Author: Jason Brough

Sergei Kalinin

Devils sign Russian forward Kalinin


The New Jersey Devils have signed forward Sergei Kalinin to an entry-level contract, the club announced today.

From the press release:

Kalinin, 24, spent the previous five seasons with Avangard Omsk (KHL). This past year, he set career highs across the board with 12 goals, 13 assists, 25 points, 49 penalty minutes and 58 games played, while serving as the club’s captain. The 6-3, 190-lb. forward has scored 31 goals and 38 assists for 69 points and 113 penalty minutes in 213 career KHL games.

It was reported last week that the Devils had offered Kalinin a contract.

The free-agent signing (Kalinin was not drafted by an NHL team) would seem to fit with new GM Ray Shero’s plans to bolster the Devils’ prospects group by means beyond the draft.

“There are only seven picks in the draft and you need to look at different areas to try to add to the competition level or depth, depending on the risk factors involved,” Shero told NJ Advance Media.

Video: NHL’s Stanley Cup promo asks: ‘What’s in a name?’

Colorado Avalanche v Detroit Red Wings

This is the NHL’s 2015 Stanley Cup Final national TV spot, which will debut Wednesday during Game 1.

From the press release:

Narrated by acclaimed actor and hockey fan Liev Schreiber, the spot reminds us that an individual’s name can come to represent much more than just the person. Uttering a name can prompt personal stories, awaken never-forgotten memories and trigger a wide range of emotions – excitement, happiness, passion, pride, inspiration, and even heartbreak.

A few of the other spots from past years:

The Ducks got Kesler for a game like Saturday’s


Yes, the Ducks have lost a Game 7 at home the last two seasons.

And yes, they have another Game 7 at home tomorrow versus the Chicago Blackhawks, with a trip to the Stanley Cup Final on the line.

But for one simple reason, what happened the last two years doesn’t have much predictive value, according to Ducks defenseman Francois Beauchemin.

“The last two years, we were a different team,” Beauchemin said. “We were a younger team. We added some players last summer that have been making the difference all year long for our team. Like I said, it’s not going to be the same Ducks that played Game 7 the last two years.”

Anaheim’s major offseason addition was Ryan Kesler, acquired from Vancouver to give the Ducks the kind of one-two punch at center that the Los Angeles Kings — the team that eliminated Anaheim last year on its way to winning the Stanley Cup — boast with Anze Kopitar and Jeff Carter.

“I think I can fit into this team and be a good No. 2 behind Ryan Getzlaf,” Kesler said in June. ”I’m going to Anaheim to win a championship.”

Adding to the optimism created by the Kesler acquisition, Ducks coach Bruce Boudreau remarked: “I’ve never coached a team in the NHL that’s had a second-line center that you’re going to have with Ryan Kesler.”

And for adding Kesler, as well as all the other moves he made, Ducks GM Bob Murray was named a finalist for NHL GM of the year.

So yeah, quite a bit on the line tomorrow in Anaheim. This is exactly why the Ducks got Kesler, for a game like this. To prove that, this year, things are different.

“Our goal wasn’t to get to the conference final. Our goal was to get to the Stanley Cup Final,” said Beauchemin.

“We have a chance to do that in Game 7 here.”

Related: Kesler gives Ducks the Selke Trophy type that Cup champs usually have