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Eric Staal Returning to NHL (59 Goals Shy of 500)


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Eric Staal excited for chance to be 'piece of the puzzle' with Panthers

Forward will be with Florida at training camp on PTO, could earn contract to play with brother Marc

https://www.nhl.com/news/eric-staal-excited-for-chance-to-be-piece-of-the-puzzle-with-florida/c-335384018

 

EDINA, Minn. -- Eric Staal is looking for an opportunity to prove he still can be a valuable asset in the NHL. A professional tryout during training camp with the Florida Panthers is the first step.

 

"It's a great squad down there, a lot of really great players," Staal said Wednesday after playing in a game at Da Beauty League, a 4-on-4 summer hockey league comprised of NHL and NCAA Division I players with ties to Minnesota. "I'm just looking for that opportunity to get back in the League and be a piece of the puzzle down there.

 

"I like the way they're stacked up, and I like the way that they look. They've obviously made some changes and now it's about building toward that and winning the Stanley Cup. That's their goal, and for me to have an opportunity to go to camp to see what I can do with those guys, it's incredibly special and I'm excited to have that chance."

The 37-year-old forward last played in the NHL in 2020-21, when he had 13 points (five goals, eight assists) in 53 regular-season games with the Buffalo Sabres and Montreal Canadiens, and eight points (two goals, six assists) in 21 Stanley Cup Playoff games to help the Canadiens reach the Cup Final.

 

Staal has 1,034 points (441 goals, 593 assists) in 1,293 regular-season games with the Carolina Hurricanes, New York Rangers, Minnesota Wild, Sabres and Canadiens, and 59 points (23 goals, 36 assists) in 83 playoff games. He won the Cup with the Hurricanes in 2006.

 

Last season he had five points (two goals, three assists) in five games with Iowa of the American Hockey League after signing a PTO with the team, and at the 2022 Beijing Olympics he had four points (one goal, three assists) in five games and was captain for Canada, which finished sixth.

 

"It was unique," Staal said. "I was by myself, losing the Stanley Cup Final in the middle of July. And then the next season started two months later and it just didn't work out there (in Montreal). And then it didn't work out anywhere else. And it was just kind of like, all right, where do we head now? I stayed in shape, and the Olympics came about, so I've had so many unique experiences.

 

"You take the best of what's given in front of you daily and you prepare the way you need to, and that's what I've done. And I'll continue to do the same for the rest of the summer. And now this opportunity in Florida is going to be great. So I'm excited about that."

 

The Panthers (58-18-6), who won the Presidents' Trophy last season and reached the second round of the playoffs, and will return much of their core, including forwards Aleksander Barkov, Sam Bennett and Sam Reinhart, defenseman Aaron Ekblad and goalie Sergei Bobrovsky. Forward Matthew Tkachuk was added in a trade with the Calgary Flames on July 22 for forward Jonathan Huberdeau, defenseman MacKenzie Weegar and forward prospect Cole Schwindt, and Paul Maurice was hired as coach June 22.

 

Florida also signed defenseman Marc Staal to a one-year contract July 13, giving older brother Eric an even bigger reason to be excited at the opportunity he has with the Panthers.

 

"That was a big reason why I'm doing what I'm doing, to go down there, having him and maybe having that opportunity to play with him," said Staal, who previously played with Marc with the Rangers in 2015-16. "It's special, one, to play in the League, and then to be able to do that alongside your brother on a team with Stanley Cup aspirations is something that you can only dream about. So I'm going to try and prepare myself the best I can to be able to contribute with that group and we'll see how it shakes out."

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5 hours ago, NHL HHOF said:

He should go for 20.

No, he shouldn't.  Fenton was an idiot for paying him what he paid him for the 16th season, let alone giving him a contract that paid him that through the 17th season where he didn't even deserve an NHL lineup position.

 

Zito will be crazy to offer him a contract, even at league minimum just to play with Marc.  Will only be a waste of a roster spot, as Marc is already.

Edited by FireDillabaugh
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His most important achievement - Triple Gold Club member since 2010. Solid persistently productive hard working player when played for Minnesota during 4 seasons. I am surprise that he is living in Edina, MN. Probably he likes our state.

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  • 3 weeks later...

