Brendan Smith

Video: Smith erases Wings’ bad puck luck


The Detroit Red Wings have gotten plenty of bad luck on the injury front this season and they got a bit of unfortunate puck luck while on the power-play this afternoon. This time though, it didn’t cost them.

Down 1-0 to the Minnesota Wild in the first period and with every point vital to Detroit, David Legwand fired a shot that hit the post, bounced off Wild goaltender Darcy Kuemper’s back and then sailed across the crease and away from the net.

Defenseman Brendan Smith was already positioning himself towards the net when it happened though and he charged at the rebound before flinging the puck into the net.

You can view that sequence below:

The Red Wings are one point shy of the Columbus Blue Jackets and the second Wild Card spot, but they have played in one less game, not counting their current contest against Minnesota. Columbus won’t play today, so whether or not Detroit finishes the night with an edge in the Wild Card race is entirely dependent on the outcome of this game.

Columbus has a firm lead on the tiebreaker (wins minus shootout victories), so an overtime or shootout loss today won’t allow Detroit to surpass the Blue Jackets.

Kings grab goalie insurance by signing Budaj

LOS ANGELES, CA - SEPTEMBER 22: Jhonas Enroth #1 and Peter Budaj #31 of the Los Angeles Kings stretch before a game against the Arizona Coyotes at STAPLES Center on September 22, 2015 in Los Angeles, California. (Photo by Andrew D. Bernstein/NHLI via Getty Images)
via Los Angeles Kings
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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.

Kings, NHLPA announce settlement in Richards grievance

Los Angeles Kings v New York Rangers

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?

Stay tuned.