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You see many “perfect timing” photos that make things look at first glance seem like something else than what they really are. The following is one that captures what Kevin Durant may look like as he ages (well at least from the back and his hair color) ;)

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Mainly remembered for his career with the New York Rangers, more hockey fans should know more about hockey great Vic Hadfield. Hadfield spent 13 seasons with the Rangers and led them to the Stanley Cup Finals in 1972. That year Hadfield scored 50 goals (and added 56 points for a total of 106 points), and is only one of three players to score 50 or more goals in a season for the New York Rangers (Adam Graves, Jaromir Jagr).

Being one of only three players to do that while playing for the Rangers is quite an accomplishment, considering other hockey greats like Mark Messier and Wayne Gretzky. While Gretzky was near the end of his career, in the two of the three seasons he was with the Rangers, he totaled 90 or more points. Mark Messier however was still in his prime when he played for New York during his first stint with the team, and led them to a Stanley Cup Title in 1994 (The team’s first in 54 years). In first six seasons with the Rangers, Messier recorded 518 points, but unlike Hadfield, he did not reach the 50 goal mark during his stint with New York. The closest Messier came was in the 1995-96 season with 47 goals.

One other reason that got me interested in doing a piece on Hadfield was the fact he had played for the Pittsburgh Penguins (my favorite team)! Hadfield scored 73 and 65 points respectively in his first two seasons with the Pens. An interesting note about Hadfield is that early on in his career he struggled offensively, but in the 1967-68 season he reached the 20 goal mark for the first time and would never fail to reach the mark again. But Hadfield had some history of being plagued by injuries, and in his third season with the Penguins during the 1975-76 season he suffered a serious knee injury that forced him into retirement.

I think hockey fans in general need to acknowledge Hadfield a bit more, (and I hope my fellow Penguin fans feel the same way). finishing with 712 career points (323 Goals, 389 Assists) it would be a shame not to recognize and honor Hadfield’s accomplishments.

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The charismatic and often admired WWE Superstar Daniel Bryan may lack in size, but his heart is and love for the business is what makes him a larger than life persona. Monday night, Bryan noticed the door that leads to his house had been opened. Suddenly two men came out and made a run for it. One of them was able to get away, the other, well he may have became subject to the “Yes Lock” as Bryan ran him down and kept him from escaping until the police came. 22 year old Cesar Sosa was booked and charged with burglary by Maricopa County Jail in Phoenix Arizona. Bryan is expected to make a comment later on this even.

http://www.abc15.com/news/region-phoenix-metro/central-phoenix/wwe-star-daniel-bryan-stops-burglar-in-phoenix

http://network.yardbarker.com/wwe/article_external/wwes_daniel_bryan_stopped_a_burglar_because_he_is_still_the_best_in_the_world/16912658

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The other day I was actually on the phone with a head coach from the NHL. One of the questions he asked me was who I thought were the top five goaltenders in the NHL today. Right away I was able to name three that quickly came to mind, Jonathan Quick of the Los Angeles Kings, Henrik Lundqvist of the New York Rangers, and Tuukka Rask of the Boston Bruins. I struggled to name who I thought the remaining two were to fill up the top five.

I threw out names like Roberto Luongo, Marc Andre Fleury, even Montreal Canadiens backup Justin Tokarski, because I was so impressed with his performance during the Eastern Conference Final against the New York Rangers. I even mentioned to this NHL coach that I think Tokarski is someone to look out for in the future and maybe a star goaltender one day. I was able to eliminate goaltenders who I feel were not worthy of being in the top five. In my opinion, I do not feel Chicago’s Corey Crawford is the reason for the Blackhawks success in general, rather it is their firepower from top to bottom that has made the team so great.  Vancouver’s Ryan Miller although good, I am not sold on him being great.

So who are the other two goalies that would round out my top five? Now that I have had a few days to ponder it, I was able to think carefully and finally named the other two goalies, Nashville Predators Pekka Rinne and Columbus Blue Jackets Sergei Bobrovsky.

