Bryan Murray

Sens GM Murray: I’ll deal prospects for offense


After averaging just 2.33 goals per game this season, the Ottawa Senators know they need to improve offensively.

And nobody seems to know it more than their GM, Bryan Murray.

Murray met with media on Tuesday and said increasing offense is his No. 1 offseason priority:


As far as prospects go, well, Murray has no shortage of them to deal.

Ottawa iced one of the league’s youngest teams this season, which included the youngest guy on the roster — 20-year-old Mika Zibanejad — who finished fourth on the team in scoring with 20 points.

All told, the Sens had 15 different players dress this season that were 23 or younger and have three former first-round picks yet to make their NHL debuts:  Matt Puempel (24th overall, 2011), Stefan Noesen (21st overall, 2011) and Cody Ceci (15th overall, 2012).

It’s clear Ottawa could use some more offense, but it could also use some size as well. The club wasn’t overly imposing in terms of physicality last year and got even smaller at the deadline by acquiring 5-foot-8 Cory Conacher from Tampa Bay.

“I like a bigger type of player,” Murray explained. “It gives you a better chance, especially in playoffs.”

It stands to reason that Murray will be aggressive in trying to move some pieces.

He feels the Sens are on the verge of contending for a title — they’ve made the playoffs the last two seasons and won their first series since 2007 — and can now reap the rewards for building a successful prospect pool.

“I think we’re a serious contender,” Murray told the Ottawa Sun. “We’ll have to an improved hockey club.

“A whole bunch of us want to win right now.”

Stars place Lehtonen on IR, call up Campbell and Nemeth

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Kari Lehtonen will miss at least a few games with the upper-body injury he suffered the other night against Ottawa. The Dallas Stars announced today that they’ve placed the 32-year-old goalie on injured reserve, retroactive to Tuesday.

With Lehtonen out, Jack Campbell has been called up from AHL Texas to be Antti Niemi‘s backup. The Stars host Vancouver Friday, with a game at Minnesota Saturday.

Campbell, the 11th overall pick in the 2010 draft, has struggled in the AHL this season, going 3-3-0 with an .873 save percentage.

The Stars have also recalled defenseman Patrik Nemeth after the 23-year-old completed his 14-day conditioning assignment.

Related: Campbell credits ECHL stint for turning his game around

Gleason ends tryout with ‘Canes

Tim Gleason, David Desharnais
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Tim Gleason has likely played his last NHL game. The 32-year-old defenseman has informed the Carolina Hurricanes that he no longer wishes to continue his professional tryout.

“Tim informed us today he wasn’t going to continue to pursue his tryout,” said GM Ron Francis, per the club’s website. “He looked and felt good physically, but didn’t feel up to the grind of the NHL mentally.”

Gleason started last season with Carolina before he was traded to Washington in February.

In his career, he’s played 727 NHL games, plus 32 more in the playoffs.

Isles call Strome back up

Ryan Strome, Johnny Boychuk

Ryan Strome has been called back to the New York Islanders, the club announced this morning.

The 22-year-old returns to the NHL after eight games with AHL Bridgeport Sound. He had been sent there three weeks ago, after a tough start to the season.

Strome had two goals and two assists during his stint with the Tigers.

The Isles’ next game is Friday at Florida.

McLellan on Oilers’ loss to ‘Canes: ‘That’s a really disappointing effort from our hockey club’


With the addition of Connor McDavid, 2015-16 was supposed to be the year Edmonton showed significant progress on the ice.

We’re less than two months into the season, McDavid’s out because of a broken clavicle, and the so-called progress just hasn’t been there.

On Wednesday, the Oilers hit a new low, as they were handed their fifth loss in their last six games at the hands of the Carolina Hurricanes.

Ryan Nugent-Hopkins opened the scoring in the first period, but Carolina answered with four unanswered goals by Jordan Staal, Elias Lindholm, Jeff Skinner and Andrej Nestrasil to win 4-1.

“We got outcompeted in the second period, badly,” Mark Letestu told the team’s website. “Whether it was little puck battles or even just executing on systems. It played right into their game. When you get behind a team like this that’s so dominant in the circle it’s tough to generate chances to come back. We didn’t deserve to win this one at all.”

As if things weren’t bad enough, the Oilers also lost Nail Yakupov to injury after a linesman (yes, a linesman) fell on top of him.

After the game, head coach Todd McLellan didn’t hold back:

Edmonton collected 14 points in the first 22 games of the 2014-15 season and after the same amount of games this year, they have just one more point.

They’re currently alone in last place.