Greg Wyshynski

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Greg Wyshynski is the editor of Puck Daddy. A former managing sports editor for The Connection Newspapers, he's written for Deadspin, AOL Sports and is the author of "Glow Pucks & 10-Cent Beer: The 101 Worst Ideas in Sports History." Born and bred in New Jersey, living in Northern Virginia. Did we mention he likes booze?

  • Why do the Red Wings repulse free agents?

    David E. Klutho /Sports Illustrated/Getty ImagesDavid E. Klutho /Sports Illustrated/Getty Images

    To understand the Detroit Red Wings, you first have to understand the plight of Atlantic City, New Jersey. 

    The New Jersey resort town could see three of its 12 casinos close by Labor Day, according to analysts, having watched revenues fall by close to $2.5 billion since 2006. The main culprit: Competition in surrounding areas, as casinos have opened in Pennsylvania, Maryland and New York, as well as the siren’s song of online wagering.

    Atlantic City believed it always had the advantage. It had nostalgia on the boardwalk. It had tradition on the beach. It was, in many ways, the only game in town.

    "The game has changed. Players can go wherever they want."

    That was Red Wings general manager Ken Holland on Tuesday, lamenting the fact that his team whiffed on every major free agent to whom it pitched. Dan Boyle, their prime target, took less money to sign for two years with the New York Rangers. Matt Niskanen, to whom they were willing to give seven years and a reported $38.5 million,

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  • Marek Vs. Wyshynski Podcast: NHL free agent triumphs and failures


    LISTEN HERE! [And if that doesn't work, try here.]

    It's a Wednesday edition of Marek vs. Wyshynski beginning at 2 p.m. ET/11 a.m. PT, and we're talking about the following and more:

    Special Guest Star: No one! Just your boys.

    • Complete recap of the free agent frenzy. 

    • Winners! 

    • Losers! 

    • Big name trades on the horizon?

    Question of the Day: Jeff and Greg are GOING POSTAL! Ask us anything! Email or hit us on Twitter with the hashtag #MvsW to @wyshynski or @jeffmarek. Click here for the Sportsnet live stream or click the play button above!

    Click here to download podcasts from the show each day. Subscribe to the podcast via iTunes or Feedburner.

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  • Steve Downie signed by Pittsburgh Penguins, reunited with Tocchet

    Before he became an assistant coach with the Pittsburgh Penguins, Rick Tocchet was the head coach of the Tampa Bay Lightning. One of the players he had was Steve Downie, a 21-year-old forward whose hockey talent was overshadowed by frequent moments of violent idiocy. 

    Tocchet helped refine and balance his game, turning Downie into something many weren’t sure he’d ever become: a viable NHL player, rather than a liability.

    On Wednesday, the two were reunited with the Pittsburgh Penguins, as Downie signed a 1-year, $1-million deal as an unrestricted free agent. He split his time between Colorado and Philadelphia last season, as the Avalanche traded him to the Flyers for (former Penguin) Max Talbot.

    (The catalyst for that trade is a point of some debate.)

    As a Flyers analyst, Tocchet praised the trade and called Downie a “top six forward” that could open up space for Claude Giroux. Considering the abuse Sidney Crosby’s taken without recourse – hi Marc Staal – one wonders if he can fill the

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  • Claude Giroux arrested for copping a feel in Ottawa

    Claude Giroux was arrested on Tuesday night in Ottawa. It was for an incident involving a police officer.

    According to the Ottawa Sun, it was a holding penalty:

    Although few details were immediately available, a source said Giroux was arrested for repeatedly grabbing the buttocks of a male police officer. 

    Claude, dude, they’re supposed to give YOU the cavity search…

    Witnesses say that the incident occurred outside The Great Canadian Cabin, which might be the most Canadian sounding bar outside of Mississauga’s The Mountie Beaver. Police refused comment to the Sun unless charges were formalized, but a police source says Giroux is expected to be released on Wednesday without any criminal charges.

    In a Shyamalanian twist, sources tell the paper that they believe “alcohol was involved.” So perhaps Giroux will spend the offseason vacationing on Dry Island.

    No word if he suffered any damage to his wrist, hand or fingers, and thus adding to the ever growing tradition of bizarre offseason

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  • Puck Daddy's 2014 NHL Free Agency Chatterbox! (Day 2)

    Here we go again … it’s NHL FREE AGENT FRENZY DAY!

    Once again, the Puck Daddy Free Agent Frenzy Chatterbox will have all the breaking signings and trades and analysis in one handy location.

    The Chatterbox offers breaking news and insider insight in one place; to have, at the end of the day, a chronological review of the NHL Free Agent Frenzy's rumors and facts; and as a place for your friends at Puck Daddy to pop in and out during the day for quick chats.

    You can read Day 1 of the Chatterbox here.

    For NHL Free Agent Frenzy we've compiled a bunch of Twitter feeds from some of the best hockey journalists, news-breakers and entertaining analysts for your viewing enjoyment.

