Kukla's Korner Hockey
Entries with the tag: sergei gonchar
From mid-August onward, the free agents remaining on the market tend to start signing either short-term deals or agree to pro try-outs--and with the NHL's teams "capped out" in large part due to the almost-flat salary cap, and the Columbus Dispatch's Aaron Portzline notes that there are still some solid free agents out there:
-- Veteran defenseman Sergei Gonchar will attend camp with the Pittsburgh Penguins on a professional tryout offer. That's the best the 41-year-old could do. You wonder if other established NHL players might go the similar route. It's a bit of a gamble -- take the low-ball offers on the table now, or go to somebody camp without a contract, wait for the inevitable injuries to crop up around the league, and sign a deal that's right. Among the NHL players still out there: forwards Daniel Briere, Curtis Glencross, Stephen Weiss, Martin Erat, Martin Havlat, Brenden Morrow, Daniel Cleary, Olli Jokinen, Tomas Fleishmann, Erik Cole, Michael Ryder, B.J. Crombeen, Jiri Tlusty, Sean Bergenheim, Tyler Kennedy, Marcel Goc and Scottie Upshall, and defenseman Cody Franson, Jan Hejda, Andrej Meszaros, Marek Zidlicky, Bryan Allen, Eric Brewer, Michal Roszival, John Erskine, Keith Ballard, Tim Gleason and David Schlemko.
-- What would you think of this club?
F1: Curtis Glencross – Steppen Weiss - Daniel Briere
F2: Martin Havlat – Olli Jokinen – Michael Ryder
F3: Martin Erat – Tomas Fleischmann – Brenden Morrow
F4: Erik Cole – Marcel Goc - B.J. Crombeen
extras: Tyler Kennedy, Jiri Tlusty
D1: Christian Ehrhoff – Andrej Meszaros
D2: Jan Hejda – Cody Franson
D3: Tim Gleason – Marek Zidlicky
extra: John Erskine
G1: Josh Harding
G2: Jonas Gustavsson
G3: Ray Emery
OK, you've got some goaltending issues. And, yes, this group would look a lot better, say, in 2008-09 than it does now. But that, friends, is the the current all-UFA team. How many games does that team win?
Filed in: | KK Hockey | Permalink
Tags: andrej+meszaros, b.j.+crombeen, brenden+morrow, bryan+allen, cody+franson, curtis+glencross, daniel+briere, daniel+cleary, erik+cole, jan+hejda, jiri+tlusty, jonas+gustavsson, josh+harding, marcel+goc, marek+zidlicky, martin+erat, martin+havlat, michael+ryder, michal+roszival, olli+jokinen, ray+emery, scottie+upshall, sean+bergenheim, sergei+gonchar, stephen+weiss, tomas+fleischmann, tyler+kennedy
This is interesting...
Update: It's official:
from Rob Rossi of the Pittsburgh Tribune-Review,
Nobody from the Penguins was in their hotel lobby when Sergei Gonchar showed up to greet members of his inner circle Friday afternoon.
Hardly a missed opportunity, however. General manager Jim Rutherford already had heard from agent J.P. Barry that Gonchar prefers to play a final NHL season with the Penguins.
What Rutherford needs to hear — Bill Guerin could tell him — is what Sidney Crosby and Evgeni Malkin can't do despite all their other otherworldly talents.
The franchise centers can't do everything.
And Gonchar could help ease their burden of leadership, which might free Crosby and Malkin to dominate together like they haven't since their “Sarge” helped run the Penguins' room.
As a calming presence, Gonchar would prove priceless even at a $1 million hit. But for the Penguins, the best part about a potential reunion with Gonchar would be the cost.
He might not cost anything. His affinity for the franchise is so strong that he would walk away from any deal if his performance slipped below standard.
Gonchar has accepted his limitations as a 41-year-old with 1,442 games of wear on his wheels. He knows he is no longer a top-four defenseman, and that the Penguins are best served to finally provide ice time to some of their top prospects on the back end.
