Category: NHL

Pasta2

Hey Pasta? How’s that black eye?

Boston BruinsDavid Pastrnak(88) took a high stick up to the face recently and is sporting the shiner.

We think he’ll add to his new career high 34 goals, 36 assists and 70 points in the playoffs despite the injury.

The soon-to-be 21-year old has his entry level deal come up this year and becomes a restricted free agent who’s likely to assume a nice pay bump.

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Boston Bruins‘ undrafted rookie center Noel Acciari(55) has been just the kind of spark plug the team was looking for to complete their roster.

Playing mostly limited minutes on an average of 15 shifts per contest, he’s effectively making his presence felt using his small-ish 5’10” but wide 208 lbs. frame to break up plays and agitate the opposing offense despite only notching an assist in 7 NHL games.

He has 6 penalty minutes and a +1 rating.

The team has also magically posted a 5-0-2 record in his time up with the big club.

He has proven he knows how to win as the Providence College squad he skated with for four years won the 2014 NCAA Championship and he was regionally voted as the best defensive forward.

The 24-year old has seemingly played a similar role on reassignment to affiliate Providence Bruins but has also decently affected the score sheet in his first season with 7 goals, 12 assists and a +8 rating in 42 AHL games.

Signed to a 2-year entry level deal he likely just looking forward to become a fixture on the roster.

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Tampa Bay Lightning 7th round pick in the 2013 draft (#186 overall) 6th year Swiss-born right wing Joel Vermin(92) picks up his first NHL recall and looks to be staying for a spell.

After a quick start with farm team Syracuse Crunch (3 goals, 7 assists in 12 AHL games with a +2 plus/minus), he already looking to eclipse marks set in his rookie year in North America, where he connected for 12 tallies and 21 helpers.

In 2 games with the parent club he skated 15 shifts for 11:18 of total ice time with 1 assist (on the game-winning goal in his 2nd appearance), 1 shot on net, 2 hits, 1 giveaway, 2 minutes of power play time and a +1 rating. Both games were also victories.

The not exactly huge 5’11” 192 lbs. forward skated 5 seasons in his country’s top league for hometown team Bern racking up some decent numbers (31 goals, 50 assists in 177 games with a +32) and won the 2013 NLA Championship.

At 23-years old he signed a three-year entry level deal that makes him a restricted free agent at the end of the current campaign and looks to be in line for a nice extension to continue.

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11th year Khazakhstan-born goaltender Anton Khudobin(34) circles back returning to Boston Bruins on a new 2-year deal.

He was last with the team on a trade at the 2011/2012 deadline and was sent to affiliate Providence Bruins for the remainder of the calendar.

After signing a 2-year contract to remain, he assume starting net minder duties in the AHL, while only appearing in one big league game.

The agile 5’11” 185 lbs. back stop began the lockout shortened final season of his deal back in the KHL, where he started his pro career in 2006/2007 with 16 games for Metallurg Magnitogorsk.

He also played his junior hockey with the squad.

Signing until the big league restarted with Atlant Mytishchi, he would assume his first full-time back-up duties getting 14 NHL games in the shortened campaign.

His next stop would take him to Carolina Hurricanes on a one-year deal and he played in a career high 36 games, then receive a two-year extension to stay put but was traded to Anaheim Ducks for the second season of the contract, where he was caught in a glut of starting net minders and spent all but 9 games with affiliate San Diego Gulls.

The 30-year old should split duties nicely on his second tour with the black & gold and give the team confidence in their “new” backstop.

Ben Smith (21)

Ben-Smith

7th year right wing Ben Smith(21) didn’t have to wait too long before Colorado Avalanche picked up the unrestricted free agent’s option for 2016/2017, signing him to a one-year, two-way deal.

For the first time since being drafted by Chicago Blackhawks as a 6th round pick in 2008 (#169 overall), he’s set to join his third team since halfway through the 2014/2015 season.

Traded at the deadline to San Jose Sharks from the team he’d spent the previous 5+ years with and won the 2013 Stanley Cup, he skated 19 NHL games scoring 2 goals and 3 assists with a +3 rating but after 6 contests in the follow-up campaign with no points found himself reassigned to affiliate San Jose Barracuda.

After 14 games in the minors exploding the score sheet (8 goals, assists), he was once again dealt at the deadline to Toronto Maple Leafs.

They would keep him on the roster through 16 games registering 2 goals and 4 assists with another +3 rating but sent to farm club Toronto Marlies in their quest for a first Calder Cup trophy.

Despite their best efforts, they were eliminated in the Eastern Conference Finals.

