NHL Morning Coffee Headlines – October 25, 2021

NHL Morning Coffee Headlines – October 25, 2021

Red Wings rookie Lucas Raymond joins some elite company, the Sharks and Wild are no longer undefeated, the Islanders’ Ilya Sorokin collects his second straight shutout and more in today’s NHL morning coffee headlines.

GAME RECAPS

NHL.COM: Detroit Red Wings rookie Lucas Raymond tallied his first NHL hat track and collected an assist in a 6-3 victory over the Chicago Blackhawks. The 19-year-old joins Steve Yzerman as the only teenagers in franchise history to tally a hat trick. Raymond, Yzerman and Gordie Howe are also the only teens in Wings history to net four points in a game. Dylan Larkin collected three assists and Tyler Bertuzzi added a goal and two assists in his return to the lineup. The Blackhawks got Erik Gustafsson and Ryan Carpenter back from COVID protocol but Jujhar Khaira and Riley Stillman were added to the protocol before game time.

Detroit Red Wings forward Lucas Raymond (NHL Images).

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Now the Red Wings general manager, Yzerman draft Raymond with the fourth-overall pick in the 2020 NHL Draft. The youngster leads all rookies this season with four goals and seven points. Meanwhile, the Blackhawks are winless in six and have yet to hold a lead in a game this season. . Patrick Kane also missed this game as he remained in COVID protocol.

The San Jose Sharks suffered their first defeat of the season as the Boston Bruins held on for a 4-3 win. Brad Marchand, David Pastrnak and Patrice Bergeron each had two points for the Bruins. The Sharks made it close with third-period goals by Tomas Hertl and Timo Meier.

Romas Josi collected four points (1 goal, three assists), Ryan Johansen scored twice and rookie goalie Connor Ingram made 33 saves in his NHL debut as the Nashville Predators downed the Minnesota Wild 5-2, handing the latter their first loss of the season. Predators forwards Matt Duchene and Filip Forsberg each had two points. Nashville winger Eeli Tolvanen left the game with an upper-body injury.

New York Islanders goaltender Ilya Sorokin collected his second straight shutout to blank the Vegas Golden Knights 2-0. Sorokin kicked out 42 shots while teammates Josh Bailey and Mathew Barzal scored the only goals. The Golden Knights’ record stands at 1-4-0 to start the season.

HEADLINES

OTTAWA SUN: Senators goaltender Matt Murray was placed on injured reserve with a head/neck injury following a collision with New York Rangers winger Chris Kreider on Saturday. There is no timetable for his return.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Injuries continue to dog Murray, who missed 16 games last season with lower-body injuries.

NBC SPORTS BAY AREA: Speaking of the Senators, they sent a seventh-round pick in the 2022 draft to the San Jose Sharks for center Dylan Gambrell.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Trade rumors linked the Senators to a center named Dylan. Many assumed it was the Blackhawks’ Dylan Strome. Injuries to Colin White and Shane Pinto made this move necessary for the Senators to shore up their depth at center.

THE DALLAS MORNING NEWS: John Klingberg is expected to return to the lineup tonight against the Columbus Blue Jackets. The defenseman has been sidelined by a lower-body injury since their season opener on Oct. 14.

SPORTSNET: Anaheim Ducks captain Ryan Getzlaf was fined $1,000.00 for a dangerous trip of Minnesota Wild center Joel Eriksson Ek on Oct. 23.

NHL: The department of player safety also fined Philadelphia Flyers winger Nicolas Aube-Kubel $2,687.50 for kneeing Florida Panthers winger Mason Marchment on Oct. 23.










NHL Morning Coffee Headlines – July 16, 2021

NHL Morning Coffee Headlines – July 16, 2021

The Avalanche trade Ryan Graves to the Devils, the Panthers buy out Keith Yandle, Ben Bishop agrees to waive NMC for the expansion draft, Leafs give Zach Hyman permission to speak to other clubs, and more in today’s NHL morning coffee headlines.

THE DENVER POST/NORTHJERSEY.COM: The Colorado Avalanche last night traded defenseman Ryan Graves to the New Jersey Devils in exchange for forward Mikhail Maltsev and a second-round pick in the 2021 NHL draft.

The Colorado Avalanche trade Ryan Graves to the New Jersey Devils (NHL Images).

SPECTOR’S NOTE: The Avalanche risked losing Graves to the Seattle Kraken for nothing in next week’s expansion draft. They get a promising young forward in Maltsev and replace the second-round pick they shipped to the New York Islanders last fall for Devon Toews. The move also gives the Avs some much-needed salary-cap relief, replacing Graves’ $3.21 million annual average value with Maltsev’s $925K for 2021-22.

Graves, 26, established himself as a quality top-four defenseman during his tenure with the Avalanche. The 6’5”, 220-pounder brings a good mix of size, physical play and a solid defensive game to the Devils’ blueline.

NBC SPORTS: The Florida Panthers have bought out the remaining two years of Keith Yandle’s contract. The 34-year-old defenseman had an annual average value of $6.35 million. The first year of the buyout will count as $2.34 million against the Panthers’ cap for 2021-22, jumping to $5.3 million for 2022-23, and dropping to $1.24 million annually for the final two seasons.

They also re-signed winger Anthony Duclair to a three-year, $9 million contract and defenseman Gustav Forsling to a three-year, $7.98 million deal.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Things were coming to a head between Yandle and the Panthers this season. He was nearly a healthy scratch to start the season, which would’ve threatened his Ironman consecutive games streak. He was scratched from three postseason games. This move freed up immediate cap room to address other needs.