This hit drew Paul's eye, so take note, per the Canadian Press's Kelsey Patterson:
The Montreal Canadiens picked up two points on Saturday by beating the Toronto Maple Leafs 2-1 in a shootout.
But they had to do it without defenceman Sergei Gonchar, who left with an upper-body injury in the first period and did not return after a questionable hit from Toronto's David Clarkson.
The 40-year-old blue-liner was playing a loose puck behind Carey Price's net when Clarkson pushed him with both hands into the boards. Gonchar fell awkwardly and remained on his knees for several seconds.
Clarkson, who was assessed a five-minute major for interference and a game misconduct for the hit, didn't feel the hit was dirty and was even surprised to be sent to the dressing room early.
"I haven't seen it, but I think I got him in the shoulder," said Clarkson. "You don't like to see a guy go in awkwardly. I'm not sure of much more than that. I was just finishing my check. I didn't know I was kicked out."
David Clarkson received a five minute major for interference, five for fighting and a game.
Gonchar left with an upper-body injury and is out.
MONTREAL (November 11, 2014) – Montreal Canadiens general manager Marc Bergevin announced today the acquisition of defenseman Sergei Gonchar from the Dallas Stars, in return for forward Travis Moen.
Gonchar, 40, recorded one assist in three games thus far with the Stars in 2014-15, averaging 13:01 of ice time per game. He missed the first 11 games of the season with a foot injury.
Since he first joined the NHL back in 1994-95, Gonchar has recorded a total of 798 points (219 goals, 579 assists) in 1,256 regular season games. He scored 102 goals on the powerplay, two while shorthanded and 35 winning tallies. The 6' 2'' and 210 lbs forward also served 965 penalty minutes and displays a +26 plus/minus differential.
The Stars and defensemen's lower limbs don't go together very well. TSN reports that another Stars defenseman (last year it was Stephane Robidas) has suffered a leg fracture of some kind:
The Dallas Stars will be without veteran defenceman Sergei Gonchar for the start of the season.
GM Jim Nill announced Gonchar will miss 3-5 weeks with a fractured ankle.
Gonchar is in his second season with the Stars, scoring two goals and 20 assists with the team last year.
The 40-year-old, who's also spent time with the Washington Capitals, Pittsburgh Penguins, and Ottawa Senators, is in the second year of a two year, $10 million deal with Dallas.
from Mark Stepneski at the Dallas Stars website,
Defenseman Sergei Gonchar remains out with concussion-like symptoms. Gonchar, who was injured in Saturday’s game in San Jose, will miss his second straight game when the Dallas Stars open a five-game homestand against the Nashville Predators tonight at American Airlines Center.
“Still not feeling quite right,” Stars coach Lindy Ruff said about Gonchar, “so we’ve got to get him through that and when we do, he’ll start to exercise again.”
Aaron Rome, who has missed the last four games with a hip injury, will come back into the lineup tonight. Rome was injured in the Dec. 16 game in Colorado.
continue for more on the Stars...
Gonchar took a puck to the head, you can see the play below...
“I am very excited because I know they are going to be doing everything to make sure the team is going to be turned around and move forward, and the team is going to be better next year. I feel like the organization is going to improve the team over the summer, and I am really excited to be part of it.”
“My priority at this stage of my career is to really have a chance to win every night. You want to be on a team that is competing every night, trying to win every night and has a chance to make the playoffs and go far in the playoffs and win a Cup. I just don’t want to sign and be somewhere where you make your money and you be happy. The most important reason I signed with Dallas is because after I talked to them I find out they are going to sign more players, they are going to improve the team and they are going to do whatever it takes to make that next step. That’s what made me sign with them.”
-Sergei Gonchar on signing with the Dallas Stars, via Mark Stepneski of the Dallas Stars website.
FRISCO, Texas - The Dallas Stars announced today that the club has signed defenseman Sergei Gonchar to a two-year, $10 million ($5 million per season) contract through the 2014-15 season.
