NHL Morning Coffee Headlines – July 21, 2021

by | Jul 21, 2021 | News, NHL | 49 comments

The Seattle Kraken expansion draft is tonight at 8 pm ET plus the latest on Vladimir Tarasenko, Phillip Danault, Ryan Ellis, Patrik Laine and more in today’s NHL morning coffee headlines.

NHL.COM: The Seattle Kraken will finally have a full roster of players as they reveal their selections this evening in the 2021 NHL expansion draft. The names will be announced at Seattle’s Gas Works Park starting at 8 pm ET. Among the notable names available is Montreal Canadiens goaltender Carey Price, Washington Capitals left wing Alex Ovechkin, St. Louis Blues winger Vladimir Tarasenko and Calgary Flames defenseman Mark Giordano.

Seattle Kraken expansion draft is July 21. (NHL.com)

SPECTOR’S NOTE: There’s speculation Price, Tarasenko and Giordano could be selected by the Kraken. I’ll have more on that in today’s Rumor Mill update. Ovechkin, however, is expected to re-sign with the Capitals following the expansion draft.

THE ATHLETIC: Speaking of Tarasenko, Jeremy Rutherford reports the surgeon who conducted the winger’s third shoulder surgery claims his patient’s left shoulder is “rock solid.”

Dr. Peter Millett said Tarasenko’s shoulder is “very stable and strong”, adding the winger told him it feels better now than it has for months. Millett is confident that Tarasenko is “100 percent ready for the upcoming season.”

SPECTOR’S NOTE: The Blues spent several weeks attempting to trade Tarasenko before exposing him in the expansion draft. This news could make him more enticing to the Kraken or to clubs that expressed interest in the 29-year-old winger.

SPORTSNET: Eric Engels cited sources claiming it’s highly unlikely Phillip Danault returns with the Montreal Canadiens. The 28-year-old center is due to become an unrestricted free agent on July 28. Engels also indicated there’s no truth to a reported deal between Danault and the Kraken.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Danault has put his Montreal-area home up for sale. His solid defensive play during the 2021 Stanley Cup playoffs should help him land a lucrative long-term deal elsewhere on July 28.

MONTREAL GAZETTE: Speaking of the Canadiens, they named Jean-Francois Houle as head coach of their AHL affiliate in Laval. The son of former Canadien Rejean Houle, he has several years of coaching experience at the university, Junior-A and minor-league levels. In 2011-12, he won the Ron Lapointe Trophy as the QMJHL’s top coach.

TSN: Philadelphia Flyers defenseman Ryan Ellis denied suffering a shoulder injury that required surgery this season. He said it was an injured knuckle that sidelined him for 20 games with the Nashville Predators. Ellis was traded to the Flyers on Saturday before the expansion draft roster freeze. He said he’s good to go for next season.

THE COLUMBUS DISPATCH: Patrik Laine is mulling the $7.5 million qualifying offer he received from the Blue Jackets. If he signs the one-year deal he’ll be a restricted free agent with arbitration rights next summer. The move could allow time for the Jackets to negotiate a long-term extension with the 23-year-old winger.

TSN: Prospect Logan Mailloux has renounced himself from this weekend’s NHL Draft. He’s asking teams not to select him following a criminal charge while playing in Sweden last year. He was investigated after distributing a photo of himself and a woman engaged in a sexual act. The photo was taken without her consent.

Mailloux received a summary punishment by fine. The NHL responded that he remains draft-eligible.

NHL.COM: Defenseman Yannick Weber has retired from the NHL after 13 seasons. He intends to continue his playing career in Switzerland. Weber amassed 94 points in 499 games with the Canadiens, Vancouver Canucks, Nashville Predators and Pittsburgh Penguins.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Best wishes to Weber in his future endeavors.


  1. Lyle, I can’t recall how Vegas conducted their draft and was just wondering – does Seattle draft from the others in alpha order or can they pick in whatever order they choose?

    • Searched around and, while I didn’t find that answer, I did discover that their actual selections have to be submitted to NHL HQ by 10:00 am ET this morning, so I suppose the actual announcements tonight will be in alpha order:

      “Seattle’s selections, which are due by 10 a.m. ET Wednesday, must account for 60 percent to 100 percent of the NHL salary cap, which will remain $81.5 million for next season. The Kraken must select at least 14 forwards, nine defensemen and three goalies, and at least 20 players who are under contract for next season.”

      • Hi George,

        I would be surprised if the selection announcement was not made with some level of name recognition. If you’re taking a Price or Giordano, I have to think you want to announce them early to get the excitement going rather than dredging through some of what is being taken from the Anaheims / Arizona’s.

        Just my two cents though, because I have no clue if there is a requirement on how they proceed.

    • Not sure. They’re following the same rules as the Golden Knights in their draft. Some here have said they’ll go in order from last place to first place based on this year’s regular-season standings.

    • Hi George I’m fairly sure that when Knights announced their first pick that it was The Flower; which would neither be in alphabetical order of team; of player name; or of where they finished in the season

      I think it will be a mixed bag order from Krakken

      What I can guarantee is that this statement will not be announced:

      The Kraken, with their first overall expansion selection; are very proud to announce our first Krakken…,. (pause for effect)…, Jack Johnson

      • I thought Larsson was/is the first Kraken?

      • Well, if that blurb I quoted from is correct, NHL HQ has known since 10:00 am ET who the picks are, and not even the players are aware. You have to wonder how hard some pundits are attempting to get info “leaked” from NHL HQ – or from the Kraken staff for that matter.

        Pengy, the more I think of it I believe you’re correct that Fleury was Vegas’ first announcement. If they do go the “name” route rather than in team alpha order, the last guy announced is going to feel like the last one picked in the 7th round of the entry draft 🙂

      • I thought engelend was their first guy. Didn’t he sign with them before the draft?

      • If you’re talking about Vegas – yes, he was. He’s since retired.

      • Judging by Lyle’s latest thread today, looks like I also got my answer to the above question.

  2. I think the LVK expansion draft went in order from last place to first place in the regular season

  3. I would like to know the Seattle Kraken came up with their coaching decision ??!

    Leafs are already in fast forward mode – switching up their band-aid , patch up work to their line up
    Dubais will not own up to his fabulous 4 Blunder and will likely keep in tact ….

  4. I think the LVK expansion draft went in order from last place to first place in the regular season

  5. Lyle, I know it would qualify as neither news nor a rumor, but did you make any bold predictions on who the Kraken would select?
    It seems most sites I’ve visited don’t think Price will be a Kraken. I thought he’d be too good to pass up just from a marketing standpoint.
    This has been really a fun time for me, I’m almost sad we’ll have our answers tonight!

  6. I’m looking forward to the Kraken’s expansion draft about as much as I’m looking forward to my upcoming root canal! Price to begin with. 30 other teams excluding Vegas got to be pretty peeved at this. Unfair and unjust!

    • Rick, good luck with the root canal. You must know already how it’s going to turn out.

    • Yes, I’m sure each team is peeved at the ~$21M that they each got to pocket.

  7. I doubt it happens. But thus kid remains draft eligible, by all accounts it seems he’s going to just be in next year instead. I’d he us Rd 1 good, do you think some GM/Owner combo get cheeky and take him in Rd 7? What he did is terrible and not saying it should or will happen. Just makes me wonder if it would cross the mind.

    • I don’t think anyone takes him. He has made it quite clear that he does not wish to be picked. If any team does draft him, he’ll probably refuse to sign with them out of spite and re-enter the draft in 2 years. I do admire him for his decision. He knows he messed up and wants to be able to prove himself.

    • JJB if im a team i woud absolutely draft him not in the 7th round, but the 5th.

      The team pr could spin it, as the letter itself has shown remorse and is trying to rebuild his character It was extremely poor judgement by a 17yr old kid who is learning from his mistake.

      • The victim has said she wanted an apology. He sent her a three sentence text. This is an egregious crime. More than his character coming through, I would attribute his supposed remorse to legal advice. It’s unfortunate some are more concerned with his career than that he is a sex offender.

  8. I did my expansion picks on capfriendly and i was way to close to the cap. Something like 1.8m close.

    I did select Price and Lauzon from Boston, AA from LA and Dunn from St.L along with Dillon from Washington.

