Waiver claims: Montreal gets Staubitz, Winnipeg gets Clitsome


More scintillating action from the 2012 NHL Trade Deadline: Montreal has claimed Minnesota forward Brad Staubitz off re-entry waivers and Winnipeg did the same with Columbus defenseman Grant Clitsome.

The latter of those claims could be a prelude to a larger deal. Winnipeg has received offers for UFA defenseman Johnny Oduya and if he’s shipped out, Clitsome is a capable lineup replacement on the Jets blueline. The 26-year-old Clitsome spent his entire career with the Blue Jackets organization, appearing in 93 games over the last three seasons.

Staubitz, 27, had spent the last two seasons with the Wild but was shipped off to AHL Houston after a poor performance on Feb. 9 in a 5-2 loss to Vancouver. He had zero goals, zero assists and (for you mathletes out there) zero points in 43 games with Minnesota this season.

In related news, the following players have cleared waivers entirely: Brian Rolston (New York Islanders), Eric Boulton (New Jersey), Ryan Russell (Columbus) and Krys Kolanos (Calgary).

Personal reasons: No Ovechkin for Caps tonight

Alex Ovechkin
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Alex Ovechkin won’t play for the Washington Capitals on Tuesday because of personal reasons, the team confirmed.

He entered the building considerably later than usual, but his presence at least opened the door for the possibility of No. 8 suiting up against the San Jose Sharks.

Instead, the Capitals will face the hot-starting Sharks without Ovechkin (personal reasons) and Nicklas Backstrom (injury).

That’s a tall order, yet it’s also an opportunity for Barry Trotz to prove his system is a difference-maker … and that the Capitals have the young players to take up the mantle when the big stars are out

This is how Washington’s forward lines may look tonight:

No, the Capitals have not shared details regarding what his “personal reasons” might be, by the way.

Bruins put Morrow on IR, bring up Cross

Brady Skjei, Joe Morrow
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Lower-level defense is not the biggest of many worries for the Boston Bruins, yet it might be another in a series of headaches.’s Joe Haggerty points out that Joe Morrow has been placed on IR while AHL stalwart Tommy Cross was called up.

With a -3 rating and negligible offensive impact so far, few will really be missing Morrow (pictured). From the way Haggerty describes Cross, it’s a pretty cool story if he gets into the lineup:

Cross was named captain of the Providence Bruins this season, and actually had a strong training camp as the hard-hitting, tough stay-at-home defenseman he’s developed into during his five years in the B’s minor league system. The 2007 second round pick was a highly regarded potential puck-moving defenseman when he was drafted prior to his Boston College career, but a series of knee injuries negated some of his speed and puck-moving capabilities.

Granted, the Bruins would prefer a sure-thing improvement over a feel-good story right now, as this 0-3-0 start marks their worst beginning in some time.

Injuries have been an issue in general, too, with Zdeno Chara‘s slow start mixed with Dennis Seidenberg on the mend and Brad Marchand in limbo.

The Bruins’ next game comes against the Avalanche in Colorado. Maybe they’ll start to mend things on the ice?