NHL Morning Coffee Headlines – August 5, 2018

NHL Morning Coffee Headlines – August 5, 2018

Ducks re-sign John Gibson, Golden Knights avoid arbitration with William Karlsson. Details and more in your NHL morning coffee headlines.

LOS ANGELES TIMES: The Anaheim Ducks had a lovely wedding gift for goaltender John Gibson on Saturday as he signed an eight-year contract, $51.2-million contract extension. The deal, which begins in 2019-20, carries an annual average value of $6.4 million. Cap Friendly indicates it also comes with a modified no-trade clause from 2021-22 through 2026-27. This deal will also make him the league’s fifth-highest paid goalie.

Anaheim Ducks re-sign goaltender John Gibson to an eight-year extension. (Photo via NHL Images)

SPECTOR’S NOTE:  Ducks general manager Bob Murray said he and everyone in the Ducks’ organization believes in Gibson, who has a career record of 99 wins, 55 losses and 20 overtime losses, with a 2.29 goals-against average, a .923 save percentage with 16 shutouts.

While Murray points out the 25-year-old netminder is entering his prime, he’s also been hampered by injuries and his playoff stats (11-13 in 26 playoff appearances, a 2.80 GAA and .912 SP) aren’t as impressive as his regular-season numbers. If Gibson can avoid serious injury and can improve his postseason numbers over the course of his deal, it’ll be considered a wise investment by Murray. 

LAS VEGAS REVIEW-JOURNAL: The Vegas Golden Knights avoided salary arbitration with center William Karlsson by signing him to a one-year, $5.25-million contract.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: A worthwhile agreement for both sides. Karlsson, the final player slated for an arbitration hearing this summer,  gets a hefty pay raise over last season’s $1 million salary after tallying a career-best 43 goals. Meanwhile, the Golden Knights aren’t on the hook for very long if he fails to replicate that remarkable performance.

Basically, this is a “show-me” contract. Karlsson will once again be a restricted free agent with arbitration rights next summer. If he proves he’s no one-year wonder in 2018-19, he’ll be in line for a lucrative long-term deal.

LIGHTHOUSE HOCKEY: Former New York Islanders forward Shane Prince has signed with HC Davos in Switzerland. 

THE STAR: Hockey analytics guru Rob Vollman says NHL teams still aren’t as invested in advanced stats. “I have had many, many discussions with many teams trying to persuade them to build an analytics department,” Vollman said. “It’s a tough battle.” The Toronto Maple Leafs are among the few clubs to have one. Vollman has published a book titled “Stat Shot: A Fan’s Guide to Hockey Analytics.”

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Overall, the NHL tends to approach new ideas with skepticism. It has a conservative mindset that is largely resistant to change. It’ll likely take a couple of teams with analytic departments like those suggested by Vollman to achieve significant on-ice success before other clubs begin emulating them.


NHL Morning Coffee Headlines – November 17, 2016

NHL Morning Coffee Headlines – November 17, 2016

Nicklas Backstrom & T.J. Oshie led the Washington Capitals to a 7-1 thumping of the Pittsburgh Penguins.

Nicklas Backstrom & T.J. Oshie led the Washington Capitals to a 7-1 thumping of the Pittsburgh Penguins.

Game recaps, Stamkos, Hall & Gaudreau sidelined, CBA extension offer to NHLPA & more in your NHL morning coffee headlines. 

NHL.COM: Nicklas Backstrom scored twice and set up three others and T.J. Oshie had a four-point game to lead the Washington Capitals to a 7-1 beatdown of the Pittsburgh Penguins.  Pittsburgh goalie Matt Murray was forced from the game with a head injury but said afterward he was fine. 

Michael Frolik’s overtime goal lifted the Calgary Flames to a 2-1 win over the Arizona Coyotes. Earlier in the day, the Flames learned left wing Johnny Gaudreau will likely miss four-to-six weeks following surgery to repair a broken finger suffered in the Flames’ previous game against the Minnesota Wild. 

TAMPA BAY TIMES:  Lightning captain Steven Stamkos is out indefinitely after suffering a torn lateral meniscus in his right knee. 

NJ.COM:  New Jersey Devils left wing Taylor Hall underwent surgery on his left knee to repair a torn meniscus and is sidelined three-four weeks. 

THE DETROIT NEWS: Red Wings forward Darren Helm is out for a minimum of six weeks to a dislocated left shoulder. 

SPORTSNET: Sources claim the NHL made an offer to the NHL Players Association to participate in the 2018 Winter Olympics in South Korea in exchange for extending the expiration date of the current collective bargaining agreement from 2022 to 2025. 

SPECTOR’S NOTE: It’s an interesting proposal from the league, one that isn’t unprecedented. In 1998, the league and the PA agreed to extend the CBA expiration to 2004 to ensure Olympic participation and the expansion into Atlanta, Columbus, Minnesota and Nashville.

The problem, however, is accepting this proposal means the players would be stuck with the highly unpopular escrow clawbacks from their salaries for three more years. While there’s no word yet from the PA, early speculation suggests the players will reject that offer. 

USA TODAY:  Kevin Allen reports some NHL players could be trying to find away to game their advanced stats numbers to their advantage. “Corsi measures all shot attempts and has now become the industry standard as a proxy of puck possession.” writes Allen. “Take a shot on goal, from anywhere on the ice, even if your team is struggling to move the puck into the offensive zone, and it will help your Corsi.”

SPECTOR’S NOTE: It’s an interesting piece worth reading. While there’s no obvious evidence that some players are gaming the analytics to their advantage, the possibility certainly exists. I’m sure this will be cited in debates between proponents and critics of analytics. As I’ve frequently said, advanced stats are a useful tool for measuring performance, but they’re not the end-all and be-all. 

NEWSDAY:  New York Islanders general manager Garth Snow gave head coach Jack Capuano a vote of confidence. The club’s early-season struggles have generated calls among the Isles faithful for Capuano’s dismissal. 

SPECTOR’S NOTE: I think a bigger share of the blame belongs to Snow. He allowed long-time Islanders Kyle Okposo, Frans Nielsen and Matt Martin depart via free agency last summer. Their absences have adversely affected the Isles’ performance this season. Free-agent addition Andrew Shaw Ladd’s been a bust thus far (three points in 16 games).

ESPN.COM: The Anaheim Ducks traded forward Michael Sgarbossa to the Florida Panthers in exchange for forward Logan Shaw.