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Free Agent Frenzy

NHL Free Agency 2012 kicks off today. Here’s a look at the Top Free Agents Available. Stay tuned to this post for updated signings and trades.

Free Agents

1) Zach Parise LW ~ Minnesota Wild

2) Ryan Suter D ~ Minnesota Wild

3) Martin Broduer G ~ New Jersey Devils

4) Teemu Selanne RW

5) Shane Doan RW

6) Alex Semin LW

7) Jason Garrison D ~ Vancouver Canucks

8) Matt Carle D

9) PA Parenteau RW ~ Colorado Avalanche

10) Jiri Hudler C ~ Calgary Flames

Trade Block

1) Rick Nash

2) Bobby Ryan

3) Roberto Luongo

4) Keith Yandle

News

Flyers and Blue Jackets discussing trade for Rick Nash. Jackets interested in Brayden Schenn and Sean Couturier, or one of them with several other players.

Hurricanes sign Jordan Staal to 10 year extension worth $60 million.

Signings

F Jordin Tootu Detroit Red Wings

F Brandon Prust Montreal Canadians

F Mikael Samuelson Detroit Red Wings

F PA Parenteau Colorado Avalanche

F Alexei Ponikarovski Winnipeg Jets

F Dustin Penner LA Kings

F Arron Asham NY Rangers

D Filip Kuba Florida Panthers

G Tuukka Rask Boston Bruins

F Ray Whitney Dallas Stars

F Colby Armstrong Montreal Canadians

G Jonas Gustavsson Detroit Red Wings

G Michael Leighton Philadelphia Flyers

D Joe Corvo Carolina Hurricanes

G Yann Danis Edmonton Oilers

F Benoit Pouliot Tampa Bay Lightning

D Stu Bickell NY Rangers

F John Mitchell Colorado Avalanche

G Justin Peters Carolina Hurricanes

D Mike Lundin Ottawa Senators

F Zenon Konopka Minnesota Wild

F Brett Sutter Carolina Hurricanes

F Torrey Mitchell Minnesota Wild

F Steve MacIntyre Pittsburgh Penguins

F Brad Boyes NY Islanders

F Adam Burish San Jose Sharks

G Curtis McElhinney Columbus Blue Jackets

F Chris Kelly Boston Bruins

G Jeff Zatkoff Pittsburgh Penguins

F Riley Holzapfel Pittsburgh Penguins

F Tanner Glass Pittsburgh Penguins

F David Moss Phoenix Coyotes

F Guillaume Latendresse Ottawa Senators

G Chad Johnson Phoenix Coyotes

D Matt Carkner NY Islanders

D Sheldon Brookbank Chicago Blackhawks

F Darcy Hordichuk Edmonton Oilers

F Micheal Haley NY Rangers

F George Parros Florida Panthers

D Adrian Aucoin Columbus Blue Jackets

D Dylan Reese Pittsburgh Penguins

G Jussi Rynnas Toronto Maple Leafs

F Ryan Hamilton Toronto Maple Leafs

F Matt Frattin Toronto Maple Leafs

D Greg Zanon Colorado Avalanche

G Mike McKenna St. Louis Blues

D Taylor Chorney St. Louis Blues

D Scott Ford St. Louis Blues

D Mike Kostka Toronto Maple Leafs

C Jay McClement Toronto Maple Leafs

D Aaron Rome Dallas Stars

F Michael Blunden Montreal Canadians

G Cedric Desjardins Montreal Canadians

F Warren Peters Pittsburgh Penguins

D Sheldon Souray Anaheim Ducks

D Jason Garrison Vancouver Canucks

G Chris Mason Nashville Predators

D Paul Gaustad Nashville Predators

F Brian McGrattan Nashville Predators

D Sami Salo Tampa Bay Lightning

RW Brad Staubitz Anaheim Ducks

F John Scott Buffalo Sabres

F Trevor Smith Pittsburgh Penguins

D Bryan Allen Anaheim Ducks

D Francis Bouillon Montreal Canadians

D Kevin Marshall Washington Capitals

D Garrett Stafford Washington Capitals

F Joey Crabb Washington Capitals

G Martin Brodeur New Jersey Devils

G Johan Hedberg New Jersey Devils

F Jeff Woywitka St. Louis Blues

G Alex Stalock San Jose Sharks

