NHL Morning Coffee Headlines – July 8, 2019

NHL Morning Coffee Headlines – July 8, 2019

The Hurricanes officially match Sebastian Aho’s offer sheet, an update on Don Cherry, the Sharks thank Joe Pavelski, and more in today’s NHL morning coffee headlines. 

NEWSOBSERVER.COM: As expected, the Carolina Hurricanes officially matched the Montreal Canadiens’ offer sheet to Sebastian Aho. The 21-year-old thanked the Canadiens for the offer but professed his happiness over staying with the Hurricanes. His new contract is a five-year, bonus-laden deal worth over $8.4 million annually

The Carolina Hurricanes yesterday matched Sebastian Aho’s offer sheet (Photo via NHL Images).

SPECTOR’S NOTE: There some dispute on social media over Aho’s true intentions while questioning the Habs rationale for making that offer.

The Canadiens took a calculated gamble that failed but cost them nothing. Their roster didn’t improve but it also wasn’t depleted. The Hurricanes waiting until the last day to match was seen as screwing over the Habs but it didn’t prevent them from making four UFA signings last week

The Canes keep their franchise player but for a shorter term and more money up front. The Aho camp was the only side that pretty much got what it wanted. Time will tell if this situation affects Aho’s future in Carolina beyond the tenure of his new contract. 

NBC SPORTS: The San Jose Sharks took out a full-page ad to thank former captain Joe Pavelski. After spending 13 seasons with the Sharks, Pavelski signed a three-year deal with the Dallas Stars. 

THE SCORE: Hockey Night in Canada pundit Don Cherry took to Twitter yesterday to quell speculation over his future. The brouhaha arose after Toronto Sun columnist Steve Simmons claimed Cherry’s return hadn’t been confirmed. Cherry said he was told a week after the 2019 playoffs he would be back for 2019-20. 

NEW YORK POST: Sonny Milano and A.J. Greer were arrested by New York police yesterday morning after a fight with an acquaintance. Milano plays for the Columbus Blue Jackets while Greer is a member of the Colorado Avalanche. 

The scrap was said to be either a disagreement over the payment of a restaurant tab or the victim becoming rowdy and refusing to leave the players’ apartment when asked. The pair were charged with misdemeanor assault and released. They have a court appearance scheduled for September. 

CAP FRIENDLY: The Tampa Bay Lightning signed center Gemel Smith to a one-year, two-way contract worth $700K at the NHL level. 










NHL Morning Coffee Headlines – July 3, 2019

NHL Morning Coffee Headlines – July 3, 2019

Hurricanes to match the Canadiens offer sheet to Sebastian Aho, Darryl Sutter joining the Ducks coaching staff, and more in today’s NHL morning coffee headlines.

THE NEWS & OBSERVER: Carolina Hurricanes owner Tom Dundon said his club intends to match the five-year, $42.27-million offer sheet Sebastian Aho signed with the Montreal Canadiens. Dundon called the offer a “waste of time”, shrugging off paying out over $21 million in signing bonuses over the next 12 months as “no big deal.”

Dundon insinuated Canadiens general manager Marc Bergevin was manipulated by Aho’s agent Gerry Johansson. He also dismissed talk that Aho wanted to leave the Hurricanes. “I have not heard Sebastian say that. If he said that it would be different but he didn’t. So the fact that an agent said it means that there’s no credibility to it.”

The Hurricanes have until July 8 to match the offer. General manager Don Waddell indicated that would come “in the time frame allotted by the CBA.”

LE JOURNAL DE MONTREAL: Johansson denied manipulating or misleading Bergevin into making that offer sheet to his client. “I do not think I’m so smart and Marc Bergevin is a very bright man.”

The Carolina Hurricanes intend to match the offer sheet Sebastian Aho signed with the Montreal Canadiens (Photo via NHL Images).

