Lightning to buy out Lecavlier’s contract
The Tampa Bay Lightning will say goodbye to captain and all-time scoring leader Vinny Lecavlier.
The Lightning announced Thursday that they will buy out the remaining portion of the center’s contract.
“Vinny has been a significant reason for many of our past successes, including the 2004 Stanley Cup, and his contributions to the community are immeasurable,” Tampa general manager Steve Yzerman said in a statement.
Lecavlier, 33, has seven years and $45 million left on his deal, with a reported annual value of $7.73 million. By using the buy-out, the club eliminates the contract’s hit to their salary cap and must pay two-thirds of its existing value across twice the term of the contract — or $24.67 million over 14 years. Lecavlier’s deal also includes an $8 million bonus that must be paid in full.
Lecavlier can sign with any team except Tampa Bay on July 5.
Chicago commission approves major renovations to Wrigley
CHICAGO — The Chicago landmarks commission voted Thursday to approve many of the major elements of a proposed $300 million renovation of historic Wrigley Field, home of the Chicago Cubs.
But the commission delayed until next month a decision on one of the most controversial portions of the plan — a 6,000-square foot video screen over left field in the 99-year-old ballpark.
Ex-Phillie Daulton has two brain tumors
Former Philadelphia Phillies catcher Darren Daulton, an immensely popular member of the 1993 National League championship team, is scheduled to have surgery next week after doctors discovered two brain tumors.
Daulton, 51, retired after the 1997 season. He now hosts a daily radio show on the 97.5 The Fanatic called “Talkin’ Baseball with Dutch.”
“Darren Daulton has not been feeling well over the past two weeks,” the station said in a statement. “He went to the doctor who discovered two brain tumors and is scheduled for surgery early next week. Our thoughts and prayers are with him and his family at this difficult time. Of course we want to respect his privacy at a time like this, but if you would like to send him get well wishes you may do so at email@example.com.”
Daulton arrived in the big leagues for good in 1985 and spent most of his 14 seasons with the Phillies. He finished his career with the Florida Marlins, who would go onto win the ’97 World Series. In 1993, he hit 24 homers and drove in 105 runs for a Phillies team that lost to the Toronto Blue Jays in the World Series.
Penguins sign Kunitz for three more years
The Pittsburgh Penguins continued a busy offseason Thursday by inking forward Chris Kunitz to a three-year extension.
The deal begins with the 2014-15 season and carries an average annual value of 3.85 million, the team said.
Kunitz, 33, joined the Penguins in 2009. This season, he scored a team-high 22 goals and his 52 points were second on the team.
Earlier this month, the Penguins signed franchise center Evgeni Malkin to a long-term deal.
Dodgers talk trade for Nolasco
The Los Angeles Dodgers are involved in discussions to acquire pitcher Ricky Nolasco from the Miami Marlins, a source told ESPN.com on Wednesday.
Nolasco, 30, is 4-7 with a 3.68 ERA for the Marlins. A native of southern California, he can become a free agent after the season. Miami is reportedly aggressively trying to move him before the July 31 trade deadline.
The Dodgers entered Thursday well behind in the race for a playoff spot, but have won a season-high four straight games.
Dodgers put Hanson on 15-day DL
Los Angeles Angels pitcher Tommy Hanson was placed on the 15-day disabled list Thursday with a right forearm injury.
The right-hander was scratched from his Wednesday start after he felt tightness. He has posted a 5.10 ERA in 47 2/3 innings this season, spanning nine starts. He was acquired over the winter from the Atlanta Braves for reliever Jordan Walden.
It’s uncertain how much time he’ll miss. He was scheduled to have an MRI in Detroit later on Thursday.
Frank to join Kidd’s staff in Brooklyn
Lawrence Frank will join the staff of new Brooklyn Nets’ head coach Jason Kidd as his lead assistant coach, a league source told ESPNNewYork.com.
Frank coached Kidd during most of his time with the Nets from 2003-08. Kidd wanted an experienced assistant to help him transition to head coach, and has actively recruited Frank.
Frank returns to the Nets after being fired by the Detroit Pistons after the regular season. Kidd, 40, retired as a player earlier this month and quickly accepted the Nets head coaching job.
Frank lives with his wife in New Jersey. She had surgery for an undisclosed illness earlier this year and reportedly faces a long recovery.