Come on down! Crosby, Ovechkin, and Roenick to appear on The Price Is Right

The Winter Classic is just two and a half weeks away and the NHL is finding a new and inventive way to promote the game. They’re sending the game’s biggest stars Alexander Ovechkin and Sidney Crosby along with Jeremy Roenick to The Price Is Right to give away a trip to the 2011 Winter Classic and assorted other NHL and sponsor goodies.

No, this is not a joke. This is very real and very awesome.

The release from the NHL says this:

Pittsburgh Penguins captain Sidney Crosby, Washington Capitals captain Alex Ovechkin and former NHLer Jeremy Roenick are guests on the Monday, Dec. 20 edition of THE PRICE IS RIGHT (11:00 AM-12:00 Noon, ET; 10:00-11:00 AM, PT) on the CBS Television Network. The trio will introduce an NHL-themed showcase that includes a trip to Pittsburgh for the highly anticipated 2011 Bridgestone NHL Winter Classic®, played outdoors at Heinz Field on New Year’s Day.

Host Drew Carey, Roenick, Crosby and Ovechkin will unveil the showcase that features tickets to watch the Penguins play against the Capitals in the historic outdoor game; VIP passes to the NHL’s New Year’s Eve Bash; field/ice-level access during the Capitals and Penguins team practices at Heinz Field on Friday, Dec. 31; and a brand new 2011 Honda CR-Z Sport Hybrid car.

Roenick also will introduce an NHL® prize that includes a once-in-a-lifetime trip to the 2011 Stanley Cup® Final and NHL-licensed products. Other NHL-related prizes include items from NHL partners Bridgestone, Reebok, Enterprise Rent-A-Car, LG and Starwood Hotels.

Growing up being a kid who spent every sick day from school locked on to the TV at 11 am to watch The Price Is Right, this is pretty damn awesome to see them joining up on the show to do this. Of course, it’d be way more fun if we could see Crosby, Ovechkin, and Roenick get outbid by a dollar by a wily member of the studio audience just to see how they’d react to such shenanigans. Would Sid yell to Drew Carey about it? Would Alex look to drop the gloves with the contestant? How about Roenick getting teary-eyed about not making it on stage to play a round of Plinko? The possibilities are endless.

This isn’t the first time the NHL and The Price Is Right have teamed up. Back in 2008, members of the Los Angeles Kings appeared on the legendary game show to give away a hockey-themed showcase in the showcase showdown. We’re suspecting that Crosby, Ovechkin, and Roenick will have just a little bit more pull in the popularity department than Derek Armstrong, Denis Gauthier, Kyle Calder, and Dustin Brown did two years ago.

As for the games we’d love to see these guys play, here’s a short list:

  • Alex Ovechkin playing That’s Too Much. Hearing him yell the catchphrase to win a prize would be well worth it.
  • Sidney Crosby playing Clock Game. Sid on the spot trying to guess the price of a grandfather clock? Game on, brother.
  • Jeremy Roenick playing The Grocery Game. Come on, when’s the last time JR went to the grocery store? The guesses would be worth it.
  • Sid and Alex taking turns on the punch board for $10,000. Come on boys, let’s see those lefts and rights put to good use.

Still… A perfect mix of game shows, nostalgia, and hockey makes for a great morning of awesomeness on Monday. Time for that DVR to get a workout.

 

B’s ink prospects Fitzgerald, Johansson to entry-level deals

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Boston has brought a pair of talented youngsters into the fold.

Forward Ryan Fitzgerald, who just wrapped his senior season at Boston College, and defenseman Emil Johansson — who spent this year playing in the Swedish Hockey League — have signed their entry-level deals and will begin playing with the club’s AHL affiliate in Providence.

Fitzgerald — who’s father, Tom, is the assistant GM in New Jersey — scored 31 points in 34 games for BC this year, serving as an alternate captain. He was originally taken by Boston in the fourth round (120th overall) of the ’13 draft.

Johansson, 20, was a seventh-round pick in ’14 that’s panned out pretty well. He scored a career-high seven goals and 17 points in 49 games for Djugardens this year, appearing in three playoff contests.

 

 

Ducks send Stoner to AHL on conditioning loan

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Clayton Stoner is going to play some hockey again.

The Anaheim Ducks announced today that the 32-year-old defenseman has been assigned to AHL San Diego on a long-term injury conditioning loan.

Stoner has not played since Nov. 15. He had abdominal surgery in December, at which point the Ducks said he’d miss an additional 4-6 weeks. But a setback in his recovery extended the time frame.

“The setback was kind of just me trying to get back maybe a little bit quicker than I should,” Stoner told the O.C. Register recently. “And I wasn’t ready. Things have been good here for a little while so hopefully I’m just trying to string some days together and earn a spot back and kind of prove that I can be healthy and stay healthy.”

Panthers didn’t want to trade Crouse, but Bolland contract was ‘strangling’ them

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Interesting note here from Florida head coach Tom Rowe who, last night, watched former Panther prospect Lawson Crouse play in Florida for the first time since being traded to Arizona.

Crouse was the price the Panthers had to pay to unload Dave Bolland‘s contract on the Coyotes last summer. Rowe wasn’t involved with the Bolland signing, but was involved in dumping the contract — he was Florida’s assistant GM at the time the deal went down.

His take, from the Miami Herald:

Florida traded Crouse to the Coyotes last summer as part of a salary cap dump; Arizona took on the final three years and $16.5-million of Dave Bolland’s contract in exchange for a top prospect — in this case, Crouse.

“We got criticized for giving up on a great young prospect but we had to,” Rowe said. “That contract was strangling us, cap-wise. …

“When we traded him, our scouts were furious. I’m not going to lie. But we had to do something and that was trade Lawson. I’m sure, to this day, he’s still sour about it.”

Crouse, who Florida took 11th overall at the 2015 draft, has five goals and 11 points through 64 games this year, averaging 11:50 TOI per night. Those numbers don’t jump off the page, but they do need to be taken in context — Crouse is only 19 years old, and the 10th-youngest player to play in the NHL this season.

Bolland, meanwhile, hasn’t played since December of 2015, due to a variety of back and ankle injuries. His time in Florida was largely forgettable — after scoring the $27.5 million pact, he played just 78 games in a Panthers uniform, scoring 28 points.  It’s widely regarded as the worst deal GM Dale Tallon has made during his time with the organization.

Shortly after taking on his contract, Coyotes GM John Chayka said Bolland wouldn’t be healthy for the “foreseeable future.” The 30-year-old has two years remaining on his deal, at $5.5 million annually.

 

Arizona lawmaker suggests Coyotes pledge more money for new arena

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Arizona Senate President Steve Yarbrough does not expect a piece of legislation to pass that would give the Coyotes millions of dollars in public financing to build a new arena.

That being said, Yarbrough thinks the Coyotes may be able to gain some “traction” if they offer to put in more of their own money.

Under the current plan, the team has pledged $170 million of the arena’s total cost, which is estimated at almost $400 million. The difference would be made up by new sales taxes, plus $55 million from the still-to-be-determined host city.

“If you are getting no traction the way the bill is designed, you could see if the hockey team paid a greater portion,” Yarbrough told the Arizona Republic yesterday. “I have been around this business long enough to know that if it’s not working in this format, you change the format to make it more attractive.”

For their part, the Coyotes have not said whether they’d be willing to pay a greater portion of the project, only that they’ll continue to “work hard to find a viable arena solution in the greater Phoenix area, a market that both the club and the NHL believe is a strong hockey market capable of supporting a successful NHL franchise.”

Related: Bettman says Coyotes “cannot and will not remain in Glendale”