• Big decisions regarding upcoming UFA goalies
• Could the flames make a move?
• Why the Leafs could trade a young striker
If you don't know someone, you have to be careful when you're joking with them.
"It's okay, you can joke about it," laughed Eric Comrie, minutes after AHL Manitoba had finished his Monday training. "I'm feeling much better now that I'm back in a familiar place."
September 7, 2019 – Jets signs a two-year, $ 1.4 million contract with Eric Comrie
Comrie knows Winnipeg very well and came to the Moose in 2015/16 as a full-time professional. He played 178 games in four years and got a taste of the NHL with five missions for the jets. Manitoba should be his home from 2019 to 20120.
But as my grandmother said: "You plan, God laughs."
"I knew I would give up," said Comrie. “(Jets Backup) Laurent Brossoit had a great year (last season). I was ready to go to the moose and apply as much pressure as possible. “Brossoit is slated to be an unrestricted free agent next summer, and Comrie knew that if he were impressed he would have a great chance of being Connor Hellebuyck's replacement 2020-21.
Instead, he embarked on a wild 90-day adventure that took him through three organizations, five teams, and one unexpected change after another. Comrie is not bitter or a little angry about what happened. But no doubt he hopes the whirlwind is over.
"It was different," he said. "I am grateful for the opportunities. It was difficult not to know where you would be after knowing every day for the past four years."
September 30, 2019 – Jets put Comrie on waivers
Oct. 1, 2019 – Claimed by Arizona
According to the coyotes, Comrie was unable to report immediately due to visa problems. He and his six-year-old girlfriend Haley Hull returned to their summer residence in Newport Beach, California.
"I had just gone shopping and had supplies like paper towels all year round," laughed Hull. "Whatever you can't use, you text all the other women and friends and try to share things for everyone. Eric has a guitar and I ask," Who wants a guitar? "
Hull, who is learning to become a Pilates instructor, was able to join Comrie on this odyssey. They spent two weeks in a Doubletree hotel before moving into a condominium.
"We spent a lot of time together," said Hull. "Drive many miles, fly many miles."
"I felt bad for her," added Comrie. "She made it great."
"It was a lot of packing … pretty crazy," she continued. "We have been in Winnipeg for a long time. It was nice to get to know other places. But it can be scary. The women from the other teams were incredible. Before we got to a new city, they had already reached me."
“You do a lot for charity in Arizona. It's not the biggest hockey market, but they make sure that (the women / friends) get together and work in the community. I liked that. Everyone felt like family. "
Comrie was added to the roster on October 10 and spent a month with the Coyotes before being sent to AHL Tucson. He went 4-0 for the Roadrunners.
"One of the best things about what happened was that I was working with some new people on my game," he said. In Arizona it is Corey Schwab with the big club and Zac Bierk in the development phase. Comrie appreciated the new perspectives and the handicrafts.
“Corey said to me, 'Don't go anywhere and try to be perfect. & # 39; He told me to focus on the next shot, accept the results and move on. "Schwab also told him not to be" sucked in a hurry "to move too far off the net when the opposition attacked. The exact wording was: "Trust your patience."
Jeff Marek and Elliotte Friedman talk to a lot of people in the hockey world and then tell the audience everything about what they heard and what they think about it.
November 30, 2019 – Comrie is transferred to Detroit for defender Vili Saarijarvi
Did he see this coming?
"No idea, no idea," said Comrie. "If anything, I thought I would be lifted again. Three goalkeepers (at NHL level) struggle for everyone."
Were you upset with the situation?
"No," he replied. “I saw it as if you saw a good player and that meant a lot to me. Arizona liked me, Detroit liked me. Putting on a Red Wings jersey … that was incredible. "
"We were lucky that the coach was at our home when Eric was traded," said Hull. “We had just set up the Christmas tree and had to put it down. We packed everything in 30 minutes. When we drove from Winnipeg to Arizona, we brought our winter clothes to Newport Beach and got our summer clothes. I had to go back and get her. "
Hull made the seven-hour drive to their off-season residence and flew to Michigan the next day. They lived in a Marriott. In Detroit, Comrie reunited with Adam Erne. The two played bantam hockey in California with the LA Selects.
