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Phil Kessel trade: links

Jenn Menendez 2 days ago

Here is a smattering of stories out there on the blockbuster Phil Kessel trade for those of you who can’t get enough. While it’s widely considered a major coup by general manager Jim Rutherford for the Penguins, you’ll see there are some interesting takes around hockey on what it means for the Maple Leafs.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


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Pens shut out of major NHL Awards

Jenn Menendez 1 week ago

Kris Letang didn’t win the Masterson. Sidney Crosby didn’t win the Hart. And Marc-Andre Fleury didn’t even seem to register among voters as a candidate for the Vezina Trophy.

The Penguins were shut out of the major NHL Awards in Las Vegas Wednesday night.

Letang, their best shot, was a finalist for the NHL’s Bill Masterson Memorial Trophy for “perseverance, sportsmanship and dedication to hockey” but was edged out by Minnesota Wild goaltender Devan Dubnyk who certainly had a remarkable season.

Crosby, who finished fifth in voting for the Hart Trophy, earned the team’s only award of the night when he was named to the NHL All-Star Team Second Team.

That’s right, the second team. 

The highlight of the entire award show was when Canadian teenager Jonathan Pitre took the stage in the suit that Sidney Crosby bought him. (see Dave Molinari’s story here) Pitre suffers from a rare and painful disease, but was beaming in his threads bought by Crosby.

Up tomorrow: The NHL is expected to release the entire 2015-16 schedule by mid-morning. 

 


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NHL rule changes for 2015-16

Jenn Menendez 1 week ago

The NHL Board of Governors formally approved 3-on-3 overtime today in an effort to cut down on ties and shootouts. Power plays will revert to 4-on-3 in the period, or 5-on-3 in the instance of two minor penalties assessed against a team.

The league also agreed to expand the use of video review to include a Coach’s Challenge in a “limited scope of scenarios.” Both begin this fall.

Here are all the rule changes for the 2015-16 season, directly from the NHL:

3-on-3 Overtime

1. Teams play an additional overtime period of not more than five

(5) minutes with the team scoring first declared the winner and being

awarded an additional point.

2. The overtime period will be played with each team at 3-on-3 manpower

(plus goaltender) for the full five-minute period.

3. Manpowers during overtime will be adjusted to reflect the situation

in the game, but at no time will a team have fewer than three (3)

skaters on the ice during the overtime period. For example, if a team

enters the overtime period on a power play, manpower would be

adjusted from 5 on 4 at the end of regulation to 4 on 3 at the start

of overtime. If a minor penalty is assessed during overtime, the

teams will play 4 on 3. If a second minor penalty is assessed to the

same team during overtime, the teams will play 5 on 3.

4. If the game remains tied at the end of the five (5) minute overtime

period, the teams will proceed to a three-round shootout. After each

team has taken three shots, if the score remains tied, the shootout

will proceed to a “sudden death” format.

5. Clubs who pull their goaltender for an extra attacker during the

overtime period (other than on a delayed penalty) will be subject to

the potential forfeiture of their one (1) point earned for the tie at

the end of regulation in the event the opposing team scores into the

empty net.

6. At the end of regulation, the entire ice surface will be shoveled and

the goalies will change ends. There will be no further ice surface

maintenance during the balance of overtime period. Following the

overtime period and before the shootout, the ice surface will be

shoveled again, and the goalies will change ends.

 

Expanded Video Review

This expanded video review is intended to be extremely narrow in

scope and the original call on the ice is to be overturned if, and only if,

a determination is made by the on-ice Official(s) (in consultation with the

Toronto Video Room) that the original call on the ice was not correct. If a

review is not conclusive and/or there is any doubt whatsoever as to whether

the call on the ice was correct, the on-ice Official(s) will be instructed

to confirm their original call.

