Player Notes

  • Nicklas Backstrom (hip) not sure about opener
    Nicklas Backstrom (hip) remains uncertain of his status for the season opener on Oct. 10.

    Advice: Backstrom wants to make sure he's completely recovered before he returns to the lineup. He is skating and taking things day-by-day, but if he's unsure of his ability to play a month from now then it seems fair to assume that he's not yet close to being 100%. Today, 11:47 am
  • Bergeron: Boston needs to be more consistent
    Patrice Bergeron felt the Boston Bruins' consistency was a key issue last season.

    Advice: Bergeron believes Boston's inconsistency partially stemmed from the squad getting too comfortable when holding a one-goal lead. "I think focus might have been part of it, but it’s hard to pinpoint one thing that caused the inconsistency," he added. "But it’s something that we definitely have to fix. Going out in games and wanting to be the difference in the whole game is something we have to accomplish, and we have to resolve it early if we want to be a better team." Bergeron had 23 goals and 55 points in 81 games last season. Today, 7:06 am
  • Jack Eichel will live with Matt Moulson
    Jack Eichel will move in with fellow Sabres forward Matt Moulson.

    Advice: Spending that kind of time with the veteran should help Eichel in his rookie campaign. "I know that everyone who knows him well says great things about him," Eichel said. "I haven't heard a bad thing about the guy. The way he offered his house to me shows what kind of person he is. He's a really generous guy, a good guy to be around." The two of them might also end up playing on the same line together for parts of the 2015-16 campaign. Yesterday, 7:01 am
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  • Report: Teams inquire about Patrick Kane
    There have reportedly been a minimum of five teams that have inquired to the Chicago Blackhawks about the availability of Patrick Kane.

    Advice: Kane is under investigation for an incident that allegedly occurred at his residence on August 2nd. According to media reports, Kane is being accused of raping a woman. No charges have been pressed. He signed an eight-year, $84-million contract, which is scheduled to begin this season. Tuesday, 1:48 pm
  • Kopitar, Kings not close in contract talks
    Kings GM Dean Lombardi doesn't feel that Los Angeles and Anze Kopitar are even in the same ballpark when it comes to Kopitar's contract negotiations.

    Advice: Kopitar is entering the final campaign of his seven-year, $47.6 million contract. He means a lot to the Kings' franchise so it would be surprising if he doesn't eventually agree to terms. At the same time, based on what Lombardi said we have to wonder if Kopitar will head into training camp without a new deal. He has 218 goals and 610 points in 683 career games with Los Angeles. Tuesday, 10:29 am
  • Nazem Kadri is happy with how his summer went
    Nazem Kadri feels good about how this summer went for him.

    Advice: "This off-season has been my best," Kadri said. "Physically, it has been easier. My body is catching up with me and it's easier to get stronger and I can work on those areas that I have to, a lot of explosive movements, agility, a lot of footwork. I'm continually working on speed and obviously strength. I think my lower body is a whole different ball game. I've become stronger and that's what you need to keep up with all the best players." Although expectations are low for the Leafs overall, Kadri is entering this season with plenty to prove. He's coming off of a rough campaign where he recorded 39 points in 73 games and received a pair of suspensions, including one by the Leafs for disciplinary reasons. He has the potential to be a great player, but he'll turn 25 on Oct. 6, so talk of his potential is going to start to die out. At some point in the not too distant future, he'll start to be assessed purely based on what he's shown rather than what he was once pr Tuesday, 7:18 am
  • Connor McDavid doesn't want to focus on stats
    Connor McDavid doesn't want to focus on reaching numerical goals.

    Advice: In other words, he'd rather focus on having a good season rather than recording X amount of points. Obviously a good season would likely go hand-in-hand with offensive production for a skilled forward like McDavid, but his point is partially that if he sets those kinds of statistical benchmarks for himself, it could end up negatively influencing him. He also noted, "Numbers are one thing, but some of the best games I have ever played have been games in which I didn't get a point or maybe had one point." Of course, with a focus on fantasy hockey, we obviously put a lot of value in numbers. McDavid is a risky pick because rookies, even incredibly talented ones, are particularly hard to predict, but he at least has the potential to surpass the 70-point mark in his first campaign. Monday, 6:48 pm
  • Evgeny Kuznetsov happy with two-year deal
    Evgeny Kuznetsov thinks the two-year bridge contract he signed in July is good for both sides.

    Advice: Kuznetsov hopes to sign a long-term deal with Washington eventually, but this contract gives him a chance to show Washington what he's capable of. He recorded 11 goals and 37 points in 80 contests last season and he's believed to have a significant amount of untapped upside. In the meantime, his contract comes with a $3 million annual cap hit. Monday, 9:22 am
  • Stan Bowman: Fans will love new Blackhawks
    After a tumultuous off-season, Chicago Blackhawks GM Stan Bowman is exalting the virtues of change.

    Advice: Bowman told " I think we're really going to fall in love with some of these guys." Few, if any, teams have seen the sort of dramatic changes the defending champions experienced this summer, so they'll need to see the likes of Marko Dano contribute in 2015-16. Sunday, 11:19 am
  • Andrew Copp aims to make Jets roster
    Winnipeg Jets prospect Andrew Copp hopes to go from prospect to full-time roster member in 2015-16.

