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First-round picks in 2014 NHL Draft

Saturday, 06.28.2014 / 12:14 AM / 2014 NHL Draft - Philadelphia - June 27-28, 2014

Here is a look at the first-round selections in the 2014 NHL Draft, picked Friday at Wells Fargo Center.

1. FLA  Aaron Ekblad, D, Barrie Colts (OHL)

The defenseman of the year in the OHL finished with 36 goals, 91 points and 118 penalty minutes in his third season with the Colts. The 6-foot-3, 216-pound right shot will join a strong young group of blueliners, including Mike Matheson, Ian McCoshen and Alex Petrovic. Ekblad was the first defenseman drafted No. 1 in eight years.

2. FLA  Sam Reinhart, C, Kootenay Ice (WHL)

From a family of a hockey-playing father and three brothers, the youngest finished fourth in the Western Hockey League with 105 points (36 goals, 69 assists) in 60 regular-season games. He has 101 goals, 254 points and a plus-52 rating in 203 regular-season games spanning three seasons.

3. FLA  Leon Draisaitl, C, Prince Albert Raiders (WHL)

Projected as a Jaromir Jagr-type performer, the 6-foot-1, 204 pound left shot had 38 goals, 105 points in 64 games. The Oilers needed to add a workhorse forward to skate alongside Taylor Hall, Ryan Nugent-Hopkins and Nail Yakupov.

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Penguins add Hornqvist, Spaling in trade for Neal

Saturday, 06.28.2014 / 12:13 AM / News

Dan Rosen - NHL.com Senior Writer

PHILADELPHIA -- Jim Rutherford has been talking about creating balance in the Pittsburgh Penguins' forward group since taking over as general manager earlier this month. The general manager thinks he took a long step toward accomplishing his goal Friday night.

Rutherford traded former 40-goal scorer James Neal to the Nashville Predators in exchange for forwards Patric Hornqvist and Nick Spaling during the first round of the 2014 NHL Draft at Wells Fargo Center.

"I probably talked to about 15 teams; those calls were mostly initiated by them," Rutherford said. "I had a few offers. We like Hornqvist; he's an all-around player. We like Spaling; he can play all three positions."

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Sanheim pick continues Flyers' focus on defense

Saturday, 06.28.2014 / 12:05 AM / 2014 NHL Draft - Philadelphia - June 27-28, 2014

Sean McCullen - NHL.com Staff Writer

PHILADELPHIA -- Travis Sanheim got his first taste of how loud Philadelphia Flyers fans can be Friday night, and he liked what he heard.

After the "Let's go Flyers!" chants had subsided, Flyers general manager Ron Hextall called Sanheim's name as the No. 17 pick at the 2014 NHL Draft, held at Wells Fargo Center for the first time.


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Analysis: Decisive GM good sign for Canucks

Friday, 06.27.2014 / 10:36 PM / NHL Insider

Dan Rosen - NHL.com Senior Writer

PHILADELPHIA -- Vancouver Canucks general manager Jim Benning reshaped their roster and possibly the direction of the franchise in a span of a few hours with a series of trades Friday afternoon.

He did it for the benefit of the team, not to send any messages about what his tenure will be like.

"That didn't really come into my thinking," Benning said of any potential message sending.

The message was sent nonetheless. Before the 2014 NHL Draft began at Wells Fargo Center, Benning showed he will be in control and he will be decisive.

Benning made the biggest splash of the day when he traded center Ryan Kesler to the Anaheim Ducks and defenseman Jason Garrison to the Tampa Bay Lightning, bringing back center Nick Bonino, defenseman Luca Sbisa and right wing Derek Dorsett. Perhaps as important, Benning acquired the 24th and 50th picks in the draft and freed up approximately $4 million in salary-cap space.

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Hat trick of firsts highlights opening round of draft

Friday, 06.27.2014 / 10:24 PM / 2014 NHL Draft - Philadelphia - June 27-28, 2014

Mike G. Morreale - NHL.com Staff Writer

PHILADELPHIA -- A hat trick of firsts took place in the first round of the 2014 NHL Draft at Wells Fargo Center on Friday.

