NHL Morning Coffee Headlines – July 17, 2021

by | Jul 17, 2021 | News, NHL | 29 comments

Gabriel Landeskog seeks a big payday, Islanders trade Nick Leddy to the Red Wings, plus the latest on Alex Edler, Erik Haula and more in today’s NHL morning coffee headlines.

YAHOO! SPORTS: cites St. Louis-based NHL insider Andy Strickland reporting Colorado Avalanche captain Gabriel Landeskog seeks a big raise on his next contract. Slated to become an unrestricted free agent on July 28, the 28-year-old left-winger could be asking for an annual average value of $9 million to $10 million on the open market.

Colorado Avalanche winger Gabriel Landeskog (NHL Images).

Landeskog is willing to give the Avalanche a hometown discount. However, they’ll have to come up from their offer of between $5 million to $6 million on an eight-year deal.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Strickland reported the Avalanche also made offers of four years ($6.5 million) and five years ($7 million). He indicated Landeskog would be interested in signing with the Florida Panthers, Tampa Bay Lightning, Vegas Golden Knights, Toronto Maple Leafs and New York Islanders if a deal cannot be worked out with the Avs.

As always, I don’t fault any player for seeking the best contract they can get as a free agent. Landeskog is a terrific first-line left-winger and a key part of the Avalanche roster.

However, I doubt Landeskog will find many offers between $9 million and $10 million with the salary cap remaining flat at $81.5 million next season. He certainly won’t get it from the clubs listed by Strickland. They’ve all got limited cap space and pending free agents of their own to deal with. They’d have to shed considerable cap space to sign him.

Landeskog earned $5.57 annually on a seven-year deal. If the Avs are offering five years at $7 million per he should jump on that. It’s a reasonable raise that keeps him on a potential Cup contender through the remaining years of his playing prime. The Avs also need room to re-sign Cale Makar and Philipp Grubauer.

THE DETROIT NEWS/NEW YORK POST: report the New York Islanders last night traded defenseman Nick Leddy to the Detroit Red Wings in exchange for winger Richard Panik and a second-round draft pick (originally belonging to the Edmonton Oilers) in this year’s NHL draft.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: The Wings also retained half of Panik’s $2.75 million salary. He’s signed through 2022-23. Leddy has one year remaining on his deal worth $5.5 million.

This move provides some flexibility for the cap-strapped Islanders, freeing up over $4 million in payroll. It also provides the rebuilding Red Wings with an experienced puck-moving defenseman who can log top-four minutes.

The Detroit News’ Ted Kulfan speculates the Wings could pair Leddy with promising rookie Moritz Seider. They could also use him as a trade chip if they become sellers at next season’s trade deadline. His addition could also mean they don’t re-sign pending UFA Marc Staal.

THE PROVINCE: Alex Edler’s 15-season NHL career with the Vancouver Canucks could be coming to an end. The veteran defenseman is going to test the free-agent market on July 28. His agent indicated the 35-year-old has never tested the free-agent waters before and he might never get the chance to do so again.

TSN: cited a report by The Athletic’s Adam Vingan indicating the Nashville Predators and pending UFA Erik Haula are discussing a new contract. He’s coming off a one-year, $1.75 million deal.

THE NEWS & OBSERVER: The Carolina Hurricanes signed restricted free agent forward Morgan Geekie to a one-year, two-way contract with $750K at the NHL level.

NEW YORK POST: The Rangers signed RFA forward Julien Gauthier to a one-year, two-way contract worth $775K at the NHL level.

MONTREAL GAZETTE: Former Laval Rocket coach Joel Bouchard denied any rift or animosity with the Canadiens. Bouchard recently joined the Anaheim Ducks as head coach of their AHL affiliate in San Diego. Bouchard insists he made the change because he wanted to try something different elsewhere.


  1. Bouchard insists he made the change because he wanted to try something different elsewhere.

    And warmer.

  2. Is Stevie Y out of his mind?

    He is supposed to be rebuilding

    Instead of rebuilding…..

    1)he rescues GMLL who was trying to unload Leddy (for space and Krakken protection reasons)
    2)With retention on Panik ; is in effect paying Leddy almost $10 M to play just 1 year
    3)Picks up a 30 year old D-Man (I reiterate, this is supposed to be a rebuilding club)

    AND horrifically
    4)Has to fork over a pick to LL do 1&2&3 above

    Stevie Y gone Coo-Coo for CoaCoaPuffs

    • Detroit will get a decent return in the spring for Leddy who will help the transition game more than Marc Staal did

      • Hi ds

        I absolutely don’t challenge that they’ll get a decent return @TDL; and yes will help more with transition than Staal did

        No challenge on those points

        The acquisition of Leddy…. No challenge

        The trade… nuts

        He did Lou a tremendous…. HUGE , favour …. AND had to retain AND had to give LL a pick

        At a very minimum, this deal should have had the 2nd going from Isles to Wings

        The deal would have made more sense Leddy for Panik straight up…. Lou clears some needed Cap space ; AND Lou was not in three drivers seat as his desire to trade Leddy ASAP was made public

        With retention on Panik… the deal should have been…

        Leddy , a 2nd, and 4th

        Again… no challenge on Stevie Y acquiring Leddy

        But aquiring Leddy for effectively close to $10 M AND having to pay a 2nd; all while having full control and complete upper hand going in to the deal….. that is the craziness

        Lou won this deal in spades, and in hearts, and in diamonds; and in clubs

      • @pengy
        I do agree was overpayment to help another GM out….

