NHL NEWS: VISNOVSKY LOSES CASE, BROUWER RE-SIGNS WITH CAPS, SCRIVENS RE-SIGNS WITH LEAFS
According to TSN, veteran offensive defenceman Lubomir Visnovsky has lost his arbitration case to void the trade sending him to the NY Islanders and will have to report to the team when training camp opens. He originally tried to invalidate the trade by claiming his no-trade clause was still in effect following his trade from the Edmonton Oilers to the Anaheim Ducks two years ago. I get the feeling Lubo likes it a lot in California, as he was never happy in Edmonton after being traded there from LA, and now he’s being sent to “Edmonton East” in the Islanders, in terms of them being just as bad a team as the Oilers. He had a good couple of seasons in Anaheim, 2010-11 in particular standing out as a fantastic year with 68 points from the blueline and garnering Norris Trophy consideration, but now he’ll have to take his talents to Long Island to help out the long-struggling team there. Hopefully he decides to report. Evgeni Nabokov initially resisted playing there 2 years ago after being claimed off waivers but relented and surprisingly re-signed with the team, showing it can’t be that bad a place to play!
The Washington Capitals have re-signed forward Troy Brouwer to a 3 year extension worth $3.67m per season. Brouwer is a versatile forward, capable of playing up and down the line-up, and has averaged 19 goals over the last 3 seasons. He’s big and very physical, and plays in all situations, so is a valuable part of the squad. Despite having a bad +/- of -15, it’s explainable by the fact he played the tough competition, some of the toughest on the team, but he wasn’t far off breaking even by the shot differentials, showing he was helping to stem the bleeding and slow down the best the opposition had to offer. A good deal, if maybe slightly on the expensive side but not by much. I would have said $3.5m maximum for this type of play would be reasonable, but this isn’t far over so I can’t complain too much!
The Toronto Maple Leafs have signed restricted free agent goalie Ben Scrivens to a two year deal. The structure is interesting, as the first year is 2-way (meaning if he plays in the AHL he gets paid an AHL salary) and for $600,000 at the NHL level, and the second year is 1-way (meaning he gets paid the same NHL salary whether he’s in the NHL or the AHL) for $625,000. Scrivens had below average stats in 12 games (3.13 GAA and .903 SV%) but that is a small sample size and it was his first taste of NHL action, so in actual fact it wasn’t too bad. He was great in 39 AHL games for the Toronto Marlies, winning 22 games and posting a 2.04 GAA and .926 SV%. He was even better in the playoffs as he led the Marlies to the Calder Cup Finals, posting 11 wins in 17 games with a 1.92 GAA and .935 SV%, unfortunately though the Marlies lost to the incredible Norfolk Admirals. Scrivens is a very good goalie prospect, and should be in the NHL this year backing up James Reimer, so should get a bigger shot at playing time.