Tag: Derek Meech


Derek Meech jets to the KHL


A summer of turnover continues for the Winnipeg Jets, as defenseman Derek Meech signed with KHL team Dinamo Minsk, according to NHL.com’s Patrick Williams.

It seems as if this trend comes in threes. Williams points out that Meech is the third Jets player to leave Winnipeg for the KHL this summer – Alex Burmistrov joined Kazan and Mark Dekanich will play for Zagreb – and also the third Jet to play for Minsk. (Evander Kane and Tim Stapleton also suited up for that KHL squad.)

Meech, 29, never really made much of an impact in Winnipeg. He played just 18 games for the Jets (16 in 2013, two in 2011-12) after playing fairly regularly for the Detroit Red Wings. He managed a single assist in his 18 games with Winnipeg.

The Jets certainly have bigger fish to fry, though, as this post points out.

Still, one cannot help but wonder how much the honeymoon period will last in Winnipeg, as the team enters its third season with a roster that doesn’t look very formidable on paper.

Injured Burmistrov returns to Winnipeg

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Alexander Burmistrov’s upper-body injury might be serious, or it might be nothing.

Either way, the Jets aren’t taking any chances.

On Tuesday, Burmistrov was summoned back to Winnipeg from AHL St. John’s to be evaluated by the Jets’ medical staff — here’s more, from Ed Tait at the Winnipeg Free Press:

The extent of the injury is not known, but an IceCaps spokesman said Tuesday night that with a four-day break in the schedule before the club returns to the ice again Friday night in St. John’s against Springfield, the team opted to have Burmistrov checked out by the Jets medical staff.

Burmistrov’s arrival in Winnipeg became public when he used his Instagram account to post a picture of his airline ticket here.

The 21-year-old Russian has been mediocre during his first-ever stint in the American league. While he’s managed to appear in all 22 games, he’s only posted 2G-9A-11PTS — though, to be fair, the IceCaps aren’t exactly an offensive juggernaut.

St. John’s leading scorers are Spencer Machacek (13 points), Derek Meech (13 points) and Jason Jaffray (12 points), and the team has scored the seventh-fewest goals in the AHL this season.

Back with Detroit, Quincey wants elusive Stanley Cup ring


After a whirlwind day that saw him traded first to Tampa Bay and then Detroit, Kyle Quincey has settled in nicely as a Red Wing. He talked to reporters, spoke favorably about going back to the Motor City…before mentioning the organization didn’t give him a Stanley Cup ring in 2008, and how that’s driving him to get one this year.

“By far that’s the biggest plus coming to Detroit, winning,” Quincey told MLive.com. “Being there and being able to watch [as a Black Ace] and be a very small part of that, you want to get back to that.”

“Going to a great team that has a chance to win a Cup — that’s your dream as a little kid growing up.”

Club policy prevented Quincey from getting a ring in 2007-08 — he only played six regular-season games — and at the start of next season, he was put on waivers and scooped up by Los Angeles. Four years later, Detroit made amends by re-acquiring the 26-year-old rearguard in exchange for a first-round pick and AHL defenseman Sebastien Piche. (Of note, the guy Detroit originally kept over Quincey, Derek Meech, is currently with Winnipeg’s AHL affiliate in St. John’s.)

Quincey says he has no hard feelings about how things ended in Detroit, especially about not getting a ring.

“I never once said I was disappointed or upset,” Quincey said. “That’s team policy and it is what it is. I would like to get my own this year, that’s for sure.

“When I got put on waivers everything was so new to me and going so fast I didn’t know what any of it meant. Next thing I know I’m on a flight to L.A., and everything just worked out so well there. I had a chance to play in the NHL, which was my dream. I didn’t think it was going to happen in Detroit.”

It’s expected Quincey will play on Detroit’s third defense pairing with Jonathan Ericsson.

“Just from the outside looking in, they got great chemistry on the top four,” Quincey said. “I played with Johnny in the minors. If that’s where I start, that’s fine with me.”

We have a trade to announce: Yzerman orchestrates three-team deal

yzerman tampa

Steve Yzerman is emerging as the star of this year’s trade deadline.

The Tampa Bay GM has pulled off his third and fourth trades over the last five days by sending forward Steve Downie to Colorado in exchange for defenseman Kyle Quincey, then trading Quincey to Detroit in exchange for the Red Wings’ first-round pick in 2012 and defenseman Sebastien Piche.

Tampa now has two first-round and three second-round picks (possibly four) at the 2012 draft.

As for the remaining details…

— Quincey, 26, was arguably Colorado’s top blueliner this season. He was tied for the team lead in defenseman scoring (23 points, with Erik Johnson) but led in goals (five), power play goals (three) and time on ice per game (22:21).

