NHL Morning Coffee Headlines – August 15, 2022

by | Aug 15, 2022 | News, NHL | 25 comments

The Rangers need their young forwards to step up in 2022-23, Marc Staal looking forward to playing for a contender in Florida, Avalanche season tickets are popular again, and more in today’s NHL Morning Coffee Headlines.

NEW YORK POST: The Rangers’ success in the coming season could depend upon young forwards such as Kaapo Kakko, Alexis Lafreniere and Filip Chytil to build upon their promising performance in the 2022 Stanley Cup playoffs. They’ll also need Vitali Kravtsov to prove he’s worthy of top-six/top-nine minutes in the NHL.

New York Rangers winger Alexis Lafreniere (NHL Images)

Those youngsters will be expected to fill the gaps in their forward lines after Andrew Copp, Frank Vatrano and Tyler Motte departed via free agency this summer. The current roster accounted for 223 of the club’s 250 goals last season. That would’ve ranked 26th among last season’s teams.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Of those 223 goals, 103 came from Chris Kreider (52), Mika Zibanejad (29) and Artemi Panarin (22). The Rangers definitely need more production from those youngsters going forward.

Lafreniere seems the best bet for a breakout season. He had 19 goals in 2021-22, showing promising signs of blossoming into the scorer he was projected to become when the Rangers chose him first overall in the 2020 draft.

Injuries limited Kakko to just seven goals in 43 games last season. Chytil had eight in 67 contests, missing 12 games to injury and being scratched from six others. They could improve if they can stay healthy this season. Kravtsov played in the KHL last season so we don’t know if he’s truly ready to become an NHL regular.

FLORIDA HOCKEY NOW: Marc Staal is excited to be joining a Stanley Cup contender after signing with the Panthers last month. The 35-year-old defenseman spent the past five seasons with rebuilding clubs like the Rangers and Detroit Red Wings.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Staal saw just three games of postseason action over that period as the Rangers fell to the Carolina Hurricanes in the qualifying round of the 2020 playoffs. He inked a one-year, $750K contract on July 13 with the Panthers.

COLORADO HOCKEY NOW: The Avalanche’s Stanley Cup run has had a positive effect on their season ticket sales. They’ve already reached their cutoff/capacity limit for the coming season which is thought to be around 13,500. There’s now a waiting list for season tickets.

LAS VEGAS SUN: Nolan Patrick is expected to begin the coming season on long-term injury reserve. The 23-year-old Golden Knights forward is still dealing with an upper-body injury that limited him to just 25 games last season.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: The second-overall pick by the Philadelphia Flyers in 2017, Patrick battled migraine issues earlier in his career that cost him the entire 2019-20 season. It’s uncertain if his current injury is related to that.

THE HOCKEY NEWS: Detroit Red Wings prospect Simon Edvinsson is enjoying a solid performance for Sweden at the ongoing 2022 World Junior Championship. Chosen sixth overall by the Wings in 2021, the 6-foot-six, 203-pound defenseman signed his entry-level contract in April. He’s expected to make his NHL debut this season.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: If Edvinsson plays up to his potential, he and current Calder Memorial Trophy winner Moritz Seider will give the Wings two of the best young defensemen in the league. They could become the foundation of a future Stanley Cup champion in Detroit.


  1. Rangers were a top 5 team before acquiring Copp, Motte, and Vatrano. Their biggest issue prior to deadline was 5×5 scoring. Lafreniere led team in 5×5 goals. Kakkos ceiling I feel is still high but he seems to get hurt everytime he starts to show his potential. Chytil being the oldest of the 3 has pretty much showed what he is. Not sure if his ceiling is much higher. He’s also highest paid of 3 and will need a new deal after this season. Left D is where team really needs a prospect to step up. Gallant seems to prefer vets filling roster and will continue to bring kids along slowly. There were stories that they were bringing back Jimmy Vesey but he’s still not signed. Blais will be back after missing last season. There’s also a long line of prospects behind those guys. 6 NYR have scored a goal at current world juniors. Look for Drury to make some deals again at deadline. Definitely need to start looking at quality over quantity.

    • Slick62, right now CapFriendly shows the Rangers with these 21 signed: 12F: Panarin, Zibanejad, Kreider, Trochek, Goodrow, Chytil, Kakko, Reaves, Lafreniere, Gauthier, Hunt and Carpenter
      7 D: Fox, Trouba, Lindgren, Jones, Miller, Schneider, Hajek; 2G: Shesterkin and Halak

      That leaves them with just $1,008,531 in cap space – which precludes them from starting with a 23-man roster. And when Blais and his $1,525,000 comes off LTIR to start the season, they go to 22 signed but are now $516,469 over the cap! and 1 short of the full 23.

      So, what roster moves do you see to get them cap compliant and up to a full 23? Could they go with, say, 21 by moving one of the F t the AHL?

      • Kind Sir, you are incorrect. Blais contract is part of the Rangers current cap. No LTIR in the off season.
        Once Kravtsov is called up, the Rangers will have basically no cap space with 23 signed. 14/7/2

      • Many thanks for pointing that out Stellan A -for some reason I had assumed that what CapFriendly showed as total cap hit did not include anyone they still listed under LTIR.

        So, the basic question more or less remains – only now, do you, Slick62 and CaptainObvious see them going with that 23, including Kravtsov, and no wiggle room at all in the event they run into the usual early season 2 or 3 game absences due to nagging injuries which precludes calling anyone up from the AHL? Or do you see them making another move to create some wiggle room?

        Just curious as to how NYR fans see things shaping up.

      • George. From what I’ve read the plan is to put guys on AHL roster on non game days. Doing this they will accumulate cap space as season progresses. They could have between 3-4 mil by deadline, when I presume they will address needs. Of course some untimely injuries could muck up that plan.

      • Are waivers not required each time they do that on non-game days and, if there are still options for some, would such action deplete those options?

      • I don’t foresee any cap space trades until the deadline. They’ll play the demotion game all season to accrue as much deadline cap space as possible.
        I think Gauthier and Hunt have a chance to be replaced with Brennan Othmann and Gustav Rydal or Vesey if he signs a PTO.
        Othmann is lighting it up at the World Juniors and he would have to be returned to his junior team. As well as he is playing, I think he gets a roster spot for the 9 games or all season. Rydahl is a 3rd or 4th line grinder that I think will impress and replace what Hunt brings.
        Make or break for Hajek. Jones could be replaced with Lundkvist.
        If they falter in preseason, I see a veteran LD being signed for around league minimum like JJ or Yandle again, Russell, or Greene.

      • Hajek, Gauthier, Hunt, and Kravtsov would require waivers and can be claimed.
        Lafreniere, Jones, Miller, Schneider can be “sent’ to the AHL all season

  2. Wow, Lyle! Heard it here 1st.

    “Future Stanley Cup champion in Detroit”!?!

    Great prediction. Over/Under 4 years??

    • Over. I say five years.

    • Detroit v Columbus in the Eastern Conference finals, five years ahead.

      • Hi Paul

        I wouldn’t count out Sens as being in the ECF 5 years from now

      • Long before 5 years in their case.

      • I agree about putting the Sens in as possible contenders, but I would add Buffalo into the mix. I am a big fan of their young talent too.

      • Actually, Pengy, I could see Ottawa challenging for the ECF in 3 years, with a little luck. But Yzerman is so crafty and is such a strong builder of a roster that I think Detroit will soon be a powerhouse and both the President’s Trophy and a Cup or two within the next 10 years is not unreasonable.

      • Fully agree Paul

        Stevie Y certainly knows how to build a team

        Agree as well on Sens possible in ECF sooner


        To me Sabres are more than 5 years away from ECF (barring upsets of course)

  3. Shout out and many thanks to Howard and Habfan30 for your tips re what to see in Montreal

    Really enjoyed Montreal. The Old Town and Old Port were beautiful, as was the museum, Cathedral, mountain and plateau, Griffintown, the Belle Centre; and biking along the Lachine Canal path. Great tips, many thanks.

    Continued East and stayed in Old Quebec City. Been there many times but got to four things we had never been to before and I wanted to throw these out as recommendations as “must sees”….. Onhwa’ Lumina ; Mosaicultures; Isle D’Orleans; and Sainte-Anne-de-Beaupre.

    George, you’ll be very happy to know that every place we were along our vacation….had a Tim’s 👍…. knew you’d want to know….LOL

    • Hey Pengy! I was in Old Quebec City in 1964 with my parents, as I was a 10 yr old boy. I ordered “French Fries” in a local restaurant, and the French employees had no idea what I meant. It was very confusing to a youngster.

      • Hi JZ

        My French is extremely rusty (and limited)…. So I walked around confused (even more than usual)

      • It was not a language problem, they never heard of French fries up there at that time!!!

    • LOL. Did the language police allow the apostrophe in the Tim’s signs?

      • LOL

        I noticed all of my receipts had a comma in place of a decimal point…. Does that count?

      • That’s a virgule – not a comma! LOL

      • well…. virgule , comma, hieroglyph, smudge mark, whatever…. ‘twas confusing

        as long as my Cr card statement shows with the decimal … I’ll be good to go

        I also noticed that gas was closing in on 2,00 (see my virgule !!!!) /litre in Quebec and I filled up on return home at $1.67 (Costco) /litre

  4. Nice one, Pengy.