Under Red Wings goalkeeper coach Jeff Salajko, Comrie worked to limit his stance and be more active with his racket. "He said to me:" Work as hard as you can, you will play games here. "I knew I would take action," said Comrie.
On December 7, he came off the bench in a 5-3 loss to Pittsburgh and stopped all four shots he had to Jonathan Bernier's relief. Three days later, his first year was in the city he knew best – Winnipeg.
"I'm a pretty serious guy during the games, I'm not kidding," said Comrie. “But these guys – they're all great guys – were over me during the game and tried to make me laugh. "Come on, you gotta let this in here."
He made 25 parades, but the jets won 5-1. Did Comrie have money on the board?
"Yes, I had a lot of money on the board," he laughs. "I really, really wanted to win. Unfortunately we didn't do that. "
He had another start and scored 28 saves in a 2-4 loss to Los Angeles.
Hull enjoyed Detroit. "This arena … I've never seen anything like it."
“The Biegas (Alex and Diana) were incredible. They offered to make dinner for us and do laundry with them. Jordan Filppula was constantly looking at how we were doing in this crazy time. "
December 18, 2019 – Red Wings sets Comrie on waivers
"This has been difficult for a while," said Comrie. "It was not unexpected. I knew that Jimmy Howard would be well and would return, and the Christmas stop meant that they had to do something. But it was the first step that someone didn't want me to."
"The thing to remember is that we have the great privilege of being here. You just have to allow things to take care of yourself and accept where you end up. I can only control my taxable goods I'm doing something I'm very happy for. "
Comrie also benefits from a family that understands the ups and downs of sport. Half-brothers Mike and Paul both played in the NHL. He played with his younger brother Ty in the WHL Tri-City Americans.
"I told him to keep working hard," said Mike Comrie by text. “Nobody works harder than he does. No specific advice will prepare you for this. "
December 19, 2019 – Jets are demanding compensation from Comrie
"I thought they would," says Comrie. "We had a good relationship and I'm grateful that they did it."
Do you need to find a new place?
"Actually no. I rented from Jack Rodewald [a Winnipeg native in the Florida Panthers organization] and didn't want to give it up until I knew I would be staying somewhere else. I felt like I could be back. "
Because you, the reader, are calling for all loose ends to be tied together, I asked Hull if she would like Eric's guitar to be returned. She laughed and said no.
They went to California during the Christmas period to take a “break for mental health”. We just had to regroup. "
There was still a hurdle to jump.
Chris Johnston: Comrie claims of the Jets, the retail market and the Golden Knights
December 19, 2019
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December 28, 2019 – Jets put Comrie on waivers
This was a procedural step to bring him back to the AHL – the move that started it all.
"We would joke that days like these were called Limbo Days," said Hull. "If you give up, you can't practice. He called me and said," Can you pick me up? "I think," Oh god, it'll happen again. "
"Seth Griffith was great at all of this," said Comrie of his Manitoba teammate. "He's a good friend, I drove him to the rink every day last year. He's had a season like this and knows what it's like." (That was 2016-17 when Griffith was signed by Boston, Toronto claimed then Florida, then Toronto again.)
Comrie cleaned up the next day and waited for his first start for the moose.
"As I said a few times in this interview, it was a great experience. People wanted me, I'm back where I'm happy and I'm doing what I like to do."
"We have learned that you both have to have a positive attitude," added Hull. "You have to make the best of the situation. One of the things we're talking about is all the new experiences we've had – for example, we had so much good food. "
"No matter what happened, it didn't change that Eric was a professional athlete. Not many people can say that."
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1. Six players have achieved "exceptional" status in the Canadian Hockey League, which enables them to join the draft early. Five were in the OHL (John Tavares, Aaron Ekblad, Connor McDavid, Sean Day and current rookie sensation Shane Wright), one in the QMJHL (Joe Veleno). The Western Hockey League never went that route. According to several sources, there are three applicants for the 2020-21 season. All come from the west.
