Cam Tucker

CALGARY, AB - OCTOBER 7: Johnny Gaudreau #13 of the Calgary Flames skates against the Vancouver Canucks in the season opener at Scotiabank Saddledome on October 7, 2015 in Calgary, Alberta, Canada. (Photo by Derek Leung/Getty Images)
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Flames moving ‘Heaven and Earth’ to sign Gaudreau, says Treliving


The Calgary Flames begin the regular season on Wednesday against the rival Edmonton Oilers. It will be Connor McDavid‘s first regular season game as the Oilers captain.

Flames fans won’t be concerned with that. The biggest issue facing Calgary’s NHL team right now is whether or not their talented forward Johnny Gaudreau will be in the lineup.

After playing for Team North America at the World Cup, the 23-year-old Gaudreau still remains unsigned, a restricted free agent, coming off a 30-goal, 78-point season.

“We all know that Johnny is a tremendous player,” said Flames GM Brad Treliving, as per the Calgary Sun. “He’s a significant part of our team, a significant part of our community. We are moving Heaven and Earth to try and get him done. The business side of our sport is, sometimes, not the fun side and we’re going through that right now.

“I have every confidence that we are going to get a contract that works for Johnny, that works for us. Our hope, and what we’re striving for, is get that done so that not only Johnny will be back here with us, but with us on Wednesday.”

Gaudreau’s agent, Lewis Gross, has already said his client has no intentions to ask for a trade out of Calgary.

It was reported early in September, before the World Cup began, that Gaudreau’s camp was asking for something in the range of $8 million annually, and that the two sides were about $1.5 million apart.

Canucks loss is Blackhawks gain: Sounds like Forsling may be staying in Chicago

CHICAGO, IL - OCTOBER 04: Artem Anisimov #15 of the Chicago Blackhawks celebrates his third period goal with teammate Gustav Forsling #42 during a preseason game at the United Center on October 4, 2016 in Chicago, Illinois. The Blackhawks defeated the Red Wings 6-1. (Photo by Jonathan Daniel/Getty Images)
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The phrase “asset management” has become all too familiar in Vancouver. It’s usually used as criticism towards Canucks management, led by GM Jim Benning.

In his first draft as Canucks GM, Benning made a shrewd move by selecting Forsling, a young, skilled defenseman from Sweden, in the fifth round in 2014. Seven months later, Benning moved Forsling to the Chicago Blackhawks for right-shooting defenseman Adam Clendening.

Sixth months later, Clendening was moved to Pittsburgh as part of the deal to bring in Brandon Sutter to Vancouver.

So, for the Canucks, a team that needed depth on defense and young players to begin to compete for NHL jobs: No Clendening. No Forsling.

Vancouver’s loss is Chicago’s gain. By all accounts, the 20-year-old Forsling has been very impressive at Blackhawks training camp and continues to make a case to be on the roster.

From the Chicago Sun-Times:

The problem is, there’s nowhere for him to play.

By signing Brian Campbell, Michal Kempny and Michal Rozsival to one-year contracts this summer, general manager Stan Bowman solidified his blue line, turning a weak spot into a strength. But with those three guys, plus veterans Keith, Niklas Hjalmarsson, Brent Seabrook and Trevor van Riemsdyk, the Hawks already have seven defensemen who aren’t going anywhere.

The Blackhawks wrap up their pre-season schedule Saturday against the St. Louis Blues.

Red Wings’ Ben Street ‘is going to be just fine’ after skate cut to the neck

WASHINGTON, DC - OCTOBER 03: Ben Street #38 of the Calgary Flames skates against the Washington Capitals at the Verizon Center on October 3, 2013 in Washington, DC. The Capitals defeated the Flames 5-4 in the shootout.  (Photo by Bruce Bennett/Getty Images)
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Detroit Red Wings coach Jeff Blashill on Saturday provided an update on forward Ben Street, telling the Detroit Free Press that Street “is going to be just fine” after suffering a cut to his neck from a skate blade during Friday’s exhibition game against the Toronto Maple Leafs.

From the Toronto Star:

Street was involved in a collision along the boards in the second period and the skate of Leaf Justin Holl made contact near his throat. He immediately grabbed his neck with his gloved hand and left the ice, under his own power, before being taken to a local hospital.