"Sergei is a high-end offensive defenseman who can quarterback a power play and help generate offense from the blue line," Dallas Stars General Manager Jim Nill said. "Sergei has had an impressive NHL career and has been a big contributor to Ottawa's offense over the last three seasons. We are excited to see him continue his career here in Dallas the next two years."
The Dallas Stars have agreed to terms on a two-year, $10 million contract with defenceman Sergei Gonchar, according to TSN Hockey Insider Darren Dreger.
The deal is pending the completion of signed paperwork.
The Stars acquired Gonchar from the Ottawa Senators on Friday in exchange for a conditional sixth-round pick in this year's draft.
Dreger reported that Gonchar's agent, JP Barry, was given permission to find a trade partner for Ottawa when the Senators decided not to re-sign the veteran defenceman. KHL interest accelerated the process for Gonchar, who will likely agree to a two-year deal with the Stars.
FRISCO, Texas - The Dallas Stars announced today that the club has acquired the rights to defenseman Sergei Gonchar from the Ottawa Senators in exchange for a conditional sixth-round pick in the 2013 NHL Draft.
The 6-foot-2, 206-pound blueliner from Chelyabinsk, Russia spent the last three seasons with the Ottawa Senators, appearing in 186 games and posting 91 points (15G-76A) with 101 penalty minutes. Amongst NHL defensemen in 2012-13, Gonchar was tied for fifth in assists (24) and shared 12th in points (27). He led Ottawa defensemen in scoring and ranked second on the team with 27 points (3G-24A) and first on the club in total assists.
OTTAWA - The Ottawa Senators announced today the team has traded the rights to defenceman Sergei Gonchar to the Dallas Stars in exchange for a conditional sixth-round draft pick in the 2013 NHL Entry Draft.
“We thank Sergei for his efforts in Ottawa,” said Senators general manager Bryan Murray. “We felt that this trade will give Sergei the opportunity to extend his career in the NHL and we wish him success with the Stars.
First Ryan Callahan of the Rangers followed below by Sergei Gonchar of the Senators.
FYI, with the Ottawa win, the top eight teams in the Eastern Conference are settled (Winnipeg eliminated tonight), but some position-jockeying still remains.
from Bruce Garrioch of the Ottawa Sun,
If the NHL does start a shortened season next month, don’t expect Sergei Gonchar to finish it with the Ottawa Senators.
The veteran defenceman, going into the final year of a contract paying him $5.5 million per season, will be targeted for a trade by the Pittsburgh Penguins once a collective bargaining agreement is reached.
Whether Gonchar’s former team waits until whatever date is set for the trade deadline or a makes a pitch before the season begins isn’t known, but league sources say Pittsburgh GM Ray Shero has interest in bringing back the 38-year-old.
from Bruce Garrioch of the Ottawa Sun,
While the names of defenceman Chris Phillips and winger Jarkko Ruutu have been bandied about on the trade market for months, Gonchar’s availability has only just surfaced and comes as a bit of a surprise.
Gonchar, 36, arrived amid great fanfare when he signed as an unrestricted free agent on July 1, but has produced only six goals and 15 assists in 50 games and is a brutal minus-17.
There are plenty of teams looking for defencemen as the deadline approaches — the Sharks, Blue Jackets and Bruins among them.
With two years and $11 million (all terms US) left on the three-year, $16.5-million deal he signed after spending five seasons with the Penguins, Gonchar isn’t an attractive option for many teams.
“You could deal him, but you’re going to have to take somebody back,” said one NHL insider. “It’s going to have to be a dollar-for-dollar, which means they’ll have to take someone’s big contract back.
“This is going to be a really tough deal for (the Senators) to make.”
from Ken Warren of the Ottawa Citizen,
Sergei Gonchar emerged from the Ottawa Senators dressing room almost an hour after Sunday’s 3-2 loss to the Washington Capitals, the strain of a dreadful start to his career with the Senators written all over his face.
The Senators’ prized summer free agent signing was expected to put a spark into the Senators power play and all-around offensive game. Instead, he ranks 26th among NHL defencemen in scoring, with four goals and 12 assists in 35 games.
