NHL Morning Coffee Headlines – July 23, 2018

by | Jul 23, 2018 | News, NHL | 4 comments

Jacob Trouba award one-year contract, Jets avoid arbitration with Brandon Tanev, plus updates on Brandon Montour, Jason Zucker and more in your NHL morning coffee headlines.

WINNIPEG FREE PRESS: An arbitrator awarded Winnipeg Jets defenseman Jacob Trouba a one-year, $5.5-million contract. Given the apparent divide and rocky history of contract negotiations between Trouba and Jets management, this deal could merely delay the inevitable breakup between the two sides.

An arbitrator awarded a one-year contract to Winnipeg Jets defenseman Jacob Trouba on Sunday (Photo via NHL Images).

SPECTOR’S NOTE: The Trouba camp obviously sought much more than the Jets are willing to pay for his services. There was reportedly a three-million divide between the two sides entering arbitration, with Trouba seeking $7 million and the Jets proposing $4 million.

Next summer, Trouba will be once again be a restricted free agent with arbitration rights but he’ll also be a year away from unrestricted free agent status. The Jets could surprise us by trading Trouba before next February’s NHL trade deadline but I believe they’ll hang onto him as they attempt to build upon last season’s franchise-best performance. 

Three outcomes are possible. One is Trouba has a career-best season that entices the Jets to meet his asking price on a long-term deal. Another is they’ll once again go through arbitration where he’ll get another one-year deal leading to his eventual departure the following year as a UFA. The third is they’ll trade him next summer rather than risk losing him for nothing to the 2020 free-agent market.

TSN: Speaking of the Jets, they avoided arbitration with defenseman Brandon Tanev by signing him to a one-year, $1.15-million contract.

SPORTSNET’s Elliotte Friedman reports Anaheim Ducks defenseman Brandon Montour seeks a one-year, $4.75-million contract via arbitration while the club seeks a two-year deal worth an annual average value of $1.5 million. Ducks general manager Bob Murray said the two sides are working on a bridge deal.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Montour’s hearing is slated for tomorrow in Toronto. Perhaps the two sides will reach agreement on a two-year deal worth around $3.5-million per season. 

THE ATHLETIC: A sizable gap remains between the Minnesota Wild and winger Jason Zucker with his July 28th arbitration hearing looming. Zucker reportedly seeks well over $6 million annually while the Wild are offering between $5.25 – $5.75 million. No-trade protection is also a sticking point. Zucker’s agent will meet with Wild GM Paul Fenton in Minnesota on Wednesday in hopes of ending the deadlock. 

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Zucker’s adamant that he wants to stay in Minnesota. Perhaps one way around this is if Fenton agrees to a full no-trade provided Zucker accepts $5.75 million per season. 

CTV NEW MONTREAL: Surete du Quebec are investigating alleged threats by a member of Hell’s Angels against former Montreal Canadiens defenseman Guy Lapointe and his son. Lapointe won six Stanley Cups with the Canadiens in the 1970s and is a member of the Hockey Hall of Fame. His son is also a member of Surete du Quebec. 



  1. considering the tough negotations that Trouba has had with the Jets with his contracts, don’t you get the feeling that he doesn’t want to stay there long term ? First, it was his playing time in his previous contract negotiations, now who knows, on why he won’t resign long-term. I think this upcoming season will be his last in Winnipeg, and will force a trade next summer

  2. 3.5 seems a little high for a guy that’s only played one full NHL season. Montour will be lucky to get 2.5.

    • Dee

      $3M in my mind fair — I like his style of play and see a great upside with him.

      Note: The An/Montour offer/ask situation is proportionately worse than the Winn/Trouba case was. Ana offering more than 1/3rd less than total ask and want to pay that total for two years service.

      My gut senses that they come to an arrangement pre-arb hearing

      Anything close (either side of $3M) for 2 years— fair IMO

  3. Winnipeg playing hard ball with Trouba only has one ending. Goodbye Trouba!
    The more I think of Trouba situation the more a lean to supporting Jacob. If he believes that Winnipeg has not been fair to him in negotiation, which I concur, then he’ll be gone on first opportunity.
    Trouba, isn’t a $4.5m per season dman, He is better then the $5.5 the jets are paying Myers. He (Trouba) is arguably Winnipeg number 1 dman, some would say that belongs to big Buff and his $7.6m contract. Then it’s reasonable that Trouba salary would be between $5.5 – $7.6 for the Winnipeg Jets. Trouba was awarded $5.5 matching that of Myers.
    Hard to believe the Jets value Trouba at $4.5 if they do they can walk away from the awarded amount within 48hrs; they won’t be doing that.
    How does Trouba not feel insulted with a low ball offer of $4.5? Because it a negotiation tactic? Wouldn’t work for me, if the Jets truly thought Jacob value was $5.5m per, then why not make that offer of that amount, do they not have faith in the arbitrator to make an inform decision and assume the arbitrator will automatically go to the middle, like the awarded amount of $5.5
    I feel the low ball offer of $4.5 can only be harmful in negotiations with Trouba who one wonders if he truly wants to be in Winnipeg, if he is wavering the $4.5 offer does nothing to make him want to stay.
    They cannot talk contract until January 1/19 this will give Winnipeg an opportunity to heal the hurt feelings or gauge what his interest are, I suspect he’ll finish this season in Winnipeg but not so sure he’ll be on the opening day roster in October 2019