THE DALLAS MORNING NEWS: Stars goaltender Ben Bishop agreed to waive his no-movement clause for the upcoming expansion draft. That will allow the Stars to protect goalie Anton Khudobin as promising Jake Oettinger is exempt from the draft.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Bishop missed all of this season recovering from a knee injury. His lengthy injury history likely means the Kraken will pass on selecting him in next week’s draft.

THE SCORE: cited TSN’s Darren Dreger reporting the Toronto Maple Leafs are allowing Zach Hyman to speak with other teams. The 29-year-old left-winger is slated to become an unrestricted free agent on July 28.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: There’s a chance the Leafs could match the best offer but that appears slim. I’ll have more on Hyman in today’s Rumor Mill.

TSN: Darren Dreger speculates Shea Weber’s situation could end in a dispute between the NHL and NHLPA if the league doesn’t allow the Canadiens to put the 35-year-old defenseman on long-term injury reserve. Weber’s career is in jeopardy from the effects of multiple injuries suffered over the past four seasons. He’s reportedly expected to miss the entire 2021-22 season.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Everyone is waiting for clarity on this before deciding what to do next. Weber is reportedly getting a second medical opinion. Dreger indicated the timing of this situation is what’s clouding the issue with the expansion draft coming up.

THE SCORE: Columbus Blue Jackets goaltender Elvis Merzlikins said Matiss Kivlenieks died a hero during the memorial service for his late teammate. Kivlenieks died at age 24 from chest trauma from a fireworks mortar blast. The tube tilted and started firing toward a hot tub. Merzlikins and his pregnant wife were nearby. He said the young goaltender sacrificed his life to protect others

SPECTOR’S NOTE: RIP Matiss, your last save was your biggest.

CALGARY SUN: The Flames signed winger Brett Ritchie to a one-year, $900K contract.

THE MERCURY NEWS: The San Jose Sharks re-signed center Dylan Gambrell to a one-year, $1.1 million contract.










NHL Rumor Mill – May 12, 2020

NHL Rumor Mill – May 12, 2020

Some suggestions to help the Sharks regain their playoff contender status and Travis Dermott’s future with the Leafs in today’s NHL rumor mill.

SUGGESTED MOVE TO IMPROVE THE SHARKS

THE ATHLETIC (subscription required): Kevin Kurz last week proposed a nine-step plan for turning the San Jose Sharks back into a playoff contender next season.

Among his suggestions was finding a suitable backup goaltender to pair with starter Martin Jones. Assuming Jones isn’t traded or bought out, Kurz doesn’t believe they should bring back Aaron Dell, who’s slated to become an unrestricted free agent at season’s end. He advocates signing a free-agent goalie on a one- or two-year deal to allow time for Alexei Melnichuk’s development. Former Shark Thomas Greiss could be available.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Greiss has solid numbers as a career backup and could be open to a return to San Jose. He could provide help offset Jones’ inconsistent streaks. 

Should the San Jose Sharks attempt to trade Brent Burns in the off-season? (Photo via NHL Images)

Kurz also recommends Sharks general manager Doug Wilson trade Brent Burns or Marc-Edouard Vlasic. Burns has a three-team trade list while Vlasic has a full no-movement clause. Kurz feels there’s reason to believe Vlasic would accept a trade to his native Montreal or perhaps Toronto, which could be in the market for a left-shot defenseman. Burns, however, could be the more likely trade candidate as his contract provides a little more trade flexibility and he’d have more value than Vlasic.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Trading either guy isn’t impossible, but there remain several major stumbling blocks. Both are in their thirties (Burns is 35, Vlasic 33) and their best seasons are behind them. They also carry long-term contracts with hefty annual salary-cap hits ($8 million for Burns, $7 million for Vlasic) that will be difficult for most clubs (like Toronto) to absorb. As Kurz noted, if they won’t waive their trade clauses, Wilson’s hands will be tied. At this point, I don’t either guy agreeing to a trade.

Kurz also advocated Wilson trade two of Kevin Labanc, Marcus Sorensen, and Dylan Gambrell. With the freed-up salary cap space from this move and moving Burns or Vlasic, he suggested signing a forward who can score, such as Vancouver’s Tyler Toffoli, Nashville’s Craig Smith or Mikael Granlund, or Florida’s Evgenii Dadonov.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Labanc is a restricted free agent with arbitration rights while Sorensen and Gambrell are signed through next season at a combined $2.2 million. Coming off a career-high 56-point performance, Labanc bet on himself and lost last summer by agreeing to a one-year, $1-million contract. With only 33 points in 70 games this season, arbitration still won’t provide him much leverage to land a lucrative long-term deal. He could become a trade candidate if the contract talks bog down.

If Wilson can trade Burns or Vlasic, he’ll free up cap space to sign a scoring forward. Considering the obstacles in trading either blueliner, it will be quite a challenge to pull that off.

DOES LEHTONEN’S SIGNING SPELL THE END OF DERMOTT AS A LEAF?

SPORTSNET: In a recent mailbag segment, Luke Fox was asked if the Toronto Maple Leafs’ recent signing of defenseman Mikko Lehtonen spells danger for Travis Dermott’s future as a Leaf.

Fox noted Leafs GM Kyle Dubas indicating the club needs to figure out where Lehtonen slots in on the blueline. He’s a left-shot rearguard who can play either side. While he likes playing on the right side, his strengths appear on the left.

While Dubas could trade Dermott, Fox feels the smart move is to re-sign him to a reasonable bridge deal. He’s coming off his entry-level contract and lacks arbitration rights.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Agreed. Dermott will be an affordable re-signing and has a couple of NHL seasons under his belt. If Lehtonen struggles to adjust to the NHL pace, it’ll be worthwhile to have Dermott around.