 

Coach’s Challenge

1. A team may only request a Coach’s Challenge to review the following

scenarios:

a) “Off-Side” Play Leading to a Goal. A play that results in a “GOAL”

call on the ice where the defending team asserts that the play should

have been stopped by reason of an “Off-Side” infraction by the

attacking team.

b) Scoring Plays Involving Potential “Interference on the Goalkeeper”

(i) A play that results in a “GOAL” call on the ice where the

defending team asserts that the goal should have been disallowed due

to “Interference on the Goalkeeper,” as described in Rules 69.1, 69.3

and 69.4; or

(ii) A play that results in a “NO GOAL” call on the ice despite the

puck having entered the net, where the on-ice Officials have

determined that the attacking team was guilty of “Interference on the

Goalkeeper” but where the attacking team asserts: (i) there was no

actual contact of any kind initiated by an attacking Player with the

goalkeeper; or (ii) the attacking Player was pushed, shoved, or

fouled by a defending Player causing the attacking Player to come

into contact with the goalkeeper; or (iii) the attacking Player’s

positioning within the goal crease did not impair the goalkeeper’s

ability to defend his goal and, in fact, had no discernible impact on

the play.

2. A team may only request a Coach’s Challenge if they have their

time-out available and the Coach’s Challenge must be effectively

initiated prior to the resumption of play.

3. If the Coach’s Challenge does not result in the original call on the

ice being overturned, the team exercising such challenge will forfeit its

time-out.

4. If the Coach’s Challenge does result in the call on the ice being

overturned, the team successfully exercising such challenge will retain

its time-out.

 

League Initiated Review

1. In the final minute of play in the 3rd Period and at any point in

Overtime (Regular Season and Playoffs), Hockey Operations will

initiate the review of any scenario that would otherwise be subject

to a Coach’s Challenge.

2. Hockey Operations will continue to initiate and be responsible for

the review of all goals subject to Video Review under Rule 38.4.

Where a Coach’s Challenge is available on a scoring play potentially

involving “Interference on the Goalkeeper” or “Off-Side,” Hockey

Operations will, as an initial and threshold matter, determine that

the puck entered the net and is a good hockey goal before the play

will be subject to further review by means of a Coach’s Challenge

(or, in the final minute of play or in Overtime, a review initiated

by Hockey Operations). If a team requests a Coach’s Challenge but

Video Review under Rule 38.4 renders such Challenge unnecessary, then

the Challenge will be deemed not to have been made and the timeout

will be preserved.

 

Additional Notes Regarding Scenarios Subject to Expanded Video Review

1. The League will make available in all arenas, technology

(either a handheld tablet or a television or computer monitor) that

will allow on-ice Officials, in conjunction with the Toronto Video

Room, to view replays if, and only to the extent, a formal Coach’s

Challenge has been initiated (or, in the final minute of play or in

Overtime, a review by Hockey Operations is initiated). To the extent

practical, the replays made available to the Officials on the ice

will be the same replays that are being utilized by the Toronto Video

Room.

2 Once a Challenge has been initiated (or, in the final minute of play

or in Overtime, a review is initiated by Hockey Operations), the

Toronto Video Room will immediately establish contact with the

Referee (or Linesman) responsible for the call on the ice via the

headset and will inquire and discuss with the Referee (or Linesman),

prior to the Referee (or Linesman) examining any video, the

following: (a) the Referee’s (or Linesman’s) “final” call on the ice;

and (b) what the Referee (or Linesman) observed on the play.

3. The on-ice call will then be reviewed simultaneously by the

appropriate on-ice Officials at ice level and by Hockey Operations in

the Toronto Video Room using any and all replays at their disposal.

After reviewing the play and consulting with the Toronto Video Room,

the appropriate on-ice Officials will then make the “final” decision

on whether to uphold or overturn the original call on the ice. Once

the decision is made, the Referee will inform the Penalty

Timekeeper/PA Announcer and will make the announcement on the ice.

Plays Potentially Involving An “Off-Side” Infraction

1. The standard for overturning the call in the event of a “GOAL” call

on the ice is that the Linesman, after reviewing any and all

available replays and consulting with the Toronto Video Room,

determines that one or more Players on the attacking team preceded

the puck into the attacking zone prior to the goal being scored and

that, as a result, the play should have been stopped for an

“Off-Side” infraction; where this standard is met, the goal will be

disallowed.

