Hes that great of a hockey player

BUFFALO, N. nike free 5.0 v4 .Y. — James Neals first full year with the Pittsburgh Penguins keeps getting better. And now the high-scoring forward will be around for another six seasons after signing US$30 million contract extension on Sunday. “With the new commitment the organizations going to give me, it couldnt be a better feeling,” Neal said, shortly after signing a deal reached hours before the Penguins prepared to play at Buffalo. “I couldnt have found a better spot.” The contract extension comes nearly a year to the day the Penguins acquired Neal in a trade with Dallas that sent defenceman Alex Goligoski to the Stars. And it marks a significant reward for a 24-year-old who is enjoying a career season playing on a prolific line with Evgeni Malkin and Chris Kunitz. Neals career-best 30 goals are second on the team — behind Malkins 32 — and tied for fourth in the NHL. He also has a career-best 56 points and 13 power-play goals, tied for the league lead. Its a big step for the player who had difficulty finding a role with Pittsburgh last year, managing just a goal and five assists in 20 games. “Obviously, it didnt work out right away,” said Neal, who was initially acquired to boost an injury-riddled lineup that was playing without Malkin and Sidney Crosby. “But coming into this year, starting over, having a good feeling of things, things falling into place, its been a great feeling.” Neal was in the final season of his contract, and is now locked up through the 2017-18 season. Neal has been consistent throughout the year. He opened by scoring goals in each of Pittsburghs first eight home games, and also had an eight-game point streak, in which Neal had seven goals and four assists from Dec. 8-27. A first-time all-star selection, hes failed to get a point only 19 times in 58 games this season, with his longest drought a six-game stretch from Dec. 31-Jan. 11. Coach Dan Bylsma was confident Neal would find his touch in Pittsburgh. “Although he didnt put up points, you saw the way James Neal could play,” coach Dan Bylsma said. “Hes a dangerous player. He can skate. Hes a physical player. And he also obviously can shoot the lights off the puck. Hes done all those things.” He has 31 goals and 62 points in 72 regular-season games with Pittsburgh. “I love everything about what goes on here and how we play the game,” Neal said. “I couldnt see myself anywhere else, and hopefully the success continues.” nike free 3.0 v3 . While others perceived an improved Canadian performance over last weeks win over the U.S. Eagles, the former All Black saw his rugby team pay the price for abandoning its game plan. nike free 3.0 v4 . – Scott Piercy could only think of one word when he rolled in a 7-foot putt for par on the final hole at the Reno-Tahoe Open to claim his first victory on the PGA Tour.OTTAWA — The Ottawa Senators may have clinched a playoff spot, but they still have much to prove. After finishing eighth last season and surprising many by qualifying for the playoffs, this years team set its sights on improvement. With a 2-1 overtime win Thursday against the Washington Capitals the Senators clinched a playoff berth, but with two games remaining the Senators could finish as high as sixth. “Wed like to finish strongly and as high as we possibly can just to say that we did,” said Senators coach Paul MacLean on Friday. “I think thats important for our team. We were eighth last year so if we were to finish seventh or sixth thats better and thats an improvement and thats what wed like to see.” Ottawa (24-16-6) will host the Philadelphia Flyers (22-22-3) on Saturday and will play the Boston Bruins (28-13-5) on Sunday to wrap up the season. The Senators are expected to go with its full roster against the Flyers, but may consider giving some of its veterans the night off against Boston. Craig Anderson will get the start against Philadelphia and MacLean admitted they will consider giving Robin Lehner the start on Sunday. In addition to giving Lehner the start, he hasnt played since April 11, the Senators have a number of players theyd like to get in the lineup including forwards Peter Regin and Jim OBrien as well as defencemen Andre Benoit and Mike Lundin. With so little time off before the start of the playoffs Sunday could be Ottawas last opportunity to give some of its veterans a day off. “We want to make sure that if anyone has anything thats nagging that could become a bigger issue wed be wise not to play them,” said MacLean. It would come as no surprise if captain Daniel Alfredsson, Milan Michalek, Sergei Gonchar and Erik Karlsson were all given Sunday off. Karlsson, who made his return Thursday after missing 10 weeks with a partiallly torn Achilles, said he felt no ill effects following the game against Washington. nike free powerlines. “I feel like every other day,” said Karlsson. “Overall it feels really good. “Im playing (Saturday) for sure and Sundays another day and I think well go from there.” Players admitted to feeling a certain sense of relief waking up and knowing a trip to the playoffs is now guaranteed. “We battled hard all year and to finally make it feels really good,” said Alfredsson. “We have two more games here to continue what weve been doing.” Prior to beating the Capitals, Ottawa had struggled in its last two games, losing both, and want nothing more than to head into the post-season feeling good about its game. “We have to make sure we continue to play the right way and continue to get better and improve and keep working together and make sure everybody feels like were on the right page,” said Anderson. “When we play our best games we limit the amount of time in our own zone and spend a lot of time in the offensive zone.” The one area the Senators would love to see improvement is on its power play, which has gone 4-for-41 in its last ten games. Ottawa is 20th in the NHL with the man advantage. Karlssons return could have a huge impact on its special teams as his speed and vision were most definitely missed. “He controls the game, he has that power,” said Marc Methot, Karlssons defensive partner. “Hes that great of a hockey player and having him on the power play has been a nice change. Being a very defensive minded team as of late we have that weapon on our squad now.” Notes: Paul MacLean said Jason Spezza has been skating, but hes “not even close” to joining the team. That being said the fact Spezza is on the ice is progress. Milan Michalek, Sergei Gonchar and Chris Phillips were all given a maintenance day. ‘ ‘ ‘

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