More glaring, however, are his defensive mistakes, including an inexcusable gaffe early in the second period Sunday which helped the Capitals change the game’s momentum and overcome an early 2-0 deficit.
Gonchar now owns a plus-minus rating of minus 19, which ranks him 753rd among 756 NHL players. At his current rate, he will end the season with a staggering minus 44.
This week we will continue to look at former NHL players who are now playing in Europe.
Jagr is clearly not the offensive force that he was in his heyday with the Pittsburgh Penguins, but he has become quite a mentor to younger KHL players, while recording 14 points in 19 games for sixth place Avangard Omsk. However, Jagr’s most impressive feat this year was leading an undermanned Czech squad to World Championship gold against a heavily favoured Russian squad that featured Ovechkin, Malkin, Datsyuk and Gonchar.
HC Slovan Bratislava
Satan is hoping to land another midseason NHL contract as he did with the Boston Bruins last year. In the meantime, Satan registered eight points during a three game contract with Slovan Bratislava of the Slovak league. Satan can still find the back of the net and may yet have another crack at the NHL.
Filed in: Non-NHL Hockey, International Hockey, | KK Hockey | Permalink
Tags: alexander+ovechkin, alexei+yashin, boston+bruins, cristobal+huet, detroit+red+wings, evgeni+malkin, fred+braithwaite, j.s.+aubin, jaromir+jagr, manny+legace, marc+lamothe, mike+modano, miroslav+satan, pavel+datsyuk, pittsburgh+penguins, robert+esche, sergei+gonchar, slava+kozlov
from James Gordon of Hockey Capital at the Ottawa Citizen,
The Ottawa Senators are “very close” to a being true Stanley Cup contender, according to their new No. 1 defenceman.
Speaking with with the press in Ottawa for the first time since signing a three-year, $16.5 million contract on July 1, Sergei Gonchar argued his squad is well positioned to skate with the big boys in the Eastern Conference.
“Hopefully, with my addition, we can go far in the playoffs and win the Cup,” he said Friday.
from Rob Rossi of the Pittsburgh Tribune-Review,
There was no shortage of interested teams, so why the Senators?
Well, it is a Canadian city. You know how Canada is with hockey; playing up there is something special. If I was going to leave, I wanted to go someplace where hockey really mattered. Also, we played against them a lot in the playoffs and I do believe they are a good team. They played us very tough in the playoffs. They are very close to winning the Cup, and I believe I can help them go that next step.
The Penguins weren’t willing to give you a third year, and a lot of people believe their reluctance was the sensible move.
Yes, I can say before you ask that it motivates me. My goal is not to play just until that third year. I want to play in the NHL until the (2014) Olympics. They are in Russia, and I would love to be there for my country. Three years was never going to be the end of my career.
TSN reports Sergei Gonchar has signed with Ottawa.
added 12:22pm, via TSN,
Veteran defenceman Sergei Gonchar has signed a three-year contract with the Ottawa Senators worth $5.5 million per year.
The contract also includes a no-trade clause.
from Kevin Gorman of the Pittsburgh Tribune-Review,
“Walking out of here and not knowing if you’re going to come back, it’s not a great feeling,” Gonchar said. “But we have plenty of time until July 1.”
Gonchar said he met with Penguins general manager Ray Shero yesterday and plans to speak with him again before the opening of free agency. His agent, JP Barry, agreed in March to resume negotiations after the season….
“I’d like to stay here, but the deal has to work for both sides,” Gonchar said. “We’re not going to look at my contract and say it’s the last one. We’re going to weigh in everything - the city, the fans, the length of it, the teammates, the coaches.”
from Michael Russo of the Star Tribune,
How does the Wild’s Derek Boogaard get five games on a first-offense elbow last season but Phoenix’s Ed Jovanovski gets two on a third blow to the head in two years—and second in a month—just a week ago?
How does one man arbitrarily render discipline based seemingly on no criteria?
