Sean Leahy

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Sean Leahy is the associate editor of Puck Daddy since the blog started in April 2008. Having covered Stanley Cup Finals, NHL All-Star Games and NHL Drafts, his highlight might have been getting blown out playing Ryan Kesler in NHL2K11 on Nintendo Wii. That, or coercing an All-Star Game goal judge to let him control the goal light for a period. He currently resides on Long Island.

  • Sharks get their goalie, acquire Martin Jones from Bruins

    Doug Wilson missed out on Cam Talbot and dealt away Antti Niemi during NHL Draft weekend, leaving the San Jose Sharks without a goaltender as free agency approached.

    But on Tuesday, the Sharks general manager found his man after sending a 2016 first-round pick and unsigned prospect Sean Kuraly to the Bruins for Martin Jones, who had been dealt over the weekend from the Los Angeles Kings to Boston.

    Jones is set to become a restricted free agent on Wednesday and Bruins GM Don Sweeney said on a conference call that he was exploring possibilities for the 25-year old netminder.

    With the Jones deal and after dealing Milan Lucic to the Kings, Sweeney has been able to reel in a pair of first-rounders and Kuraly, who scored 19 goals and recorded 29 points in 40 games at Miami University last season. Not bad, considering the amount of flack he’s received since news of the Dougie Hamilton trade broke.

    This now sets up the Sharks with a goaltending tandem of Jones and Alex Stalock, who have a

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  • Hurricanes waive Alexander Semin, plan to buy him out

    After Alex Semin sat in the Carolina Hurricanes’ press box in mid-January as a healthy scratch, his general manager still had faith. “We think we can do it. We’re not giving up on him at all,” said Ron Francis at the time

    Well, the time has come and the Canes have seen enough. On Tuesday, the club announced they were placing Semin on unconditional waivers with the intent of buying out the remaining three years of his contract.

    In 2013, Semin signed a five-year, $35 million deal in the middle of a 13-goal, 44-point lockout-shortened campaign in his first year in Carolina. The extension was signed while the Russian forward was on a one-year, $7 million contract. Both deals were handed to him by former GM Jim Rutherford, who’s now with the Pittsburgh Penguins.

    According to War on Ice, Carolina will owe Semin nearly $14 million over the next six years and carry a $2.33 million cap hit through the 2020-21 NHL season should he clear waivers. The NHL’s deadline to buy out players is

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  • Patrick Kane told us it was coming. During the Chicago Blackhawks’ Stanley Cup parade earlier this month, the forward ended his speech at Soldier Field by saying, “I know you said I've been growing up, but watch out for me the next week.”

    There haven’t been any crazy drunken sightings of “Showtime” since then, but Kane and the Cup have made their way around Chicago since. On Saturday night, in what is now tradition, they appeared on stage at a Jimmy Buffet concert, with Kane working the tambourine.

    After the concert, still donning his Parrothead hat, Kane stopped at Riley’s Gathering Place to do a little karaoke, Tom Petty-style:

    According to the Chicago Sun-Times, once Kane finished “Free Falling,” one of the Cup keepers brought the trophy into the bar for fans to enjoy.

    We're looking forward to when Kane eventually retires and he turns into hockey's Bill Walton and follows Buffet around on tour every summer.

    - - - - - - -

    Sean Leahy is the associate editor for Puck Daddy on Yahoo

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  • Bruins send 2017 3rd-round pick to Flyers for Zac Rinaldo

    "I think we lost our team identity this year. We weren't as tough a team to play against as we'd like to be, and as we were in year's past.”

    Those were the words of Boston Bruins president Cam Neely at the end of the regular season; one in which he watched his team fail to qualify for the playoffs on the final day.  

    Well, if Neely was looking to get back to the Big Bad Bruins days, acquiring Zac Rinaldo will help you get there. 

    On Monday, GM Don Sweeney kept making moves by trading a 2017 3rd-round pick to the Philadelphia Flyers for 25-year old Rinaldo.

    Here’s what the Bruins will get in Rinaldo, from Travis Hughes of Broadstreet Hockey, a Flyers blog:

    Rinaldo was a fan favorite in Philly for a lot of reasons, but the reality is that he's a below-replacement level player who has done nothing to prove that he deserves a regular job with an NHL team. He brings fire and energy and physicality to a game, but he takes too many penalties and suspensions to effectively help his team on a

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  • Stars ink Antti Niemi to three-year, $13.5 million deal

    The Dallas Stars have signed Antti Niemi to a three-year, $13.5 million deal, committing themselves to $10.4 million in goal for the next three seasons.

    Locking up Niemi doesn’t mean Kari Lehtonen is going anywhere, even coming off a down season. Stars GM Jim Nill said his thought process on acquiring and then signing Niemi was to solidify the goaltending position.

    “Kari is still an elite goalie,” Nill said on Saturday after the NHL Draft. “We just, we’re in a tough situation with our travel. We have as much travel as anybody in the league and back-to-back games.

    "I really think it’s becoming a two-goalie league now You look around the league, the teams that have a lot of success, it’s because of two goalies and the pressure to win. Injuries. We have cap room right now. We know we have to improve this position and we went this direction.”

