Kukla's Korner Hockey
via Wes Gilbertson of the Calgary Sun,
Flames D Dennis Wideman suffered an upper-body injury during the opening stanza — he collided with Colborne as Frolik was scoring Calgary’s second goal — and did not return. In his post-game presser, Hartley told reporters “the preliminary reports that we got from the medical staff are not very good.” Wideman will have further medical testing Thursday.
The NHL and NHLPA released a multi-page PDF explaining the ruling from the arbitrator, so here is the basic information you need to know.
NEW YORK (March 11, 2016) – The National Hockey League released the following statement today regarding the decision in the appeal of Calgary Flames defenseman Dennis Wideman’s 20-game suspension:
“We are in receipt of Arbitrator James Oldham’s Opinion in the appeal of Dennis Wideman’s supplementary discipline suspension and reducing the suspension from 20 to 10 games. We strenuously disagree with the Arbitrator’s ruling and are reviewing the Opinion in detail to determine what next steps may be appropriate. We will have no further comment until we have completed our review. In light of and in response to Arbitrator Oldham’s Opinion, Mr. Wideman will be reinstated and will be eligible to participate in his team’s games, effective immediately.”
from Eric Francis of the Calgary Sun,
Being suspended for six weeks, denigrated by countless fans and scribes, fined half a million dollars and having an embarrassing personal text exposed to the world will do that to a man.
“It’s been tough,” admitted Wideman, exactly 42 days after he crosschecked linesman Don Henderson to draw a 20-game suspension.
“It’s been a long time. It’s been a long process. You try to deal with it and stay as positive as I can be, especially when I’m around the guys. But no, it’s been difficult.
“There’s some times I’m pretty frustrated and there’s other times I understand that this takes a while and there’s a lot that goes into it.”
And still, six weeks after the fact, no final ruling on his second appeal....
The only thing everyone will agree on once this highly controversial journey ends is that it took far too long.
That has to change.
Wednesday’s visit to Calgary by the Predators marked the 19th game Wideman has missed due to his transgression.
The public relations nightmare that would follow a reduction in the defenceman’s sentence would turn this regrettable dance into yet another punchline.
from Eric Francis of the Calgary Sun,
With 215 NHL games under his belt in a pressure-cooker like Toronto, Reimer definitely fits the bill.
He’s a humble kid from small-town Manitoba whose path to the NHL included three years as a Red Deer Rebel as well as stints in the East Coast league and the AHL before platooning with the Leafs for six years.
He insists he was surprised the Leafs traded him Feb. 27 as he was in the midst of preliminary trade talks when it happened.
Clearly now isn’t the time the 27-year-old wants to be talking about his options as an unrestricted free agent this summer as he’s trying to establish himself behind Jones in a new town for the balance of the season.
However, he does admit this summer will be an exciting one for him.
“Totally — I’ve never been through this in my career and it will an interesting experience,” said Reimer, insisting he’ll go into the process with an open mind.
“As far as teams being off the table, not really. You just want an opportunity to play and lead a team. That’s the dream, right?”
from Kristen Odland of the Calgary Herald,
The 28-year-old defender has been the subject of trade speculation for weeks and, with the National Hockey League trade deadline on Monday, the rumours have been picking up steam.
According to TSN analyst Darren Dreger, the team apparently informed Russell that he is likely to be traded with the Pittsburgh Penguins and Boston Bruins as the front-runners.
The hard-working, shot-blocking blueliner has been dealing with a lower body (read: groin) injury and has missed the last six games. He skated in the morning on Thursday and was deemed good to go for Calgary’s game against the New York Islanders. But instead he was a last-minutes scratch for the 2-1 overtime loss.
Head coach Bob Hartley said it was the result of the nagging injury.
But the whole ordeal had local media wondering (and checking their phones).
“When we sat with him, right away we knew,” Hartley said. “Usually he doesn’t wants to talk about injuries … but just in the way he was answering our questions. I cut it short and said ‘You’re not playing.’ Just because I knew he wasn’t 100 per cent. There is no sense on putting him out there. It’s just a nagging injury that’s getting better.”
from Scott Cruickshank of the Calgary Herald,
As much as No. 5 credits the Flames for his good future, consider him self-made.
Not only a prime-time presence on the ice, he is an inspirational figure in the dressing room.
Lots to like.
Especially this weekend if you’re a rival general manager, because before Giordano cracks open a six-year deal ($6.75 million per) in 2016-17, he is unsheltered by no-trade or -movement clauses.
Surely, there have been overtures.
Treliving, if he’s doing his job, listens. (Imagine the pitches, the riches, that Giordano’s services would fetch.)
Then he politely says no, thank you.
Because – even with the spectre of Iginla’s detrimentally too-long term haunting the house – the Flames need Giordano here.
For now, anyway.
added 5:02pm, Vancouver and Calgary releases are below...
from Larry Brooks of the New York Post,
There is nothing more hysterical than the wailing of Calgary president Brian Burke over the handling and outcome of Dennis Wideman’s appeal to Gary Bettman following a process that, as designed and negotiated by the league owners through the legal muscle of lockouts (plural), is heavily weighted toward the league.
“Rubber-stamped,” the fuming executive categorized the decision in a radio interview after the commissioner upheld the NHL’s original 20-game sentence to the defenseman for plowing over and cross-checking linesman Don Henderson.
No doubt Burke also was shocked to discover the gambling at Rick’s Café.
Pierre LeBrun of ESPN looks at the Pacific Division at the trade deadline...
Sell, sell, sell. That's where Flames GM Brad Treliving has to focus on now that the playoffs look very remote. That means getting the most you can for Russell and pending UFA winger Jiri Hudler.
Russell could fetch the most among rental blue-liners, not only because he's a good player, but also because his $2.6 million cap hit is an easier fit for other teams to fit than many rental players.
Pending UFA winger David Jones could also be moved.
At some point, whether it's before the deadline or in the offseason, the Flames also have to figure out their goaltending situation. Both Karri Ramo and Jonas Hiller are unrestricted free agents on July 1, and I think the Flames need to look elsewhere for a long-term solution.
more on all the Pacific teams plus Brian Burke on the deadline...
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