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2014 NHL Draft
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Bardreau focused on Cornell, then picking NHL team

Saturday, 07.19.2014 / 3:00 AM / NHL Insider

Matt Kalman - NHL.com Correspondent

WILMINGTON, Mass. -- Cole Bardreau is having a better summer this year than last.

That's not surprising, considering one year ago he was recovering from a broken neck he sustained from an illegal check playing for Cornell against Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute.

This summer the forward is touring NHL development camps. Bardreau participated in Detroit Red Wings prospect camp early in July and spent time at Boston Bruins development camp.

Summer camps like those are important to a player who was passed over in the NHL Draft a few times and will be a free agent when his college career is complete.

"I've been joking around with some of the guys," Bardreau said. "You think you're prepared and then you come in here and you're huffing and puffing. So I think it just shows you that you have to get to that next level. Especially going to two camps for two weeks, I think that helps you get in shape and be just that much more ready when it comes to season time. So a lot of people have slower starts, it takes them a few games to get going, and that's kind of tough for college guys when you don't play so many games. So I think that it kind of helps you be in shape right away and ready to go."

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Defenseman Kulikov signs with Panthers

Friday, 07.18.2014 / 10:52 PM / NHL Free Agency 2014

NHL.com

Restricted free agent defenseman Dmitry Kulikov signed a three-year contract with the Florida Panthers on Friday. Financial terms were not released, but TSN reported the total value to be $13 million.

"He has so much ability and this is a fair contract, it's what what guys around the League are getting paid," general manager Dale Tallon told the Miami Herald. "Now it's time for him to make a statement and be a leader on our team. He has all the ability in the world. He just has to channel it in the right direction.

"We're happy to have him in the fold. He's a great kid, still a young guy. He has tremendous ability. It's hard to find those guys."

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Del Zotto determined to prove doubters wrong

Friday, 07.18.2014 / 8:34 PM / News

NHL.com Staff

Free agent defenseman Michael Del Zotto is looking for a job, not only to continue his NHL career.

"I'm just waiting for the right opportunity to prove myself again, and prove everyone who's doubted me wrong," the 24-year-old told Sportsnet on Thursday.

Del Zotto finished last season with the Nashville Predators after being traded by the New York Rangers. In Nashville, he was scratched from four of the final five games and finished with one goal and four assists in 25 games.

His total of 16 points was well off his career-high 41 of two seasons back.

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Blackhawks confident they can get salary cap to fit

Friday, 07.18.2014 / 7:47 PM / NHL Insider

Brian Hedger - NHL.com Correspondent

CHICAGO -- The goal hasn't changed for the Chicago Blackhawks, but the roster must before another chase for the Stanley Cup begins.

Brad Richards
Center - CHI
GOALS: 20 | ASST: 31 | PTS: 51
SOG: 259 | +/-: -8
Blackhawks general manager Stan Bowman doesn't need to pick apart the bulk of his team, like he did after winning the Cup in 2010, but somebody under contract won't be in Chicago for the 2014-15 season thanks to another salary-cap issue.

Following Bowman's free-agent acquisition of veteran center Brad Richards on July 1, the Blackhawks are over the NHL's $69 million hard salary cap by $2.2 million, according to CapGeek.com.

"We certainly have to be ready to go by October, that's the goal," Bowman said Friday at the annual Blackhawks Convention at the Chicago Hilton. "A lot of things change between now and then. You have to display some patience."

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Despres signs two-year contract with Penguins

Friday, 07.18.2014 / 5:51 PM / News

NHL.com

Defenseman Simon Despres has signed a two-year contract with the Pittsburgh Penguins worth $1.8 million, the team announced Friday.

Pittsburgh's first-round pick (No. 30) in the 2009 NHL Draft, Despres split last season between the Penguins and their American Hockey League affiliate in Wilkes-Barre/Scranton. He had five assists in 34 games with Pittsburgh and six goals and 22 points in 35 AHL games. He had two goals and nine points in 17 Calder Cup playoff games.

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Caron, five others re-sign with Bruins

Friday, 07.18.2014 / 4:40 PM / NHL Free Agency 2014

NHL.com

The Boston Bruins on Friday signed forwards Jordan Caron, Craig Cunningham and Tyler Randell, along with defenseman Tommy Cross, each to a one-year contract. The Bruins also signed defenseman Zach Trotman to a two-year contract.

The Bruins also agreed to terms with forward Justin Florek on a one-year, two-way contract.

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Penguins name Recchi player development coach

Friday, 07.18.2014 / 3:04 PM / News

NHL.com

Mark Recchi has been named player development coach for the Pittsburgh Penguins, the team announced Friday. Recchi, who played three separate stints with the Penguins, spent the past two seasons as an adviser to the Dallas Stars hockey operations department.

Recchi, 46, will be in charge of helping to develop prospects throughout the Penguins organization. Recchi spent the past two years working with the Penguins Elite youth hockey program.

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Perlini signs entry-level contract with Coyotes

Friday, 07.18.2014 / 2:19 PM / News

NHL.com

Brendan Perlini, the Arizona Coyotes' first-round pick at the 2014 NHL Draft, has signed a three-year, entry-level contract, the team announced Friday. Financial terms were not disclosed.

The Coyotes selected Perlini with the 12th pick last month after he had 34 goals and 71 points in 58 games last season with the Niagara IceDogs of the Ontario Hockey League.

"We are very pleased to sign Brendan to an entry-level contract," Coyotes general manager Don Maloney said. "Brendan is a strong skater with great size (6-foot-2, 205 pounds) and skill. He had an impressive prospect development camp and we look forward to watching his development."

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Davidson says Blue Jackets ready to make statement

Friday, 07.18.2014 / 2:16 PM / News

NHL.com

Other than acquiring forward Scott Hartnell in a trade with the Philadelphia Flyers on June 23, the Columbus Blue Jackets didn't make any major moves this summer. But Columbus president of hockey operations John Davidson sees a fully formed team capable of taking a big step during the 2014-15 season.

"This is a team that I think now is being recognized not just as a team that is young and up-and-coming, it's a pretty good hockey club. We have a chance here to make a real good statement with this upcoming season," Davidson told the Blue Jackets website. "I like this hockey club. I like it a lot. I like its character, I like the way it plays, I like the intestinal fortitude it has, I like how it sticks up for each other. I like all aspects of it. We have a chance to be a very good club."

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Sabres sign forward Ennis to multiyear contract

Friday, 07.18.2014 / 1:45 PM / NHL Free Agency 2014

NHL.com

Forward Tyler Ennis signed a multiyear contract with the Buffalo Sabres, the team announced Thursday.

Terms were not disclosed, but multiple media outlets reported it's for five years and $23 million.

"It certainly wasn't straightforward," Sabres general manager Tim Murray said Friday. "The day we signed him we were calling back and forth every 10 minutes. And then we got to a point where we thought, both sides moved, but we got to a point where we thought our last offer was very credible and in line with a lot of players of his caliber in the League."

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Quote of the Day

What we expected is what we got. Very mature young individual that's focused. He is on the right track. He's not only a great hockey individual, but he's a good person off the ice. He seemed to take a leadership role with this group right off the hop and ran away with it, and was vocal, was respectful, was everything it takes to be a Panther. His future looks bright.

— Florida Panthers director of player development Brian Skrudland on defenseman Aaron Ekblad's performance at development camp