2. Goals will only be reviewed for a potential “Off-Side” infraction if:

(a) the puck does not come out of the attacking zone again; or (b)

all members of the attacking team do not clear the attacking zone

again, between the time of the “Off-Side” play and the time the goal

is scored.

3. In the event a goal is reversed due to the Linesman determining that

the play was “Off-Side” prior to the goal being scored, the clock

(including penalty time clocks, if applicable) will be re-set to the

time at which the play should have been stopped for the “Off-Side”

infraction.

Plays Potentially Involving “Interference on the Goalkeeper”

1. The standard for overturning the call in the event of a “GOAL” call

on the ice is that the Referee, after reviewing any and all available

replays and consulting with the Toronto Video Room, determines that

the goal should have been disallowed due to “Interference on the

Goalkeeper,” as described in Rules 69.1, 69.3 and 69.4.

2. The standard for overturning the call in the event of a “NO GOAL”

call on the ice is that the Referee, after reviewing any and all

replays and consulting with the Toronto Video Room, determines that

the goal on the ice should have been allowed because either: (i)

there was no actual contact of any kind initiated by the attacking

Player with the goalkeeper; or (ii) the attacking Player was pushed,

shoved or fouled by a defending Player causing the attacking Player

to come into contact with the goalkeeper; or (iii) the attacking

Player’s positioning within the crease did not impair the

goalkeeper’s ability to defend his goal and, in fact, had no

discernible impact on the play.

3. The Video Review process on these plays (whether initiated by way of

a Coach’s Challenge or by Hockey Operations in the final minute of

play or in Overtime) will be utilized exclusively for purposes of

confirming or overturning a “GOAL” or “NO GOAL” call on the ice on

scoring plays potentially involving “Interference on the Goalkeeper.”

The Video Review process on these plays -- regardless of its outcome

-- will not be utilized for any other purpose, including,

specifically, for assessing minor or major penalties for Goalkeeper

Interference.

 

Rule 76.4, Face-Offs – Paragraph 2

When the face-off takes place at any of the nine face-off spots, the

players taking part shall take their position so that they will stand

squarely facing their opponent’s end of the rink, and clear of the ice

markings (where applicable). The sticks of both players facing-off shall

have the blade on the ice, within the designated white area. At the eight

face-off spots (excluding center ice face-off spot), the defending player

shall place his stick within the designated white area first followed

immediately by the attacking player. When the face-off is conducted at the

center ice face-off spot, the visiting player shall place his stick on the

ice first.


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A decade of drafts: Part 2

Dave Molinari 1 week ago

The risks and rewards of drafting teenaged hockey players are numerous, and the Penguins, like most clubs, have experienced both in their annual effort to replenish the talent on their organizational depth chart.

In this two-part series, we’ve taken at look at every player the Penguins have chosen in the past 10 NHL drafts.

Here is Part 2, covering 2010-2014.

2010

Round 1 – RW Beau Bennett, Penticton (British Columbia Hockey League). Bennett has shown flashes of top-six talent, but injuries and inconsistency have prevented him from having the impact for which the Penguins were hoping.

Round 3 – RW Bryan Rust, U.S. national development team. A good skater who is reliable and responsible, Rust might be ready to contend for full-time work as a bottom-six forward in the NHL.

Round 4 – RW Tom Kuhnhackl. Landshut (Germany). Has not become the goal-scorer the Penguins projected him to be, but a serious shoulder injury impeded his development. He got a new contract Tuesday, so the team clearly isn’t ready to write him off.

Round 5 – LW Kenneth Agostino, Delbarton (N.J.) High School. Agostino, like fellow prospect Ben Hanowski, went to Calgary in the Jarome Iginla trade. He has played eight games for the Flames, and has a sound two-way game that could translate into steady work in the NHL someday.

Round 6 – D Joe Rogalski, Sarnia (Ontario Hockey League). Was viewed very much as a project when the Penguins claimed him, and the team opted against ever giving him a contract. He reportedly has given up the game.

Round 6 – D Reid McNeill, London (OHL). Although his skating is suspect, he plays a solid, physical, defensive style that could earn him a third-pairing job in the NHL at some point.

