Patrick Sharp

Surprise! Patrick Sharp will play tonight for against St. Louis

Chicago’s been without star scorer Patrick Sharp since he went down on March 20 against Phoenix with a knee injury. The Blackhawks, unsurprisingly have been a bit inconsistent without their top goal scorer but tonight they get a pleasant surprise as Sharp will play tonight against St. Louis.

Without Sharp in the lineup Chicago has gone 3-3-1 and sit eighth in the Western Conference just two points ahead of Dallas and Calgary for the last playoff spot. Sharp’s 34 goals this year are a team best and with the different injuries the team has had to deal with this season, his has been the most inconveniently timed coming right in the midst of a playoff push at the end of the season. While Chicago lost Troy Brouwer last night with a right shoulder injury, getting Sharp back should help their offense out immensely.

With Sharp returning to action, the Blackhawks and their fans have to feel a lot better about their chances of making the playoffs. Sharp has been invaluable to the team this season and has proved that his breakout last season was no fluke. If his knee is back to full health, it’s a huge turn of events for the Blackhawks. Bringing him back against a St. Louis team that plays very physical hockey will ensure that Sharp won’t get an easy welcome back to action.

Kings, NHLPA announce settlement in Richards grievance

Los Angeles Kings v New York Rangers

The Los Angeles Kings announced today that they have “reached an agreement with Mike Richards to resolve the grievance filed in relation to the termination of his NHL Standard Players Contract. The terms are agreeable to all parties.”

The club said that it will not be commenting further “on the terms” of the settlement.

The NHLPA released a similar statement.

It was reported earlier in the week that a settlement was close to being reached; however, it wasn’t clear what salary-cap penalties the Kings would incur.

We’re starting to find out some details now:

How the final numbers differ from what the Kings would have incurred if they’d bought Richards out will be interesting to see. And if there are differences, how will they be justified?

Stay tuned.

Report: Ex-NHLer Aaron Ward arrested for ‘assault on a female’ (Updated)

Brad May, Kevin Hodson, Jiri Fischer, Aaron Ward

Aaron Ward, a 16-year NHL veteran that appeared in over 800 career games, has been arrested for “assault on a female,” per WNCN.

Ward was arrested on Friday in Cary, North Carolina and also charged with interfering with emergency communication, according to the report.

Currently working as an analyst for TSN, Ward spent five years of his career in Carolina, helping the ‘Canes capture the Stanley Cup in 2006.

Update: Per WRAL, Ward’s wife called 9-1-1 after the two had a confrontation around 1 p.m. ET. Police confirmed Ward was arrested at his home in Cary.

According to the warrant for his arrest, he took away his wife’s phone.

Because of the nature of his charges, Ward will spend a mandatory 48 hours in the Wake County jail. Anyone arrested on a domestic violence charge is held for 48 hours before bail is set.

And here’s a statement from TSN: