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Quick Hits: The Deadlines Edition

In Red Wings Land

Scoop: There was no shortage of excitement around Zadina when the Red Wings selected him at No. 6 overall in 2018. GM Steve Yzerman doesn’t tip his hand, but the sense league-wide is a change of scenery is in order for Zadina. Teams perked up when Zadina spent six games on the top line from Feb. 9-26, seeing it as a ‘showcase’ opportunity ahead of a potential trade. He scored twice in those six games, putting him on track for 11 goals in 80 games. Zadina is a gifted shooter, but the knock on him is that he’s become more of a perimeter player – and only a select few players (Alex Ovechkin or Steven Stamkos) can consistently score in today’s NHL from the outside. Zadina was also a healthy scratch on Jan. 4 and his ice time is down more than two and a half minutes from last season, which is a lot considering the recent bump on the first line is already factored into the equation.

Nothing we haven’t already talked about and it’s just a bit putting him on the board rather than exploring any return, but it’s national discussion rather than local so that’s worth something.

Around the League

Agent for Russian-born NHL players says clients dealing with threats, discrimination after invasion of Ukraine – ESPN

“While some of my clients can speak freely in the safety of being in North America, their family could be scrutinized back home and anything could happen,” Milstein said. “I’m a proud American, so I ask let’s come together united. My own childhood home is being bombed as I speak to my friends back home. I haven’t slept in six days because this is such a difficult time. But people are picking on the wrong crowd. I can speak on behalf of my clients: They want world peace like everybody else. They’re not being treated like that.”

I’m not a fan of Dan Milstein’s but he’s got a unique perspective on this situation based on his upbringing and experiences.

CCM Hockey, MassMutual drop Ovechkin from promotional campaigns – NBC Sports

“Although Mr. Ovechkin is not responsible for the Russian government’s actions, we took the decision to not use him (or any Russian player) on any global CCM communication at this point,” CCM Hockey chief executive Marrouane Nabih said in a statement to TSN.

The MassMutual featuring Ovechkin, his wife, Anastasia Shubskaya, and his Capitals teammate Nicklas Backstrom began running in October. The company said “the ad is no longer on the air” and it has also been pulled from its YouTube page.

I really liked that commercial.  Oh well. It makes sense.  We’ve already had the conversation about the unique situation Ovechkin is in, but the companies that would use him to advertise don’t owe it to him to keep tying their image to him.

EA is cutting Russian teams from its FIFA and NHL games over the Ukraine invasion – NPR

“We stand with the people of Ukraine and join the voices around the world calling for peace,” one of the statements reads.

It’s also that FIFA and the IIHF got involved and since EA licenses from those places they get to say they cut ties they were going to have to cut anyway.

Non-Russian News

NHL Rumour Roundup: Is Anaheim the most interesting deadline team? – Sportsnet

But the most impactful choice for the Ducks may be what to do with Hampus Lindholm. One of the quieter top shutdown defenders in the game, he’ll be looking for a raise on his $5.205 million cap hit and turned 28 in January. The Ducks would probably prefer to keep him, but if terms can’t be agreed to by March 21, it would be very risky to keep him and then risk losing him to the summer free agent market.

“I think going into this, I’m looking at it like we could make the playoffs, we could miss the playoffs,’’ Verbeek told Pierre LeBrun of The Athletic. “At the end of the day, there’s no guarantee I can get those three free agents back. I’m going to attempt to sign them, if it doesn’t happen, I just can’t let them walk out the door free.”

Definitely keeping an eye on Linholm as he approaches UFA.

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