NHL Morning Coffee Headlines – July 3, 2018

by | Jul 3, 2018 | News, NHL | 12 comments

Thornton and Hertl re-signing with Sharks among latest notable signings. Details and more in your NHL morning coffee headlines.

NBC SPORTS: The San Jose Sharks yesterday re-signed center Joe Thornton to a one-year, $5-million contract and forward Tomas Hertl to a four-year deal.

The Beard is back, as Joe Thornton signs a one-year deal with the San Jose Sharks (Photo via NHL Images)

SPECTOR’S NOTE: As per Cap Friendly, Thornton’s deal doesn’t contain any bonuses. It’s a straightforward $5 million. His salary is a significant drop from last season’s $8 million ($6.75 million base plus bonuses) but unsurprising given his age (39), recent knee surgeries and his willingness to stay in San Jose.

Cap Friendly indicates Hertl’s new deal is worth an annual average value of $5.625 million, a big raise over his previous salary of $3 million annually. It’s a shorter term than perhaps he would’ve preferred, but given his injury history, it’s understandable why the Sharks were reluctant to invest in a lengthier deal.

PITTSBURGH POST-GAZETTE: Joe Starkey scolds Penguins general manager Jim Rutherford for suggesting the reason the Columbus Blue Jackets, former team of new Penguins defenseman Jack Johnson, scratched the blueliner was for reasons other than on-ice performance.

Rutherford’s remarks, and those of Johnson expressing his happiness over joining a team with a winning culture, prompted angry rebuttals from Blue Jackets head coach John Tortorella and GM Jarmo Kekalainen. Johnson claimed he meant no offense by his comments and apologized to the Jackets organization.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Starkey also chided Tortorella for not being the bigger man in this situation and ignoring those remarks. If anything, this back-and-forth will only stoke the ongoing rivalry between the two clubs. 

NEW YORK DAILY NEWS: Rangers owner James Dolan denied reports claiming he’s looking to sell the club and his other sports franchises.

LOS ANGELES TIMES: Former Kings defenseman Slava Voynov was granted a dismissal of his misdemeanor domestic abuse conviction, potentially paving the way for his return to the NHL. He can now request a reinstatement hearing with league commissioner Gary Bettman.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Even if Bettman grants Voynov’s reinstatement, the blueliner could have a difficult time landing with a new NHL club. While some general managers could be interested in his on-ice skills, the baggage from his domestic assault conviction could be a potential public-relations nightmare. 

THE TENNESSEAN: The head district attorney handling a criminal charge of domestic assault leveled at Nashville Predators forward Austin Watson has recused herself because of her upcoming wedding to Gerry Helper, the team’s senior vice president and senior adviser.

ORANGE COUNTY REGISTER: The Anaheim Ducks yesterday signed UFA winger Carter Rowney to a three-year deal worth $3.4 million.

NHL.COM: The Minnesota Wild signed forward J.T. Brown to a two-year, $1.375-million deal. 

NHL.COM: The Tampa Bay Lightning re-signed defenseman Slater Koekkoek to a one-year, $865K contract.

NEWSDAY: The New York Islanders signed forward Tom Kuhnhackl to a one-year, $650K deal.

NHL.COM: The Nashville Predators signed forward Zac Rinaldo to a one-year, two-way contract worth $650K at the NHL level. 



  1. Joe. Just PLEASE lose the Smith’s Brothers/Swamp People beard! That alone will remove 5 lbs to help your skating.

    • Hair hair!

      • Terrible joke but no emoji. There goes the hockey talks for another 6 months.

      • Well I am a relatively new father and my daughter is a bit to young to get my dad jokes… so I’m honing my skills on you suckers.

    • Ha ha hahahahaha well said . He could have birds living in that thing like peter griffin did

  2. Rutherford and Johnson could have chosen their words slightly better but meant no offense to Columbus.

    The reaction by Columbus revealed MASSIVE insecurity by their management team and was absurdly unprofessional.

    I’ll reuse my analogy…Torts and Jarmo are like fat chicks who get upset when someone calls them chubby.

    The ONLY franchise to never win a playoff series and only 6 playoff wins total in 18 years. That is NOT a winning culture.

    I understand where such comments hurt their efforts to build such a culture, but NOWHERE nearly as much as their coach launching YET ANOTHER tirade or their GM slagging a player who just left his team (other players notice this stuff) hurts those efforts.

    Their best player wants out. Their star goalie wants max money or he wants out.

    Jarmo, Torts and JD are all in the final year of their contracts. So, that they would react that way to Johnson and Rutherford’s words is understandable, but inside their own heads, not behaving so unprofessionally in public.

    Never let ’em see you sweat, guys. You made a mountain out of an innocent molehill and exposed your own desperation.

    The 8 gallons a day of hand sanitizer is going to Starkey’s brain if he sees these as equal “offenses”.

    • Johnson apologised immediately for his remarks. He didn’t mean them the way they came out. Jarmo didn’t go insane just rebutted. Torts did what Torts does.

      No point wasting your breath about a doorknob like Torts.

      • I can’t remember Jarmo’s exact quote, but he questioned Johnson as a player. It was a quote no player would want to read from their ex-GM.

        Johnson’s quote is not one you want from an ex-player, no doubt, but he’s one individual on likely his final contract.

        Jarmo represents a franchise. Bad look.

        One more thing, though…Tort’s “he must be a (bleeping) magician” regarding Rutherford?

        Jimmy did trade Scuderi for Daley, so…he might be on to something.

        I might have to start calling GMJU “The Magician”.

      • Flint?

  3. The NHL will reinstate Voyonov at some point this season if not for the start of the year, LA would be smart to resign him if not they will trade his rights & Voyonov will be signed & playing in the NHL next season.

    He can play on my team anytime. He made a mistake & paid the price for poor decisions. Voyonov was LA’s #2 Dman behind Doughty when he had to leave the NHL.

    • Lamoriello has a history of bringing in players with questionable backgrounds, so look for Voynov to be in an Islanders jersey on opening night

  4. Voyonov has baggage and is a PR nightmare. He’ll play in Ottawa lol … though, seriously. He has enough skill that at least 2-3 GMs will look hard.