Kaleta, 26, has spent all six of his NHL seasons with the Sabres organization, appearing in a career-high 63 games last year (while posting a career-high 116 penalty minutes.)
One of the league’s premier pests, Kaleta gained infamy last season upon being suspended four games for headbutting Philly’s Jakub Voracek. During NHL discipline czar Brendan Shanahan’s suspension explanation, it was revealed Kaleta was something of a serial headbutter.
Retaining Kaleta is part of Buffalo’s offseason initiative to become tougher to play against. Earlier, GM Darcy Regier traded Derek Roy to Dallas in exchange for Steve Ott and Adam Pardy, the former also regarded as one of the league’s preeminent pests.
“Nope,” Dubinsky said. “You know, I’ve played the same way my whole career and I’m not going to change. The next time I have an opportunity to play (Crosby), I’m going to play him hard.”
In case you’re wondering, that next opportunity comes on Dec. 21 in Pittsburgh, assuming that both players are healthy and not suspended.
One can understand Dubinsky’s perspective, although such honesty would be that much more interesting if there’s another incident with Crosby. His initial reaction to the hit was interestingly candid, admitting that his “stick rode up” on his adversary.
Would that stance – which, from a harsher view, might seem flippant to Dubinsky’s critics – open the door for a bigger future bit of a discipline?
Maybe, maybe not … but at least his comments aren’t as inflammatory as what John Tortorella said (at least on the record).
Bad news for Boedker: Coyotes won’t face Sens again in 2015-16