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2015 NHL Draft
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NHL Insider

Bruins GM Sweeney says team not rebuilding

Tuesday, 06.30.2015 / 3:14 PM / NHL Insider

Matt Kalman - NHL.com Correspondent

BOSTON -- Boston Bruins general manager Don Sweeney said Tuesday they are not in rebuilding mode.

During the past week the Bruins traded forward Milan Lucic and defenseman Dougie Hamilton for draft picks and prospects. Lucic's 44 points were third on the Bruins this season, and Hamilton's 42 points led Boston defensemen.

"I don't think it's a rebuild. We didn't strip this down," said Sweeney, who was promoted last month from assistant general manager to replace Peter Chiarelli. "We have a tremendous core group of guys that are going to obviously carry an even heavier load here in the short term while these other kids can come in and start to take footing. ... I've always referenced that we need patience in terms of development and then we also, we can't be impatient in terms of the integration."

Sweeney made another trade Tuesday, sending goaltender Martin Jones to the San Jose Sharks for a first-round pick in the 2016 NHL Draft and the rights to forward prospect Sean Kuraly.

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Kopitar, Stamkos headline UFA class for 2016

Tuesday, 06.30.2015 / 2:00 PM / NHL Insider

Corey Masisak - NHL.com Staff Writer

Role players and depth defensemen are going to be the biggest currency of the day Wednesday when the 2015 NHL free agent market opens.

A big reason for that is most of the impact players who could be free agents have already signed new contracts with their current employers. Players in the free agent class of 2016 can begin signing extensions Wednesday, so it's time to take a look at the biggest names who can become unrestricted and restricted free agents a year from now.

There are plenty of impact players on these two lists, and any number of them signing a new contract could end up being the biggest news of the day and have the greatest lasting impact on a franchise.

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O'Reilly excited to take on leadership role with Sabres

Tuesday, 06.30.2015 / 1:18 PM / NHL Insider

Kristen Nelson - NHL.com Staff Writer

Buffalo Sabres center Ryan O'Reilly, acquired from the Colorado Avalanche in a draft-day trade Friday, will be looked upon to help their future franchise center to acclimate.

With forward Jack Eichel set to take the spotlight after the Sabres selected him with the No. 2 pick in the 2015 NHL Draft, coach Dan Bylsma will have O'Reilly, a six-year NHL veteran at the age of 24, to mentor him.

"It's flattering to be looked at that way," O'Reilly said Monday. "To come in with confidence in myself and them having confidence in me, it's definitely a huge honor and I'm looking forward to it."

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Eakins excited for AHL return with Gulls, Ducks

Sunday, 06.28.2015 / 3:00 AM / NHL Insider

Curtis Zupke - NHL.com Correspondent

ANAHEIM -- When Dallas Eakins was fired by the Edmonton Oilers last December, he retreated to his home in Vancouver and re-discovered a missing piece of his life: His family.

Gone was the scrutiny of trying to resurrect a storied franchise. No more five-game, eight-day road trips. Eakins settled into a normal life after coming to terms with his termination.

“I can’t even put it into words,” Eakins said. “It was very hard at the start. Time heals wounds. You know you’re away from the family. [I have] two little girls. I didn't know exactly how much I was missing out until these last six months. It’s a time I will never forget.”

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Lehner healthy, excited for fresh start with Sabres

Saturday, 06.27.2015 / 11:42 PM / NHL Insider

NHL.com

Robin Lehner said Saturday becoming more mature will give him a better chance of establishing himself as a No. 1 goaltender with the Buffalo Sabres than he had with the Ottawa Senators.

Ottawa traded Lehner and forward David Legwand to Buffalo on Friday for the 21st pick in the 2015 NHL Draft.

"Maybe that's something I have to work on, my maturity level," Lehner said in an interview published by the Ottawa Sun on Saturday. "... I don't know what happened, but I wasn't happy with the way things played out. I think I came out of the gate good every season, I'd play good, and then I didn't get to play anymore. That's something I've got to work on going forward. People have different opinions. I can only speak for myself, but that's my opinion."

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Senators hope Cowen benefits from Gryba trade

Saturday, 06.27.2015 / 5:18 PM / NHL Insider

Arpon Basu - Managing Editor LNH.com

SUNRISE, Fla. -- On a day filled with significant trades at the 2015 NHL Draft, it would be easy to overlook a minor one made by the Ottawa Senators on Saturday.