While Rinne is coming off an infection in his hip, you cannot deny what he has done in Nashville as remarkable. Rinne won a total of 108 games from 2010-12, leading the Predators to three straight playoff appearances and was named as a Vezina Trophy Finalist in both 2011 and 2012. In the 2012-13 strike shortened season, Rinne tied for the most shutouts recorded (5) with four other goaltenders. (Tukka Rask, Mike Smith, Cory Schneider, and Jimmy Howard)

For Bobrovsky, he immediately impressed me in his NHL debut with the Philadelphia Flyers back on October 7, 2010 in a 3-2 win over their rival Pittsburgh Penguins. Bobrovsky had an outstanding rookie season, posting a 28-13-8 mark and a .915 save percentage. Unfortunately Bobrovsky hit a speed bump in the playoffs and was benched in favor of Brian Boucher. The Flyers would go on to sign Ilya Bryzgalov to a 9 year contract (a decision that would quickly backfire on Philadelphia) and trade Bobrovsky to the Blue Jackets the follow year. Unlike Bryzgavlov, Bobrovsky continued to improve and would win the the Vezina in 2013 with a 21-11-6 mark with a .932 save percentage. The following season he would help the Blue Jackets to the playoffs and guide the franchise to its first playoff victory, a 4-3 win over the Pittsburgh Penguins. Columbus would win another game before the Penguins ultimately won the series in 6 games. Even so, Bobrovsky continues to excel and will make Columbus a legitimate playoff contender each season if he maintains his trend of success.

With that, my current list of the top five goalies in the NHL is set. Jonathan Quick, Henrik Lundqvist, Tukka Rask, Pekka Rinne, and Sergei Bobrovsky are at the top of the food chain. But I want to make it clear like I did with the NHL coach I spoke to, and that being that this is the greatest goaltender of all time! http://noodleofnam.blogspot.com/2013/03/file-profile-martin-brodeur-greatest.html

Sources: www.hockey-reference.com

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The Florida Panthers have not had much success in the franchise’s history. Despite success early on in the organization with a trip to the Stanley Cup Finals in 1996, the Panthers have never been able to build off the success which included 12 straight seasons without making the playoffs (2000-2011). According to The Score http://www.thescore.com/nhl/news/539519 the team has hired a consultant to find out if there is a way they can leave Broward County (where the team’s arena is located) who has a contract to keep the team in the area.

If the Panthers were to relocate,  Seattle could be a an option as an investment group that includes NHL great Wayne Gretzky, have inquired about starting a franchise in the city. ( http://sports-kings.com/aroundtherink/report-wayne-gretzky-trying-to-bring-an-nhl-team-to-seattle/ )

 

 

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Dustin Penner needs a new home, and the Pittsburgh Penguins need size on their roster amongst many other things (secondary scoring, winger for Crosby, depth,etc).  Penner spent the majority of last season with the Anaheim Ducks where he excelled with line mates Ryan Getzlaf and Corey Perry with 32 points in 49 games (13 goals, 19 assists), before being traded to the Washington Capitals. Penner was nowhere near as productive in Washington, recording a mere 3 points (1 goal, 2 assists) in 18 games with the Capitals. But to be fair Penner did not have much to work with in D.C.

Along with Penner’s size and scoring abilities, he would also help with the powerplay unit (2 minutes and 16 seconds per game with the Ducks last season http://www.washingtonpost.com/news/fancy-stats/wp/2014/07/11/bargains-are-still-available-in-nhl-free-agency/ ) He can provide great net presence with his 6ft 4in. stature and muscle out defenders with his near 250lb. frame. On top of that, Penner has proven he is able to step it up another notch in the playoffs. (It is not secret the Penguins have been criticized for their postseason performance the past few year)

Penner is a two time Stanley Cup Champion (2007 Anaheim Ducks, 2012 Los Angeles Kings). During the Kings Stanley Cup run in 2012, Penner provided them team with 3 goals and 8 assists in 20 games during the playoffs, including the game winning goal in Game 5 of the Western Conference Finals against the Phoenix Coyotes to send Los Angeles to the Stanley Cup Final. In 78 career playoff games, Penner has registered a total of 35 points (13 goals, 22 assists), a point total he has also reached six times during the regular season throughout his career. I wrote a piece yesterday regarding David Booth (which you can read here  http://kcsportsninja.com/david-booth-a-good-fit-for-the-pittsburgh-penguins/ ) explaining how he can provide and address the Penguins needs.