    Nill is right in that the Stars have some rough travel. Looking at Dirk Hoag’s great Super Schedule from last season, Dallas traveled the second-most

    Read More »from Stars ink Antti Niemi to three-year, $13.5 million deal
  • Sabres place Cody Hodgson on waivers; buyout coming

    The Buffalo Sabres could have given Cody Hodgson a two-year bridge deal in 2013, but decided on a six-year, $25.5 million pact instead. Nearly two years later, the winger has been put on unconditional waivers by the team with the intent of buying out his contract. 

    Hodgson was dealt to the Sabres at the 2012 trade deadline from the Vancouver Canucks and in three-and-a-half seasons tallied 44 goals and 99 points. This past season was his worst during his tenure in Buffalo where he scored six goals and 13 points over 78 games while watching his ice time diminish nearly six minutes compared to the previous two seasons. As Bill Hoppe of the Olean Times Herald pointed out, the 25-year old had goal droughts of 19, 27 and 47 games in 2014-15.

    Things started so promising in Buffalo, though…

    Per General Fanager, should Hodgson clear waivers and have the final four years of his deal bought out by the Sabres, he’ll be paid $791,666 over the next eight seasons and Buffalo will carry a cap hit of

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  • Devan Dubnyk, Wild agree to six-year, $25 million extension

    All Chuck Fletcher has wanted is stability in goal. He hopes he got that on Saturday after the Minnesota Wild agreed to a six-year, $25 million extension Devan Dubnyk.

    The Wild used four goaltenders during the 2012-13 season, five last season and four in 2014-15. So you can see why giving Dubnyk six years will give Fletcher and the Wild hope that they’ve found their guy to man the nets into the next decade. 

    From Mike Russo of the Star Tribune, who broke the story:

    On the risk of giving Dubnyk such term after half a season of great play, Fletcher said, "He’s 29 years old. He’s entering the prime of his career. He’s had some good seasons in Edmonton and had a great season this year. We’re not asking him to duplicate what he did this year every year. Maybe that’s not realistic, but we believe he can be a good goaltender in this league. He's right at the stage of his career where he's ready to take off.”

    After acquiring Dubnyk in January from the Arizona Coyotes, the Wild turned their

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  • Flames' Oliver Kylington to use NHL Draft drop as motivation

    SUNRISE, Fla. — The waiting was the hardest part for Oliver Kylington. The 18-year defenseman from Sweden was pegged by many as a first rounder, but fell to 60th and the Calgary Flames.

    “It was a bit tough,” he said after the selection. “I was nervous sitting there and waiting, but I’m just happy now be part of the NHL and part of the Calgary Flames.”

    Kylington said he had a clue he’d go anywhere from 15, which Calgary originally had before dealing it as part of the Dougie Hamilton trade, to the second round, but he knew to expect the unexpected. The Flames had expressed interest, speaking with him in Stockholm and again during the NHL Combine earlier this month in Buffalo. 

    The 6-foot, 185 lbs. blueliner played 35 games between Farjsted and AIK last season, posting 6 goals and 12 points. He was also busy internationally, repping Sweden at the U-18s and with the U-20 team.

    "He's a mobile, good, two-way defenseman with excellent skating ability," NHL Director of European Scouting Goran

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  • Stars acquire Antti Niemi's negotiating rights for 7th-round pick

    Kari Lehtonen’s time in Dallas may not be for long, or Stars GM Jim Nill wants to go heavy on experience in net next season.

    Not long into the start of Round 2 of the NHL Draft on Saturday, the Stars acquired the negotiating rights to Antti Niemi from the San Jose Sharks in exchange for pick No. 193. Niemi is set to become an unrestricted free agent on July 1, so Nill has until Wednesday to work out a deal. 

    "Antti is a proven goaltender, who has played and succeeded at the highest levels," Nill said. "He's one of the hardest working goalies out there and we look forward to working towards an agreement.”

    Lehtonen saw a bit of a career turnaround after being dealt from Atlanta in 2010. From last season he dropped off. After posting even-strength save percentages of .926, .924 and .925, he put up a .909 number in 2014-15. 

    With Niemi gone, this leaves San Jose with only Alex Stalock, Troy Grosenick and Joel Rumpel as goalies under contract in their organization. The Sharks were in on Cam

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  • Why Arizona Coyotes didn't trade the No. 3 pick

    SUNRISE, Fla. — Don Maloney knew that Dylan Strome would be his pick once the NHL Draft Lottery determined the Arizona Coyotes would be selecting No. 3 Friday night. The only thing that would change that was whether he would deal the pick after a number of teams showed interest.

    The Coyotes were in on the Dougie Hamilton sweepstakes. It would have been a move that would cause Maloney to trade out the third spot. The idea of Hamilton and Oliver Ekman-Larsson on the blueline for the next decade was tempting, but he kept coming back to the feeling he needed to fill a hole down the middle.

    “At the end the day I just felt the only way to build a champion is you have to have a center ice that’s strong,” Maloney said after Round 1 at the BB&T Center.

    Maloney said he received two “signifcant" offers to deal No. 3 outright, without a pick coming back in return. But his mind kept returning to need, and the only way he would deal out of that spot would be if he was assured Strome would still be

    Read More »from Why Arizona Coyotes didn't trade the No. 3 pick

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