The Edmonton Oilers squeezed out a 3-2 shootout win on Sunday. They also might have made a new enemy in the process.
Dallas Stars winger Ryan Garbutt (pictured) made a huge impact in the game, scoring both of the Stars’ goals and injuring Ilya Bryzgalov in a collision. The 28-year-old might just become a marked man in the new version of the Pacific Division, as he’s likely not very popular with the Anaheim Ducks after delivering a hit on Dustin Penner that garnered a five-game suspension.
Both Bryzgalov (28 out of 29 saves) and Devan Dubnyk (15 out of 16) were challenged by the Stars, who finished a three-game homestand with a 1-0-2 record.
This could be a moment of truth for the Oilers. While they’re beyond a longshot with a 9-17-2 record, they play their next five games at home. If there was ever a time when they might charge toward respectability, this would be it.
One guy beyond their obvious set of top prospects to watch is David Perron. He assisted on the game-tying goal and scored the shootout winner tonight and has been a difference-maker when healthy.
Speaking of health, the Oilers also must keep an eye on Bryzgalov’s health, as he left tonight’s game with an upper-body injury thanks to Garbutt.
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?