NHL Morning Coffee Headlines – July 9, 2021
The latest on Nikita Kucherov and Brendan Gallagher, the 2021 draft order is complete, the Leafs sign Travis Dermott, and more in today’s NHL morning coffee headlines.
SPORTSNET: cited The Athletic’s Joe Smith reporting Tampa Bay Lightning winger Nikita Kucherov played through the 2021 Stanley Cup Final with a fractured rib that required multiple injections. He still managed to put up five points in the five-game series against the Montreal Canadiens.
Kucherov had originally denied playing hurt after taking a cross-check from New York Islanders defenseman Scott Mayfield in Game 6 of their semifinal series. He left that game but returned to play in Game 7.
SPECTOR’S NOTE: Kucherov did seem off his game somewhat during the Cup Final. He tallied 27 points through the first three rounds.
CTV MONTREAL: Hours after losing in the Stanley Cup Final, Canadiens winger Brendan Gallagher discovered he’d been robbed after returning to his home.
SPECTOR’S NOTE: At least Gallagher was able to make light of the incident in a Tik Tok video. Still, that incident was insult to injury.
DAILY FACEOFF: According to numbers released by Sportsnet, this year’s Stanley Cup Final was the most-watched in the company’s history since taking over the NHL’s national broadcasting rights in 2014-15. Over 70 percent of Canadian viewers tuned in to that series.
NHL.COM: The order for the 2021 NHL Draft has been finalized. The Canadiens hold the 30th overall pick and the Lightning the 31st pick. The first round is scheduled for Friday, July 23, and rounds 2-7 on Saturday, July 24.
SPECTOR’S NOTE: The reason there are 31 picks in the first round instead of 32 is that the Arizona Coyotes forfeited their pick as punishment for violating last year’s draft combine rules.
TORONTO STAR: The Toronto Maple Leafs signed defenseman Travis Dermott to a two-year, $3 million contract extension. The annual average value is $1.5 million.
SPECTOR’S NOTE: Dermott may be under contract with the Leafs but he could end up with the Seattle Kraken if left unprotected in the July 21 expansion draft. Perhaps general manager Kyle Dubas swung a side deal with the Kraken to ensure they select someone else. Teams must submit their protection lists to the league by 5 pm EST on July 17.
THE ATHLETIC’S Scott Powers reports the Chicago Blackhawks don’t intend to buy out any players. The buyout period began at 11 pm EST last night and runs to July 27.
ASSOCIATED PRESS: The Florida Panthers are the first NHL team, and perhaps the first U.S. Major sports team, to establish an opportunity for college athletes to align with them as part of recent rules changes allowing those athletes to profit off their name and celebrity.