Monday, June 6, 2011

Bears/Caps making roster moves...Sens one win from Calder Cup

Wow, it's been a while since I posted.  Or at least it feels like it has been a while.  Lots of roster news today.

Let's start with the biggest news as far as Hershey fans are concerned...

Boyd Kane will be a member of the 2011-12 Hershey Bears.  He signed an AHL only, one-year contract. 

Kane has been an important part of the Bears team the past 2 seasons in many different aspects.  Offensively he has scored 48 goals over the last 2 years (24 each year) and added 45 assists (25 in 10-11) during those seasons.  Defensively he is arguably one of the best penalty killers in the AHL.  And in the locker room I doubt there is a better leader for a young team.

That doesn't mean Kane doesn't have his faults.  He is a hothead that takes untimely penalties, he is about as far from fast as a hockey player can get, and he isn't a spring chicken.  He is 33 years old and counts as an AHL veteran.

This signing does a couple things for the Bears.  One, I think you have your 2011-12 captain.  Two, this gives them 3 of the 5 (6 depending on game limits) veterans that they can dress each night. 

I am not Kane's biggest fan on here but if he returns to the team as a 3rd line left wing then I am happy with this signing.

Welcome back Boyd!

Some other roster moves....

The Caps signed Swede Mattias Sjogren.  Sjogren is 23 (will be 24 in November) and has spent his entire career playing in Sweden.  Most recently for Farjestads where he scored 7 goals and added 17 assists in 51 games. 

He is a natural center and from what I have read is more defensive than offensive.  He is expected to compete for the 3rd/4th line center spots in Washington.  His contract is a 2-year deal and IS (according to a two-way contract. 

This is important because the European game is a different style than the North American version.  Meaning he could probably use some seasoning before jumping to the NHL. 

I was wondering if he would be willing to play in the AHL and while that isn't confirmed by the 2-way nature of the contract it is more likely.  He was likely making much more money in Sweden then he will make in the AHL so only time will tell if he would accept a position in Hershey.

Either way I think this is good for Hershey.  If Sjogren does make the Caps it could be at Jay Beagle's expense which would return the fan favorite to Hershey for another season.

Stay tuned...

Wait...more roster moves...

The Caps and Predators pulled off a conditional trade this past week.  LW Taylor Stefishen was acquired by the Caps for a (possible) 7th round pick in 2013. 

This is a complicated trade and I will be brief here but if you want more check out Mike Vogel's insight over at Dump n Chase.

Basically the Caps don't have to give up the pick unless they sign him to an NHL deal.  He was drafted in 2008 and is 21 (in August) so he is ineligible for juniors in Canada again this season.  The Caps can sign him to an AHL deal and give him a "test run" so to speak for a season before signing him to an NHL deal and giving up the pick. 

At least that's the way I understood Vogel's article.

He was a 5th round pick that has produced solid numbers in his short time in juniors and college hockey.  Most recently he played in the WHL and recorded 24 goals and 43 assists in 68 games. 

My guess is...he will spend most of the season in South Carolina with a few Hershey call ups throughout the year.  He will likely be given a chance to win a job during camp with the Bears but he seems more destined for the ECHL for a year.

Okay...that's it for roster moves for today.  Expect more news as we get closer to July 1 though.  The entry draft is the last weekend of the month and free agency begins in July.  Lots will happen over the next few weeks.  Most of it will affect Washington immediately, but anything that affects the Caps will have an effect on the Bears.


As of today (Monday, June 6) the Calder Cup appears to be remaining in the East Division.  After dropping game 1 in Houston the Binghamton Senators have won 3 of 4 to take a 3 games to 2 lead in the Calder Cup Finals.

The series shifts back to Houston for games 6 and 7 this Tuesday and Thursday. 

It has been a close series to date with offense very limited.  Overall the Senators have scored 11 goals in 5 games while the Aeros have scored 8. 

Too bad this hasn't been on TV in our area.  Would loved to have seen some of it.

Go Sens!

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