There is Connor Bedard from North Vancouver, BC; and two from Dundurn, SK – Riley Heidt and Brayden Yager. Heidt and Yager are both at one point per game for Saskatoon contacts in the Saskatchewan Midget Triple-A League, the youngest players on their team. (Heather's uncle is Ryan Keller, a 10-year-old professional who played six games for the Ottawa Senators 2009/10. He is currently an assistant coach for the WHL Saskatoon Blades.) Bedard, also the youngest on his team, has 52 of 27 point games for the West Vancouver Academy in the Canadian Sport School Hockey League. I'm not an expert on it, but I wish all three the best of luck. And remember: if you don't get status, it's not the end of the world.
2. We could have news of Justin Williams' plans by the end of the weekend.
3. Remind you that players with one-year contracts can sign extensions from Wednesday, New Year's Day. Two of the most interesting will be Anthony Duclair (limited) from Ottawa and Robin Lehner (unlimited) from Chicago. I still don't understand that Duclair, who will have an arbitration case in the first all-star season of his career, has a lot to do. There is time left for the organization and the player to breathe to see where they are going.
4. One of the stories Lehner should follow in early 2020 is the goalkeeper market. There are good UFAs, whether you are looking for a starter or a backup. Where are the Blackhawks going with Corey Crawford and Lehner? The more important question might be where the Blackhawks are going, period. You have to make decisions when there is no game 83. Lehner clearly likes it there, and fit is important to him.
Vancouver will one day run a serious run against the outstanding Jacob Markstrom. But there are ceiling issues that need to be resolved. We'll be in Braden Holtby in a minute. There are some other strong 1A / backup options like Thomas Greiss (Islander), Jaroslav Halak (Boston), Anton Khudobin (Dallas), Pavel Francouz (Colorado) and Brossoit. Keeping Khudobin at its current $ 2.5 million will not be easy for the stars. And it is valuable enough to get more.
5. About Holtby: We reported last week that he and the capitals would not be negotiating during the season. (I received a text: "It happened in September … a way to catch up, insider.") There are a few things to recognize. First, he's not the type of guy who cares. Second, it's not the capitals that shaved off both John Carlson and TJ Oshie before they were extended. Third, some people warned me not to predict what Holtby would do. He thinks differently, and I mean that as a compliment. He could surprise us.
6. They are not UFAs, but some teams are curious about the direction of Pittsburgh. Casey DeSmith is committed to two more seasons. Tristan Jarry and Matt Murray are both restricted, and who do the penguins commit to? Anyone could have chosen Jarry for a second round last summer, now he's one of the great stories this season. As for Murray, there were some extension calls last summer, but things have stalled. There are many scenarios here in which you can use the time. The decisions will have ripple effects.
7. Let's go through some other situations. Calgary has additional bodies and some of the players who get on and off the lineup are unhappy. GM Brad Treliving will be careful, but it's always a delicate balance if you have unlucky players on a team with ambitions. There is interest in Mark Jankowski, who needs a fresh start. There is interest in Sam Bennett, who was scratched on Sunday. I am not convinced that the Flames want to do this unless the return is effective. But it is something to keep an eye on.
8. In Ottawa we may have seen it wrong. The focus was on Jean-Gabriel Pageau, who had a dynamic year in which a new contract was due. After the expansion of Thomas Chabot and Colin White, Brady Tkachuk is the Senators' top priority. What they think that number affects all other decisions. They will also ensure that the potential AHL Belleville customers they consider ready are not blocked. And I would not be surprised if Connor Brown, who is third, is also at the top of the priority list.
9. Brandon Saad isn't there right now, but there will be interest when he comes back. He has a cap hit of $ 6 million and cash volume of $ 6.5 million next season. I think Edmonton checked it, but it doesn't fit.
10. There are many comparisons between Marian Hossa and Brent Seabrook, but the two situations feel very different. It was not easy to confirm that Hossa would not play again, but when we finally got the information we needed, it was not denied that we were accurate in what we wanted to report. This is not the case with Seabrook. Hossa was ready, it was time. Seabrook himself has not spoken, but there is a serious doubt that he is ready to withdraw from the sport. Yes, he's frustrated and wasn't afraid to vent. Yes, I think there will be talks about his future and his willingness to move. But give up? I will believe it when I see it. He is a tough guy with a lot of pride in himself.
