NHL Morning Coffee Headlines – June 24, 2019

by | Jun 24, 2019 | News, NHL | 14 comments

The Golden Knights to re-sign William Karlsson, the NHL and NHLPA to stage another World Cup of Hockey, and more in today’s NHL morning coffee headlines. 

TSN: The Vegas Golden Knights will re-sign William Karlsson to a new contract this week. It’s expected the 26-year-old center’s new contract will be eight years with an annual average value of $5.9 million. Karlsson is slated to become a restricted free agent on July 1. 

The Vegas Golden Knights re-sign William Karlsson to an eight-year contract extension (Photo via NHL Images)

SPECTOR’S NOTE: TSN’s Pierre LeBrun reports it was the contract term – eight years – that meant more to Karlsson than the money. He loves living and playing in Las Vegas and didn’t want to leave.

It’s a bit of a gamble by the Golden Knights, as Karlsson will be 34 when this deal expires and his performance could significantly decline in the final years of this contract. Nevertheless, it’s a decent cap hit, one that could be worthwhile if he keeps putting up the numbers (24 goals, 56 points) he did this season.

LAS VEGAS REVIEW-JOURNAL: David Schoen reports Golden Knights general manager Kelly McCrimmon isn’t concerned about his club sitting approximately $7.9 million over the $81.5-million salary cap for 2019-20.

While they failed to find any takers for all-but-retired David Clarkson’s contract ($5.25-million cap hit), defenseman Colin Miller ($3.875 million) reportedly remains on the trade block. Forwards Curtis McKenzie ($750,000) and Valentin Zykov ($675,000) could be placed on waivers. 

“We’ve talked to teams all along,” McCrimmon said of potential trades. “I think all 31 teams have done that, and we’ll continue to do that. That’s just part of our business.”

SPECTOR’S NOTE: The Golden Knights can sit over the cap by 10 percent during the off-season. They can also place Clarkson on long-term injury reserve if they can’t find any takers for that contract. Trading another player, however, appears more likely and could go down this week. 

CBC.CA: The NHL and NHL Players Association are in favor of rebooting the World Cup of Hockey and staging it every four years. The PA would also like to participate in the Winter Olympics but the league remains non-committal. 

SPECTOR’S NOTE: The Olympic participation issue could become a stumbling block during the next round of formal collective bargaining between the two sides. However, I don’t consider this as a hill the PA wants to die on. They’re more concerned over escrow payments. 

NHL.COM: The St. Louis Blues re-signed Jordan Nolan to a one-year, two-way contract worth $700K at the NHL level. 

SPORTSNET: Ryan Dixon caught up with Patrik Stefan, the first overall pick in the 1999 NHL Draft. 


  1. I may be way off in my suspicions – probably am (lol) – but I can’t help getting the feeling that we have entered what may go down in NHL history as “the fleece era.” By that I mean, most pundits (and most of us in these pages) really thought there would be a flurry of deals during the draft due to the preponderance of teams up tight against the cap (or well over it). The fact that it didn’t happen points to those teams which have the space to take on, not just the Clarkson-type albatroses, but good mid-range players who some teams HAVE to move in order to clear necessary space to sign what they consider key RFAs/UFAs of their own, are saying a firm “no” to the demands (likely in the form of picks and prospects) – Jim Benning excepted. THAT was a real head-scratcher. Maybe Chiarelli was already whispering in his ear.

    • George, we will see what these gm’s do but I would think if I am in charge of a team with cap space I would not make it easy on the teams that are cap strapped….I’d squeeze real hard and learn to say no often!

      • I truly believe that that is exactly what we’re seeing now. Like it or not Leafs fans, but Dubas got squeezed into a tight corner thanks to the Marleau contract and, for the second year in a row, won’t have a 1st round pick in 2020. Some are saying Poile had to settle for less than market value for Subban – albeit others disagree, saying losing his “personality” was a plus. Time will tell on that one. Only Jim Benning – so far – seems to be bucking the trend.

        I just hope Dorion sticks to his guns if planning to bolster his young line-up with a veteran or two through trade by not giving up anything of great consequence. Let those who loaded up their rosters sweat some more – be patient – and as the season draws closer and they’re STILL up against or over the cap with RFAs/UFAs of their own still to sign, the bargains will begin in earnest. Then it’s fleece time big time.

  2. George , you seem to forget Dorion has already made his bad decisions. Now he is in charge of trying to fix it. Toronto was in 6th place Ottawa was in 30th and then 31st under Dorion. This after inheriting a team that was as they say 1 goal from the finals. Dubas has been on the job 1 year . If Dubas got fleeced, What would you call the Duchene trade. His so called prospects are just that. He gives up star players to get draft picks to try to draft players like he had. And Turris and Karlsson have both been hurt. So the only way he new what he was doing is if he knew they were damaged goods. I guess Dubas could say the girlfriends were fighting. That way everything would be justified. Love always

    • Vinnie, are we back to comparing the records of the Leafs and Senators again? I’ve been critical of many of the Sens moves in recent years, and have been especially critical of Melnyk. But in the end Dorion had little choice but to deal Karlsson, Stone and Duchene. As you pointed out, they were close to last with all 3 two seasons back and well on their way to dead last this past season with the last two, neither of whom were going to re-sign in Ottawa anyway.

