Detroit Red Wings officially sign Kirk Maltby, place Derek Meech on waivers

kirkmaltbyhit.jpgThe Detroit Red Wings did some lower-level roster shuffling today.

George Malik passes along the news that the team finally officially signed aging forward Kirk Maltby to a one year, two-way deal while Red Wings GM Ken Holland placed young defenseman Derek Meech on waivers. Maltby’s deal will be worth $525 K at the NHL level and $105K at the AHL level.

The 37-year-old Maltby played with Detroit during most of his 16 NHL seasons, as he joined the team when he was only 24 years old. The 2009-10 season saw a minor dip in his already meager production, as his typical 10-11 point totals dropped to six as he only appeared in 52 regular season games and averaged 10 minutes of ice time per game. Naturally, Maltby is there as a scrappy character guy, so his biggest impact rarely shows up on the scoresheet.

Derek Meech is much younger at 26, but the team found him expendable. It’s not quite as surprising when you look at his career numbers, though. He played in a career high 49 games last season, managing six points and a -12 rating while logging just under 12 minutes per game.

Ansar Khan points out the fact that the Red Wings will probably need to move a forward to the minors before the season starts, so it’s quite possible that training camp could (at least temporarily) make or break Maltby’s status with the team. Meech will need to clear waivers (and possibly hope for a preseason injury or two) to avoid a demotion to the AHL, so the Red Wings could have some interesting storylines going into training camp. We’ll keep you updated.

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    Capitals manage OT win after coughing up lead to Bruins

    WASHINGTON, DC - NOVEMBER 03: Nicklas Backstrom #19 of the Washington Capitals looks on against the Winnipeg Jets during the first period at Verizon Center on November 3, 2016 in Washington, DC. (Photo by Patrick Smith/Getty Images)
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    It wasn’t pretty, and they might have lost key defenseman Matt Niskanen to injury, but at least the Washington Capitals managed a win against the Boston Bruins.

    For a while, it was looking pretty ugly.

    After going up 3-0, the Capitals went more than a period’s worth of time without even managing a shot on goal. Whether you lean more toward giving the Bruins credit for fighting back or beating up the Capitals for “sitting on a lead,” it’s staggering that such a dangerous offense could be held in check for so long.

    Luckily for Washington, Nicklas Backstrom salvaged the night with an overtime goal to give the Capitals a 4-3 overtime win.

    Both teams have had a knack for extending games beyond regulation lately, by the way:

    Capitals over the last three games:
    Shootout loss to the Lightning
    Overtime win against the Sabres
    Overtime win tonight against the Bruins

    Bruins over the last five games:
    Shootout loss against Flyers
    Shootout win against Hurricanes
    Regulation win against Sabres
    Overtime win against Panthers
    Overtime loss to the Capitals

    Maybe that’s what gets it done in 2016-17: finding ways to carve out wins and shake out rough patches, like the Caps did tonight.

    Matt Niskanen injured by Patrice Bergeron boarding hit

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    Patrice Bergeron doesn’t have a reputation for dirty hits, but he drew the Washington Capitals’ ire for a hit on Matt Niskanen.

    The Capitals consider Niskanen “probable” to return to Wednesday’s game against the Boston Bruins with what they’re calling an upper-body injury. Bergeron received a two-minute boarding penalty for the infraction.

    (Check out video of the hit above.)

    The Capitals’ Twitter acknowledged the brewing bad feelings.

    Does Bergeron deserve supplemental discipline for that boarding hit?

    Washington currently leads the game 3-2.

    Ouch: NHL official helped off ice after puck to knee (Video)

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    There are plenty of hazards on an NHL rink even if you’re not a player.

    Barry Trotz ranks among the coaches who’ve been hit by pucks, though he’s one of the tiny sliver of humans who would shake off a puck to the forehead. It can be dangerous for officials, too, whether it means a wayward puck or wayward player.

    The latest example comes in the form of linesman Steve Miller needing help off the ice after a puck hit him in the knee area. As you can see from the video, it looked like he was in serious pain.

    Yikes:

    Video: Tyler Bozak with some saucy moves on this goal

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    It’s refreshing that hockey fans have, for the most part, moved on from debating Tyler Bozak‘s merits.

    The general feeling is that the Toronto Maple Leafs use him in appropriate ways these days, so we can simply enjoy his work as a pretty spiffy hockey player.

    Speaking of spiffy, check out the sweet moves he made against the Minnesota Wild for the goal above. Feels like you could dub over a Chris Berman “whoop” or two in there, right?

    (If you’re into that kind of thing.)

    Here’s that gaudy move in isolation and in GIF form: