Author: Jason Brough

Russia Kovalchuk Hockey

Kovalchuk: ‘We’ll see’ about NHL return


Ilya Kovalchuk isn’t ruling out a return to the NHL.

“I have two more years on my contract (with SKA Saint Petersburg of the KHL),” Kovalchuk told yesterday. “Then, we’ll see.”

Kovalchuk, who turned 32 in April, hasn’t played in the NHL since his shock “retirement” in July of 2013. He may not be eligible to return to the NHL until he’s 35.

The former Thrashers and Devils star had 25 goals and 30 assists in 54 regular-season games this season, then helped his team to a KHL championship in the playoffs.

Report: Bettman ordered to testify in concussions lawsuit

New York Rangers v Phoenix Coyotes


NHL Commissioner Gary Bettman has been ordered by a U.S. federal court judge to offer testimony in the concussions lawsuit filed by 60 former players against the league.

TSN has learned that late Tuesday, a judge ordered Bettman to testify in July on matters related to the high-stakes litigation.

The lawyers for the players have taken issue with a number of things that Bettman has said in the past regarding brain injuries in hockey, the insinuation being that he hasn’t taken the issue as seriously as he should have. They’ll also no doubt question how much scientific information the league did or did not pass on to the players.

Related: Ask a Lawyer: Do the players suing the NHL over concussions have a case?

Prospective Seattle NHL owner has an arena Plan B

Storm Saviors Basketball

Don’t be surprised if we learn of yet another alternative arena site in the Seattle area.

Prospective NHL owner Victor Coleman, who’s been working with investor Chris Hansen to get an arena built in Seattle’s SoDo neighborhood, says he has a Plan B.

“My priority is to figure out a way to make a deal on the SoDo site,” Coleman told Puget Sound Business Journal. “If for some reason that doesn’t happen, it is not going to detract us from looking at an alternative site that we have looked at and will continue to pursue if the [SoDo] site is not available…”

Coleman declined to say where his alternative site was located.

We learned late last month of a competing plan to build an arena in the Seattle suburb of Tukwila. That one is headed up by Ray Bartoszek, and it’s clearly put the pressure on Seattle mayor Ed Murray to do whatever needs to be done to move the SoDo project along.

Wherever’s Coleman’s alternative site is located, it doesn’t sound like he’s interested in a suburban one.

“They should look at Glendale and elsewhere,” Coleman told King 5, adding he believes the NHL “100 percent…wants to be in downtown Seattle.”

(Video) PHT Extra: In praise of Braden Holtby

New York Rangers v Washington Capitals - Game Three

Before we get to the video, did you know that Braden Holtby’s career save percentage in the playoffs is .936?

And did you know that, among all active goalies with at least 10 postseason appearances, only Mike Smith (.945) has a higher career save percentage than Holtby’s?

It’s true.

Now, the video:

Prust apologizes for all the stuff he said about referee Watson

Brandon Prust, Ben Bishop

Brandon Prust is sorry for what he said about referee Brad Watson.

The Montreal Canadiens forward offered his apology today, telling reporters he wished he could take back what he said, and that what he said was due to emotion. 

What he said, in case you somehow missed it, followed Sunday’s 6-2 loss to Tampa Bay, during which Prust was given two minutes for roughing, then, after arguing with Watson, an extra two minutes for unsportsmanlike conduct.

“I thought the original call was kind of soft and I let [Watson] know on the way to the penalty box,” Prust said. “He kept provoking me. He came to the box and called me every name in the book. He called me a piece of you know what, a (expletive), coward, said he’d drive me right out of this building. I kept going, ‘Yeah, OK, yeah OK, yeah OK.’ He kept on me, he kept on me. I kept saying, ‘Yeah, OK.’ I wasn’t looking at him. He teed me up.

“That’s the ref he is. He tries to play God. He tries to control the game and he did that tonight.”

Prust expects to get a call from the NHL about his remarks. He will likely be fined.

Prust’s mea culpa may also have been spurred by his coach, Michel Therrien.

“I’m old school with those things,” Therrien said yesterday, per the Canadian Press. “I’m a true believer that what’s in the dressing room should stay in the dressing room, what’s on the ice and comments should stay on the ice. And we’ll take care of that internally.”