SPECTOR’S NOTE:  Bergevin is drawing criticism from fans and pundits for not being more aggressive in his offer. The Canadiens offer was a calculated gamble that failed. However, it leaves them no worse off than before they signed Aho. 

Cap Friendly indicates the Canadiens still have over $11 million in salary-cap room and 12 picks in next year’s draft, including two-second rounders and four fourth rounders. Perhaps their “Plan B” is targetting teams with limited cap space looking to shed salary.

Dundon and Waddell are putting a positive spin on this situation. But if reports are true they were playing hardball with the Aho camp prior to July 1, they’re the reason the 21-year-old center became a tempting target for an offer sheet.

It was rumored the Canes offered eight-years between $6 to $7.5 million per season. They must now pay Aho over $8.4 million annually for three fewer years, making him eligible for UFA status at 26. Dundon might brush off paying over $21 million in signing bonuses but I’ll wager that wasn’t part of his original plan. 

ANAHEIM CALLING: Former Los Angeles Kings coach Darryl Sutter is joining the Anaheim Ducks’ coaching staff. Meanwhile, CBS Sports reports the Ducks signed goaltender Anthony Stolarz to a two-year, $1.5-million contract. 

AZCENTRAL.COM/THE ATHLETIC: The Arizona Coyotes signed forward Lawson Crouse to a three-year contract worth an annual average salary of $1.53 million. Meanwhile, assistant coach Scott Allen won’t be returning with the club. 

WGR550: The Buffalo Sabres re-signed defenseman C.J. Smith to a two-year, $1.4-million contract. 

NHL.COM: The Vancouver Canucks signed Tyler Motte to a one-year, $975K contract. 

TSN: The NHL alleges in a recent court filing they are not to blame for the injuries and health problems of former player Steve Montador. He was “posthumously diagnosed with chronic traumatic encephalopathy (CTE) after his death in 2015.”










Best Signings from Opening Day of 2019 NHL Free-Agent Period

Best Signings from Opening Day of 2019 NHL Free-Agent Period

 










NHL Morning Coffee Headlines – July 2, 2019

NHL Morning Coffee Headlines – July 2, 2019

Some of the fallout from a busy opening day of the 2019 NHL free-agent market in today’s NHL morning coffee headlines.

NHL.COM: Artemi Panarin signing a seven-year deal with the New York Rangers and Sergei Bobrovsky inking a seven-year contract with the Florida Panthers were just some of the notable moves that took place yesterday during the opening hours of the NHL free-agent period. 

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Follow this link for yesterday’s noteworthy unrestricted free agent signings. TSN has a complete list of the day’s UFA and restricted free agent signings. 

NEWSOBSERVER.COM: Carolina Hurricanes general manager Don Waddell said he was taken by surprise by center Sebastian Aho signing an offer sheet with the Montreal Canadiens. During a press conference yesterday, he said he hadn’t had an opportunity yet to discuss the signing with team owner Tom Dundon. The terms of the deal would pay Aho over $21 million in signing bonuses in the first 12 months. 

Will the Carolina Hurricanes match Sebastian Aho’s offer sheet from the Montreal Canadiens (Photo via NHL Images).

The Hurricanes have seven days from the date of Aho’s signing to match the deal. Waddell said the club would make an announcement soon. He appeared unconcerned over the move, saying the signing means he won’t have to spend the entire summer negotiating with the Aho camp. 

THE ATHLETIC: Aho’s agent, Gerry Johannson, believes it won’t be easy for the Hurricanes to match the Canadiens’ front-loaded offer. He also believes his client wants to play in Montreal.  

MONTREAL GAZETTE: Stu Cowan wonders what “Plan B” will be for the Canadiens if the Hurricanes match the Aho offer sheet. 

SPECTOR’S NOTE: While most observers approved of the audacity of the Canadiens’ front-loaded offer, they expect the Hurricanes will match it. Waddell and Dundon could let the Habs twist in the wind until the last minute before matching. Because the Canadiens will be waiting for the Hurricanes’ decision, they’ll be reluctant to invest much more in other potential moves. That’ll hamper their efforts to make other roster moves as the free-agent market becomes depleted. 

