Tag: Colin Fraser

2014 NHL Stanley Cup Final - Media Day

Three-time Stanley Cup champ Colin Fraser signs in Germany


Colin Fraser is headed overseas to play professionally in Germany with the Nurnberg Ice Tigers.

PHT has learned it’s a one-year, €88,000 deal (roughly $98,961 USD).

His one-year, $650,000 contract with the St. Louis Blues was set to expire next month making him an unrestricted free agent.

Fraser spent the 2014-15 season with the Chicago Wolves of the American Hockey League scoring nine goals and 17 points in 59 games. He also earned a one-game call up with St. Louis registering a minus-1 rating and 4:42 of ice time in the Blues’ 4-3 loss to the Anaheim Ducks.

“I feel like my NHL career has seen better days,” Fraser told PHT. “I almost went overseas last year, but decided to try to get back to the NHL via the AHL like when I was young.

“Now being 30, and having small children, I felt like it was the time to go and experience not only European hockey, but the culture and lifestyle too. Hopefully it all works out and I can extend my career a few years longer.”

Fraser has appeared in 359 NHL games with the Chicago Blackhawks, Edmonton Oilers and L.A. Kings scoring 20 goals and 58 points to go along with 290 penalty minutes.

He was member of the Blackhawks when Chicago won the Stanley Cup in 2010, and was a part of the Kings for their Cup wins in 2012 and 2014.

Despite signing in Europe, Fraser has not given up the NHL dream.

“I believe with my resume I could land a good AHL job, but as far as NHL, there is always that hope. After playing only one game last year I decided that now was the time to go to Europe.”

Wolves not happy with Berra’s celebration

Screen Shot 2015-01-17 at 10.18.08 AM

Lake Erie Monsters goaltender Reto Berra made a little history Friday night becoming the 11th goaltender in American Hockey League history to score a goal.

However, the Chicago Wolves, who dropped the game 5-1, weren’t happy with how the goaltender celebrated.

Forward Colin Fraser stepped in to let Berra know as you can see from the video.

“It’s not everyday a goalie scores and congrats to him. Celebrate it by all means. I just didn’t like the fly-by by our bench and rubbing it in,” Fraser told PHT. “It was a tough end to a tough game for us.

“We haven’t been playing well and I was frustrated.”

Chicago coach John Anderson wasn’t happy with the celebration either.

“I think it’s a wonderful play by him. I just didn’t think that the way he celebrated was necessary,” Anderson told Brian Sandalow of the Chicago Sun-Times. “I think their guys would’ve come down (to him). They were happy for him. (Heck) of a play. Good for him.

“To do that and jump up and down… again it’s a wonderful thing, but come on. You’re in the other team’s building. You can’t show them up like that.”

Blues activate Schwartz, reassign Fraser

St. Louis Blues v Toronto Maple Leafs

The St. Louis Blues have activated forward Jaden Schwartz off injured reserve and assigned Colin Fraser to the Chicago Wolves of the American Hockey League.

Schwartz will make his return to the Blues lineup tonight when St. Louis visits San Jose.

The 22-year-old suffered a foot injury in the Blues’ Dec. 16 win over the L.A. Kings and missed seven games with the injury.

Schwartz had 11 goals and 27 points in 31 games prior to the injury.

Fraser was a minus-1 in his Blues’ debut while playing 4:42 in St. Louis’ 4-3 loss to the Ducks Friday night.

Risk Factors: Los Angeles Kings edition

2014 NHL Stanley Cup Final - Game Five

From the same bunch of pessimists who brought you “Why your team won’t win the Stanley Cup,” PHT presents a new series called “Risk Factors,” i.e. three reasons to be worried about each NHL team in 2014-15.

Los Angeles Kings

1. They’ve played a ton of hockey recently. The Kings won the Stanley Cup in 2012, went to the Western Conference Final in ’13 and won it all again last year. That made for some long springs and short summers, which didn’t leave much for the requisite rest and recuperation needed to embark on yet another 82-game regular season.

It’s fair to say all that hockey took its toll. Jonathan Quick spent the offseason and a good chunk of the preseason rehabbing his surgically-repaired wrist, which came after a ’13-14 campaign in which he missed two months with a groin injury. (Quick also underwent back surgery following L.A.’s first Cup win.)

NHL on NBC analyst Pierre McGuire referenced Quick’s health during a preseason conference call:

“I think another compounding thing is you just don’t know the health of Kings goalie Jonathan Quick (who had wrist surgery in June),” McGuire said. “I asked Jonathan if he felt a lot of young people would try and copy his goaltending style over time because he’s proven to be so successful.

“He said they may try and copy it but they’re going to end up in the emergency room.

“He plays just super aggressive and as [NBCSN executive producer] Sam Flood once said about Tim Thomas, he plays the [goalie] position like a linebacker in football. Quick does the same thing, and I worry a lot about whether he’ll have enough juice left in the tank.”

