According to Vancouver defenseman Kevin Bieksa, there are “a lot of differences” between the system the Canucks employed for years under head coach Alain Vigneault and the one they’re currently learning under new bench boss John Tortorella.
Per The Province, Bieksa says the Canucks will play “more or less… a zone coverage” in the defensive end now, as opposed to man-on-man pressure. “So it’s being patient and taking care of your responsibilities.”
On offense, Bieksa says, “We’re going to need more pressure on the forecheck. We played fast last year but this is going to be a little more aggressive style.”
In terms of X’s and O’s, the style the Canucks play under Tortorella will be interesting to watch. Because for all the focus there’s been on shot-blocking, that’s just one aspect.
Also remember, the way Tortorella had the Rangers playing was a big reason he was fired, according to general manager Glen Sather, who believed, among other things, that his players were dumping the puck in too much under Tortorella.
Related: Apparently Glen Sather and Mike Gillis don’t see the game evolving the same way
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?