Carey Price dominated the NHL last season, winning the Hart and Ted Lindsay Trophies in addition to the Vezina, so it seems only fitting that his virtual counterpart would be exactly effective.
Price will be the top goaltender in the upcoming video game NHL 16 with a 94 overall rating, per EA Sports’ release. That’s allowed him to leapfrog Henrik Lundqvist and Jonathan Quick, who led all netminders in last year’s ratings. Price’s rise didn’t push either of them down though as he went from a 92 to 94 while Lundqvist and Quick have once again been listed as a 93 going into the season.
Rounding out this year’s top five is Boston’s Tuukka Rask (92) and Nashville’s Pekka Rinne (92). Rask received the same rating last summer, but Rinne is up from his previous mark of 91.
Braden Holtby (91), Sergei Bobrovsky (90), and Cory Schneider (90) are the remaining goaltenders with a rating above 90. That’s a new position for both Holtby and Schneider, although Bobrovsky simply maintained his rating from the year prior.
Colorado Avalanche goalie Semyon Varlamov remained level too with an 89 rating that was good enough for ninth place this season. After a strong showing in his first full campaign as the Anaheim Ducks’ starting goaltender, Frederik Andersen (89) was selected to round out the top 10.
NHL 16 will be out on Sept. 15 in North America and Sept. 17 in Europe.
It’s been a pretty good summer for breakout Sens forward Mark Stone.
He finished second to Aaron Ekblad as the NHL’s top rookie, scored a three-year, $10.5 million extension from the Sens and, this week, confirmed there’s no lingering effect from the P.K. Subban slash he took to the wrist during Ottawa’s opening-round playoff loss to Montreal.
“It’s felt great out there the last couple of skates,” he told the Ottawa Sun. “The shot feels good. The hands feel good. My legs are starting to come along. I feel good and I feel like I’m 100 percent.”
That wasn’t the case this spring, when Stone suffered a microfracture from the Subban slash — an incident that set off a mini-firestorm between two clubs. Following the series, which the Habs won four games to two, Stone expressed frustration over how much the injury — which occurred in the second period of Game 1 — limited him.
Stone played through the injury, but needed to freeze his wrist before and sometimes again during each game.
“It was just frustrating not being able to feel parts of my wrist and parts of my fingers,” he explained. “It definitely didn’t help my shot, but I was able to play through it.”
Now healthy, Stone can focus on two major tasks — getting Ottawa back into the playoffs, and avoiding the dreaded sophomore slump.
The Los Angeles Kings are giving Peter Budaj a shot at earning a contract in training camp, per LA Kings Insider.
Budaj, the 32-year-old veteran that spent last year with Winnipeg’s AHL affiliate, will attend camp on a professional tryout, the club confirmed on Friday.
The news comes after L.A.’s backup from last season, Martin Jones, was traded away to Boston. The Kings later filled their No. 2 void by signing Jhonas Enroth in free agency.
Budaj will now try to secure a deal as the club’s No. 3 or 4 option and, if he’s successful, would presumably land with the club’s new AHL affiliate in Ontario (CA).
Though Budaj has fallen on hard times and was beaten out of the backup spot last year in Montreal by Dustin Tokarski, it’s easy to see why the Kings are giving him a shot.
L.A. is a little light on goalie prospects, having traded away the likes of Jones, Ben Scrivens and Jonathan Bernier in recent seasons, and could use a veteran stopgap. The Kings do have a pair of young fifth-round picks (Alec Dillon and Patrick Bartozek) in the system, though, along with J.F. Berube, who helped the Monarchs capture the Calder Cup last year.