P.K. Subban

Report: Subban wins Norris Trophy


P.K. Subban has captured his first-ever Norris Trophy as the NHL’s top defenseman, according to Sportsnet’s Nick Kypreos.

On Monday, Kypreos tweeted that “confirmed word out of Montreal” is Subban will be awarded the trophy during the Stanley Cup finals, which get underway this Wednesday at Chicago’s United Center.

Subban, 23, earned his first-ever Norris nomination this season by tying a career-high with 38 points in 42 games — the same number of points he registered two seasons ago over the course of 71 games.

One of the major reasons for his nomination was noted improvement to his defensive game. Subban went from a minus player his first year in the league to plus-12 this season, the highest total of his career.

His emergence as a bonafide No. 1 defenseman also spurred Montreal to a great turnaround season. The Habs finished dead last in the Eastern Conference last year but captured the No. 2 seed this season, winning the Northeast Division for the first time since 2008.

If Kypreo’s report holds accurate, Subban will be the first Habs defenseman to win the award since Chris Chelios, and will join Hockey Hall of Famers Larry Robinson, Jacques Laperriere, Tom Johnson and Doug Harvey as Montreal defensemen to win the award.

Kassian suspended without pay, placed in Stage 2 of Substance Abuse Program

Anaheim Ducks v Vancouver Canucks
Leave a comment

Zack Kassian may have avoided major injuries stemming from his Sunday car accident, but it likely sent the signal that he may need help.

The response: he was placed in Stage Two of the Substance Abuse and Behavioral Health Program (SABH) of the NHL and NHLPA on Monday.

According to the league’s release, Kassian “will be suspended without pay until cleared for on-ice competition by the program administrators.”

Speaking of being suspended without pay, here’s a key detail:

The 24-year-old ended up with a broken nose and broken foot from that accident. The 2015-16 season was set to be his first campaign in the Montreal Canadiens organization after a tumultuous time with the Vancouver Canucks.

Kassian spoke of becoming more mature heading to Montreal, but the Canadiens were critical of his actions, wondering how many wake-up calls someone can get.

In case you’re wondering about the difference between stage one and two:

Add Lecavalier to list of expensive Flyers healthy scratches

Vincent Lecavalier

Are the Philadelphia Flyers aiming for some sort of record when it comes to expensive (potential) healthy scratches?

While lineups are obviously subject to change, CSNPhilly.com notes that Vincent Lecavalier appears to be among a rather rich group of Flyers who are expected to sit during their season-opener.

Also likely to be in street clothes: Sam Gagner and Luke Schenn.

That’s $11.3 million in cap space rotting on the bench.

“I really don’t know what to say,” Lecavalier said. “I’ll practice hard and be ready when they call me up.”

The CSNPhilly.com quotes from Lecavalier, Gagner and Schenn only get sadder from there, a reminder that there are human beings attached to these numbers – whether you focus on disappointing stats or bloated salaries.

Flyers fans with the urge to reach for an Alka-Setzler can at least take some comfort in knowing that the team will see $6.8 million in savings after this season, as both Gagner and Schenn are on expiring deals.

It could be a long season, though, and this Lecavalier headache may not truly end until his contract expires following the 2017-18 campaign.