NHL Morning Coffee Headlines – August 12, 2022
Golden Knights goaltender Robin Lehner will be sidelined for the season by hip surgery, Flyers prospect facing trial in Russia, Ed Olczyk officially joins the Kraken broadcast team, and more in today’s NHL Morning Coffee Headlines.
LAS VEGAS SUN: Vegas Golden Knights goaltender Robin Lehner will undergo hip surgery that is expected to sideline him for the entire 2022-23 season. Lehner, 31, battled injuries last season, including season-ending shoulder surgery in April.
The Golden Knights currently have goaltenders Logan Thompson, Laurent Brossoit and Michael Hutchinson under contract for the coming season. Brossoit’s status remains uncertain after undergoing hip surgery earlier in the offseason.
With the Golden Knights already exceeding the salary cap, Lehner is expected to be placed on long-term injury reserve. While that would provide $5 million in cap relief, most of that will go toward signing restricted free agents Nic Hague and Jake Leschyshyn.
CAP FRIENDLY: indicates the Golden Knights can exceed the $82.5 million salary cap by over $12.857 million by placing Lehner and Shea Weber ($7.857 million) on LTIR.
SPECTOR’S NOTE: Despite the cap relief, this is a big blow for the Golden Knights. Lehner was supposed to be their starting goaltender this season. This news has sparked speculation over how they’ll replace him. I’ll have more about that in today’s NHL Rumor Mill update.
PHILLY HOCKEY NOW: Flyers prospect goaltender Ivan Fedotov will face a preliminary hearing in Russia on Sept. 20. The 25-year-old signed a contract with the Flyers in May and was expected to back up Carter Hart this season. However, Fedotov was reportedly arrested last month on suspicion of evading military service. He has filed a complaint against the Russian government’s attempts to recruit him for military service.
Meanwhile, Mikhail Vorobyev pleaded guilty to bribery charges related to evading Russian military service. He played the last two seasons in the KHL but his NHL rights are still owned by the Flyers.
NHL.COM: Ed Olczyk has officially joined the Seattle Kraken’s broadcast team as a television analyst. Olczyk spent the past 15 years as the Chicago Blackhawks’ TV color analyst.
BOSTON HOCKEY NOW: The Bruins recently announced the promotion of Jamie Langenbrunner to assistant general manager. He’s spent the past eight seasons in the Bruins’ hockey operations department.
SAN JOSE HOCKEY NOW: The Sharks are reportedly bringing back a California Golden Seals’ look for their 2022-23 Reverse Retro jersey. The Oakland Seals were part of the NHL expansion in 1967-68 and changed their name to California Golden Seals in 1970 until their relocation to Cleveland in 1976.
Big loss for knights. Maybe they swing deal for either Hill or Reimer from sharks or 1 of the three. Kraken goalies. Time will tell
Mrbruin4, with Lehner now out for possibly the season, Vegas suddenly finds themselves facing the prospect of entering the season with rookie Logan Thompson and Broissot – currently recovering from some unidentified (for us) surgery – handing the goaltending.
And it’s not as if they can just pluck a goalie off the UFA heap – in fact the only one available is Braden Holtby – without some other major roster juggling because, as matters now stand, they are $5,794,643 OVER the cap with just 17 healthy bodies signed; 11Fs: Eichel, Stone, Karlsson, Marchesseault, Smith, Roy, Stephenson, Howden, Carrier, Kolesar, Amadio – 6D Pietrangelo, Martinez, Theodore, McNabb, Whitecloud, Hutton – with LD William Riedell out of Ohio State reporting to camp on a PTO.
C/RW Nolan Patrick is currently shown on IR with “migraine, concussion” issues while LD Hague is recovering from wrist surgery.
They do have Weber’s LTIR cap hit available to use and now Lehner’s – but one of those will barely cover the over leaving precious little to flesh out a 23-man roster.
Vegas is one that will absolutely have to move out a large contract – or face entering the season with a patch-work roster of around 19 or 20.
I agree they have the get every available star mentality and they are paying heavy price in this cap world for it. I always thought it was big error to grab Lehner in the 1st place when they already had more then capable tender in MAF. Waste of 5 mil in cap space Broissot had hip surgery too so who knows if even makes it back to game shape Fine ness they are in
Hard to understand how management in Vegas have kept their jobs.
Good luck, Bruce Cassidy.
You have to wonder what’s going through the minds of players like Eichel and Stone, both of whom were clearly quite anxious to get there at one time. It’s going to be a loooong season for them.
But, hey, with $19.5 mil combined no one’s feeling sorry for them.
All good points George. Just hoping the Sharks can benefit from Vegas’ situation by moving out a goaltender for a solid young asset or two. We’ll see, but judging from the price of Holtby, and the fact that Vegas also needs to move out major salary to make room for a goalie, I would say Reimer must be looking pretty good to the knights right about now as a temporary measure.
I believe Driedger may not start the season, so they added Jones. Their only choice is trading with their rival San Jose or grabbing Kuby, or overpaying for Gibson, Bob or Varly.
Mess. Not ness. 😉
Well, there’s always Elliot! 🙂
Any young Russian prospects would be worrisome ..
