directory Light the Lamp - a Columbus Blue Jackets blog: Derek MacKenzie signed...still no official announcement on MacDonald

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Monday, July 14, 2008

Derek MacKenzie signed...still no official announcement on MacDonald

Lindsay Kramer over on the Syracuse Crunch blog site reported that center Derek MacKenzie has been re-signed by Columbus to a 2-year 2-way deal.

If you recall MacKenzie saw 17 games with the big club last season as injuried took their toll. He notched 2 goals in that span. In 65 games with the Crunch 25g for 49 points.

Sportsnet's take on him:

Has good face-off ability and two-way skills. Is an industrious center with a history of scoring ability in the junior ranks.

Lacks ideal NHL size for the center position. Is limited in terms of offensive ability at the big-league level.

Career potential
Reserve center.

We all got a pretty good look at MacKenzie last year. Sportsnet pretty much nails his game. He brings good depth and didn't look out of place during his call ups last season and plays a solid north/south dependable game.

I like this signing for those reasons.

We know the Jackets will go through their rash of injuries and it never hurts to have some capable band aides in the minors who can fill a hole or two while the wounded heal. He also gives Syracuse some very much needed scoring in their top 6.

Now onto the other Mac. The Craig MacDonald signing has yet to become official but Kramer hints that its just a matter of time and that jumped the gun by putting his name on the Columbus roster. I would think we'd learn about the terms sometime this week.

With both "Macs" in the fold Syracuse has some veteran depth down the middle but Kramer thinks they could use one more veteran scorer - especially since Lindstrom is going back to Europe. His reasoning is that with both "Macs" in the lineup Syracuse should be okay but chances are with injuries the way they are in Columbus that won't be the norm.

This is how Syracuse is shaping up:

Goal - Mason, LaCosta
Defense - Clitsome, Wilson, Plehkanov with Methot, Sigalet and Holden likely
Forwards - MacDonald, MacKenzie, Vigilante, Legein, Pineault, Frischmon, Dorsett, Mirasty, Sestito, Starkov with possibly Filatov and Mayorov

I also wouldn't rule out a guy like Dan Smith getting re-singed to anchor that defense with a veteran guy.

For those of you like me who dig this sort of thing - according to the following new players will wear the following nubmers:

5 - Christian Backman
14 - Raffi Torres
18 - RJ Umberger
20 - Kristan Huselius
22 - Mike Commodore
51 - Fedor Tyutin

Both Jackub Voracek and Derick Brassard have been added to the roster - can you say locks? Brassard is listed at 16 while Voracek does not have a number as of yet.

It looks like Andrew Murray lost out on the 51 to Tyutin and still needs to pick a new number. Also Umberger gave up the 20 to Huselius.

So unless your a Murray or Voracek fan you can now purchase your jerseys with confidence!

It will be interesting to see if the Pascal Leclaire talks get somewhere this week. Last we heard was that Howson made a counter offer and the Leclaire camp was considering it and they'd talk early this week. I'd like to see this one get wrapped.

My guess is that the term has been settled which we've heard the 3 year mark tossed around. The question now is cash. I'm guessing Howson wants 3 years at 9 and the Leclaire camp wants 3 years at 12. We'll probably see something in that 3.75 average range and it won't suprise me if its an escalating agreement (1st - 3 mil, 2nd - 4, 3rd - 4.25).

In other news today it looks like Ted Nolan and the New York Islanders are parting ways after just two years.

I'll have to ask my resident Islanders expert on how he feels about this but from an outsider view its seems to be Wang's way or the highway. I've read some articles where Nolan was kept out of the drafting process and did not know whom they were going to draft.

Obviously things have soured in that relationship.

I don't think it will take Nolan long to find a job. Afterall he led the Islanders to a playoff birth two seasons ago with a skeleton roster.

Its always silly season in the NHL coaching ranks and all it takes is for one team to get off to a bad start before Nolan could find himself in a new gig.

Per usual just as I finish a post both on the subject the Jackets announce that both MacKenzie and MacDonald have been signed.

