Updates on Ryan O’Reilly, Johnny Oduya, Eric Gelina, Taylor Pyatt and more in your NHL morning coffee headlines.
THE BUFFALO NEWS: Sabres center Ryan O’Reilly could face NHL discipline related to his recent DUI arrest. League deputy commissioner Bill Daly said O’Reilly “will be referred for evaluation immediately under the NHL/NHLPA Substance Abuse and Behavioral Health Program.” League discipline could take the form of “fines of up to $10,000, suspension from game action or even the cancellation of a player’s entire contract” under Article 18-A of the NHL’s collective bargaining agreement. O’Reilly’s court date is set for Aug. 20 in London, Ont.
SPECTOR’S NOTE: I doubt very much O’Reilly’s contract will be cancelled. Considering this is a first offense and no one was injured, I doubt he’ll face serious penalties from the league. Much will depend, of course, upon the outcome of his court case, in which he could receive a $1,000.00 fine and suspension of his license for a year.
In other Sabres news, the club avoided arbitration with forward Philip Varone, signing him to a one-year, two-way contract. They also re-signed defenseman Mark Pysyk to a two-year, $2.25 million contract.
CBS CHICAGO: Johnny Oduya’s agent, Don Meehan, said the free-agent defenseman won’t be returning with the Chicago Blackhawks.
SPECTOR’S NOTE: This isn’t surprising, as the Blackhawks have limited cap space. The addition of Trevor Daley as part of the return in the recent Patrick Sharp trade with Dallas pretty much spelled the end of Oduya returning with the ‘Hawks.
NJ.COM: The New Jersey Devils avoided salary arbitration with defenseman Eric Gelinas, re-signing him to a two-year, $3.15 million contract. They’re also hoping to do the same with Adam Larsson, perhaps to a long-term extension.
NEW YORK DAILY NEWS: The Rangers re-signed recently acquired winger Emerson Etem to a one-year deal worth $850,500. They also inked free agent forward Oscar Lindberg to a two-year, $1.3 million contract ($650,000 per year).
NBC SPORTS: Veteran NHL forward Taylor Pyatt is ready to hang up his skates after a 13-year NHL career and over 800 games played with the New York Islanders, Buffalo Sabres, Vancouver Canucks, Arizona Coyotes, New York Rangers and Pittsburgh Penguins. He played last season with Geneve Servette of the Swiss-A league.
TSN: Advanced stats can now be used by both sides in NHL arbitration hearings.
STARTRIBUNE.COM: Former Minnesota North Stars will join former Wild players in an alumni game against the Chicago Blackhawks as part of next season’s Stadium series between the Wild and Blackhawks.