There was a time when signing a hefty contract extension signaled that a player was borderline untouchable, but those days are gone. That’s especially true in Philadelphia, where the ink was barely dry on Jeff Carter’s deal before GM Paul Holmgren sent him to Columbus.
With that in mind, one cannot blame James van Riemsdyk if he was sweating the various trade rumors that included his name. The 22-year-old power forward expressed relief to remain with the Flyers while discussing the deadline with CSNPhilly.com’s Tim Panaccio.
“Yeah, at the end of the day, I’m happy to still be a Flyer,” Van Riemsdyk said. “I love all the guys we have on the team. We have a great group of guys, not only on the ice, but off the ice, as well. I’m really excited about what we can do together.”
Even so, JVR acknowledged a mindset that if Wayne Gretzky could get traded, then so could he.
It didn’t help that he’s been a bit disappointing considering what seemed like a breakout playoff performance for the burgeoning winger. That’s the danger of trusting the results of a small sample in a contract year, but JVR is young enough that it’s far too early to call the contract an albatross.
Depending upon how you look at it, the Flyers either decided they couldn’t part with the young forward or didn’t find the right deal, but the bottom line is that he can put those rumors behind him.
For now, at least.
The Pittsburgh Penguins ended a long run of playoff overtime struggles on Wednesday … and are now one win away from ending the Washington Capitals’ season.
Many expected the Penguins to crater on defense without Kris Letang (they were 2-8-1 in the regular season without him). While there were shaky moments, Pittsburgh emphasized its speed and other strengths in taking a 3-2 overtime thriller against Washington.
With that, the Penguins’ series lead grows to 3-1.
It was a thrilling, sometimes nasty contest, from Sidney Crosby shaking off an Alex Ovechkin slash, to Evgeni Malkin delivering a hit some thought was over the line and plenty of typical playoff skirmishes.
Ultimately, Matt Murray played another strong game and Patric Hornqvist scored the overtime-winner to put the Capitals in a tough spot.
The Penguins lost their previous eight playoff overtime games, so maybe it was just a matter of time before such a game went their way?
Then again, the history between the two teams is a little different:
If the Capitals want to advance beyond the second round for the first time in the Ovechkin era, they’ll need to accomplish quite the feat against arguably the hottest team in the NHL.
Sidney Crosby is known to get fiery, but even for his feisty standards, he was furious during the third period of Game 4.
An Alex Ovechkin slash caught Crosby on the hand, leaving the Pittsburgh Penguins star shaking his mitt and pleading for a call.
After that, Crosby left to get his hand looked at … but not before flipping out and destroying his stick.
You can watch it happen in the GIF and the videos above.
Crosby was able to return not that long after that moment, although we can only speculate regarding how his overall game will be affected if his hand isn’t 100 percent.
Tensions seem to rise with every passing game in the playoffs, particularly in a series with bad blood like the one between the Pittsburgh Penguins and Washington Capitals.
Kris Letang was suspended for his hit in Game 3, and some wonder if Evgeni Malkin should suffer a similar fate for his check on Daniel Winnik on Wednesday.
Winnik left the contest and has not yet returned during the third period.
Take a look at the hit in the video above and decide for yourself.
Fires devastated the Canadian city of Fort McMurray, and the St. Louis Blues are doing their part to help those who were affected.
Here’s what the team is doing to raise money during Game 4 against the Dallas Stars:
Proceeds raised through the team’s 50/50 raffle and the Blues for Kids silent auction will benefit families who have been misplaced by the fires.
Blues forward Scottie Upshall shared his thoughts with the Associated Press regarding several family members being among those evacuated from the area.
“It’s been a great city, a city that’s survived for many years through some tough times and for me, growing up there doesn’t seem too long ago,” Upshall said. “Places that probably aren’t standing anymore will be really, really tough to take. But as long as everyone’s OK, that’s the main thing.”
Other people from around the hockey world weighed in on the scary scene, including Ottawa Senators defenseman Chris Phillips, who told the Ottawa Citizen that “it hurts a lot.”
People shared some scary sights from the evacuation.