Update: The day could not be complete without a bit of Filatov news. Puck-rakers is reporting the following:

The NHL today rejected the contract signed by Nikita Filatov with the Blue Jackets late last week. But ...

It has nothing to do with Russian claims that Filatov is still property of his Russian club, CSKA Moscow, or that the Blue Jackets owe CSKA Moscow compensation. It has nothing to do with the Continental Hockey League.

It was rejected because of some wording in the "schedule A" bonuses section of Filatov's contract, wording the NHL found insufficient or not quite in line with the CBA. The wording was ammended, Filatov signed the ammendment and the contract was refiled with the NHL this afternoon.

The good news is that it appears to be a technicality and Howson and the brass have already resubmitted the paper work.

What I hope this is not is a stall tactic by the NHL to buy some time.

Filatov-gate goes on.



Matt said...

Unless they're officially tanking, I think it's a very scary possibility for the Jackets that Ted could end up in LA.

He could take them from "Lock for 15th in the West" to "Possible contender". We don't need any more of those! We've got enough to deal with!

Anonymous said...

Terry Murray (philly assistant) is going to be the head guy in LA.

I don't forsee Nolan back in the NHL anytime soon. 'Philosophical differences'? That is twice he was let go due to sketchy circumstances. This guy is trouble.

Guy said...

He left the Sabres after being the coach of the year, then the organization offered him a one year contract. I've never been sure of why Nolan was blacklisted from the NHL for so long until the Islanders offered him the coaching job. If Ted Nolan is trouble, what does that make Mike Keenan?

markislander said...

Well the sabers thing was that i had herd he had slept with one of the players girlfriend or wife,so i think he got bannned for a while.That was kept on the low.Now with the islanders im not sure what the hell is going on i liked him and the way he coached, he is just like Hitch they both have the same coaching strategy.Im pissed but i did look at his winning record and its not that great,but still liked him.I herd they are going to go after the best they can fine, im not sure who is still out there.Im glad this is a rebuilding year.

Anonymous said...

The 'contract dispute' is what they wanted the public to think it was. A good coach who merely had a contract dispute doesn't get kept out of the NHL for nearly 10 years and then get fired after only 2 reasonable seasons.

'Just like Hitch'--oh my.

Hitch coaches through the group of leaders, Nolan is supposedly a 'players coach' who befriends the players. That works for a short period of time only. Their philosophies are quite different.

What is Mike Keenan? He is an idiot as well and is fading fast with the flames. I wouldn't be surprised if he doesn't make it until Christmas with the flames this year.

wizworm said...

I don't know if the rumors about Nolan sleeping with someone are true or not but the other rumour that got him black-listed was that he went for a power grab at the Sabres GM job.

He apparently went behind the GM's back and had discussions with the owner trying to convince him to get rid of the GM and make him GM/Coach. Apparently that didn't go over well around the league.

markislander said...

Well in a interview i didn"t hear anything about a contract dispute,so not sure where you are getting your info.Two look at who he had to work with we had so many injuries last year calling up the youg guns just doesen"t work.look at the jackets same thing.You bring young players in to fast and they don"t develope My guess is like Wizworm said he most likely is running his mouth to much.Keenan Flames made the playoffs must have done somthing right.

Anonymous said...

wizworm is very warm regarding what led to Nolan's firing in Buffalo. He tried to turn the players against the GM and it backfired on him.

Re: Keenan and his flames--a very veteran team and some pretty good goaltending got them in...they were fading hard down the stretch and barely squeeked in the playoffs.

He has done nothing as a head guy in Calgary that another very average coach couldn't have achieved. In my estimation, that team has underachieved since Sutter left the bench and went to management. He was able to get more out of them than anyone in a long time. Keenan has done nothing impressive with that team at all.

Anonymous said...

chris nolan got fired by the Isles? Does that mean it won't take as long to make the next Batman movie?

If I were Garth Snow I would go after that Ted Nolan guy. Heard he was a fantastic coach.

LTL said...

Ha - nice catch. Apparently I've got to much Dark Knight on the mind....speaking of - I can't wait to catch that new flick.

Chris is now Ted.