      • I get your point Pengy, but DET got the best player in the deal, it isn’t like Leddy isn’t still a good player, he is. He played significant minutes on a very good team. Stevie and Lou know the player.

        Can’t just roll out the Bad News Bears every night, and ya they will get a return unless you want a revolt from all your good players and a bad culture. He has important young D that need to learn the NHL game.

        The risk of turning into BUF or what EDM was a few years ago is real.

      • Hi Ray

        The move to get Leddy….. 👍👍👍

        Losing the deal overall (and by a huge margin) is what is unbelievably surprising coming from Stevie Y

        Lou should have coughed up a 2nd and more . Probably a 2nd and a 5th.

        At best Leddy gets a late first at TDL (if Wings retain 50%) so the end result …. Wings pay (with the Panik retention) about $8.3 M for about 50 games of Leddy’s mentorship AND moving from 52nd in ‘21 draft to say high 20’s in ‘22 draft; but still have Cap hit on Panik next year

        I can’t view this in any other way but GMLL clearly winning this trade …. And by a large margin, a LARGE margin

        Stevie Y could have gone the UFA route for mentorship, at a lesser cost, with no retention on Panik; and save a 2nd…. But still got some sort of pick (@TDL) for whatever UFA D mentor he did pick up

      • Pengy and ds, disagree on the Leddy deal.

        I don’t understand why we (I do it too sometimes) think we can just scoop up a guy like Leddy for peanuts. Oh, have Lou pay you to take him!

        Reality check boys.

        Played the 2nd most minutes in reg season, 3rd most in playoffs. Led their D in scoring and they are a really good team. A game away from the SCF good. Good last year too.

        Yes Lou needed to trade him, but if folks don’t think there is a market for a guy like that you live in a different world than I do.

        Yes, Yzerman offered more than anyone else, that is usually how you get a player you are trading for.

        Last I checked teams are still trying win games. Has some young guys that need to learn how to do that. I totally get this trade.

    • There has to be an expiration date to rebuilds though. People get so into the “thrill” of building they lose sight of the ultimate goal. You most often need a few good players on elc’s to build cup depth. So you should be looking to strike on fa and trades to winnow when some of these high picks are still very young.

      I worry Ottawa is going to rebuild right past their window. The time for them is now.

      Detroit probably a year out yet.

      • Ottawa’s time is now? In what way exactly Chrisms?

        Dorion is committed to 17 players at the moment, with $28,451,667 in cap space to sign 7 (they’ll be losing one of those committed to in the Seattle draft – likely Tierney, so add in that cap hit to what he has to spend).

        His only RFAs to deal with this year are Tkachuk, Batherson, Mete and Amadio. Tkachuk will cost the most and in his case it will either be a 3-year bridge deal at around $6.5 mil per or an 8-year one at $8.5 per. Either way Dorion still has a good chunk. Batherson, Mete and Amadio will all likely be signed to bridge deals totaling around $8 mil. And, using the extreme one for Tkachuk, he STILL has in the area of $12 mil.

        The only UFA likely to be back is Dzingel, but he wont be signed until after the Seattle draft and either just before or at the opening of the UFA season. Coming off a $3,375,000 cap hit, he’d likely sign at a modest increase to, say, $4.1.

        So now his roster is more or less complete and he still has close to $8 mil to spend.

        The following season, with all of the above already on extended deals, his only UFA of concern will be Nick Paul – and he will be brought back. The other two – Josh Brown and Forsberg the goalie – are gone, while the only RFAs to deal with will be Norris, Formenton and Brannstrom and, barring some massive break-out season, will all be signed to affordable bridge deals.

        Geez. If Ottawa’s time is “now” what does that say about the Bruins, Leafs, Penguins, Panthers, Hurricanes, Oilers, Flames etc. ?

    • I agree with you for maybe the first time ever …

      • With me or Chrisms? 🙂

    • Yzerman has not lost his mind at all. He picks up a trade asset at the deadline in Leddy that can get you a high draft pick.

      Also, do you realize he only has 2 players signed past next year? TWO! Yes, he has some restricted free agents to sign but Detroit is basically and expansion team now. It is a great strategy. He has a ton of cap space to completely reshape this team. You will see a ton of new faces in a few years.

