Connect with us


Vancouver Canucks’ free agency haul highlighted by winger Jake DeBrusk




VANCOUVER – Jake DeBrusk won’t have any trouble finding roommates when he moves for the first time in his NHL career.

After all, two of his former teammates are looking for new digs, too.

DeBrusk was the Vancouver Canucks’ biggest acquisition Monday. The club signed the 27-year-old left-winger to a seven-year, US$38.5-million contract as the NHL’s free-agent market opened.

“I knew I had a really good feeling about them,” DeBrusk said of Vancouver. “It’s been really exciting. I just can’t wait to get to the city and I can’t wait to get started. I feel very lucky and honoured to become a Vancouver Canuck.”

DeBrusk had 40 points (19 goals, 21 assists) in 80 games for the Bruins last season, then chipped in another five goals and six helpers in 13 playoff appearances.

Originally picked 14th overall by Boston in the 2015 draft, the six-foot-one, 198-pound forward has spent all seven seasons of his NHL career with the Bruins, registering 138 goals and 128 assists across 465 regular-season games.

He’ll be joined by former Bruins forward Danton Heinen and defenceman Derek Forbort, who both signed with the Canucks on Monday.

Heinen, a 28-year-old winger, took a two-year, $4.5-million deal and the 32-year-old Forbort inked a one-year, $1.5-million contract.

Boston, meanwhile, brought in former Vancouver blueliner Nikita Zadorov on a six-year. $30-million deal and signed former Canucks centre Elias Lindholm to a seven-year, $54.25-million contract.

Seeing five players move between two teams is “very unusual,” said Canucks general manager Patrik Allvin, but the two sides have some similarities in their cultures and playing styles.

“In my opinion, I think Boston has been a top team in terms of culture, standard, system over the years,” he said.

“I think (the new players) were extremely excited to come here and get a chance to continue building what we finished last year and the players we have in our core excites a lot of players.”

Heinen contributed 17 goals and 19 assists across 74 games for the Bruins last season.

The six-foot-two, 195-pound forward hails from Langley, B.C., just outside of Vancouver and said signing with the Canucks means pulling on the jersey of the team he grew up cheering for.

“To me, it does mean a lot to play close to home,” he said. “It’s something I’ve always wanted to do. It’s a passionate fan base and that’s something you want to play in front of. Also the team. I feel like it’s a team that’s competitive and not far away from winning. And that’s exciting.”

Forbort, too, saw possibility in Vancouver’s roster, particularly after the Canucks finished last season atop the Pacific Division and battled through two tough rounds in the playoffs before falling to the Edmonton Oilers in a seven-game series.

“They were a hard team to play against, they played fast, they have a lot of high-end talent and skill,” said Forbort, a veteran blueliner who contributed four assists in 35 games for Boston last season.

“I can kind of be a nice supporting role, do my job, do my role, do anything to help the team win. That’s what I’m looking forward to.”

Heading to a new market with former teammates makes some things easier, Forbort added.

“I already texted (DeBrusk), said ‘Where are you buying us a house?’ So we’ll see what he comes up with,” he said.

Vancouver also signed winger Keifer Sherwood to a two-year, $3-million contract Monday.

The six-foot, 194-pound native of Columbus, Ohio, had 10 goals and 17 assists in 68 games for the Predators last season — and proved to be a nuisance when Vancouver faced Nashville in the post-season’s first round.

“I think for me, it was just about identity and identifying the best fit. Obviously I got a little close up in playoffs,” Sherwood said. “So when all’s said and done, that’s kind of what excited me to be part of this group. There’s a lot of special things brewing and I definitely want to be part of it.”

After losing Zadorov’s size on the blue line, the Canucks brought in defenceman Vincent Desharnais on a two-year, $4-million deal.

The 28-year-old from Laval, Que., cemented his role as an NHL player last season, putting up one goal and 11 assists with 54 penalty minutes in 78 games for the Oilers.

The Canucks believe the six-foot-seven, 226-pound defenceman has more to give, too, Allvin said.

“He hasn’t been in the league for a long time ,” the GM said. “I think with the coaches I have here in Adam Foote and Sergei Gonchar, I believe they can help him get to the next level.”

Vancouver also picked up goaltender Jiri Patera on a two-year, two-way deal and added former Arizona Coyotes forward Nate Smith on a one-year, two-way contract.

The Canucks made another series of signings ahead of free agency, signing new agreements with veteran defenceman Tyler Myers, burly winger Dakota Joshua and depth forward Teddy Blueger.

“I think we were pretty good here today about managing our money and getting, hopefully, good value out of the players we got here,” Allvin said.

This report by The Canadian Press was first published July 1, 2024.

Source link

Continue Reading


Air Canada cuts 2024 forecast amid tough competition in international markets



MONTREAL – Air Canada is lowering its 2024 forecast as it grapples with tough competition in international markets and its planes aren’t as full as it anticipated during the second half of the year.

The airline says it now expects its adjusted earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortization for the year to be within $3.1 billion to $3.4 billion, down from its previous outlook of $3.7 billion to $4.2 billion.

