NHL News: Sabres extend coach Don Granato, Andy Greene retires, and Anton Stralman signs with Bruins
The Buffalo Sabres signed head coach Don Granato and defenseman Mattias Samuelsson to multi-year contract extensions on Wednesday.
While the Sabres did not divulge terms of the deal for Granato, they did announce Samuelsson’s extension as a seven-year pact worth $30 million.
Granato, 55, replaced Ralph Krueger behind the Buffalo bench on March 17, 2021. He went 9-16-3 in the final 28 games of that season before the Sabres posted a 32-39-11 record in 2021-22 to finish in fifth place in the Atlantic Division.
“We need to get stronger, and we need to focus on that and grow,” Granato said. “Winning some games last year, yeah, it’s reassuring. But it’s not what we want. Our appetite is much, much bigger than that. So, it just drives our group for more.”
Sabres extend Don Granato
Sabres general manager Kevyn Adams said he’s been pleased with the direction of the club under Granato’s watch.
“Don’s passion for the game and leadership skills have been on display since the moment we met,” Adams said. “He is someone who the players have a tremendous amount of respect for, and he dedicates himself to bettering each individual on the team.
“Don’s mentality of ‘earning it’ resonates throughout the team. It is more than just a mindset. It is a driving force for our players and staff. I appreciate his thoughtfulness when it comes to developing our players and the open communication we are able to have about the team. I am happy to extend Don’s contract, keeping him in Western New York for many years to come.”
Samuelsson, 22, had 10 assists in 42 games last season.
He will play out the final season of his entry-level contract in 2022-23 before the extension kicks in.
The son of former NHLer Kjell Samuelsson has 12 assists in 54 career games since being selected by Buffalo in the second round of the 2018 NHL Draft.
Andy Greene retires
Defenseman Andy Greene, a veteran of 16 NHL seasons, signed a one-day contract with the New Jersey Devils on Wednesday and retired.
Greene spent the first 13-plus seasons of his career in New Jersey, where he signed as an undrafted free agent in 2006. He played for the New York Islanders in parts of the past three seasons.
Devils fans will have a chance to give Greene, who turns 40 later this month, one last hurrah on Saturday. He and his family will take part in the ceremonial puck drop before the home opener against the Detroit Red Wings.
“I want to thank the New Jersey Devils organization, for giving me my first day and last day in the NHL,” Greene said, per NHL.com. “You have treated not only me, but more importantly my family, with nothing but love and respect and I will be forever grateful for that. Thank you also to the New York Islanders organization for the past two and a half years.”
Greene retires with 264 points (52 goals, 212 assists) in 1,057 career games.
He played in the 2012 Stanley Cup final with the Devils and was named team captain prior to the 2015-16 season. He was traded to the Islanders on Feb. 16, 2020.
“Andy was a bedrock for New Jersey during his 14 years and developed into an exceptional leader and what it meant to be a Devil,” general manager Tom Fitzgerald said. “He was a consummate professional when times were hard and a representation to his teammates in the locker room. It’s only right that he announces his retirement from the National Hockey League as a member of the Devils and we thank him for all that he’s done on and off the ice for the organization.”
Greene, a native of Michigan, will remain living in New Jersey and will work with the franchise on an occasional basis.
Bruins sign Anton Stralman
The Boston Bruins signed defenseman Anton Stralman to a one-year, $1 million contract on Wednesday.
Stralman, 36, won’t be eligible to play with the team until he gets a new work visa. Coach Jim Montgomery said the team was working on the situation.
The Swede is entering his 16th NHL season and has 63 goals and 230 assists in 930 games with six clubs. He had eight goals and 15 assists in 74 games last season for the Arizona Coyotes.
Stralman impressed the Bruins during a tryout.
“I know I’m at the tail end of my career, and as year and year go by you’re looking for an opportunity to go deep and have a chance to win,” Stralman told reporters. “I’m happy with my camp, and I truly appreciate that they liked what they saw.”
Boston captain Patrice Bergeron is glad to have Stralman as a teammate.
“He’s a steady defenseman who plays the right way and always seems to be in the right spot,” Bergeron said. “Tough to play against. Experience. He’s been around a while. We’re happy to have him.”
Stralman has previously played for the Toronto Maple Leafs, Columbus Blue Jackets, New York Rangers, Tampa Bay Lightning, Florida Panthers and Coyotes.
The Bruins open their season Wednesday night against the host Washington Capitals.
Carl Hagelin out indefinitely
Washington Capitals forward Carl Hagelin is out indefinitely after undergoing arthroscopic surgery to address a chronic hip injury.
The team announced that Hagelin had the procedure Monday. He was placed on the injured non-roster list. He’s heading into the final year of his contract.
Hagelin’s 2021-22 season was cut short when he took a stick to his left eye during practice in early March, leading to multiple surgeries to repair his vision.
Hagelin, 34, returned to participate in optional skates ahead of Washington’s training camp but never practiced due to the hip injury.
Hagelin finished last season with 14 points (three goals, 11 assists) in 53 games.
He has 296 points (110 goals, 186 assists) in 713 career games with five teams: the New York Rangers (2011-15), Anaheim Ducks (2015-16), Pittsburgh Penguins (2016-18), Los Angeles Kings (2018-19) and Caps, who traded for him in February 2019.
–Field Level Media
–Field Level Media