NHL Morning Coffee Headlines – July 8, 2022

by | Jul 8, 2022 | News, NHL | 35 comments

The aftermath of a chaotic first round of the 2022 Draft, Joe Sakic was named GM of the Year, and more in today’s NHL morning coffee headlines.

NHL.COM: The Montreal Canadiens surprised the hockey world and made history by selecting winger Juraj Slavkovsky with the No. 1 pick in the 2022 NHL Draft, making him the first player from Slovakia to go first overall. The Canadiens bypassed center Shane Wright of the OHL’s Kingston Frontenacs, who had been ranked as the top prospect by NHL Central Scouting.

Further history was made when the New Jersey Devils chose defenseman Simon Nemec with the second-overall selection. Slavkovsky and Nemec are the first Slovakians to become the top-two players selected in an NHL draft.

Center Logan Cooley of the U.S. National Team Development Program (USNTDP) was selected by the Arizona Coyotes with the third-overall pick. Wright was chosen fourth overall by the Seattle Kraken.

The Canadiens also chose Slovakian winger Filip Mesar with the No. 26 pick. Meanwhile, the Coyotes selected center Conor Geekie (11th overall) from the WHL’s Winnipeg Ice and Maveric Lamoureux from the QMJHL’s Drummondville Voltigeurs at No. 29.

After starting Thursday with no picks in the first round, the Chicago Blackhawks wound up with three after shipping winger Alex DeBrincat to the Ottawa Senators, center Kirby Dach to the Canadiens and acquiring goalie Petr Mrazek as part of a return from the Toronto Maple Leafs. They chose defenseman Kevin Korchinski from the WHL’s Seattle Thunderbirds at No. 7, center Frank Nazar from the USNTDP at No. 13 and defenseman Sam Rinzel from Chaska High School at No. 25.

With two picks in the first round, the Columbus Blue Jackets selected Czechia defenseman David Jiricek sixth overall and blueliner Denton Mateychuk from the WHL’s Moose Jaw Warriors with the No. 12 pick.

The Buffalo Sabres had three selections in the first round, choosing Winnipeg Ice center Matthew Savoie ninth overall, Swedish center Noah Ostlund with the No. 16 selection and Czechia center Jiri Kulich at No. 28.

With two first-rounders, the Anaheim Ducks selected Pavel Mintyukov of the OHL’s Saginaw Spirit at No. 10 and center Nathan Gaucher of the QMJHL’s Quebec Remparts at No. 22. The Minnesota Wild used their two first-round picks to choose Swedish winger Liam Ohgren at No. 19 and Russian winger Danila Yurov at No. 24.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: You can see the full results from the first round by following the link above.

That was one of the wilder drafts regarding surprising selections and player movement via trades. You can read my take on those moves involving NHL players here.

Slafkovsky was as surprised as most in the Bell Centre by his selection as the first-overall pick. The big winger has the potential to become a scoring star in the NHL. He was named tournament MVP in the 2022 Beijing Olympics helping Slovakia win its first-ever medal (bronze) in men’s hockey with a tournament-leading seven goals.

Wright, meanwhile, admitted he’ll have a chip on his shoulder from this outcome which he intends to use as motivation in the future. His style of play drew comparisons to Boston Bruins captain Patrice Bergeron. The Kraken will have a future Selke Trophy center on their hands if he plays up to projections.

Rounds 2 through 7 will be held today at the Bell Centre in Montreal at 11 am ET.

THE HOCKEY NEWS: Center Jagger Firkus of the WHL’s Moose Jaw Warriors, defenseman Ryan Chesley of the USNTDP and blueliner Calle Odelius of Djurgardens in the Swedish Hockey League are among Tony Ferrari’s top-five prospects remaining after the first round. Center Jack Hughes of Northeastern University in the NCAA and winger Julian Lutz of EHC Munchen in Germany round out his list.

Joe Sakic of the Colorado Avalanche is the 2021-22 winner of the Jim Gregory General Manager of the Year Award.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: A well-deserved honor for Sakic who did a fine job building the Avalanche into the 2022 Stanley Cup champions.

TSN: Edmonton Oilers GM Ken Holland said he’s given defenseman Duncan Keith until Saturday whether he intends to play next season or retire. Keith, 38, has one year remaining on his contract. His retirement would free up $5.54 million in salary-cap space.

TSN: The Los Angeles Kings hired former goaltender Manon Rheaume as a hockey operations advisor focusing on prospect development. She’s among several women hired to prominent positions among NHL teams in recent weeks.


