Author: James O'Brien

Boston Bruins v Colorado Avalanche

Seidenberg would waive trade clause if Bruins asked

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Dennis Seidenberg has a no-trade clause in his contract, but if the Boston Bruins want to trade him, he won’t stand in their way.

The German blueliner told CSNNE.com that much on Thursday.

“People have mentioned those rumors to me, but all I can do at the end of the day is play hockey and work hard. That’s what makes you strong,” Seidenberg said. “If they feel like they want to move me, then there’s nothing I can do. Even if I have a no-trade clause, I don’t want to be here if they don’t want me.

“But my job is to play with full effort on the ice, and hopefully that’s enough for them to want to keep me. We’ll see.”

The veteran defenseman presents an interesting case if the Bruins decide to aggressively shop him.

From traditional standpoints, he has some serious selling points. He logs the second highest ice time per game (21:57) among Bruins defensemen behind Zdeno Chara, with 2:34 of that average coming on the penalty kill. The experience is there, and at 32, he’s either in his prime or just past it.

On the other hand, his possession stats argue that he’s not quite as effective as his reputation might suggest. More than a few people believe that he has been overexposed at times when he’s been on a top pairing with Chara.

Really, the biggest factor might be asking price, though.

Seidenberg’s current contract carries a $4 million cap hit and runs through the 2017-18 season. Much like his perceived value, some will look at that as a positive thing (he wouldn’t be a rental) while others would see him as a risk.

The Bruins’ cap situation is tight, and their situation is tense (if not desperate), so GM Peter Chiarelli has to be pleased that he has the option to move Seidenberg, if nothing else.

Isles place Grabovski on IR, recall Mouillierat

New York Islanders v Philadelphia Flyers
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Apparently the upper-body injury Mikhail Grabovski suffered thanks to a hit by Nashville Predators forward Eric Nystrom is fairly serious, as the New York Islanders placed him on IR today.

Here’s video of the hit from Thursday’s impressive Islanders win:

Grabovski, 31, has already dealt with injury issues during his first campaign with the Islanders, so this setback hurts that much more. He’s generated nine goals and 19 points in 51 games, and while that output is disappointing, Grabovski has shown flashes of the player the team was expecting when they handed him a $20 million deal.

The team recalled Kael Mouillierat on an emergency basis to make up for the loss.

Report: Panthers close in on Bergenheim trade

Nashville Predators v Florida Panthers
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Sean Bergenheim has practically been collecting dust as a healthy scratch lately, but it sounds like the Florida Panthers might be close to finding him a new home.

In the latest edition of TSN’s Insider Trading, Pierre LeBrun and Darren Dreger provided some interesting details, including the strong possibility that he may be moved by Monday. Let’s run them down really quick:

  • The Winnipeg Jets, Vancouver Canucks and to some extent the Montreal Canadiens rank among those interested.
  • The asking price may very well be a third-round pick, which LeBrun notes is something the Canucks lack in 2015.
  • Winnipeg has some interesting pieces they can float in deals: some depth defenseman as well as the rights to current KHL forward Alex Burmistrov.

Interesting stuff, huh?

Bergenheim, 31, isn’t a household name by any means, obviously. Even so, his possession stats have consistently been strong, something that’s likely valued more than every in an increasingly savvy league. Those numbers argue in favor of his value more than his solid-but-unspectacular point totals, as he generally clocks in at 10-15 goals per season.

He’s an unrestricted free agent after 2014-15, so he’ll also have that added motivation to generate an eye-catching run with a new team. His agent didn’t exactly hold back when asking for a move, either.

March 2 is the trade deadline, yet we may see another noteworthy move well in advance of that.

PHT Morning Skate: Sharks corner market on weird hockey videos

what
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PHT’s Morning Skate takes a look around the world of hockey to see what’s happening and what we’ll be talking about around the NHL world and beyond.

Remember the San Jose Sharks’ Christmas/holiday rap video? Well, this weather report presents another strange-but-great offering:

If they miss the playoffs, can they still keep making videos like these?

Ryan Johansen gets one over on Nick Foligno in this Visa commercial, although his trolling game could use some work. (Kudos on the obnoxious grin, though.)

Editor’s Note: Pro Hockey Talk’s partner FanDuel is hosting an $30,000 Fantasy Hockey league for Friday night’s NHL games. It’s just $2 to join and first prize is $3,000. Starts Friday at 7pm ET. Here’s the FanDuel link.

Mike Milbury says he’d probably coach the Boston Bruins if the offer was on the table. (CSNNE.com)

Adam Proteau says the next step in the advanced stat debate is advancing beyond that debate. (The Hockey News)

Speaking of advanced stats, NHL.com is rolling out its initiative, so here’s an inside look at that. (Puck Daddy)

Ducks’ Boudreau: ‘We have to pull ourselves out of this’

Tampa Bay Lightning v Anaheim Ducks
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The good news is that the Anaheim Ducks still have a nine-point lead in the Pacific Division. It almost seems like the bad news is “everything else.”

If you’ve been following along on PHT, you’re probably aware that the Ducks have been in a slump that might just be a sign of a team that isn’t as good as its record indicates. That much has been explored here and here.

Still, with injuries mounting, the Ducks were thumped by the Tampa Bay Lightning by a score of 4-1 last night, exacerbating worries that the team is waddling badly into the playoffs. Head coach Bruce Boudreau seemingly took a “what doesn’t kill you, makes you stronger” perspective according to this OC Register report.

“I don’t think anybody’s very happy or used to what’s going on,” Boudreau said. “But it’s up to us. We can’t hang our heads. Friggin’ every other team wants to win to. We got to pull ourselves of this.

“When we do, we’ll be a better team for it. We’d certainly like to see it happen sooner than later.”

There’s at least some recognition of the struggles. Ben Lovejoy said “it’s not head-scratching” and that the Ducks are aware that the played poorly. So there’s that.

As with many slumps – particularly ones by teams that were seemingly getting a lot of puck luck until they hit a wall of regression – the question becomes “How much power does this team actually have to turn things around?”

It’s plausible that Frederik Andersen’s excellent work camouflaged a lot of issues for Anaheim before he was injured. Really, Boudreau might have a point that it’s a blessing in disguise to struggle now instead of in April, May or June.

That said, what this slump really might say is that the Ducks need to sacrifice some of their healthy cap space to get better via moves between today and the March 2 trade deadline.

Determining if it’s a matter of will or personnel is where the head-scratching really might take place.