Defenseman Marc Staal returned for Game 3 of the New York Rangers’ first-round series against the Washington Capitals on Monday after missing roughly two months due to a scary eye injury.
The Rangers have moved him back on the sidelines though after he logged 17:17 minutes in his return. He wasn’t statistically noteworthy in the Rangers’ 4-3 victory, but he did have an impact in that contest.
“It’s huge. He makes the D-core calm,” Rangers forward Derek Stepan said after Monday’s game. “He’s got a presence about him that he can just control a game. He did a great job tonight.”
It’s not clear why Staal isn’t playing, but he did admit on Monday that his “eye was kind of acting up” last week, according to the Bergen Record’s Tom Gulitti.
The good news for New York Rangers’ fans is Ryane Clowe will return from an undisclosed injury. He’s projected to play with Derek Dorsett and Arron Asham in his 2013 playoffs debut.
In slightly less interesting Los Angeles Kings news than the latest in the Mike Richards fiasco, the team handed Peter Budaj a one-year, two-way deal on Friday.
The veteran goalie’s contract pays $575K on the NHL level and $100K in the AHL (though it’s $150K guaranteed), according to Hockey’s Cap.
At the moment, it sounds like Budaj will be third on the Kings’ goalie depth chart. That says as much about how things have been going lately for Los Angeles than Budaj’s work on a PTO.
As noted above, one of the more significant moves in Budaj’s favor came when the New York Islanders claimed Jean-Francois Berube off of waivers this week.
The Kings actually waived Budaj before signing him, so this has to be a relief to a goalie with a fairly robust resume as a backup.
All apologies to Budaj, but it’s probably true that the Kings would prefer not to see him at the NHL level very often in 2015-16.
The Los Angeles Kings announced today that they have “reached an agreement with Mike Richards to resolve the grievance filed in relation to the termination of his NHL Standard Players Contract. The terms are agreeable to all parties.”
The club said that it will not be commenting further “on the terms” of the settlement.
The NHLPA released a similar statement.
It was reported earlier in the week that a settlement was close to being reached; however, it wasn’t clear what salary-cap penalties the Kings would incur.
We’re starting to find out some details now:
How the final numbers differ from what the Kings would have incurred if they’d bought Richards out will be interesting to see. And if there are differences, how will they be justified?