    It was a toss up for me from Toronto i wanted to take Dermott but ended up taking Kerfoot and my last notable that i remember was taking ex bruin Heinen from Anaheim. Another debate was between Niederreiter and Bean i ended up taking Niederreiter for the goal scoring.

    Money doesn’t take long spending Niederreiter and Price account for over $15m.

    I recall Francis saying cap space is premium, does this mean he selects on the low side or take high price players for the sole purpose of flipping them for picks and prospects?

    We’ll soon find out

  9. I’ve been a blow hard for Patrick Laine on here from the beginning.

    I would suggest he except the 1yr qualifying offer, because if he doesn’t his play last year does not scream $7.5m and he could be offered far less on a long term deal.

    Take the year prove contract and see what your value really is.

    If he declines the qualifying offer, he could be sitting out for a long while because he is not presently worth $6m per

  10. I still think Bergevin should have upped the ante a bit on Danault. He had previously offered $5m. AAV over 6 years. If what is being reported is correct, they could have settled for $5.5m. AAV over 5 years. A bit less term for a bit more money.
    That being said, I would still be far from surprised if he winds up signing a deal that gets him less term and lower AAV than what the Habs offered. While he’s solid defensively, his offense is limited. He’s a guy who would average about 45-50 points per year tops. That would limit what he’d get. On a team with a solid and established No. 1 center, he’d get fewer points than he did the two years before this past season with the Habs because the offensive opportunities won’t be there.
    Stu Cowan of the Gazette tweeted that he hears that Danault was upset that the news of his rejecting the Habs offer at the beginning of the season leaked out. It seems that, even if Danault does not receive a more lucrative offer than that one, the relationship with the team has been broken.

    • Howard, you are trying to ride two horses at once. You are IMO spot on regarding Danault’s offensive shortcomings so why would the Habs give him 5.5 million?

      At the end of the day money talk so if the Habs offer is the best one he will take it. I suspect that he will take an offer from another team where the tax rate gives him more take home, irrespective of what the gross is. This is Danault’s one shot at his biggest pay cheque. He isn’t suddenly going to start filling the net so he needs to cash in on his playoff performance now.

      And while I wish him well he would likely be the Habs # 3 center in a couple of years. Even the offer of $5 million is too much for me.

      • LJ and Caper, can either of you (or anyone else) recall if Vegas selected from among the UFAs available in their draft? I don’t recall any but not sure.

      • Thanks LJ

      • I would still pay up for him because he’s been a valuable player for them and plays well within their system. There are several possible replacements on the UFA market, but no guarantee of signing them. so I’d stick with the sure thing.
        Even if he doesn’t receive a better offer elsewhere, I don’t see him coming back. It is rare that a strong UFA goes to market and them returns to his original team. The relationship between team and player is usually irreparably broken during the process.

      • I can’t say you are wrong, Howard. I can say that in his post playoff interview he said he had come to realize he was wrong to worry about losing ice time to the other centers.

        We will shortly see … but do I have it right that with bonuses due from this season the Habs have less than the full cap available for the coming one?

      • LJ,

        Habs bonus overage will count $500,000 against next seasons cap. Not too terrible.

    • Howard I’m not alone when I say I don’t think Danault is as good as Yanni Gourde And a lot of people excluding me think the latter is over paid at the same number. Go figure.

      • Phil Danault is much better than Yanni Gourde. It matters not what you”think”.
        It’s absolutely true. Gourde is a fine young player who benefits tremendously from linemates and easy deployment, but Phil is in the upper echelon of shut down centers. He plays much harder minutes against much tougher competition.

  11. But after reading the article I get the impression that those UFA signings came after the actual draft during the normal UFA season, and not prior to the draft which would have made them their actual picks from the 6 teams.

    I don’t recall them going that route, which makes me wonder of Seattle will either.

    • Found the answer to my own question again – Larsson from Edmonton and Dreidger from Florida have both been signed as UFAs and count as the picks from those two teams. So, only 28 to be announced tonight – so far.

      • George,

        Looks like the Sens are losing Daccord.

      • Yeah, saw that in Lyle’s latest thread today. Bit surprised – although I knew it was certainly a possibility. Maybe that’s why in today’s Sun that Garrioch refers to chief scout Mann musing about the possibility of selecting one of the two top goalies in this year’s draft with pick # 10. Or trading up.

