Greg Wyshynski at Puck Daddy 17 hrs ago
The Edmonton Oilers dropped defenseman Nikita Nikitin on waivers on Saturday, in a reminder that new executives can clean up old messes with a clear conscience.
Please recall the Oilers acquiring Nikitin’s negotiating rights from the Columbus Blue Jackets in June 2014, a move made under former general manager Craig MacTavish and his assistant GM Scott Howson, who acquired Nikitin from the St. Louis Blues in 2011 as GM of the Jackets.
MacTavish is gone. GM Peter Chiarelli has nothing to prove in having someone else’s $4.5-million boondoggle on the roster, so the Oilers popped him on waivers after an underwhelming preseason.
There were talks between the Oilers and Chicago Blackhawks about a Nikitin and Bryan Bickell swap; it never amounted to anything, and both players hit waivers (Bickell’s already passed through).
Greg Wyshynski at Puck Daddy 1 day ago
NEW YORK – Rick Nash of the New York Rangers waited for the large line of fans, braving a steady rain, to make their way over for a photo op. Smile for the camera, sell a few products – such is life for a hockey star with an endorsement deal.
Even if it’s an endorsement deal his nearly one-year-old son might enjoy more than Nash would.
“All the other endorsements go out the window, and you get the Playmobil one. That’s what happens when you have a little one,” he said.
Nash was at the NHL Store in Manhattan on Thursday pushing the new Playmobil NHL line.
Basically, it’s like a table hockey game for wee ones. The NHL Hockey Arena ($59.99) houses little players and goalies from Original Six teams. Kids hold the players with their hands on the rink, and operate a lever to swing the player’s stick to take shots. A joystick controls the goalie to make saves.
It’s all super cute.
Even if you have to buy the referee package to get the Stanley Cup:
Nash used to play table hockey a young Ontario boy. “This one’s almost an upgrade, with the players actually on the ice,” he said.
USA vs. Russia?
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The New York Islanders debut in Brooklyn this season, and they’re bringing along some comforts from the Nassau Coliseum. The old organ. The old organist. The PA announcer. A group of legendary players that will act as team ambassadors.
Something that wasn’t going to relocate with them? The deafening goal horn. Barclays Center debuted a new horn during the preseason, inspired by the sound of a subway train’s horn.
At best, it was a misguided tribute to the fact that the Islanders’ new arena is more accessible by mass transit.
At worst, it sounded like a mosquito blowing into a party favor.
“I think we’ve been very sensitive to the traditions of Islanders hockey,” said CEO Brett Yormark via The Michael Kay Show on Thursday. “At the same time, we must broaden the fan base. We must reach out to Brooklynites and areas around Brooklyn to make this move viable.”
And as you know, there’s nothing New Yorkers like to hear more than the squealing horn of an oncoming subway train vibrating inside their ears.
Imagine you’re a professional hockey coach.
Your team missed the playoffs, by only some fault of your own, for the first time on your watch, a span of eight seasons. Your general manager was fired for this failure. The new general manager takes two weeks to decide your fate, despite having been the assistant general manager under the previous regime. You admit to that the waiting game was excruciating, especially when it seemed all was well following a multi-year contract extension.
Now, if anyone claimed you were on “the hot seat” in light of these circumstances, would you bristle? Would you say it was a mischaracterization of the situation at hand?
No? Well, Cam Neely thinks differently.
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NEW YORK – The National Hockey League has “no desire” to engage in settlement discussions with the players involved in a class action lawsuit that alleges negligence and fraud by the League regarding concussions.
An excerpt from a League memo, distributed to the Board of Governors at their meeting this week in New York and acquired by Yahoo Sports, makes it clear that the NHL feels there is no "smoking gun" that gives the plaintiffs an advantage in the civil case or a path to settlement like in the National Football League’s concussion suit.
From the internal NHL memo:
“While recent signals suggest plaintiffs are anxious to begin settlement discussions (similar to what transpired in the NFL), we have indicated to them no desire to engage in such discussions, primarily because we feel so strongly in the merits of our case and the leadership role (among all sports leagues) we have taken in the study, prevention, diagnosis and management of concussions.