The one factor though with Booth is that he does have a history of injury, where as Penner (with the exception of his rookie season and the 2012 lockout) has never played less than 65 games per season throughout his career. Another plus is that Penner would also come relatively cheap. His most recent cap hit was $2 million, and if Pittsburgh were to even offer that much for a 1 year contract, they would still be well over $5 million in cap space. While there are no reports of any interest in Penner thus far from Pittsburgh, I think he is an option that the Penguins should definitely consider looking at!

 

 

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The Pittsburgh Penguins have been trying to address some of the team’s issues this off-season, one of them being depth at the forward position. Pittsburgh traded away sniper James Neal to the Nashville Predators in exchange for Patric Hornqvist and Nick Spaling. Though the trade has been seen as questionable by some in Pitssburgh, Hornqvist provides scoring in his own right with four 20+ goal seasons, including 30 in the 2009-10 season. Spaling was brought in for depth purposes to help with secondary scoring. And even after the signing of Steve Downie, the Penguins still need to fill out their bottom six. Pittsburgh is unlikely to re-sign Lee Stempniak, and Taylor Pyatt is as good as gone. Plus, questions remain if Pascal Dupuis will be the same after his injury, and Beau Bennett, who has great potential, has been injury ridden. So who could the Penguins look at? One possible solution would be signing David Booth.

Booth, who was bought out by the Vancouver Canucks after clearing waivers in June, is an unrestricted free agent that has provided great secondary scoring in his career. During his time with the Florida Panthers, Booth had two season where he registered 40 points, and posted a career best of 60 during the 2008-09 season. Booth’s production has taken a slight decline, but it was partially due to a reduced role with the  Canucks, as he was averaging four minutes less playing time with Vancouver than when he was with Florida.

Booth would most certainly get the chance at more playing time with the Pittsburgh Penguins as they are in need of depth and secondary scoring, both of which he can provide. Additionally, Booth is a fast skater with good size. Certainly Booth would be lined up with Brandon Sutter on the 3rd line, where he once again can reach his potential 40 point scoring total, and excel once more while giving the Penguins what they need.

 

 

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It was a beating of epic proportions; a smack down, a throttling, a whipping, a trouncing. No matter what you call it, Germany’s 7-1 win over Brazil in the 2014 World Cup semifinals was stunning—stunningly good for the Germans and, almost more noteworthy, stunningly bad for the Brazilians. Brazil was at home, where no one expected them to lose; but they were also at home, with more pressure than has probably ever been on one team.

You see, Brazil is a soccer (or fotebol) nation and they expect to always win—especially at home. But tragedy struck the team in the quarterfinals when superstar forward Neymar was hit from behind and fractured a vertebra, rendering him unable to play the rest of the tournament. The team was in shock that their star was out; in fact, it is reported that the team was so “stressed” about losing him that they had a sports psychologist come speak with them.

Apparently it didn’t work.

The Brazil that showed up, also down central defender Thiago Silva who was out on the accumulation of yellow cards (which is a whole other issue we can discuss another time), looked more like a mediocre college team than a world-class national team with five World Cup trophies. They were sloppy, slow and uninspired. Instead of rallying around the loss of their superstar, they imploded.

All things said, this 2014 Brazil team was far from their best. They didn’t play o jogo bonito, or fotebol arte, that we’ve become accustomed to seeing from them. There was little beauty in their recent games; there were no Brazilian playmakers gracefully dancing and weaving around the competition and they had the most fouls of any team in the tournament through the quarterfinals. The result (winning), not the style, was all that mattered. For a nation and a national team that prides itself on beautiful, flowing and exciting soccer, this was not the team of their dreams.