“Ben was cut in the neck,” Blashill told the Detroit Free Press. “They explored the wound. There was no major damages. He was taken to hospital last night to make sure. He was released from the hospital last night and he is on his way home.

“He had unreal composure. He had his hand on his neck. I looked up and saw the replay and that’s when I really got scared. I was hoping everything was OK. But we got word pretty quick that it looked like it was going to be just fine.”

The Red Wings signed Street, 29, to a one-year contract on July 1, as per

Street has played 29 NHL games in his career, spending time with the Calgary Flames and Colorado Avalanche organizations.

Chiarelli: ‘I could see there wasn’t a fit’ for Yakupov in Edmonton

LOS ANGELES, CA - FEBRUARY 25:  Nail Yakupov #10 of the Edmonton Oilers reacts after a missed chance to score during the third period of a 2-1 loss to the Los Angeles Kings at Staples Center on February 25, 2016 in Los Angeles, California.  (Photo by Harry How/Getty Images)
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The reaction continues from Friday’s big trade that sent former first overall pick Nail Yakupov from the Edmonton Oilers to the St. Louis Blues.

On Friday, following the deal, Yakupov had his say: “I think it’s awesome, I don’t know what winning is.”


On Saturday, Oilers general manager Peter Chiarelli offered his thoughts on why Yakupov was no longer a fit in Edmonton, which has traded two of its former first overall picks — Yakupov and, in June, Taylor Hall — in just a few months.

“I don’t know if it’s fair for me to assess why it didn’t work out just by looking at one year,” said Chiarelli, as per video from the Oilers’ Twitter account.

“But I could see there wasn’t a fit. Again … he’s a young player who has skill and talent. From what I saw the year before to what I saw this past year, I thought his game diluted. His strengths — I didn’t think (he was) playing to his strengths. There are other areas of his game that can improve and need to improve.”

Last season, Yakupov, who spent some time on a line with Connor McDavid, played in 60 games for the Oilers, scoring only eight goals and 23 points. But his struggles in Edmonton began long before last season.

“By the time we had arrived here, the new coaching staff and stuff, it was infected already. He had a lot of the past baggage that he was carrying with him,” said head coach Todd McLellan, as per the Edmonton Journal.

“We tried to get him going and it worked for awhile with Connor, and then both their injuries derailed that. People wonder, well, why didn’t you put him back there? Because we didn’t. And Ebs created a bond with Connor that we thought was going to be better. It’s as simple as that.”

Setoguchi, on a PTO with the Kings, gets a chance to play with Kopitar

LOS ANGELES, CA - SEPTEMBER 28:  Devin Setoguchi #10 of the Los Angeles Kings during a preseason game against the Anaheim Ducks at Staples Center on September 28, 2016 in Los Angeles, California.  (Photo by Harry How/Getty Images)
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The L.A. Kings have one more pre-season game left on their schedule. It goes tonight against the Colorado Avalanche.

And veteran forward Devin Setoguchi, battling for a roster spot on a professional tryout with the Kings, will be put into prime position to make perhaps one last impression on the coaching staff.

According to reports, he will begin the game on the wing on a line with Anze Kopitar, which could provide an opportunity for him to strut his offensive capabilities in this pivotal audition.

“If there’d be any impact for Devon tonight that would be getting to play with Kopitar. Hopefully that’s good for him,” said coach Darryl Sutter, as per LA Kings Insider.

The Kings have 15 forwards listed on their NHL roster, as per General Fanager, but there may be spots up for grabs — at least in the interim — with Marian Gaborik on the injured list, and Tanner Pearson serving a suspension that runs through the first two games of the regular season.

Setoguchi, now 29 years old, played last season in Switzerland, after 471 NHL games for four teams. He has also battled alcoholism off the ice — a battle he detailed for The Hockey News last month.

From the Hockey News:

Setoguchi felt he rediscovered his game in Davos, putting up 11 goals and 24 points in 30 games. Returning to Switzerland, or elsewhere in Europe, would be fine if that’s how things play out, both he and his wife said, but they’re both hopeful for a return to the NHL. “I’ve helped myself, and every day I try to help myself be a better person,” said Setoguchi, now 29. “I feel like I’m a pretty good gauge for young kids as to how quick it can hit and how fast it can stop. I wouldn’t say a mentor, but I think I’d be good to have around an AHL team for a bit. Hopefully someone can see that I’ve turned it around. I can definitely help.