  1. George…. Cheers on getting Debrincat…. AND… I humbly bow to your prignostication of the “Wright” drop

    I will ask my EA as soon as she arrives her to locate where I can get a cup of Jamaica Mountain Blue

    Sad day to switch out a great cup O’Tim’s for a cup of JMB; but a bet is a bet

    Love the double move by Habs to snatch Dach

    I’m OK with Leafs dropping 13 spots plus picks to rid Mrazek

    I like Pen’s “pick” of Pickering

    Cooley’s face (on his walk up) seemed to indicate that he was not pleased going to Yotes; yet Wright seemed to be beaming on his walk up to podium to become a Krakken????? What was that? Geekie seemed pleased.

    A 2nd and a 3rd to move Kassian seemed steep

    Some good moves by Davidson to go from 0 first rounders to 3; all done on same day…. But with Debrincat and dach going…. One would have to think Kane and Toews will want to move

    • Pengy

      Be careful with the Blue. It is one of best coffees in world. Hard to find outside of Jamaica. Usually only. A blend is around not really the same Though Timmy’s is Canada brew JBM is on another level
      Let’s see what happens today trade wise

      • Thanks MB4

        I’ve had it once… was at a meeting in LA a couple of years ago and that is what they were serving…. absolutely did not like the taste… not at all….couldn’t finish it. Had to finish meeting off with tea.

        But a bet is a bet…. Will enjoy my Tim’s until my EA can locate the JBM ; and I’ll take the hit and down it

      • Don’t worry, MB4, Pengy’s EA will find the Blue.

        Pengy would do it himself but isn’t that what EA’s are for?

        Pengy, man, do you ever think about what you’ve written?

  2. Read somewhere else that Habs had deal in place for Dach before making 1st pick. Might they have chosen Wright if they hadn’t? Devils loaded down the middle so kind of expected them to go defense. I guess the big surprise would be Arizona passing on Wright. Dach return didn’t seem like a lot and I wonder how Isle fans feel about trading the 13th pick for Romanov instead of using it themselves for Dach?

  3. As usual Sweeney does nothing how does this guy keeps his job?! One of lives little mysteries that and the “Navier-Stokes solution” Although Sweeney’s working the phones

    • Sweeney was last seen walking up and down Main St in Chatham Ma on Cape Cod …seems he’s interested in buying miniature lighthouses for his collection

  4. Sweeney wanted to get into the 1st rd of the draft but the problem was he has nobody to trade to get into that position…he’s not trading Pasta or McAvoy ……this is my last time on this subject I hope …. Jake DeBrusk and his new contract got Cassidy fired and to me DeBrusk should’ve been traded and Sweeney should’ve been fired

    • You read my my mail Joe, listen there are are many nhl owners and Presidents in the nhl who would fire their gm’s over the 2015 draft alone, never mind poor drafting 2019 John Beecher.( useless).Horrible free agent signings. Over paying Ullmark & complete bust Foligno etc.(his dressing room presence is outstanding. ) Yet they extend Sweeney’s contract?! Lastnight he was trying to trade up….you know that was going to fail. It’s one disaster after another with this guy! I haven’t watched the draft in years Sweeney never does anything.

      • Sure would like to got to the pub and have a few beers with you 2 guys!


        Cheer the F up already or just cheer for the best team every year if you can’t deal with a little disappointment.

        Hate to see what you’re like if something serious actually happened to you.

        We get it, you don’t like Sweeney. You’re like my flippin’ mother in law who won’t let stuff go from the past, except more annoying times 10 because it is about something with zero impact on you lives.

        Whiny little b…

    • Hey Ray… Sure would like to got to the pub and have a few beers with you 2 guys!
      Cheer the F up already or just cheer for the best team every year if you can’t deal with a little disappointment.
      Hate to see what you’re like if something serious actually happened to you.

      In serious you mean like having cancer or have a daughter with cancer or have a 8 year old son died after getting hit by a car …STFU

      • Sorry to hear about your son and daughter Joe, having recently lost a family member myself, it sucks. Can’t imagine what losing a child is like.

        Hope you and your daughter recover from your cancer.

        My apologies, didn’t mean to suggest you aren’t dealing with serious issues.

