When asked about “The Traveling Jagrs,” Jaromir Jagr had a simple comment: “They know who the man is.”
Sometimes it’s difficult to tell how often the New Jersey Devils forward is being facetious and how often that swagger is legitimate, but when you see the kind of plays he can still make at 42, maybe his bluster is justified.
Take this ridiculous no-look pass (which set up a Michael Cammalleri goal) from last night’s shootout loss against the Calgary Flames, for instance:
Yeah, that’s one of those “How did he do that?” plays.
While Jagr’s seemingly on a little bit of a slower pace in his second season with New Jersey, his 13 points still lead all Devils scorers. With 1,060 career assists, he’s currently ranked eighth all-time, just three behind Steve Yzerman for seventh in league history.
The New Jersey Devils aren’t being particularly forthcoming about what, precisely, is the problem for Michael Cammalleri. GM Lou Lamoriello told the Bergen Record that he remains day-to-day and “just doesn’t feel right.”
“We’re not hiding anything,” Lamoriello said. “You can watch the video. He got hit in the jaw. He played the next night. He just doesn’t feel right. Whether it’s his head, his neck, his jaw, we’re just making sure he feels 100 percent.”
The check that leaves Cammalleri day-to-day (Lamoriello doesn’t think it’s a long-term issue) happened during an Oct. 24 shootout loss against the Dallas Stars.
It’s an especially big shame since Cammalleri, 32, seems like he’s been fitting in so well with the Devils so far. Even though he’s parked with a three-game pointless streak, Cammalleri has seven points in eight games with the Devils while firing a robust 29 shots on goal.
Don’t expect the Devils to get any sympathy from tonight’s opponent, though, as they face the banged-up Columbus Blue Jackets on Saturday.
The Dallas Stars beat them 3-2 via a shootout on Friday, extending the Devils’ shootout losing streak to a ridiculous 18. Unless my eyes are deceiving me, New Jersey hasn’t won a shootout since a victory against the Winnipeg Jets on March 10, 2013.
They went 2-7 in shootouts during that 2012-13 campaign, yet last season was a true mind-blowing run, as they dropped all 13.
The Devils have understandably shaken off this pattern, for the most part. In the case of tonight’s loss against Dallas, Devils head coach Peter DeBoer seems happy that New Jersey at least secured a standings point, as the Bergen Record’s Tom Gulitti reports.
DeBoer: "Fortunate to get a point, but we’ll take it."
Jason Spezza and Jamie Benn scored on their two shootout opportunities while Michael Cammalleri and Jaromir Jagr were shut down by Kari Lehtonen. Both Stars scorers deserve high marks for nifty work, too:
Fun/annoying narratives aside, this is merely the Devils’ first shootout loss of 2014-15. If this continues, the questions will only pile up, though.
Montreal made other moves, too, including grabbing cheap goaltending insurance in Devan Dubnyk (Nashville is retaining part of his salary). But the real star was Vanek, who has 21 tallies this year and has been one of the league’s most consistent goalscorers over the last few seasons. He’s set to join a team boasting nine 10-goal scorers (led by Max Pacioretty, with 29).
From a short-term perspective, you could argue the Canadiens are the big winners, while the long-term winner is:
One could joke the 2014 and 2015 NHL Drafts should take place in Buffalo since the Sabres hold all the picks. While that’s hyperbole, it’s only slight — GM Tim Murray (and former GM Darcy Regier) have netted a ton of selections by flipping their various assets.
On Wednesday, the Sabres moved Matt Moulson and Jaroslav Halak juuust under the deadline after it looked like they might take the last day off. Murray also decided to keep Chris Stewart — one of the pieces acquired in the Ryan Miller-Steve Ott deal to St. Louis — which has its advantages, as he has a year remaining on his contract.
While technically not a trade, the Sabres also grabbed Cory Conacher for nothing off of waivers. That was a low-risk moved by Murray, who knows Conacher from their time together in Ottawa.
Make no mistake about it, though, the Rangers probably could have kept Callahan if they truly wanted to. Maybe that comes down to GM Glen Sather playing hardball … or maybe Vigneault wanted a better fit for his system?
