2009-10 NHL season: Wikis

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2009–10 NHL season
League National Hockey League
Sport Ice hockey
Duration October 1, 2009 – April 12, 2010
Regular season
Playoffs
Stanley Cup
NHL seasons

← 2008–09

2010–11 →

The 2009–10 NHL season is the 92nd (and current) season of the National Hockey League (NHL) and the 100th season since the founding of the predecessor National Hockey Association (NHA). It will run from October 1, 2009—including four games in Europe on October 2 and 3—until April 12, 2010, with the Stanley Cup playoffs to follow, all the way up to early June 2010. A mid-season break from February 15 to February 28 occured to allow participation of NHL players in the 2010 Winter Olympics in Vancouver. Because of the Winter Olympics break there was no NHL All-Star Game for 2010.

League business

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Salary cap

The salary cap will see just a minor increase for 2009–10 season. It is set at $56.8 million, which is $100,000 higher than in the 2008–09 season. The salary floor is at $40.8 million.[1]

Entry Draft

The Entry Draft was held June 26–27, 2009 at the Bell Centre in Montreal, Quebec. The New York Islanders chose John Tavares with the first overall pick.

New uniforms

Several teams (Calgary, Minnesota, Nashville, Florida, and Colorado) will debut new third uniforms this season, while Philadelphia & Edmonton Oilers will be making their third uniform their primary home jersey, and Chicago will make the jersey they wore for last season's Winter Classic their new alternate. The New Jersey Devils announced plans to play one game (March 17 against the Pittsburgh Penguins, the one year anniversary of Martin Brodeur's record breaking 552nd win) wearing their 1982-1992 uniforms, albeit transferred onto the league's current RBK Edge jersey template. In addition, NHL officials will have new uniforms, which debuted at the 2009 All-Star Game.

Television dispute

Prior to the season, a contract dispute between Versus (the NHL cable carrier for the United States) and satellite television supplier DirecTV blacked out[citation needed] Versus for satellite subscribers. Versus was restored to DirecTV in March 2010. While negotiations were secret, it was reported by the media that the dispute was over the 'slotting' of Versus with other channels. Versus was restored to DirecTV in the same tier of channels as the previous season, suggesting that Versus was unsuccessful in getting DirecTV to change its programming.

Preseason

The 2009–10 preseason for most teams started on September 14, 2009.

2009 Kraft Hockeyville

Since 2006, Kraft Foods has sponsored a sweepstakes called Kraft Hockeyville, in which various small cities across Canada compete against each other with the hopes of winning the privilege of having an NHL pre-season game played in a local sports complex or arena, along with a hockey festival named the Stanley Cup Jamboree. The 2009 winner was the city of Terrace, British Columbia. The pre-season matchup was between the home town favorite Vancouver Canucks and the New York Islanders.

Victoria Cup

The Victoria Cup, which was held in Zurich, Switzerland on September 29, 2009, just prior to the regular-season games, was contested between ZSC Zurich Lions and the NHL's Chicago Blackhawks. The game was won by Zurich 2-1.

Regular season

Four teams (Blackhawks, Blues, Panthers and Red Wings) began their season in the NHL Premiere series, each playing two regular-season games in Europe. The Red Wings played the Blues in Stockholm, Sweden at Ericsson Globe while the Blackhawks and Panthers played in Helsinki, Finland at Hartwall Areena on October 2 and October 3.[2] This is the second-straight season that Sweden has hosted an NHL regular season game, and the third season of the Premiere series, in which NHL regular season games are held in Europe. Unlike in previous years, the European games are not the inaugural games, as the regular season began October 1 in North America.

The Phoenix bankruptcy court rejected offers from the NHL and Jim Balsillie, ending Balsillie's and Jerry Moyes plan to move the Coyotes to Hamilton, Ontario. The NHL's offer was rejected because it left out creditors Moyes and Wayne Gretzky. On Balsillie's offer, Judge Redfield T. Baum refused to sanction the use of bankruptcy to force relocation of a franchise on a league. Gretzky, who had stayed away from training camp and was replaced. The Coyotes played their first home game to a sell-out, however attendance was lower at other games in the month of October. Later in the month, the NHL and Moyes came to a tentative agreement to transfer ownership of the Coyotes to the NHL.

The Avalanche, picked by many in the media to finish last in the Western Conference, instead roared to a 10–3-2 mark for the month of October to lead the Western Conference, partly on the strong play of Craig Anderson in net and rookies Ryan O'Reilly and Matt Duchene. The Coyotes, not expected to make the playoffs started strongly. The team had signed some veterans and demoted some young players to the minors. The Coyotes surprised the Stanley Cup champion Penguins 3–0 in Pittsburgh.