      When the dust settled, albeit in an imperfect world, he didn’t fare too badly all things considered getting serviceable C Chris Tierny, D Dylan DeMelo, U of Michigan C prospect Josh Norris, Rudolfs Balcers, SJ’s 2nd round pick this past draft and their 1st in 2020 thanks to the Karlsson re-signing, and from Vegas they got top D prospect Brannstrom and their 2020 2nd round pick, and from Columbus prospects Vitaly Abramov and Jonathan Davidsson, their 1st round pick this past draft and, if Duchene re-signs in Columbus, their 1st round pick next season.

      We can argue until the cows come home as to how all that will shake out down the line – neither of us has any clue – it is what it is. Hardly perfect but infinitely better than what Dubas had to give up in order for someone to take Marleau (and I’m not alone in that opinion in these threads). As for Karlsson and Turris being “damaged goods” show me a link that reveals that.

      • At least we are talking again, haha. Just like to point out that there is alot more similarities between the franchises than you like to admit. When you talk about sens prospects they are up and coming. Leafs prospects its, well just because they win in the minors don’t mean anything. Ottawa has made lots of mistakes, I still think you have to be a relative of Dorion, the way you stick up for him. We are still celebrating the dynasty his Dad helped build in Toronto

      • Vinnie, you can’t blame him for his dad’s errors – as for sticking up for him, I just look at it as trying to make the best of a bad situation. IF Melnyk ever does sell – say, to a Laliberté – chances are the new owner will want to clean house at the first opportunity – top to bottom. But that’s a big IF – and if my uncle had different equipment he’d be my aunt. 🙂

    • I would say Dorion got fleeced by his owner.

      • Hard to feel sorry for them when they say how bad Toronto has been. I guess everyone forgets the Leafs had Harold Ballard. Like I said they could blame the girlfriends if it falls apart in Toronto.

      • As I’ve tried to point out before, BCLeafFan, had Karlsson, Stone and Duchene all accepted Dorion’s offers – even under a different, stay-out-of-the-scene owner who allowed him to spend what was “necessary” – they’d have 4 players (counting Ryan) accounting for in excess of $35 million off the cap. With guys like Chabot, White, Brannstrom, Formenton, Batherson, Tkachuk etc., all looking for big pay raises right in the midst of those terms. And then we’d be talking about them in the same we’re discussing top-heavy cap teams with no space now.

        What we’re beginning to see – as salaries rise faster than the hard cap – is a hardening of the lines as GMs/ownership realize you can’t build a winner by paying your top 4 or 5 guys a 40% (+ in some cases) portion of the cap.

        You can bet the NHLPA can see the writing on the wall as well and that could lead to a bitter bargaining negotiation of the next CBA, with either a strike or lock-out in the cards.

        I hope I’m reading this wrong – but the same thing, in a way, happened in recent years with mainstream TV where top stars priced themselves out of the equation leading to the current plethora of “reality” shows which are far less costly to produce.

  3. Vegas and Winnipeg have the same issue; players just don’t want to leave and sign for less to stay. or is it they both feel like crap in the morning.

  4. I reiterate that Rutherford should try to “help” Vegas with their cap problems by offering Simon, Ruhwedel and a pick for Haula and Miller…and then trading Schultz for a pick to create the cap room.

    Miller is younger and has term for less than Schultz was making. Haula would be a great 3C and might be one of the few centers who could revive Hornqvist’s game with his speed.

    Vegas gets two serviceable and cheap players and cap relief, plus a pick.

  5. It’s funny how some people are using the word fleeced as it pertains to deals and their “ lopsided” appearance. The reality is, when you’re trying to get something someone else also values there’s always going to be a discrepancy of the amount valued. So the seller is obliged to over value that asset. In some cases, the buyers are pressured to make a move and 9 times out of ten, humans make a bad choice/move when pressured.

    We often weigh in on transactions and instantly criticize them if it’s less than the group’s perceived value for that trade without full knowledge of the workings behind the final deal. Who’s to say a GM hasn’t made a trade proposal similar to the laughable ones fans post and receive the same reaction.

    In the business world we are paid for results and hope to achieve them cost effectively. Sometimes you have to bite the bullet or pull the trigger to accept the lesser evil. If a GM is consistently making bad moves, or is inconsistent they are bad at the their job.

    • Solid post – I retract my facetious use of the word “fleeced.”
      George’s summary of the Ottawa situation is accurate and may end up being the TSN turning point for the franchise.