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2011 Offseason News

Canucks' Kesler has successful hip surgery

Tuesday, 08.02.2011 / 6:37 PM / 2011 Offseason News

Dan Rosen - Senior Writer

Vancouver center and Selke Trophy winner Ryan Kesler was playing hurt during the Stanley Cup Final and now we know exactly what was wrong with him.

The Canucks announced Tuesday that Kesler underwent successful surgery to repair the labrum in his hip and is expected to have a full recovery in 10-12 weeks. The Vancouver Province reported Kesler had the surgery on July 25.

Vancouver is scheduled to open the 2011-12 season at home against Pittsburgh on Oct. 6, which would be 10 and a half weeks from the day Kesler reportedly had the operation. While the Canucks are hoping he can return for the start of the regular season, a more likely scenario has Kesler not returning to Vancouver's lineup until mid-to-late October.

Referendum defeat has Isles looking forward

Tuesday, 08.02.2011 / 12:18 PM / 2011 Offseason News

Dan Rosen - Senior Writer

New York Islanders owner Charles Wang used the terms "disappointed" and "heartbroken" to describe his emotions in the wake of the failed public referendum that could have delivered a new state-of-the-art arena for his hockey club and sports and entertainment hub for his county.

Newsday reported early Tuesday morning that with 99 percent of the precincts calculated, the vote was 57 percent against and 43 percent for the referendum that called for Nassau County to borrow $400 million through a general obligation fund to build a new arena and a minor league baseball stadium.

"Right now, I have to tell you, it's a very emotional time and we're not going to make any comments on any specific next steps," Wang told a group of employees, union leaders, county officials and media at Nassau Coliseum early Tuesday morning, according to the Islanders website.

Nassau County votes on potential new Islanders arena

Monday, 08.01.2011 / 5:10 PM / 2011 Offseason News

Nassau County residents are voting Monday in a special election on a $400 million referendum that could lead to construction of a new home for the New York Islanders. If the referendum passes, it would be the first step toward the completion of a new arena for the Islanders to play in, as well as a minor-league baseball stadium nearby.

County officials who support the effort say the vote is needed to give officials enough time to build a replacement for the aging Nassau Veterans Memorial Coliseum before the Isles' lease expires in 2015. Without a new building, team owner Charles Wang has said he may have to move the team out of Nassau County, either to another site on Long Island or to another market.

"Nervous I think is probably the best way to do it," Wang said last week of his feelings about the election. "I think it is going to be a tight race. We believe we have something very special here. We want the people to go out there and vote -- and vote yes, obviously."

Report: Nabokov ready to join Islanders

Monday, 08.01.2011 / 4:08 PM / 2011 Offseason News

The New York Islanders could have some crowded creases in training camp with veteran goalie Evgeni Nabokov telling Newsday that he will attend training camp intent on earning a spot on the team, provided he's not traded in advance.

"What I want is to get back to the NHL, whether that's with the Islanders or another team," Nabokov told Islanders' beat reporter Katie Strang. "If the Islanders think I can help them, that's fine with me."

After playing nine full seasons in San Jose, Nabokov signed a multi-year contract to play in the KHL with SKA St. Petersburg last summer. However, his contract was terminated in December and Nabokov tried to get back into the NHL.

The Detroit Red Wings signed him to a one-year contract worth a reported $570,000, but the Collective Bargaining Agreement stipulated that Nabokov had to be placed on waivers before he could join the Red Wings. That gave every team below the Red Wings in the standings a chance to claim him.

Burns' comfort in San Jose led to extension

Monday, 08.01.2011 / 2:39 PM / 2011 Offseason News

Dan Rosen - Senior Writer

Brent Burns' family trip to San Jose this summer made signing a contract extension with his new club one of the easiest decisions he's ever made.

Without ever having played a game in Sharks' teal, Burns signed on to play with the club through the 2016-17 season by autographing his name onto a five-year contract extension that is reportedly worth $28.8 million. Burns still has one year and $3.55 million remaining on the four-year contract he signed with the Minnesota Wild in 2007, so his new contract won't kick in until the 2012-13 season.

The Sharks acquired Burns from the Wild on June 24 in exchange for right wing Devin Setoguchi, prospect Charlie Coyle and a first-round draft pick.

"After the trade went through we went down to San Jose and it was awesome," Burns said on a conference call Monday. "The city was great and the organization was just unbelievable how they treated us. With that excitement building for our family, it really made getting traded for the first time easier. Having the chance to sign the extension, it was a no-brainer for us. We have a little bit of security for our family and now I can just focus on playing hockey."

Devils to buy out White, Hunter contract

Monday, 08.01.2011 / 12:39 PM / 2011 Offseason News

The New Jersey Devils have placed defenseman Colin White and forward Trent Hunter on waivers with the purpose of buying out their contracts. They will become unrestricted free agents.

According to, White has one year and $3 million left on his contract while Hunter has two years and $4 million total left on his contract.

AHL's Chicago Wolves name MacTavish coach

Monday, 08.01.2011 / 12:24 PM / 2011 Offseason News

Adam Kimelman - Deputy Managing Editor

Former Edmonton Oilers coach Craig MacTavish was hired Monday as coach of the Chicago Wolves of the American Hockey League.

The Wolves are the AHL affiliate of the Vancouver Canucks.

"We are thrilled to have Craig join our organization," said Canucks General Manager Mike Gillis. "He brings a wealth of knowledge and experience that will be invaluable as we continue to develop our players and create a winning environment in Chicago."

Malkin kicking rehabilitation into high gear

Monday, 08.01.2011 / 10:07 AM / 2011 Offseason News

Adam Kimelman - Deputy Managing Editor

While this technically is the offseason, there isn't a lot of "off" time for Evgeni Malkin.

The Pittsburgh Penguins star center has been working every day rehabilitating a serious knee injury that curtailed his 2010-11 season and getting into the best shape possible for the upcoming season.

"I have known 'Geno' (Malkin) for five years now and I have never seen him this committed to getting healthier and wanting to do well," Penguins strength and conditioning coach Mike Kadar, who has been training Malkin for the past two weeks in Russia, told the Penguins' website. "It has been an eye-opener for me with his determination and work ethic. He is committed to it every day, and with no short cuts."

Offseason assessment: Pacific Division

Saturday, 07.30.2011 / 9:00 AM / 2011 Offseason News

Dan Rosen - Senior Writer

It'll take until at least Christmas to know how the decisions made by all 30 teams will alter the playing field in the NHL for the 2011-12 season. But with the offseason news in quiet mode, there's no better time to look back at what has transpired and look ahead to what could be in store for next season. is here to take you on a tour of all six divisions, providing a breakdown of every team, including their additions, subtractions and up-and-comers. 

Report: Kovalev heading to KHL

Friday, 07.29.2011 / 1:52 PM / 2011 Offseason News

If reports are true, Alex Kovalev's NHL career could be over.

The website Sports Express is reporting Kovalev has agreed to a two-year contract with Atlant Mytishchi of the Kontinental Hockey League. The 38-year-old Kovalev will be 40 when that contract expires.

Kovalev has played for the New York Rangers, Pittsburgh Penguins, Montreal Canadiens and Ottawa Senators during his 17-year career. He was most recently with the Penguins for a second stint after he was dealt by the Senators at the trade deadline. He had 16 goals and 34 points in 54 games with the Senators and Penguins this past season.
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