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NHL Insider

Staal 'ecstatic' to join Hurricanes, older brother

Friday, 07.27.2012 / 4:33 PM / NHL Insider

NHL.com

Jordan Staal
Center - CAR
GOALS: 25 | ASST: 25 | PTS: 50
SOG: 149 | +/-: 11
Jordan Staal would much rather play with his brother than against him.

Traded on his wedding day in June, he became teammates with older brother Eric Staal on the Carolina Hurricanes.

"We knew the family thing was a very intriguing part of this whole thing," Jordan said Friday at a press conference, according to the Raleigh News & Observer. "To play against two brothers in the NHL is pretty awesome, but to play alongside your brother, both in the primes of our careers, is very, very exciting. As a family, for me and Eric especially, we're ecstatic to have this come together as it did."

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Canucks found new goal song to be Clutch

Friday, 07.27.2012 / 3:13 PM / NHL Insider

Shawn P. Roarke - NHL.com Senior Managing Editor

The rock band Clutch is known for its high-energy shows, which are fueled by the passion the band's fans bring to each show.

That passion carried into the hockey world this past season and gave Clutch's lead singer, Neil Fallon, a present he could not have ever imagined.

During the past summer, one of the band's fans nominated "Electric Worry" by Clutch as the new goal-celebration song for the Vancouver Canucks for the 2011-12 season. Game presentation officials from the team checked out the song, off the 2007 compact disc, From Beale Street to Oblivion, and found what they craved.

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Dubinsky excited to be a Blue Jacket

Wednesday, 07.25.2012 / 8:40 PM / NHL Insider

Mike Battaglino - NHL.com Staff Writer

Brandon Dubinsky, one of the newest Columbus Blue Jackets, doesn't expect to be part of a trade rumor again anytime soon.

"Now that it's said and done, it is a bit of a relief that I'm not going to have to deal with those ... at least for the next month or so," Dubinsky said with a laugh at a press conference in Columbus on Wednesday.

Brandon Dubinsky
Center - CBJ
GOALS: 10 | ASST: 24 | PTS: 34
SOG: 140 | +/-: 16
Dubinsky, forward Artem Anisimov and defenseman Tim Erixon, along with a first-round draft pick, were sent to the Blue Jackets by the New York Rangers on Monday in the long-expected trade for forward Rick Nash.

"I'm excited to be here and to be a Blue Jacket," Dubinsky said, according to a transcript provided by the team. "I've had an opportunity to talk with some of the guys here, and they all love it here in Columbus. The best part about it right now is the youth we have, and the enthusiasm that we have -- not to mention the skill level that I think this team has. It's underrated, and I think we're going to have a good season."

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Weber prepared to help Predators chase Cup

Wednesday, 07.25.2012 / 6:34 PM / NHL Insider

Adam Kimelman - NHL.com Deputy Managing Editor

With the business side of hockey out of the way, Shea Weber is happy he's free to focus on one thing now: winning.

One day after the Nashville Predators chose to match the 14-year, $110 million offer sheet the defenseman signed with the Philadelphia Flyers, Weber said Wednesday he is excited to know he'll likely be spending the rest of his career with the organization that chose him in the second round of the 2003 NHL Draft.

Shea Weber
Defense - NSH
GOALS: 19 | ASST: 30 | PTS: 49
SOG: 230 | +/-: 21
"It's a very exciting time for the Predators organization and myself," Weber said on a conference call. "It's a big step in the right direction. Ownership showed a commitment here in the last week. Now going forward I can focus on the important stuff, getting ready for the season and getting ready to go this year."

Weber, a restricted free agent, signed the largest offer sheet in NHL history July 18, giving the Predators until July 25 to match. Nashville general manager David Poile had said all along the franchise would match any offer sheet that came Weber's way, and the two-time Norris Trophy runner-up said he was happy to see it live up to its word.

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Beaulieu sees big things for Yakupov, Galchenyuk

Wednesday, 07.25.2012 / 3:07 PM / NHL Insider

Tal Pinchevsky - NHL.com Staff Writer

In a memorable 2012 NHL Draft that saw a record-tying 13 defensemen taken in the first round (including eight of the top 10 picks), it was two forwards who also made history. And the coach who watched them play last season sees big things for both -- even if it potentially comes at the expense of his own team.

With Sarnia Sting teammates Nail Yakupov and Alex Galchenyuk selected first by Edmonton and third by Montreal respectively, it marked the first time teammates had been selected in the top three since the Sedin brothers were taken second and third in 1999. The last time two Canadian junior teammates were taken in the top three at the Draft was 1974, when Wilf Paiement and Richard Hampton of the St. Catherines Black Hawks were drafted by the Kansas City Scouts and California Seals, respectively.

