NHL Morning Coffee Headlines – June 21, 2023
The Hockey Hall of Fame Class of 2023 will be announced today, the Canadiens re-sign Sean Monahan, an update on Carey Price, the Flames allow Milan Lucic to speak with other teams, and more in today’s NHL Morning Coffee Headlines.
NHL.com: The Hockey Hall of Fame will vote on its Class of 2023 inductees today. They will be announced at 3 pm ET.
Goaltender Henrik Lundqvist is expected to be among that group. This is his first year of eligibility.
Other former NHL stars among the candidates include Tom Barrasso, Rod Brind’Amour, Corey Crawford, Patrik Elias, Theo Fleury, Sergei Gonchar, Curtis Joseph, Reggie Leach, Alexander Mogilny, Chris Osgood, Jeremy Roenick, Keith Tkachuk, Pierre Turgeon, Mike Vernon, Justin Williams and Henrik Zetterberg.
SPECTOR’S NOTE: I will continue stumping for Butch Goring until he’s inducted or I shuffle off this mortal coil, whichever comes first.
MONTREAL HOCKEY NOW: The Canadiens yesterday re-signed Sean Monahan to a one-year, $1.985 million contract extension. The 28-year-old center was slated to become an unrestricted free agent (UFA) on July 1.
SPECTOR’S NOTE: After several injury-plagued years in Calgary, Monahan was enjoying a bounce-back performance this season until suffering a season-ending lower-body injury in December. He was a good addition to the rebuilding Canadiens, acting as a mentor to their young players while providing experienced depth at center.
This signing allows Monahan to continue playing a prominent role with the Canadiens and perhaps improve his stock in next summer’s free-agent market. He could also become a valuable asset for the Habs at next year’s trade deadline if he has a healthy and productive season.
MONTREAL GAZETTE: Speaking of the Canadiens, long-time goalie Carey Price and his family have put their Montreal-area home up for sale and are moving to Kelowna, BC. Price, 35, has three years remaining on his contract but is unofficially retired because of a knee injury.
SPECTOR’S NOTE: Price carries an average annual value of $10.5 million. It’s expected the Canadiens will place him on long-term injury reserve, providing them with additional cap space to spend on other players this summer. There’s also speculation that Price could take up a player development role with the Habs.
CALGARY HOCKEY NOW: The Flames are allowing Milan Lucic to speak with other clubs about a new contract. The 35-year-old winger is slated to become a UFA on July 1.
SPECTOR’S NOTE: Lucic is no longer the dominating power forward of his youth but he played a significant leadership for Canada during their gold-medal run at the 2023 IIHF World Championships. That could entice playoff contenders seeking veteran leadership and toughness to sign him to an affordable one-year contract.
TORONTO SUN: Terry Koshan cites a “well-placed source” dismissing rumors of the Maple Leafs buying out defenseman T.J. Brodie. He has one season left on his contract with an AAV of $5 million and a full no-trade clause until July 1 when it becomes a 10-team no-trade clause for 2023-24.
SPECTOR’S NOTE: Someone in the media was likely musing over how the Leafs could garner some cap relief and suggested buying out Brodie. It got shared on social media and twisted around into the Leafs buying him out.
OTTAWA SUN: Bruce Garrioch reports it will take until September before the sale of the Senators to incoming owner Michael Andlauer is completed. Until then, he cannot make any changes to the club. That means he will have no say over possible offseason roster moves by general manager Pierre Dorion.
SPECTOR’S NOTE: Dorion’s biggest potential move is his anticipated trade of Alex DeBrincat. Garrioch reports the Senators would like a first-round pick as part of the return for the 25-year-old winger, who refuses to ink a long-term extension with the club.
BUFFALO HOCKEY NOW: The Sabres have signed forward Zemgus Girgensons to a one-year contract extension worth $2.5 million. This move was made to preserve the club’s leadership group.
SPECTOR’S NOTE: Girgensons is the longest-serving active member on the Sabres roster, having played nine seasons.
ARIZONA SPORTS: The Coyotes yesterday placed forward Zack Kassian and defenseman Patrik Nemeth on waivers for the purpose of buying out their contracts.
TSN: Player agent Ray Petkau confirmed clients James Reimer of the San Jose Sharks and Thomas Greiss of the St. Louis Blues will be hitting the UFA market on July 1.
DETROIT HOCKEY NOW: Red Wings general manager Steve Yzerman doesn’t anticipate trading his two first-round picks in the upcoming 2023 NHL Draft (June 28-29) in Nashville. The Red Wings hold picks No. 9 and No. 17.
SPECTOR’S NOTE: Yzerman could change his mind if a rival GM makes a tempting offer but it doesn’t appear as though he’s actively shopping those picks.
NEW YORK POST: The Islanders signed restricted free agent defenseman Samuel Bolduc to a two-year, one-way contract worth an AAV of $800K.