Critics joke that (Colin) Campbell must have a dartboard in his office, although as a blog commenter said on “Russo’s Rants” the other day, it’s more like “Wheel of Fortune” because eventually Campbell would get good at throwing darts.
By dodging transparency and then showing zero candor, Campbell leaves the league open to criticism.
But after hearing Campbell on the radio Thursday justify why he didn’t suspend Pittsburgh’s Sergei Gonchar for his blow to the head of the Wild’s Cal Clutterbuck, it’s probably best he keeps muzzling himself.
added 8:01am, from Larry Brooks of the NY Post,
His official title in the league directory no longer is operative. This was the week in which Colin Campbell first and foremost became the NHL’s Cleaner, in charge of dust-busting every single potential scandal under the rug, never to be seen or dealt with again.
Let’s face it. Five years into its proclaimed “partnership” with the players, the NHL has become a monolithic power, unopposed and unchallenged (except by a foolhardy litigant named Jim Balsillie), dictated on the business side by Gary Bettman and Bill Daly, ruled on the hockey side by Campbell, whose decisions become more personal, more quixotic, less credible and thus less worthy of respect by the day.
“I’d have been suspended indefinitely. There’s no doubt that all he was trying to do was hurt me.”
-Cal Clutterbuck of the Minnesota Wild on the elbow he took from Sergei Gonchar of the Pittsburgh Penguins. More from Clutterbuck by Michael Russo of the Star Tribune.
I’ve had a few emails today from readers asking about any action against Sergei Gonchar for his elbow on Cal Clutterbuck on Monday.
According to an email exchange with TSN Insider Bob McKenzie, there will be no further action…
Nothing on Gonchar. Five minutes deemed sufficient.
So there you have it, end of story. In case you missed the incident, you can watch it here.
via Michael Russo of the Star Tribune,
The Wild fans got Cal Clutterbuck’s back by booing Pittsburgh’s Sergei Gonchar the rest of Monday’s game, but Clutterbuck was steaming after the Wild’s 4-3 victory because Gonchar took a flying elbow at his head in the third period.
Gonchar received a five-minute major for elbowing, although the Wild didn’t score on the power play.
“He better hope he retires at the end of the year, I’ll tell you that,” Clutterbuck said, a cut on the bridge of his nose. “Somebody’s going to hurt him before the end of the year. Someone will. It’s not going to be me, but someone will.”
from Jim Matheson of the Edmonton Journal,
• The Pittsburgh Penguins will probably let their best defender, Sergei Gonchar, walk in July as a free-agent because he’ll be 36 and they’re not giving him $5 million a year for three years. They will make due with Kris Letang, although he’s looking for $4 million, and Alex Goligoski. They have cap issues, like all teams, but can easily dump Ruslan Fedotenko and/or Matt Cooke in the summer to free up some money.
• Do you think the free-spirited Maxim Afinogenov would be on the Russian Olympic team if he hadn’t signed in Atlanta and found himself on Ilya Kovachuk’s line? Me, neither.
from Bruce Garrioch of the Ottawa Sun,
The Pittsburgh Penguins have put contract talks with Sergei Gonchar on hold with the sides at odds over the defenceman’s value. Gonchar, a looming unrestricted free agent, carries a $5-million cap hit this season, but could easily command $6 million on the open market. GM Ray Shero is in a tough spot: He faces cap issues over the next few seasons with Sidney Crosby and Evgeni Malkin accounting for an annual hit of $17.4 million — yet the Penguins struggled when Gonchar was hurt earlier this season.
more NHL talk…
from Pierre LeBrun of ESPN,
And just like that, the picture changed for a pair of Eastern Conference contenders Wednesday with the news the Pittsburgh Penguins had lost their top minute man and the Boston Bruins their top offensive weapon.
But just how badly will the injuries to Pens defenseman Sergei Gonchar (broken wrist) and Bruins center Marc Savard (broken foot), both out four to six weeks, affect each club?
Let’s start with the Penguins. After all, they are the Stanley Cup champions.
