NEWARK, N.J. - Expect the New Jersey Devils defence corps to have a little more bite next season.
Scott Stevens, one of the hardest-hitting defencemen in NHL history, joined the Devils as an assistant coach Tuesday along with Matt Shaw. The two new assistants will work alongside head coach Peter DeBoer and holdovers Dave Barr and Chris Terreri.
"Both Peter (DeBoer) and I look forward to the additions of Scott Stevens and Matt Shaw as assistant coaches," Devils general manager Lou Lamoriello said. "They bring experience to our coaching staff with Scott's 22 years as a Hall of Fame defenceman and five seasons as a special assignment coach; and Matt's 19 seasons of coaching success at every level."
Stevens and Shaw, who was an assistant with the San Jose Sharks the last three seasons, replace Larry Robinson and Adam Oates, both of whom left the organization to take other jobs. Robinson joined the Sharks while Oates was hired as head coach of the Washington Capitals.
'HAWKS HIRE KOMPON
The old gang is back together again.
The Chicago Blackhawks hired assistant coach Jamie Kompon Tuesday, reuniting him with 'Hawks head coach Joel Quenneville and assistant Mike Kitchen. The trio worked together for a number of years with the St. Louis Blues, including during their record-setting season of 1999-2000.
"Jamie will bring us all the great qualities you look for in a coach, most notably his work ethic and a winning resume," Quenneville said. "We have a great working relationship and I am confident he will be a great fit with us here in Chicago."
Kompon, 45, spent the last six seasons as an assistant coach with the Stanley Cup-champion Los Angeles Kings.
"He has over 15 years of NHL coaching experience and some obvious familiarity with our staff, having worked under Joel and Mike in St. Louis, which will help our staff and players with the transition," Blackhawks general manager Stan Bowman said.
PREDS, WEBER TALKING
The Nashville Predators have talked with the agents for defenceman Shea Weber about a long-term contract extension.
The Preds can ill-afford to lose Weber, who will become an unrestricted free agent after the 2012-13 season, after defenceman Ryan Suter bolted to the suddenly-flush Minnesota Wild. With that in mind, general manager David Poile has been talking with Kevin Epp and Jarrett Bousquet of Titan Sports in the hopes of getting Weber locked up.
"Right now my priority is to see Shea signed and hopefully finalize a longer term deal with Shea," Poile told The Tennessean. "To me it all revolves around that decision. It's ongoing and hopefully we'll talk later in the week. I would say (we discussed) everything about the Predators, where we are and where we're going and what part Shea has with that."
Poile also indicated the Predators "would be very interested" if UFA forward Shane Doan decides to not re-sign with the Phoenix Coyotes.
The Michigan Daily and reporter Matt Slovin have been served with libel notices, according to Yahoo! Sports.
The Kitchener Rangers are suing the University of Michigan student newspaper over a report, based on an anonymous source, that the Ontario Hockey League club had allegedly offered Winnipeg Jets first-rounder Jacob Trouba $200,000 to play for it this season. Trouba has commited to play for the Michigan Wolverines of the NCAA.
"It's really disturbing to me what the Rangers are doing and it's bullying," Herschel Fink, the lawyer representing the Daily and Slovin, told Yahoo! "It's bullying a student newspaper and student journalists who are reporting on a legitimate subject of public interest, particularly in the public interest of those who follow hockey."
The newspaper has said it stands by Slovin's report but Trouba's family has denied it, saying in a statement that "there is absolutely no truth or merit to the recent media reports that the Kitchener Rangers have offered Jacob any remuneration."
The Rangers have filed the lawsuit in a Kitchener court. The Daily and Slovin have 40 says to file their defence.