Kukla's Korner Hockey
Entries with the tag: brian gionta
from Time Warner Cable News Buffalo,
Brian Gionta was back on home turf Monday night, signing autographs at Frontier Field one month after signing a three-year contract with the Buffalo Sabres.
After more than 17 years away from home, the Greece native is glad to be back playing hockey in his neck of the woods.
"We’re excited about it,” Gionta said. “It’s something we’ve been trying to do for quite some time. We love the area. We spend time here during the summers. My wife and I are both from here so to be back closer to home, closer to family and friends, it’s special to us.”
MONTREAL – Montreal Canadiens General Manager Pierre Gauthier issued Wednesday a medical update on the status of forward Brian Gionta.
Gionta underwent successful surgery to repair a tear in the right biceps. He will be out indefinitely. The surgery was performed earlier today in Montreal.
The Canadiens’ captain suffered the injury during the third period of last night’s game against the St. Louis Blues.
Brian Gionta of the Canadiens received two minutes for interference on the goaltender.
James Reimer did finish the period but was replaced by Jonas Gustavsson at the start of the second.
Many expected the Montreal Canadiens to be somewhat lackluster on Tuesday night, perhaps downtrodden due to the long absence that appears to be ahead for their best defenceman, Andrei Markov. But give the Canadiens credit, they brought their best game to the Bell Centre, defeating the Philadelphia Flyers 3-0 in their first meeting since last spring’s heartbreaking playoff defeat.
Carey Price picked up where he left off against Carolina on Saturday night, making several highlight reel saves in leading the Habs to their fourth straight victory. Seriously folks, some of these were phenomenal. He has really turned a corner. And how about that, three shutouts this season for Carey Price, who previously got shutouts on a frequency comparable to appearances by Haley’s Comet. This level of goaltending is something Montreal hockey fans have not seen from Carey Price. He was good in 2008, but this is better. Carey Price is for real.
The Montreal Canadiens wrapped up the weekend with a 3-1 loss to the Florida Panthers on Saturday night. The Habs were playing their third game in four nights and looked the part, wearing down fairly early and fading as the third period went on.
However, more important than the outcome for most Habs fans was the return of Andrei Markov. The best defenceman in Montreal returned Saturday to record five shots but was unable to get on the scoresheet as he was eased back into the lineup. Markov was paired with PK Subban, playing an impressive 23:03 in his return.
Second line blues
Montreal has had a good start to the year, but their major challenge continues to be a lack of secondary scoring. Namely, second line scoring, in that Scott Gomez and Brian Gionta have been virtually invisible when it comes to offence. Gionta is perhaps the most snake bitten player in the NHL this year, having scored only once on forty-four shots.
HNIC opening tonight…
Brian Gionta is the 28th captain of your Montreal Canadiens, becoming the second American captain in the team’s 101 year history. Chris Chelios, who co-captained the team in 1989, was the first.
Hal Gill and Andrei Markov will remain assistant captains.
That so many names were bandied about by the media is a sign of the leadership and experience in the locker room. But any way you look at it, Gionta is a great choice.
As you’ve probably heard by now, François Gagnon of La Presse exclusively broke the story late last week that Brian Gionta was to be named the 28th captain of the Montreal Canadiens. While I don’t doubt the veritability of the news there is still no official announcement from the Habs, and they insist a decision still has yet to be made. If it is Gionta, it will be the safe choice, the expected choice and a good choice. A quiet leader who excels in big game situations, Gionta is respected by his teammates and willing to take the team on his back. That said, such a decision will be a disappointment to some who hoped that veteran rearguard Andrei Markov would get the nod, given his tenure with the Canadiens and his own ability to lead through on ice performance.
from John McGourty of NHL.com,
Brian Gionta and Scott Gomez were hoping they still had the chemistry that made them Stanley Cup winners in 2003 with the New Jersey Devils and produced a 48-goal season by Gionta in 2006.
It was there Saturday night in Buffalo when the Canadiens won their second-straight overtime game, 2-1, on Gionta’s tip in past goalie Ryan Miller. It was an airborne rebound off the boards of Gomez’s shot.
“That wasn’t the way we drew it up, but we’ll take it,” Gionta said. “I was going to the net trying to find it and it bounced real nice for me. Any time a wrist shot goes off the back boards, there’s a little bit of luck.”
from Sean Gordon of French Impression at the Globe and Mail,
Jacques Martin has consistently praised Gionta’s attitude and work ethic, he’s combative (last night he got up in Geno Malkin’s grille after a bit of a sneaky elbow behind the net) and he can obviously still put the puck in the net.
I say what the hell, give him the “C”.
Until he starts sucking, at which point the experts and open-mouth shows can start chewing on his bones.
But something tells me that’s not going to happen.
from Tom Gulitti of Fire & Ice,
After not having any contact with the Devils since the end of the regular season, Gionta’s agent, Steve Bartlett said today that he’s had “a few casual conversations” with general manager Lou Lamoriello in the last week.
“I think everyone is on the same page in that there certainly is mutual interest and respect from both parties to get something done, but also an acknowledgement that that might not be possible to do so before July 1 for a lot of reasons,” Bartlett said.
The biggest is the salary cap. Teams were able to finally start budgeting their payroll for the 2009-10 season after it was announced on Friday that the salary cap will be $56.8 million.
Although Lamoriello has been trying to re-sign defenseman Johnny Oduya before he hits the open market and also has been working on a new deal for restricted free agent center Travis Zajac, re-signing Gionta apparently falls a little farther down the team’s list of priorities.
from Rich Chere of the Star-Ledger,
Brian Gionta wants to continue playing for the Devils, but he wonders whether the team will have enough cap space to keep him.
Gionta, who earned $4 million last season as part of a three-year, $12 million deal he signed in 2006, told me on Tuesday there has been no communication with general manager Lou Lamoriello. He becomes an unrestricted free agent July 1.
“We have not touched base at all yet,” Gionta said. “I don’t think it’s surprising because of the cap situation this year. The cap isn’t set and no one knows where it’s going to go. Teams don’t know what they have to work with.
“The problem is the cap will be determined late this year.”
from the NY Post,
Opposing scouts, who may be shopping for trade-deadline bargains, claim Gionta’s struggle this season is the result of the loss of the tip-bait Brian Rafalski used to send his way. It doesn’t explain last season, and Gionta doesn’t clutch that crutch.
Gionta offers no remedy, just the desire to help the Devils any way he can, even if goals are scarce.
“Even when I was scoring, it was doing things I could do to help the team win,” Gionta said. “When the team’s not winning you feel more pressure.”
He said he doesn’t feel he’s been helping enough.