      • Ray … I’ve been a Bruins fan since 1970 and have enjoyed the good times and hated the bad times but I’ve always commented on both to anyone who will listen …So if you don’t like what RWM or myself have to say don’t read it … I don’t read every post here and it’s my choice

      • Sock it to em Joe. mr do gooder Ray , always judging and making unnecessary comments you know the what . trouble is I almost hate to say this, but There are times I actually don’t mind the guy and then there’s others where I like to press the Mute button on his and that dolt Mr bruin’s comments. Oh I forgot about Maxwell now he’s joined the fray must be some kind of fraternity “sisterhood of the travelling do gooders”,Sweeney is the worst gm as far as I’m concerned in bruins history and I’ve been watching since the 70’s. I was eight then so count up the years.I am not much younger than most of the people on this site.when I heard after all his blunders they extended his contract again look I’m not a a heavy beer drinker one is enough for me but I think chugged about three or four that night before I stopped just ease the pain. That was depressing. Keep up the good work Joe. Just one more thing I am not going sit around and wait for Sweeney to do something he always ends up doing something stupid.

  5. Slavkovsky seems to make more sense in light of the Dach deal but, of mild interest, a Toronto sports writer suggested that if the Habs chose Slavkovsky they were intent on building a goal scoring team and if they chose Wright they were heading toward a low scoring defense first model. Maybe.

    @Slick … I did not watch a lot of hockey last year but Romanov is developing into a responsible minute-eating player … doubtless Islander fans know nothing about him but Habs fans are largely going to be burned by that and the history of the Habs trading away promising d men. I am not suggesting Romanov will achieve Sergachev or McDonnagh levels but second pairing dependability for sure.

    For the Isles, like the Habs with Dach, you get a guy who already proved he can play in the NHL but still really young and, hopefully, not done developing. As we know, sometimes first rounders don’t pan out how you hope.

    • The consensus amongst habs fans is that Romanov’s hockey IQ is not particularly high, and he’s decision making isn’t quick enough for the NHL. He’s been a bit of a liability so far, but that doesn’t say much since the team was terrible. He may or may not improve with the Isles. Both Sergachev and McDonnagh had much more potential at the time of their trades. Habs make this trade because they have Ghule, Struble, and Xhekaj on the left side. Unsure if any of those three play in the NHL next season. If not then they will be looking for another NHL ready LD.

      • Good point about the left side … and your observation about his hockey IQ fits with the idea that St.Louis wants thinking players that need less of a system to work within … so like I said, Romanov probably does well with the Isles.

      • You are forgetting Harris

      • Romanov is a fan favourite because he hits, and has been hyped since being drafted. He has energy that’s infectious but he hasn’t lived up to expectations.
        He’s a good D-man but needs a strong partner to play top 4.

        Slavkovsky/Dach project better than Romanov/Wright imo.

      • Hi Mike, you’re right. I didn’t mention the Habs’ AHL LD of Harris, Leskinen, Norlinder, and Fairbrother. It’s possible they might not need to trade for a LD after all.

        habfan30, agree and agree.

        I hope Habs draft Ryan Chesley with the 33rd pick, but I think they are going to continue picking from Europe.

      • everydayboots, not sure what habs fans you have been canvassing, except for Habfan30, who agrees with you.

        Romanov played well during the Habs Cup run two years ago, and as a young D was still growing. Hard to evaluate last year as the team was a S&*^t show from the drop of the puck.

        The key to the trade is Dach. Slavkovsky isn’t likely to out perform Wright by a meaningful amount, and clearly Wright was stepped over by the trade being arranged before the draft. If Dach doesn’t work out, it means the Habs forfeited a two center, and centers are at a premium.

        We’ll see in two years.

      • Further to Romanov, Kent Hughes:

        ” … we couldn’t convince someone to make the trade with just the picks and Romanov was a very sought-after player.”

        Here is the quote that sums the rationale, nicely, IMO:

        Hughes said afterwards he wouldn’t have made this deal if Romanov was a power-play quarterback and a major offensive catalyst.

      • Further to Romanov’s play during the Habs Cup run two years ago, he wasn’t dressed for most of it, he only played 4 games.

        Some fans ooh and ahh over the hits but ignore the brain cramps that just weren’t going away.

        He’s a fun kid but Harris and Guhle both pass him by.

      • HF30: Ooops. Thanks for the correction.

      • Hey, LJ. Romanov’s play has been well documented at habseyesontheprize.com

        As habfan30 pointed out, he did not contribute much to their playoff run.

        I think we are in agreement re analyzing his play given the performance of the team (see my previous comment).

        Those are kind quotes from the Habs GM.

