Shea Weber #6 of the Nashville Predators awaits a face off against the Phoenix Coyotes in Game One of the Western Conference Semifinals during the 2012 NHL Stanley Cup Playoffs at Arena on April 27, 2012 in Glendale, Arizona. The Coyotes defeated the Predators 4-3 in overtime.
(April 26, 2012 - Source: Christian Petersen/Getty Images North America)

Weber excited about Preds’ future


Defenseman Shea Weber inked a 14-year, $110 million contract with the Philadelphia Flyers last summer, but the Nashville Predators ultimately exercised their right to match the contract.

Now, barring a trade, Nashville and Weber are stuck with each other through the 2025-26 campaign. However, even after his team finished with the fourth worst record in the NHL, Weber insists he wants to stay in Nashville.

“For sure, definitely,” Weber told The Tennessean. “I’m committed to everything here — committed to the team and coaching staff and my teammates, and committed to being better for them and getting back to the postseason.”

Weber had the opportunity to talk to Predators GM David Poile and the team captain expressed confidence in Poile’s abilities.

“I know I’m going to be here, and I’m excited about that,” Weber said. “With the direction we’re headed with the young guys and the guys coming back next year, it’s going to be a lot of fun.”

Poile also seems upbeat going into the summer. It helps that they won’t have to deal with a situation similar to last year when attempting to retain Weber and Ryan Suter consumed much of the team’s focus.

“That was a situation where we were paralyzed by that,” Poile said. “We got to July 4 or 5, and when all the dust settled, there was nowhere to go in terms of adding players or changing things around.

“Virtually all the guys we would have any interest in had gone in a different direction, so that hurt us from an improvement standpoint.”

Nashville has plenty of cap space and would like to spend it on acquiring “dynamic” forwards. The Predators scored an NHL-low 111 goals in 2013.

Vatrano presence: Bruins edge Red Wings in overtime

Frank Vatrano David Krejci
1 Comment

The Boston Bruins keep flipping the script.

In Wednesday’s case, it swerved to a “Cinderella” story, as little-known forward Frank Vatrano scored two of Boston’s three goals – including the overtime clincher – as the B’s beat the Detroit Red Wings 3-2 (OT).

Here’s his first goal of the night:

While this is his overtime game-winner:

It wasn’t a perfect night for the 21-year-old, yet it may have been a convincing one.

The Bruins continue to begin a month on a sour note before ending up with impressive sprees.

October: 0-3-0 start, finished month with four straight wins and victories in six of seven contests.

November: 0-3-0 start, losses in four of five; currently on a four-game winning strek with victories in five of six.

Boston faces a challenge in closing this month out against the Rangers on Friday, and it’s possible that this trend may continue, as they begin December with a three-game road trip through Western Canada.

More than anything else, the safest bet with the Bruins is for ups and downs.

Crosby roars, Malkin scores in OT for Penguins win

1 Comment

Controversy just seems to find the Pittsburgh Penguins. Credit Sidney Crosby & Co. for responding with a win on Wednesday.

Crosby generated two pretty goals, including this slam-dunk slapper:

… While Evgeni Malkin‘s overtime-winner stood as the Penguins managed a 4-3 overtime win against the St. Louis Blues tonight.

(You can see Malkin’s OT-clincher in the video above this post.)

Will this win and strong performance from Crosby silence murmurs about his relationship with Mario Lemieux? Probably not, yet it likely turns the volume down in some ways, including killing the “Is he struggling because of distractions” storyline.

You know, at least for a little while. Maybe.

Fight video: Claude Giroux vs. Nick Leddy

1 Comment

Claude Giroux isn’t the nastiest, most physical captain the Philadelphia Flyers have employed. Even so, he can be feisty at times.

Wednesday showed that, as he clearly wasn’t happy with an earlier Nick Leddy hit, and eventually got the New York Islanders defenseman to drop his gloves.

You can see the fight and the check that inspired that scrap in the video above.

It’s the fourth fight Giroux has been a part of, with his most recent adversary being may his most bitter rival.

Not a heavyweight bout between Giroux and Leddy, mind you, but sometimes it’s amusing to soak in such a rare sight.

Update: The fight may have inspired the Islanders more than the Flyers, as they bested Philly 3-1 on Wednesday.

Carter Hutton gets flipped, stays in game

Leave a comment

Carter Hutton is getting something that might make fellow Nashville Predators goalie Pekka Rinne jealous: goal support.

Still, there was at least one moment where Rinne was likely happy to be on the bench, as Hutton was left flipping during this collision with Buffalo Sabres forward Marcus Foligno:

Remarkably, Hutton remained in the game.

If you’re the type who loves adding to your “hockey players are tough” files, put this under the goalies section.

Check out this incredible shot of that moment:

Update: The Predators held off the Buffalo Sabres to win 3-2.