Calgary Flames v New Jersey Devils

Flames avoid arbitration with Colborne, ink two-year deal

The Calgary Flames avoided all salary arbitration headaches by locking Joe Colborne up to a two-year deal on Tuesday. Sportsnet’s Roger Millions reports that it’s worth $2.55 million overall ($1.275 million per season).

Colborne, 24, was part of the trade in which the Toronto Maple Leafs traded Tomas Kaberle to the Boston Bruins in Feb. 2011. He ended up playing 16 games spread over three seasons with the Maple Leafs, but this past season – his first with Calgary – was easily his most productive in the NHL. He scored 10 goals and 28 points in 80 games with the Flames.

He’s from the Calgary area, so playing for his hometown team must be quite a thrill. Here’s a little more about the big forward from SB Nation blog Matchsticks & Gasoline:

At 6’5″ and reportedly 220 lbs., Colborne is one of the biggest players on the Flames’ roster, but the 24-year-old is still learning how to use his size. It’s an asset that will come in handy assuming he continues to play on the right wing, a position the Flames are desperately lacking in, and one Colborne looked much better in when he switched.

Apparently he made some nice impressions last season:

This contract pushes the Flames over the salary cap floor, according to Cap Geek’s numbers. They still have a decision or two to make with restricted and/or unrestricted free agents, but it seems like much of their work is done this summer.

After lopsided loss, Julien says it’s ‘not about the young D’

Claude Julien

The Boston Bruins’ young, makeshift defense failed to come through Thursday night as the B’s were thumped, 6-2, on home ice by the Winnipeg Jets.

Without injured veterans Zdeno Chara and Dennis Seidenberg, the defensive pairings were as follows:

Torey KrugAdam McQuaid
Joe MorrowKevan Miller
Matt IrwinZach Trotman

And let’s just say, turnovers were a factor:

That was Irwin getting checked off the puck there.

“I had the puck behind the net, and I went to one side of the net, and then I just didn’t use the net to my advantage,” he explained afterwards, per CSN New England. “He got his stick in there, obviously stripped me of the puck, and we all know what happened after that. I take full blame for that one.”

But head coach Claude Julien wasn’t willing to blame inexperience for the poor outing.

“It’s not about youth. It’s not about the young D,” said Julien. “It’s about our game without the puck. I think we might have gotten a little excited here about our offense and forgot about the other part of our game.”

And to be fair, even Boston’s more accomplished d-men had their challenging moments.

Here’s Krug failing to get position on Nicolas Petan in front of the Bruins’ net:

All in all, it was a tough night.

“We’ll correct those [mistakes] tomorrow in practice,” said Irwin. “We’re a confident group in here. We liked our offense. We liked the chances we were getting. All those mistakes, D-zone, are something that we’re going to work on and get better every day.”

The Bruins host their rivals from Montreal on Saturday.

Greene named 11th captain in Devils history

Dion Phaneuf; Andy Greene
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Andy Greene has been named Bryce Salvador’s successor as New Jersey’s team captain.

Greene, an undrafted free agent that’s spent his entire nine-year career with the Devils organization, becomes the 11th captain in the franchise’s history and third American to wear the “C” (Zach Parise and Jamie Langenbrunner were the others).

A former standout at Miami of Ohio, Greene — who served as an alternate captain in each of the last two seasons — has developed into a steady, durable blueliner that hasn’t missed a game in three years. He’s also locked into the Devils long term, having signed a five-year, $25 million extension with the club last summer.

That deal kicks in this season, and runs through 2020.

As for the rest of the leadership group, four players will serve as alternate captains this season: Patrik Elias, Travis Zajac, Mike Cammalleri, and Adam Henrique.

Elias and Zajac both wore an “A” in New Jersey last year, while Cammalleri and Henrique are first-timers.