Recapping yesterday’s trades, the All-Star rosters are revealed, and more in your NHL morning coffee headlines. 

Recapping yesterday’s trades between the Predators and Blue Jackets, and the Flyers and Kings, plus the Capitals signing Mike Richards, in the NHL Hat Trick.

 Notable NHL Headlines.

THE COLUMBUS DISPATCH/THE TENNESSEAN: Reaction to yesterday’s trade that saw the Columbus Blue Jackets ship center Ryan Johansen to the Nashville Predators for defenseman Seth Jones. While the deal should boost the Predators offensive depth at forward and provide the Blue Jackets with a potential top-two blueliner, the move leaves a big hole at center for the Jackets. It’s also raising some questions in Columbus over the management skills of Jackets GM Jarmo Kekalainen.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Follow this link for my reaction to this deal. 

CSNPHILLY.COM/LOS ANGELES TIMES: Reaction to yesterday trade that saw the Philadelphia flyers deal forward Vincent Lecavalier and defenseman Luke Schenn to the Los Angeles Kings for rookie forward Jordan Weal and a third-round pick. The consensus is this was a crafty salary dump by the Flyers, hammered out by two GMs who used to work together on the Kings, that will also provide the latter with short-term depth for the playoffs.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Follow this link for my take on this trade. 

Center Mike Richards signs with the Capitals.

Center Mike Richards signs with the Capitals.

THE WASHINGTON POST: The Capitals signed free-agent center Mike Richards to a one-year, pro-rated deal worth $1 million, though it’ll count as just $500K against the Capitals salary cap. “Richards also has a court hearing on Jan. 28 for his charge of possessing a controlled substance while entering Canada.” The outcome isn’t expected to limit his ability to play the remainder of this season.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: An affordable gamble for the Capitals. They not only add a short-term replacement for injured third-line center Jay Beagle, but also bring in someone with considerable playoff experience. Despite the decline in his play in recent years and his recent legal issues, Richards could be a decent pickup if he’s motivated to prove he’s still an effective NHL player. 

ESPN.COM:  New York Islanders right wing and pending UFA Kyle Okposo continues to deal with uncertainty over his future with the club.

NHL.COM: The league revealed its rosters for the four divisional teams in the upcoming NHL All-Star Game in Nashville.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Notable omissions include Pittsburgh’s Sidney Crosby, New York Rangers goaltender Henrik Lundqvist and Winnipeg Jets winger Blake Wheeler. But who cares? Other than the revenue it generates for the host city, the NHL All-Star game is a meaningless farce that just gets sillier by the year. The election  of little-used Arizona Coyotes goon John Scott via fan voting (and as a team captain, no less) is truly the nadir for this pointless “showcase” of NHL talent. 

NBC SPORTS: The NHL has suspended Washington Capitals forward Zach Sill for two games for boarding Boston Bruins defenseman Adam McQuaid. To date, there’s no update on McQuaid’s status.

THE ORANGE COUNTY REGISTER: Anaheim Ducks goaltender John Gibson left last night’s game against the Toronto Maple Leafs after suffering a lower-body injury following a collison with Leafs forward Nazem Kadri.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: No word yet on the severity of Gibson’s condition. Losing him for a significant period could be a significant blow for the resurgent Ducks, who’ve climbed back into playoff contention in the Pacific Division.