Nick, Jess and Jess(ica) talk Jordan Staal, Milan Lucic, Nicklas Backstrom, Patrick Marleau, the 2021 IIHF Women’s World Championship and review the 2021 NHL trade deadline.
Nick and Colby recap the headlines from the last month as well as take a look at all of the New York market teams and try to figure out if any of them are actually any good as Season Six of the podcast begins.
By: Nick Lanciani
The Carolina Hurricanes and the New York Rangers completed a trade early on Sunday afternoon in which forward Eric Staal was sent to the Rangers. The Hurricanes acquired forward Aleksi Saarela, a second round pick in the 2016 NHL Entry Draft and a second round pick in the 2017 NHL Entry Draft in return.
Staal is a 31-year-old center who has spent his entire career (until now) with the Hurricanes for the last 12 seasons. In 909 career NHL games with Carolina he had 775 points (322 goals, 453 assists) and 678 penalty minutes.
He leaves the Hurricanes as the team’s all-time leader since 1997 in games played (909), goals (322), assists (453), points (775), hat tricks (13), penalty minutes (674), power play goals (105), shorthanded goals (16) and game winning goals (47). Staal ranks second to Ron Francis in franchise history in goals, assists, points and power play goals. He ranks first in franchise history, dating back to 1979, in shorthanded goals and hat tricks.
The center led the Hurricanes with 28 points (nine goals, 19 assists) during their 25 game run to the 2006 Stanley Cup championship and is the franchise’s all-time leader in playoff scoring with 43 points.
At 6’4″, 205-pounds, Staal is one of only two NHL players to register at least 30 assists and 50 points in ten consecutive seasons from 2005-2006 to 2014-2015 (the other being Martin St. Louis) and he is one of seven players to have tallied 50 or more points in at least ten different seasons since entering the league in the 2003-2004 season. Along with Jarome Iginla and Patrick Marleau, Staal is the only other NHL player to have skated in at least 900 games with at least 300 goals, 400 assists and 700 points since the start of the 2003-2004 regular season.
He currently ranks second in the NHL in shots on goal with 3,033 shots since 2003-2004. Steal played an important role in leading Carolina to the 2009 Eastern Conference Final and led the Hurricanes with 10-5-15 totals in 18 Stanley Cup Playoffs games in 2009.
The Thunder Bay, Ontario native has played in 63 games this season with 10-23-33 totals and 32 penalty minutes. He skated in his 900th career NHL game on February 7th in Montreal and became the third player to play in at least 900 games with the Whalers/Hurricanes franchise (the other two were Ron Francis and Glen Wesley, by the way).
Steal served as Carolina’s captain for parts of the last seven seasons after being named the 13th captain in franchise history on January 20, 2010. He was captain of Team Staal at the 2011 NHL All-Star Game in Raleigh and was the 2008 All-Star Game Most Valuable Player in Atlanta. He’s a four time All-Star (2007, 2008, 2009 and 2011) and was selected by the Hurricanes in the first round (2nd overall) at the 2003 NHL Entry Draft.
On an international scale, Staal has represented team Canada at the IIHF World Championship, IIHF World Junior Championship and Winter Olympics. He is a member of the “Triple Gold Club”, as a winner of the gold medal at the 2007 IIHF World Championship, Olympic gold medalist in 2010 and a Stanley Cup champion in 2006. Staal has also won a silver medal with Canada at the 2008 IIHF World Championship and registered three assists in eight games while serving as Canada’s captain at the 2013 IIHF World Championship.
The Hurricanes retained half (50%) of Staal’s remaining salary, as he is a pending UFA.
Saarela is a 19-year-old forward who currently plays in the Finnish elite league, SM-liiga, leading Assat Pori in goals (18) and ranking second in points (31) through 46 games played.
The native of Helsinki, Finland won a gold medal with his Finnish teammates at the 2016 IIHF World Junior Championship and amassed 4-3-7 totals in seven games in the tournament.
He was drafted by the New York Rangers in the third round (89th overall) of the 2015 NHL Entry Draft. In four seasons with Lukko Rauma and Assat Pori in Finland’s top league, Saarela has 47 points (25 goals, 22 assists) in 156 career games.
Eric Staal will likely join his brother, Marc, and his new teammates on Monday night against the Columbus Blue Jackets at Madison Square Garden. The Hurricanes will move on without Staal during Sunday afternoon’s matinee against the St. Louis Blues in Raleigh.
By: Nick Lanciani
On Saturday the Edmonton Oilers sent defenseman Justin Schultz to the Pittsburgh Penguins in exchange for a third round pick in the 2016 NHL Entry Draft.
Schultz is a 25-year-old pending RFA who has 101 points (28 goals, 73 assists) in 248 career NHL games through three-plus years with Edmonton.
He had his best season in 2013-2014 when he established career highs in goals (11) and points (33) in 74 appearances with the Oilers. The 6’2″, 193-pound blue liner had 3-7-10 totals in 45 games with Edmonton this season.
