Kevin Shattenkirk

Blues’ Shattenkirk ‘on cloud nine’ after signing new deal

It’s been a good couple days for Blues defenseman Kevin Shattenkirk. He signed a new deal with the team for four years worth $17 million and he couldn’t be happier about that.

“Obviously I’m on cloud nine right now. This is a great opportunity for me,” Shattenkirk said on a team conference call today. “To have the type of commitment that the Blues made and the faith that they have in me to perform and showing it in this way is pretty special.

“We both wanted to get something done and I think there was a deal to be had the whole way through…it’s nice to have this weight off my back and focus on things going forward for the rest of the summer.”

By that he means picking out a sweet place on the beach to relax until training camp starts in September. Well, that’s what I’d do at least.

Next up for Blues GM Doug Armstrong: Getting Shattenkirk’s restricted free agent pal on the blue line, Alex Pietrangelo, locked up to a long-term deal.

After being a Norris Trophy finalist last season and having another strong campaign this season, you can figure he’ll have a lofty deal headed his way. For what it’s worth, Armstrong said they’ll match any offers on their restricted free agents.

After lopsided loss, Julien says it’s ‘not about the young D’

Claude Julien

The Boston Bruins’ young, makeshift defense failed to come through Thursday night as the B’s were thumped, 6-2, on home ice by the Winnipeg Jets.

Without injured veterans Zdeno Chara and Dennis Seidenberg, the defensive pairings were as follows:

Torey KrugAdam McQuaid
Joe MorrowKevan Miller
Matt IrwinZach Trotman

And let’s just say, turnovers were a factor:

That was Irwin getting checked off the puck there.

“I had the puck behind the net, and I went to one side of the net, and then I just didn’t use the net to my advantage,” he explained afterwards, per CSN New England. “He got his stick in there, obviously stripped me of the puck, and we all know what happened after that. I take full blame for that one.”

But head coach Claude Julien wasn’t willing to blame inexperience for the poor outing.

“It’s not about youth. It’s not about the young D,” said Julien. “It’s about our game without the puck. I think we might have gotten a little excited here about our offense and forgot about the other part of our game.”

And to be fair, even Boston’s more accomplished d-men had their challenging moments.

Here’s Krug failing to get position on Nicolas Petan in front of the Bruins’ net:

All in all, it was a tough night.

“We’ll correct those [mistakes] tomorrow in practice,” said Irwin. “We’re a confident group in here. We liked our offense. We liked the chances we were getting. All those mistakes, D-zone, are something that we’re going to work on and get better every day.”

The Bruins host their rivals from Montreal on Saturday.

Greene named 11th captain in Devils history

Dion Phaneuf; Andy Greene
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Andy Greene has been named Bryce Salvador’s successor as New Jersey’s team captain.

Greene, an undrafted free agent that’s spent his entire nine-year career with the Devils organization, becomes the 11th captain in the franchise’s history and third American to wear the “C” (Zach Parise and Jamie Langenbrunner were the others).

A former standout at Miami of Ohio, Greene — who served as an alternate captain in each of the last two seasons — has developed into a steady, durable blueliner that hasn’t missed a game in three years. He’s also locked into the Devils long term, having signed a five-year, $25 million extension with the club last summer.

That deal kicks in this season, and runs through 2020.

As for the rest of the leadership group, four players will serve as alternate captains this season: Patrik Elias, Travis Zajac, Mike Cammalleri, and Adam Henrique.

Elias and Zajac both wore an “A” in New Jersey last year, while Cammalleri and Henrique are first-timers.