Author: Cam Tucker

Shero confident Devils can re-sign Larsson, perhaps before arbitration date

The New Jersey Devils and defenseman Adam Larsson are nearing an arbitration date, but the club’s general manager Ray Shero seems to believe a deal could perhaps be completed before then, according to, via

As per, Larsson’s arbitration hearing is July 29. In his fourth season with the Devils, the 22-year-old blue liner scored three goals and had 24 points — both career highs — in 64 games.

“I think we’ll get a deal done,” said Shero.

“We have time before the arbitration date certainly and we’ll see where that leads us, but the goal with [Eric] Gelinas was to try to agree to a deal we’re both happy with and it’s the same thing with Larsson. I had a conversation with [agent] J.P. Barry again [Thursday] and I hope within the next few days to have an idea where we’re going. We’ve talked about a lot of different things.”

Larsson, taken fourth overall in the 2011 NHL Draft and now a restricted free agent, was one of two Devils’ players to originally elect for salary arbitration.

The Devils avoided arbitration with defenseman Eric Gelinas earlier this week by re-signing him to a two-year contract extension worth $3.15 million.

According to Tom Gulitti for The Record, the Devils also re-signed defenseman Seth Helgeson to a two-year contract.

Blackhawks, Kruger ‘still talking’ as two sides try to negotiate new deal


The summer days continue to tick by and still no deal for Chicago Blackhawks center Marcus Kruger, however general manager Stan Bowman told ESPN Chicago the two sides are “still talking.”

From ESPN Chicago:

Bowman said he would like to come to terms with Kruger before training camp in September.

“I think with all our players, you want to have them signed before camp,” Bowman said. “I think it’s always ideal to have your guys with as much preparation as possible. We’re working towards that and ultimately we’ll see how the timing works out.”

According to General Fanager, the Blackhawks have $231,540 in cap space.

Kruger, 25, scored seven goals and 17 points last regular season.

He also came with a cap hit of 1.325 million over the last two seasons, however it’s been widely reported his goal is to sign a long-term contract this summer, and he was willing to wait for Chicago to clear up some of its salary cap issues.

It’s a ‘big step’ from junior to NHL, but Gretzky believes McDavid can handle it


The anticipation for Connor McDavid’s first training camp with the Edmonton Oilers continues to grow, with The Great One, Wayne Gretzky, weighing in on the potential Next One and his upcoming transition from junior hockey to the NHL.

Big things are expected of McDavid, taken first overall in last month’s NHL Draft much to the surprise of no one after he completely dominated the Ontario Hockey League, especially this past season despite a broken hand suffered in a fight.

“Going right from junior to the NHL? That’s a big step for Connor. But he’s the one guy who can handle it,” Gretzky told the Edmonton Journal.

“He’ll be fine. With his speed and his shot and his creativity and his hockey knowledge, that’s as good as anybody.”

This isn’t the first time Gretzky has raved about McDavid.

Of course, this latest chapter comes shortly after McDavid lit up a recent Oilers scrimmage at prospect orientation camp, scoring five goals — and making it look easy, too.

Video: Canucks prospects put through the paces of blindfolded dodgeball


Dodgeball can be crazy enough at times. Try playing it blindfolded.

That was the task for Vancouver Canucks prospects at the club’s recent development camp, as young players were partnered up and brought to the tennis courts for a fierce battle of blindfolded dodgeball. It has become an exercise assistant coach Perry Pearn has used for team-building and communication, dating back to Canucks training camp last September.

Bruins’ Neely: ‘I think we can be a playoff team’


It’s been an eventful few months for the Boston Bruins, and that may be an understatement.

After missing the playoffs this past spring, the firing of Peter Chiarelli, the hiring of Don Sweeney as the new general manager and two major trades at the NHL Draft that saw Dougie Hamilton sent to Calgary and Milan Lucic to L.A., Bruins’ president Cam Neely apparently sees his team as one that could potentially make the post-season in 2016.

“There’s lots of parity in the East,” Neely told the Boston Herald. “It’s going to be tight, it’s going to be a challenge. I think we can be a playoff team. I don’t want to sound like that’s our only goal, just to be a playoff team. That’s not a very high goal. We’re past that.

“But I want to see us improve certainly from where we were last year. I think if guys can continue to improve — (David) Pastrnak, (Brett) Connolly, (Ryan) Spooner — I don’t see why we can’t have a very good year this year.”

Two years after appearing in the Stanley Cup Final — which was two years after Boston won the championship in 2011 — the Bruins missed out on the 2015 playoffs by two points while finishing 23rd in the league in scoring.

Their failure to qualify for the playoffs ushered in change, particularly in the front office. However, the club’s moves at the draft and in the days after brought instant and heavy criticism.

Based on Sweeney’s comments Friday, the Bruins could still go after available free agents prior to the start of the season.

“There are still players out there that may fit,” said Sweeney, as per “You have conversations with agents about possibilities. I think we’re comfortable with where we are in creating internal competition, but I’m not going to stop sort of asking in areas that we can continue to look at.”