Signs point to Todd Bertuzzi staying in Detroit

Thumbnail image for bertuzzi.jpgThere’s no doubt that I delight in lampooning Todd Bertuzzi. Obviously, there’s our once-weekly Bertuzzday award (we’ll probably start that again next season, in some form): a token of shame given out because of the Steve Moore debacle. Even beyond that, Bertuzzi has been a goat in the eyes of many bloggers for pure hockey reasons, as he underwhelmed onlookers while bouncing from the Panthers to the Red Wings to the Ducks and Flames.

A strange thing happened on his way back to the Motor City, though. While no one would mistake him for the dominant force he was for a few impressive seasons with Markus Naslund in Vancouver, Bertuzzi started to resemble the player who once made an impact on the league. Watching him protect the puck and bring it into tough areas after years of witnessing him shy away from contact and earn the title of Largest Perimeter Player/Floater was, frankly, quite stunning.

Could it be that he was just trying to save his career? That’s not clear just yet, but it looks like the Detroit Red Wings want to bring Big Bert back. Here’s more from the Detroit Free Press.

The Wings have offered a two-year deal to unrestricted free-agent forward Todd Bertuzzi. They also have extended qualifying offers to all five of their restricted free agents: forwards Patrick Eaves, Drew Miller, Justin Abdelkader and Darren Helm and defenseman Derek Meech. There have been some preliminary talks with the agents for Eaves and Miller. Eaves, Miller and Meech all have arbitration rights.

NOTEBOOK: Tomas Holmstrom officially signed his two-year deal Monday, putting the Wings at $52.245 million in salaries toward next season. The cap is expected to rise $2 million to $58.8 million, leaving roughly $6.5 million in cap space. Besides re-signing Bertuzzi and the five restricted agents, the Wings will use what is left toward a veteran defenseman — possibly Andreas Lilja — and seeing if there’s a gritty forward available via free agency.

(The story also details the fact that the team is very close to signing general manager Ken Holland and assistant general manager Jim Nill to contract extensions.)

While I cannot help but wonder if we’ll see the floating Bertuzzi return soon enough, the Red Wings are justified in thinking that they can contend with last year’s group (plus the helpful addition of one year cast-off Jiri Hudler). The only issue is that Bertuzzi and the Red Wings aren’t exactly spring chickens, either. Then again, I guess that’s another discussion for another day.

We’ll let you know once/if a deal is signed. From the sounds of things, though, it looks like Bertuzzi will remain in Detroit.

Scroll Down For:

    Despite tough fight, Stars hand Wild their sixth straight loss

    Leave a comment

    The Minnesota Wild put together the kind of effort that would beat a lot of NHL teams on Tuesday. Unfortunately for that beleaguered group, it wasn’t enough to edge the Dallas Stars.

    Despite generating 40 shots on goal and generating 1-0 and 2-1 leads, the Wild lost to the Stars 4-3 in overtime. With that, they’ve lost six straight games.

    (The view doesn’t get much prettier if you pull away a little further, either, as Minnesota’s only won once in the last month, going 1-9-2 in their last 12.)

    Ultimately, the Stars’ big guns were too powerful. Tyler Seguin generated two assists and so did Jamie Benn, who set up John Klingberg‘s overtime game-winning goal.

    Again, the effort sure seemed to be there for the Wild, even if they’re far beyond the point of accepting moral victories.

    As frustrating as this must be, Minnesota’s not that far from a playoff spot. Still, it has to sting to see “Close, but not good enough” as a prevailing theme as of late.

    Royal beating: Lucic, Kings crush Bruins 9-2

    As Boston Bruins' Patrice Bergeron (37) looks on Los Angeles Kings' Milan Lucic waves to the crowd after a tribute to him was played on the screen during the first period of an NHL hockey game in Boston Tuesday, Feb. 9, 2016. (AP Photo/Winslow Townson)
    AP
    16 Comments

    The Boston Bruins welcomed Milan Lucic back on Tuesday. Maybe they shouldn’t have extended such a warm welcome to the Los Angeles Kings overall, however.

    You won’t see many games as lopsided as this one, at least in 2015-16, as the Kings walloped the Bruins by a humbling score of 9-2.

    Lucic wasn’t just there, either, as he scored a goal and an assist in his quite triumphant return to Boston.

    Tuukka Rask had a short night in Boston’s net, yet it wasn’t as if Jonas Gustavsson enjoyed his time. It was a pretty sound beating by all accounts.

    This dominant win is a heck of a way for the Kings to begin an imposing seven-game road trip, which continues against the New York Islanders on Thursday. The Bruins probably want to burn the tape on this one themselves, as they’re about to head on a six-game road trip.

    Video: Evander Kane believes he won his fights vs. Alex Petrovic

    15 Comments

    The Florida Panthers are beating up the Buffalo Sabres where it counts – on the scoreboard – but Evander Kane was happy to highlight his perceived victories in a couple bouts.

    Buffalo’s power forward fought Alex Petrovic twice on Tuesday, and Kane wasn’t shy about holding up a “2-0.”

    You can watch the second fight above, and the first one below, via Hockey Fights by way of MSG:

    This GIF might just say it all, really:

    Update: Apparently they fought again moments after this post went up.

    Probably safe to call it a rivalry between the two, right?

    The Panthers ultimately won 7-4.

    Fight video: Yes, a visor-breaking punch

    Leave a comment

    Some hockey players resist the urge to wear a visor, at least if they’re given that choice.

    Perhaps a few will say “Hey, Nathan Beaulieu will just punch it off anyway.”

    Maybe not, but Beaulieu provided a rather unique moment in his fight with Cedric Paquette during the Montreal Canadiens – Tampa Bay Lightning game. You can watch that bout in the video above, and see a cut on the Lightning pest’s face from that blow.

    Want it in GIF form? OK then: