NHL Morning Coffee Headlines – May 27, 2019

Updates on Brad Marchand and Jordan Binnington, Mark Stone named 2019 IIHF Worlds MVP, and more in today’s NHL morning coffee headlines.

NBC SPORTS: Boston Bruins winger Brad Marchand is listed as “good to go” after taking a maintenance day from practice yesterday. He’s expected to be in the lineup for tonight’s opening game of the 2019 Stanley Cup Final.

Could Jordan Binnington become the NHL’s version of Kurt Warner? (Photo via NHL Images)

 STLTODAY.COM: St. Louis Blues goaltender Jordan Binnington’s story is drawing comparisons to former St. Louis Rams quarterback Kurt Warner. The latter came out of nowhere to lead his club to the Super Bowl 20 years ago. Binnington, a midseason call-up, has backstopped the Blues to their first Stanley Cup Final in 49 years.

NBC PHILADELPHIA: NHL Hall-of-Famer Bob Clarke former Cherry Hill, NJ, home (with a Philadephia Flyers logo-shaped swimming pool) is up for sale for $1.4 million.

THE SCORE: Rouyn-Noranda Huskies defeated the Halifax Mooseheads 3-1 to win the 2019 Memorial Cup.

SPORTSNET: Finland upset Canada 3-1 to win the 2019 IIHF World Championships. Canadian player (and Vegas Golden Knights winger) Mark Stone was named tournament MVP.

 










NHL Morning Coffee Headlines – May 26, 2019

Updates on David Krejci and Vince Dunn, Don Waddell returning as Hurricanes GM and President, and the latest contract signings in today’s NHL morning coffee headlines. 

Boston Bruins center David Krejci (illness) skipped practice yesterday (Photo via NHL Images).

  NBC SPORTS BOSTON: An illness sidelined Bruins center David Krejci from practice yesterday. Head coach Bruce Cassidy expects Krejci will be on the ice for today’s practice. The illness isn’t expected to keep him out of Game 1 of the Stanley Cup Final against the St. Louis Blues on Monday.

STLTODAY.COM:  Blues defenseman Vince Dunn (concussion symptoms) skated with his teammates yesterday in practice. It’s the first time he’s done so since taking a puck to the face in Game 3 of the Western Conference Final. No word if he’ll play in Game 1 against the Bruins tomorrow but he was traveling with the Blues to Boston. 

THE SCORE: Despite being without a contract for next season, Don Waddell confirms he’s returning as general manager and president of the Carolina Hurricanes. He’s working out terms for a new deal with team owner Tom Dundon. In his first season as Hurricanes GM, the club reached the playoffs for the first time since 2009 and advanced to the Eastern Conference Final. 

MONTREAL GAZETTE: The Canadiens re-signed defenseman Brett Kulak to a three-year contract extension worth $1.85-million per season. He was slated to become a restricted free agent on July 1. 

WINNIPEG SUN: The Jets re-signed goaltender Laurent Brossoit to a one-year, $1.225-million contract. 










NHL Morning Coffee Headlines – May 25, 2019

Updates on Erik Karlsson, Roman Josi, the Coyotes ownership situation, and more in today’s NHL morning coffee headlines.

NBC SPORTS: Erik Karlsson’s brief tenure with the San Jose Sharks may be over. On Friday, Karlsson tweeted his thanks to the Sharks’ organization, fans, and his teammates. The 28-year-old defenseman is slated to become an unrestricted free agent on July 1. 

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Karlsson hasn’t ruled out returning to the Sharks, but he sounds like he’s going to test the market. Unless general manager Doug Wilson passes on re-signing long-time Sharks Joe Pavelski and Joe Thornton, he probably can’t afford Karlsson. 

THE SCORE: Nashville Predators general manager David Poile considers re-signing captain Roman Josi his “No. 1 priority.”  The 28-year-old blueliner is a year away from UFA eligibility. The Predators can sign him to an extension beginning on July 1. 

Re-signing Roman Josi is the Nashville Predators’ priority this summer (Photo via NHL Images).

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Re-signing Josi won’t affect the Predators’ salary cap for 2019-20. However, Poile must ensure he’s got sufficient cap space after next season to absorb that new contract. Cap Friendly indicates the Preds have over $56 million invested in 12 players for 2020-21. Josi’s earning $4 million annually on his current contract. He could double his salary on his next deal. 

AZCENTRAL.COM: An NHL source denied a change of ownership of the Arizona Coyotes is imminent. A recent report from Sportsnet’s John Shannon cited a source claiming current owner Andrew Barroway will assume a minority role. However, a deal is far from being finalized and there are other options under consideration. 

NBC SPORTS: Boston Bruins winger Jake DeBrusk hopes to regain his scoring touch in the upcoming Stanley Cup Final. In two rounds last season, he tallied six goals and eight points. Entering this year’s Final, he’s managed three goals and seven points. 

STLTODAY.COM: St. Louis Blues defenseman Vince Dunn (concussion symptoms) didn’t join his teammates in practice yesterday. That casts doubt upon the possibility he’ll rejoin the lineup in time for Game 1 of the Stanley Cup Final. 

 

 










NHL Morning Coffee Headlines – May 24, 2019

Updates on the Stanley Cup Finalists, Islanders re-sign Brock Nelson, Oilers reportedly to hire Dave Tippett as head coach, and the Senators hire D.J. Smith as head coach. Details and much more in today’s NHL morning coffee headlines. 

NBC SPORTS BOSTON: Over 16,000 fans turned out for a Bruins intra-scrimmage game last night at Boston’s TD Garden. Bruins winger Brad Marchand left the game after jamming his left hand in a collision with Connor Clifton but returned to finish the contest. 

STLTODAY.COM: Blues defenseman Vince Dunn has resumed skating after missing the last three games of the Western Conference Final. Dunn was sidelined after taking a puck to the face during Game 3. He’s believed to be dealing with concussion symptoms. There’s no timetable for his return. 

NEWSDAY: The New York Islanders re-signed center Brock Nelson to a six-year, $36-million contract. Nelson was slated to become an unrestricted free agent this summer. He’s completing a one-year, $4.25-million deal. 

New York Islanders re-sign center Brock Nelson (Photo via NHL Images).

SPECTOR’S NOTE: That’s a considerable pay raise for Nelson, who’s coming off a career-high 53-point performance.  Cap Friendly indicates the deal ($6 million annual average value) comes with a full no-trade clause in the first two years and a modified no-trade for the remaining term.

Such is the market value for a second-line center under a constantly rising salary cap. I anticipated Nelson would get at most $5.5 million on a five-year contract. 

Newsday’s Arthur Staple anticipated Islanders captain Anders Lee can expect a deal (from the Isles or someone else) worth $7 million annually. 

EDMONTON JOURNAL: Kurt Leavins reports Dave Tippett is the new head coach of the Oilers. The hiring could be formally announced as early as today. 

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Tippett has 14 seasons of NHL head-coaching experience under his belt. However, there’s some concern over whether he can coach the new up-tempo style prevalent around the league. If he can’t, there won’t be much change in the Oilers’ fortunes. 

OTTAWA SUN: The Senators introduced D.J. Smith as their new head coach. Smith was an assistant coach with the Toronto Maple Leafs. 

SPECTOR’S NOTE: I like this hire by the Senators. Smith spent four seasons with the Leafs. Before that, he spent three seasons as head coach of the OHL’s Oshawa Generals. In 2014-15, he guided the Generals to the OHL championship and the Memorial Cup. He has lots of experience with young players, which should prove invaluable for the rebuilding Senators. 

Speaking of the Leafs, they hired former Florida Panthers assistant coach Paul McFarland as Smith’s replacement. 

NBC SPORTS BAY AREA: Two members of the San Jose Sharks dealt with multiple injuries during the playoffs. Captain Joe Pavelski suffered a head injury in the opening round. He also aggravated a knee injury in Game 5 of the Conference Final and had surgery on his left hand. Tomas Hertl suffered a head injury in Game 5 of the Final and broke his left pinkie finger in the opening round.

Erik Karlsson confirmed he reaggravated a lower-body injury and hopes to avoid off-season surgery. Joe Thornton suffered a groin injury in the conference final.

Thornton also said he hasn’t reached a decision yet on his future. If he does return for one more season, he said it’ll only be with the Sharks. 

SPECTOR’S NOTE: I think Thornton has another year left in him. I also expect the Sharks will re-sign captain Pavelski. I don’t believe they can afford to re-sign Karlsson. 

MLIVE.COM:  Detroit Red Wings center Dylan Larkin will be fine after being struck in the groin by a shot during a game against Canada in the IIHF World Championships. Larkin missed the remaining games for Team USA, who were eliminated yesterday by Russia. 

TWINCITIES.COM: The Minnesota Wild have hired Mike Modano as an executive advisor to Craig Leipold, the club owner. 

LOS ANGELES TIMES: The Kings cut ties with defenseman Slava Voynov after his season-long suspension was cut in half by an independent arbitrator. Voynov pleaded no contest to a charge of misdemeanor corporal injury to his spouse in 2015. He was suspended indefinitely by the NHL and spent two months in jail before returning to Russia. The conviction was expunged last summer, but the league levied a one-year suspension.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Voynov can sign with an NHL club after 41 games this coming season. Given the reason behind his suspension, I doubt any NHL team will risk the public backlash. 

SPORTSNET: Jacques Martin will be staying with the Pittsburgh Penguins as an assistant coach. He was interviewed by the Buffalo Sabres and Ottawa Senators for their head-coaching positions. 

TRIBLIVE.COM: Speaking of the Penguins, they re-signed defenseman Chad Ruhwedel to a two-year deal worth $700K per season.

CHICAGO SUN-TIMES: The Blackhawks hired Tomas Mitell as an assistant coach. 

ESPN.COM: On a non-NHL note, the National Women’s Hockey League “is increasing salaries, offering a 50-50 split of sponsor-related revenues and improved benefits in an agreement reached with its players’ association.”










NHL Morning Coffee Headlines – May 23, 2019

Updates on the Bruins and Blues, Sedins inducted into the B.C. Sports Hall of Fame, John Davidson takes over as Rangers president. Details and more in today’s NHL morning coffee headlines.

STLTODAY.COM: The St. Louis Blues Game 6 victory in the Western Conference Final generated their highest rating ever for a game on cable TV. Nielsen rating service reported 20.8 percent of homes with a television in the St. Louis market were tuned to that game. The Blues eliminated the San Jose Sharks in that contest to advance to the Stanley Cup Final for the first time since 1970.

BOSTON HERALD: The Bruins hope to combat their 11-day layoff between series with an intra-scrimmage game tonight at the TD Garden. The Bruins will face off against the Blues in Game 1 of the Stanley Cup Final on Monday.

Daniel and Henrik Sedin were inducted into the B.C. Sports Hall of Fame (Photo via NHL.com).

  VANCOUVER SUN: Former Canucks stars Daniel and Henrik Sedin were inducted Wednesday into the B.C. Sports Hall of Fame.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: A well-deserved honor for the two greatest players in Canucks history. This won’t be the only Hall of Fame they’ll be admitted into shortly. They’re certain to be first-ballot inductees into the Hockey Hall of Fame in 2021. 

NEW YORK POST: The Rangers yesterday formally introduced John Davidson as their new president.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Some observers wonder how Davidson’s hiring will affect the Rangers’ rebuild. While he’ll have input, I expect he’ll stay out of general manager Jeff Gorton’s way. 

THE DETROIT NEWS:  Team Canada winger Anthony Mantha received a one-game suspension for a hit to the head of Team USA’s Colin White during Tuesday’s game between the two clubs at the IIHF World Championships.

There’s no update on the status of Team USA center Dylan Larkin, who took a shot directly to the groin area during that game. He’s still being evaluated and it’s uncertain if he’ll play in today’s game against Russia. Mantha and Larkin are teammates with the Detroit Red Wings.

EDMONTON JOURNAL: Growing speculation out of Edmonton suggests Dave Tippett will become the next head coach of the Edmonton Oilers.

MONTREAL GAZETTE: Canadiens home games for 2019-20 will start at 7 pm instead of 7:30 pm. Exceptions will be matinee games scheduled for special events.

ABC/FOX MONTANA: Former NHL goaltender Peter Budaj is the new assistant coach of the Montana State Bobcats men’s hockey team.

 










NHL Morning Coffee Headlines – May 22, 2019

St. Louis Blues are going to the Stanley Cup Final. Game recap plus updates on Erik Karlsson, the latest on the Oilers and Senators, and more in today’s NHL morning coffee headlines.

NHL.COM: For the first time in 49 years, the St. Louis Blues will be playing in the Stanley Cup Final. The Blues defeated the San Jose Sharks 5-1 in Game 6 of the Western Conference Final. Ryan O’Reilly collected three assists, David Perron had a goal and an assist, and Jordan Binnington made 25 saves. The Blues will take on the Boston Bruins – the team they faced during their last trip to the Final – in Game 1 of the Cup Final on Monday night

The St. Louis Blues are the 2019 NHL Western Conference champions. (Photo via NHL.com)

SPECTOR’S NOTE: The Blues are the feel-good story of 2018-19. On Jan. 3, they were dead last in the league standings. They overcame the odds (in part thanks to Binnington’s goaltending) to reach the playoffs, eliminating the Sharks, Winnipeg Jets, and Dallas Stars along the way. 

NBC SPORTS: The Sharks played without defenseman Erik Karlsson, winger Tomas Hertl and captain Joe Pavelski. The trio was sidelined by various injuries. 

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Had those three been healthy, perhaps the outcome of Game 6 would’ve been different. Karlsson was plagued by injury throughout the regular season. Sharks coach Pete DeBoer said the blueliner was healthy and dialed in “for about six weeks.”  An unrestricted free agent this summer, Karlsson’s future in San Jose is uncertain. I’ll have more on his status later today in the Rumors section.

OTTAWA SUN: Senators general manager Pierre Dorion met with former Colorado Avalanche coach Patrick Roy yesterday in Montreal. Roy was reportedly being interviewed for the Senators’ head-coaching position. Dorion has also interviewed “associate coach Marc Crawford, Belleville coach Troy Mann, Pittsburgh assistant Jacques Martin, Providence College coach Nate Leaman, Toronto assistant D.J. Smith and Dallas assistant Rick Bowness.” A decision could come as early as this weekend. 

TSN: Former Dallas Stars and Arizona Coyotes coach Dave Tippett remains the front-runner for the Edmonton Oilers’ coaching job. 

EDMONTON JOURNAL: The Oilers also dismissed Duane Sutter as their vice president of player personnel. 

NEWSOBSERVER.COM: Carolina Hurricanes forward Jordan Martinook (core muscle injury) and defenseman Calvin de Haan (right shoulder) recently underwent surgery. Martinook’s recovery time is four-to-six weeks while de Haan will be sidelined four-to-six months. 

THE DETROIT NEWS: Red Wings center Dylan Larkin was injured during Team USA’s 3-0 loss to Canada during a preliminary round game at the IIHF World Championships. No update as to his status but it’s believed to be a groin injury.