NHL Morning Coffee Headlines – July 21, 2018

by | Jul 21, 2018 | News, NHL | 4 comments

Wild avoid arbitration with Matt Dumba, updates on Jacob Trouba and Dylan Larkin plus the latest notable contract signings in your NHL morning coffee headlines.

Minnesota Wild re-sign defenseman Matt Dumba to a five-year contract (Photo via NHL Images).

THE ATHLETIC’s Michael Russo cites Sportsnet’s Elliotte Friedman reporting the Minnesota Wild have avoided salary arbitration with defenseman Matt Dumba, signing him to a five-year, $30-million contract. The annual average value is $6 million.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: As per Cap Friendly, Dumba is completing a two-year contract worth $5.1 million. His new deal is worth more in its first season that the entirety of his previous one. 

This was Wild general manager Paul Fenton’s first major contract signing since taking over the job in May. Based on Dumba’s breakout performance last season (50 points in 82 games), Fenton apparently believes the 23-year-old has arrived as a productive offensive blueliner.

Despite Dumba’s obvious offensive skills, his defensive play has raised concern in the past. That explains the early criticism of this deal. If he improves over time in his own zone, however, those critics could find his new contract worthwhile. 

Dumba’s new contract will push the Wild’s projected cap payroll to over $75.5 million  for 2018-19. That won’t leave much for free-agent winger Jason Zucker, whose arbitration hearing is July 28. 

WINNIPEG FREE PRESS: The arbitration hearing for Jets defenseman Jacob Trouba was held on Friday. He and the club now await the arbiter’s decision on a one-year contract, which is expected on Sunday. The Jets reportedly sought $4 million while the Trouba camp wanted $7 million. 

SPECTOR’S NOTE: It’s still possible for the two sides to reach an agreement on a contract before the arbiter’s ruling. In this case, however, that might not happen. I’ll have more on Trouba’s status later this morning in the Rumors section. 

MLIVE.COM: The Detroit Red Wings are working toward a new, long-term contract with forward Dylan Larkin. The Wings reportedly seek a five-year deal while Larkin wants six years. It’s expected the annual average value will be in the $6-million range.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Doesn’t sound like the two sides are very apart here. Larkin’s new contract could be announced within the next several weeks. 

TSN: The Vancouver Canucks avoided arbitration with defenseman Troy Stecher, inking him to a two-year contract worth an annual average value of $2.325 million. 

CALGARY SUN: The Flames appear headed to arbitration Monday with defenseman Brett Kulak after he passed unclaimed through waivers on Friday. 



  1. Fair contract in Dumba

    Staring contest/showdown in the Trouba/Chevy case

    I would think sense should have at least another reach out offer today B4 Arb decision

    However if Trouba’s camp think they argued much more strongly in the hearing … they’ll refuse any offer

    …. loses out in long term contract tho

    • That’s the question Pengy; does Trouba want a long term contract with the Jets? I hope so, but not 100% sold on it.

  2. Capfreindly shows Minn at $73,854,424 with 24 players signed & on that roster not counting Zucker. 2 forwards will be sent down or trades are coming to be roster compliant the day before the season starts at 23. I’m removing Rau & Kunin from that 23 man roster unless injuries or again a trade happens. That free’s up another 1.625 giving Min 7.270,576 in cap space to sign Zucker, more than enough.

    The hardest part of learning to play D in the NHL is your defensive role. Dumba has improved significantly defensively the last 2 years. He even killed penalties last season. In 310 NHL regular season games, he sits +39. He turns 24 in 4 days so he won’t be fully developed at the NHL level until after the completion of next season.

    • Min’s roster is solid, it has great depth of solid prospects very close to NHL ready & it should battle the likes of Nas, Win & StL, curious to see how that all shakes out, you would assume Nas & Win are better & the upgrades & return of Fabbri may push Min down but they can be far better than they played last season.

      This is a great team but injuries created slumps for Coyle & Niederreiter & Koivu struggled offensively but certainly not due to injury or opportunity, at 35 father time may be catching up. This may be the strongest division to play in but in fairness, they are all getting tough. The easiest is the Atlantic. 3 solid teams & Flo a very good team at the top but Mon, Ott, Buf & Det are 4 of the worst teams in the NHL.

      Parise, Staal, Niederreiter.
      Zucker, Koivu, Granlund.
      Greenway, Eriksson-Ek, Coyle.
      Foligno, Fehr, Brown.
      Spare. Hendricks.