In the Eastern Conference, the Penguins had the best record after the first month. Teams playing at a higher level than predicted included the Sabres, which led the Northeast Division through most of October. On the other end of the scale, 2009 Conference finalist Hurricanes had a 2–8–3 record for October, the worst in franchise history.

In early November, the Columbus Chamber of Commerce released a report detailing how the Blue Jackets were losing $12 million per year. According to the Columbus Dispatch, the team's ownership is not prepared to continue funding the 'structural problem'. The Blue Jackets spend $5 million annually in arena rent, and are losing money on events at the Nationwide Arena to the amount of $4 million per year. The Arena district is estimated to provide $30 million in taxes. The report by Stephen A. Buser, suggests some options including the use of local and state taxes.[3]

Two streaks came to an end in November. The Devils won nine games in a row on the road to start the season, one short of the league record set in the 2006–07 season by the Sabres, before losing in Philadelphia to the Flyers. The Hurricanes lost a franchise-high 14 games in a row before defeating the Wild in a shootout on November 15. The streak included overtime and shootout losses.

The 2009 flu pandemic hit the Oilers hard with several players out for stretches in October. The Flames received their flu shots ahead of the general public; causing an Alberta health official to be fired. The Maple Leafs and the Canucks teams both had members of their staff "jump the queue" and receive flu shots ahead of the general public and were criticized in the media.

In December, the NHL announced that Ice Edge Holdings, a partnership of Canadians and Phoenix-area businessmen, had signed a letter of intent with the NHL to purchase the Coyotes. Ice Edge, which plans to keep the team in Phoenix, plans to play five Coyotes home games in Saskatoon each season as part of a five-year plan to return the Coyotes to profitability. Ice Edge would still have to negotiate a lease agreement with the City of Glendale, and get its ownership approved by the NHL Board of Governors.[4]

In December, Shane Doan of the Coyotes played his 1,000th game in a 2-1 shootout win over the Blue Jackets. On December 21, New Jersey Devils goaltender Martin Brodeur recorded his 104th shutout, breaking a record set by Terry Sawchuk during the 1969–70 NHL season.[5]

Two head coaches lost their positions in mid-season. On January 2, 2010, the Blues fired coach Andy Murray. In 2008–09, the Blues had made the playoffs but were struggling this season. Davis Payne was named interim head coach.[6] One month later, on February 3, 2010, the Blue Jackets, unhappy with their slide in the standings after a good start, fired defensive-minded coach Ken Hitchcock. Although the slide had started months previous, team management had given time to Hitchcock to resolve the situation before firing him.[7]

Player trades started in earnest a month before the March 3, 2010 trade deadline. On January 31, the Maple Leafs made two large trades, getting Dion Phaneuf from the Flames in a seven-player trade, and J. S. Giguere from the Ducks for two players. The Flames were not done, trading Olli Jokinen to the Rangers the next day. After he turned down a $101 million contract offer from the Thrashers, top scorer and pending free agent Ilya Kovalchuk was traded to the Devils on February 4.[8]

On February 5, Boston investment banker Jeff Vinik agreed to buy the Lightning from owners OK Hockey, headed by Oren Koules and Len Barrie. The sale price was not disclosed, although the media speculated it was much less than the $206 million US that OK paid. The purchase is contingent on the approval of the NHL Board of Governors.[9]

On February 8, Canadiens' general manager (GM) Bob Gainey announced his retirement as GM from the club, staying on as advisor to the club. Assistant GM Pierre Gauthier becomes the interim GM. Gauthier and coach Jacques Martin held the same positions with the Senators in the late 1990s.[10]

The March 3 trade deadline produced 31 trades involving 55 players, the largest number ever.[citation needed] The most active team was the Coyotes, who were involved in seven deals. Unlike previous seasons, the Coyotes were in a playoff position at the trade deadline and were buyers of players rather than sellers. Only the Dallas Stars and Philadelphia Flyers did not make any trades between March 1 (after the Olympic roster freeze was lifted) and the trade deadline on March 3 at 3:00 P.M. EST.

