NHL News & Notes: Lindell, Rangers & More

In today’s News & Notes, Esa Lindell has signed a long-term extension, Jim Schoenfeld has stepped down from the New York Rangers and Craig MacTavish is the new head coach of Lokomotiv in the KHL.

Related: NHL News & Notes: Krueger, Heponiemi & More

Lindell Signs Extension With Stars

The Dallas Stars have agreed to terms with Lindell on a six-year contract extension worth $34.8 million. The deal will carry an average cap hit of $5.8 million for the duration of the deal.

Esa Lindell
Esa Lindell #23, Dallas Stars (Amy Irvin / The Hockey Writers)

This is a significant deal for the Stars as they get the 24-year-old blueliner locked up for the long-term, solidifying their blue-line as they look to become legitimate Stanley Cup contenders. Stars’ general manager Jim Nill would say as much when speaking about this signing.

“Esa is a consummate professional who has proven himself dependable in every situation and is just an absolute workhorse,” said Nill. “When you combine his strength, conditioning, hockey IQ and skill, he has become an integral part of this team.

Along with John Klingberg and Miro Heiskanen, the three make up the foundation of a blueline that will not only be a strength for our club, but one that will be as good as any in the NHL for the foreseeable future.”

While it’s a significant contract with a big price tag and a long term, the Stars seem confident that Lindell will give them the appropriate value that they’re looking for.

In 13 games in the postseason this season, Lindell would score one goal and four points, averaging an impressive 26:58 of ice time per game. He’d average 24:20 of ice time in the regular season while scoring 11 goals and 32 points in 82 games.

Schoenfeld Steps Down From Rangers

The New York Rangers lost their senior vice president and assistant general manager Thursday when Schoenfeld stepped down from the team. Schoenfeld spent 17 seasons with the Rangers in various roles, though he spent the majority of that time as the general manager of the Hartford Wolf Pack, the Rangers’ AHL affiliate.

“In nearly two decades with the Rangers, Jim made an impact on every level of the organization,” Rangers President Glen Sather said Thursday. “His tireless efforts and contributions were vital to the extended run of success we experienced during his tenure in New York.”

The Rangers are a team in transition and this is just another domino that’s fallen for the team. Still, the team has escalated their rebuild and could be a playoff contender sooner than later given the excellent resource management that they’ve displayed over the last few seasons.

MacTavish Leaves NHL for KHL

Keeping with the theme of senior vice presidents leaving historic NHL franchises, MacTavish would do the same Thursday as he left the Edmonton Oilers and would sign with HC Lokomotiv of the KHL to become their new head coach.

MacTavish was the head coach of the Oilers from 2000 to 2009 and would leave the team after being fired. He’d rejoin the team three years later as their senior vice president, however, and was later promoted to general manager the following year. He’d be removed from the general manager role when Peter Chiarelli was hired as president of hockey operations and general manager in 2015.

This is the first of what should be many changes to the Oilers with new general manager Ken Holland taking the reigns in Edmonton.