News Updates: August 6

Sorry these took so long to display, but here is the news from around the NHL that I found pertinent:

Of the most interest to Pens’ fans, The Hockey News has put both Sidney Crosby and Evgeni Malkin in their prediction of the top 10 points leaders for next season.  Crosby was picked to win the scoring title with 113 points.  Malkin was picked to finish Seventh.

In transactions, the Washington Capitals signed a center that makes my prediction for Washington to win the Southeast Division look a bit stronger.

Center David Steckel is now a Capital, and is coming off a season that he played 67 games in, scoring 12 points (5 G – 7 A).  He will be a nice filler at the center position.  He probably won’t see much time though, unless Nicklas Backstrom, Sergei Fedorov, Brooks Laich or Michael Nylander fall to injury.

The next two updates are good for some interesting quotes.  First, the Los Angeles Kings’ GM Dean Lombardi on handling the signing of Anze Kopitar:

“We’re not only going to match any offer sheet, we’ll have enough space to go after your guys. Go ahead and make our day. If you sign our guy, we’re coming back with both barrels firing. You’d better be damn straight that you have the cap space and all your guys are signed.”

You’ve got to love that kind of intensity and protection for his own players.

Also, Ray Emery talks about his problems in Ottawa and what caused them (ESPN.com).  I wasn’t aware of it, but he apparently got mixed up with the wrong crowd and was having drug problems.

As for the drug use, Emery did not confront the issue head-on, but when asked to describe his use of recreational drugs, he said: “I really don’t want to go into details. I’m not a saint and I’m not in jail, either. I think I’ve learned a lot of lessons. I didn’t feel comfortable. I got myself into some bad ways. It took some time to clear my head.”

He continues:

“The kind of people that are kind of patting you on the back when you don’t deserve to be patted on the back,” he said. “I don’t think [my behavior] was at the level that it was made out to be.

“I don’t think that I was any different than a majority of other guys that have played or are playing who are my age as far as that goes. But I really put myself out there. I made it so all eyes were on me.”

Apparently he is more upbeat now, and is looking at his move to the KHL in Russia as an opportunity to earn his way back to the NHL.  Emery is signed to a one-year deal, allowing him to return in 2009-2010.

Also, something very miniscule and probably of no interest to Penguins fans, or the majority of NHL fans to be quite honest.  However, The Montreal Canadiens signed a minor league defenseman (Sportsnet.ca).

Get off my back.  It’s summer.

Lets Go Pens.

~Chris @ Pittsburgh Puck Talk

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