    Kevin Allen of USA Today; Pierre LeBrun of ESPN; Nick Kypreos of Sportsnet; Michael Russo of the Star Tribune; Bob McKenzie of TSN; Darren Dreger of TSN; Elliotte Friedman of CBC Sports; John Shannon of Sportsnet; Craig Custance of ESPN; Andy Strickland of True Hockey; Cap Geek from, uh Cap Geek; Rob Rossi of the

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  • Rick Jeanneret fighting throat cancer; Sabres voice plans return

    Few voices are as synonymous with an NHL team. Few voices are as beloved by fans of an NHL team. So the mission is clear for Rick Jeanneret: Beat cancer, and get back in front of a microphone to call Buffalo Sabres games. 

    Jeanneret, a 43-year broadcasting veteran, told the Buffalo News that he has been diagnosed with throat cancer. “I would like to stress I have every intention of coming back,” said Jeanneret. “I have probably three months ahead of me that aren’t going to be fun. I know they aren’t going to be.”

    From the Buffalo News:

    Jeanneret, who has missed only a handful of games because of illness in his 43 years with the Sabres, said his symptoms began late in the past NHL season, when he had a nagging sore throat that eventually led him to visit a doctor. An independent contractor with the Sabres, Jeanneret’s health insurance is in Canada and not in the United States. “I thought it would pass,” he said of his sore throat.

    When it didn’t, his doctor sent him to an ear, nose and

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  • Niskanen, Orpik determined to prove contract critics wrong for Caps

    The Washington Capitals handed defensemen Brooks Orpik and Matt Niskanen $60.30 million in free-agent money, but the biggest beneficiaries of these contracts may be the North American carpentry industry, who spent most of Tuesday repairing floors that had been damaged by thousands of dropping jaws... 

    Both played for the Capitals’ frequent tormentors the Pittsburgh Penguins – Orpik, 33, had played 11 seasons there while Niskanen, 27, was there for four seasons. Orpik, a stay-at-home-defenseman and one of the NHL’s most notorious hitters, inked a 5-year, $27-million deal with the Capitals; Niskanen, a puck-moving defender who had a career year in 2013-14, signed a 7-year, $40.25-million contract that was the longest deal handed out on Day 1 of free agency.

    “It’s a big commitment by our organization,” said GM Brian MacLellan. “I’m excited about it. I hope they are too.”

    Was Orpik worth that deal?

    The defenseman laughs at the query. “That’s probably a better question for the people who

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  • For Canucks GM Jim Benning, it’s Miller Time again

    It was the fifth round of the 1999 NHL Draft. Jim Benning was the director of amateur scouting for the Buffalo Sabres, who had pick No. 138 in the fifth round. Still on the board: a skinny kid from Michigan State University named Ryan Miller. 

    Benning was impressed with the young goalie, and pitched the pick to the Sabres braintrust seated at the table. It came to his attention that Mike Luit, former NHL goalie and Miller’s agent, was seated in the stands at FleetCenter in Boston.

    “Back then, it wasn’t like two minutes to the next pick,” recalled Benning. “So I went up in the stands and I asked Mike, ‘Is this the time to take Ryan in the draft?’ And he said, ‘Yup, this is Miller Time.’”

    Miller would go on to play 559 games in the NHL with the Sabres and briefly with the St. Louis Blues, winning 294 of them. He’s win the 2010 Vezina Trophy and rose to stardom as the goalie for the U.S. men’s hockey team in the Vancouver Games, coming within a goal of gold.

    Funny how hockey works

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  • Brad Richards takes his talents (and buyout money) to Chicago

    Brad Richards made out OK in his free-agent contract and compliance buyout, both executed by the New York Rangers. Overall, he’ll have earned around $51 million, both in salary paid and deferred salary over the next 12 years. 

    So money wasn’t a huge consideration for Richards. But winning a Stanley Cup, and rehabilitating his career, were. So the former Conn Smythe winner signed a 1-year, $2-million contract with the Chicago Blackhawks, as first reported by TSN. The contract also carries a no-movement clause.

    Richards is 34 years old and is coming off a season in which he had 51 points in 82 games, the lowest points-per-game average (0.62) of his career. He started the postseason strongly with five points in five games; he finished terribly, with two assists in 10 games, and a single assist in the Stanley Cup Final against Los Angeles.

    One assumes the Blackhawks will give him a shot at No. 2 center behind Jonathan Toews – perhaps as the set-up guy for Patrick Kane – but if not, he’ll

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  • Anton Stralman gets 5 years with Tampa; Yzerman upgrades defense

    The Tampa Bay Lightning cleared the decks on Sunday night, creating cap space for an further upgrade to their defense. After Dan Boyle, a veteran target, signed with the New York Rangers, the Bolts opted for the defenseman Boyle is replacing in New York: Anton Stralman. 

    Tampa signed Stralman to a 5-year, $22.5-million deal on Tuesday, which were the terms he was seeking from the Rangers. That's a $4.5 million annual cap hit. 

    Stralman had 13 points in 81 games for the Rangers last season. He’s four seasons removed from his best offensive season, which was 34 points in 73 games for the Columbus Blue Jackets in 2009-10.

    But points aren’t the point for Stralman. He’s a possession driving player on the blueline who should fit well in coach Jon Cooper’s system. Any questions about his defensive prowess were answered during his outstanding playoff run for the Rangers, consistently one of the Blueshirts’ best defenders -- sometimes in a goal-saving way.

    Like Boyle, Stralman is a right-handed

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