Kyle Clifford, meanwhile, was off ice this summer recovering from a broken wrist suffered during the Cup Final; Drew Doughty was absent from a large part of training camp dealing with an upper-body injury; Marian Gaborik missed four exhibition games with a groin ailment.

Part of this stems from playing so many games — lest we forget that six Kings (Quick, Doughty, Dustin Brown, Jeff Carter, Anze Kopitar, Slava Voynov) also played in Sochi — but part of this stems from the way L.A. plays. Darryl Sutter’s offense is predicated on getting pucks in deep, grinding to retrieve them, then grinding some more while keeping possession. The Kings are a big, heavy team that doesn’t shy away from taking the body, but even the strongest wear down after time.

2. They’re thinner than before. Los Angeles returns most of the team that hoisted Lord Stanley’s Mug in June, but a few key contributors are gone. Once GM Dean Lombardi made re-signing Gaborik a top priority, the resulting cap crunch meant there was no room for Willie Mitchell, a vital cog in both of Los Angeles’ championships.

Not to overstate Mitchell’s importance, but do consider this: the season he missed (2013) was the one in which L.A. failed to advance to the Final; last year, the 37-year-old blueliner averaged over 20 minutes during the regular season then expanded that role in the playoffs, bumping his TOI to 22:20 while scoring four points in 18 games.

“I miss Mitchie here on this team,” Doughty said recently, per LA Kings Insider.

The Kings’ cap crunch also cost them promising youngster Linden Vey, who was flipped to Vancouver at the draft. Though Vey only appeared in 18 games last year, he was one of three youngsters who starred in AHL Manchester and seemed destined to do good things with the parent club. The other two youngsters, of course, were Tyler Toffoli and Tanner Pearson — both now firmly entrenched in Los Angeles on “That 70s Line.”

The Kings lost veteran depth as well. Colin Fraser left to sign in St. Louis, while free-agent acquisition Adam Cracknell was scooped off waivers by Columbus.

3. It’s really hard to repeat. As most know, there hasn’t been a back-to-back Stanley Cup champion since Detroit turned the trick in 1997 and ’98. Heck, it’s been five years since the defending champion even made it back to the Final — that was Detroit in ’09 — though L.A. and Chicago have come close in recent years.

“It’s probably the toughest trophy to win,” Sutter said at the start of camp, per LA Kings Insider. “To do it back-to-back, especially in the salary cap [era] in a parity league – I mean, if we’d have lost Game 7 to Chicago in the conference finals, then we wouldn’t be talking about it.

“It tells you how close it is.”

Part of that difficulty comes from having a big target on your back. This year, the Kings aren’t defending their title like they did in 2012 — now, they’re the two-time champions (and some people are already throwing around the dynasty label.)

This summer, it seems the rest of the Western Conference adjusted itself accordingly. After watching how much success L.A. had with its four centers — Anze Kopitar, Jeff Carter, Jarret Stoll and Mike Richards — several teams set about adding depth down the middle: Anaheim acquired Ryan Kesler, Dallas traded for Jason Spezza, St. Louis inked Paul Stastny and Chicago signed Brad Richards.

It made for something of an arms race, but the Kings remain convinced their biggest challenge will come from within.

”Seems like the West is loading up, but at the end of the day, I don’t think it’s going to matter much what the other teams do,” Kopitar said, per AP. ”It’s going to matter what we do.”

Leblanc, Elliott among Monday’s notable waivers

Louis Leblanc, Joey Hishon, Calvin Pickard

A pair of once promising prospects are now sitting on the wire.

Louis Leblanc — the 18th overall pick at the 2009 NHL Entry Draft — and Stefan Elliott, Colorado’s second-round choice (49th overall) at that same draft, have been placed on waivers by the Ducks and Avs respectively, per TVA.

Leblanc, 23, arrived in Anaheim this summer after a disappointing stint in Montreal in which he scored just five goals in 50 appearances over the course of three seasons. He famously — or, more accurately, his girlfriend famously — complained about getting cut from the Habs prior to the start of last season; the former Harvard product then welcomed a “fresh start’ after the Ducks acquired him via trade in June.

Elliott, also 23, could be done in Colorado after spending his entire professional career with the organization. Like Leblanc, he appeared in just a handful of games — 58, to be exact — with most of those coming in his rookie campaign. Since then, Elliott’s spent the majority of time with AHL Lake Erie and has been bypassed by a number of defensemen on the depth chart, including fellow ’09 draftee Tyson Barrie.

As for others that hit the waiver wire on Monday:

— St. Louis waived three-time Stanley Cup winner Colin Fraser, just weeks after signing the veteran to a deal. Fraser, 29, signed a two-way contract with the Blues, so this move wasn’t entirely unexpected.

— Dallas waived goalie Jussi Rynnas, meaning the backup gig to Kari Lehtonen will now likely go to Anders Lindback.

— Toronto waived veteran forward Troy Bodie, who had 10 points in 47 games for the Leafs last year.