Posts Tagged ‘Ray Shero’

Pittsburgh Penguins defenseman Kris Letang returning to action after stroke

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Kris Letang of the Pittsburgh Penguins

The puck-moving skills of Kris Letang (58) may be just the thing to spark the Penguins. (Andrew Dieb/Icon SMI)

By Allan Muir

Kris Letang says he’ll be nervous, but not scared, when he returns to action tonight against the Red Wings only 10 weeks after suffering a stroke.

“I’m nervous because I haven’t played in a while,” the Penguins defenseman said. “But [scared] about my situation, not at all.”

Letang has been practicing with Pittsburgh since March 17, but a return to action this season was never a sure thing. It was just over a week ago that he said he was still having good days and bad days. “I can be really dizzy,” he said. “Sometimes I have trouble walking, like, in a straight line … I have some vision things. Lights would bother me, stuff like that.”

That didn’t sound promising, but in a press conference this morning, Penguins GM Ray Shero said that Letang had been cleared by doctors, and that it was the player’s call as to when he would return. “He’s been bugging me about it for a while,” Shero said, adding that hockey didn’t cause Letang’s stroke and that the team wasn’t concerned about the risk of another incident. “He’s at no further risk to suffer a stroke playing hockey than going to grocery store.”

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  • Published On Apr 09, 2014
  • Report: Kris Letang, Pittsburgh Penguins closing in on new deal

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    Kris Letang

    Kris Letang has reportedly agreed a new contract with the Penguins. (Fred Kfoury/Icon SMI)

    By Allan Muir

    Looks like we can yank Kris Letang’s name from the trade rumor mill.

    A report from Renaud Lavoie of RDS suggests Letang and the Penguins are closing in on a deal that will keep the Norris finalist in Pittsburgh beyond the 2013-14 season when his current contract expires.

    Lavoie says there are “small details to be resolved” before the extension can be finalized.

    There were reports out of Pittsburgh last week that the two sides faced a gap that was as much about respect as cash. That led to speculation that GM Ray Shero was willing to deal Letang much the same way as he did Jordan Staal last June.

    While Letang’s game has flaws, he’s a critical part of any short-term plan to return the Pens to Stanley Cup contention. After an up-and-down season, he recorded 16 points in 15 playoff games to highlight his value to the team.

    https://twitter.com/RenLavoieRDS/status/351355499549163520


  • Published On Jun 30, 2013
  • Evgeni Malkin takes hometown discount to seal new deal with Penguins

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    Evgeni Malkin signed a new contract extension with the Pittsburgh Penguins

    Despite the rumors, trading Evgeni Malkin was never really an option for the Penguins. (Fred Kfoury/Icon SMI)

    By Allan Muir

    Shortly after the Pittsburgh Penguins announced that they’d signed Evgeni Malkin to an eight-year, $76 million extension this morning, the blog Russian Machine Never Breaks tweeted a pretty tidy perspective on the deal. The numbers illustrate the massive risk that the Pens have exposed themselves to with this contract and the 12-year, $104.4 million deal signed by Sidney Crosby last year. But when you’ve got the chance to lock down the two best players in the world, what else are you gonna do?

    Risk aside, this agreement is still a big win for GM Ray Shero, who is doing a nice job of getting his house in order ahead of the draft and the start of free agency. Trading a game-breaking talent like former MVP Malkin, or worse, letting him escape for nothing next summer, was never an option. This deal keeps the player happy, and ensures that Pittsburgh employs the best 1-2 center punch in hockey for nearly a decade to come.

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  • Published On Jun 13, 2013
  • Penguins give Dan Bylsma, assistant coaches, two-year extensions

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    Pittsburgh Penguins coach Dan Bylsma

    Many people figured Dan Bylsma was a goner after his Penguins were swept by the Bruins. (Gene J. Puskar/AP)

    By Allan Muir

    Instead of holding his coach accountable for the team’s four-game ouster in the Eastern Conference Finals, Pittsburgh Penguins general manager Ray Shero gave Dan Bylsma a strong vote of confidence.