The new outlook comes as the company reported preliminary results for the second quarter ahead of its next earnings date of Aug. 7.

Air Canada says it expects operating revenues of around $5.5 billion for its second quarter, compared with $5.4 billion in the same quarter last year.

It also expects operating income of $466 million, down from $802 million in the second quarter of 2023.

The carrier says it is effectively managing costs through productivity, cost reductions and other cost discipline initiatives.

This report by The Canadian Press was first published July 22, 2024.

Companies in this story: (TSX:AC)

The Canadian Press. All rights reserved.

Source link

Continue Reading


Brittney Griner honored to be wearing a USA Basketball jersey again after time in Russian prison



PHOENIX (AP) — There were times Brittney Griner thought she would never wear a USA Basketball jersey again.

The two-time Olympic gold medalist was sitting in a Russian prison in 2022, sentenced to nine years in jail for drug possession and smuggling. Playing for her country again was a far-fetched idea at that point. Ten months later she was free after a high-profile prisoner exchange.

Now, 19 months later, she’s suiting up for the U.S. in the Paris Games — her first trip to play overseas since returning from Russia.

Griner, wearing her No. 15 USA jersey before the team played at the All-Star Game on Saturday, said she gets chills now just putting it on.

“It means everything to me honestly,” Griner told The Associated Press in an interview. “For me to now have the honor to wear it again and potentially win gold is icing on the cake for everything.”

Griner had gone to Russia to play basketball and supplement her WNBA income. She had done it for years. No more. The 33-year-old said she will only play in America unless USA Basketball asks her to play. Griner has dedicated a lot of time representing playing with the U.S. team and feels 100% safe when she’s with them.

“It’s different, we are so protected by the staff around us,” she said. “It’s different, it’s way different. The level of comfortability and security we have right now makes it a lot easier.”

It’s been a busy few weeks for Griner as her wife Cherelle gave birth to their son Bash on July 8. Griner said it was tough saying goodbye to him for a few weeks.

“We got some really cool photos before I left,” she said. “He doesn’t know anything right now, but one day it will be cool for him to have that footage. There’s so much footage.”

She’ll have her USA Basketball family to lean on while in Paris. Her teammates and coaches are thrilled to have her back playing for the U.S.

“That is something when you think about it. Think outside the Olympics, someone’s personal experience and what she went through and still continues to go through,” U.S. coach Cheryl Reeve said. “We were all thinking of BG when she was away and we didn’t know if this moment would be possible. I’m thrilled for her personally and thrilled for our basketball team.”

Griner got to spend a few minutes at practice on Friday with Second Gentleman Doug Emhoff. He and the Vice President met with Griner when she returned to the U.S. and attended her first WNBA game back in Los Angeles — his hometown.

He was moved that Griner wanted to represent the U.S. again.

“Really getting chills just thinking about it,” he told the AP. “Where she was, and where she is now, to see her positivity and spirit it’s really compelling. Great to see that.”

Emhoff will lead the U.S. delegation to the closing ceremonies of the Olympic Games, which is the night of the women’s gold medal game that Griner and her teammates expect to be playing in.

“Hopefully, everything goes the way we want it to go and that anthem’s playing,” Griner said of the U.S. winning an eighth straight Olympic gold medal. “It’s going to be way more emotional this time.”


AP Summer Olympics:

The Canadian Press. All rights reserved.

Source link

Continue Reading


Cyprus displays once-looted antiquities dating back thousands of years



NICOSIA, Cyprus (AP) — Cyprus on Monday put on display artifacts — some of them thousands of years old — that were returned after a Turkish art dealer looted them from the ethnically divided island nation decades ago.

Aydin Dikmen took the artifacts from the country’s breakaway north in the years after Cyprus’ split in 1974, when Turkey invaded following a coup mounted by supporters of union with Greece. The antiquities were kept in Germany after authorities there seized them in 1997, and protracted legal battles secured their repatriation in three batches, the last one this year.

Addressing the unveiling ceremony at Cyprus’ archaeological museum, President Nikos Christodoulides said the destruction of a country’s cultural heritage as evidenced in recent conflicts becomes a “deliberate campaign of cultural and religious cleansing that aims to eliminate identity.”

Among the 60 most recently returned artifacts put on display include jewelry from the Chalcolithic Period between 3500-1500 B.C. and Bronze Age bird-shaped idols.

Antiquities that Dikmen also looted but were returned years ago include 1,500-year-old mosaics of Saints Luke, Mark, Matthew and James. They are among the few examples of early Christian works to survive the Iconoclastic period in the 8th and 9th centuries when most such works were destroyed.

Cyprus’ authorities and the country’s Orthodox Church for decades have been hunting for the island’s looted antiquities and centuries-old relics from as many as 500 churches in open auctions and on the black market.

The museum’s antiquities curator, Eftychia Zachariou, told the ceremony that Cyprus in recent years has benefited from a shift in thinking among authorities in many countries who now opt to repatriate antiquities of dubious provenance.

The Canadian Press. All rights reserved.

Source link

Continue Reading