Most of the big-name free agents have either found a home (if they’re unrestricted and desirable) or are locked in limbo (if they’re restricted and prohibitively expensive). That being said, there are plenty of smaller names re-upping with their previous teams or signing with new franchises. Let’s take a look at the July 11 signings of lesser note.
The Anaheim Ducks signed Dan “Big Sexy” Sexton to an intriguing two-year deal today. Sexton’s new contract is a little unusual because it will be a two-year contract in 2011-12 and then a one-way deal in 2012-13. The deal will be worth $550K at the NHL level both seasons and worth $105K whenever he plays at the AHL level in 11-12. The right winger has been respectable in half-season duty the last two seasons, scoring 13 points in 47 games in 10-11 and 19 in 41 games in 09-10.
The Washington Capitals signed former Toronto Maple Leafs prospect Christian Hanson to a one-year, two-way deal. The most notable thing about this deal is that Christian Hanson is the son of one of the infamous Hanson Brothers from the classic hockey movie “Slap Shot” while Capitals coach Bruce Boudreau appeared in the film. It’s tough to say that he’ll produce at the NHL level in a way that would top that random anecdote, though.
Finally, the Chicago Blackhawks signed forward Rob Klinkhammer and goalie Alec Richards to deals today. Klinkhammer’s last name is what really makes this worth noting; if nothing else, today’s signings are a pun-maker’s delight.
Video: Canucks escape Arizona with another win for the moms
With their mothers traveling on the road trip — Matt Bartkowski‘s mom, Beth, has become a cult hero in Vancouver after another priceless media interview — the Canucks took back-to-back wins, moving them right back into the thick of the playoff fight in the Western Conference.
Up by a goal in the third period, defenseman Alex Biega played the hero, pulling the puck out of the crease after it got by Ryan Miller on a backhand shot from Kyle Chipchura, maintaining Vancouver’s lead.
Phaneuf burned on Zetterberg game-winner in Sens debut
“I put my stick there, he put (the puck) under and he made a good shot. I’ve got to have a better stick in that situation, but you’ve got to give him credit for that play.”
Phaneuf finished the night with a minus-one rating and two hits in almost 22 minutes of ice time, putting him second among Sens defensemen in that category behind Erik Karlsson, who played a whopping 33:30.
Phaneuf drilled Red Wings defenseman Danny DeKeyser with a hard slap shot early in the third period.
DeKeyser played one more shift — all of 10 seconds — before exiting the game.
Blashill says DeKeyser has a bruise, not a break. Will know more tomorrow, but probably day-to-day
The New York Rangers are likely too far behind the Washington Capitals to take any legitimate run at the Atlantic Division down the stretch.
But winners now of four straight, the Rangers have opened up a bit of a gap between them and other Eastern Conference teams in the playoff race. New York scored a 3-0 win over the Pittsburgh Penguins, winners in six of their last seven games, on Wednesday.
“Now, ultimately what they’re hoping from a Wideman perspective and the Players’ Association is that commissioner Gary Bettman will rule and he will reduce the number of games suspended down from 20,” said Dreger during a segment on NBCSN.
“Is he going to reduce it by three games? Five games seems a bit of a stretch. And when might he do that? There’s no timeline on this.”
7 hours of back and forth legal speak…otherwise known as the Wideman appeal has concluded in NYC.