2011

Round 1 – D Joe Morrow, Portland (Western Hockey League). A lack of consistency has impeded his development into the two-way force the Penguins believed they were getting. Was traded to Dallas in the Brenden Morrow deal in 2013 and subsequently dealt to Boston.

Round 2 – D Scott Harrington, London (OHL). Probably never will be a fixture in the headlines or highlights, but might well grab a permanent spot on the Penguins’ NHL roster this fall.

Round 5 – C Dominik Uher, Spokane (WHL). Is a legitimate contender to fill a blue-collar role in the NHL within the next few seasons. Dressed for two games with the Penguins in 2014-15.

Round 6 – RW Josh Archibald, Brainerd (Minn.) High School. Competitive and a good skater, but will have to score on a more regular basis to force his way into the NHL.

Round 7 – LW Scott Wilson, Georgetown (Ontario juniors). Made his NHL debut last season, and has the talent and intangibles to carve out a fill-time niche in the league.

2012

Round 1 – D Derrick Pouliot, Portland (WHL). Probably the most highly regarded young player in the organization now and, despite some growing pains during his first 34 NHL appearances, should become an impact player at this level.

Round 1 – D Olli Maatta, London (OHL). Performs with a maturity and poise well beyond his 20 years. Missed most of last season because of cancer and a shoulder injury, but should step back into a top-four role on the Penguins’ defense this fall.

Round 2 – C Teddy Blueger, Shattuck-St. Mary’s prep school (Minn.). Versatile and offensively gifted, he will have to bulk up if he’s going to be effective after turning pro when his days as the No. 1 center at Minnesota State are over.

Round 3 – C Oskar Sundqvist, Skelleftea juniors (Sweden). Management seems cautiously optimistic that Sundqvist will be able to earn a job in the NHL this fall, although it’s possible he will end up Wilkes-Barre. No one, however, is ready to pencil him in immediately for the third-line center spot now held by Brandon Sutter.

Round 3 – G Matt Murray, Sault Ste. Marie (OHL). Murray was the American Hockey League’s top goalie in 2014-15, and will either back up Marc-Andre Fleury or again be the go-to goalie in Wilkes-Barre next season. Either way, he looks to have a prominent place in the Penguins’ long-term plans.

Round 4 – C Matia Marcantuoni, Kitchener (OHL). Fleet and feisty, he eventually might be able to grab a spot on the NHL as an agitator/energy guy.

Round 4 – G Sean Maguire, Powell (BCHL). He’s far enough down the goaltending depth chart that, at least for now, he’s a long shot to ever wear a Penguins sweater.

Round 5 – D Clark Seymour, Peterborough (OHL). Spent most of his first pro season with Wheeling (ECHL) and looks to be unlikely to get to the NHL, despite playing a physical, defensively responsible game.

Round 6 – LW Anton Zlobin, Shawinigan (Quebec Major Junior Hockey League). Although multiple shoulder injuries have impeded his development during his first two years as a pro, Zlobin’s skill level and knack for scoring goals in high-stakes games make him an intriguing prospect.

2013

Round 2 – G Tristan Jarry, Edmonton (Western Hockey League). The Penguins liked Jarry enough to trade up to in the draft to get him and he led Edmonton to the 2014 Memorial Cup, but he’s slipped behind Matt Murray on the organizational depth chart. That’s mostly because of Murray’s outstanding work, not any regression or flaw in Jarry’s game.

Round 3 – C Jake Guentzel, Sioux City (United States Hockey League). Size is a bit suspect, but he’s fast and skilled and has had two solid seasons at Nebraska-Omaha.

Round 4 – D Ryan Segalla, Salisbury (Conn.) High School. Hits hard and has shown a nasty edge to his game while playing at Connecticut, although he probably will have to add some bulk before turning pro.

Round 6 – D Dane Birks, Merritt (BCHL). A long-term project, by any measure, Birks has demonstrated elements of a solid two-way game. Just finished freshman year at Michigan Tech.

Round 6 – C Blaine Byron, Smith Falls (Central Canada Hockey League). Has shown himself to be a creative and versatile playmaker during his first two seasons at Maine.

