Toews honored to be compared to Crosby


When it comes to individual accomplishments, there’s no question that Sidney Crosby has achieved more than Jonathan Toews, but Toews is the one that’s captained his team to a pair of Stanley Cup championships and has won the Conn Smythe Trophy.

NBC analyst Jeremy Roenick said in May that while Crosby is the better player, he would sooner build a team around Toews. The fact that the comparisons are being made was brought up to Toews during a FAN 590 interview and he was asked what he thinks of them.

“I think you’ve got to take it with a grain of salt,” Toews said. “I mean, I think there’s many situations where our team success in Chicago could hit a rough patch and myself and Kane or whoever else normally gets the credit for that could take most of the responsibility. So it goes one of two ways.

“I think it’s an honor to hear something like that, but like I said, I still feel every year I’ve got a lot to prove and as a team we want to win more than ever, having had that experience twice already.”

As Toews suggested, those conversations will likely swayed by how Chicago and Pittsburgh do going forward. Both teams are great on paper and while the Blackhawks have excelled while the Penguins have struggled to live up to expectations, there’s no guarantee that those trends will persist going forward.

(h/t CSN Chicago)

Habs claim Byron off waivers from Flames

Paul Byron
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Montreal added some forward depth on Tuesday, acquiring diminutive forward Paul Byron off waivers from Calgary.

Byron, 26, is a veteran of nearly 150 career NHL games, most coming with the Flames. Despite fairly solid production over the last two years — 40 points in 104 games — he was exposed to waivers on Monday, along with fellow forward Mason Raymond.

(Calgary does have a logjam of players at forward, hence parting ways with Byron and Raymond.)

Byron can play both wing and center but, at 5-foot-7, 153 pounds, is one of the most undersized skaters in the league. Thankfully for him, Montreal has an affinity for undersized forwards, with the likes of Brendan Gallagher (5-foot-9, 184 pounds) and David Desharnais (5-foot-7, 174 pounds) already on the active roster.

Byron could also fill Zack Kassian‘s roster spot. Kassian is currently suspended without pay while undergoing Stage 2 of the NHL’s Substance Abuse program.

Isles claim goalie Berube off waivers

Evgeny Kuznetsov, Jaroslav Halak
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The New York Islanders have claimed goalie Jean-Francois Berube off waivers from the Los Angeles Kings, the club announced today.

Berube won the Calder Cup last season with AHL Manchester, but the 24-year-old has yet to appear in an NHL game.

That the Isles claimed Berube could be evidence that Jaroslav Halak will not be ready to start the season after all.

If that’s the case, Berube would back up Thomas Greiss, with Stephon Williams expected to go to the AHL.

The Isles open their regular season Friday at home versus the Blackhawks, then play the next day in Chicago.