Life and hockey trades are funny sometimes. When the Pittsburgh Penguins took “the next step” by acquiring Marian Hossa from the Atlanta Thrashers in a big trade, it seemed like plucky forward Pascal Dupuis would be a mere throw-in (kind of like when Tomas Kopecky signed with Hossa in Chicago).
Yet after one productive postseason, Hossa took off from Pittsburgh to Detroit (and then to Chicago). The Atlanta Thrashers didn’t do much with their assets, either, as Colby Armstrong and Erik Christensen wear other teams’ uniforms and the two prospects they received haven’t amounted to much.
In a weird way, Dupuis is why the Penguins might have “won” that deal. He scored a solid 103 points in 233 games after signing a three-year, $4.2 million deal with Pittsburgh in 2008 and hopes to do even better with his latest deal. Dave Molinari reports that Dupuis and the Penguins agreed to a two-year, $3 million deal today. That amounts to about a $100K raise for Dupuis since his annual cap hit goes from $1.4 million to $1.5 million.
That amount seems pretty much on-the-nose for a quality character guy who does a little bit of everything (and with some speed). If HBO’s 24/7 series is any indication, he’s also pretty tight with Sidney Crosby – either serving as his roommate, friend or both – so that probably didn’t hurt his chances with the team either.
The Penguins have some interesting choices to make with pending free agents such as Tyler Kennedy and the possible return of Jaromir Jagr, so we’ll keep you informed of what they (and the 29 other NHL teams) are doing this summer.
Even with all the young players that have been healthy scratches this season, don’t expect the NHL to change its waiver rules.
Deputy commissioner Bill Daly told PHT in an email that it’s not something that’s “ever been considered.”
“For better or worse that’s what waiver rules are there for,” Daly wrote. “They force Clubs to make tough decisions.”
Today, Montreal defenseman Jarred Tinordi became the latest waiver-eligible youngster to be sent to the AHL on a two-week conditioning loan.
Tinordi, 23, has yet to play a single game for the Habs this season. If he were still exempt from waivers, he’d have undoubtedly been sent to the AHL long before he had to watch so many NHL games from the press box.
In light of situations like Tinordi’s, some have suggested the NHL change the rules. Currently, the only risk-free way for waiver-eligible players to get playing time in the AHL is via conditioning stint, and, as mentioned, those are limited to 14 days in length.
So the Habs will, indeed, need to make a “tough decision” when Tinordi’s conditioning stint is up. Do they put him in the lineup? Do they keep him in the press box and wait for an injury or some other circumstance to create an opportunity for him to play? Do they risk losing him to waivers by attempting to send him to the AHL? Do they trade him?
Your call, Marc Bergevin.
Related: Stanislav Galiev is stuck in the NHL
Joni Ortio has cleared waivers and been assigned to AHL Stockton, the Calgary Flames announced today.
The 24-year-old goalie was always likely to clear, what with his dreadful numbers this season (0-2-1, .868),
But we suppose there was always the chance he’d get picked up, so it’s a relief for the Flames all the same. With a little more time to hone his game in the AHL, Ortio could still turn out to be a quality NHL netminder.
In a related move, veteran goalie Jonas Hiller has been activated from injured reserve. Hiller and Karri Ramo are the only goalies on the Flames’ active roster now.
Two injury updates in one post.
First, the situation with Montreal goalie Carey Price, who was hurt last night versus the Rangers.
According to Canadiens coach Michel Therrien, Price has been placed on injured reserve with a lower-body injury. That means he’ll be out at least a week, though no exact timeline was provided.
“We don’t know how long Carey will be out, but for us it’s business as usual,” said Therrien.
Mike Condon will get the start tomorrow in New Jersey.
As for Oilers forward Nail Yakupov, he’ll be out 2-4 weeks after spraining his ankle last night in Carolina while getting tangled up with a linesman.
Ducks captain Ryan Getzlaf wasn’t impressed with at least two things last night in Arizona:
1. His team’s performance in a 4-2 loss to the Coyotes.
2. The atmosphere inside Gila River Arena, where the announced attendance was just 11,578.
“It’s hard. When you come into a building … it’s dead,” Getzlaf told the O.C. Register. “Nothing against the fans. It’s hard to fill a big building like this and have the amount of people in it to build your energy. So you have to do it yourself. You have to be ready when you step on the ice. I thought we came out flat.”
Anaheim’s record fell to 8-11-4 with the defeat.
The Coyotes’ average attendance also fell, to 13,144 in eight games.