In today’s News & Notes, the Ottawa Senators and Edmonton Oilers have made a Thanksgiving Day trade, Sidney Crosby shined in his return from injury and the Montreal Canadiens have made a call-up from the AHL.
Wideman Traded to Oilers
On a day that sees the entirety of the United State celebrating and eating with their family and friends, two Canadian hockey teams got down to business and made a trade. The Senators announced Thursday that they had sent defender Chris Wideman to the Oilers in exchange for a sixth-round pick in 2020. The pick involved in this deal was originally owned by the St. Louis Blues and was sent to the Oilers for Jakub Jerabek on Oct. 1.
The 28-year-old Wideman has scored two goals and five points in 19 games this season. In his career, the 100th overall selection from 2009 has scored 16 goals and 43 points in 175 games. He would only play in 16 games with the Senators last season, though he did score an impressive three goals and eight points in those contests.
At the time of this deal, the Senators sit in seventh place in the Atlantic Division, two points out of last place ahead of only the Florida Panthers.
While things were expected to go poorly for the Senators this season, they went from bad to worse when the Senators were unfortunately involved in a situation involving multiple Senators’ players, Wideman included, publicly discussing their woes about the Senators, the coaching staff and more. Though Wideman and his teammates would apologize, it was still a bad look for a franchise that simply needs a break at some point.
For the Oilers, things have been just as bad if not worse on the ice. The team has already made a trade involving a swap of young players when they sent Ryan Strome to the New York Rangers for Ryan Spooner. The team also made a move involving their coaching staff as they fired Todd McLellan and hired Ken Hitchcock. Still, the Oilers have 21 points and though they’re in fifth place in the Pacific Division, they’re only one point ahead of the seventh-place Arizona Coyotes for second-to-last place in the Division.
Crosby Shines in Return From Injury
Just one game back from injury and Crosby has proven that he is still one of the best players on the planet. After suffering an upper-body injury on Nov. 13 in a losing effort to the New Jersey Devils, Crosby returned to action Wednesday night against the Dallas Stars with one goal and three points on three shots in 16:54 of ice time.
In just the first few minutes of the contest, Crosby had already shown his importance to the Penguins’ lineup when he assisted on Jake Guentzel’s goal less than four minutes into the game. His goal would come just six minutes later when he knocked a rebound home past Stars’ netminder Anton Khudobin, giving the Penguins a 3-0 lead at the time. Crosby would then assist on a goal just 3:20 into the second period to put a capper on his impressive return.
Crosby is now up to nine goals and 22 points in 17 games this season.
Canadiens Recall Kulak
The Canadiens have recalled Brett Kulak from the AHL. The 24-year-old defender was acquired by the Canadiens from Calgary prior to the season in a trade that saw Rinat Valiev and Matt Taormina returned to the Flames.
Kulak has scored three goals and 11 points in 19 games with the Laval Rocket this season.
A veteran of 101 NHL games, Kulak has scored only two goals and 11 points thus far, though he’s also only played in one full season in his career. So far this season, the Canadiens haven’t felt the need to use Kulak at the NHL level but his solid start to the season in the AHL has apparently perked their interest.
Through 22 games, the Canadiens have an 11-7-4 record and sit tied with the Boston Bruins for fourth in the Atlantic Division, though they’ve played one game more than their long-time rivals. This season has gone far better than expected for the Habs after the team traded away key pieces of their roster this offseason in Alex Galchenyuk (traded to Arizona) and Max Pacioretty (traded to Vegas).