|Video: Adam McQuaid races with royalty||07.06.11 at 11:04 am ET|
While Bruins fans spent the fourth of July eating hamburgers and watching fireworks, B’s defenseman and Prince Edward Island native Adam McQuaid did something that would make more than just mullet aficionados jealous.
With the royal couple in McQuaid’s neck of the woods for a dragon boat race on Dalvay Lake, the Boston blueliner rowed in Kate Middleton‘s boat, which was bested by that of Prince William.
“Even though I lost the race,” McQuaid told The Guardian, “some people might argue I won because I got to be in her boat.”
McQuaid can be seen rowing at 0:27 and 1:10 of the following video, and at 1:33, he even stops to chat with Middleton for a moment. You know the 24-year-old has had a good few months when the only thing he’s lost is a boat race in which he hung out with royalty.
|Meet new Bruins defenseman Joe Corvo||07.05.11 at 10:51 pm ET|
The Bruins didn’t take long in their search to replace Tomas Kaberle, as they traded a fourth-round pick to Carolina for Hurricanes defenseman Joe Corvo. The former Kings, Senators, Hurricanes and Capitals blueliner comes to Boston after his second stint in Carolina.
Height/Weight: 6-foot-0, 204 pounds
Draft: Fourth round, 83rd overall in the 1997 draft by the Kings.
Contractual status: Has one year remaining on his current deal, commands a $2.25 million cap hit.
2010-11 stats: 11 goals, 29 assists, 40 points, minus-14.
WHAT HE BRINGS
The Bruins are replacing one mid-thirties puck-moving defenseman with another, just at a lower price. Corvo will likely inherit Kaberle’s power play minutes, but he doesn’t give the puck up as easily as Kaberle did in his time with the Bruins. Fans in Boston likely won’t complain about Corvo’s shooting the way they did with Kaberle. Corvo had 191 shots on goal last season to Kaberle’s 130.
Corvo also provides the Bruins with another righty-shooting defenseman, meaning the B’s blueline will now be evenly split. Adam McQuaid and Johnny Boychuk are also right shots.
WHY THEY MADE THE DEAL
At the end of the day (literally), the final product after a busy hour seems to favor the Bruins. All things considered, losing Kaberle but saving money with a replacement who also happens to be right-handed is arguably a better scenario than re-signing Kaberle in the first place.
Kaberle’s new deal will call for the same annual cap hit ($4.25 million) as his last one. Corvo’s cap hit saves the B’s $2 million, and considering that he will be a free agent at the end of the season, they don’t need to worry about being saddled with the money of a player whose production is declining. With Kaberle, that would have to be an obvious concern over the next three seasons.
This now means three of the Bruins’ defensemen (the three right-handed shots in Corvo, McQuaid and Boychuk) will see their contracts expire at season’s end, and while McQuaid is restricted, the other two will be unrestricted free agents. They could have Dougie Hamilton ready for the start of the 2012-13 season, so it shouldn’t be hard to make room.
“This came as a surprise to me and a very pleasant surprise. I’m very happy to be with a team that’s coming off such an outstanding season and really hasn’t made many changes at all. I just think at this point in my career, this is just an excellent opportunity to win, and to have the chance to win. I couldn’t be any happier.”
“He’s a tremendous skater, very quick so he’s good at retrieving pucks and skating them up through the neutral zone and making a good clean pass. He’s got a terrific shot, and I’ve seen him score often on one timers, I’ve seen him score often on receiving a pass and shooting. He’s very dangerous that way, so he gives us another hard shot from the right side. To me, with respect to the power play’¦ obviously I liked his shot, but his skating and passing helps with the entries and he’ll be an asset to our power play.”
Hailing from Oak Park, Ill., Corvo is now the third American player in the 2011-12 projected lineup. Goaltender Tim Thomas and defenseman Steven Kampfer are both from Michigan. Matt Bartkowksi, who played six games in the NHL last season, is a Pittsburgh native.
|Bruins sign forwards Jamie Tardif and Josh Hennessy||07.05.11 at 6:01 pm ET|
Shortly after announcing their trade for defenseman Joe Corvo, the Bruins announced a couple of depth signings, as they inked forwards Jamie Tardif and Josh Hennessy to deals. Tardif’s pact is for two-years, while Hennessy comes in on a one-year contract.
Tardif, 26, was a fourth-round pick of the Flames back in 2003. He has never played in the NHL and spent the last five seasons playing for Grand Rapids, the AHL affiliate of the Red Wings.
Hennessy, a Brockton native and 2003 second-round pick of the Sharks (43rd overall), has one goal in 20 career NHL games.
|Peter Chiarelli on Tomas Kaberle: ‘We weren’t able to reach common ground’||07.05.11 at 5:43 pm ET|
Bruins general manager Peter Chiarelli didn’t want to spend much of Joe Corvo‘s introductory conference call discussing the loss of Tomas Kaberle, but did admit that there was a connection between the B’s losing their puck-mover to Carolina and trading for the man he replaced on the Hurricanes.
