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a night where a loss showed their d

OTTAWA - For the second straight year the Ottawa Senators have lost their captain on the opening day of NHL free agency. Kyle Arrington Patriots Jersey . The Senators traded Jason Spezza, who was coming off his first year as captain, to the Dallas Stars on Tuesday for winger Alex Chiasson along with prospects Alex Guptill, Nicholas Paul and a second-round pick in 2015. Ottawa prospect Ludwig Karlsson was also part of the trade. Last year the Senators bid farewell to longtime captain Daniel Alfredsson after he chose to sign with the Detroit Red Wings. News of Spezzas departure was much less shocking to Senators fans, as the 31-year-old had requested a trade following the end of the season. "It was a combination of things and the fact I have one year left on my deal," said Spezza, when asked for the reasons behind the trade request. "Only having one year left on my contract I thought it was fair talking to Bryan (Murray) now so we dont get into a situation next year where were always talking about if Im extending or why Im not extending or whats going on moving forward. "I felt like it was best for me to move on and this was the appropriate time to take care of all this through the summer so that I can have a fresh start during the season and move on and the team can move on as well." Senators general manager Bryan Murray acknowledged this was a very difficult deal to be made. "As I said all along you dont get equal value for a skilled point getter, but with the request being three or four times made to us, and in spite of what everybody else says we didnt encourage any movement, we were asked if it would happen," said Murray. "I didnt want to go through another summer of issues … Dallas was the one option that I had. Jim Nill was very straightforward in what he could offer me." Murray told reporters that a contract extension had been offered and refused by Spezza. He said three trade offers had been in play at the NHL draft last weekend, but disappeared as the days went by leaving the Dallas offer as the lone deal on the table. The Senators would like to add another centre to their lineup and Murray said hes working on a deal that he hopes to finalize soon. With Spezzas departure Murray sees the Senators forging a new identity and believes Chiasson will fit right in. "Weve always wanted to shift to a hard working, competitive team that we had two years ago and then last year for some reason we got off the track," said Murray. "Were going to try and get that back on track." Chiasson, who had 13 goals and 35 points with the Stars last season, is the centrepiece of the trade, but in no way will the 23-year-old replace Spezza. Love him or hate him, Spezza was a point-per-game player over his 11 seasons with the Senators. In 686 games Spezza scored 251 goals and had 687 points. Spezza is in the final year of his contract with a $7 million cap hit and $4 million in actual salary. Over the course of his career Spezza has often been a lightning rod for criticism, and things seemed to come to a head this season for the veteran centre. When asked whether or not he felt the criticism was fair, Spezza said it came with the responsibility of being a star player. "I was the highest paid guy on the team and the guy who had been there for a long time so fingers were pointed at me at times, but I also got credit at times," Spezza said. "When you play in a Canadian market and you play in a city like that and youre in the same spot for a long time if you expect not to have the finger pointing you have unrealistic expectations. So at times the finger was pointing at me, but it was the reality of the situation that I was in." Spezza said his decision didnt come lightly and that he will miss many things about Ottawa, but in the end he was looking for a team that would give him the best chance at winning a Stanley Cup. Fans will remember that Alfredsson uttered nearly the exact same words last year after signing with Detroit. With two of its top players bolting from the organization one has to wonder what effect this will have on the Senators reputation. Murray is clearly frustrated by the perception that Ottawa is being viewed as a frugal team thats not willing to spend. "Ive never had one player Ive called and asked if they would be interested in coming to Ottawa say No Im worried about the money on your team and I wouldnt come," said Murray. "Perception is what you make it to be and what you really believe to be true. I think players know they come here and are treated well." Despite losing Spezza and Alfredsson in the span of two years, Murray said the team wont be forced to go into a rebuild. "No, were past that," said Murray. "Were going to have a good hockey team. Were going to compete. We lose a little bit at centre ice, we gain a little bit on the wing, weve got a couple of young guys coming that are going to be a different brand of player…I think our team is going to be really competitive, hard working group of people. I think were going to be well off going forward." Joining Spezza in Dallas is Ales Hemsky, who turned down an offer from the Senators for a contract extension. Hemsky was acquired at the trade deadline and showed chemistry with Spezza, but knowing the captain wanted out left Hemsky with little reason to remain in Ottawa. Both players said they were looking forward to being reunited in Dallas. The Senators did re-sign left-wing Milan Michalek to a three-year, $12-million contract Tuesday. Murray said Michalek had been offered a five-year offer elsewhere, but chose to remain in Ottawa. Brandon Bolden Patriots Jersey . -- Manager Bob Melvin shuffled the Athletics batting order and got the type of production he was looking for from the top of the lineup. Donald Brown Patriots Jersey . PETERSBURG, Fla.As a football manager you can easily be distracted by what the league table tells you. Take Vancouver Whitecaps boss Carl Robinson, for example. The young manager has now taken charge of a grand total of six professional matches as the boss of a club side. Many men in his position wouldnt be sleeping as easily lately after watching his team suffer back-to-back defeats in the past two weeks, after previously starting his career on a four match unbeaten run. However, it is clear Robinson is not concerned about how results have turned against him lately. If he was, his starting XI in Los Angeles on Saturday would have been very different. For a first year manager, who just seven days earlier had suffered his first loss to Colorado, it would have been the easy thing to do to insert veterans Nigel Reo Coker and Kenny Miller into the starting XI against the superpower Galaxy. Except, in the days before the game, Robinson took a look at all of the matches the Whitecaps had played against LA in their stadium. Four games. Four losses. One goal scored. Ten goals conceded. Battered. Bullied. Humbled. With the veterans all playing. Robinson decided to go against an unflattering history and opted for the long-term risk card from the dealer rather than taking the safe one. LA Galaxy is, themselves, quietly going about a transition of their own as they work on a new tactical shape featuring a pair of technical midfielders. However, any team featuring the likes of Robbie Keane, Landon Donovan, Juninho and Omar Gonzalez, will always be a real handful. Their midfield diamond features a lot of technical players that works superbly on the counter but can also ensure they can keep the ball better. With the movement of the front two it often can be a flexible 4-6-0. In fact, it is a fascinating system to keep an eye on in MLS and one that provides a stern test for their opponents. Robinson decided Gershon Koffie and Russell Teibert needed to face that test in a double pivot central midfield tandem inside a labeled 4-2-3-1 that was effectively a 4-3-3 hybrid. He decided Kekuta Manneh needed to take that test on the left. Three men, all 22 or younger, given a huge responsibility by the manager. Some called it bold, others felt it was risky but what it was, even before a ball was kicked, was a decision from a manager completely comfortable in his job and his own ability. It was not a move of caution. The move required the manager to have extensive discussions with both Miller and Reo-Coker on Saturday morning. That could not have been easy. The Game The Whitecaps would lose the match 1-0. Robinson told us on the TSN broadcast at half-time that the team couldnt afford to switch off from the tactical discipline they had shown in the first half. Within minutes, one lapse cost them as Keane ran untracked from a deep area and volleyed home the games solitary goal. The Positives For the Whitecaps it was a kick in the teeth because they had contained their bulllies for 45 impressive minutes. Julian Edelman Patriots Jersey. . Koffie and Teibert needed to be aggressive, smart and tactically sound, not separating too far from the centre-backs, which would give space for Keane and Donovan to come into.  They did exactly that. Teibert, in particular, impressed against Keane. The veteran Irishman was a victim of Teiberts physical style early in the match and from that moment Keane put a target on the Canadians back and tried to intimidate him. Teibert didnt run away from the fight and stuck to his game. The visitors struggled to find outlets on counter attacks but Teibert did look, on a number of occasions, to play the long diagonal balls that Gonzalez plays for LA (something the Whitecaps defenders cannot do). The Weaknesses The decision to play 4-2-3-1, rather than match up diamonds in midfield, was vindicated by the play at the base of midfield but, much like the last away game in New England, issues with the 3 remain. Manneh defended his flank well when required and cut in centrally to make up an attacking two when the Whitecaps moved forward but he remains very raw and needs more time in the team to help him get a better read of a through ball so he doesnt get caught offside as much. Pedro Morales and Sebastian Fernandez struggled. Juninho was excellent against Morales who simply didnt find enough space to be effective. Fernandez, however, had much more room in a game that was very narrow but was too hurried in possession and made wrong decisions in distribution. Both were removed in the second half and Morales looked less than 100 per cent physically. If he wasnt hurting it would have been interesting to see if Robinson would have pushed him wider to find space and leave Morales, Mattocks and, the other substitute, Kenny Miller on the field at the same time. Star Man Keane scored the games only goal and was a class apart from most of the players on the field, however, it is important to note that most of his chances (other than the goal and once the game was stretched late) all came from deep areas on the field, which meant the Whitecaps had done their job. The same can be said about Donovan. And that is one of the positives that Robinson will take away from this game. Never once did he see his selections as a gamble. He rewarded his young players with key roles in a big game and they paid him back. The final score meant the Whitecaps got nothing in the standings but for Robinson this was short-term (minimal) pain for long-term gain, giving himself and his young players a platform to learn some things about each other. It is not often a young inexperienced manager puts the vision of the club first ahead of his own reputation and win/loss record. For a team who has had too many managers in their short time in Major League Soccer, this was a night where a loss showed their decision to hire Robinson was indeed a correct one. Finally, it appears the bosses are all singing from the same hymn sheet in Vancouver. Cheap NFL Jerseys nfl jerseys china ' ' '
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