Tag: Andrei Kostitsyn

Sergei Kostitsyn

Sergei Kostitsyn says Preds were “too tough” on his brother and Radulov


After staying silent about the suspensions given to his brother and Alex Radulov, Sergei Kostitsyn has spoken publicly about the incident.

From Puck Daddy’s Dmitry Chesnokov, here’s Kostitsyn discussing the situation to Belorussian news outlet Pressball:

“I think the management was too tough on Alexander and Andrei. The punishment for the incident could have been a monetary fine, [they] went too far with the disqualification in the midst of an important stage of the playoffs. We missed the guys in games three and four of the series.”

In light of this, it’ll be interesting to see what Nashville does with the Kostitsyns. There are those that figure Andrei isn’t worth the headache and the Preds would be wise to walk away.

But what about Sergei?

The 24-year-old has enjoyed the best success of his career in Nashville and finished this season with 43 points and 16:28 average TOI, a personal high (he also led the Preds in scoring in 2010-11.) The Kostitsyn-Erat-Fisher line was arguably Nashville’s best throughout this year.

Now, do keep in mind that Kostitsyn’s comments — while questionable — are hardly grounds for divorce. Players have said far worse about their organizations and managed to stick around. And hey, if worst comes to worst, he can always play the “lost in translation” card.

That said, there’s the added acrimony of the whole “you suspended my brother” thing, especially if Sergei thinks the suspension was too harsh.

Related: An interesting tidbit from the Edmonton Journal’s Jim Matheson.

While some suggest that Alex Radulov’s party-boy antics off the ice will be forgotten at contract time and they’ll gladly let Andrei Kostitsyn walk as an unrestricted free-agent, one source says both guys have torched the bridge in Nashville. They figure Craig Smith can take AK47’s (sic) spot. They’ll trade Radulov’s rights. One interesting sidelight: Kostitsyn’s brother wasn’t out on the town with his brother because Martin Erat, Sergei’s linemate was keeping an eye on him.

Erat: Good linemate, better babysitter.

Turns out Radulov and Kostitsyn may have missed curfew by an hour

Adrian Aucoin, Alexander Radulov

We thought we were done debating Barry Trotz’s decision to sit Alexander Radulov and Andrei Kostitsyn in Games 3 and 4, but the talk isn’t going away now that we’re getting details about just how late they were out before Game 2 in Glendale.

Sports Illustrated’s Michael Farber wrote a solid piece looking into the news surrounding some of Russia (and Belarus’) finest players in the postseason and in it we get the details about Radulov and Kostitsyn’s night on the town in Arizona. Farber finds out it wasn’t quite the all-night bender it’s been made out to be (emphasis mine).

Although one team official learned about 30 minutes before Game 2 that Radulov and Kostitsyn had broken the Predators’ midnight curfew, he did not feel that it was the appropriate time to relay the news to coach Barry Trotz or general manager David Poile. Trotz learned of the indiscretion after his postgame press conference, when a reporter pulled him aside and mentioned that media members had spotted the two players out late the night before. When the Predators returned to the team hotel adjacent to Jobing.com Arena in Glendale, Trotz checked the security logs: Radulov and Kostitsyn indeed had returned around 1 a.m.

Earlier reports had Radulov and Kostitsyn rolling in much later than that and thus thoroughly justifying Trotz’s punishment for Game 3. Breaking team rules regardless of how badly you break curfew requires some kind of punishment. Oddly enough, this story from Farber jives well with Radulov’s assertion he wasn’t out that late.

The debate Predators fans and other hockey folks might get into now is whether missing curfew by an hour requires a two-game suspension.

Related: Did the media tip off the Predators about Radulov and Kostitsyn partying?

PHT List: Rating this year’s trade deadline acquisitions

Antoine Vermette

With just five teams left in the Stanley Cup playoffs — and if New York does the business tonight, that number will drop to four — now’s a good time to look back at the flurry of action on (and leading up to) February’s NHL trade deadline.

Which deals paid off most handsomely? Which didn’t?

The Good

To Phoenix: C Antoine Vermette
To Columbus: 2012 2nd-round pick, 2013 5th-round pick, G Curtis McElhinney (link)

Vermette leads Phoenix in playoff scoring (5G-4A-9PTS — 11th overall) and the Coyotes are in their first ever conference final. This one’s a no-brainer, probably the best deal made.

To Los Angeles: C Jeff Carter
To Columbus: D Jack Johnson, Cond. 1st-round pick (link)

Carter’s numbers hardly jump off the page (1G-3A-4PTS) but Los Angeles’ numbers since acquiring him sure do. Including the playoffs, the Kings are 21-6-3 since the Feb. 23 trade. Oh yeah, they’re also going to their first Western Conference finals since 1993.

To New Jersey: D Marek Zidlicky
To Minnesota: D Kurtis Foster, RW Nick Palmieri, LW Stephane Veilleux, 2012 2nd-round pick, Cond. 2013 3rd-round pick (link)

The Devils gave up plenty to land Zidlicky but, like Carter, you can’t argue with the numbers. New Jersey’s 21-11-2 since getting him; Zidlicky leads all Devils in postseason ice-time (24:39) and has six points in 12 games thus far.

To Philadelphia: D Nicklas Grossmann
To Dallas: 2012 2nd-round pick (link)

The Flyers really liked Grossmann and inked him to a four-year, $14 million deal. His postseason was abbreviated by a concussion but overall, he was solid on the Flyers blueline.

The Average

To Boston: RW Brian Rolston, D Mike Mottau
To New York Islanders: RW Yannick Riendeau, D Marc Cantin (link)

Rolston put up 15 points in 21 regular season games and started the postseason well, scoring a point in each of the first three games. He faded at the end, probably because he’s 39 years old, but considering they gave up nothing to get him and Mottau, the Bruins did okay.

