The Edmonton Oilers surprised a few people yesterday when they fired head coach Ralph Krueger after just one lockout shortened season. While the Oilers organization was a bit cryptic about the firing, the reason became clear a few hours after the firing. The Oilers will actually be hiring Toronto Marlies head coach Dallas Eakins, with a press conference slated for tomorrow.
Eakins was a top coaching candidate for a lot of teams with coaching vacancies, including the Rangers. It is rumored that Alain Vigneault is still the front runner for the job in New York, with names like Ken Gernander, Mark Messier, and Lindy Ruff still in the mix.
In case you missed the news yesterday, the NHL and the NHLPA approved a new rule that makes visors mandatory for any player who has played less than 26 NHL games. Players who have played 26 or more games will have the option of wearing a visor via a grandfathered rule. Those who have played 25 games or less will not have an option, and will be forced to wear visors. Due to this rule change, expect a modification to the “instigator with a visor” penalty as well.
There are currently no Rangers who have played less than 26 games on the active roster. Chris Kreider has played 23 regular season games, but has cleared the 26 game threshold with playoff games.
The news that was all but official is not officially official, as Mike Morreale at NHL.com is reporting that Yankee Stadium will be hosting two outdoor NHL games during Super Bowl week in 2014. The Rangers will face the Devils on January 26, 2014 at 12:30pm, and then the Islanders on January 29, 2014 at 7:30pm. The Rangers will be the visiting team in both games.
According to TSN, specifically their “Insider Trading” program, the NHL is planning to host 6 outdoor games next season. As of this writing (Tuesday night), nothing has been confirmed by the league, but it’s certainly an interesting concept. Below are the rumored dates, matchups and locations.
January 1st at Michigan Stadium between Toronto and Detroit
January 25th at Dodger Stadium between Anaheim and LA
January 26th at Yankee Stadium between the Islanders and the Rangers
January 29th at Yankee Stadium between the Devils and the Rangers
March 1st at Soldier Field between Pittsburgh and Chicago
March 2nd at BC Place between Ottawa and Vancouver
The biggest news of the season, and possibly the year, occurred yesterday as the NHL has partnered with the You Can Play Project. For those unfamiliar with YCP, it is a foundation started by Patrik Burke (son of Brian Burke, brother of the late Brendan Burke) that delivers the message of tolerance and education on LGBT issues in sports.
This partnership is the first of its kind between a professional sports league and a LGBT program, and represents a significant step in the right direction for tolerance. Over the past year, several players have made videos in support of the project, but those were done without connection to the league. With the league fully on-board, the YCP Project will continue to make strides.
Kudos to the NHL and the NHLPA. You can read the full press release after the jump.
The trade deadline is today at 3pm, and the Rangers have already been active. They’ve acquired Ryane Clowe for draft picks, and are rumored to be in on Ryan O’Byrne, a right handed defenseman form Colorado. Jamie McBain was a name rumored to be available, but with Joni Pitkanen getting hurt, it’s unlikely the Canes move him.
Use this as your open thread to discuss the deadline deals. Major deals will be posted here as well.
11:32 – Sounds like Miikka Kiprusoff will block any trade as Darren Dreger reports that he will stay in Calgary and may retire at the end of the season. Ben Bishop, Roberto Luongo and Ryan Miller just got more valuable.
The Rangers may have been quiet today, but the Dallas Stars and Calgary Flames made a lot of noise in the first few days of trade deadline season. Listing out all the trades so far (courtesy of a ton of people on Twitter, but mostly Bob McKenzie and Darren Dreger):
Jaromir Jagr from Dallas to Boston for Lane MacDermid, Cody Payne, and a 2nd round pick (1st if Boston gets to the ECF).
Derek Roy from Dallas to Vancouver for Kevin Connauton and a 2nd round pick.
Marc-Andre Bergeron from Carolina to Tampa Bay for Adam Hall and a 7th round pick.
Jay Bouwmeester from Calgary to St. Louis for Reto Berra, Marc Cundari, and a 1st round pick.
Robyn Regehr from Buffalo to LA for a pair of 2nd round picks.
Michal Handzus from San Jose to Chicago for a 4th round pick.
Jordan Leopold from Buffalo to St. Louis for a 2nd round pick and a 5th round pick.
And obviously, we all know about the Penguins getting Jarome Iginla, Brendan Morrow, and Douglass Murray.
The Rangers get Ryane Clowe from San Jose for a 2013 2nd, 2013 3rd (originally Florida’s), and conditional 2014 2nd (5th if Clowe doesn’t re-sign or the Rangers fail to make the ECF). More details here.
We will be updating this all night as trades get announced.
The Carolina Hurricanes have placed center Jussi Jokinen on waivers, which prompted a lot of discussion about the Rangers claiming him. Jokinen is having a down year, but he is still a good face off guy and one of Carolina’s top puck possession forwards (1.11 CorsiRelQoc, 3rd among ‘Canes forwards). Jokinen is shooting well below his career average (9%, average of 13%), which would affect his point totals. Also, his quality of teammates have taken a big hit over the past few years.
Two things might stop the Rangers from claiming him: His contract ($3 million through next season), and that he would be contract number 50 for this year. Fifty contracts is the max, and leaves the Rangers with minimal flexibility. His contract is a big dent in a year where the cap goes down. The Rangers would need to move a body this year and another body in the offseason to fit him in.
Per Aaron Portzline, the NHL and the NHLPA have approved the most recent proposal for realignment. The new plan, detailed here, will see the Detroit Red Wings and Columbus Blue Jackets move to the Eastern Conference, with the Jets departing for the Western Conference. The Atlantic Division will contain the Rangers, Islanders, Devils, Flyers, Capitals, Penguins, Blue Jackets, and Hurricanes. That is one tough division.
Original Post: Katie Strang is reporting that Patrick Kaleta will have a phone hearing with The Shanna-no-ban. Per league rules, a phone hearing indicates that Kaleta will receive no more than five games if he is to be suspended at all. Kaleta’s hearing is about this dirty hit: