Congratulations to the Chicago Blackhawks for winning the 2013 Stanley Cup.

Congratulations to Conn Smythe Trophy winner Patrick Kane.


- The NHL Players Overseas for Lockout list is current as of 2:35 PM January 6, 2013.

- The 2012 Free Agents list and 2012 Free Agent Signings list are current as of 2:35 PM January 6, 2013.

- The 2011 Free Agents list and 2011 Free Agent Signings list are current as of 1:09 PM June 16, 2012.

- The Atlanta Thrashers have been re-designated Winnipeg on the 2011 Free Agents list. Any signings that were completed prior to May 31, 2011 will be listed as "Atlanta/Winnipeg." Any signings completed after May 31, 2011 will be listed as "Winnipeg."

- The 2010 Free Agents list and 2010 Free Agent Signings list are current as of 11:34 PM May 20, 2011.

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Wednesday, December 31, 2008

Canucks Acquire Goaltender Labarbera from Kings

The Vancouver Canucks announced on Wednesday that they have acquired goaltender Jason Labarbera from the Los Angeles Kings in exchange for the Canucks' 7th round pick in the 2009 Entry Draft. The trade comes in the wake of a groin injury to backup goaltender Curtis Sanford, who was placed on the injured list after Tuesday nights 3-2 loss at home to the Philadelphia Flyers. Canucks starter Roberto Luongo has been on the injured list with a groin injury since November 23, but has been skating with the team in practices recently. However, Luongo is not expected to return for at least three more weeks. With prospect Cory Schneider already up with the team and insufficient goaltending depth on their minor league teams, a trade for an experienced goaltender was a must for the Canucks. Labarbera had recently become expendable to the Kings given the improved play of rookie Jonathan Quick and the return of Erik Ersberg from injury. So far this season, Labarbera has gone 5-8-4 with a 2.83 goals-against-average and .893 save percentage with two shutouts in 18 games. Labarbera has struggled in net the past couple of seasons in Los Angeles due in large part to the Kings' porous defense. He has the skills to be a decent goaltender and likely just needed a change of scenery in order to further those skills. Labarbera will be a good fill-in goaltender for the Canucks until Luongo and Sanford return from injury and could see an improvement in his game playing behind a stronger defense.

Sharks Sign Claude Lemieux to Two-Way Contract

Claude Lemieux is one step closer to returning to the NHL. The San Jose Sharks announced on Monday that they have signed the 43-year-old right wing to a one-year, two-way contract. Terms of the deal were not disclosed. Lemieux has not played in the NHL since the 2002-03 season when he was with the Dallas Stars. He has been attempting an NHL comeback over the last few months and has been playing with the Sharks' AHL affiliate in Worcester. In 14 AHL games, Lemieux has two goals and four assists for six points. He has played in 1197 games, scoring 379 goals and 406 assists for 785 points with the Montreal Canadiens, New Jersey Devils, Colorado Avalanche, Phoenix Coyotes, and Dallas Stars. In Doug Wilson's eyes, he feels Lemieux has conditioned and played well enough at the minor league level to warrant signing him to an NHL contract. Throughout his NHL career, Lemieux was a pest and agitator, and will likely play the same role if is able to make the Sharks' roster. Given his age, Lemieux will likely play a limited role on the team's checking line and probably will not see any time on the scoring lines. Given his past success in the playoffs, Lemieux could play a bigger role on the team in the playoffs.

Saturday, December 20, 2008

Penguins Sign Center Talbot to Two-Year Extension

The Pittsburgh Penguins announced on Friday that they have signed center Maxime Talbot to a two-year contract extension. He will earn $1,050,000 per season. He would have been eligible for restricted free agency this coming summer. So far this season, Talbot has four goals and three assists for seven points and 18 penalty minutes in 28 games. This is a decent move by the Penguins, as Talbot played an important role in the team reaching the 2008 Stanley Cup Finals. He has decent offensive skills and good toughness with the potential to be a scoring center. Talbot will be an important part of the Penguins' success over the next two seasons.

Blues Acquire Forward Filewich from Penguins

The St. Louis Blues announced on Friday that they have acquired right wing Jonathan Filewich from the Pittsburgh Penguins in exchange for a conditional 6th round pick in the 2010 Entry Draft. Filewich played in five games for the Penguins last season, scoring no points. He has not played in the NHL yet this season, but had two goals and two assists for four points in 19 games with the Penguins AHL affiliate, the Wilkes-Barre/Scranton Penguins. He will report to the Blues' AHL affiliate in Peoria. The Blues have chose to rebuild their team through the draft and affordable depth signings rather than make any earth-shattering trades or high-profile free agent signings. Filewich has the potential to be a decent forward, but will have to improve his play at the minor-league level if he has any hopes of playing for the Blues. If he can improve his play, he could be a great addition for the Blues.

Friday, December 19, 2008

Free Agent Center Sundin Signs with Canucks

The Mats Sundin sweepstakes is finally over. On Thursday, the free agent center agreed to a one-year contract with the Vancouver Canucks. Terms of the deal were not disclosed, but it's believed to be worth approximately $10 million. The Canucks had offered Sundin a two-year contract worth $10 million per season over the summer, but he turned down the deal to contemplate his future. The Montreal Canadiens, Chicago Blackhawks, Philadelphia Flyers, Ottawa Senators, Toronto Maple Leafs, and New York Rangers were all believed interested in Sundin over the past several months. Last season with the Maple Leafs, Sundin played in 74 games, scoring 32 goals and 46 assists for 78 points. He is the Maple Leafs' all-time leader in goals and points. It's good to finally see all the speculation come to an end. Sundin had his choices narrowed down to the Rangers and Canucks, and it made little sense for the Rangers to sign Sundin, as they would have had to clear salary to make room for Sundin. Plus, the Rangers have plenty of depth on their forward lines and are currently struggling on the blueline, so they would be better off addressing their struggling defense than adding a forward. Prior to the start of the season, it was predicted the Canucks would struggle offensively given the subtractions of Markus Naslund and Brendan Morrison over the summer and their overall lack of veteran depth on their forward lines. The Canucks surprised everyone by jumping out to a quick start and getting plenty of goals from their young forwards. By adding Sundin, the Canucks have further bolstered their strong offense and his experience should help the team finish the season at the top of the Northwest Division. As for being a Stanley Cup contender after the addition of Sundin, they are still far from it. Sure Sundin adds a wealth of talent to the Canucks' offense, but they could still use a little more depth and veteran experience to their offense to help them in the playoffs. Plus, if the Canucks are looking to go deep in the playoffs, Roberto Luongo will have to be at perfect help, otherwise Curtis Sanford's lack of playoff experience could spell an early exit.

Lacouture Leaves Hurricanes for KHL?

According to, Carolina Hurricanes left wing Dan Lacouture is believed to have left the team for Russia to play in the Kontinental Hockey League (KHL). The Hurricanes are not sure which team Lacouture intends to sign with, but will suspend him if he signs in the KHL. Lacouture signed a one-year contract with the Hurricanes in October after being invited to their training camp on a tryout basis. In 11 games so far this season, Lacouture has two goals. He has been playing in the Hurricanes' AHL affiliate, the Albany River Rats, since November 4. If Lacouture does indeed sign in the KHL, it will fuel the feud between them and the NHL, with the KHL abandoning its policy of honoring players already under NHL contracts. Lacouture is a marginal player at best, so the NHL should not feel too threatened by his defection to the KHL. The best players the KHL has lured over to Russia are Jaromir Jagr and Alexander Radulov, with the rest being 4th line and marginal players. If the KHL continues to attract sub-par talent to their league, they will never be a serious threat to the NHL.

Monday, December 15, 2008

Stars Acquire Sutherby from Ducks

The Dallas Stars announced on Sunday that they have acquired center Brian Sutherby from the Anaheim Ducks in exchange for the rights to center David McIntyre and a conditional sixth round draft pick in the 2010 Entry Draft. So far this season, Sutherby has played in 17 games, scoring three goals and three assists for six points. He has missed the last 10 games with a groin strain, but had been recently skating with the Ducks. McIntyre has not been signed to an NHL contract yet and is currently playing with the Colgate Raiders at Colgate University. He currently has five goals and seven assists for 12 points in 14 games. The Stars are currently a bit depleted on their forward ranks, with injuries to Brendan Morrow, Jere Lehtinen, Steve Ott, and Joel Lundqvist, and the suspension of Sean Avery. Acquiring Sutherby gives them some depth and veteran experience to their injury-ravaged offense. Sutherby saw little playing time with the Ducks when he was healthy, often playing on their 4th line, and looked as if he was expendable to the team. It also helps the Ducks free up a little bit of cap space which they could use near the trade deadline if they feel the need to add a depth player to the team going into the playoffs.

Tuesday, December 9, 2008

Vrbata Heading for the Czech Republic

The Tampa Bay Lightning announced on Tuesday that right wing Radim Vrbata is leaving the team to play in the Czech Republic. The Lightning placed Vrbata on waivers on Monday with the intent of assigning to the Czech Republic after he requested to be assigned there to work on his game. Vrbata, who signed a three-year, $9 million contract this past summer, will not have his salary count against the Lightning's salary cap for the rest of the season, but they will still have to pay him. The contract will however remain in force for the second and third years if he returns to the NHL. Vrbata had a career season in 2007-08 with the Phoenix Coyotes, scoring 27 goals and 29 assists for 56 points in 76 games. This season, he has struggled mightily with three goals and three assists for six points in 18 games. In 440 games, Vrbata has 105 goals and 127 assists for 232 points with the Colorado Avalanche, Carolina Hurricanes, Chicago Blackhawks, Phoenix Coyotes, and Tampa Bay Lightning. Vrbata still has the potential to be a top-six winger, so some time away from the Lightning may be what he needs to get his career back on track. If he cannot resurrect his career in Europe, expect to see the Lightning attempt to trade him next summer. However, if Vrbata struggles in Europe, the Lightning likely won't be able to trade him and may have to send him back to Europe, bury him in the minors, or buyout his contract.

Blackhawks Acquire Defenseman Sharrow from Canucks

The Chicago Blackhawks announced on Tuesday that they have acquired minor league defenseman James Sharrow from the Vancouver Canucks in exchange for a conditional draft pick in the 2009 Entry Draft. Sharrow has yet to play in an NHL game. He was originally drafted in the 4th round, 110th overall in 2003 by the Atlanta Thrashers. The Canucks acquired Sharrow in June 2007 from the Thrashers for Jesse Schultz. Sharrow likely won't see any time with the Blackhawks this season, but could definitely make the team in the next couple of seasons if he is retained for that long. Sharrow has the potential to become a decent offensive defenseman, so this trade could end up being a steal for the Blackhawks.

Wednesday, December 3, 2008

Coyotes Acquire Lindstrom from Ducks

The Phoenix Coyotes announced on Wednesday that they have acquired right wing Joakim Lindstrom from the Anaheim Ducks in exchange for defenseman Logan Stephenson. Lindstrom was acquired by the Ducks this past summer from the Columbus Blue Jackets for a conditional draft pick. Last season, Lindstrom appeared in 25 games with the Blue Jackets, scoring three goals and four assists for seven points. He has not appeared in any NHL games so far this season. Stephenson was drafted by the Coyotes in the 2nd round, 35th overall, of the 2004 Entry Draft. He has yet to play a game in the NHL. The trade is a minor one at best, with the Coyotes looking to add depth at forward to minor league affiliate and the Ducks defensive depth. Both players likely won't see any NHL action this season unless their is a long-term injury on their respected teams.

Hurricanes Fire Head Coach Laviolette

The Carolina Hurricanes fired head coach Peter Laviolette on Wednesday and have replaced him with former Hurricanes coach Paul Maurice. The move comes after weeks of speculation of change in Carolina. Rumors began this past summer that Laviolette would get fired due to the team's lack on consistency with him at the helm. Laviolette was hired by the team in 2003 after Maurice had been fired halfway through the 2003-04 season. Laviolette guided the Hurricanes to a Stanley Cup championship in 2006, but the team has missed the playoffs the past two seasons. While Laviolette was a bit inconsistent at times while coaching the Hurricanes, one cannot completely blame him for the team's woes the past two seasons. The Hurricanes have been challenged by injuries to star players in recent seasons, which has kept their performance at average. All of the Hurricanes' problems should not be solely blamed on Laviolette's coaching, as they have not had a very healthy roster over the past few seasons. Maurice, who had been fired by the Toronto Maple Leafs last summer, should be a decent fit for the Hurricanes as he is familiar with the organization. Maurice's no-nonsense coaching style might be able to spark the Hurricanes, but his average coaching record throughout his career could also keep the team from improving.

Avery Suspended Indefinitely by the NHL

Dallas Stars forward Sean Avery has been suspended indefinitely by the NHL for a derogatory comment made toward the girlfriend of Calgary Flames' defenseman Dion Phaneuf on December 2, 2008. Avery made the comment on camera following the Stars' practice and just hours before the Stars and Flames were to play each other in Calgary. The comment Avery made appeared to have been premeditated, as he tried to hold back a smile and keep from laughing while he spoke. The Stars organization is so thoroughly disgusted with the comment that they are on the verge of cutting ties with Avery. The team signed him to a four-year contract this past summer. NHL commissioner Gary Bettman and league disciplinarian Colin Campbell will hold a hearing in New York with Avery to determine a suspension on Thursday. Avery attempted to issue an apology to his teammates and the Stars' organization through the organization on Wednesday, but was rejected by the team. He issued an apology that was not sanctioned by the team on Wednesday, though. Avery has been the center of controversy since his rookie season in 2001-02. He has had verbal confrontations with fans and players on an off the ice, including racial slurs and derogatory comments about Jason Blake's bout with Leukemia, as well as giving a New York cameraman the middle finger last season. The comment by Avery shows how classless he really is. He has completely embarrassed himself, his team and teammates, and the whole league through his distasteful words and should be completely ashamed of what he said. He's nothing but a clown who likes to run his big mouth just to get attention. There is no place in the NHL for Avery's childish antics and the league needs to come down hard on him or he will continue to run his mouth. If the league punishes Avery harshly, it will teach him a lesson for being such an ass.