THE SCORE: Goaltender Robin Lehner claims his departure from the New York Islanders had nothing to do with him. After signing a one-year, $5-million contract with the Chicago Blackhawks, Lehner denied rumors claiming he walked away from any contract offers from the Isles. “I took a couple of days to think about it, and when I came back and wanted to make something work, they already went for another goalie.”

CHICAGO SUN-TIMES: Lehner’s signing raises questions over the future of Blackhawks starter Corey Crawford. The 34-year-old Crawford was hampered by injuries over the past two seasons. 

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Crawford is now in the final season of his contract. He could become an unrestricted free agent next summer if Lehner outplays him. 

NBC SPORTS BAY AREA: In restricted free agent news, the San Jose Sharks re-signed winger Timo Meier to a four-year, $24-million contract. The annual average value is $6 million.

CBS SPORTS: The Columbus Blue Jackets re-signed defenseman Ryan Murray to a two-year. $9.2 million contract and goaltender Joonas Korpisalo to a one-year deal

NBC SPORTS BOSTON: The Bruins re-signed defenseman Connor Clifton to a three-year, $3-million deal. 










List of NHL Free-Agent Signings – July 1, 2019

List of NHL Free-Agent Signings – July 1, 2019

Check out the listing of today’s notable NHL free-agent signings. This will be updated throughout the day as signings become official.

The Chicago Blackhawks signed goaltender Robin Lehner to a one-year, $5-million contract. 

The New York Islanders sign left wing Anders Lee to a seven-year, $49-million contract. The Isles also signed goaltender Semyon Varlamov to a four-year contract worth $5 million per season. 

The Carolina Hurricanes sign goaltender Petr Mrazek to a two-year, $6.5-million contract. 

The Montreal Canadiens have tendered an offer sheet to Carolina Hurricanes center Sebastian Aho. The proposed contract is for five years, with an average annual value of $8.454 million. 

 

New York Rangers sign left winger Artemi Panarin to a seven-year, $81.5 million contract. The annual average value is $11.6 million.

Florida Panthers signed goaltender Sergei Bobrovsky to a seven-year, $70 million deal. They also signed winger Brett Connolly to a four-year, $13-million contract, defenseman Anton Stralman to a three-year, $16.5 million contract and forward Noel Acciari to a three-year, $5-million contract. 

Artemi Panarin signs a seven-year contract with the New York Rangers (Photo via NHL Images).

The Nashville Predators sign center Matt Duchene to a seven-year, $56-million contract.

Dallas Stars sign center/winger Joe Pavelski to a three-year, $21-million contract. The Stars also signed winger Corey Perry on a one-year, bonus-laden contract worth up to $3.25 million. They also signed defenseman Andrej Sekera to a one-year contract with a $1.5 million base salary and $500K in bonuses.

Minnesota Wild sign winger Mats Zuccarello to a five-year, $30-million contract. The Wild also sign forward Ryan Hartman to a two-year contract with an annual average value of $1.9 million.

Vancouver Canucks sign defenseman Tyler Myers to a five-year, $30-million contract. The Canucks also signed blueliner Jordie Benn to a two-year, $4-million contract and rearguard Oscar Fantenberg to a one-year, $850K deal. 

Pittsburgh Penguins sign forward Brandon Tanev to a six-year contract with an AAV of $3.5 million. 

Columbus Blue Jackets sign forward Gustav Nyquist to a four-year, $22-million contract. 

Washington Capitals sign forward Richard Panik to a four-year, $10-million contract and forward Garnet Hathaway to a four-year, $6-million deal. 

Colorado Avalanche sign winger Joonas Donskoi to a three-year contract estimated at around $3.5 million per season. They also sign winger Pierre-Edouard Bellemare to a two-year, $3.6-million contract

Chicago Blackhawks sign center Ryan Carpenter to a three-year, $3-million contract. 

