Quick hits: Thrashers hire John Torchetti, Jay Feaster becomes Flames' assistant GM

torchettilol.jpgLet’s take a look at two moves made on the bench and in the front office today.

  • It’s been rumored for a while, but it’s official as of Thursday: John Torchetti (seen in the picture hilariously celebrating the Chicago Blackhawks Cup win) will be Craig Ramsay’s associate coach in Atlanta. TSN has the report.

John Torchetti has left the Stanley Cup champion Chicago Blackhawks to serve as associate coach under Atlanta Thrashers coach Craig Ramsay.

The 45-year-old Torchetti has been an assistant with Tampa Bay, Florida, Los Angeles and Chicago. He was an interim head coach with Florida and Los Angeles.

This will be the fourth city in which Torchetti has worked with new Thrashers general manager Rick Dudley.

  • The Calgary Flames announced that former Tampa Bay Lightning GM Jay Feaster will join their front office as the assistant general manager. (Also reported by TSN.)

On one hand, Feaster helped build the 2004 Stanley Cup winning Lightning squad. Unfortunately, he also helped construct the time-bomb that was their salary cap situation. The team lost Nikolai Khabibulin the summer after they won the Cup. He signed Dan Boyle and Brad Richards to contracts that forced the Lightning to trade them for little return. Generally speaking, the team fell apart after that anomalous championship season.

Hate to say it, but I hope that the Flames have a good capologist in their lower ranks. Neither Feaster nor current GM Darryl Sutter can count cap savvy among their greatest skills.

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    Perry to captain Canada at Worlds

    GLENDALE, AZ - APRIL 11:  Ryan Getzlaf #15 and Corey Perry #10 of the Anaheim Ducks watch from the bench during the first period of the NHL game against the Arizona Coyotes at Gila River Arena on April 11, 2015 in Glendale, Arizona.  (Photo by Christian Petersen/Getty Images)
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    Corey Perry will spearhead the leadership group looking to guide Canada to its second straight gold medal at the World Hockey Championships.

    On Thursday, the Canadian contingent announced that Perry would captain the squad at this year’s tournament, to be held in Moscow and Saint Petersburg. Joining him in the leadership group will be Colorado’s Matt Duchene, and Buffalo’s Ryan O'Reilly.

    “This is an energetic young team, and these three players bring a mixture of youth and experience in their leadership role on the ice and in the dressing room,” Canadian head coach Bill Peters said, per the Toronto Sun. “Their resumes speak for themselves — they know what it takes to compete at the highest level, and have all been part of pulling together Team Canada successes during these short-term events.”

    Unlike Duchene and O’Reilly, Perry wasn’t a part of last year’s championship team, but does have extensive international experience. He was part of the Canadian teams that captured gold at the ’10 Olympics in Vancouver at the ’14 games in Sochi.

    He’s also played in a pair of World Championships, but failed to medal both times.

    Trevor Daley is ‘in a good place’ now

    Pittsburgh Penguins Sidney Crosby (87) is congratulated by Trevor Daley (6) and Conor Sheary (43) after scoring a goal during the first period of Game 4 against the Washington Capitals in an NHL hockey Stanley Cup Eastern Conference semifinals in Pittsburgh, Wednesday, May 4, 2016. (AP Photo/Gene J. Puskar)
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    In just a few short months, Trevor Daley has gone from not being a fit in Chicago to being an indispensable part of the Pittsburgh Penguins.

    The veteran defenseman played almost 30 minutes last night, by far the most of any Penguin. Despite the absence of Kris Letang and Olli Maatta, Pittsburgh was able to beat the Capitals in overtime and take a 3-1 series lead back to Washington.

    “It’s funny how this game works,” Daley said, per the Penguins’ website. “You stick with it and good things happen. I’m just grateful for the opportunity. I’m in a good place here. I’m enjoying it with a great group of guys. We just play. That’s been our motto since I got here, since (Mike Sullivan) got here – just play.”

    Traded to Pittsburgh in December, with Rob Scuderi going to the Blackhawks, Daley’s strengths were immediately utilized by Sullivan. The Penguins’ new head coach came in emphasizing the importance of breakouts, and that suited Daley just fine.

    “Over the years my game has been getting in the play, moving the puck,” Daley said after he was traded. “I’m not the biggest guy so I won’t push guys over. I get into areas quickly and try to be a good team guy.”

    It was simply a good match. And for that, GM Jim Rutherford should be applauded. The Penguins are one game away from the Eastern Conference Final, and Daley is a big reason why.

    Related: Penguins provided ‘fresh start’ for Daley

    Veteran d-man Volchenkov signs in KHL

    Arizona Coyotes v Nashville Predators
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    After not playing anywhere this year, longtime NHL blueliner Anton Volchenkov is back in action, having signed a deal with KHL club Admiral Vladivostok.

    The deal, announced by Admiral on Thursday, puts Volchenkov back on a team for the first time since suiting up with Nashville during the ’14-15 campaign. He appeared in 46 games for the Preds, recording seven assists.

    Prior to his time in Nashville, Volchenkov in over 600 games with the Senators and Devils. He’d established a reputation as a physical, hard-hitting d-man, but struggled with injury and mobility in the later stages of his time in New Jersey, and was ultimately bought out of his contract.

    Here’s your Stanley Cup playoffs schedule for tonight

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    The Stanley Cup playoffs continue with two games on Thursday night. You can catch tonight’s action via the NBC Sports Group’s television and digital platforms.

    Dallas at St. Louis (8:00 p.m. ET) 

    The TV broadcast of Game 4 will be on NBCSN. To stream the game using the NBC Sports Live Extra app, click here. The Blues lead the series 2-1.

    San Jose at Nashville (9:00 p.m. ET)

    The TV broadcast of Game 4 will be on CNBC. To stream the game using the NBC Sports Live Extra app, click here. The Sharks lead the series 2-1.

    Here’s some relevant reading material to get you ready for tonight’s games:

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