Cam Janssen #25 of the New Jersey Devils skates against the New York Islanders at the Prudential Center on April 3, 2012 in Newark, New Jersey. The Devils defeated the Islanders 3-1.
(April 2, 2012 - Source: Bruce Bennett/Getty Images North America)

Roundup: Sharks, Devils, and Canadiens ink players to two-way deals, Stars buyout Godard

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Here’s a list of minor contracts to chew on:

— The San Jose Sharks have given Matt Irwin a two-way deal worth $650,000, according to Renaud Lavoie. Irwin had 11 goals and 42 points in 71 AHL contests in 2011-12. He’s 24 years old and hasn’t made his NHL debut yet.

Renaud Lavoie also reported that the Montreal Canadiens inked Brendon Nash to a two-way deal worth $575,000 and Petteri Nokelainen to a one-way, $575,000 contract. Nash has no points in two career NHL games.

Nokelainen has 20 goals and 21 assists in 245 career NHL contests. He had six points in 51 games in the 2011-12 campaign.

— The New Jersey Devils have signed Cam Janssen to a two-way deal worth $575,000 at the NHL level, according to The Bergen Record. He had an assist and 75 penalty minutes in 48 regular season contests, but he didn’t log a single minute of ice time in the playoffs.

— Finally, Mike Heika reported that the Dallas Stars have bought out Eric Godard. His two-year deal would have become one-way in 2012-13 with a salary of $700,000, but he will instead cost the Stars $231,000 in 2012-13 and 2013-14. Godard had a goal and no assists in 48 games with the AHL Texas Stars last season.

Turns out Ference intentionally flipped off the Montreal crowd after all

Ference Finger
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In Apr. 2011, the Bruins and Canadiens played another in the long history of bitter rivalry games — Game 4 of the Eastern Conference quarterfinals, to be exact.

It was a heated affair, like most others, but the big difference this time was a particular goalscoring celebration from B’s defenseman Andrew Ference:

Unsurprisingly, the move set off a flurry of criticisms towards Ference, who responded to the allegations by claiming the act was “an equipment malfunction” and an “unintentional bird.”

Today, though, the keen eye of Joe Haggerty at CSNNE.com found Ference’s blog — The Good Man Project — and his first post, which is about responsibility and accountability:

I am guilty myself of trying to blame a middle-fingered celebration after a goal in Montreal on a glove malfunction. In round one of the playoffs between two of the fiercest rivals in our sport, I scored a tying goal in the enemy’s building, only to have my fist pump turn into a sign language that crosses all borders.

Facing the media and a possible suspension after the fact proved to be too much for my self-accountability. Self-preservation is a powerful thing… it is easier to place blame elsewhere and overlook your own responsibilities.

And so ends the legacy of the unintentional bird which, I have to say, never caught on like I thought it would. I guess it’s hard coming up with a meaningful catchphrase in today’s society, especially with golden material like “taking my talents to South Beach,” and “that’s a clown question, bro.”

Report: Montreal elects to file for arbitration with Carey Price

Montreal Canadiens v St. Louis Blues
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Not that there was really much cause for concern before, but it looks like one way or another, Carey Price will be wearing a Montreal Canadiens’ uniform in 2012-13. According to a recent report from RDS’ Renaud Lavoie, Montreal has filed for salary arbitration with Price.

Price was scheduled to become a restricted free agent this summer, but if this report is true, then no NHL team will be allowed to present Price with an offer sheet. At the same time, the Montreal Canadiens can continue to negotiate with Price in the hopes of avoiding arbitration altogether.

Lavoie said that this shouldn’t be taken as a sign that the contract talks between Montreal and Price aren’t going well. Instead, this is likely Montreal simply playing it safe. After all, Price is a vital part of their long-term plans and they don’t want to give opposing teams any opportunity to wrestle him away.

Price is coming off a two-year/$5.5 million contract and he’ll probably end up with a substantial raise.

Montreal’s Pacioretty awarded Bill Masterton Memorial Trophy

Max Pacioretty
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Montreal Canadiens forward Max Pacioretty has won the 2012 Bill Masterton Memorial Trophy, awarded annually to the NHL player who “best exemplifies the qualities of perseverance, sportsmanship, and dedication to hockey.”

Pacioretty staged a heroic comeback after suffering a fractured vertebrae and a severe concussion on a Zdeno Chara hit in Mar. 2011. After missing the remainder of the regular season and playoffs, Pacioretty came back with aplomb in 2011-12, setting career highs in goals (33), assists (32), points (65), game-winning goals (five) and shots on goal (286).

The Connecticut native also put himself in the history books by becoming the first American-born player to score 30 goals for the Canadiens.

Pacioretty edged out Ottawa’s Daniel Alfredsson and Toronto’s Joffrey Lupul for the award.

Past Masterton Winners

2011   Ian Laperriere (Philadelphia)
2010   Jose Theodore (Washington)
2009   Steve Sullivan (Nashville)
2008   Jason Blake (Toronto)
2007   Phil Kessel (Boston)
2006   Teemu Selanne (Anaheim)

Montreal isn’t interested in dealing P.K. Subban

Eric Staal, P.K. Subban
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You’re going to find this one hard to believe, but the Montreal Canadiens apparently have no designs on trading P.K. Subban.

So reports Arthur Staple of New York Newsday who sniffed around at possible offseason trades for Garth Snow and the Islanders and finds out Montreal isn’t looking to move their top young defenseman.

A restricted free agent such as the Canadiens’ P.K. Subban would have gotten Snow to strongly consider dealing the fourth overall pick, but new Montreal GM Marc Bergevin isn’t moving Subban, according to those who’ve spoken with him.

It’s probably very tempting to Bergevin to have back-to-back picks in the top five of the draft, but giving up a 23-year-old defenseman working into his prime is the sort of move that gets you run out of town. After seeing Montreal practically give away Ryan McDonagh to the Rangers a couple years ago, moving the very popular Subban is an instant no-go.