To Chicago: D Johnny Oduya
To Winnipeg: 2013 2nd- and 3rd-round picks (link)

Chicago liked him and he played well, but Oduya didn’t change the ‘Hawks’ fortunes any. They were bounced in the opening round again, and now he’s a UFA that Chicago might not be able to retain.

The Bad

To Philadelphia: D Pavel Kubina
To Tampa Bay: LW Jon Kalinski, 2013 2nd-round pick, Cond. 2013 4th-round pick (link)

The Flyers realized Kubina was too slow to play regularly. He ended up a frequent healthy scratch.

To Detroit: D Kyle Quincey
To Tampa Bay: 2012 1st-round pick, D Sebastien Piche (link)

Quincey’s minutes decreased to the point where he was barely playing 16 per game in the first round. Detroit’s early exit also means the Lightning now get a pretty decent pick.

To Nashville: C Paul Gaustad, 2012 4th-round pick
To Buffalo: 2012 1st-round pick (link)

David Poile — recently named one of the three GM of the year finalists — dealt away a first-rounder for a guy that was often Nashville’s fourth-line center. In the Phoenix series, Gaustad averaged 10:33 per game.

To San Jose: C Dominic Moore, 2012 7th-round pick
To Tampa Bay: 2012 2nd-round pick (link)

To San Jose: C Daniel Winnik, C T.J. Galiardi, 2012 7th-round pick
To Colorado: LW Jamie McGinn (link)

Lumping these in together. Winnik, Galiardi and Moore combined for a measly 12 points in the regular season and one in the playoffs (Galiardi and Moore only dressed for three of the five games.)

Trade we can’t really evaluate yet

To Vancouver: RW Zack Kassian
To Buffalo: C Cody Hodgson (link)

Since this trade wasn’t a prototypical deadline deal — it’s safe to say Vancouver made this one with an eye on the future — it can’t be graded. If you did want to grade it as a trade deadline deal, though, it would be classified as “bad, very very bad” for Vancouver.

The Canucks shipped out an offensively talented player (then proceeded to score eight goals in five games against the Kings) in exchange for Kassian, who was supposed to bring physicality but ended up only playing four of five playoff games (4:51 of ice per) and recording exactly five hits.

Other trades I don’t feel especially compelled to analyze, but feel free to debate them thoroughly in the comments section

To Nashville: RW Andrei Kostitsyn
To Montreal: 2013 2nd-round pick, Cond. 2013 5th-round pick (link)

To Nashville: D Hal Gill, 2013 5th-round pick
To Montreal: C Blake Geoffrion, LW Robert Slaney, 2012 2nd-round pick (link)

To Florida: LW Wojtek Wolski
To New York Rangers: D Mike Vernace, 2013 3rd-round pick (link)

To Vancouver: C Samuel Pahlsson
To Columbus: D Taylor Ellinlgton, Two 2012 4th-round picks (link)

To Ottawa: G Ben Bishop
To St. Louis: 2013 2nd-round pick (link)

Trotz laments Preds’ elimination: “This was a team that had all the depth”

Barry Trotz

To hear Barry Trotz tell it, the story of Nashville’s season went bad, good…then disappointing.

“The first 20 games, we were not a good hockey team,” Trotz told The Tennessean. “We were real young in some areas. We weren’t very detailed; we didn’t know how to win.

“And then we became a real good hockey team. And then, at the appropriate time, the ownership stepped up and added some pieces that we thought would be necessary to go deep into the playoffs.”

And then? For the second straight year, the team was bounced in the second round — this time by an upstart Phoenix club that seemed to out-Predator the Predators.

“We couldn’t solve the riddle of Mike Smith and the Coyotes’ defense,” Trotz explained. “In the first couple of games, it was our defense, or lack of, that prevented us from winning. Stealing Game 1 [4-3 in overtime] the way they did really gave them a lot of confidence.”

Trotz didn’t put much credence in the idea that suspensions to Alex Radulov and Andrei Kostitsyn derailed his club, though numbers suggest they played a part. The Preds only managed to score three goals over the final three games of the series (after scoring six in the first two) — a stretch that coincided with Radulov and Kostitsyn being banished for Games 3 and 4.

By the time Game 5 rolled around, the two were out of synch, combining for just three shots on goal in the elimination contest.

That said, Trotz believed his team had enough depth not just to overcome the Radulov/Kostitsyn fiasco, but also to beat the Coyotes and make a deep playoff run.

“This was a team that had all the depth,” Trotz said. “Whereas in the past we had some talented teams, but we didn’t quite have the depth at certain areas or enough experience in certain areas.

“This team had pretty good balance all the way through.”

PHT Extra: Future’s bright for Phoenix, less so for Nashville

Coyotes Predators 2

In the latest episode of PHT Extra, Mike Halford and Jason Brough — aka “The Balki and Cousin Larry of hockey blogging” — discuss the aftermath of the recently completed Phoenix-Nashville series.

For the Coyotes, good times are ahead. The team will participate in the first Western Conference finals in franchise history and a new ownership group — led by former Sharks CEO Greg Jamison — has a purchase agreement for the club.

For the Predators…yeah, not so much. The team was bounced in Round 2 for the second consecutive year in a hailstorm of controversy stemming from the Alex Radulov/Andrei Kostitsyn curfew violation. Now there are major questions about the future of Ryan Suter and Shea Weber.

So let’s go to the video, shall we?

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Be sure to check back tomorrow, when PHT Extra takes a look at the Eastern Conference picture.