It’s not surprising Detroit wanted Quincey after losing him on waivers in 2008:

The Wings placed Quincey on waivers because they needed some salary cap space in case they needed to recall a goaltender from Grand Rapids in the event of a short-term injury or illness to one of their goalies.

Wings general manager Ken Holland said he talked to about five or six teams that were interested in Quincey and at one point were close to a deal that fell through. Teams were reluctant to part with a draft pick for a player who hadn’t established himself in the NHL.

“I’m happy for Kyle. He’s been patient,” Holland said. “With us acquiring Brad Stuart and the development of Brett Lebda and Jonathan Ericsson. We like Derek Meech. We can’t keep everybody.”

— Somewhat surprising to see Downie get shipped out. The 24-year-old had been a solid contributor for the Bolts since coming over from Philadelphia three seasons ago, scoring a career-high 22 goals in 2009-10. He was also Tampa’s fourth-leading scorer in last year’s playoffs (2G-12A-14PTS in 17 games), finishing ahead of Steve Stamkos.

Downie’s reputation as one of the league’s most renowned — and reckless — agitators gives the Avs more bite, something they’ve been lacking this season outside of Cody McLeod and Shane O’Brien. That said, Downie has a penchant for taking bad penalties and has been a repeat visitor to the NHL’s disciplinary department.

— Downie and Quincey are both impending RFAs. Downie’s in the final year of a deal with an annual cap hit of $1.85 million while Quincey’s is $3.13 million.

— Piche is an undrafted free agent currently playing with AHL Grand Rapids.

— Projecting: Detroit’s top six defensemen are now Nicklas Lidstrom, Ian White, Niklas Kronwall, Stuart, Ericsson and Quincey.

New name, new location, same game plan? Winnipeg Jets staying quiet in free agency

Kevin Cheveldayoff, Craig Heisinger
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Last season when then Thrashers GM Rick Dudley helped pick apart the Chicago Blackhawks in their great salary sell-off, the additions made to the team helped turn things around in Atlanta for at least a little while. Character additions and talent like Andrew Ladd, Brent Sopel, and Dustin Byfuglien proved to be great ones as Ladd eventually became team captain and Byfuglien was an All-Star while scoring 21 goals as a defenseman.

With the Thrashers being sold and moved to Winnipeg and a new staff in charge of things in Manitoba with GM Kevin Cheveldayoff and team VP Craig Heisinger, things are taking more of a quiet turn for the Jets. It’s the kind of turn that makes you think back on Thrashers offseasons of the past while Don Waddell was in charge of things.

Taking a look at who the Jets have signed this summer, there’s not a single name that jumps out at you for being a difference maker kind of player. Derek Meech, Tanner Glass, Rick Rypien, and Randy Jones highlight the Jets offseason. Meanwhile, they’re still trying to get a deal worked out with Ladd and have seen improving talent Anthony Stewart bolt to Carolina.

If that sounds unimpressive, it makes us think back to the summer of 2009 that saw the Thrashers sign luminaries like Stewart, Noah Welch, Josh Gratton, and Mike Vernace while retaining Colby Armstrong and Kari Lehtonen. For one of this year’s Jets signings, Randy Jones thinks that his new team is going to have to be more blue collar than anything to win as he told the Winnipeg Sun’s Paul Friesen.

“Last year for a good part of the season they were only a point or two behind us and Washington,” Jones said on a media conference call from his home in New Brunswick, Monday. “They work extremely hard, and that’s the main thing you need in this league, is hard work and determination. That’s one thing that stood out, they never give up, they always battled and were always in your face. We’re going to give a good push this season.”

All the hard work in the world can get you only so far though and the Jets are going to need goals. With Byfuglien, Tobias Enstrom, and Evander Kane already in the fold and young centerman Alexander Burmistrov growing up on the job, there’s a handful of point producers there. Overall, however, they’re going to need to find offense from somewhere. Ed Tait of the Winnipeg Free Press highlights a few free agent targets Cheveldayoff could and should be looking at to help the Jets get on the board.

Tait points out guys like Antti Miettinen, Jason Arnott, Alex Kovalev, and Cory Stillman could be sought out to help produce goals. There’s also some major nostalgia available in Teemu Selanne. Of course, Selanne leaving Anaheim for one last run in Winnipeg is more of a pipe dream than a possibility. Regardless, unless the Jets start getting active they’re going to be fighting for goals and hoping that new head coach Claude Noel has the strategies to help the Jets win with minimal offense. Sure Ondrej Pavelec is a very solid goalie, but asking him to be Vezina-level night in and night out is asking a lot of him.

The Jets have been all about surprises since True North bought the team, but they’re going to need to do things differently from how the Thrashers did them in the past if they hope to conquer the Southeast Division and make the playoffs next season.