Players signed to professional tryouts for NHL training camps

Eric Staal, Aston-Reese, DeKeyser among those looking to earn job
https://www.nhl.com/news/players-signed-to-professional-tryouts-for-nhl-training-camps/c-335539084

 

Eric Staal, Florida Panthers

The 37-year-old forward had five points (two goals, three assists) for Iowa, the AHL affiliate of the Minnesota Wild, after signing a PTO on Jan. 13, and four points (one goal, three assists) for Canada as its captain at the 2022 Beijing Olympics. Staal last played in the NHL in 2020-21, when he had 13 points (five goals, eight assists) in 53 games with the Sabres and Canadiens. He has 1,034 points (441 goals, 593 assists) in 1,293 regular-season games for the Carolina Hurricanes, New York Rangers, Wild, Sabres and Canadiens, and 59 points (23 goals, 36 assists) in 83 playoff games. He helped the Hurricanes win the Stanley Cup in 2006.

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On 8/30/2022 at 2:23 PM, FireDillabaugh said:

No, he shouldn't.  Fenton was an idiot for paying him what he paid him for the 16th season, let alone giving him a contract that paid him that through the 17th season where he didn't even deserve an NHL lineup position.

 

Zito will be crazy to offer him a contract, even at league minimum just to play with Marc.  Will only be a waste of a roster spot, as Marc is already.

 

Agree. His last season with Montréal was effin difficult for him, he should've retired after this last ride. It's a bit sad to finish a brilliant career because coaches and GMs are showing you that you don't have the level of play anymore, rather than take yourself the decision.

 

 

On 8/31/2022 at 1:18 PM, Alexandron said:

His most important achievement - Triple Gold Club member since 2010. Solid persistently productive hard working player when played for Minnesota during 4 seasons. I am surprise that he is living in Edina, MN. Probably he likes our state.

 

He's from Thunder Bay, so basically next door.

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  • 2 weeks later...
6 hours ago, NHL HHOF said:

Someone should have signed him last season, then he would have been much closer to 500 this season.

Sorry.  But, actually, no.  They shouldn't have.  There were good reasons why he wasn't signed last season.  Just as they shouldn't sign him this season.  It's not about giving him the gift of playing with his brother.  It's about him no longer being an NHL player and time for him to retire.

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I'd wait to see what kind of shape he is really in before making judgements on him, but, if a team signs him expecting him to tack on the goals and get closer to 500 goals scored, while helping out the offense, then they will likely be disapointed.

If, however, they sign him (assuming he is any kind of ready NHL shape), and he is relegated (and more important Eric himself embraces the role) to a 4th line center role to give the top 3 centers a breather and stymie the other team's bottom sixers, then he may a decent add for a team looking for a guy who, despite eroded skills, still plays a smart game, isn't afraid to check, and can help younger players see how a real professional prepares for a game.

He used to be one of the better face off men in the league too.....last I saw of him, he was fairly league standard in that department now, but, that isn't bad when there are plenty of centers who aren't particularly good in gaining possession at all off the puck drop on a consistent basis.

It would be a nice story for Staal to get to 500, but hopefully that WON'T be a reason a team signs him.
A defensive specialist, playing less than league average minutes and helping out in the locker room? Sure, I'd take a chance on him that way.

Edited by TropicalFruitGirl26
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1 hour ago, TropicalFruitGirl26 said:

He used to be one of the better face off men in the league too.....last I saw of him, he was fairly league standard in that department now, but, that isn't bad when there are plenty of centers who aren't particularly good in gaining possession at all off the puck drop on a consistent basis.

Nah.  A 49% career guy.  That's really nothing to boast about, and certainly not something to earn an NHL contract when he's about to turn 38 and hasn't shown he's an NHL player for a few years.

 

1 hour ago, TropicalFruitGirl26 said:

A defensive specialist,

Lol.  He is certainly not a defensive specialist at this point in his career.  He's never been one in his career.  But, he certainly isn't even close to being that at this point.  I guess you haven't seen him play in many years.  What he is is a defensive liability who's incapable of producing.  Meaning, not an NHL player any longer.

Edited by FireDillabaugh
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Man they still refuse to put the Stall brothers together again tonight...I doubt they'd be that cruel as to not let them have a single preseason game together then cut him...so I'm thinking they're going to keep him into the regular season so they can play together this year...

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