The news has all been about how bad Brazil was; but one of the reasons they were so bad was their opponent played nearly flawless soccer. The Germans played a masterful game and even a healthy Neymar couldn’t have stopped their relentless perfection. They created opportunities and took advantage of every opportunity given by Brazil (and there were many). The Germans score five goals in the first half — in just 18 minutes. They were fluid, aggressive and physical. The result was perhaps the most complete, and certainly the most dominant, game in World Cup history.

I, along with most of the world, always forgets how good Germany is; how good they’ve always been. This was the fourth World Cup semifinal they’ve made in a row and the second final in the last four, with this game their redemption to losing to Brazil in the 2002 finals—the only other time these two teams have met. In 18 World Cups, they have finished in the top four 13 times (including this year’s yet-to-be-determined final result); they won it all in 1954, 1974 and 1990, they’ve been runners-up four times (1966, 1982, 1986, 2002), come in third four times (1934, 1970, 2006, 2010) and fourth once (1958). Impressive to say the least. Their striker, 24-year-old Thomas Mueller is playing in his second World Cup with 10 goals in 12 games, making him just the second player to score five goals in consecutive World Cup tournaments. The other? Mueller’s teammate Miroslav Klose, who did it in 2002 and 2006.

Germany is a national team that historically, and currently, is a force to be reckoned with. If you  want to read about how and why the German national team is so good, I highly suggest you read this article: How Germany’s 14-Year Plan Destroyed Brazil, it’s fascinating.

In the aftermath of the bloodbath in Belo Horizonte, we expected objects thrown onto the field and riots to break out across Brazil as fans openly and unapologetically wept in the stands. But then something beautiful happened: at the conclusion of the game, the Brazilian fans stood and applauded the German side that had just embarrassed their team (and some would say their nation). The show of sportsmanship was unexpected and inspiring; it reminded us that this game, this beautiful game, is more important than any result. And though national pride is at stake, the love of the game itself is the final outcome.

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And then there were four; four teams and four World Cup semifinalists worthy of our admiration. We said “Au revoir” to Olivier Giroud of France and Nacer Chadli of Belgium, and “Adios” to Yeltsin Tejada of Costa Rica and James (Hi-mez) of Colombia. But those four who remain… well, let’s just say I don’t expect these semi final games to disappoint.

Game 1

Germany
Brazil
Germany vs. Brazil
Tuesday July 8 
4 p.m.

Representing Germany, we have Mats Hummels!

Mats Hummels, Germany

After somehow missing Mats in the first round, he has made a strong comeback. The 6’4″ central defender scored a beautiful header in the quarterfinals against France. Much like in WWII, the Germans out-muscled the French, in no small part to Hummels (too soon?).

Representing Brazil, we have Oscar (Oscar dos Santos Emboaba Júnior), the Chelsea attacking midfielder.

Oscar, Brazil

With the unfortunatel and devastating injury to Brazil’s superstar Neymar, the hopes of the host nation lies squarely on the young shoulders of 22-year-old Oscar. With only one goal in the tournament and the expectation of 200 million Brazilians, I expect Oscar to step up to the role, but his for team to still have a difficult time against the much bigger and stronger German side.

Result: Losing Naymar is a killer for Brazil, and the squad hasn’t even looked at good to begin with. The Germans are in their fourth-straight World Cup semi final and I expect them to push Brazil around physically in a way they aren’t used to and won’t react well to. Look for Die Mannschaft to head to their sixth World Cup final.

Game 2

The Netherlands
Argentina
    The Netherlands vs. Argentina
Wednesday, July 9
 4 p.m. 

For The Netherlands, we have their captain, Robin van Persie. This Dutch team isn’t the Oranje of yore – it is the trickery of coach Louis van Gaal that has gotten them further in this tournament than anyone expected.

Robin van Persie, The Netherlands

The Dutch were clearly the stronger team in their quarterfinal match against Costa Rica, but their inability to score, primarily van Persie’s multiple misses, are troubling. But if the Flying Dutchman – a moniker he earned after his diving header against Spain in the opening game of the World Cup – can get back to his form of the first two games of the tournament, Lionel Messi and his squad will have their hands full trying to reach the final.

