Jarome Iginla

Iginla’s already being asked about his upcoming UFA status

16 Comments

The NHL board of governors hasn’t even voted on the new CBA yet, but the fact that there will be a season is enough to once again spark the question: What does the future hold for Jarome Iginla?

He’s scheduled to become an unrestricted free agent this summer and he’ll turn 36 on July 1.

Anything can happen, especially in a shortened campaign, but the Calgary Flames aren’t regarded as a current or emerging Stanley Cup contender. Given that, Iginla might end up getting traded or simply chose to leave when his contract’s up.

“I didn’t expect that question so early. Yeah, it’s right back at it,” Iginla said in a Calgary Sun report.

“I’m really just excited to get playing again and have that opportunity to play in the NHL and compete here in Calgary.

“It would be my preference to stay here, for sure, and play on a good team, which I believe we will be, and to win here.”

The good news for the Flames is that if they do struggle out of the gate and decide that it’s finally time to trade Iginla, they will have a new tool at their disposal.

The CBA will give teams the ability to retain part of its player’s salary and/or cap hit when he’s traded. That would make Iginla’s prorated $7 million cap hit much easier for a contender to absorb and could allow Calgary to milk better prospects or picks out of any potential deal.

In the short-term though, Iginla has other things on his mind.

“I know it’s going to take some time to win some fans back, but for us in Calgary, the best thing we can do as a team is come out, be exciting and play hard and win,” Iginla said.

“Hopefully they come out and enjoy that, but I definitely understand how ticked off fans have been and they have that right to be. It’s totally understandable.”

Blues put Pietrangelo on IR with knee injury

Pietrangelo-Coyle
Leave a comment

Not good news for the St. Louis Blues — the club announced this morning that defenseman Alex Pietrangelo has been placed on injured reserve with a right-knee injury. He’ll be re-evaluated in three weeks.

Pietrangelo suffered the injury Saturday in a knee-on-knee collision with Minnesota’s Charlie Coyle.

Based on the timeline provided, the Blues will be without their leader in average ice time (26:40) until at least the end of the month. St. Louis plays 10 times between now and Feb. 29, which also happens to be the trade deadline.

The big question, of course, is whether Pietrangelo will be ready to go upon re-evaluation.

The first day of the playoffs is April 13.

Update:

Related: Armstrong wants Blues to get healthy before any trades are made

“I wonder if that’s Crosby, what happens?’ — AV upset after McDonagh concussed by Simmonds

Alain Vigneault
AP
11 Comments

Alain Vigneault took another shot at the NHL’s Department of Player Safety today.

This time, the Rangers head coach was upset about the lack of supplementary discipline for Philadelphia’s Wayne Simmonds in the wake of Saturday’s altercation with New York captain Ryan McDonagh.

“An All-Star player gets sucker-punched, goes down,” Vigneault said, per The Record. “I wonder if that’s (Sidney) Crosby, what happens? What are the consequences? And, on top of that, a player breaks his stick, throws it at the referees. In the rulebook, that’s automatic. It’s three games. Nothing happens. It’s not even on the sheet after the game.”

Simmonds’ punch left McDonagh concussed and unable to play tonight versus New Jersey, with no timetable for his return.

Earlier this season, Vigneault voiced his frustration with the league after Rangers center Derek Stepan suffered broken ribs in Boston on a hit from Bruins forward Matt Beleskey.

Vigneault felt the hit was late.

“I remember Aaron Rome in this building, .6 seconds late, getting suspended four games in the Stanley Cup Final,” the former Vancouver Canucks coach said, recalling the contentious 2011 final.

Beleskey was not suspended.

Crosby, Karlsson and Trocheck are NHL’s three stars of the week

Pittsburgh Penguins' Sidney Crosby celebrates his goal during the second period of an NHL hockey game against the Carolina Hurricanes in Pittsburgh, Sunday, Jan. 17, 2016. (AP Photo/Gene J. Puskar)
AP
Leave a comment

Penguins center Sidney Crosby, Senators defenseman Erik Karlsson, and Panthers center Vincent Trocheck have been named the NHL’s three stars for the past week.

From the NHL:

Crosby led the League in goals and points (5-3-8) in three games as the Penguins (26-18-7, 59 points) earned four of a possible six points to secure the second Wild Card position in the Eastern Conference.

Karlsson led the League in assists and ranked second in points (0-7-7) in three games as the Senators (24-23-6, 54 points) won one of three starts for the week.

Trocheck notched six points (3-3—6) in three games, helping the Panthers (31-15-6, 68 points) widen their lead atop the Atlantic Division to six points.

Related: Red-hot Crosby could make Pens a flawed (but dangerous) dark horse

Malkin to miss third straight game with lower-body injury

Evgeni Malkin
AP
2 Comments

Evgeni Malkin‘s “nagging” lower-body injury will keep him out at least one more game.

Penguins coach Mike Sullivan said this morning that the star center will sit out tonight at home against the Ducks. Malkin already missed two contests this weekend in Florida. His status is day-to-day.

The Penguins lost, 6-3, in Tampa on Friday, but rebounded Saturday with a 3-2 OT win over the Panthers.

Pittsburgh’s next game after tonight’s is Wednesday at home versus the Rangers.