F Bracken Kearns San Jose Sharks

C Toby Petersen Dallas Stars

F Eric Boulton NY Islanders

F Andrew Ebbett Vancouver Canucks

F Steve Pinnizotto Vancouver Canucks

F Jiri Hudler Calgary Flames

F Alexandre Bolduc Phoenix Coyotes

F Chris Conner Phoenix Coyotes

D Matt Smaby Anaheim Ducks

F Martin St. Pierre Chicago Blackhawks

C Olli Jokinen Winnipeg Jets

D Jack Hillen Washington Capitals

D Erik Johnson Colorado Avalanche

D Bryce Salvador New Jersey Devils

D Cullen Eddy Philadelphia Flyers

D Danny Syvret Philadelphia Flyers

F Mike Testwuide Philadelphia Flyers

D Mike Moore Nashville Predators

F Rob Klinkhammer Phoenix Coyotes

F Kris Newbury NY Rangers

D Andrew Campbell Los Angeles Kings

F Jaromir Jagr Dallas Stars

F Taylor Pyatt NY Rangers

F Jake Dowell Minnesota Wild

F Steve Sullivan Phoenix Coyotes

D Ryan Suter Minnesota Wild

F Zach Parise Minnesota Wild

G Al Montoya Winnipeg Jets

F Akim Aliu Calgary Flames

F Paul Byron Calgary Flames

Future Teammates?

Crosby Gets Extension

The Pittsburgh Penguins have signed center Sidney Crosby to a 12 year deal worth $104.4 million. The deal will average $8.7 million per year.

“This is a great day for hockey and tremendous news for the Pittsburgh Penguins and our fans, We are grateful for all that Sidney Crosby has done for our franchise since coming to Pittsburgh in 2005, both on and off the ice, and we look forward to having him in a Penguins uniform for the rest of his career.” said co-owners Mario Lemieux and Ron Burke.

Crosby has dealt with concussions during the last two seasons playing in only 63 games. Crosby did not take a raise to give the Pens some money to spend when Free Agency starts July 1st. They are expected to go after New Jersey Devils Winger Zach Parise.

Crosby is the youngest captain to win a Stanley Cup at 21 years old. He is a Art Ross, Rocket Richard, and Hart Trophy Winner.

As a Penguins fan it’s great to see the Penguins lock up Crosby for the rest of his career. I’m a little concerned with his injuries but it’s all about the upside and what he is capable of doing for the Pens.

Thank You Pens

Penguins Rout Flyers 10-3

AHL Playoffs: WBS Penguins vs Hershey Bears

The Wilkes-Barre Scranton Penguins or Baby Pens as they are known to some will open the AHL Playoffs Friday night against the 11 time Calder Cup Champion Hershey Bears. This is a series that for me is hard to watch. I am a Pens fan so I wanna see the Baby Pens do well. However the Hershey Bears play about a half hour from where I live and are a very loved team around here.

Since 2005 the teams have met four times in the Playoffs. The Penguins eliminated the Bears in 2007-2008 winning a 4-1 series. The Bears beat the Pens in 2005-2006 4-0, 2006-2007 4-1, and in 2008-2009 4-3. That was 4 consecutive seasons they met in the Playoffs. The Penguins have never won the Calder Cup but reached the Finals 3 times in 2000-2001, 2003-2004, and 2007-2008.

The Bears are the New York Yankees of the AHL having won 11 calder Cups including back to bck in 2008-2009 & 2009-2010. They have won the Conference Championship 22 times. They also have 3 players in the Top 10 in Scoring in the AHL.

During the regular season the team’s met 10 times with the 4 seed Penguins winning 7 games over the 5 seeded Bears.