"We had a pretty good indication that Yaky [Yakupov] was going to go number one. Gally [Galchenyuk], we didn't know. But we knew that Montreal liked him a lot," said Jacques Beaulieu, the Sarnia head coach and general manager who coached both players last season. "It's been hectic for the organization, but also positive."

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Rick Nash getting used to being a Ranger

Wednesday, 07.25.2012 / 3:02 PM / NHL Insider

Dave Lozo - NHL.com Staff Writer

Rick Nash
Left Wing - NYR
GOALS: 30 | ASST: 29 | PTS: 59
SOG: 306 | +/-: -19

GREENBURGH, N.Y. -- It took only a couple conversations with a former Ranger to help convince Rick Nash that New York was the place for him.

Vinny Prospal, who spent two seasons with the New York Rangers before signing with the Blue Jackets last season, sang the praises of his former club, the organization and coach John Tortorella. Prospal was still in contact with Nash on Wednesday morning, two days after the blockbuster deal that sent one of the game's top scorers from Columbus to New York.

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Poile, Preds thrilled to have Weber long-term

Wednesday, 07.25.2012 / 2:29 PM / NHL Insider

Adam Kimelman - NHL.com Deputy Managing Editor

Nashville Predators GM David Poile compared signing Shea Weber to a marriage. Considering the length of the contract Weber agreed to, it's not a bad comparison.

The Predators announced Tuesday they had agreed to match the 14-year, $110 million offer sheet Weber had signed with the Philadelphia Flyers on July 18, retaining their team captain through the 2025-26 season.

"He [Weber] just got engaged, he's going to get married and hopefully that'll be a lifetime for him," Poile told the team's website. "We just signed him for 14 years and that's pretty well a lifetime and a career for a hockey player. It's a marriage."

Poile said the decision to match the offer sheet was one that involved all parts of the organization because of the importance of the decision.

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With Weber out, Flyers will look from within

Wednesday, 07.25.2012 / 12:56 PM / NHL Insider

Mike G. Morreale - NHL.com Staff Writer

So now that the dust has settled from the Shea Weber saga, Philadelphia Flyers general manager Paul Holmgren feels it's time to move forward.

The Nashville Predators on Tuesday put to bed any visions of Weber donning a Flyers jersey next season when they matched Philadelphia's 14-year, $110-million offer sheet, thus retaining their three-time NHL All-Star.

Shea Weber
Shea Weber - 2011-12
Defense - NSH
GOALS: 19 | ASST: 30 | PTS: 49
SOG: 230 | +/-: 21

Holmgren said he learned of the Predators decision to match at 3:15 p.m. ET on Tuesday and his initial reaction was "disappointment."

"We were hopeful they wouldn't match, but obviously they did," Holmgren told reporters via a conference call Wednesday. "We tried to add, in our minds, the best defenseman in the game to a good, young, up-and-coming team, and it didn't work."

So in a span of 21 days, Holmgren and the Flyers were rebuffed in their attempts to sign unrestricted free agent defensemen Ryan Suter and Matt Carle, forward Zach Parise and restricted free agent Weber.

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Brandon Sutter introduced, excited about new team

Wednesday, 07.25.2012 / 12:53 PM / NHL Insider

John Kreiser - NHL.com Columnist

Brandon Sutter has had a month to get over the shock of being traded for the first time in his hockey career. Now he says he's excited at the thought of playing with his new team, the Pittsburgh Penguins.

"I'm looking forward to it," he said Wednesday during a media conference call. "At first it was tough -- it was the first time I'd ever been traded, I was in a place where I was comfortable.

"It's a tough thing to go through, no matter who you are. At first it kind of takes you aback and it's a little disappointing, but you start to think about it and you get excited. Once I meet the guys and start skating it will be awesome. I'm getting really pumped about it."

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A look at some of the greatest scorers in NHL history

Tuesday, 07.24.2012 / 1:50 PM / NHL Insider

John Kreiser - NHL.com Columnist

A sniper is the guy who always seems to have the puck on his tape when the game is on the line. He's the guy who keeps goaltenders awake at night with his lightning-quick release and corner-picking accuracy. The puck is barely on his stick before it's on the way to (and into) the net.

Not every big scorer is a sniper. Gordie Howe, No. 2 on the all-time goal-scoring list, was a power forward whose combination of skill and strength was unique. Wayne Gretzky, the NHL's all-time leader in goals, is a category unto himself, since he scored goals in just about any way imaginable but was even better at setting up teammates than at turning on the red light himself.

Snipers generally need some assistance -- they're the kind of guys who finish a play, not the ones who start it. But in an era when every goal is precious, a top sniper is a must-have.

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He scores 50 goals, they go in, they go in, and they go in. And I think, 'Why can't I do that?'

— Capitals forward Brooks Laich on teammate Alex Ovechkin, who scored his 50th goal of the season Tuesday in a 4-2 win vs. the Hurricanes
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