NHL Morning Coffee Headlines – July 11, 2019
Matt Cullen announced his retirement, the Vancouver Canucks sign Micheal Ferland, and more in today’s NHL morning coffee headlines.
TRIBLIVE.COM: After 1,516 games and three Stanley Cup championships, center Matt Cullen yesterday announced his retirement. The 42-year-old spent 21 seasons in the NHL with eight teams. He began his career in 1997-98 with the Anaheim Mighty Ducks and moved on to the Florida Panthers, Carolina Hurricanes, New York Rangers, Ottawa Senators, Minnesota Wild, Nashville Predators, and Pittsburgh Penguins. He won his first Cup with the Hurricanes and two with the Penguins.
SPECTOR’S NOTE: Best wishes to Cullen and his family in their future endeavours. He was a well-respected, hardworking checking forward and mentor to his younger teammates as his career progressed.
Cullen sits second to Chris Chelios for most games played by an American-born player. He tallied 266 goals and 731 points, as well as 58 points in 132 playoff contests. Check out the Penguins’ video tribute to Cullen.
NBC SPORTS: With Cullen’s retirement, Boston Bruins captain Zdeno Chara becomes the NHL’s oldest active player. Chara turned 42 on March 18 and is 136 days younger than Cullen.
TSN: The Vancouver Canucks yesterday signed free-agent winger Micheal Ferland to a four-year, $14-million contract. The annual average value is $3.5 milion.
SPECTOR’S NOTE: The Canucks got Ferland at a bargain. Earlier this year, he was reportedly seeking a contract comparable to Washington’s Tom Wilson. The 27-year-old winger is a feisty forward coming off back-to-back 40-point campaigns.
Ferland’s injury history, however, could be a problem. He struggled to return to form after suffering a concussion early last season. If he can stay reasonably healthy he should be a good addition to the young Canucks.
The Ferland signing leaves the Canucks squeezed for sufficient salary-cap space to re-sign Brock Boeser and Nikolay Goldobin. I’ll have more on that later this morning in the Rumor Mill.
LOS ANGELES TIMES: The Kings avoided salary arbitration with forward Alex Iafallo, re-signing him to a two-year contract worth over $2.4 million annually.
THE SCORE: In a recent interview, former Toronto Maple Leafs winger Joffrey Lupul talked injuries, loss of confidence, and stress that brought about the end of his playing career. The Leafs placed Lupul on long-term injury reserve before the 2016-17 season and would later buy out the remainder of his contract. At the time, Lupul claimed he hadn’t failed his physical and accused the Leafs of cheating, though he subsequently retracted those comments and apologized. He now admits his injury woes contributed to the decline of his play, which also affected his confidence.
MONTREAL GAZETTE: Former Canadiens defenseman and assistant coach J.J. Daigneault is the new head coach of the QMJHL’s Halifax Mooseheads.
NEWSOBSERVER.COM: Ryan Warsofsky was named the new head coach of the Charlotte Checkers, the AHL affiliate of the Carolina Hurricanes.