Ales Hemsky is a tough player to value. When healthy, he’s a point-a-game player. Unfortunately, he always seems to be hurt.
And that’s just one factor Oilers GM Steve Tambellini will have to consider before choosing to sign or trade the 28-year-old pending unrestricted free agent. He’ll also have to decide if Hemsky is a fit on an Edmonton team with a plethora of young talent up front, but not much in the way of top-six size and grit.
“I think as a manager you always have to have your feel for what’s happening right now and what the team looks like,” Tambellini said, as per the Canadian Press.
“You also have to have a plan in place for the organization of identifying what your core is going to be and what that’s going to look like, what it’s going to cost to keep that core.
“Things can change along the way in the next few years. We’ve got a lot of high-end, talented, skilled players that we’re excited about and I know people are excited about. There’ll be issues. When it gets to that point, there will be hard decisions, but those are good problems. It means you’re getting better.”
Hemsky has just four goals and 20 assists in 42 games as he’s taken a backseat to the likes of Jordan Eberle, Taylor Hall and Ryan Nugent-Hopkins.
From 2005-06 to 2008-09, Hemsky was one of the more dangerous players in the NHL on the power play; however, he’s seen his PP time fall dramatically as the young guns have established themselves. For a team that’s struggling with the man advantage (Blues? Rangers? Kings?), perhaps he could provide a boost.
When the adrenaline wears off after a big hit or violent fight, fans will want to see results on the scoreboard and in the standings. It remains to be seen if the Oilers truly made strides in that regard during a summer of change.
On the bright side, their wunderkind star and expensive new addition are at least on the same page.
Report: Las Vegas NHL team asked permission to speak with Capitals assistant GM
Ross Mahoney was hired by McPhee to be the director of amateur scouting for the Caps which he did for 16 seasons before becoming assistant general manager. If you thought the team drafted well during McPhee’s tenure, Mahoney is a major reason why.
The Caps are in a tricky position here. Denying employees the chance to seek other opportunities looks bad, but then again the Capitals don’t want to see their entire office raided by Vegas.
There has always seemed to be a connection between hockey players and the game of golf. Some are better than others when it comes to the links.
Take NHL referee Garrett Rank, for example.
Rank, also an amateur golfer, has made the cut at the 2016 Canadian Open at Glen Abbey Golf Club just south of Toronto. He’s currently tied for 36th at even par heading into the weekend. He also sits seven shots behind the leader, Dustin Johnson, the future son-in-law of The Great One, Wayne Gretzky.
Rank, who joined the NHL Officials Association in 2014, has split his time between officiating in the NHL and the American Hockey League. But, according to the PGA Tour website, he was hired as a full-time NHL ref the day before the opening round of this week’s Canadian Open.
“I’d be lying if I told you that I didn’t take my clubs with me when I was on the road,” he told the PGA Tour website. “I think it helps me and makes it a little easier for me because I know that this isn’t the end of the world, whether I shot 65 or 75.”
“When I got the news I tried to maintain a positive attitude,” he told the Toronto Sun. “And you know what, it’s kind of a blessing in disguise. You never want to have cancer wished upon someone but I think it gave me a little better outlook in terms of a bad call on the ice wasn’t as bad. Or hitting a bad shot on the golf course wasn’t the end of the world.
“It has allowed me to stay patient and be grateful for the opportunities and things I have in life.”