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Daily Cupcakes - July 8th

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First up, some Semyon Varlamov love. I want to thank the Caps fan, vtcapsfan9, for providing us so much insight, and pictures, it's appreciated.

Avalanche general manager Greg Sherman said Thursday that he broached the possibility of a Varlamov trade with Capitals counterpart George McPhee after Washington was eliminated by Tampa Bay in the second round of the playoffs.

"Our plan was to bring in a young and upcoming player that could carry the load as a starting goaltender," Sherman said. "We feel fortunate that we did not have to use a young, core player off our current roster in order to acquire a player such as Semyon."

Sherman said he had more discussions with McPhee at the June 24-25 draft, "but that did not bear fruit."

Varlamov was the player the team targeted early after finishing its most disappointing season since moving to Denver in 1995. Adding the 34-year-old Giguere, who won the Stanley Cup with Anaheim four years ago, gives the club insurance for a goaltender who dealt with nagging injuries in three seasons with the Capitals.

"We wanted to surround Semyon in an environment where he could be successful and we wanted to bring in a veteran presence, a calming presence for him," Sherman said. "We feel confident having a former Stanley Cup and Conn Smythe winner as his backup, who welcomes that role."

There have , allegedly, supposedly, perhaps, maybe... been a bad boy who used to be in the NHL lately. Matthew Barnaby being the first one.

Former NHL forward and ESPN analyst Matthew Barnaby was ordered Wednesday to complete 500 hours of community service to have charges dropped stemming from an argument he had with his estranged wife in May.

NBC Chicago talks about arbitration... it does not seem promising. Actually, sounds rather painful. The emphasis is mine.

Arbitration is kind of the nuclear option. Most teams and players will do anything to avoid actually entering a hearing. That's because the hearing itself is something akin to The Machine from "Princess Bride". While the player's agent does his best to make his client out to be the lovechild of Bobby Orr and Wayne Gretzky, with some Cam Neely thrown in for toughness (there's an image), the team will counter that by trying to rip the player to shreds to the point that you'd probably wonder why the team even still wants the player. Every player who has come out of a hearing has been affected by it.

***author's note: I'm going to be using random pics of Avalanche players, past and present, throughout the summer. Hope you enjoy.***