Posted by Adam Bierenbaum on 29th June 2011
Its Official, Chris Drury is no longer a New York Ranger. His buyout with the Rangers becomes official Wednesday, the New York Post reported, ending a four-year stint in New York for the 34-year-old. “It was a great honor and privilege to be a New York Ranger for the past four years, and I will always be grateful for the opportunity to fulfill that childhood dream,” Drury said in a statement that was emailed to The Post. “I would also like to thank Ranger fans. They always inspired me to do the best I could in whatever role I was asked to play. Playing before them in the Garden was a thrill of a lifetime. I wish all the fans and the entire Ranger organization the best of luck in the future.”
Drury will receive $3.333 million to buy out the final year of his five-year, $35.25 million contract with the Rangers, according to The Post. He could have been declared medically unable to perform for the final season and received his full $5 million salary, but Drury wants to continue his career and will become an unrestricted free agent, the newspaper reported.
Drury was often criticized for not living up to his immense contract, even during the first two years when he did exactly what was expected of him. Yes, he lost a significant step in the third year of his tenure, and then it got even worse last season, but that’s nothing to hold against him. Remember that he allowed this buyout to happen today, that means something, that’s something a captain would do for his team. Though its always sad to loose one of the leaders on your team, this move helps the Rangers out immensely heading into Friday’s free agency.
They will save $3.3 million this off season (which is a huge because Wade Redden’s cap hit returns), money they can use to go after Brad Richards or sign some of their own free agents. Anyway you look at it, the extra flexibility is a very good thing.
With Drury gone, it now looks like Ryan Callahan will be named the next captain of the Rangers. Callahan perfectly represents what this Rangers team stands for. Today also marks another chapter in Glen Sather and the New York Rangers attempts to make this a younger, faster and more exciting team. Sather has done a great job so far taking care of the mistakes that he made along the way and is slowly turning this young team into a competitor.
Tags: Chris Drury, New York Rangers
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Posted by Adam Bierenbaum on 29th June 2011
Today is the day that Jaromir Jagr has to decide if he wants to make a return to the NHL, a league he used to dominate. The Pittsburgh Penguins have offered the 39 year old a one-year deal worth a reported 2 million dollars, and he has until today to decide if he wants to return to the team that drafted him in 1990. Penguins GM Ray Shero spoke on Tuesday about the possible deal and said, “We feel from the information we have and after seeing him at world championships, that he’s a guy who might be able to help us this coming season.”
The Czech native has spent the past three years playing in Russia’s Kontinental Hockey League where he has registered 66 goals and 146 points. Jagr and his agent, former NHL player Petr Svoboda, have expressed interest in a return to the NHL and that the Penguins and Detroit Red Wings are teams Jagr was interested in, among others. “He was an icon in Pittsburgh,” Shero said “We’d like to see him finish his career here.” Though Jagr cant sign with a team until Friday, he can tell the Penguins of his plans anytime before then. Jagr played 17 seasons in the NHL, 11 with Pittsburgh. If he returns to the NHL, his 1,599 career points would be the most among active players. Jagr played his first 11 seasons in Pittsburgh, winning the Stanley Cup twice, the Hart Trophy once, the Art Ross Trophy five times and the Lester B. Pearson Award twice. He was a finalist for the Hart Trophy five times, including in 2006 with the New York Rangers.
Tags: Jaromir Jagr, Pittsburgh Penguins
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Posted by Adam Bierenbaum on 7th June 2011
I never realized how passionate Canadians were about their hockey, until I really looked into some articles on the impact of Winnipeg getting its hockey team back. For starters, the franchise sold out its allotment of 13,000 season tickets in just 17 minutes, but the company said the online queue was full in two minutes. The remaining 15 minutes were required to process the sales. That’s absolutely crazy, 2 Minutes to sell out season tickets, 2 minutes! Then I stumbled on the following ads that prove just how crazy/passionate/desperate these fans are for tickets. How much would you pay for tickets? For these people the sky’s the limit apparently. For the record these are real ads that were posted on Kijiji (Basically a Canadian Craigslist.)
