After an impressive rookie season, Columbus’ Dalton Prout is going to have to wait to show what he’s made of this season.
The Blue Jackets announced Prout would miss the start of preseason after undergoing abdominal surgery. GM Jarmo Kekalainen cleared up what was going on with the 23-year-old defenseman.
“Dalton has been experiencing some soreness for a number of weeks and after initial tests indicated a muscle strain, we discovered this week that there was actually a small tear and that surgery would be his best option,” said Kekalainen. “They typical recovery time for an injury like this is six weeks, so our hope is he will be ready by the start of the regular season.”
That six week timeline times out to put him back in action in late September, just in time for the start of the regular season.
The question for Prout is how this affects his ability to compete for a starting job. With four spots likely spoken for (Jack Johnson, James Wisniewski, Fedor Tyutin, and Nikita Nikitin) he’ll be up against 2012 first-round pick Ryan Murray and Tim Erixon for the final two spots.
The Nashville Predators want to “keep the red out” of Bridgestone Arena. With the Detroit Red Wings playing in the Eastern Conference, that means they want to keep the Chicago Blackhawks’ red out of their house as Scott Powers of ESPNChicago.com shares.
Predators Chief Operating Officer Sean Henry tells Section303.com that if Chicago fans want to get a ticket to see their team in Nashville, they’d better know someone or be ready to buy a season ticket plan in Nashville.
“The best way to buy a Blackhawk ticket is to have a season ticket, a half season ticket or a 15-game plan,” Henry said. “But we also realize that we’re still going to have to sell 3,000-4,000 single tickets for that game. What it’s going to do by forcing another game is we’ll almost direct it toward people that live in the general area, for the most part. And (for the pre-sale) only those in the zip codes that we unlock can buy the Blackhawk game and a second game.”
A plan like this is similar to what the Washington Capitals have done in the past to keep Pittsburgh Penguins fans out of Verizon Center. As you might imagine, it’s being met just as well by Chicago fans as it was by Pittsburgh fans.
It’s not all bad though as Predators season ticket holders who might be tempted to sell their tickets to a Chicago fan can donate their ticket to a member of the military instead.
For what it’s worth, Chicago visits Nashville three times this season: November 16, December 17, and April 12.
Throughout the month of August, PHT will be dedicating a day to all 30 NHL clubs. Today’s team? The defending Stanley Cup champion Chicago Blackhawks.
Ho-hum, it was just another Stanley Cup-winning season for the still young and still very talented Blackhawks. Any and all questions they had going into last season were answered quickly. Could Corey Crawford lead the way in net? He sure did. Can Patrick Kane focus himself and play the way he’s capable? You bet he did. Will their defense rebound and play the way the way they’re supposed do? Definitely.
So what do they do for an encore? Probably get a lot of the same questions asked of them to be stretched over an 82-game season and playoffs. Anyone coming with doubts better be prepared to get served with a heap of answers.
Just like in 2010 when they won the Cup, the Blackhawks did some housecleaning with the roster. Forward Viktor Stalberg (Nashville) and backup goalie Ray Emery (Philadelphia) departed via free agency. Forwards Dave Bolland, Michael Frolik, and Daniel Carcillo were all sent out via trade for draft picks.
Filling their spots will mostly be guys from within the organization. Sure they brought back an old face in Nikolai Khabibulin to backup Crawford and added defensemen Mike Kostka and Theo Peckham for depth, but you might be better served studying the AHL Rockford roster from last season to see who might be on the way this year.
If nothing else, GM Stan Bowman has the way to do things down to a science and even that amount of roster turnover won’t be too stunning. Besides, coach Joel Quenneville is there to keep things in order when it all comes down to it. Life is good in the Windy City these days.
Introducing: PHT’s ‘Team of the Day’ summer series
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.
Fans in Washington might want to get geeked up for what could be a big season from defenseman Mike Green. Anything that makes us think of the Caps’ salad days from 2009 has to be a good thing. (CSNWashington.com)
Jonathan Toews says it’s a gold medal or bust for Canada at the Olympics in Sochi. It’s also like that every four years for Canada so… Yeah. (CSNChicago.com)
Former Devils majority owner turned minority partner Jeff Vanderbeek had himself a day filled with mixed emotions watching a pair of new guys buy him out of deep trouble. (Fire & Ice)
Meanwhile, the Devils sale is another feather in the cap for NHL Commissioner Gary Bettman says David Shoalts. (The Globe And Mail)
Ottawa restricted free agent Jared Cowen is apparently close to getting paid. Hey, that Alfie money had to go to someone, right? (Ottawa Sun)
If you thought Chicago fans were going to handle the Nashville Predators’ new ticket policy meant to keep them out well, you’re forgetting how fans operate. (The Tennessean)
Jason Pominville hasn’t been a member of the Minnesota Wild for very long, but the team wants to change that.
Michael Russo of The Star Tribune reports Wild GM Chuck Fletcher has reached out to Pominville to discuss a contract extension. Russo says Fletcher has reached out with just an initial discussion with the 30-year-old right wing but the team would like to keep him in the fold beyond this season.
After how much the Wild gave up to get him at the deadline this past season, keeping him for more than a season would seem logical. The catch here is how much money Pominville would be asking for.
The Wild have a handful of long-term contracts eating up cap space beyond this season. Mikko Koivu, Zach Parise, and Ryan Suter all have deals that stretch at least beyond 2017-2018. Suter and Parise, of course, signed matching 13-year contracts last summer.
Fletcher wants to keep Pominville in with that mix but not if it’ll cost a ton of money. With the cap likely going up after the upcoming season, Pominville could put the Wild in a spot where they have to pay up big for him or find a way to ship him out before losing him for nothing next summer.