        Certainly, with Tierney (who I thought they’d pick) still on the books, if Dorion is indeed dickering for a top 2 C, there won’t be any room for him. Dadonov remains as well and I was pleased to see that. I believe with the games played under his belt and a better idea of who he’ll be skating with in the fall, he’s going to have a much better year. D-man Josh Brown is another not picked who’s likely on the move now in a separate deal.

    • Derek Engelland was a UFA taken by Vegas as their Calgary pick George

      • I know … it was Chrisms who thought it was Seattle.

      • Ahh … my bad … I see what you meant – response to my wondering if Vegas used a UFA as their pick. Sorry about that. And yeah, for a while anyway, that one turned out better than most figured at the time, thinking they only did so because he was local.

      • And reading it all again, I see Chrisms had it right as well. Bad day.

  12. According to TSN 690, Frank Seravalli is reporting that Sealtte is taking Cale Fleury from the Habs, NOT Carey Price.

    • Cale Fleury ….rather lose him than Brett Kulak, or any other player.

      the hits are nice, but he literally played himself of the team and to Laval.

      He wasn’t deemed worth calling up during the stretch and Bergevin took on two cheap vets instead.

      As for Danault, I like him, but without Gallagher by his side he’s just a checking centre and shocker, both Suzuki AND Kotkaniemi play a solid 200 ft game and frequently were frustrating and shutting down Matthews and McDavid.

      Danault is a great player for the right price, a 30% increase in a frozen cap world raises him to $4 million a year.

      He’s the best face off man on the team but he’s way down the list of the top guys…#41 and Jake Evans is closing on him

      • hf30,

        Fleury was injured most of last season, that is why he never got called up.

  13. Oiler are said to be very interested in Phil Danault. They are worried about his lack of offense & are willing to pay him as a shutdown centerman.

    • Source? If they are and sign him I hope they have done so by now. Already I see leaks are coming out, Friedman reporting Price won’t be selected by the Kraken.

      • Darren Driedger was TSN 690 this morning, made the comment.

  14. HI ALL
    I got the list of players

    Seattle’s team will be AWFUL

    Anaheim Ducks Haydn Fleury (reported) Defensman $1.3M
    Arizona Coyotes Tyler Pitlick (reported) Right wing $1.75M
    Boston Bruins Jeremy Lauzon (reported) Defenseman $850K
    Buffalo Sabres Will Borgen (reported) Defenseman RFA
    Calgary Flames Mark Giordano (reported) Defenseman $6.75M
    Carolina Hurricanes Supposed to be GEEKIE
    Chicago Blackhawks John Quenneville (reported) Defenseman UFA
    Colorado Avalanche Joonas Donskoi (reported) Forward $3.9M
    Columbus Blue Jackets Gavin Bayreuther (reported) Defenseman UFA
    Dallas Stars Jamie Oleksiak (reported) Defenseman UFA
    Detroit Red Wings – – –
    Edmonton Oilers Adam Larsson Defenseman UFA
    Florida Panthers – – –
    Los Angeles Kings Kurtis MacDermid (reported) Defenseman $875K
    Minnesota Wild Carson Soucy (reported) Defenseman $2.75M
    Montreal Canadiens Cale Fleury (reported) Defenseman RFA
    Nashville Predators Calle Jarnkrok (reported) Forward $2M
    New Jersey Devils – – –
    New York Islanders Jordan Eberle (reported) Right wing $5.5M
    New York Rangers – – –
    Ottawa Senators Joey Daccord (reported) Goalie UFA
    Philadelphia Flyers Carsen Twarynski (reported) Forward RFA
    Pittsburgh Penguins Brandon Tanev (reported) Left wing $3.5M
    San Jose Sharks Alexander True (reported) Center RFA
    St. Louis Blues Vince Dunn (reported) Defenseman RFA
    Tampa Bay Lightning Yanni Gourde (reported) Center $5.167M
    Toronto Maple Leafs Jared McCann (reported) Forward $2.94M
    Vancouver Canucks Kole Lind (reported) Right wing RFA
    Washington Capitals Vitek Vanecek (reported) Goalie $716,667
    Winnipeg Jets Mason Appleton (reported) Forward UFA