11. The Oilers beware of trade picks. There is no guarantee that everything will work, but the more lottery tickets you have, the better. They had no second or third place in 2015. The first place winner in 2016 is alienated from the organization. did not have a second round in 2017; nothing in rounds three to five in 2018; and six tips last year. This is one of the reasons why they passed Taylor Hall on – they didn't want to miss two more high selections. You can see disappointment with Leon Draisaitl and Connor McDavid when the rest of the Pacific catches the Oilers. St. Louis players in particular noticed how upset Draisaitl was when he missed a 1-2 loss to the blues on December 17. They thought that really hit him.
12. I went to the seventh game of the Calder Cup final in 2018 (Toronto beat Texas that night for the championship in a crowded, crazy ice rink – it was a fun evening). During one of the breaks I met the big Rich Clune who was not dressed for the game. He pointed to the person standing next to him and asked, "Have you ever met Jeremy Bracco?" He said: "You will see a lot of him." Bracco only undressed for four games in this run, but finished second in the AHL last season and is fifth in the assists this year.
His path to the Maple Leafs is blocked by an elite, elite ability and he wants to see if there is a better opportunity elsewhere. Toronto is ready to adapt, but apparently wasn't shy. I'm excited to see what the market is. I'm also excited to see if this could be part of a larger business. Ben Harpur and Dmytro Timashov have also asked Toronto to see what is out there for them.
13. After a good state of health, the voodoo doll of the Maple Leafs is stung. I forgot to add Ilya Mikheyev to the eligible list for January 1 above, but it had an excellent season before it was restricted by a skate cut last Friday. (By the way, the Devils deserve a lot of credit for how well they were prepared to deal with the situation, including a surgeon's willingness to hit the ambulance.) Head coach Sheldon Keefe liked him alongside John Tavares.
There are a number of Marlies who may get a shot at his striker, including three newer options: 23-year-old Egor Korshkov, a second-round goal from 2016 that was recently injured; Finn Kalle Kossila, 26, is limited to four games due to injury – but someone the organization likes. and 24-year-old Mason Marchment, who has also been injured. Marchment, Bryan's son, is a really nice story. Didn't play his first OHL game until he was 19, but he put himself in the status of a potential player. He's more of a bruise and the kind of player the Maple Leafs could use.
14. Much, much interest in Chris Kreider, no decision by the Rangers. "Lots of time," said a source. Look at her story again. Marc Staal's last contract was signed on January 18, 2015. In 2014 they signed Dan Girardi on February 28th. Last year they took Kevin Hayes and Mats Zuccarello with them. There is great interest – it is believed that they are competitors who may like to wait for cap reasons (Boston, St. Louis) and others who are not worried about it (Colorado). There's a lot of speculation about Montreal as the Canadians could use some beef, but Kreider's partial ban on trade affects it.
15. Lias Andersson has returned to Sweden. It remains to be seen whether the Rangers loaned him to a local team, as Edmonton did with Jesse Puljujarvi. (Can't hurt to let him play.) The Oilers took a tough stance with their winger, as did Dallas with Julius Honka. Like Andersson, they are young, former classics and are treated as such in trade talks. New York goes this way.
16. I think New Jersey is considering some of the available Buffalo defenders.
17. From what I understand about Ilya Kovalchuk, he hopes that some candidates will show more interest.
18. Did the penguins steal an old lady's handbag or something? They continued to look for a new home for Alex Galchenyuk, but lost Jake Guentzel for four to six months. Does the Galchenyuk give new life?
19. Don't look that way now, but if Vancouver wins against Chicago on Thursday, the Golden Knights will need four points in the next two games to prevent Travis Green from being the all-star – Pacific Division coach. Wasn't he fired last week?