On March 6, the NHL launched a lawsuit for $61 million against former Coyotes owner Jerry Moyes to recover $10 million in bankruptcy court costs, $20 million in losses for 2009-10 and $11.6 million owed to creditors.[11]

Conference standings

Eastern Conference GP W L OTL GF GA PTS
yWashington Capitals * 70 47 14 9 277 198 103
New Jersey Devils * 69 42 24 3 188 166 87
Buffalo Sabres * 68 36 22 10 186 174 82
Pittsburgh Penguins 70 41 24 5 219 202 87
Ottawa Senators 70 37 28 5 187 201 79
Montreal Canadiens 71 36 29 6 194 195 78
Philadelphia Flyers 69 36 28 5 206 189 77
Boston Bruins 69 31 26 12 174 177 74
New York Rangers 70 31 30 9 182 191 71
Atlanta Thrashers 69 29 29 11 204 224 69
Tampa Bay Lightning 69 28 29 12 183 211 68
New York Islanders 70 29 32 9 185 216 67
Florida Panthers 68 28 30 10 177 200 66
Carolina Hurricanes 69 28 33 8 191 216 64
Toronto Maple Leafs 70 24 34 12 187 235 60

x - clinched playoff spot, y - clinched division title, z - clinched best conference record, e - eliminated from playoff contention

* – division leader

After games of March 17, 2010.[12]

Western Conference GP W L OTL GF GA PTS
San Jose Sharks * 66 43 14 9 220 165 95
Chicago Blackhawks * 66 44 17 5 220 163 93
Vancouver Canucks * 67 41 23 3 220 174 85
Phoenix Coyotes 67 40 22 5 180 167 85
Los Angeles Kings 67 40 22 5 204 179 85
Colorado Avalanche 67 38 23 6 199 176 82
Nashville Predators 68 37 26 5 190 196 79
Detroit Red Wings 68 33 23 12 185 185 78
Calgary Flames 67 34 24 9 172 167 77
St. Louis Blues 66 31 26 9 179 183 71
Dallas Stars 67 29 25 13 188 213 71
Minnesota Wild 67 32 29 6 184 195 70
Anaheim Ducks 67 30 29 8 185 207 68
Columbus Blue Jackets 68 27 30 11 177 218 65
e-Edmonton Oilers 68 21 40 7 172 236 49

x - clinched playoff spot, y - clinched division title, p - clinched Presidents' Trophy and best record in conference, e - eliminated from playoff contention

* – division leader

After games of March 12, 2010.[12]

Divisional standings

Eastern Conference
Atlantic Division GP W L OTL GF GA PTS
1 Pittsburgh Penguins 66 40 22 4 211 189 84
2 New Jersey Devils 65 39 23 3 175 157 81
3 Philadelphia Flyers 65 35 26 4 198 175 74
4 New York Rangers 67 29 29 9 173 185 67
5 New York Islanders 66 26 32 8 171 209 60

After games of March 10, 2010.[13]

Northeast Division GP W L OTL GF GA PTS
1 Buffalo Sabres 67 36 21 10 183 170 82
2 Ottawa Senators 69 37 27 5 186 197 79
3 Montreal Canadiens 70 35 29 6 191 194 76
4 Boston Bruins 68 30 26 12 169 175 72
5 Toronto Maple Leafs 69 23 34 12 183 234 58

After games of March 15, 2010.[13]

Southeast Division GP W L OTL GF GA PTS
1 yWashington Capitals 70 47 14 9 277 198 103
2 Atlanta Thrashers 69 29 29 11 204 224 69
3 Tampa Bay Lightning 69 28 29 12 183 211 68
4 Florida Panthers 68 28 30 10 177 200 66
5 Carolina Hurricanes 69 28 33 8 191 216 64

After games of March 17, 2010.[13]
Note: GP = Games played; W = Wins; L = Losses; T = Ties; OTL = Overtime loss; GF = Goals for; GA = Goals against; Pts = Points

Western Conference
Central Division GP W L OTL GF GA PTS
1 Chicago Blackhawks 64 43 16 5 213 156 91
2 Nashville Predators 64 35 24 5 180 183 75
3 Detroit Red Wings 64 30 22 12 170 174 72
4 St. Louis Blues 65 30 26 9 177 182 69
5 Columbus Blue Jackets 65 25 29 11 170 209 61

After games of March 6, 2010.[13]

Northwest Division GP W L OTL GF GA PTS
1 Vancouver Canucks 69 43 23 3 228 176 89
2 Colorado Avalanche 68 39 23 6 204 179 84
3 Calgary Flames 68 34 25 9 173 170 77
4 Minnesota Wild 68 33 29 6 188 197 72
5 Edmonton Oilers 68 21 40 7 171 236 49

After games of March 14, 2010.[13]

