Interesting times ahead for Canadian NHL teams | Hockey | CBC Sports

Hockey Night in CanadaInteresting times ahead for Canadian NHL teams

Posted: Monday, July 8, 2013 | 04:57 PM

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The Vancouver Canucks will be sticking with veteran Roberto Luongo in net, while the Ottawa Senators will be moving on without their long-time captain Daniel Alfredsson. (Getty Images/CBCSports.ca) The Vancouver Canucks will be sticking with veteran Roberto Luongo in net, while the Ottawa Senators will be moving on without their long-time captain Daniel Alfredsson. (Getty Images/CBCSports.ca)

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There still will be plenty of moves to come before training camps open on Sept. 12. But for now, let's take a look the seven-team Canadian contingent and the moves they have made in the past month.
The Edmonton Oilers and Toronto Maple Leafs were the busiest of the Canadian teams since the end of the 2012-13 NHL season, but they will have to wait a few months to see how much they improve on the ice.

The Ottawa Senators were the most successful last season, being the only Canadian-based team to visit the second round of the playoffs. 

Yet, the Senators and their fans have suffered the most off-season heartbreak with the unexpected departure of their captain Daniel Alfredsson.


There still will be plenty of moves to come before training camps open on Sept. 12. But for now, let's take a look the seven-team Canadian contingent and the moves they have made in the past month.

Calgary Flames

Last season: Finished 25th overall at 19-25-4 to miss the playoffs for a fourth season in a row.

In with the new: G Reto Berra, G Karri Ramo, D Kris Russell, D Shane O'Brien, D Chad Billins, RW David Jones, LW T.J. Galiardi. 

Out with the old: G Miikka Kiprusoff, D Cory Sarich, LW Alex Tanguay.

The skinny: Flames general manager Jay Feaster began his roster renovation at the trade deadline by moving out stars Jarome Iginla and Jay Bouwmeester. Feaster has added organizational depth, but not much young star power. First-round selection (sixth overall) centre Sean Monahan is the wild card. The 18-year-old from Brampton, Ont. has the skill and smarts to play in the NHL right away, but do the Flames want to rush him into the pro ranks?

Edmonton Oilers

Last season: Finished 24th overall at 19-22-7 to miss the playoffs for a seventh consecutive season, the longest current streak of its kind in the NHL.

In with the new: G Jason LaBarbera, G Richard Bachman, D Andrew Ference, D Philip Larsen, C Boyd Gordon, LW Jesse Joensuu.

Out with the old: G Nikolai Khabibulin, D Mark Fistric, D Theo Peckham, D Ryan Whitney, C Eric Belanger, C Shawn Horcoff, C Jerred Smithson.  

The skinny: Oilers rookie GM Craig MacTavish tried but failed to obtain forward David Clarkson through free agency as well as goalie Cory Schneider, defenceman Braydon Coburn and forward Cal Clutterbuck via trades. MacTavish, however, did strengthen his roster with Ference and Gordon. But whether or not the Oilers slip into the playoffs depends on their talented core of kids and the immediate impact of bench boss Dallas Eakins, the Oilers' fifth head coach since their trip to the 2005-06 Stanley Cup final.

Montreal Canadiens

Last season: Finished an impressive fourth overall at 29-14-5, but went out in the first round of the playoffs in a five-game series against Ottawa.

In with the new: RW Daniel Briere, RW George Parros, LW Nick Tarnasky.

Out with the old: D Tomas Kaberle, D Yannick Weber, RW Colby Armstrong, RW Michael Ryder.

The skinny: It didn't end well for the Canadiens with their first-round playoff exit. But this team has plenty of depth on the blue-line and the roster improved up front with the addition of Briere's offence. The biggest off-season acquisition for GM Marc Bergevin, though, was goaltender coach Stéphane Waite from the Chicago Blackhawks. If the 44-year-old Waite can improve Carey Price's game, the Habs will be even better. No pressure Stéphane. The rest of the country is depending on him to make Price better for the 2014 Olympics, too. 


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Ottawa Senators

Last season: Finished 14th overall at 25-17-6 and lost out to the Pittsburgh Penguins in the second round.

In with the new: D Joe Corvo, RW Bobby Ryan, LW Clarke MacArthur. 

Out with the old: D Andre Benoit, D Sergei Gonchar, RW Daniel Alfredsson, RW Guillaume Latendresse, C Peter Regin. 

The skinny: The loss of Alfredsson will linger all summer. The fans are hurt. The front office was shaken. The Senators also let local product Benoit skate to the Colorado Avalanche. But on paper, Ottawa just may be a better team with the addition of sniper Ryan. A full season from Jason Spezza, Erik Karlsson and Craig Anderson will help. They also need second-line production. There will be pressure on second-year forward Cory Conacher in his first full season with the Senators.  

Toronto Maple Leafs

Last season: Finished ninth overall at 26-17-5 and took the Boston Bruins to a Game 7 in the first round, only to blow a 4-1 lead in the third period.

In with the new: G Jonathan Bernier, D T.J. Brennan, C Dave Bolland, RW David Clarkson. 

Out with the old: G Ben Scrivens, D Mike Komisarek, D Ryan O'Byrne, C Mikhail Grabovski, RW Matt Frattin. LW Clarke MacArthur.

The skinny: Maple Leafs general manager Dave Nonis upgraded his roster with the trades for Bernier and Bolland as well as the free-agent signing of Clarkson. But there still remains a couple of questions to be answered in the fall: can the Maple Leafs overcome the mental anguish of their meltdown in Beantown and how will Nazem Kadri follow up his impressive first full season in the NHL? Kadri could find himself alongside Joffrey Lupul and Clarkson on the second line.

Vancouver Canucks

Last season: Finished eighth overall at 26-15-7, but for the second year in a row they were eliminated in the first round of the playoffs.

In with the new: D Yannick Weber, C Brad Richardson, C Mike Santorelli.

Out with the old: G Cory Schneider, D Keith Ballard, D Cam Barker, C Andrew Ebbett, C Max Lapierre, C Manny Malhotra, C Derek Roy, LW Mason Raymond.

The skinny: Canucks GM Mike Gillis has added a new coach in John Tortorella and two centres in Richardson and Santorelli, and jettisoned Schneider to alleviate salary cap problems. Now what will the old/new No. 1 goalkeeper Roberto Luongo do? Luongo has been rather silent on his future for the last 10 days. He has nine years and $40.5-million left on his lucrative contract, yet he doesn't appear happy that he's the goalie left in town to play for Tortorella.  

Winnipeg Jets

Last season: Finished 18th overall at 24-21-3 and missed the playoffs for the sixth season in a row, if you count this organization's Atlanta years.

In with the new: D Adam Pardy, RW Devin Setoguchi, RW Michael Frolik. 

Out with the old: D Ron Hainsey, C Alexander Burmistrov, C Mike Santorelli, C Nik Antropov, C Kyle Wellwood.

The skinny: The Jets still have a long way to go before they will be considered a contender, but acquiring forwards Setoguchi and Frolik was a stride in the right direction. The two forwards will battle it out for a spot on the right side of Winnipeg's second line. Jets GM Kevin Cheveldayoff also likely will have Mark Scheifele for his first full NHL season and if he can make a seamless jump to the pro game after a spectacular junior career, this will be another good addition for the Jets.

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