>>Rangers Expecting Injured Zuccarello To Be At Camp
The New York Rangers should have one of their top offensive players, forward Mats Zuccarello, back for the start of training camp after he suffered a serious head injury during last year's playoffs.
Rangers coach Alain Vigneault told NHL.com's Dan Rosen on Friday that based on everything he has heard from their medical staff Zuccarello should be 100 percent ready to go and that he has been cleared for contact and has fully healed. He suffered a brain contusion and a small fracture in his skull when he was hit in the side of the head by a Ryan McDonagh slap shot in Game 5 of their first round series win against the Pittsburgh Penguins. He revealed this summer that after the injury he was temporarily unable to speak for several days and that he had also lost some of the feeling in his arm.
Zuccarello, who turns 28 on September 1, has spent parts of five seasons with the Rangers after they signed him as a free agent. Before his time with the Rangers he played professionally in Sweden and Norway.
Over the past two years his career has really taken off for the Rangers and has become one of their most productive players. His 108 points in 155 games since the start of the 2013-14 season are more than every other player on the team except for Derek Stepan's 112.
His absence in the playoffs was a significant loss for a Rangers team that at times struggled to score in the second and third rounds.
He signed a four-year, $18 million contract extension with the team in March just before the NHL trade deadline when rumors started to surface that he could have been dealt if the two sides couldn't agree on a new deal.
>>Kings Sign F Ehrhoff
The Los Angeles Kings managed to make the rare August splash in NHL free agency by landing veteran defenseman Christian Ehrhoff with a one-year deal, according to Bob McKenzie of TSN. Rich Hammond of The Orange County Register reports that Ehrhoff's contract is worth $1.5 million.
Ehrhoff spent last season with the Pittsburgh Penguins on a one-year deal after the Buffalo Sabres used a compliance buyout on him after Ehrhoff expressed a desire to leave the previous offseason. The 2014-15 campaign was a rough one for Ehrhoff, however, as injuries forced him to miss a good chunk of the season. The 33-year-old managed to put up 14 points in 49 games with the Pens, but missed the end of the regular season and playoffs due to concussion symptoms.
A veteran of 741 NHL games, Ehrhoff showed last season that he can still play a pretty strong game when healthy. In those 741 career games, Ehrhoff has posted 327 points. Ehrhoff hit 50 points in a season once in his career, and is a two-time 40-plus point scorer in the NHL.
He is taking a significant pay cut from the $4 million he made last season in Pittsburgh, which was his same annual average on his previous deal with the Sabres. Other teams known to be interested in Ehrhoff's services included the Columbus Blue Jackets, who apparently were unable to meet the defenseman's contract demands as the club is experiencing a bit of a salary cap crunch after a busy summer of their own.
>>Minnesota Coach Sydor Arrested on Drunk Driving, Child Endangerment
Darryl Sydor, who played 18 years in the NHL and currently serves as an assistant coach for the Minnesota Wild, was arrested on suspicion of driving drunk with his 12-year-old son in the car Thursday according to multiple reports.
Sydor was stopped while on the way to his son's hockey game according to the report.
More from KSTP TV in Minnesota:
Sydor's blood alcohol level was 0.30, [Fridley (Minn.) Police Lt. Mike] Monsrud said; he is expected to appear in court Friday on drunk driving and child endangerment charges.
Monsrud said Sydor failed a field sobriety test and displayed slow and slurred speech. Police gave the boy a ride to the hockey game.
A two-time Stanley Cup champion as a player with the Dallas Stars and Tampa Bay Lightning, Sydor has been an assistant coach with the Wild for the last four seasons.
According to KSTP, Sydor remains in a local jail awaiting his court appearance, set for Friday afternoon.