Pacific Division GP W L OTL GF GA PTS
1 San Jose Sharks 66 43 14 9 220 165 95
2 Phoenix Coyotes 67 40 22 5 180 167 85
3 Los Angeles Kings 67 40 22 5 204 179 85
4 Dallas Stars 67 29 25 13 188 213 71
5 Anaheim Ducks 67 30 29 8 185 207 68

After games of March 12, 2010.[13]
Note: GP = Games played; W = Wins; L = Losses; T = Ties; OTL = Overtime loss; GF = Goals for; GA = Goals against; Pts = Points

Tiebreaking procedures

In the event of a tie in points in the standings at the end of the season, ties are broken using the following tiebreaking procedures.[14] The higher ranked team is the one with:

  1. The greater number of games won.
  2. The greater number of points earned in games between the tied clubs.
  3. The greater differential between goals for and against for the entire regular season.

Statistical leaders

Scoring leaders

GP = Games played; G = Goals; A = Assists; Pts = Points; +/– = Plus/Minus; PIM = Penalty Minutes

Player Team GP G A Pts +/– PIM
Ovechkin, AlexanderAlexander Ovechkin Washington Capitals 60 44 52 96 +43 66
Sedin, HenrikHenrik Sedin Vancouver Canucks 69 28 66 94 +35 38
Crosby, SidneySidney Crosby Pittsburgh Penguins 67 45 41 86 +11 59
St. Louis, MartinMartin St. Louis Tampa Bay Lightning 67 24 57 81 +3 12
Stamkos, StevenSteven Stamkos Tampa Bay Lightning 67 42 38 80 +6 32
Backstrom, NicklasNicklas Backstrom Washington Capitals 68 26 54 80 +31 46
Thornton, JoeJoe Thornton San Jose Sharks 66 17 62 79 +17 42
Kane, PatrickPatrick Kane Chicago Blackhawks 66 26 49 75 +19 18
Gaborik, MarianMarian Gaborik New York Rangers 62 36 37 73 +9 35
Heatley, DanyDany Heatley San Jose Sharks 66 36 36 72 +16 44

As of games played on March 6, 2010.[15]

Leading goaltenders

GP = Games Played; TOI = Time On Ice (minutes); W = Wins; L = Losses; OT = Overtime/Shootout Losses; GA = Goals Against; SO = Shutouts; Sv% = Save Percentage; GAA = Goals Against Average

Player Team GP TOI W L OT GA SO Sv% GAA
Miller, RyanRyan Miller Buffalo Sabres 55 3,261:56 32 15 7 116 5 .932 2.13
Rask, TuukaTuuka Rask Boston Bruins 30 1,706:24 14 8 4 61 3 .926 2.14
Kiprusoff, MiikkaMiikka Kiprusoff Calgary Flames 57 3,371:02 28 20 9 125 3 .922 2.22
Nabokov, EvgeniEvgeni Nabokov San Jose Sharks 56 3,342:48 36 10 9 126 2 .927 2.26
Bryzgalov, IlyaIlya Bryzgalov Phoenix Coyotes 57 3,337:45 34 18 4 128 7 .920 2.30
Vokoun, TomasTomas Vokoun Florida Panthers 54 3,214:11 22 21 10 126 7 .930 2.35
Brodeur, MartinMartin Brodeur New Jersey Devils 61 3,546:54 35 22 3 140 7 .913 2.37
Howard, JimmyJimmy Howard Detroit Red Wings 48 2,819:11 24 15 8 112 1 .923 2.38
Luongo, RobertoRoberto Luongo Vancouver Canucks 56 3,189:35 34 18 2 131 4 .916 2.46
Quick, JonathanJonathan Quick Los Angeles Kings 59 3,540:50 37 19 3 146 3 .909 2.47

As of games played on March 9, 2010.[16]

Special events

The Avalanche retired 19, the number of Joe Sakic, at their home opener on October 1. The Canadiens celebrated their centennial on December 4 and retired the number 3 for Emile Bouchard and number 16 for Elmer Lach (which was already previously retired for Henri Richard).

Winter Classic

On July 15, 2009, the NHL announced that the third installment of the Winter Classic would take place on January 1, 2010, at Fenway Park in Boston, Massachusetts with the Bruins hosting the Flyers. Because the NHL will not host an All-Star Game in the 2009–10 season due to the 2010 Olympics, this became the league's showcase event. The Bruins won the game 2–1 in overtime. Marco Sturm scored the game-winning overtime goal, after the Bruins were initially down 1-0 in regulation. After the game, the roster of the United States men's hockey team for the 2010 Winter Olympics was released, which included Bruins' goaltender Tim Thomas.

Olympics

The NHL did not hold an All-Star Game this season. Instead, many of the league's players participated in the 2010 Winter Olympics in Vancouver, Canada. The Olympic men's ice hockey tournament ran from February 16 to February 28, 2010. It was the first time since the NHL allowed its players to compete in the Olympics that the Winter Olympics were held in an NHL market, as well as the first to use an NHL-sized ice rink (as opposed to the bigger one normally used for international play). General Motors Place, the Canucks' home arena, was the primary ice hockey venue for the Olympics, and was formally called "Canada Hockey Place". The temporary name change reflects the International Olympic Committee policy against selling or promoting naming rights for its competition venues. Another example of this policy is that the ice surface and dasher boards had their advertisements removed.[17] The Canadian team won gold, the American team won silver, and the Finnish team won bronze.

In order to prepare General Motors Place for the Olympics, the Canucks were required to face the longest road trip in NHL history, playing 14 straight road games from January 27 to March 13, 2010[18][17]

First games

The following is a list of players of note that played their first NHL game in 2009–10, listed with their first team:

See also

References

  1. ^ "2009-10 salary cap set at $56.8 million". NHL.com. June 26, 2009. http://www.nhl.com/ice/news.htm?id=431786. Retrieved 2009-06-28. 
  2. ^ "4 NHL teams to start '09-10 season in Europe". CBC. February 19, 2009. http://www.cbc.ca/sports/hockey/story/2009/02/19/hockey-nhl-europe.html. Retrieved 2009-02-19. 
  3. ^ Bush, Bill and Carmen, Barbara (November 5, 2009). "Saving the Jackets". Columbus Dispatch. 
  4. ^ "Ice Edge laughing all the way to the bank?". The Globe and Mail. December 18, 2009. http://www.theglobeandmail.com/sports/ice-edge-laughing-all-the-way-to-the-bank/article1403303/. 
  5. ^ Kreiser, John (22 December 2009). "Martin Brodeur and Terry Sawchuk by the numbers". NHL.com. http://www.nhl.com/ice/news.htm?id=509494. Retrieved 22 December 2009. 
  6. ^ "Payne Named Interim Head Coach". St. Louis Blues. January 2, 2010. http://blues.nhl.com/club/news.htm?id=512037. 
  7. ^ "Blue Jackets give Hitchcock boot". Toronto Sun. February 4, 2010. http://www.torontosun.com/sports/hockey/2010/02/04/12733886-sun.html. Retrieved 2010-02-04. 
  8. ^ "Kovalchuk a Devil". Sportsnet.ca. February 4, 2010. 
  9. ^ Associated Press (February 5, 2010). "Vinik agrees to buy Lightning". Sportsnet.ca. 
  10. ^ "Habs' Gainey to step down". Sportsnet.ca. February 8, 2010. http://www.sportsnet.ca/hockey/2010/02/08/habs_management/. Retrieved 2010-02-08. 
  11. ^ McGran, Kevin (March 9, 2010). "NHL sues ex-Coyotes owner for $61M". Toronto Star. http://www.thestar.com/sports/hockey/article/777181. 
  12. ^ a b "2009–2010 Standings by Conference". National Hockey League. http://www.nhl.com/ice/standings.htm?season=20092010&type=CON. 
  13. ^ a b c d e f "2009–2010 Standings by Division". National Hockey League. http://www.nhl.com/ice/standings.htm?season=20092010&type=DIV. 
  14. ^ "Title Unknown". Archived from the original on 2009-06-06. http://www.webcitation.org/5hLL2koVw. Retrieved 2009-03-21. 
  15. ^ "Player Stats: 2009–2010 Regular season: All Skaters – Total Points". National Hockey League. http://www.nhl.com/ice/playerstats.htm. Retrieved 29 December 2009. 
  16. ^ "Player Stats: 2009–2010 Regular season: Goalie – Goals Against Average". National Hockey League. http://www.nhl.com/ice/playerstats.htm?fetchKey=20102ALLGAGAll&sort=goalsAgainstAverage&viewName=wlt. Retrieved 29 December 2009. 
  17. ^ a b Sekeres, Matthew (2009-07-15). "Canucks take one for the Olympic team". The Globe and Mail. http://www.ctvolympics.ca/hockey/news/newsid=12893.html. Retrieved 2009-07-16. 
  18. ^ "Olympics put Canucks on record road grind". CBC Sports. 2009-07-16. http://www.cbc.ca/sports/hockey/story/2009/07/15/sp-canucks-olympics.html. Retrieved 2009-07-16. 

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