    Advice: Copp, 21, generated 14 goals and 31 points in 36 games with the University of Michigan last season. He also appeared in one game with the Jets, producing an assist. He was a fourth-round pick (104th overall) in the 2013 NHL Draft. Sunday, 8:54 am
  • Seguin loves what GM Jim Nill is doing in DAL
    Tyler Seguin was happy with the Stars' acquisition of Patrick Sharp.

    Advice: "It was kind of more of a, ‘There’s Jim Nill again’ kind of reaction," said Seguin. "Be very quiet during most of the trades and then all of the sudden make a big bang. In the last three seasons, including [Rich] Peverley and myself coming over. On July 4, I was sitting on my phone just waiting for Jim to do something. It’s kind of been his date. Around there was our acquisition from Boston, then the [Jason] Spezza and [Ales] Hemsky deal. Now Sharp, Niemi and Oduya. Jim is doing his thing and making our team better. That gives the players a lot of confidence as well." Sunday, 6:28 am
  • Cody Eakin happy to have new deal done
    Cody Eakin believes that his new contract extension will get his season started on the right foot.

    Advice: Eakin didn't have a contract going into 2014-15 and he missed a good chunk of training camp because of it. He subsequently got off to a slow start before rounding into form later on. "I don’t think anyone was happy how last season started, so this is much better," Eakin said. "I definitely think that getting this done is a positive. I think we’re entering an important time for the team, and I’m excited to be a part of it." Saturday, 6:42 am
  • Crosby excited about Phil Kessel's speed
    Sidney Crosby said that he's excited about Phil Kessel's speed.

    Advice: "Speed. I think that's probably the first thing that comes to mind," Crosby said. "He's a threat with his shot and with his feet, but I think his feet kind of create everything for him." Kessel has had some very good seasons while playing with average centers. His offensive upside while playing with Crosby or Malkin is huge. Saturday, 6:29 am
  • Kyle Brodziak set for 3rd- and 4th-line roles
    Kyle Brodziak is expected to shift up and down the lineup in 2015-16.

    Advice: "They told me that I'd probably play the first two periods on a line with (Ryan) Reaves and (Steve) Ott and be the responsible guy so they can be set free (to disturb and bang)," said Brodziak. "I know Hitch uses his fourth line a lot. After the second period, they said I might move up in the lineup and play a few more minutes." That plan may change now that Patrik Berglund will start the year on the sidelines after having shoulder surgery. Brodziak could end up centering the third line if Scott Gomez or Robby Fabbri don't earn roster spots out of training camp. Friday, 2:02 pm
  • Patrik Berglund has successful surgery
    Patrik Berglund had successful shoulder surgery on Friday.

    Advice: The Blues stated again that Berglund will be re-evaluated in four months. Berglund wasn't expected to be much of a fantasy factor this season after a pair of unproductive years, but his injury will give opportunities to Dmitrij Jaskin, Robby Fabbri, Ty Rattie and Scott Gomez at training camp. Friday, 12:27 pm
  • Door is open for Robby Fabbri at camp
    Robby Fabbri has a better chance of making the Blues out of camp because of Patrik Berglund's shoulder injury.

    Advice: Fellow prospect Ty Rattie and camp invitee Scott Gomez, who agreed to attend on a professional tryout, will be in the running for a roster spot as well. Fabbri has the talent to seize the opportunity and he impressed the team at last year's training camp. Thursday, 6:15 pm
  • Canes, Lindholm agree to 2-year extension
    Elias Lindholm has agreed to a two-year contract extension worth $5.4 million.

    Advice: He will make $2.5 million in 2016-17 and then $2.9 million during the 2017-18 campaign. Lindholm, who was the fifth overall pick in 2013, showed plenty of promise last season while recording 17 goals and 39 points in 81 games. "We expect he will be a very important part of the Hurricanes as he continues to develop as a professional," GM Ron Francis said after the signing. Thursday, 3:57 pm
  • Jason Spezza likes Stars' summer additions
    Jason Spezza likes the off-season changes that Dallas has made.

    Advice: "You are bringing in great pedigree," he said referring to new teammates Patrick Sharp, Johnny Oduya and Antti Niemi. "You are not only bringing in great players; you are bringing in great players that have won and won together. They'll have their different outlook on things and what they found that was successful for them in Chicago they can implement things in our dressing room. We have a pretty open team to learn and get better. When you add three guys that have won, it is huge for the locker room." Spezza is excited for the upcoming season and, just like most players, he is anxious to start training camp. Wednesday, 6:29 pm
  • Canes 'comfortable' to wait on Staal contract
    Eric Staal probably won't have a new contract with Carolina before the start of training camp.

    Advice: "[I'm] kind of waiting to see how it's going to play out here in the next while," Staal said. "I haven't given it a ton of thought, or time, as of right now. I'm focused on having a good finish to training for the summer and getting ready for the start of camp." He has one year left on his contract, but the Hurricanes aren't in any rush to get a deal done. GM Ron Francis said, "We're comfortable letting this go down the road a little bit." There's been plenty of speculation that Staal could be a trade target this year, but he has made it known that he would like to stay with Carolina. Wednesday, 9:51 am
  • Malkin had ankle injury during playoffs
    Evgeni Malkin (ankle) should be ready for training camp.

    Advice: Coach Mike Johnstons has received positive medical updates from all his previously injured players, including Malkin. He had a sprained ankle before the playoffs that he played through. Tuesday, 2:28 pm
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