Earlier today, we pointed out that signing Curtis Glencross to a four-year, $10.2 million deal is the type of move made by a full-fledged general manager. As it turns out, one could consider that the first move Jay Feaster made with “interim” removed from his job title.
As many expected, the Calgary Flames officially announced that Feaster will be their general manager going forward.
The Flames seemed genuinely relieved once former GM Darryl Sutter stepped down. They were a fairly miserable 16-18-3 when he resigned but made a strong playoff push once he left. The team didn’t make it to the postseason, but Feaster’s prospects of keeping the job improved greatly thanks to the team’s 25-11-9 mark with him taking over.
That being said, Feaster’s biggest move was probably a non-move. He decided not to trade beloved (but aging and expensive) captain Jarome Iginla. Iginla had another great season in Calgary, putting up 43 goals and 86 points (including 39 points in the 31 games that followed the All-Star Break). Something tells me that $7.5 million per year question won’t go away, especially if the team struggles next season.
Obviously, the wisdom of this semi-promotion will be illustrated in the next seasons. Feaster won’t receive much cap space to work with and hasn’t always been the wisest with contract negotiations.* On the other hand, he does have a Stanley Cup on his resume from his stint with the Tampa Bay Lightning, so he has his pros and cons.
If nothing else, he gives the Flames stability since he was able to get acquainted with the team as Sutter’s assistant GM. We’ll see how he does now that he holds the throne.
* – Feaster signed Brad Richards (five years, $39 million; $7.9 million annual cap hit) and Dan Boyle (six years, $40 million; $6.66 million annual cap hit) to deals that were simply rich for the Tampa Bay Lightning to handle. They eventually needed to trade both players.
The Boston Bruins keep flipping the script.
In Wednesday’s case, it swerved to a “Cinderella” story, as little-known forward Frank Vatrano scored two of Boston’s three goals – including the overtime clincher – as the B’s beat the Detroit Red Wings 3-2 (OT).
Here’s his first goal of the night:
While this is his overtime game-winner:
It wasn’t a perfect night for the 21-year-old, yet it may have been a convincing one.
The Bruins continue to begin a month on a sour note before ending up with impressive sprees.
October: 0-3-0 start, finished month with four straight wins and victories in six of seven contests.
November: 0-3-0 start, losses in four of five; currently on a four-game winning strek with victories in five of six.
Boston faces a challenge in closing this month out against the Rangers on Friday, and it’s possible that this trend may continue, as they begin December with a three-game road trip through Western Canada.
More than anything else, the safest bet with the Bruins is for ups and downs.
Controversy just seems to find the Pittsburgh Penguins. Credit Sidney Crosby & Co. for responding with a win on Wednesday.
Crosby generated two pretty goals, including this slam-dunk slapper:
… While Evgeni Malkin‘s overtime-winner stood as the Penguins managed a 4-3 overtime win against the St. Louis Blues tonight.
(You can see Malkin’s OT-clincher in the video above this post.)
Will this win and strong performance from Crosby silence murmurs about his relationship with Mario Lemieux? Probably not, yet it likely turns the volume down in some ways, including killing the “Is he struggling because of distractions” storyline.
You know, at least for a little while. Maybe.
Claude Giroux isn’t the nastiest, most physical captain the Philadelphia Flyers have employed. Even so, he can be feisty at times.
Wednesday showed that, as he clearly wasn’t happy with an earlier Nick Leddy hit, and eventually got the New York Islanders defenseman to drop his gloves.
You can see the fight and the check that inspired that scrap in the video above.
It’s the fourth fight Giroux has been a part of, with his most recent adversary being may his most bitter rival.
Not a heavyweight bout between Giroux and Leddy, mind you, but sometimes it’s amusing to soak in such a rare sight.
Update: The fight may have inspired the Islanders more than the Flyers, as they bested Philly 3-1 on Wednesday.
Carter Hutton is getting something that might make fellow Nashville Predators goalie Pekka Rinne jealous: goal support.
Still, there was at least one moment where Rinne was likely happy to be on the bench, as Hutton was left flipping during this collision with Buffalo Sabres forward Marcus Foligno:
Remarkably, Hutton remained in the game.
If you’re the type who loves adding to your “hockey players are tough” files, put this under the goalies section.
Check out this incredible shot of that moment:
Update: The Predators held off the Buffalo Sabres to win 3-2.