But the decision to trade defenseman Eric Gryba to the Edmonton Oilers for a fourth-round pick and prospect Travis Ewanyk was important for Senators general manager Bryan Murray.

It wasn’t so much the defenseman he let go, but rather the one who stayed behind.

By trading Gryba, Murray said he was creating space in the lineup for defenseman Jared Cowen to play a bigger role next season.

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Ducks reshape roster in attempt to get over hump

Saturday, 06.27.2015 / 4:57 PM / NHL Insider

Arpon Basu - Managing Editor LNH.com

SUNRISE, Fla. -- The Anaheim Ducks were one win away from reaching the Stanley Cup Final.

General manager Bob Murray spent Saturday at the 2015 NHL Draft reshaping the Ducks roster with a series of trades meant to rectify the one negative thing about their season.

"We didn't win," Murray said. "The object is to win, isn't it?"

It is, and Murray said he feels the moves he made Saturday improved Anaheim's goaltending and speed while increasing his financial flexibility for a looming salary-cap nightmare next summer.

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Goalie trades drastically alter landscape of NHL

Saturday, 06.27.2015 / 4:35 PM / NHL Insider

Dan Rosen - NHL.com Senior Writer

SUNRISE, Fla. -- As disappointing as Ottawa Senators general manager Bryan Murray was to trade goalie Robin Lehner to another team in the Atlantic Division on Friday, he appeared to feel better about doing it after watching the goalie carousel yield smaller results Saturday.

"I did it at the right time, there's no doubt," Murray said. "I thought I had the best goaltender available, and I guess it proved out to be that."

Murray acquired the No. 21 pick in the 2015 NHL Draft from the Buffalo Sabres in a trade involving Lehner on Friday. The Edmonton Oilers, Carolina Hurricanes, Anaheim Ducks and Dallas Stars didn't have to give up an asset as significant as a first-round pick when they jumped into the goalie market Saturday, even though there were rumors heading into the draft that most goalies on the market would fetch that much.

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Devils feel Palmieri perfect fit for up-tempo style

Saturday, 06.27.2015 / 10:42 AM / NHL Insider

Dan Rosen - NHL.com Senior Writer

SUNRISE, Fla. -- The New Jersey Devils came into the 2015 NHL Draft looking to acquire a young forward with NHL experience who could fit into the up-tempo style that coach John Hynes wants to play.

Kyle Palmieri was the perfect fit. It doesn't hurt that he hails from northern New Jersey.

The Devils traded one of their two second-round draft picks this year and one of their two third-round picks in the 2016 draft to the Anaheim Ducks on Saturday for Palmieri, who is 24 years old and coming off a season in which he had 29 points, including 14 goals, in 57 games.

Palmieri has one year remaining on his contract, which carries a salary-cap charge of $1.47 million, according to war-on-ice.com. He can be a restricted free agent following the 2015-16 season.

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Sabres add Eichel, O'Reilly, Lehner to speed rebuild

Saturday, 06.27.2015 / 12:18 AM / NHL Insider

Dan Rosen - NHL.com Senior Writer

SUNRISE, Fla. -- Buffalo Sabres general manager Tim Murray isn't a fan of talking in hypotheticals, but even he knows Friday could be remembered as an unprecedented day.

"Hey, it's exciting, it's exciting," Murray said. "We've gotta get ready for [Saturday], but we did hit some targets today, and that's satisfying when you can do that."

If Friday only featured the selection of Boston University forward Jack Eichel with the No. 2 pick in the 2015 NHL Draft at BB&T Center, that might have been enough to be considered one of the most important days in Sabres history. But Murray built on it by acquiring forwards Ryan O'Reilly, Jamie McGinn and David Legwand, and goalie Robin Lehner in separate trades.

It was the exact type of day that can speed up a rebuild, which is precisely what Murray was trying to do.

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Quote of the Day

I'm very excited about what happened today. We've worked on this deal with Toronto for a month, or over a month. It got a little bit of legs on draft day, but it really heated up last night, and we were able to complete the deal today.

— Penguins GM Jim Rutherford on Phil Kessel, who he acquired from the Maple Leafs in a trade on Wednesday
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