20. Many reactions to John Tortorella's outbreak after the 2-3 loss to Chicago on Sunday. In all honesty, the first thing I thought of was that he is as angry about the defeat and injury to Joonas Korpisalo as anything else. It was a brutal result for the Blue Jackets trying to make their way into the wild card race. Korpisalo is second in the NHL on starts at 31, but if you look at his workload, it has really increased in the past few weeks (he had 10 appearances in 20 days from December 3rd to 23rd). They had to worry about pushing him too far.
I have observed the controversial clock situation in both programs. You couldn't hear it from Chicago, but the seconds ticked after Columbus whistled. (A cable is connected to both OB vans, which connects the watch to the score “Bug” (TV jargon for the screen graphic).) Apparently when the blue jackets caused too many men on the screen to time out cause two co-workers to time out -Trainers asked for a referee, whom they should contact the watch operator. Both were told that what was forwarded to Columbus Bank was correct. As furious as the NHL was at Tortorella's outbreak – and a ban was being considered – there were trainers / managers who privately stated that they supported him. He went back there on Monday.
If there was a phone call between Tortorella and Colin Campbell, the NHL should make it available on a 1-900 number for $ 3.99 / minute. The wage ceiling would increase by $ 10 million.
21. Injured with Korpisalo, the NHL needs a Metropolitan All-Star replacement. I would ask Henrik Lundqvist because he always seems to have a great time. He clearly likes it. Or why don't you go Jarry? Someone said to me that you cannot be sure that he is Pittsburgh's number one, but who cares? He's had a great year and will probably be thrilled to leave. I have to think that Markstrom gets Darcy Kuemper's place in the Pacific.
22. I can see Keith Tkachuk being asked if he would like to take part in a skills event with son Matthew. (Passer for accuracy contest?) The guys from FAN 960 in Calgary are already working to add Drew Doughty to the Pacific Division team so that he and Tkachuk can become teammates. Speaking of nothing, the first all-star game I worked for Hockey Night in Canada was Minnesota in 2004. I accompanied the dressing room setup day and was asked who should sit next to whom. I tried to put people side by side who had violent rivalries. I have never been invited to this process again.
23. Two weeks after the start of the season I don't know how many people expected Minnesota in the race, but here they are while the calendar flips. "I know people won't believe it, but I honestly thought the turning point was the loss for Dallas and St. Louis," said head coach Bruce Boudreau. That was in late October / early November. The Wild scored a 3-0 lead over the stars and lost two one-goal games against the defending champion. “In this game in Dallas, we basically put four of these goals into our own network. There was absolute silence in the room. Don't think we weren't worried about a duel with St. Louis. But I thought we played the blues really hard, and the boys kept playing the same way despite all the injuries. “One thing to note: The Wild have only played 16 home games so far, very few in the NHL.
24. Boudreau had a lot of praise in the lineup, from those you would expect to those you would not expect. From Marcus Foligno ("Fight Every Night") to Alex Stalock ("Boy, he's competitive. He stays in there and gives us a chance") to Carson Soucy ("To exceed expectations, you need someone who surprises you. He is our type ”). However, his greatest praise for Captain Mikko Koivu, who had recently suffered an injury to the lower body, was saved. "He brought him together with Kevin (Fiala) and Zach (Parise). There was a game where Mikko said something to Kevin on the bench, Kevin didn't answer … and let's say he made Kevin understand the message. He just wants everyone to get better. “Koivu is unrestricted after this year. "He is so competitive. That is my opinion … but his brother (Saku) played until he was 39. I think Mikko wants to play until he is 39." Mikko will be 37 in March.
25. When Thomas Chabot played 37:50 for the Senators on December 17 in Tampa Bay, we thought it was 15 seconds behind Dennis Wideman's ice age record. That's not the case. We thank the CBC star Karl Creighton, who has proven that Adrian Aucoin is in some way among the chessmen. Aucoin has actually held the top 3 (and 5 of the top 6) ice ages since its introduction as official statistics in 1997-98. He and Pavel Bure have the only games in the regular time of 40 minutes, with Aucoins peak on October 12, 2002 at the Islanders against Washington 40:51. Chabot's night is 11th.