Flames to keep rookie Monahan for season

3 Comments

The Calgary Flames had a big decision on their hands regarding the future of star freshman Sean Monahan.

On Wednesday, they made it.

The Flames announced they’re keeping the 19-year-old center for the remainder of the season, rather than returning him to his junior club in Ottawa.

Monahan, who sits third among all rookie skaters with nine points in nine games, has been the focus of much conversation in recent weeks. While he’s been an important contributor in Calgary (t-2nd in points) and deserving of his spot in the NHL, arguments have been made suggesting the Flames — not considered to be a playoff contender — should return him to junior and save a year of his entry-level contract in the process.

But, according to Flames GM Jay Feaster, the organization just couldn’t hold the sixth overall pick at the 2013 NHL Entry Draft back.

“We feel good about [Monahan],” Feaster told the team website. “We feel good about the decision we’ve made.

“I think he’s a unique individual… in his determination. He’s a 19-year-old going on 29 years old.”

The argument about keeping Monahan up will likely continue, but it’s important to remember one thing — the Flames made it clear from the onset of training camp that playing time and positions on the team would have to be earned. Telling a player that, then having him earn his spot, then taking it away could send a mixed message, and possibly affect the relationship between organization and prospect.

It’s worth noting, however, that Feaster didn’t rule out the possibility of Monahan representing Canada at the 2014 World Juniors.

“We’re a big believer in the [World Juniors] and what they do for players,” he said.

The ’14 tournament runs from Dec. 26 to Jan. 5 in Malmo, Sweden.

Sabres recall Justin Bailey, son of former Bills linebacker

NEWARK, NJ - JUNE 30:  Justin Bailey, drafted #52 overall by the Buffalo Sabres, looks on after he was drafted in the second round during the 2013 NHL Draft at the Prudential Center on June 30, 2013 in Newark, New Jersey.  (Photo by Bruce Bennett/Getty Images)
Getty
Leave a comment

The Buffalo Sabres have recalled forward Justin Bailey from AHL Rochester.

It’s the first time Bailey, a second-round pick in 2013, has ever been called up to the NHL. The 20-year-old joins the big club after piling up 11 points (5G, 6A) in his last eight games for the Americans.

Most Sabres fans will know that Bailey is from Buffalo (technically, Williamsville), the son of former Bills linebacker Carlton Bailey. (To learn more, click on this Buffalo News story from July.)

The Sabres play Thursday in Philadelphia, where Bailey will reportedly make his NHL debut.

To make room for Bailey on Buffalo’s roster, Zemgus Girgensons (lower body) was placed on injured reserve.

Yeo was ‘disappointed’ to see Hoppy the rabbit holding a ‘YEO MUST GO’ sign

Minnesota Wild head coach Mike Yeo argues a call in the second period of an NHL hockey game against the Nashville Predators Tuesday, March 17, 2015, in Nashville, Tenn. (AP Photo/Mark Humphrey)
AP
Leave a comment

Thing have gone from bad to weird in Minnesota, where embattled Wild coach Mike Yeo was “disappointed” to see Zenon Konopka’s rabbit holding a sign that read, “YEO MUST GO.”

Hey, we told you things had gotten weird.

Konopka, a former Wild player, took to Twitter last night after Minnesota’s latest loss.

Here’s what Konopka tweeted:

And what did Yeo think about that?

“I really don’t care what he says,” he told the Star Tribune, apparently adding with a laugh, “I will say I was very disappointed to see Hoppy holding that sign.”

Now, according to the newspaper’s Michael Russo, “Konopka and Yeo had a lot of issues behind the scenes and that’s why [Konopka] ended up on waivers two Januarys ago.”

Still, that doesn’t change the fact that a lot of Wild fans agree with Hoppy, er, Konopka, and it doesn’t change the fact that the Wild could really, really use a win tomorrow at home to Washington.

Video: Anisimov, Niskanen, McDavid star in Goals of the Week

1 Comment

Nice work from Artem Anisimov and Matt Niskanen this week, but Connor McDavid‘s tally is on a different level.

You can pretty much bank on McDavid being in Goals of the Year, too. Just saying.

Oilers demote Nilsson, recall AHL standout Brossoit

Edmonton Oilers goalie Anders Nilsson, of Sweden, makes pad save against the Colorado Avalanche during the first period of an NHL hockey game Saturday, Dec. 19, 2015, in Denver. (AP Photo/David Zalubowski)
Getty Images
Leave a comment

Laurent Brossoit is getting another crack at the NHL.

On Wednesday, the Oilers announced they demoted Anders Nilsson — who, earlier this year, was carrying the starting gig in Edmonton — and recalled Brossoit from AHL Bakersfield.

Brossoit, 22, is an interesting story. Taken in the sixth round of the 2011 draft (164th overall), he’s really made strides over the last year. He made his big-league debut at the end of last season and performed extremely well, making 49 saves on 51 shots in a loss to San Jose.

This year, Brossoit was named an AHL All-Star. He’s posted a 14-8-3 record for the Condors thus far, with a 2.70 GAA and .921 save percentage.

As for Nilsson, his demotion comes after losing the starting gig to Cam Talbot. Nilsson has also struggled to find the good form shown in November, when he made 10 starts and posted a .915 save percentage.

In his last outing, the lanky Swede allowed three goals on 10 shots in an embarrassing 8-1 loss to the Isles.