Round 7 – C Troy Josephs, St. Michael’s (Ontario juniors). An effective forechecker who has filled a blue-collar role effectively at Clarkson, and figures to handle similar duties when he turns pro.

2014

Round 1 – RW Kasperi Kapanen, KalPa (Finland). It remains to be seen whether Kapanen is ready to fill a top-six niche during the coming season, but that’s the job he’s projected to handle when he locks down a spot in the NHL.

Round 4 – RW Sam Lafferty, Deerfield Academy (Mass.). A Hollidaysburg, Pa. native who’s attending Brown University, Lafferty’s best-case pro scenario appears to be as a solid two-way contributor.

Round 5 – C Anthony Angello, Omaha (USHL). Plays a rugged style that could translate well to the professional game if he progresses the way the Penguins hope.

Round 6 – RW Jaden Lindo, Owen Sound (OHL). A hard-hitting winger who projects as a bottom-six forward in the pros.

Round 7 – D Jeff Taylor, Union College (). His skating and offensive skills are good, but his modest size could be an issue eventually when he moves up to bigger, stronger competition.


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A decade of drafts: Part 1

Dave Molinari 1 week ago

Drafting teenaged hockey players is a most imprecise science, as evidenced by how many can’t-miss prospects have done just that over the years.

Nonetheless, the annual infusion of prospects that the NHL draft provides is critical to keeping a team competitive for the long term. Mistakes in evaluating young players are inevitable, but making too many can create holes in a team’s depth chart for years.

In this two-part series, we will take at look at every player the Penguins have chosen in the past 10 NHL drafts.

Here is Part 1, covering 2005-2009.

2005

Round 1 – C Sidney Crosby, Rimouski (Quebec Major Junior Hockey League). Was touted as a potential franchise cornerstone long before the Penguins won a league-wide lottery to get him. Despite a series of major lost-time injuries, he has largely lived up to those rarefied expectations.

Round 2 – D Michael Gergen, Shattuck-St. Mary’s prep school (Minn.). Never made it past the East Coast Hockey League after spending four years at Minnesota –Duluth.

Round 3 – D Kris Letang, Val d’IR (QMJHL). Despite several serious health issues, ranging from a stroke to multiple concussions, he has become one of the top defensemen in the NHL and is an important piece of the Penguins’ core.

Round 4 – D Tommi Leinonen, Karpat Jrs. (Finland). Has never played outside of Europe.

Round 5 – RW Tim Crowder, Surrey (British Columbia Hockey League). Never made it past the ECHL after spending four years at Michigan State.

Round 6 – D Jean-Philipp Paquet, Shawinigan (QMJHL). Career peaked when he played 39 games for St. Georges Cool 103.5 FM in the North American Hockey League.

Round 7 – C Joe Vitale, Sioux Falls (United States Hockey League). Put in three-plus seasons with the Penguins, mostly as a fourth-line center, before signing with Arizona as a free agent a year ago.

2006

Round 1 – C Jordan Staal, Peterborough (Ontario Hockey League). Was projected as a strong defensive presence who could complement Crosby and Evgeni Malkin as a No. 3 center, and filled that niche well before being traded to Carolina in 2012.

Round 2 – D Carl Sneep, Brainerd (Minn.) High School. Appeared in just one NHL game, with the Penguins in 2011-12, after attending Boston College.

Round 3 – D Brian Strait, U.S. national under-18 team. Is a depth defenseman with the New York Islanders, who acquired from him from Penguins on waivers in 2012.

Round 5 – G Chad Johnson, Alaska-Fairbanks (Central Collegiate Hockey Assoc.). Has made it into 56 NHL games with the New York Rangers, Phoenix, Boston and the Islanders.

Round 7 – D Timo Seppanen, Helsinki (Finland SM-liiga). Spent his entire career in Finland, except for one year in Sweden.

2007

Round 1 – C Angelo Esposito, Quebec (QMJHL). Once the top-ranked prospect in his draft class, he ultimately slipped to the Penguins at No. 20 overall. Their gamble on him didn’t pay off, but they cut their losses by including him in the 2008 trade that brought Marian Hossa and Pascal Dupuis from Atlanta.