Ezequiel Lavezzi, Argentina

Representing the other South American semi finalist nation, we have Ezequiel Lavezzi of Argentina. As Sergio Aguero’s replacement in the last two games, Lavezzi, has done a fair job of supporting fellow attackers Gonzalo Higuain and superstar Lionel Messi. However, with Aguero being declared fit to play in the semifinal match, it is unclear if Lavezzi will have a starting role. He has played well enough, but is not the proven goalscorer that Aguero is – something the Argentinian squad will desperately need against Robin van Persie, Arjen Robben and the rest of the hungry Dutch squad.

Result: Without Messi, this Argentinian squad wouldn’t have even made the quarterfinals. But the Dutch weren’t supposed to be here, either. But with Angel DiMaria’s thigh tear, Argentina’s second best player and Messi’s right-hand man is out, which spells disaster for the South Americans. If the Oranje can score like they did in the first round (which requires van Persie to return to form after a slight hamstring injury in practive before the quarters), then I don’t see the injury-riddled La Albiceleste (The White and Sky Blue) matching them on the scoreboard, and the Dutch heading to their second-straight World Cup final.

If all goes according to my predictions, we’ll have a German-Dutch World Cup final at Estádio Maracanã, in Rio de Janeiro.

The Netherlands
Germany

Will this be our World Cup Final?
Check it out:
Sunday, July 13,
3 p.m on ABC


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In April 16, 2007, an unknown man was picked to wrestle in a match against then WWE Intercontinental Champion Umaga. The man would go on to score the upset and pick up the victory and IC belt in the process. That man became known as Santino Marella. Seven years later after several neck injuries, Vaughn Johnson (a writer for the Squared Circle Blog on philly.com) has reported that Marella has decided to hang up his wrestling boots and call it a career.

Santino Marella (Anthony Carelli) used the Marella name to honor the late Gorilla Monsoon (Robert Marella). After winning the IC title, Marella’s career started out in unique fashion by insulting WWE legend and Hall of Famer Stone Cold Steve Austin. Marella would routinely mock Austin on a weekly basis as Stone Cold was filming for his role in the movie “The Condemned”. Finally it came to a head in November 2007 when Stone Cold hit Marella with a “Stone Cold Stunner” and finished him off with a beer bath.

Santino was involved in a storyline with Beth Phoenix, where they were dubbed “Glamarella” (Phoenix’s nickname was Glamazon). Santino would reclaim the IC belt for the second time when he and Phoenix were involved in a mix tag teamed match with Mickie James, (who was the Women’s Champion) and Kofi Kingston, (who was the reigning IC champion) with the stipulation being the winners would become champions.

Perhaps arguably one of his most well known storylines was when he entered the “Miss Wrestlemania” 25 woman battle royale at Wrestlemania 25. Marella dressed in dragged and going by the name Santina, claimed to be the the twin sister of Santino. Santina would go on to win the battle royale and was crowned “Miss Wrestlemania”.

Marella would form a tag team with Vladmir Kozlov later on and in the process win the WWE Tag Team titles. The team split up after Kozlov was released. Santino went on to capture the WWE’s United States Championship in March of 2012 when he defeated the “All American American” Jack Swagger.

Between then and up to his eventual retirement, Marella was involved in tag teams with several different members of the roster, and used humorous antics to get over with the crowd. Marella adopted a snake like sock to perform one of his patented moves “The Cobra”. Unfortunately after a while, all the bumps you receive eventually begin to take its toll on the body and after sustaining a 3rd neck injury Marella has decided to retire.

He may have not been one of the WWE’s top draws, but Marella was able to win the crowd over and geared real well towards the younger audience. From myself and every other wrestling fan, we wish you all the best Santino and “Best of luck in your future endeavors”.

http://www.philly.com/philly/blogs/the-squared-circle/WWE-superstar-Santino-Marella-announces-retirement-during-live-event.html

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No, the title of this article is not some joke, Claude Giroux really was arrested for grabbing the butt cheek of a male police officer.

