Just got off the phone with Dean Lombardi, but before I transcribe all that, here’s what Terry Murray had to say today about new acquisitions Jeff Halpern and Fredrik Modin…
MURRAY: “Jeff Halpern has been a pretty good player in this league. He’s a guy who is going to bring a lot of intensity, a lot of hard work. He’s a special-teams player. It remains to be seen exactly where that fit will happen. It will probably start on that fourth line, in the center position, but he’s capable of playing on your top three lines. I know that he’s finishing off in Tampa Bay, recently, playing with Lecavalier and with Malone, playing on the right side. He has some great skill level that he’s going to bring to the game, but most importantly he’s a quality veteran guy that is going to compete very hard when it comes down to the grit part of the game, and when we get ourselves into the playoffs, he’s going to be an important kind of player for us.
“In my mind, he gives us real good depth. Now we have balance, right through our lineup, down the middle, and again he has the flexibility to move up into a third-line checking responsibility, maybe on the right side. He can play both those center and right wing positions. It gives us good balance, good depth and a veteran player that’s going to give us that extra push as we get into the critical games.”
(on Modin, starting with whether he is healthy…)
MURRAY: “Modin was in the lineup last night, in the game against Vancouver. I know he didn’t play in the third period, and I don’t know the reason for that. I don’t know a lot about him. You watch him, as you move through it as a coach and scout. When I was in Philadelphia, he was a real important player for Tampa Bay in their Stanley Cup year. I hear a lot of positive things about his personality in the locker room, his work habits, the kind of team that he wants to play on.
“He’s a big-bodied guy, and I know that if he gets his game back on track, to full speed, that he can have an impact on the game, because of his size, his strength and his attitude. He’s got a cannon of a shot. So there are a lot of great qualities that he’s going to bring. I hope, as you mentioned, that health is on his side, that everything is going to fall into place and that he can come in and really contribute for us.”