“They are connected to a certain degree,” Chiarelli said. “We had some talks with Tomas and with his agent. I think one of the stumbling blocks was term, and I can completely respect why Tomas would want some form of term. We weren’t able to reach common ground in that respect, and I’ve been nibbling at this opportunity for a bit to acquire Joe. It came down to maybe Carolina was going to sign Tomas.”
The Hurricanes inked Kaberle to a three-year, $12.75 million deal, meaning he did not take a pay cut from the $4.25 million cap hit over the course of his previous deal. Corvo is in the final year of his current contract, and the 34-year-old will carry a $2.25 million cap hit.
“At this point in my career, this is just an excellent opportunity to win and have a chance to win,” he said. “I couldn’t be more happy.”
|Bruins trade for Joe Corvo to replace Tomas Kaberle||07.05.11 at 4:53 pm ET|
Minutes after losing defenseman Tomas Kaberle to the Hurricanes, the Bruins acquired his replacement in Hurricanes puck-mover Joe Corvo. The B’s sent their fourth-round pick in the 2012 draft to Carolina in exchange for the 34-year-old.
Corvo is coming off a career year, as he played in all 82 games for the first time and scored 11 goals and had 29 assists for a career-high 40 points. He has one year remaining on his contract and will command a $2.25 million cap hit, which is $2 million less than what Kaberle will make in each of the next three years.
In adding the Illinois native, the B’s also have add another right shot to their blueline, and assuming he replaces Kaberle in the lineup, the B’s blueline will now feature three left-handed shots (Zdeno Chara, Dennis Seidenberg and Andrew Ference) and three righties (Corvo, Adam McQuaid and Johnny Boychuk).
In his career, Corvo has played for the Kings, Senators, Hurricanes and Capitals. He is coming off his second stint with Carolina, as he returned to the Hurricanes in 2010 after previously being traded to Washington.
|Source: Tomas Kaberle still in talks with Bruins, not close to a decision||07.04.11 at 10:31 am ET|
According to a source familiar with the situation, free agent defenseman Tomas Kaberle remains in contact with the Bruins and is also talking to multiple other teams, but it isn’t likely that he’ll be signing with anyone in the immediate future.
The source told WEEI.com on Monday that Kaberle is “not likely to make a decision until sometime next week.”
Kaberle finished last season with the Bruins, winning his first Stanley Cup after being acquired from the Maple Leafs in exchange for center Joe Colborne, the Bruins’ 2011 first-round pick, and their 2012 second-rounder. The 33-year-old finished last season with four goals and 43 assists for 47 points.
The puck-moving defenseman is one of two members of the Stanley Cup-winning lineup to hit unrestricted free agency. Forward Michael Ryder took a two-year, $7 million deal with the Stars on Friday, while Kaberle is currently the top unsigned defenseman. The Bruins certainly have the salary cap space to get a deal done, but he did not perform up to expectations after coming to the B’s on Feb. 18, so the team, as well as others, could be hesitant to give him an annual number close to the $4.25 cap hit he carried over the course of his last contract.
In the playoffs, Kaberle tied Dennis Seidenberg for the team lead amongst defenseman in points. Prior to coming to the Bruins, he played his entire career for the Maple Leafs, a tenure in which he was named an All-Star four times.
While Kaberle remains unsigned, multiple other defensemen received long-term deals last week, including Kevin Bieksa (five years, $23 million with the Canucks), Christian Ehrhoff (10 years, $40 million with the Sabres), James Wisniewski (six years, $33 million with the Blue Jackets) and Ed Jovanovski (four years, $16.5 million with the Panthers).
If the Bruins do not bring Kaberle back, 22-year-old Steven Kampfer, who played 38 games for the B’s in the 2010-11 season, would likely step in as the sixth defenseman for Boston.
|Penguins sign Boris Valabik||07.03.11 at 1:59 pm ET|
The Bruins lost another free agent on Sunday, and though the player was big, the loss could hardly be described as such. The Penguins inked defenseman Boris Valabik, who was acquired with Rich Peverley in the Feb. 18 deal with Atlanta, to a one-year, two way deal on the third day of free agency.
Given the results it yielded, it would be hard not to give Bruins general manager two thumbs up for trading Blake Wheeler and Mark Stuart to Atlanta in a deal that landed the B’s Peverley. Yet Valabik proved to be nothing more than a throw-in in the deal, playing 10 games for Providence and totaling two assists and 24 penalty minutes. He had a minus-1 rating with the Baby B’s.
Valabik was chosen 10th overall by the Thrashers in the 2004 draft, but has made a minimal impact on the big stage since. He’s skated in 80 games, all of which were with the Thrashers, and totaled seven points (all assists) and 210 penalty minutes. At 6-foot-7 and 245 pounds, the Slovakia native is one of the biggest players in the league. He once fought the biggest when he took on fellow countryman and hero Zdeno Chara back in 2008.