Detroit Red Wings sign center Valtteri Filppula to a two-year, $6-million contract. They also signed defenseman Patrik Nemeth to a two-year deal. 

St. Louis Blues sign forward Nathan Walker to a two-year, $1.4-million contract. 

New Jersey Devils sign winger Wayne Simmonds to a one-year, $5-million contract. 

Edmonton Oilers signed goaltender Mike Smith to a one-year, $2-million contract and sign forward Markus Granlund to a one-year, $1.3-million contract. They also re-signed winger Alex Chiasson to a two-year deal worth $2.15-million per season. 

Ottawa Senators sign Ron Hainsey to a one-year, $3.5-million contract and winger Tyler Ennis to a one-year, $800K contract. 

Toronto Maple Leafs sign center Jason Spezza to a one-year, $700K contract.  

Calgary Flames sign goaltender Cam Talbot to sign a one-year. $2.75-million contract.

Montreal Canadiens sign goaltender Keith Kinkaid to a one-year, $1.75-million contract. 

Tampa Bay Lightning sign goaltender Curtis McElhinney to a two-year, $2.6-million contract. They also signed defenseman Luke Schenn to a one-year, $700K contract. 

Buffalo Sabres sign forward Curtis Lazar,  goaltender Andrew Hammond, and defenseman John Gilmour to one-year contracts each worth $700K.  The Sabres also acquire forward Jimmy Vesey from the New York Rangers in exchange for a third-round pick in 2021.

Winnipeg Jets sign defenseman Nathan Beaulieu to a one-year, $1-million contract. 

Trade Alert: The New York Rangers trade Jimmy Vesey to the Buffalo Sabres in exchange for a third-round pick in 2021.










NHL Rumor Update (Part Two) – July 1, 2019

NHL Rumor Update (Part Two) – July 1, 2019

With the NHL free-agent market opening shortly, here’s a quick look at the latest rumors.

UPDATE ON PANARIN

THE ATHLETIC: Aaron Portzline reports Artemi Panarin rejected the Columbus Blue Jackets’ last-ditch effort to sign him. The offer was reportedly an eight-year deal worth $96 million. He’s believed considering seven-year offers from the New York Rangers and New York Islanders.

NEW YORK POST’s Larry Brooks reports being told the Rangers aren’t out of the bidding for Panarin. However, he has received “higher offers.” Remains to be seen if they’ll up their bid.

OFFER SHEET FOR AHO?

Could Carolina Hurricanes center Sebastian Aho receive an offer sheet? (Photo via NHL Images)

TSN’s Pierre LeBrun reports the Carolina Hurricanes offered restricted free agent Sebastian Aho an eight-year contract worth $7.5 million annually. His camp countered with five years at an annual average value of $9.5 million. LeBrun wonders if Aho gets an offer sheet, saying it’s definitely being contemplated.

NEWSOBSERVER.com’s Chip Alexander reports Hurricanes GM Don Waddell recently said he’d match any offer sheet for Aho.

LEE TO GET BIG MONEY?

THE ATHLETIC’s Craig Custance said he’s hearing Anders Lee could top $9 million AAV when he signs today. The Blue Jackets aren’t expected to be part of the bidding. 

LATEST ON THE LEAFS AND SENATORS.

Pierre LeBrun reports the Toronto Maple Leafs received plenty of calls on center Nazem Kadri over the last 2-3 weeks. While they’re not shopping him they’re willing to listen to offers. Will keep Kadri if they don’t get an offer they can’t refuse.

LeBrun’s colleague Darren Dreger reports Cody Ceci has verbally agreed to a one-year, $4.5-million contract with the Leafs. He was acquired today from the Ottawa Senators.

Meanwhile, Bob McKenzie reports former Leafs Ron Hainsey and Tyler Ennis are expected to sign with the Senators today. LeBrun said Hainsey’s AAV will be $3.5 million.