The Chicago Blackhawks agreed to a one-year deal with Marty Turco on Monday, settling on a veteran goaltender to replace Stanley Cup hero Antti Niemi.
General Manager Stan Bowman said the team expects "immediate" contributions from the 34-year-old Turco, who played nine seasons with the Dallas Stars. He is a three-time All Star. Terms were not disclosed.
The 26-year-old Niemi helped the Blackhawks win the Stanley Cup this past season after earning $826,875 as a rookie. He was awarded a $2.75-million salary for next season by an arbitrator last week, putting the Blackhawks in a tough spot.
Bowman declined to say whether the team could have squeezed Niemi's award under the NHL's salary cap, set at $59.4 million next season. "The salary cap has been talked about too much," Bowman said.
Bowman said he made several attempts to sign Niemi to a multiyear contract before the goalie's case went to arbitration.
Niemi, a Finn who signed with the Blackhawks in May 2008, becomes an unrestricted free agent. He played all but one period of the Blackhawks' postseason run to the championship, going 16-6 with a 2.63 goals-against average, .910 save percentage and two shutouts.
Niemi is the eighth player to leave the Blackhawks since the team won its first Stanley Cup in 49 years, joining Andrew Ladd, Ben Eager, Dustin Byfuglien, Brent Sopel, Adam Burish, Colin Fraser and Kris Versteeg.
In his NHL career, Turco is 262-154-63 in 509 regular-season games with a 2.31 goals-against average and 40 shutouts. Last season, he went 22-20-11 with a 2.72 GAA, .913 save percentage and four shutouts.
The 5-foot-11 native of Sault Ste-Marie, Ontario, who turns 35 this month, is 21-26 with a 2.17 goals-against average in 47 playoffs games.
Days after trading James Wisniewski to the New York Islanders, the Ducks signed 6-foot-6 defenseman Andy Sutton to a two-year contract that will pay him $2 million this season and $2.25 million in 2011-12.
Sutton, 35, appeared in 72 games with the New York Islanders and Ottawa senators last season, collecting five goals and 13 points. He finished the regular season ranked second among all NHL players with 204 blocked shots and eighth among NHL defensemen with 197 hits.
After losing Scott Niedermayer to retirement, the Ducks also were looking for a defenseman who could play a lot of minutes, and Sutton averaged 23:01 minutes of ice time during the 2010 playoffs with the Senators and played 20-or-more minutes 45 times during the regular season.
The Buffalo Sabres waived left wing Tim Kennedy four days after he was awarded a one-year, $1-million contract in arbitration.
Helio Castroneves was fined $60,000 and put on probation for the rest of the season after making contact with race officials following the July 25 race at Edmonton, Canada. IndyCar officials met the three-time Indianapolis 500 winner to discuss his actions and issue the penalties.
Castroneves was black-flagged for blocking Penske Racing teammate Will Power on the final restart. Castroneves crossed the finish line first, but Scott Dixon was awarded the win after the penalty was enforced, dropping Castroneves to 10th.
An irate Castroneves was penalized for refusing to follow the direction of officials and unsportsmanlike conduct when he engaged in physical contact with two officials on pit lane after the conclusion of the race.
NASCAR team owner Jack Roush's condition has been upgraded to fair as he recovers from last week's plane crash in Wisconsin. The 68-year-old Roush is at the Mayo Clinic in Minnesota. His team said he would remain there indefinitely to treat facial injuries.
Ferrari will face motor sport's world governing body in a disciplinary hearing in September after it was found guilty of breaking team order rules at last month's German Grand Prix.
FIA said the World Motor Sport Council hearing will be chaired by Nick Craw, its deputy president for sport, in Paris on Sept. 8.
Ferrari has already been fined $100,000 after Brazilian driver Felipe Massa appeared to let teammate and two-time world champion Fernando Alonso of Spain pass him to win the race on July 25.
The WMSC has the power to exclude Ferrari from the championship, although that is highly unlikely.
Massa led for 49 of 67 laps before he was passed by Alonso following Ferrari radio messages.
Big Ten Conference Commissioner Jim Delany expects the conference to hold a championship game next season, when Nebraska joins and brings the league to 12 teams. He also says teams will likely play nine conference games instead of eight in the future to help preserve rivalries.
Kentucky junior guard Darnell Dodson will not play for the Wildcats this season, according to Coach John Calipari. Calipari posted a message on his Facebook page saying Dodson remains academically eligible, and can return to practice with the team "if he meets our standards."