“Although few details were immediately available, a source said Giroux was arrested for repeatedly grabbing the buttocks of a male police officer. Alcohol is believed to have been involved.”

To read more about this story, read the article from the Ottawa Sun http://www.ottawasun.com/2014/07/02/philadelphia-flyers-star-claude-giroux-arrested-in-ottawa

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The Pittsburgh Penguins are looking to improve their needs at forward. As I mentioned yesterday (http://kcsportsninja.com/latest-pittsburgh-penguins-rumors/ ) Pittsburgh is interested in Toronto Maple Leafs Nikolai Kulemin, and would pair him up with his fellow Team Russia linemate Evgeni Malkin. If however the Penguins can not acquire Kulemin, Pittsburgh would then look at Ales Hemsky as a backup plan. Hemsky’s name was brought up at the trade deadline, and the same pro scouts that had interest in him then are still with the Penguins organization. (http://insidepittsburghsports.com/story/latest-rumblings-around-the-league-on-miller-iginla-niskanen-hemsky-orpik-more/66255/ )

Dale MacMillan/Getty Images

Another name that had been brought up was Evander Kane of the Winnipeg Jets. It seems though he may not be a player the Penguins are looking at anymore, as him name really has not been brought up since the trade deadline when Ray Shero was still General Manager.

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The Pittsburgh Penguins have made a lot of changes in the past three weeks.  First they hired Jim Rutherford who was for twenty years  the Carolina Hurricanes General Manager.     Then kept Jason Botterrill, Tom Fitzgerald and Billy Guerin as an associate general managers and possible successors to Rutherford who said in his press conference he would be the GM for three years.   Then last week they named Tom Johnston as their new head coach.   Johnston was an NHL assistant coach under Marc Crawford with the Vancouver Canucks and Los Angeles Kings, and was the head coach plus general manager of the Portland Winterhawks in the Western Hockey League.   Then Rick Tocchet was named assistant coach, and Friday night during the NHL draft they traded James Neal to Nashville for Nick Spaling and Patric Hornqvist.   The hiring of Rutherford signals that underachieving in the playoffs will end.  He wants the team to have more toughness, grit, and have four balanced lines.    Johnston has the chance to be a gem of coach or a flop who can’t work with stars Sidney Crosby and Evgeni Malkin.   Tocchet is Johnston’s right hand and a close friend of owner Mario Lemieux and was an interesting hire.  I feel that Tocchet will get the guys in the room to play hard and be accountable.   There have been reports that they could get Travis Green as an assistant coach to help with the message.    The true test is what will happen in the playoffs and October 9th can’t come any sooner for me.

2945

 

I love researching and looking into rumors that may be going around regrading any of my favorite sports teams. But that is the one key thing you have to remember and keep in mind about them, they are “rumors”. And depending on the source, it may or may not even be a reliable one, which will force you to do a bit more research into the alleged rumor.

The Pittsburgh Penguins were rumored to have been shopping around James Neal, and on draft day he was dealt to the Nashville Predators in exchange for Patric Hornqvist and Nick Spaling. There are still rumors floating around as to what the Penguins will do to shake up their roster for the upcoming season. Here are the following as of late, and keep in mind, they are just “rumors” and may be nothing more and nothing less.

1. Martin Brodeur

Paul Bereswill/Getty Images

 

It is no secret the Penguins have had issues at goaltending. Marc Andre Fleury has had playoff meltdowns as of late, but redeemed himself a bit these past playoffs, including registering back to back shutouts against the eventual Eastern Conference Champions New York Rangers. Still, that has not stopped Pittsburgh from looking around and perhaps seeking a change in net. There has been talk about getting rid of Fleury in order to create some cap room and sign players that will address some of the Penguins other areas that need to be filled. One goalie talked about is Martin Brodeur. Brodeur has spent his entire career with the New Jersey Devils and led them to three Stanley Cup Championships. Louis Jean of TVA Sports reports that Pittsburgh is one of six teams interested in Brodeur (http://www.cbssports.com/nhl/eye-on-hockey/24600522/nhl-rumors-leafs-penguins-among-teams-interested-in-martin-brodeur ).