Yes, we all know how badly they missed Gonchar last season when the All-Star blueliner missed the first 56 games of the season. They were basically a .500 team and on the playoff bubble. He later returned and the Penguins went on a tear all the way to the Promised Land.
I’m not discounting what the 35-year-old defenseman brings to this team. He’s their best defenseman, their top puck-mover, the key to their transition game, their best defensive shut-down guy, and, of course, their power-play quarterback. But I believe Kris Letang and Alex Goligoski are better equipped to handle some of that load than they were when Gonchar went down in September 2008.
From Dmitry Chesnokov at Yahoo!‘s Puck Daddy:
Q. Sergei, can you compare tonight’s game with last night’s?
GONCHAR: In my opinion we did not play bad. Look at the statistics in the regular season and the playoffs. What other team managed to outshoot the Red Wings in a game? We did it yesterday and today. We constantly created scoring chances. It is a different matter that we did not convert. But this is Detroit. You also need luck in addition to playing well against them.
What in your opinion is the main reason for the loss? Just no luck? Or you couldn’t cope with the system Detroit was playing?
Not really, you can play against their system and win. The most important is to finish your chances with goals. It’s not enough just to create opportunities. But I will repeat myself, today they had a little bit more luck than us.
more from Sergei Gonchar plus a couple questions for Evgeni Malkin
from Darren Dreger of TSN,
Sources tell TSN Pittsburgh defenceman Sergei Gonchar suffered an apparent knee injury and will miss the next several weeks, perhaps the remainder of the season….
The National Hockey League has ruled out the notion of supplemental discipline which has prompted reaction from Gonchar’s representative, JP Barry.
‘‘We now have Exhibit A of the extreme double-standard that exists in the NHL’s approach to discipline. Alex clearly cuts back with his knee after missing his check with devastating results. But of course, because it’s Alex, its all Sergei’s fault,’’ Barry told TSN.
from Tarik El-Bashir of Capitals Insider at the Washington Post,
Opinions among the media varied regarding Ovechkin’s right knee to right knee hit on Sergei Gonchar at the end of the first period. Gonchar had to be helped off the ice and speculation around here is that it could be serious. We should know more in the morning.
We should also know tomorrow morning whether the league felt the hit warranted a fine or suspension.
“It tried to hit him and he tried to move to his left, and I don’t have time to realize what is going on and I hit [him with] my knee,” Ovechkin said. “It was accident. I’m not the kind of guy who wants to injure a player like this, especially [because] I know Gonch. I tried to hit him with my shoulder and he moved left but his legs were in the same spot.”
A couple of Penguins had a different take on it.
added 8:14am, Craig Custance of Sporting News Today says it is hard to imagine the NHL suspending Ovechkin with the Capitals playing their biggest game of the year tonight.
Watch the CBC view of the play…
added 8:54pm, via Scott Burnside of ESPN,
...just the replay a couple of times in the press box and it definitely looked like Ovechkin stuck out his knee and took Gonchar knee-on-knee as the Pens defenseman tried to spin away from the Caps star. Now, it’s not quite Bryan Marchment, but it was definitely a dangerous play. And seeing Gonchar writhing on the ice by himself while the play went into the Capitals’ zone on the delayed penalty was pretty scary.
From Shelly Anderson at the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette:
Penguins defenseman Sergei Gonchar today received medical clearance to return to the [Penguins} lineup.
Gonchar, the team’s top defenseman and quarterback of the power play, will not play tonight against San Jose. He said he will continue to practice and judge himself day to day to determine when he believes he is ready to return.
Sergei Gonchar of the Pittsburgh Penguins will mis 4-6 months due to surgery on a dislocated left shoulder, a source told ESPN.com’s Pierre LeBrun on Monday.
The team is expected to announce Gonchar’s injury status on Tuesday.
added 9/30/08, via the Pittsburgh Penguins,
Pittsburgh Penguins defenseman Sergei Gonchar will undergo arthroscopic surgery on his dislocated shoulder Thursday and will be sidelined for four to six months.
