Martin Brodeur

Brodeur says he never wanted to leave Devils: “All I know is New Jersey”


Turns out what many pegged as a bluff...really was a bluff.

That’s the word out of New Jersey today after Martin Brodeur agreed to a two-year, $9 million deal with the Devils.

Brodeur, who hired agent Pat Brisson to wade free agent waters after negotiations with the Devils went south, says he never really intended on leaving the place he’s called home for 20 NHL seasons.

“All I know is New Jersey,” Brodeur told the New York Post. “All my friends are in New Jersey. It was hard that people though I wanted to leave. I didn’t want to do that.”

After signing the deal, Brodeur admitted he hired Brisson largely to squeeze a two-year deal out of the Devils, rather than the one-year they were offering. By getting the Brisson to field offers from around the league, Brodeur put pressure on New Jersey GM Lou Lamoriello to tack on the extra year.

More, from The Post:

“A one year deal, I didn’t think was good for me,” Brodeur said. “In the back of my mind, New Jersey was the No. 1 choice, by far, but I talked to two teams, and it was interesting.

“Lou [Lamoriello] made every effort to keep me in New Jersey, tweaking it at our request in different areas on his one-year [offer]. But the big thing to me was the uncertainty of the possible lockout,” Brodeur said.

After receiving two-year offers elsewhere, the Devils made their two-year bid and Brodeur said he agreed late Sunday.

Other notes

While unofficial, sounds like Johan Hedberg has found work for next season. The catch? Nobody knows where. The Post reports Hedberg’s “agreed to a free agent deal, although it is uncertain with whom he is signing.” (UPDATE: It’s the Devils.)

— Brodeur said he spoke with Zach Parise about the possibility of re-signing in New Jersey. Marty’s take? “I think the Devils are still really high on his list.”

Oilers get Kronwall’d – in more ways than one

Niklas Kronwall
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When someone gets clobbered by Niklas Kronwall, they get Kronwall’d.

(His detractors may insist that the definition require the words “dirty” or “illegal,” but that’s a debate for another day.)

It’s easy to get lost in those thunderous hits and forget that the  Swedish defenseman also brings some skill to the table.

He made a big impact – literally and figuratively – in Detroit’s 4-3 overtime win against the Edmonton Oilers on Friday.

First, the Kronwalling:

Next, Kronwall’s overtime-winner:

It hasn’t always been pretty, but the Red Wings are leaning on guys like Kronwall and Dylan Larkin to stick with it.

Tonight’s win extends their point streak to six games (4-0-2), with five of those contests going to overtime.

Dubinsky – Crosby’s nemesis – gets the last laugh on Friday

Sidney Crosby, Brandon Dubinsky

Brandon Dubinsky isn’t a household name like Sidney Crosby is, yet for all the hype that Crosby vs. Alex Ovechkin gets, Dubinsky is the sort of guy who truly rankles No. 87.

It’s been getting that spotlight since the Columbus Blue Jackets faced off against the Pittsburgh Penguins in a brisk playoff series, though it wouldn’t be surprising if the bad blood stemmed to Dubinsky’s days with New York.

To some, Dubinsky’s cross-check on Crosby will resonate far more than the end result of this game:

The bottom line is that he’ll get the last laugh, at least for now. (In-game, that moment merely drew a minor penalty.)

That’s because Dubinsky set up the overtime game-winner, and the cherry on the top of that spite sundae came with Crosby being on the ice when it happened:

They’re not just rubbing the Penguins the wrong way.

Even Dubinsky kind of sort of admits that he may have been in the wrong.


More and more, the Blue Jackets are looking like a nuisance … possibly one that will grind their way to an unlikely playoff berth. They improved to 8-4-0 in November after a disastrous 2-10-0 October.

In other words, there’s at least a chance that we may see these increasingly bitter rivals butt heads in another playoff series.

Eichel’s sweet snipe helps Sabres snap six-game skid

Jack Eichel
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The Buffalo Sabres probably deserved better during at least some chunks of their six-game skid, yet Jack Eichel swooped in on Friday to remind fans that there’s a light shining at the end of the tunnel.

You can watch his goal from tonight’s eventual 4-1 win against the Carolina Hurricanes in the video above.

That’s not necessarily the absolute height of his on-ice magic, yet it clearly gave his team a lift:

Call this a healthy reminder that Eichel has the ability to change games, something Buffalo fans hope to get used to.

Report: Likely no suspension for Matt Beleskey’s hit on Derek Stepan


Alain Vigneault went there in comparing Matt Beleskey‘s hit on Derek Stepan to the notorious check Aaron Rome delivered on Nathan Horton many moons ago, but the league seems to disagree.

While Rome sat through that memorable Stanley Cup Final between Boston and Vancouver, it sounds like Beleskey won’t face any further discipline, according to ESPN’s Pierre LeBrun.

In the unlikely event that anything changes, PHT will make note.

The next game between the Rangers and Bruins takes place at Madison Square Garden on Jan. 11. Will these bad feelings linger?