Here are a few bits of news from around the NHL to keep your Thursday afternoon going.
- Every now and then, a “fringe” player becomes popular enough that people remember him almost as much as big-name stars. Of course, it never hurts if that guy won his fair share of Stanley Cups.
Mike Keane fits into that category when it comes to ’90s hockey. He played in 1,161 regular season games and a stunning 220 playoff contests in his NHL career, winning three Stanley Cups with the three different teams: the Montreal Canadiens, Colorado Avalanche and Dallas Stars. He also endeared himself to many when he allegedly fed Patrick Roy the line about not hearing Jeremy Roenick’s smack talk because he had “Stanley Cup rings plugging his ears.”
The Manitoba Moose retired Keane’s number last winter, so if you follow the trail of Moose staffers joining the Jets organization, it wouldn’t be shocking if the Jets confirm the Winnipeg Sun’s rumor that Keane might become an assistant coach on Claude Noel’s staff. We’ll have to wait and see, but it would make plenty of sense.
- The Washington Capitals briefly went above the salary cap ceiling by signing Troy Brouwer to a two-year, $4.7 million deal and then temporarily eased those concerns by trading Eric Fehr to Winnipeg. The team still needs to find a way to sign restricted free agent defenseman Karl Alzner, though, and the original thought was that Tom Poti would go on the long-term injury reserve to make space. Stephen Whyno reveals a somewhat stunning option, though: Brouwer is another possible candidate to go on the LTIR. Yup, that’s a little baffling.
- In much lighter news, Forbes revealed its list of the NHL teams who “disappointed their fans most consistently.” The Phoenix Coyotes and New York Islanders were at the top of that list, which included the New York Rangers and Washington Capitals in its top 10. On the other end of the spectrum, the Detroit Red Wings were considered the easiest team to root for, followed by the Pittsburgh Penguins and two mild surprises: the Anaheim Ducks and Carolina Hurricanes. Read that post for how they made those determinations and more. (H/T to Puck Daddy.)