      Stevie Y lost his mind? Not a chance man.

    • As a Detroit fan for 40 years, I can tell you absolutely definitely and without pause that the second round pick and salary retention was worth it just to read that this means they won’t resign Staal!!

    • Your math skills aside- Lou IS “the Man”!!! Leddy-$5.5M
      Panik- $2.6M is not quite $10M but good point

      • Hi Craig… was talking cash not Cap… Wings as at now on hook for $7 M (Leddy) and $2.8 M retained on Panik… $9.8 M… that’s what I was referring to re “almost $10 M”

        Sorry if I was taken as inferring Cap. I should have clarified

  3. Re Strickland reports that one of the teams that Landeskog would be interested in signing with is the Leafs…. How is that happening?

    Dubas appears to be firm keeping the 4…. Who, as I have posted a zillion times; make up 1/2 (one HALF) of Leafs Cap

    Not a chance Landeskog leaves Avs for less than $7M…. Lets miraculously call it $7M….. so he is going to Leave a Cup fav team and go to a team that isn’t a cup fav team (mostly due to the roster make up [which is caused by hamstringing the flex using 1/2 on 4 forwards]) …. and accept the highest taxes; and be in a fish-bowl…. AND with at least $7 M …. Leafs then would be at almost 60% on 5 forwards…. So impossible to field a competitive rest of the team…. so not even close to a cup fav

    Landeskog on Leafs….. not happening !!!

    Landeskog on Knights (if they cleared room)…. I could envision. It’s doubtful…. But has much more traction than Landeskog on Leafs

    Strickland also said Landeskog would be interested in signing with Bolts…. of course… who wouldn’t they are B2B champs; in a beautiful city with great amenities and weather; that just happens to have no state taxes

    Yes he’d like to sign there…. But it is impossible… BrisBoise already is needing to clear $10 M, w/o having to add at least another $7 M

    Landeskog on Bolts…. Not happening

    Panthers or Isles… maybe

    • Pengy, a cynic might say that Landeskog is yet one more whose approach is “screw the rest of the roster … I want mine now” and, in that vein, would be a perfect fit on the Leafs.

      • George O,

        Landeskog took 7yr $5,57 in 2014-15

        MacKinnon took a 7 yr $6.3 in 2016-17

        Rantanen took a 6yr $9.25 in 2019-20

        Burakovky took 2yr $4.9 in 2020-21

        He took the home town discount already and proved he wasn’t a “screw the rest of the roster … I want mine now” player.

        Landeskog is 28y/o, the driver of the team and this is his probably his last long term contract and the bar was set by Rantanen who earns $3.7 million more a year.

        Sakic put this in motion not Landeskog.

      • I SAID a cynic might say that. We’ve already seen that epitaph leveled at the Leafs “big 3” from some sources.

      • Yes George you are the cynic. Haha

      • LOL. I fully expected the usual suspects to chime in with that so I thought, what the hell, why not a preemptive strike? But think about it – $2 mil less for each of Tavares and Matthews and $1 mil less for each of Marner and Nylander gets you a pretty good addition on D.

        Isn’t that what Crosby et all did in Pittsburgh that enabled them to build a stronger bottom third, leading to a couple of cups, and what MacKinnon and other did in Colorado with the same result – albeit not yet a cup?

    • Perhaps you, like many of us, fail to understand the modern theory of building a team by signing only difference makers. I lost my fantasy league to a guy who understood it.

      • Richard are you implying Landeskog is or isn’t a difference maker and what constitutes one or the other?

        Just for clarity.

      • DO I really need the /sarc tag?

      • Hi Richard

        Don’t get me wrong… Landeskog would be a great add… It’s just that Leafs can’t fit hm in (unless Dubas moves MM or WW…. and repeatedly it has been reported… that Dubas is sticking with those 4)

        Look out if Vegas gets Suter for a low deal ; moves say Smith out; and signs Landeskog…. that would just about fit under the cap …. and that team would be very good

    • I would take Landeskog on my team. If you had to choose between him or Hyman at $7M, I take Landy all day.
      Is $7M too much, ya, but he is a UFA and may just get it. I didn’t see EDM on his list, but would work good here.
      Maybe the Leafs are moving one of the big 4?

      • Ray, when looking at the Leafs cap situation, there is really no “big 4” – rather, it’s a “big 3” with those costing $11,640,250, $11 mil and $10,903,000 off the cap. The 4th you’re including – Nylander – “only” costs $6,962,366 and the difference between that and the lowest of the “big 3” is $3,940,634 – a pretty good roster addition.

        Moving Nylander, along with another piece, might open room for Landeskog – and then you’d really have a “big 4!”

    • Landy stays with Avalanche, they will work it out, even though the KROENKE SPORTS are the worst owners, maybe in the league. I think Joe gets the greenlight to retain the Captain!