    “I really believe we have a great head coach in Dan Bylsma…he’s the coach to move us forward,” Shero said in announcing a two-year extension for Bylsma and assistants Tony Granato and Todd Reirden.

    Bylsma had a year remaining on his current deal, so the extension keeps him under contract through the 2015-16 season.

    “I have a very good coach that I want to work with to lead this team,” Shero said. “I believe in Dan Bylsma. I believe in our coaching staff.”

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  • Published On Jun 12, 2013
  • Pittsburgh Penguins at crossroads after stunning 2013 playoff collapse

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    Evgeni Malkin (71) and the Penguins may have suffered the worst playoff loss in team history. (Brian Babineau/NHLI via Getty Images)

    Evgeni Malkin (71) and the Penguins suffered what may be the worst defeat in team history. (Getty Images)

    By Allan Muir

    Remember the 2009 Stanley Cup? It was supposed to be a coming-out party for Pittsburgh’s coterie of young superstars, the first in what surely would be a dynastic run of championships that would define the NHL’s new decade.

    Just four years later, that seven-game victory over the Detroit Red Wings is starting to look like lightning in a bottle. A series of fortuitous events that culminated in an unlikely title for a team whose hypotheticals always look better than their reality.

    Since then, the Pittsburgh Penguins have been a good team that aspires to greatness, but always finds it resides somewhere out of their grasp. A group whose vision always seems to be focused on a prize off in the distance instead of the obstacle directly in front of them.

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  • Published On Jun 08, 2013
  • What now for the Bruins as Penguins keep beating them to the trade punch?

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    Boston Bruins GM Peter Chiarelli

    Peter Chiarelli: What’s a guy gotta do to get some help around here? (Photo by Steven Senne/AP)

    By Allan Muir

    Peter Chiarelli has to be feeling a bit like Mary Ann Summers this morning.

    Summers, of course, was the beautiful, charming young castaway stranded on a desert island with one other eligible woman…who just happened to be the world’s most beautiful movie star.

    It didn’t take her long to get comfortable with the First Runner-Up sash. Looks like Chiarelli’s getting used to it, as well.

    Twice in the last week, the GM of the 2011 Stanley Cup champion Boston Bruins has put an offer on the table for a player he hoped would help his team raise another banner in 2013. And twice he could do nothing but watch as Pittsburgh GM Ray Shero — the Ginger Grant of the NHL — stole those players away with a wink and a smile.

    Didn’t matter that Chiarelli offered more substance. Shero dangles the sizzle of skating alongside Sidney Crosby and Evgeni Malkin while working for owner Mario Lemieux. Who can resist?

    Hey, the heart wants what it wants, right?

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  • Published On Mar 28, 2013
  • Top Line: Alex Ovechkin roasts critics, Sutter has words for Obama, more links

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    Alex Ovechkin

    Alex Ovechkin says he’s gone from the toilet to being king of the world. (Graig Abel/NHLI via Getty Images)

    By Allan Muir

    A notated guide to this morning’s must-read hockey stories:

    • It’s swell that Alexander Ovechkin is having fun with his critics now that he’s finally producing, but he wouldn’t have been on the receiving end of all that grief if he’d performed like this the past two seasons. Let’s hope he keeps it up. The NHL is a better league when he plays like he cares.

    • Los Angeles coach Darryl Sutter plans to bend Barack Obama’s ear about the Keystone XL pipeline when the Kings meet the President today at the White House. Hey, why waste a chance to talk to the guy, right?

    • While Ray Shero’s trade acquisitions are being lauded in Pittsburgh, the true value of a couple of aging players is being questioned elsewhere.

    • Injured Senators defenseman Erik Karlsson updated the media on his condition last night. Unfortunately, the prognosis isn’t good, buddy.

    • Damien Cox says a Jarome Iginla trade won’t be a home run for the Flames, but they might acquire some useful parts if they can find a willing partner. For the time being, Calgary management is staying quiet about any possible deal.

    • The Oilers could get a boost down the home stretch if they’re able to win the Danny DeKeyser sweepstakes.

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  • Published On Mar 26, 2013


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