Marc-Edouard Vlasic

San Jose extends Vlasic: five years, $21 million


The San Jose Sharks have agreed to a five-year contract extension with defenseman Marc-Edouard Vlasic.

According to reports, the deal is worth $21 million — an average annual cap hit of $4.2 million.

Vlasic, 25, has spent his entire six-year career in San Jose, emerging as a solid top-four defenseman that rarely misses games.

Aside from a lower-body injury that cost him 17 contests during the 2009-10 season, Vlasic has played in at least 80 games every year, including all 82 during the 2011-12 campaign.

Last year, Vlasic was second on the Sharks in ice time with 23:09 per game, scoring four goals while adding 19 assists for 23 points.

Extending Vlasic is a savvy move by Sharks GM Doug Wilson. This year’s UFA market showed a noted price increase for top-four defensemen (see: Dennis Wideman and Jason Garrison) and by locking Vlasic up, the Sharks avoid him going unrestricted next summer.

Vlasic is heading into the final season of a four-year, $12.4 million deal that pays $3.1 million annually.

Blues’ Shattenkirk suffers lower-body injury

Kevin Shattenkirk
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This hasn’t been the best night for St. Louis sports fans.

Obviously, the MLB’s Cardinals getting bounced from the playoffs is a bigger deal, but the Blues face bad news, too.

While they’re currently leading the Calgary Flames by a score of 4-3, they’ll need to hang on without Kevin Shattenkirk, whose night is over thanks to a lower-body injury.

There’s no word yet on how severe the issue might be.

Naturally, the Blues must hope that it’s minor, as Shattenkirk is one of the NHL’s truly underrated assets on the blueline.

Stephanie (@MyRegularFace) tracked down a moment when the injury may have happened:

It’s not all rosy for the Flames, either, as Lance Bouma suffered an injury as well.

Measure of revenge? Red Wings bottle Lightning


In some ways, it really felt like their first-round series.

For all the talent on both ends of the rink with the Detroit Red Wings and Tampa Bay Lightning, each squad can really smother opponents defensively when things go that way.

Through two periods, the two teams were very quiet. Things really picked up when Justin Abdelkader unleashed a big hit, a moment that injected enough life into the proceedings for the Red Wings to eventually build a 3-1 win.

Maybe they’re slipping under the radar a bit compared to previous iterations of the team, but it’s interesting that the Red Wings are now undefeated in three games.

They’ve been impressive at times, too, outscoring opponents by a combined score of 11-4.

Call it a refreshing time after Mike Babcock or merely carryover from a subtly solid run last season, but either way, the Red Wings may just be able to keep up their end of a brewing rivalry.