UPMC physician Dr. Mark Rodosky will perform the surgery to repair cartilage and ligament damage to his left shoulder. Gonchar suffered the injury during the first period of the Penguins’ pre-season opener against Tampa Bay on September 20.
“It is always difficult to lose a very talented player and leader for an extended period of time, but we all believe this is the best decision for Sergei,” said Ray Shero, the Penguins’ executive vice president and general manager. “We are confident that he will come back strong after this surgery. In the meantime, we’ll look to our other defensemen to step up in his absence.”
from the Sporting News Staff,
A Monday meeting will determine whether Pittsburgh Penguins defenseman Sergei Gonchar misses six weeks or six months of the NHL scheduled.
Gonchar, top defenseman and power-play point man for the Penguins, is rehabbing a dislocated left shoulder. The question now is, will surgery be required?
Personally, I would feel more secure with this report if an actual name was used instead of ‘staff’.
via the Pittsburgh Penguins,
Penguins defenseman Sergei Gonchar has a dislocated shoulder and will be out of the lineup indefinitely, it was announced today by Executive Vice President and General Manager Ray Shero.
Gonchar suffered the injury in the pre-season opener against Tampa Bay on Sept. 20.
“Sergei will continue to be evaluated as our team medical personnel consider several treatment options,” Shero said. “In the meantime, we will look for our other defensemen to step up and fill the void created by his absence.”
Transcripts of interviews with Sidney Crosby and Petr Sykora of the Pittsburgh Penguins.
Well worth a read. There’s a pizza story in there…
Updated at 2:41am ET: More quotes added from Sergei Gonchar & Petr Sykora
from Jim Matheson of the Edmonton Journal,
Nicklas Lidstrom is going to win his sixth Norris trophy, but Sergei Gonchar may finish in the top three. The Penguins defenceman has been maligned for years for his play away from the puck, but this year he’s been very good. He might deserve more praise than Zdeno Chara in Boston, or Brian Campbell before he was traded from Buffalo to San Jose. “He matches up against the other team’s best players every night. I think his game has gone to another level there,” said Penguins GM Ray Shero
more and other NHL topics…
The NHL provided a media conference call with Pittsburgh Penguins center Evgeni Malkin today. To interpret for Evgeni, Sergei Gonchar joined in on the call.
Earlier today, Evgeni was named First Star for the month of February after leading the league in scoring with 9 goals and 17 assists for 26 points in 14 games. He currently sits first in overall NHL scoring with 88 points on 37 goals and 51 assists. The Penguins are tied atop the Eastern Conference standings with Montréal, each with 81 points.
Q. Evgeni, can you tell me if you’re seeing different players checking you than before when Sidney Crosby was playing in terms of like different defensemen against you and different centers playing against you?
From Rob Rossi at the Pittsburgh Tribune-Review,
Gonchar is not listed on its All-Star ballot. According to a league spokesperson, the hockey operations department has the final decision on the All-Star ballot, which was finalized at the end of October and based on performance from previous seasons.
Gonchar ranked second, eighth, first and second (tied) in scoring by defensemen after each of the past four seasons.
“And I would still definitely say he is underrated,” defenseman Ryan Whitney said. “But players know how good he is, and that is what is important to him.”
Gonchar is the only current defenseman to record at least 50 points in each of the past seven seasons. He has scored more goals (104) than any defenseman dating to 2000, and his 385 points during that span are second to only Detroit’s Nicklas Lidstrom, who has 391.
Rossi also notes that Gonchar currently has 19 points through 20 games this season—tied for first among all NHL defensemen.
From the CP via TSN,
The Montreal Canadiens are calling for an NHL rule change after defenceman Francis Bouillon suffered a shoulder injury from a hit in the dying seconds of overtime.
The Canadiens feel that Pittsburgh defenceman Sergei Gonchar should not have been allowed to take part in a shootout after he was called for boarding with 1.6 seconds left in the five-minute overtime in Montreal’s 4-3 win over the Penguins on Saturday night.