Steve McCarthy #5 of the Atlanta Thrashers defends against Jiri Tlusty #11 of the Toronto Maple Leafs during their NHL game at the Air Canada Centre on February 23, 2008 in Toronto, Ontario.
(February 23, 2008 - Source: None/Getty Images North America)

Steve McCarthy follows Bob Hartley to Flames’ organization

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After spending two seasons playing in Europe, Steve McCarthy is returning to North America. He has agreed to terms with the Calgary’s AHL-affiliate, the Abbotsford Heat, according to the Flames’ official website.

McCarthy was taken by the Chicago Blackhawks with the 23rd overall pick in the 1999 NHL Entry Draft. Since then he has recorded 55 points and 168 penalty minutes in 302 career NHL games with the Blackhawks, Vancouver Canucks, and Atlanta Thrashers.

He hasn’t played in the NHL since 2007-08, but has previously worked with new Flames coach Bob Hartley, both as a member of the Thrashers and last season when they were both part of the Swiss Elite League’s Zurich Lions.

McCarthy had three goals and seven assists in 27 games with Zurich and Hartley guided the team to the Swiss Elite League Championship.

Here are the 10 oldest players to play a game this season

Jaromir Jagr
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This isn’t breaking news or anything. We just thought you’d like to know that three of the NHL’s 10 oldest players (who’ve played at least one game this season) are members of the Florida Panthers.

Oh, and the Panthers’ starting goalie? He’s the oldest starter in the league. (Scroll down.)

Here’s the list of skaters, topped by 43-year-old Jaromir Jagr:


Yet another veteran Panther, 36-year-old defenseman Brian Campbell, ranks 17th on the list.

Granted, the above list does not include 39-year-old Patrik Elias (who’s hurt) or 39-year-old Eric Boulton (who just re-signed with the Isles). As soon as those two play, Thornton will get pushed out of the top 10.

Now here’s the list of goalies who’ve started at least one game this season, topped by 36-year-old Roberto Luongo:


For the record, Luongo isn’t the oldest goalie under contract. That would be Minnesota’s Niklas Backstrom, who’s 37.

Related: Can Florida’s old guys hang on while the young guys get better?

Hamburglar (groin) returns, Sens demote O’Connor

Andrew Hammond
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Matt O'Connor‘s time in the Canadian capital was brief, but still noteworthy.

O’Connor, the losing netminder in Sunday’s “Battle of the Backups” against Montreal — Habs No. 2 Mike Condon got the win — has been sent down to AHL Binghamton to pave the way for Andrew Hammond‘s return from a groin injury, per the Sun.

The Hamburglar has been out since the preseason, but his return is earlier than expected.

He was originally supposed to miss the first two weeks, yet now sounds as though he’ll play one of Ottawa’s two games on an upcoming road trip through Columbus and Pittsburgh.

It’s going to be interesting to see if Hammond can replicate the success he had last season, when he came out of nowhere to go 20-1-2 with a 1.79 GAA and .941 save percentage, and finish seventh in Vezina voting.