worth $4 million per season has been discussed. Havlat is in the last year of a 3 year – $18 million deal he signed three seasons ago. The surging Kings and Panthers along with the Buffalo Sabres are among the most active teams in trade talks right now. If the Panthers are going to move Nathan Horton it won’t be until the draft. Sharks enforcer Jody Shelley (lower bodyRead More »
Pittsburgh Penguins star forward Sidney Crosby missed today’s morning skate as the Penguins prepare to face off against the San Jose Sharks tonight. Crosby (illness) is expected to be in the lineup tonight. Crosby is expected to center Pascal Dupuis and Tyler Kennedy in tonight’s game Marc Andre Fleury will start in goal As expected Sergei Gonchar received clearance to return to the lineup this morning. Gonchar was on the ice for the Penguins 10:30 a.m. morning skate. Gonchar will not play today but has not been ruled out of the lineup for Saturday. The Gonchar watch begins RW Miroslav Satan who played less than 10 minutes against the Detroit Red Wings, skated with the Penguins third line in the morning skate and will be in the lineup tonight. The San Jose Sharks will have an optional skate at 11:30 a.m.. Only about eight players are expected to skate.
The Race for the Playoffs Eastern Conference 6-10 6. New York Rangers | 54 GP | 63 PTS | 7. Buffalo Sabres | 54 GP | 62 PTS | 8. Florida Panthers | 53 GP | 60 PTS | 9. Carolina Hurricanes | 54 GP | 59 PTS | 10. Pittsburgh Penguins | 53 GP | 57 PTS | The Florida Panthers have won five out of seven and beat the Toronto Maple Leafs 5-4¬†in overtime Tuesday night to jump ahead of the Carolina Hurricanes and move into eighth place in the Eastern Conference with 60 pts. They’re a team that won‚Äôt be going away. The Penguins meet the Panthers three more times this season. The Panthers currently have two games in hand on the Penguins Players Association eyes return to ESPN Has anyone noticed how much more Hockey coverage ESPN has now compared to last year. In recent weeksRead More »
A few Practice notes from today — Ruslan Fedotenko has suffered a minor set back and will be sidelined for another 7-10 days. The initial diagnosis was 4-6 weeks but it was believed last week that he was going to return this week against the Sharks or against the Leafs on Saturday. Luca Caputi practiced today and will be in the lineup tomorrow. Will have more info on today’s practice in a bit. Earlier in the day it was Reported the Edmonton Oilers have made a strong push to lure Jaromir Jagr to Edmonton this season. There‚Äôs talk that the two sides were discussing a two year deal worth $14 million but David Staples of the Edmonton Journal now reports Kevin Lowe has indicated Jagr is stuck in Russia for the rest of the season. Jagr has 25 goals and 51 points in 48 games, for Omsk of the KontinentalRead More »
Sergei Gonchar who I reported two weeks ago was three weeks ahead of schedule from his early March target date, will see doctor Charles Burke on Wednesday and is expected to receive clearance to return to the lineup. Gonchar will not be in the lineup on Wednesday but is less than 10 days away from returning, sources have confirmed to Inside Pittsburgh Sports. I’m still sticking to my February 19th prediction from a few weeks ago but I would not be surprised if Gonchar returned before the 19th.
Since the Penguins 6 game winning streak in the month of November ended at the hands of the Minnesota Wild on Tuesday, November 18th, 2008 (2-1 SO loss), the Penguins are 15-20-3 after begining the season 11-4-2. It can be argued that inconsistent goaltending, lack of toughness, wrong personnel are all legitimate reasons for the Penguins struggles this season. One major area of concern has been the Penguins power play (16.7%) and the Penguins struggling power play comes in as one of the main reasons the Penguins are out of the top eight in the Eastern Conference right now In the Penguins 20 regulation losses since they began the season 11-4-2, the Penguins power play is a woeful 8-88. Inside Look at the Numbers
With a reluctance to actively listen to offers for Jordan Staal, Penguins defenseman Ryan Whitney is believed to be the Penguins biggest asset in their attempt to acquire a top line winger. With Four years – $16 million remaining on his contract, and only 1 goal in 22 games to go along with a -12 plus/minus rating, Whitney‚Äôs value has never been lower.
Hossa expects loud boos from Penguins fans: Red Wings forward Marian Hossa who turned down a 7 year – $52 million from the Penguins this past summer¬†expects fans at Mellon Arena to be very loud when he touches the puck Sunday afternoon. Hossa speaking to the Toronto Sun had this to say on Saturday; “It will be loud,” Hossa acknowledged yesterday. “And when I touch the puck, it will be louder. That’s what I’m expecting. I try not to think about it — just focus on my game and do my stuff. “I had a great time in Pittsburgh. There are great fans in Pittsburgh, a sellout every night.” Saturday Roundup: Wings defeat Oilers 8-3 Head to Head Comparison Detroit Red Wings marquee Free Agent Signing 1. RW Marian Hossa¬†| 1 year – $7.45 million | | 29 goals – 25 assists – 54 points| Pittsburgh Penguins marquee Free AgentRead More »
Evgeni Malkin leads the NHL with (24 goals ‚Äì 56 assists ‚Äì 80 points) and is a +19. Despite leading the NHL in the points, Malkin is not even in the top 3 when it comes to the M.V.P. discussion. For him to get into the top three by the end of the season, he will have to get the Penguins into playoffs and there‚Äôs been talk he will have to get into the 40 goal plateau. A lot of experts who have votes look at goals, Ovechkin and Parise are going to easily top 40. Is it right to overlook the assists Malkin is putting up? No it‚Äôs not but he‚Äôs going to need at least 40-43 goals to push Ovechkin who seems to be most people‚Äôs front runner, even though Malkin leads Ovechkin by 12 points in the scoring race. Kris Letang is an untouchable at the tradeRead More »
In a move that has been expected to happen for the past couple weeks, today the Pittsburgh Penguins have re-assigned defenseman Alex Goligoski to the Wilkes-Barre/Scranton Penguins of the American Hockey League In 44 games this season, Goligoski leads all Penguins defensemen in points, registering 20 points (six goals, 14 assists) along with a plus-five rating. Goligoski, 23, has been a frequent scratch since Ryan Whitney returned to the lineup at the end of December.