Callahan, on talks with NY: I truly thought we'd work something out that would work for both sides. I wanted to stay there.
Worth noting the Rangers added some defensive depth by getting Swiss blueliner Raphael Diaz out of Vancouver for a fifth-round pick. All in all, a good day in the Big Apple.
Right now, the St. Louis deal stings — both in terms of how it transpired and what it leaves the Bolts with for the remainder of the regular season and playoffs. There are positives, though. Even with Callahan’s fearless, shot-block style in mind, the Bolts got a decade younger today as Callahan is 28 while St. Louis is 38.
The Bolts also received a first and conditional second-round pick in the deal, which is a positive “look towards the future” move for a team that dealt away its disgruntled captain, and was hamstrung by his desire to only join one team. The first-rounder is also in the highly coveted ’15 Draft, which is set to include wunderkinds Connor McDavid, Jack Eichel and Dylan Strome.
And hey, Callahan always could stick around Tampa Bay beyond this year…
Yzerman said Callahan not acquired as a rental. “Our intention is to sign him.”
Back in 2011-12, the Kings made a big trade with the Columbus Blue Jackets in nabbing Jeff Carter, who helped them win a Stanley Cup.
Could history repeat itself with Marian Gaborik?
The Kings largely used pieces from previous goalie trades (a third-rounder in the Ben Scrivens deal; Matt Frattin from the Jonathan Bernier swap) to grab Gaborik for a low-risk price. the 32-year-old carries health risks as always, yet the thought of a guy with two 40+ goal seasons on his resume added to a squad that includes Anze Kopitar and Carter must leave Western Conference teams somewhat concerned.
The Capitals came into the deadline with two question marks: goaltending and scoring depth. They traded for Halak to push Braden Holtby in net and grabbed Dustin Penner to help boost their secondary scoring. GM George McPhee needed to make moves this week, and he delivered — without altering the current roster very much.
Ales Hemsky only cost Ottawa a third and fifth-round pick, the same cost as Marcel Goc (Pittsburgh) and Brandon Pirri (Florida)… One-time All-Star Stephane Robidas (injury and all) went to the Ducks for the low price of a fourth-rounder… Penner netted the same charge leaving Anaheim for the Capitals.
In short, there were deals to be had. Kudos to the clubs that found ’em.
Specifically, Islanders GM Garth Snow. Parts I and II of the Thomas Vanek trade represent disappointing results for the Isles, although some may take solace in Snow at least getting something for the coveted sniper.
Do note we said “some.” Not “many.”
Canucks GM Mike Gillis didn’t move Ryan Kesler and was skewered for how he handled the Roberto Luongo situation. He’s losing in the court of public opinion and, while that might not sound like much, it is the kind of failing that can get you fired.
If there’s a bright side, the goalie controversy (well, the latest goalie controversy) is over and there’s still the option of dealing Kesler at the draft, when his stock should still be high. You know, assuming he doesn’t get injured again.
The Sabres raking in picks makes Calgary and Edmonton look bad. The Oilers made a lot of moves and added some goaltending depth, but didn’t get much in return for Hemsky/Nick Schultz and were unable to recoup their second-round pick at the ’14 Draft, something GM Craig MacTavish wanted to do.
The Flames, meanwhile, did nothing. It’s true that pieces such as Michael Cammalleri weren’t carrying heavy hype coming into the deadline, but now one wonders what he provides as a pending free agent… for a rebuilding Calgary team.
Hudler scored in the second period to give Calgary a one-goal lead heading into the intermission, then added a helper on Michael Cammalleri’s winning power-play goal with less than four minutes remaining in regulation time.
The offensive outburst from Calgary – with only 19 shots on Avalanche goalie Jean-Sebastien Giguere – came after the Flames had been shutout in three of their previous four games and outscored 10-1 in that four-game losing streak.
But leaving Hudler off the Czech team, despite his 35 points, left some with a sour taste. As per the Calgary Herald, Hudler did not talk to the media in the morning.
“No Hudler on that team? The Czechs must be favoured to win the gold medal because they must be awfully talented,” said Flames head coach Bob Hartley, as per the Calgary Herald.