If you’d like to acquire Calgary forward Rene Bourque, go ahead and call Flames GM Jay Feaster. He won’t hang up.
And if you’d like to acquire Matt Stajan, Feaster will fly you out first class, wine you, dine you, and tell you how pretty your eyes are.
TSN’s Darren Dreger reports via Twitter that while Feaster isn’t “shopping” Bourque, he’s “willing to consider interest or offers on a number of players.”
We’ll go ahead and assume Bourque is one of those players.
We’ll guarantee Stajan is.
Dreger kicked the Bourque speculation into high gear last week when he suggested the three-time 20-goal scorer was in play, along with Carolina’s Tuomo Ruutu.
Bourque, 29, tallied 27 goals last season for the Flames. He also features a manageable $3.3-million cap hit on a contract that runs until 2015-16.
Feaster appears to be trying to clear the deck of non-essential future obligations in order to give the club more financial flexibility. If he can move Bourque, the Flames will have just six players signed past next season – Stajan, Alex Tanguay, Curtis Glencross, Jay Bouwmeester, Mark Giordano and Miikka Kiprusoff. (Jarome Iginla is set to become an unrestricted free agent in the summer of 2013.)
While sending Bourque packing might seem odd considering he’s only 29 and playing relatively well, he’s also one of the few Calgary assets with the potential to command a significant return on the market. And unlike Bouwmeester and Giordano, Bourque can’t say no to being moved. As part of his modified no-trade clause, he can give (and has given) a list of 10 teams the Flames cannot send him to. (Leaving 19 he can go to.)
When the New Jersey Devils shut down a team 1-0, it’s usually with Cory Schneider in net.
Their workhorse got the afternoon off against the Los Angeles Kings on Sunday, yet Keith Kinkaid did his Schneider impression, grabbing his first NHL shutout in the process.
It was a low-event game with just 46 combined shots on goal, but Kinkaid had to work, stopping all 28 shots. To give you an idea of how tight this game was, the only tally was credited to David Schlemko on the power play.
This gives the Devils three straight wins. They managed to climb into third place in the Metropolitan Division, although New Jersey’s edge is a little misleading; the Islanders trail them by one standings point while holding three games in hand.
That leaves the Islanders in the bottom wild card spot, while the Penguins aren’t so far behind either.
Third in Metro: Devils – 65 points with 57 games played
Second wildcard: Islanders – 64 points, 54 GP
First spot outside the East playoffs: Penguins – 63 points, 54 GP
So, the Devils’ hold of a playoff spot is a bit tenuous, yet the bottom line is that they’re staying in the mix.
The Kings, meanwhile, remain comfortably in first in the Pacific.
The Boston Bruins (without Patrice Bergeron) take on the Detroit Red Wings (missing Jonathan Ericsson) on Sunday afternoon.
It’s a matchup between the second-ranked and third-ranked teams in the Atlantic Division, with little separating the two in the standings.
You can watch the game on NBC and also stream it online via the link below.
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As cool as it was at the time for many, Patrice Bergeron‘s fight against Blake Wheeler is … honestly, a good reminder why players like Bergeron rarely drop the gloves.
Multiple outlets including CSNNE.com’s Joe Haggerty report that Bergeron will miss Sunday afternoon’s game against the Detroit Red Wings (which you can watch on NBC).
We don’t know a ton about the injury aside from the fact that the multiple Selke-winner is considered day-to-day.
People don’t seem overly concerned about this issue, but you have to wonder if Bergeron made a bad choice, especially considering his history of concussion issues.
You can watch the bout that may or may not have left him injured in the video above.
You know, with Connor McDavid hogging so much attention, it’s about time that Jack Eichel provided us with another awesome goal.
That tally came at the Colorado Avalanche’s (and especially Semyon Varlamov‘s) expense as that was the Buffalo Sabres first shot of the game.
Patrick Roy apparently felt like this just wasn’t Varlamov’s afternoon, as Colorado’s head coach decided to pull him after Varly allowed two goals on as many shots. Evander Kane nabbed the other goal for Buffalo.
You can watch the goal in the video above, which reminds us that “Eichel Tower” might not be a unique pun.
Another shot of it:
Check out Kane’s goal, too:
To be fair to Varlamov, Calvin Pickard has already allowed a goal as well. The Sabres are currently off to a 3-0 lead, and maybe a small roll considering how well they played against Montreal on Friday?
Update: The Sabres ended up beating the Avalanche 4-1.