NHL Morning Coffee Headlines – August 17, 2018

by | Aug 17, 2018 | News, NHL | 24 comments

Updates on Patrik Laine, William Nylander, Ryan Miller and more in your NHL morning coffee headlines.

TSN: Winnipeg Jets winger Patrik Laine stated he’s in no rush to sign a contract extension. Noting he’s entering the final season of his entry-level contract, Laine said he doesn’t mind if talks with the Jets start this summer or next. He indicated his preference is to ink a long-term deal.

Winnipeg Jets winger Patrik Laine isn’t concerned that he hasn’t signed a contract extension yet. (Photo via NHL Images)

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Laine will be a restricted free agent without arbitration rights next summer. That give the Jets plenty of time to work out a new deal with him.

Coming off a 44-goal campaign in 2017-18, the cost of re-signing him will be high. Another 40-plus goal season could push his asking price higher.

The Jets have already invested over $46 million in just 10 players for 2019-20 and Laine, Blake Wheeler, Kyle Connor, Jacob Trouba and Tyler Myers among their notable free agents next summer. They could face a cap squeeze. 

SPORTSNET: Like Laine, Toronto Maple Leafs forward William Nylander also isn’t in any hurry to get a new contract. The difference is, he is currently a restricted free agent.

Nylander said there was no added pressure to get a deal done because someone else recently re-signed, referring to the Detroit Red Wings’ Dylan Larkin, who last week inked a five-year, $30.5-million contract. He also said Leafs general manager Kyle Dubas wanted to take things slow, adding his agent and Dubas are “going back and forth”. 

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Larkin’s new deal might not be having any effect upon how Nylander’s handling this, but I have a feeling his agent could be pointing to that contract as a comparable. 

THE ATHLETIC: Anaheim Ducks goaltender Ryan Miller recently attended a Families Belong Together rally with his family to protest the American government’s decision to separate immigrant parents from their children at the Mexican border. He said his stance is pro-human rights but acknowledged a need for a reasonable immigration and border policy. Miller also feels athletes should speak freely about issues that are important to them.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: If you have a subscription to The Athletic you should check out this piece on Miller. The Ducks netminder provides well-rounded opinions on this topic. Lest anyone thinks he’s simply a Trump hater, Miller also explains that he didn’t agree with everything done under the Obama administration. He stressed the need to become well-informed on contentious issues. 

POSTMEDIA (via CALGARY SUN): Former NHL star Eric Lindros believes education and awareness have evolved in the recognition and treatment and of concussion injuries. However, he feels more can be done to avoid head injuries.

TMZ: Former NHL defenseman Bryan Berard is suing the league for failing to protect him from brain injuries during his 12-year career. Berard was the first-overall pick in the 1995 NHL Draft.

STLTODAY.COM: Former NHL forward Joe Vitale has taken over from Kelly Chase as an NHL in-game analyst covering St. Louis Blues games for KMOX 1120 AM.

SPORTSNET: revealed their NHL preseason broadcasting schedule, kicking off with the Boston Bruins versus the Calgary Flames at Shenzhen, China on Saturday, Sept. 15.

SUN-SENTINEL.COM: “The Florida Panthers will host ‘Legacy Saturdays’ at the BB&T Center throughout the 2018-19 season as part of their 25th anniversary celebrations.”



  1. Note to Ryan Miller: There’s a simple way to ensure illegal immigrant families stay together. Don’t come to America illegally.

    • And you should get a subscription to the Athletic. Looking at your name, which Tribal Counciil you belong to? Do you like vegetables? Guess who’s picking them? Do you like chicken or beef? Guess who’s working in the slaughterhouses? I agree with Miller, people should educate themselves better.

    • And how many millions of dollars in unpaid income and payroll taxes do they account for? How many millions of dollars in unpaid emergency room bills, since illegals don’t give their right name and use emergency rooms as regular doctor visits, do they account for? How much crime is directly attributable to illegal aliens? How many millions of dollars in welfare and food stamps do they account for while the government totally ignores the hundreds of thousands of my fellow veterans who are homeless? Or the untold every day citizens who are homeless, mentally ill and hungry. Oh, as for your cheap shot concerning my name, I have just two things to say. 1) Prove that you are an Indian. (Or, for the whiny politically correct, Native American. Though they, too, are immigrants.) 2) Just because a person doesn’t have an Indian name doesn’t mean he is not an Indian. Oh, and if you are going to base your entire argument on whether or not a person is an Indian, illegal aliens are not Indians, either.

      • Your first comment: harsh, but some truth to it.

        Your second comment: I think you should graciously keep those thoughts to yourself. We are all worse off for enduring them.

      • Sounds like your problem is with the gov… not the people from the south.

      • Paul – Those are good questions. You should find answers before basing opinions and making assumptions, such as: there are many millions spent in ER’s and on food stamps. Assuming the government does banish all the illegal immigrants, do you really believe they will allocate any savings to the homeless Americans? They spend Trillions on the military, why not millions on the vets? because illegal immigrants???

  2. A few things in this article pissed me off:

    Ryan Miller:
    I don’t have a subscription to the Atlantic, so I can’t read the article. I have not commentary on it except his assertion (as relayed by Spector) that athletes should speak out more. Problem is that’s a one way street. An athlete or entertainer says Trump (or Bush or Reagan or …) is a war criminal gets applauded and called out for their “bravery” to take a stand. An athlete or entertainer (or anybody for that matter) who simply says, “Trump isn’t a racist” gets attacked mercilessly, and in some instances fears for their safety.

    Fortunately this is not really the case so much in hockey where they remain mostly quiet, and when they do speak out their reasonably intelligent about it. Again, I can’t read Millers article, so I can’t comment. But I will give Miller credit that he’s embracing an issue, not the hatred of a specific person or political party.

    Eric Lindros:
    Yes, we can do more to take concussions out of the game. We can eliminate checking and fighting. Then we can play with a nerf puck and nerf sticks. Then while NHL players do that, we can go home and watch real hockey on YouTube.

    Here’s the bottom line. If you’re lucky and skilled enough to be a professional athlete, you hit the lottery. You are making millions of dollars every year to play a game that most other people (myself included) have to pay money to play. The league minimum for one year is more than some people make in a lifetime.

    But part of that salary and success comes with risk. If you don’t like that risk, you should pick a simple 9 to 5 job. You’re playing a sport at the highest level in the world with the best and toughest players in the world. That’s how it is with sports.

    And even if you completely removed concussions from the game, there would be some new cause celeb that would take its place. It would be neck injuries or back injuries. “We need to do something about all of the meniscus tears! It’s becoming an epidemic! We should sue the league because they didn’t properly advise us that we might twist our knee skating and crashing into each while skating at top speed.”

    Let’s reverse the thought. If you walk up to a random person and told them, “I have a job for you that is going to pay $4,000,000 per year.”, most people wouldn’t immediately accept it. Most people’s first instincts would be either: this is insanely illegal or this is insanely dangerous. Their assumption rightly so would be that for that much money, there will be significant risk.

    If Lindros wants to see real injury, he should take a trip over to Walter Reed Medical Center. There he will find a bunch of guys who didn’t get paid squat and suffered far more grievous injuries.

    Semper Fi

    • JDBigC

      Re Lindros etc …. contact et al

      Mostly with you… but I’m on the side of completely eliminating headshots

      Yes … paid well (extremely well) and fully aware of what they’re getting in for.

      Just want all deliberate headshots gone

      I’ve been that way all my life … I played hard as a youth and hit hard… I never ever made a body check with my forearm , fist, shoulder to hit someone’s head

      I’m no saint … I did fight a couple of times. Never threw a sucker punch!!

      This is not recently (late ’70’s early 80’s)

      It made me sick to my stomach then when anybody literally went out head hunting.

      Deliberate head contact that knocks a player out should be dealt with severely

      A clean and extremely heavy check that absolutely knocks the wind out of someone … I’m all for… part of the game

      Wilson’s headhunting this spring was not dealt with properly IMO

      To make it clear, I’m not a bleeding heart liberal… I love the heavy game just as much as the speed and finesse part… all hockey to me. Love the game.