Round 2 – C Keven Veilleux, Victoriaville (QMJHL). Veilleux had impressive size, but never come close to realizing his potential, in part because of a serious knee injury.

Round 3 – D Robert Bortuzzo, Kitchener (OHL). He developed into a solid third-pairing defensive defenseman before being traded to St. Louis for Ian Cole late in the 2014-15 season.

Round 3 – LW Casey Pierro-Zabotel, Merritt (BCHL). The Penguins thought he was a dark horse candidate to mature into an impact player as a pro. His next NHL game will be his first.

Round 4 – LW Luca Caputi, Mississauga (OHL). Caputi showed power-forward potential early in his pro career, and some were surprised when he was included in a trade that brought Alexei Ponikarovsky from Toronto. Turned out to be a deal that did little for either team.

Round 4 – D Alex Grant, Saint John (QMJHL). A prospects-tournament injury impeded his development, and he made his only two NHL appearances for Anaheim in 2013-14. Is now in Ottawa’s organization.

Round 5 – D Jake Muzzin, Sault Ste. Marie (OHL). A serious back problem caused his pre-draft stock to plummet, and the Penguins eventually decided it might well prevent him from getting to the NHL. They were wrong, and he won a Stanley Cup in Los Angeles last year.

Round 6 – C Dustin Jeffrey, Sault Ste. Marie (OHL). A role player capable of playing any forward position, he has logged 124 NHL games, the first 100 of them with the Penguins. Now part of the New York Islanders’ organization.

2008

Round 4 – C Nathan Moon, Kingston (OHL). The highlight of his pro career likely was seven playoff games with the Bossier-Shreveport Mudbugs of the Central Hockey League in 2011.

Round 5 – G Alexandre Pechurski, Magnitogorsk Jrs. (Russia). Was pressed into emergency service during a Penguins game in Vancouver in 2010-11, stopping 12 of 13 shots in his only NHL appearance.

Round 6 – G Patrick Killeen, Brampton (OHL). Kicked around the minor leagues for three years before playing college hockey in Canada last winter.

Round 7 – D Nicholas D’Agostino, St. Michael’s (Ontario Junior League). Plays a decent two-way game and has spent most of the past two seasons with the Penguins’ farm team in Wilkes-Barre after attending Cornell.

2009

Round 1 – D Simon Despres, Saint John (QMJHL). Still a work-in-progress, but Despres has the skills set to fill a top-four role. General manager Jim Rutherford already has expressed regret about trading him to Anaheim for Ben Lovejoy earlier this year.

Round 2 – D Philip Samuelsson, Chicago (USHL). Has the potential to land steady work in the NHL at some point, but the Penguins’ defensive depth made him expendable and he went to Arizona in the Rob Klinkhammer trade last season.

Round 3 – RW Ben Hanowski, Little Falls (Minn.) High School. Was a prolific goal-scorer in high school, but has yet to show that touch as a pro. Has played 16 games for Calgary, which acquired him in the Jarome Iginla trade in 2013.

Round 4 – RW Nick Petersen, Shawinigan (QMJHL). Spent the better part of three seasons in the minors, mostly the American Hockey League, before heading to Germany. Played for the Iserlohn Roosters in 2014-15.

Round 5 – D Alex Velischek, Delbarton (N.J.) High School. The son of former NHLer Randy Velischek, he’s knocked around the lower minors since leaving Providence College.

Round 5 – LW Andy Bathgate, Belleville (OHL). Great bloodlines – he’s the grandson of Hall of Famer Andy Bathgate – are his only connection to the NHL. He’s another who has bounced around the lower minors since turning pro.

Round 6 – D Viktor Ekbom, Oskarshamn (Sweden). Aside from three forgettable games in Wilkes-Barre in 2010-11, he has not played outside of Europe, and there’s no reason to believe that will change.

Sidney Crosby, Kris Letang and Nicholas D’Agostino are the only players from these five draft classes who remain in the organization.


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