The 28-year old, two-time NCAA Championship winner with Boston College Eagles will likely see more playing time in the big league with the young squad but also could be named captain of affiliate San Antonio Rampage to help guide the prospects.

Brian-Ferlin

Boston Bruins‘ 4th round pick in the 2011 draft (#121 overall) right wing Brian Ferlin(19) was enjoying a good first season before getting sidelined for the Calder Cup Playoffs with a hit that unknowingly knocked him for a loop in the final game of the regular campaign.

As a rookie he potted 11 goals and 9 assists in 53 contests, while also grabbing a first recall for 7 appearances and his first NHL point, an assist.

The 6’2″ 209 lbs. forward sat for the majority of his sophomore run, finally returning four months later.

In 23 AHL games with affiliate Providence Bruins he scored 6 goals and 8 assists and reversed his -9 rating from a year earlier to a +9, while continuing to impress the parent club.

He enjoyed a first offensive breakout in his 2nd year of play for Indiana Ice with 25 goals and 48 assists in 53 USHL games before leaving for Cornell University.

Through 3 years of college hockey he also showed good productivity and was ready to leave school for his chance to turn pro in 2014/2015.

The 24-year old was slated to compete for a spot on the big league roster last season but post-concussion syndrome derailed that opportunity for the moment.

A late training camp cut for his two seasons in the system, he should make waves in the upcoming run.

Not bad for a Jacksonville, FL native.

Wade Megan (28)

Wade-Megan

Florida Panthers‘ 5th round pick in the 2009 draft (#138 overall) center Wade Megan(28) has played in the club’s system for the last three seasons on minor league contracts, first through two years with San Antonio Rampage, then last season with new affiliate Portland Pirates.

The seemingly graciously listed at 6’1″ 190 lbs. forward recorded new career highs in all categories through 2015/2016 getting 14 goals, 9 assists for 23 points with a +10 rating, 145 shots on net and even a new best 53 penalty minutes.

These totals were more in line with what he achieved in his last two years at Boston University, where he posted identical 29 point campaigns, serving as captain in his senior season.

Heading into his fourth season on an upward scoring trajectory, the soon-to-be 26-year old scores his first NHL contract signing a one-year two-way deal with St. Louis Blues that will likely see him spent most of his time with farm club Chicago Wolves.

 

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Arizona Coyotes‘ 5th year left wing Jordan Martinook(48) must have enjoyed his first full NHL campaign after increasing his scoring output each season with affiliate Portland Pirates.

He played almost a full 82 game slate missing perfect attendance by only a single outing, connecting for a very decent 9 goals and 15 assists for 24 points.

The 23-year old will definitely be looking to add to those totals in the upcoming year with his two-year extension up at the end of next season.

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Vancouver Canucks‘ 1st round pick in the 2012 draft (#26 overall) 2nd year center Brendan Gaunce(5o) has taken his game to the next level in his sophomore season with affiliate Utica Comets.

He’s already surpassed his goal mark with 15, tied his assist high at 18, has a new best 33 points and a +9 rating in just over half the AHL games since his rookie campaign.

The 6’2″ 207 lbs. power forward that also fires his fair share of pucks on the net received his big league debut early in the 2015/2016 for a couple of contests and was interestingly returned after his 1st NHL goal.

He stayed with the farm team for the next four months before recently receiving a second summons up to the show and looks like he’s fitting in pretty nicely.

Although he’s yet to add to his totals on the score sheet, he is 100% in the face off dot and adds spark plug energy depth in roughly 10 minutes of ice time, including short-handed situations.

The soon-to-be 22-year old former Belleville Bulls‘ point-per-OHL game player is signed to a 3-year entry level deal through 2016/2017.

You can expect him to compete for a permanent spot on the parent club next season.

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New York Rangers‘ 6th year goalie, Swedish-born Magnus Hellberg(45) played a career high 53 AHL games with affiliate Hartford Wolf Pack posting an easy best 30 wins and 20 losses with a 2.40 GAA and .918 SV% including 4 shutouts.

Originally a Nashville Predators‘ 2nd round pick in the 2011 draft (#38 overall) he played his first two pro seasons in Allvenskan with Almtuna IS, then Frolunda HC of the SHL before coming to North America.

The big 6’5″ 200 lbs. net minder played most of his time with minor league team Milwaukee Admirals, but did get into his only NHL game in 2012 and also had a smattering of appearances in the ECHL for Cincinnati Cyclones.

As the just turned 25-year old was heading into his first restricted free agency at the end of 2014/2015, he was dealt to the Blueshirts and quickly signed to a two-year deal.

He was recalled on a couple of occasions but mostly for simple practice and back up purposes. He could easily slide into more big league time, especially if he keeps up the workload for the farm team.