TORONTO, ON - FEBRUARY 1: Bobby Ryan #6 of the Ottawa Senators skates in the warm-up prior to playing against the Toronto Maple Leafs during an NHL game at the Air Canada Centre on February 1, 2014 in Toronto, Ontario, Canada. The Leafs defeated the Senators 6-3. (Photo by Claus Andersen/Getty Images)

Ryan ‘absolutely’ considering signing in Ottawa long-term


When Bobby Ryan was acquired from Anaheim last summer, many Sens fans were apprehensive about his contract — mostly because it ran out after the 2014-15 campaign.

Today, those fans might be breathing a little earlier.

In speaking with the Ottawa Citizen, Ryan indicated he’d be more than willing to look at signing an extension with the Sens — here’s more, from the Citizen:

“For me, I love it here. We love it here, more importantly. It’s been a great change for us,” said Ryan, in reference to his fiancée, Danielle Rhodes. “So, when the time comes, if that’s the route Bryan wants to go, we’ll sit down and have a conversation, certainly we’ll do that.”

Even the winter from hell doesn’t seem to have scared Ryan off. Yet.

Ryan was asked if he could see himself being in Ottawa on a long-term contract.

“Yeah, absolutely, and I said that in Anaheim,” said Ryan, drafted second overall by the Ducks in 2005, just behind Sidney Crosby. “When you get drafted by an organization or traded to an organization, you want to reward that organization, you want to be a part of that organization for a long-term deal.”

Ryan, 27, had an interesting first season in Ottawa. He finished with a respectable 23 goals and 48 points in 70 games, but was infamously left off the U.S. Olympic team (because he couldn’t spell intense, apparently) and was shut down last week after undergoing sports hernia surgery — suggesting that some of his stretches of underwhelming play this year came as a result of trying to play through injury.

Overall, Ryan said he season was just so-so, but sounded appreciative of the organization recognizing he was gutting it out with the sports hernia.

“Everyone in the dressing room was supportive and wanted me to be out there, even if I wasn’t a hundred per cent,” he said. “I appreciated the guys for acknowledging that.”

Video: Evgeni Malkin leaves Oilers spinning

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Yes, there’s a lot of drama surrounding the Pittsburgh Penguins, whether it’s founded on serious problems or merely speculation.

It’s easy to get swept up in all of that and ignore the fact that, hey, they still have Evgeni Malkin and Sidney Crosby. Those two can really heal wounds with their on-ice play, and in Saturday’s case, Malkin is taking over against the Edmonton Oilers.

His spin-o-rama goal above was a real jaw-dropper. He also scored Pittsburgh’s second tally:

These highlights feel like Malkin’s way of saying “It’s going to be just fine.”

Lightning’s first fight this season: Ryan Callahan vs. Kyle Okposo

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Fighting is down more or less across the board in the NHL, but the Tampa Bay Lightning might be the franchise least interested in dropping the gloves.

Ryan Callahan vs. Kyle Okposo already has some name recognition to it, yet it gets some bonus points for being the Bolts’ first fighting major of 2015-16.

It … probably loses those bonus points in being run-of-the-mill.

Hey, be fair; the Lightning are clearly out of practice.

Oilers GM doesn’t want to force a trade for the sake of a trade

Peter Chiarelli

It must be a helpless feeling to sit idly by while your team continues to flail, but such emotions are what opposing GMs love to prey on.

Edmonton Oilers GM Peter Chiarelli hasn’t been around through much of the suffering for this hapless franchise, yet that doesn’t mean he’s immune to the calls for improvement. To his credit, he’s not buckling under that pressure.

You can see and hear his full comments below:

If you don’t feel like playing the video, the message is simple enough.

Chiarelli isn’t happy with Edmonton’s record – he hasn’t “seen progression” in ways that he was expecting, but again … he doesn’t want to force moves.

Long story short, he can “sleep at night,” even if he’s disappointed.

Is he right to take a relaxed approach, though? Maybe it’s time to blow up a part of what isn’t working? Have some fun armchair GM’ing on this one.

Slump busters: Simmonds, Couturier end long scoring droughts in win over Rangers


It’s been a good few days to be a fan of the Philadelphia Flyers, as their team delivered not once, but twice during Thanksgiving weekend.

The Flyers picked up a 3-2 OT win over the Predators on Friday before shutting out the New York Rangers, 3-0, on Saturday.

It was a good afternoon for three players in particular.

Both Wayne Simmonds and Sean Couturier ended long scoring slumps.

Simmonds’ two goals were his first in seven games, while Couturier scored for the first time in his last 13 contests.

Goaltender Steve Mason also had a solid outing against the Rangers.

The 27-year-old turned aside all 24 shots he faced including this great save on Dominic Moore:

The Flyers lost defenseman Nick Schultz to an upper-body injury in the first period after he took a big hit from Dylan McIlrath.

Luke Schenn defended his fallen teammate by dropping the gloves with McIlrath, which didn’t go unnoticed by his teammates.

The Rangers are now on a season-high three-game losing streak. Their lack of effort has to be concerning for their head coach Alain Vigneault.

The Flyers outshot the Rangers 30-14 over the final 40 minutes.