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2014 NHL Draft
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Stempniak sees Rangers as fit for his game

Friday, 07.25.2014 / 9:42 PM / News

NHL.com

Lee Stempniak comes to the New York Rangers with up-close knowledge after playing for the Pittsburgh Penguins and being eliminated in a seven-game playoff series last season.

"The thing that stands out to me from that series -- as well as their great run last spring -- is just how resilient the Rangers are," the forward told Blueshirts United in a story published Friday. "That and the fact that Henrik Lundqvist is one of the best, if not the best, goaltenders in the world. ... They also have great depth, got contributions from everyone. I'm looking forward to joining them."

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Bellemore agrees to terms with Hurricanes

Friday, 07.25.2014 / 9:04 PM / News

NHL.com

Defenseman Brett Bellemore has agreed to terms on one-year, two-way contract with the Carolina Hurricanes, the team announced Friday.

The Hurricanes said it will pay Bellemore $600,000 on the NHL level, or $175,000 at the American Hockey League level.

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Blackhawks' Richards dreamed of being their goalie

Friday, 07.25.2014 / 8:55 PM / NHL Insider

NHL.com

Brad Richards
Center - CHI
GOALS: 20 | ASST: 31 | PTS: 51
SOG: 259 | +/-: -8
Brad Richards always thought he might play for the Chicago Blackhawks one day.

But idolizing Eddie Belfour, Richards wanted it to be at another position.

"I always wanted to be a goalie, but my dad, Glen, would never let me," Richards told Blackhawks team historian Bob Verdi in an interview on their website published Friday.

"He played goalie a bit himself, but he wouldn’t have it. I liked all the equipment, the gear, and whenever he wasn’t around, I was a goalie in street hockey. But he wouldn’t allow it, and I cried my eyes out when he said no."

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Virtanen, No. 6 pick, signs with Canucks

Friday, 07.25.2014 / 7:32 PM / News

NHL.com

Jake Virtanen, the sixth player taken in the 2014 NHL Draft, has signed with the Vancouver Canucks, the team announced Friday. Terms were not disclosed.

"Such an honour to sign with the Vancouver Canucks!," Virtanen wrote on his official Twitter account. "I'd like to thank everybody who's helped me get to this point especially my family!!"

Virtanen, a 17-year-old right wing, had 45 goals and 71 points in 71 games last season with the Calgary Hitmen of the Western Hockey League. He had three goals and three assists in seven games to help Canada win the bronze medal at the 2014 IIHF World Under-18 Championship.

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Reimer, Maple Leafs agree on two-year contract

Friday, 07.25.2014 / 7:23 PM / NHL Free Agency 2014

NHL.com

Goaltender James Reimer and the Toronto Maple Leafs agreed to a two-year contract, the team said Friday. No financial terms were disclosed, but Elliotte Friedman of "Hockey Night in Canada" reported the contract has an average annual value of $2.3 million.

Reimer and the Maple Leafs had a salary arbitration hearing scheduled for July 28.

"He never said, 'Get me out of here,'" general manager Dave Nonis told the Toronto Star. "What he did ask was for us to explore opportunities that would make sense for both sides. We did. I went back to him and said, 'I don't have something that I would feel comfortable doing and we prefer to sign you.'

"We both felt him coming back was good for us and for him. He wouldn't have signed a two-year deal if he didn't feel comfortable coming back to Toronto."

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Defenseman Sarich improving after cycling accident

Friday, 07.25.2014 / 5:54 PM / News

NHL.com

Veteran defenseman Cory Sarich is improving after being injured in a cycling accident July 21, he said Friday on Twitter.

"I am up and moving and may get to go home today," Sarich wrote. "I am extremely blessed to be sitting here sending everyone an update."

Sarich, 35, was struck by a motor vehicle while training in Invermere, British Columbia, agent Tim Hodgson said in a statement released by the Colorado Avalanche, for whom Sarich played last season.

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Smashfest raises $140,000 for charities

Friday, 07.25.2014 / 4:13 PM / News

NHL.com

With New York Rangers forward Dominic Moore serving as host, the annual Smashfest charity pingpong challenge in Toronto raised $140,000 Thursday night, according to the National Hockey League Players' Association.

Those funds will be contributed to charities assisting in the research of concussions and rare cancers. One of those charities is the Katie Moore Foundation, which was founded by Moore in memory of his late wife, who died Jan. 7, 2013 from a rare liver disease.

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Flames sign Sam Bennett, fourth pick in draft

Friday, 07.25.2014 / 2:49 PM / News

NHL.com

Sam Bennett, the fourth player taken in the 2014 NHL Draft, signed a three-year, entry-level contract with the Calgary Flames, the team said Friday. No financial terms were disclosed.

"It really is just a dream come true," Bennett told the Flames website. "It feels unbelievable. It's something I've dreamed of my whole life and now that I've finally done it, it really is amazing.

"It really is surreal. When I did finally put the pen to the paper it was an amazing feeling. You know, it really is. It feels unbelievable."

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Sharks' Couture still recovering from loss to Kings

Friday, 07.25.2014 / 2:17 PM / NHL Insider

NHL.com

Logan Couture
Center - SJS
GOALS: 23 | ASST: 31 | PTS: 54
SOG: 233 | +/-: 21

Logan Couture's right hand and psyche still bear the scars of the San Jose Sharks' loss to the Los Angeles Kings in the first round of the Stanley Cup Playoffs.

His hand was injured during the series in a fight with Kings center Mike Richards. He's recovered slowly but expects to be OK by training camp. Recovering emotionally from surrendering a 3-0 series lead against the Kings could take a bit longer.

"I just think about how much it hurts," he said Thursday at the Smashfest charity pingpong event in Toronto, according to The Canadian Press. "The feelings aren't going to go away, probably never. It's just something that sticks with you for a long time."

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Tippett eager to get Coyotes' newcomers on ice

Friday, 07.25.2014 / 1:50 PM / NHL Insider

NHL.com

Arizona Coyotes coach Dave Tippett has no intention of seeing his club miss the Stanley Cup Playoffs for a third straight season. He's optimistic the four veterans acquired by general manager Don Maloney will help.

The Coyotes added veteran forwards Sam Gagner and B.J. Crombeen in a trade with the Tampa Bay Lightning on June 29, then signed goaltender Devan Dubnyk and forward Joe Vitale as free agents. Gagner is expected to center one of the top two lines, and Vitale and Crombeen will battle for bottom-six roles. Dubnyk is expected to back up starter Mike Smith.

Arizona is trying to end a two-year absence from the playoffs after finishing two points behind the Dallas Stars for the final wild card in the Western Conference last season.

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Quote of the Day

I just think about how much it hurts. The feelings aren't going to go away, probably never. It's just something that sticks with you for a long time.

— San Jose forward Logan Couture to The Canadian Press on the Sharks' first-round loss to the Kings after taking a 3-0 series lead