 

 

2. Nikolai Kulemin

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Nikolai Kulemin has been a topic of interest for a while now. While he is a former 30 goal scorer, Kulemin has failed to reach 3o POINTS total in the three seasons since then. The one thing though that has kept him on the Penguins radar is the on ice relationship and chemistry he has with Penguins center Evgeni Malkin when they are playing together for team Russia. According to Josh Yohe of the Pittsburgh Tribune-Review, General Manager Jim Rutherford is looking at acquiring Kulemin and line him up with Malkin (http://triblive.com/sports/penguins/6332544-74/penguins-million-defensemen#axzz35uOBsZEU) If the Penguins do indeed pursue and land Kulemin it will be a risk, but it should not cost them too much should they choose to do so.

 

Penguins Looking To Trade Paul Martin?

 

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As mentioned, the Penguins are looking to free up some cap space. Pittsburgh is to have also said to finally bring up and give younger defenseman in the system full time spots on the main roster. Trading Paul Martin would possibly be a solution for both of these situations. The Detroit Red Wings and Minnesota Wild reportedly have expressed interest in the veteran defenseman. (http://insidepittsburghsports.com/story/red-wings-interested-in-paul-martin-more-rumblings/66175/ )

 

The Penguins are set to part ways with Matt Niskanen and Jussi Jokinen. Tanner Glass has also informed he will not be back with Pittsburgh next year, and Brooks Orpik tenure with the team seems to be coming to an end and will go on the market.

Other names that the Penguins had been mentioned to be interested in the recent months include, Evander Kane, Blake Wheeler, and free agent Dan Boyle. Free Agency begins July 1 and it will be interesting to say the least in what the Penguins do as far as trades and signings go in the off-season. One thing for certain is there will be a whole new landscape for this team at the start of next season!

 

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While known as “America’s Team” the Dallas Cowboys are anything but short of receiving criticism from its fans! Several members of the Cowboys team, which includes Tony Romo, Jason Witten, and Brandon Carr (among other teammates), read tweets from fans on twitter harshly criticizing the team and their performance. Surprisingly it appeared that Romo did not get the harshest critics, rather it was Brandon Carr (though that’s subjective) who at the end after reading a tweet that read “Losing brandon(sic) Carr seems like a good thing now a days” got up and said “that’s it I’m out of here”

 

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The Pittsburgh Penguins have been needing to address their issue for wingers and perhaps got a steal with their selection of Kasperi Kapanen. Jesse Marshall (Owner/Operator of faceoff-factor.com) mentioned Kapnen’s quick release and great accuracy as his biggest strengths. Kasperi is the son of former NHLer Sami Kapanen (who spent time playing for the Carolina when current Penguins General Manager Jim Rutherford was the GM of the Hurricanes).

 

    Here are some highlights of Kapenen playing in the Finnish Premier League

 

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After an incredible performance in the 2014 NHL Stanley Cup Playoffs, Marian Gaborik has signed a 7 year contract extension with the Los Angeles Kings, per Pierre LeBrun. Gaborik had 22 points and lead all scorers with 14 goals during the playoffs which help guided the Kings to their 2nd Stanley Cup championship in three years.

 

The 7 year deal is worth $4.9 million each season.

Los Angeles Kings center Jarret Stoll was quick to show his excitement as well on Gaborik’s new deal and future with the team!

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It looks like the wait is over, and the Pittsburgh Penguins have found a new guy to lead the helm behind the bench, Mike Johnston. Johnston, who has been the head coach and general manager of the WHL’s Portland Winterhawks since 2008-09, has had some NHL experience as an assistant coach for the Los Angeles Kings and Vancouver Canucks.

The Penguins are also expected to add Rick Tocchet to the coaching staff as an assistant.

 

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