It began when Florida Panthers general manager Dale Tallon ended months of speculation by taking Aaron Ekblad of the Barrie Colts in the Ontario Hockey League, the first defenseman selected No. 1 at the draft in eight years. The Buffalo Sabres then made center Sam Reinhart of the Kootenay Ice in the Western Hockey League the highest-drafted Reinhart in family history with the No. 2 choice.

The Edmonton Oilers kept the theme of firsts going when GM Craig MacTavish made center Leon Draisaitl of the Prince Albert Raiders (WHL) the highest German-trained player selected at the draft with the No. 3 choice.


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Defenseman Barberio re-signs with Lightning

Friday, 06.27.2014 / 7:52 PM / News

NHL.com

The Tampa Bay Lightning on Friday re-signed defenseman Mark Barberio to a one-year, one-way contract. No financial terms were disclosed.

Barberio, 24, played in 49 games for the Lightning during the 2013-14 regular season, scoring five goals finishing with 10 points and 28 penalty minutes. He was tied for fourth in the NHL among rookie defensemen with a plus-10 rating. He was scoreless in two Stanley Cup Playoff games.

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Coyotes initiate buyout of center Mike Ribeiro

Friday, 06.27.2014 / 7:41 PM / News

NHL.com

The Arizona Coyotes announced Friday they have initiated a buyout of the remaining three years of center Mike Ribeiro's contract.

Ribeiro had 16 goals and 31 assists in 80 games for the Coyotes in 2013-14 after signing a four-year contract last July. He becomes an unrestricted free agent and can sign with any team other than the Coyotes.

Ribeiro, 34, has 202 goals and 656 points in 865 NHL games.

In an interview with The Arizona Republic, general manager Don Maloney said behavorial issues with Ribiero led to the buyout after one year of the deal.

"Mike had some real behavior issues last year with us I felt we could not tolerate going forward," Maloney told the newspaper. "To his credit, he has been getting help this offseason and obviously would hope he continues. But at the end of the year and all the background checking and what happened, we felt that for us to move forward, we couldn't have him a part of this team."

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Ducks get Kesler in trade from Canucks

Friday, 06.27.2014 / 6:46 PM / News

Dan Rosen - NHL.com Senior Writer

PHILADELPHIA -- Ryan Kesler did his research and decided he has a better chance of winning the Stanley Cup with the Anaheim Ducks than with the Vancouver Canucks. That's the reason, and the only reason, the center waived his no-trade clause to permit a trade to the Ducks on Friday.

Vancouver traded Kesler and a third-round pick in the 2015 NHL Draft to Anaheim for center Nick Bonino, defenseman Luca Sbisa and Anaheim's first-round and third-round picks in the 2014 NHL Draft (Nos. 24 and 85).

Kesler has two years and $10 million ($5 million salary-cap charge) remaining on his contract.

"I'm going to Anaheim to win a championship," Kesler said. "That's going to be my sole goal and my team's sole goal. That's basically it."

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Sharks GM says team needs better chemistry

Friday, 06.27.2014 / 6:34 PM / News

Arpon Basu - Managing Editor LNH.com

PHILADELPHIA -- San Jose Sharks general manager Doug Wilson is well aware of his team's strengths and how close it is to attaining the ultimate goal of winning a Stanley Cup. But he is equally aware of his team's weaknesses, and addressing them is what Wilson meant when he said he was undertaking a rebuild of the Sharks.

It's not often you see a team that finished fifth overall in the NHL standings undergo an offseason rebuild, but Wilson was told by his players following the Sharks' seven-game loss to the Los Angeles Kings in the first round of the Stanley Cup Playoffs that there were issues in the dressing room that needed to corrected.

Speaking before the 2014 NHL Draft at Wells Fargo Center on Friday, Wilson summarized those issues as a feeling that the players were "co-workers, not teammates" and that is the main thing that separated the Sharks from the Kings.


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Lightning acquire defenseman Garrison from Canucks

Friday, 06.27.2014 / 6:18 PM / News

NHL.com

The Tampa Bay Lightning on Friday acquired defenseman Jason Garrison in a trade with the Vancouver Canucks.

The Lightning receive the rights to forward Jeff Costello and a seventh-round pick in the 2015 NHL Draft in exchange for their second-round pick (No. 50) in the 2014 draft.

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