Players to Watch

HER Chris Bourque – 93 Points, 27 Goals, 66 Assists

HER Keith Aucoin – 70 Points, 11 Goals, 59 Assists

HER Ryan Potulny- 65 Points, 33 Goals, 32 Assists

WBS Ben Street- 57 Points, 27 Goals, 30 Assists

HER Jacob Mikfilkier- 56 Points, 21 Goals, 35 Assists

WBS Bryan Lerg- 53 Points, 27 Goals, 26 Assists

In The Net

WBS Brad Thiessen- 23-15-2, 88.7 SV%

WBS Scott Munroe- 19-10-3, 90.7 SV%

HER Braden Holtby- 20-15-2, 90.6 SV%

HER Dany Sabourin- 18-12-5, 90.9 SV%

Schedule

Game 1 – Fri., Apr. 20 – Hershey at W-B/Scranton, 7:05
Game 2 – Sat., Apr. 21 – Hershey at W-B/Scranton, 7:05
Game 3 – Wed., Apr. 25 – W-B/Scranton at Hershey, 7:00
*Game 4 – Fri., Apr. 27 – W-B/Scranton at Hershey, 7:00
*Game 5 – Sat., Apr. 28 – Hershey at W-B/Scranton, 7:05

Flyers Take 3-0 Lead

The Philadelphia Flyers took a 3-0 series lead in an 8-4 win over bitter rival Pittsburgh Sunday in a game that looked more like a UFC fight than a hockey game.

There were 133 penalty minutes from 35 penalties. The most in two decades in a playoff game.  The penalties included a Match Penalty, 2 Game Misconducts, and two brawls.

The Penguins lost Aaron Asham who hit Brayden Schenn in the throat with his stick and punched him on the ground. Asham was ejected and likely facing a suspension. Another Penguin who could miss Game 4 is James “The Real Deal” Neal who left his feet to hit 19 year old rookie Sean Couturier. Moments later Neal would also hit Claude Giroux in the head and was involved in a fight and ejected.

The game featured 5 different players with 2 goals with Flyers Maxime Talbot, Danny Briere, and Matt Read along with Penguins Jordan Staal and James Neal scoring twice.

A story to watch in Game 4 may be wwho the Penguins start at goalie after Marc-Andre Fluery was pulled after two periods. Fluery had given up 18 goals in 8 periods. Brent Johnson gave up 2 in 1 period. I would go back to Fluery since this may wake him up that no man is irreplaceble. He has to step up and play like the elite goalie he is.

One of the more exciting parts of the game was watching two stars go at it in a brawl. Something not seen much as Sidney Crosby and Claude Giroux fought. Crosby would win the battle but the Flyers control the war so far.

Game 4 the Pens need to show more class and the ability to play some Defense. The lost all composure in Game 3 and looked like a team that quit.

Weber Fined $2,500 For Zetterberg Hit

Stanley Cup Playoffs: Penguins vs Flyers

What better way to open up the playoffs than with a bitter rivalry with The Battle of Pennsylvania. The Penguins open up as the favorites to win the Stanley Cup now that Crosby is healthy along with the best player in the league this season Evgeni Malkin.

The Flyers got the best of the season series winning 4 of the 6 games. April 1, 2012 featured a brawl between the two teams followed by a Penguins win in the season finale on April 8.

12/8 Flyers 3-2

12/29 Flyers 4-2

2/18 Penguins 6-4

3/18 Flyers 3-2 (OT)

4/1 Flyers 6-4

4/7 Penguins 4-2

The Flyers have been very good against the Penguins in Pittsburgh but this is the Playoffs and all bets are off. All that matters to these teams is the hatred they have for each other. One can’t ignore the history of Philly Chokes when it comes to winning in the playoffs. The Flyers have not won a Stanley Cup since 1975 when they won back to back Cups in 73-74 & 74-75. The Penguins meanwhile have won 3 Cups in 90-91, 91-92, and 08-09.

Pittsburgh

P: Evgeni Malkin (109)

G: Evgeni Malkin (50)

A: Evgeni Malkin (59)

W: Marc-Andre Fluery (42)

SV%: Marc-Andre Fluery (91.3%)

Flyers

P: Claude Giroux (93)

G: Scott Hartnell (37)

A: Claude Giroux (65)

W: Ilya Bryzgalov (33)

SV%: Ilya Bryzgalov (90.9%)

Playoff Schedule

Game 1 – April 11 7:30 PM

Game 2 – April 13 7:30 PM

Game 3 – April 15 3:00 PM

Game 4 – April 18 7:30 PM

Game 5 – April 20 7:30 PM

Game 6 & 7 – TBD

BallerSoup Prediction

I may be a little biased here being that I am a Penguins fan. I see the Pens winning this series in 5 games. Penguins are experienced while the Flyers are very young. Expect to see some brawling in this one too.

Stamkos Scores 60th