        As habfan30 pointed out: Slavkovsky/Dach project > Romanov/Wright. Habs were willing to pass on Wright and give-up 13th pick to explore that project. So we’ll see.

    • Romanov is an awful lot of fun. Great character, outgoing personality, big hits on the ice… Unfortunately not much offensive upside and often out of position. As a Habs fan I would have loved to keep him, but getting #13 back and then flipping that for Dach is a gamble I would make any time…

  6. Rick have a snickers any GM would have traded away their first for Lindholm especially with him signing the extension brilliant move.

    • 100% agree most fans on these boards over value 1st rounders and prospects. If i were a GM would take a proven top 4 D or Top 6 forward for 1st all day if you’re ready to compete to win rounds in playoffs. Each playoff home game is worth roughly 5-7M depending on market.

      Roughly 60% of first rounders play 1 game in NHL. They don’t have exact stat but some hockey minds say 10-15% of 1st rounders become very good players. Not the best odds. If GM picked Dman 15th overall and they said he will be Lindholm in 7 years they would take that everyday of the week.

      Case in point with over valuing prospects: Sandin…. Dubas and fans said he was untouchable, now he barely fits on team and Dubas said oh well if he gets offer sheet hope it’s fast so we can move on. He was untouchable and now worth a 2nd or 3rd at most 2 years later. See offer sheet comp at bottom of post.

      Another note on over valuing players and trades. They simply are so hard to make in new NHL/cap world no player is worth what anyone thinks because of cap and money. Case and point debrincat 40 goal scorer worth 1st, 2nd and 3rd. So for example JT miller is not worth Nylander plus prospect plus 1st. JT miller with one year left and age if you compare him to debrincat is probably 1st and 2nd OR 1st and good prospect. Sorry for the rant just get frustrated when everyone chirps trade proposal and says don’t want your teams garbage, unfortunately in the cap/new NHL trades for really good players are typically 2 young assets and maybe some cap space. Some one like Nylander who is young and out playing his contact in a cap world has a lot of value when trading for another high end slightly older player and the Leafs know it. So unless you get an older elite player back like a miller or Gibson one for one you wouldn’t move a Nylander 70-80pt player who is young and makes under 7M is Gold in cap world. (Just using as example)

      offer sheet comp.

      Over $1,386,490 to $2,100,742

      Third-round pick

      Over $2,100,742 to $4,201,488

      Second-round pick

  7. C&P….. Six months before hiring Cassidy, the Bruins threw a $30 million bag at David Backes. That was a year after throwing a bag at Matt Beleskey, and trading (highly affordable) top-six right wing Reilly Smith with his value at its absolute lowest. And during Cassidy’s tenure, the Bruins dropped a combined $84 million on a free agent group that included John Moore, Brett Ritchie, Craig Smith, Mike Reilly, Derek Forbort, Tomas Nosek, Linus Ullmark, Erik Haula, and Nick Foligno. Also don’t forget Kase & Nash ….and who was fired

    • The only strength that Sweeney had was in negotiating contracts.He got Marchand and Pasta for ridiculously low ,team friendly deals.6.1 and 6.6 aav,However even that part of his job is depreciating since he signed a 3rd line center at over 5 million and a backup goalie at 5 mil. also.His one time strentgh has become a weakness like all the other prerequisites in the jog,that being drafting ,trading,and signing free agents.

  8. Now do the other 30 teams Leafs just traded their first to get rid of a goalie they signed last year lol happens all the time.

    • What are you saying Obe, all GM make perfect acquisitions unless your Dubas, just like your comments, perfect every time?
      It would be great to never make a mistake… please tell us what it’s like because I’ve thought we all aren’t perfect but what sets people apart is how they manage their errors.

      I think in the case of the Leafs, trading down a dozen odd spots to gain $3.5m in cap space which some have noted is effectively the equivalent of giving up a 7th round pick is a lot better than trading down 3 spots and giving away a 2nd and a 3rd for a player with a lower cap hit and probably a better player. Yup, nice shade bud.

      • Are we going to go through an entire season this coming year of your incessantly defensive whining every time someone criticizes the Leafs, Ron? You’re newer to this site than Rick Murray, but already just as tiresome.

      • I guess pointing out facts that contradict a fallacious comment is whining to you. Since a large group here love trashing the Leafs, I feel obligated to shoot back. Is that a problem?

      • Ron is a huge leafs homer their is no better team in the league that cant get out of the first round