      Just eliminate altogether the deliberate hits to the head… stiffer penalties/suspensions with doubled suspension time each occurrence …. if deemed deliberate … 8 game, 16 game , 32 games, lifetime

      Take that out and IMO the game suffers nada

      • Sorry first line should be completely eliminating DELIBERATE headshots

      • Similar thoughts to Pengy here. There are some approaches to hockey that have no place. Deliberate head shots are a great example. I’m similarly not a fan of slew footing when going into the corners. I have way more respect for players that hustle and play honest. It hurts my image of the game to see these cheap plays, and probably a reason why I choose not to watch more.

        Good point by JDBiGC that we can’t go too far to keep injuries out of the game. Good hearty laugh at that meniscus tears comment. Cripes that’s funny. I’m totally fine if people get hurt from good clean hits, crashing into the boards during an epic race for the puck, etc. Just sucks when it’s tied to an intentional elbow, or this weirdly increasing trend where players can’t keep their sticks below eye height.

    • Cannot feel bad for Lindros. He left his feet from day one hitting opponents usually much shorter as well.
      Look at videos from juniors and early years in the NHL- he dished out loads of his own headshots.

      Later on we blame a generation of young players who saw all the glory Scott Stevens received for winning cups and destroying careers. Stevens influenced an entire generation. Then we decided it was not the right way to play

    • It’s not an athletes job to get themselves involved politically. If they take a stance they risk alienating groups of people who are fans. Its not like being a musician. Teams are run with a chain of command similar to the military and the players are the grunts. Some of the star players might be able to get away with taking a certain stance but the everyday players just want to keep the dream alive. If they say the wrong thing they could be traded to the Senators the next day.

  3. Good on miller. Definitely can work on immigration without resorting to kidnapping. I have a ten month old. If my choice was risking separating or risking raising her in poverty surrounded by drugs and gangs as a parent I don’t know what I’d do. Fortunately I am privileged and lucky enough to be from where I’m from

    • @Chrisms

      Compelling argument except for the “kidnapping” part. That’s completely off base and undermines your argument.

      Suppose there was a law that if my family and I got into your house by any means (even breaking in), and once we step foot on your floor, you can have my wife and I removed (arrested), but you can’t do anything about my kids. Are you going to have me and my wife arrested and “kidnap” my kids? If the answer is yes, I hope you have an Xbox One. If the answer is no, which room should my wife, kids, and I take? No matter what your answer is, you should probably stock up your fridge, because my kids can eat.

      Surely you realize that the rules about deporting minors was deliberately created to create this very conundrum and set a political trap for anybody who tries to do anything about immigration.

      • Your last sentences there prove my point. A system was created with foreknowledge that children would be separated from their parents. It’s barbaric and a significant over reaction. Your comparison isn’t at all relevant either.

      • Dude don’t take a stance against chris, his last name is literally contrarian. It doesn’t matter how much logic you throw at him once his mind is made up he would foresake his entire family just so he didn’t have to agree with you.

      • You just can’t stand it when people call out your bologna can you. You’re a bigger sore loser than crosby after that flyers playoff blowout.

      • Well, now, there’s a reason to hear Crosby speak out of turn 🙂

  4. For me its simply come in legally and best of luck in your future.
    No I don’t agree with children being separated from their parents but as it is today that’s an inherent risk one is taking to cross the border illegally.
    When I say for me it’s simple, means I have no idea of what it is like to live in a poverty stricken Nation or how if feels to be signaled out simply because of how I look, nor do I know the feeling of desperation and wanting something better at all cost.

    • Well said Caper

  5. let’s stick to the hockey talk

    • Do you think a Canadian player would ever have his kids taken from him playing in the us due to a visa issue? 😝

      • If he was placed in a detention center, maybe, because not all detention centers are equipped to handle kids. We have the same situation here with respect to detention centers. Some are innocuous – such as converted motels with secure fencing – others are more like gaols, which is where those who arrive sans ID and papers go until their positive identity can be established. Who knows who might try and slip into the country through those means. If they have children with them, those children would be placed in a separate facility.

      • Gee. Thanks George. My poor attempt of a joke is now completely dead