1. “Two seats to the first Jets game in (exchange) for the naming rights on my first born son! Will include the middle name of my second and third child as well.”
2. “I have been working in childcare for 12 years and have now opened my own home childcare. I currently have one spot available and would like to offer free full time or part time childcare in exchange for a pair of season tickets or portion of. This is a $600-$800/month value depending on the age of the child.”
3. “Will trade 2001 Audi A4 Quattro all-wheel drive for Jets season tickets. Car is fully loaded with leather seats.”
4. “I am a professional accountant who would be willing to assist any individuals or businesses with your finances, taxes, book-keeping, budgeting etc, in exchange for two seats for four or five various games or a permanent share in season tickets. I will gladly pay into the deposit share if you’d like.”
5. “I had no luck with the pre-sale, so I’m looking to purchase two season ticket packages, with the rights to be transferred to me after the first year. Unless the rights will be transferred, don’t bother responding. Given that the amount paid will be significant, I will ensure that a legal document will be drawn up at my expense. Bottom line: NAME YOUR PRICE. This is not a joke. I’m dead serious. There are three of us that want this, and our pockets aren’t light.”
Tags: NHL, Winnipeg
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Posted by Adam Bierenbaum on 7th June 2011
When this years Stanley Cup finals comes to an end, we may look back at the 5:07 mark of the first period of last nights game 3, as the turning point in the series. Boston Bruins forward Nathan Horton was skating near the middle of the ice, when he fed a pass to Milan Lucic on the left side, but, with Horton’s head still turned that way, Aaron Rome of the Vancouver Canucks, launched into him at the blue line. Horton’s head hit hard on the ice as the two players spilled to the ground. Immediately after the dirty hit, the raucous TD Garden fans instantly turned into a silent, and anxious fan base. As Horton lay on his back, cameras caught his eyes rolling back; the capacity crowd took a collective breath. Horton, who is second on the Bruins in postseason points, was cared to on ice for an extremely long time before he was finally taken of the ice on a stretcher. Watching this unfold, you had to wonder if this hit was the nail in the coffin for the Bruins, who are searching for their first title since 1973. How would the Bruins respond to watching one of their leaders, lay on the ice motionless?
Well, the Bruins did not score on the ensuing five-minute power play, nor did they tally a goal in the first period. It looked like they were physically tired, and emotionally spent. But then in the locker room, in between periods, something happened. Reports came in from Massachusetts General Hospital that Horton was “moving all his extremities.” The Bruins were finally able to take their mind for a little bit, off their fallen teammate and onto the task at hand. Bruins Coach Claude Julien implored his team to respond in a way that would make Horton proud. This was one of the moments that you usually only see in movies. One of those rare moments that can draw a team together and propel them forward. The Bruins seized this moment and never looked back.
It was time for the Bruins to finally get some payback. They decided not to respond with fists, but with something that hurts much more…. Goals. They rallied around Horton, their battered teammate. They propped up their embattled coach, then cashed in on their chance at redemption behind their goaltender Tim Thomas, who was again, in the words of Daniel Sedin, “beyond unbelievable.” The Bruins were finally playing with a purpose, as they went on to blow the Canucks out 8-1. They played such a hard-nosed, physical game, something we hadn’t seen in this final yet from the B’s.
There was no better moment that exemplified the Bruins’ play last night than when Henrik Sedin, who leads the Canucks with 21 playoff points, attempted to bat down the puck right in front of the Bruins’ crease in an array of third-period activity. Tim Thomas sized up the young center, then sent him to the ice with a cross check that sent one message. Not in My House, and Certainly Not Tonight.
As the Bruins left the Arena last night, there were a lot of questions to be answered. They didn’t know how their teammate was doing, or how they are going to play without Horton for the rest of the series. The one thing they did know though, was that they represented Horton in a way that would make him proud.
Tags: Aaron Rome, Boston Bruins, Nathan Horton, NHL Playoffs, Vancouver Canucks
Posted in Boston Bruins, Hockey Stuff, NHL, NHL Playoffs, NHL Stanley Cup, Vancouver Canucks | No Comments »