A native of Kelowna, British Columbia, Schultz was one of the NHL’s top rookies during the lockout shortened 2012-2013 season, earning a spot on the NHL All-Rookie Team after producing 8-19-27 totals after playing in all 48 games. Prior to January 2013, Schultz began his professional play with the Oiler’s American Hockey League affiliate, Oklahoma City Barons (AHL) where he went on to amass 18-30-48 totals in only 34 games with the Barons.
He won the Eddie Shore Award as the AHL’s best defenseman that season, despite playing in less than half of the games. Schultz was also a member of the AHL First-Team All-Star and All-Rookie Team at the end of that same season.
Schultz has represented Canada at the IIHF World Championship, recording four assists in eight games.
The University of Wisconsin product played all four years of college eligibility (2009-2012) and was a NCAA All-American as well as a Hobey Baker Finalist in each of his last two seasons. Schultz was originally selected by the Anaheim Ducks in the second round (43rd overall) of the 2008 NHL Entry Draft, but never signed with Anaheim.
Instead, the young defenseman joined the Oilers as an unrestricted free agent following his collegiate career.
Edmonton retained 50 percent of his remaining salary in the deal.
The Oilers begin their journey without Schultz as a defenseman on Sunday night at home versus the New York Islanders while the Pittsburgh Penguins will likely be joined by Schultz in their lineup on Monday night against the Arizona Coyotes from the CONSOL Energy Center.
By: Nick Lanciani
The San Jose Sharks traded backup goaltender Alex Stalock, forward Ben Smith and a conditional fourth round pick in the 2018 NHL Entry Draft to the Toronto Maple Leafs in exchange for goaltender James Reimer and forward Jeremy Morin. The conditional pick involved in the deal can become a third round pick in the 2018 draft if the Sharks reach this year’s Stanley Cup Final as reported by TSN’s Darren Dreger.
Reimer is a 27-year-old native of Morweena, Manitoba who has played in 207 NHL games, all with the Maple Leafs. He posted a 85-76-23 record with a .914 SV%, 2.83 GAA and 11 shutouts during his time with Toronto.
He is most notably remembered as the Maple Leafs goalie in their 2013 Eastern Conference Quarterfinal matchup with the Boston Bruins, posting a 3-4 record with a .923 SV% and 2.88 GAA in seven career Stanley Cup Playoffs games.
He has represented Canada twice at the World Championships (2011 and 2014) and posted a cumulative record of 7-1 with a .915 SV% and 2.13 GAA in eight games. Reiner was originally selected by Toronto in the fourth round (99th overall) in the 2006 NHL Entry Draft.
Morin is a 24-year-old forward who is currently playing with the Toronto Marlies in the American Hockey League (AHL). Through 41 games with the Marlies and the Rockford IceHogs, Morin has 11-17-28 totals, 32 penalty minutes and a plus-7 rating. He has played in 82 career NHL games with the Chicago Blackhawks and the Columbus Blue Jackets and has 10-12-22 career totals, as well as 69 penalty minutes and a plus-8 rating.
He was drafted by the Atlanta Thrashers in the second round (45th overall) of the 2009 NHL Entry Draft. Morin has previously played for San Jose’s assistant coach, Steve Spott, during his Junior hockey days with the Kitchener Rangers in the Ontario Hockey League (OHL).
Stalock is a 28-year-old goaltender who has split time with the Sharks and their AHL affiliate San Jose Barracuda this season. In 62 career NHL games, spanning five seasons with the Sharks, Stalock posted a 24-19-7 record with a 2.37 GAA and a .911 SV%. This season alone, he was 3-5-2 in 13 games with a 2.94 GAA.
The St. Paul, Minnesota native is 2-0-0 with the Barracuda this season with a 1.96 GAA. He was originally drafted by the Sharks in the fourth round (112th overall) in the 2005 NHL Entry Draft. He was also a pleasure to watch with the Worcester Sharks, as an aside.
Smith is a 27-year-old native of Winston-Salem, North Carolina who has split the season with the Sharks and the Barracuda. He was previously acquired by San Jose in a trade with the Chicago Blackhawks last season and played in 25 games with the Sharks this season, notching two goals and three assists. Smith has 8-2-10 totals in 14 games with the Barracuda this season.
He has played in 181 career NHL games split between San Jose and Chicago and has 25-19-44 career totals. Smith was a sixth round (169th overall) draft pick of the Blackhawks in the 2008 NHL Entry Draft.
As a result of the trade, the Maple Leafs have recalled goaltender, Garret Sparks, from the Marlies to serve as the backup to Jonathan Bernier tonight as Toronto squares off with the Montreal Canadiens at the Bell Centre. Meanwhile, San Jose’s additions may join the team as early as Sunday when the Sharks take on the Vancouver Canucks on the road at Rogers Arena.