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To succeed in the National Hockey League, your body must be a well-maintained temple of stamina, strength and nutrition.
But NHL players are also humans with stomachs and pleasure centers in their brains, so the occasional dabbling in junk food and sweets is to be expected during the season.
We spoke with Erik Karlsson of the Ottawa Senators, Tuukka Rask of the Boston Bruins, James van Riemsdyk of the Toronto Maple Leafs, Ryan Suter of the Minnesota Wild and Duncan Keith of the Chicago Blackhawks about their food guilty pleasures.
Spoiler: None of them mentioned anything about visiting the same hot dog stand every day.
Produced by Florent Conti/Yahoo Sports Canada
When thinking about the 2015-16 Washington Capitals, there are many questions about their status as a true contender in the Eastern Conference, ranging from the chemistry in lines to their lack of playoff success to GREAT LASSIE’S GHOST LOOK AT HOW ADORABLE THOSE FRIGGIN’ PUPPIES ARE.
Courtesy of Russian Machine Never Breaks and photographer Amanda Bowen, here are the latest batch of behind the scenes photos from the Capitals' annual Canine Calendar, benefitting Homeward Trails’ Animal Rescue.
That's goalie Braden Holtby, celebrating St. Patrick's Day (unconfirmed).
We imagine the conversation between T.J. Oshie and the Capitals went something like this:
"Welcome to the team, T.J. We expect you'll have a chance to play with Alex Ovechkin and Nicklas Backstrom this season, lifting you to career bests in points and goals."
"Sure, whatever. Now, what about that dog calendar you guys do?"
We'll leave it to you to caption this one ...
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David Booth’s participation in Florida Panthers camp on a professional tryout offer was one of the most intriguing storylines of the preseason, if only because it was an attempt to prove you can go home again (after flaming out with the Vancouver Canucks and Toronto Maple Leafs).
Booth was drafted in the second round of the 2004 NHL Draft by the Panthers, and spent the first six years of his career there. He hit 31 goals in 2008-09. He’s never come within sniffing distance of that pace since.
The 30-year-old left wing tried to make a come back with the Panthers in camp, hoping to provide the kind of sage veteran advice he received as a young player.
"When I heard Florida was offering I thought it was such a good opportunity. You want to earn a spot and help the young kids out because I'll never forget when I was coming in here, [veterans] Joe Nieuwendyk, Gary Roberts, Ed Belfour; those guys were so encouraging to me and helped my confidence and transition to the NHL,” he said.
Here’s Booth to George Richards of the Miami Herald:
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When Edmonton Oilers winger Jordan Eberle was injured in Tuesday night’s exhibition game vs. the Arizona Coyotes, the initial reaction was that it could be something significant.
Then it was downgraded to “day to day” with further evaluation, even as Eberle had his arm in a sling after the game following an awkward hit into the end boards from Kyle Chipchura.
On Wednesday, we were back at “significant”: Eberle will miss 4-6 weeks with a shoulder injury, as confirmed by the Oilers.
Here's the play:
Eberle with what appears to be a shoulder injury sustained behind the net, left the bench shortly after&didn't return pic.twitter.com/g8OsLUXQgg
Eberle’s a 60-point winger whose overall game won’t be replaced. So what do the Oilers do in the short-term for a winger to play with Ryan Nugent-Hopkins?
Leon Draisaitl. The big German has had success at right wing in camp, and spent a lot of time with Hall and McDavid. He could easily find himself starting there when Game 1 of the regular season rolls around.
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It's a Wednesday edition of Marek vs. Wyshynski beginning at 1 p.m. ET/10 a.m., and we're talking about the following and more.
Special Guest Star: Flames GM Brad Treliving joins us to talk about goalie controversies and the upcoming season.
• NHL expansion talk.
• Jordan Eberle hurt.
• Lou vs. Leafs
• Hockey News and Views
Question of the Day: We're GOING POSTAL! Ask us anything! Email email@example.com or hit us on Twitter with the hashtag #MvsW to @wyshynski or @jeffmarek. Click here for the Sportsnet live stream or click the play button above!