Having to serve military service
Carrying on bird seed in your luggage could get you a long jail term .
What a “messed” up dinosaur country , disgrace !
Led by – with the prerequisite military followers – the walking embodiment of the old adage “absolute power corrupts absolutely”
I think those two Russian prospects should just stay there and accept their deployment to fight in Ukraine. It’s safer there now than it is in Philadelphia.
Howard, LOL. Nearly spit out my morning coffee. Good one.
48 hr buyout clock from Zacha is ticking. I cannot see how Sweeney’s going to get out of this. Foligno?package him along with a tin of redman send him to join his brother in Minny sweeten the pie if you have to. Seeing Foligno in the lineup is almost as bad as watching Hal Gill in a footrace with Sidney Crosby, Painful. Will not respond to the Bobbsey twins.
Have to have salary over 4 million to be eligible to be bought out. So no one is
Foligno. Can be traded. Just add the bruins 1st rd pick. So he staying too life will go on
You’re just a poster like everybody else on here
You’re opinion means nothing to me. You think Sweeney’s doing good job, I don’t it’s as simple as that. You want to be Sweeney’s avid admirer you and your little buddy go ahead. I think they have to somehow move Foligno he can’t play anymore. This will be my last response to you I just don’t see the point. It’s like trying to blow out a lightbulb.
Vegas is screwed. There are no decent starting goalies available. The goalies they have are either tweeners or untested for the long haul. Which only reinforces Rule #1for building a team in the age of free agency and salary caps: It’s not how much money you spend on players, it’s how you spend the money.
Exactly. I have to cringe every time I hear the so-called rationale that “you have to pay your stars top dollar” – well, maybe one can argue that – but then good luck trying to flesh out the rest of your line-up – AND keep the ones who do break out when they reach RFA or UFA status if over 50% of what you have to spend is forked over to 5 or 6.
I suppose, if one cup is satisfactory for your fan base, followed by endless juggling and being “close but no cigar” for several seasons, it’s the way to go. Or, like Tampa, get lucky on being able to finagle the rules.
I dunno. Hard to say what the definition of success is under a hard cap existence.
George you can’t disagree if you’re forced to break the bank to keep or get a player that you wouldn’t prefer that player be a star than a plug?
That’s all it’s meant by pay the stars. If you have to spend better on a rare talent than a replaceable player that’s at best a bottom or middle six guy. I do agree there are limits but you’d have to admit, if you had a special player that would be worth it, I think it would be impossible for you to just give him up (trade or walk) because some other support or depth guy, needs that space to be resigned. Right?
I don’t mind there being a cap that will help all the teams become and remain competitive. Not for a while but always “in it”. We are seeing evidence that the current cap structure is not working for teams or for players. Teams can’t keep their star players without blowing the cap and depth players get the musical chair game for a chance to play for less both in term and dollars.
I think vegas has the talent… barring even more injuries to the stars… to be competitive even with below average goaltending. The team as it is is a playoff competitor. They successfully did the hardest part and brought in star power. Now it’s just some cleaning up around the edges.
I would not count Thompson on being awful. I do understand small sample size but last year 10-5, 2.68 gaa and .914 save % better than most .
I agree Swany, Thompson has a Golden (Knight) opportunity. He’s ready and will have a decent team in front of him. VGK will have to ride their top 6 forwards and top 4 d harder than normal, but Thompson might just be able rise to the challenge. They should pick up Miller to play 35 games and give the rest to the kid.
Heh. That’s why I inserted the “I dunno” Ron – it seems like a classic “damned if you do – damned if you don’t” situation when you have no choice but to recognize that a McDavid or a Matthews is a franchise talent and either pay them at the top of the scale – or move them in the interest of a better-balanced lineup and face the wrath of the average fan base. Which usually leads to a loss of your job.
It’s a situation that is going to get worse before it gets better – in terms of a return to pre-Covid annual cap increases. And Ottawa is headed there with Tkachuk ($8,205,714), Chabot ($8,000,000), Norris ($7,950,000), Giroux ($6,500,000) and, next year, having to re-up RFAs DeBrincat and Stutzle and UFA Zub (not to mention if and when they add that elusive Top 4 RD who isn’t going to be some bargain-basement type).
Not quite on the scale of Edmonton and Toronto’s top cap hits, for example … but eventually going to impact roster decisions fairly soon.
And to that to happen to smaller market teams makes it worse since the idea was for them to be able to keep their talent.
Something’s not right. The cap seems to grow at a smaller and slower pace than the demands of the market. That’s why I was thinking of something that can exclude part or whole contracts of players that are drafted and developed by the team. So in Ottawa’s case the cap hit of Norris (trade), Giroux (FA) and DeBrincat (trade) (side note: nice hull there right?) would cost against the cap whereas Tkachuck, Stutzle and many others wont count against the cap. It will still cost you real money to keep them and in some cases more than you’d like (thx Canada) but at least it wont mean dismantling teams just to stay under a number. I think its important to the future of the game to keep teams competitive and give fans reason to cheer year after especially in fair-weather cities. This cap isn’t that.
Ron, to paraphrase and don’t take it personally, it’s COVID, stupid!