NHL Morning Coffee Headlines – November 2, 2020

NHL Morning Coffee Headlines – November 2, 2020

The Hurricanes avoid arbitration with Warren Foegele, the Oilers sign Dominik Kahun, plus the updated arbitration list, the latest on Travis Green and more in today’s NHL morning coffee headlines.

THE NEWS & OBSERVER: The Carolina Hurricanes avoided arbitration with winger Warren Foegele, reaching an agreement on a one-year, $2.15 million contract.

Caroline Hurricanes forward Warren Foegele (NHL Images).

SPECTOR’S NOTE: A reasonable short-term deal for Foegele, who tallied 13 goals and 30 points in 68 games last season. He’ll be a restricted free agent with arbitration rights next summer. Cap Friendly indicates the Hurricanes have over $80.5 million invested in 22 players for 2020-21.

NHLPA.COM: Five players have arbitration hearings slated for this month. New York Rangers center Ryan Strome’s hearing is on Nov. 5, Rangers winger Brendan Lemieux and New York Islanders defenseman Ryan Pulock are on Nov. 6, Ottawa Senators defenseman Christian Jaros is set for Nov. 7, and Florida Panthers blueliner MacKenzie Weegar is on Nov. 8.

EDMONTON JOURNAL: The Oilers have come to terms with free-agent winger Dominik Kahun. Sportsnet’s Elliotte Friedman reported it’s a one-year deal worth $975K and will be officially announced today.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Kahun spent the last two seasons with the Chicago Blackhawks, Pittsburgh Penguins and Buffalo Sabres, netting a respectable 68 points in 138 games. The 25-year-old winger is a boyhood friend and former childhood teammate of Oilers star Leon Draisaitl. They were frequent linemates for Germany in several international tournaments, including the World Championships. It remains to be seen if they’ll get skating together with the Oilers.

THE PROVINCE: The effects of COVID-19 upon NHL revenue are affecting the Vancouver Canucks efforts to sign head coach Travis Green to a contract extension. Green has a year remaining on his current contract. “We’ll continue to work at it, but everybody is really in a holding pattern and we’re not the only team,” said GM Jim Benning.

EISHOCKEY NEWS: Korbinian Holzer has signed with KHL team Automobilist Yekaterinburg. He hasn’t ruled out returning to the NHL but would seek a role where he’d get plenty of ice time.

The 32-year-old defenseman said there are interested parties but everyone is being cautious.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Holzer spent eight seasons since 2010-11 in the NHL, most of those with the Anaheim Ducks. He has 27 points in 206 NHL contests.

THE ATHLETIC: Seattle Kraken GM Ron Francis believes a flat salary cap for 2021-22 could be beneficial for his club as they build their roster. He noted some cap-strapped teams used contract buyouts and trades to alleviate their situations during the current offseason. Francis also indicated his club will remain patient in naming their first head coach.

NHL.COM: The National Hockey League yesterday honored Val James, who became the first American-born black player to play in the NHL on Nov. 1, 1981. James, now 63, played 10 regular-season and playoff games with the Buffalo Sabres in 1981-82 and four games with the Toronto Maple Leafs in 1986-87. He also scored the goal that gave the Rochester Americans the 1983 Calder Cup. James credited the late coach John Brophy and former NHL coach Mike Keenan for believing in him and helping him during his playing career.










NHL Rumor Mill – October 26, 2020

NHL Rumor Mill – October 26, 2020

A look at potential destinations for the top remaining UFAs in today’s NHL rumor mill.

NBC SPORTS: Adam Gretz examines some possible landing spots for unrestricted free agent forwards Mike Hoffman, Anthony Duclair, Mikael Granlund, Dominik Kahun and Carl Soderberg.

Could Mike Hoffman sign with the Nashville Predators? (NHL Images)

Gretz suggests the Boston Bruins and Columbus Blue Jackets as two clubs that could use Hoffman’s offensive skills, but both clubs lack sufficient salary-cap space. The Bruins also have restricted free agent winger Jake DeBrusk to re-sign while the Blue Jackets need to sign first-line center Pierre-Luc Dubois. The Nashville Predators are a more likely candidate as they’ve shed considerable cap space and need a scoring forward.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: The Predators appear to be the best destination for Hoffman. Cap Friendly indicates they have over $12.9 million in cap space with restricted free agent Luke Kunin to re-sign, so they’ve got plenty of room. I think Predators general manager David Poile could be trying to out-wait Hoffman in the hope the winger will lower his rumored asking price of a $6 million contract for next season.

Other clubs with salary cap room (Detroit, New Jersey, Ottawa) could also use more scoring punch. However, they’re not playoff contenders like the Preds and could be unwilling to invest in a player they’ll only have for one season. Given Hoffman’s messy departure from the Senators, I doubt he’ll be returning to Ottawa except as a visiting player.

Gretz suggests two options for Duclair. He could sign a short-term deal with a rebuilding club like Detroit or New Jersey where he’ll get big minutes and could be moved to a contender by the trade deadline. Another is signing a short-term deal with a contender like the Dallas Stars, who could use a little more offense.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: As with Hoffman, I wonder if the Red Wings and Devils would be keen to sign a player like Duclair to a one-year deal if they’re only going to move him for a draft pick or prospect at the trade deadline. The Wings are already well-stocked with draft picks for 2021 with six in the first three rounds, including three second-rounders.

The Stars could use a little more punch at left wing but they’ve only got $4.1 million in cap space with Roope Hintz to re-sign. Adding another forward, even one on an affordable deal, would be a tight fit.

Gretz suggests the Blues Jackets as a fit for Granlund. He also thinks Penguins GM Jim Rutherford has an opportunity to correct his mistake of trading away Kahun last season by bringing him back as a free agent to bolster his club’s bottom-six forwards.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Granlund will have to accept a significant pay cut to sign with the Jackets. They’ve got $12.9 million in cap space but a big chunk of that will be taken up by Dubois’ next contract.

The Penguins have $1.3 million in cap space. They could squeeze in Kahen for under $1 million but that won’t leave much wiggle room for other moves as needed during the season. However, they could free up space by demoting one of the four forwards they currently have who are earning $750K or less for next season.

The Vancouver Canucks would be a good destination for Soderberg provided the Canucks could free up some salary by finding a way to dump Brandon Sutter or Jay Beagle. Teams that need depth at center like Minnesota or Nashville could also be landing spots.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Rule out the Canucks for Soderberg. They’re over the cap by $1.5 million. GM Jim Benning declined to buy out Sutter over the weekend, citing his leadership and defensive skills. Beagle carries a five-team no-trade list and a $3 million cap hit for the next two seasons. I don’t see him going anywhere.

The Wild have plenty of depth centers since acquiring Marcus Johansson, Nick Bjugstad and Nick Bonino. What they need is a true first-line center, which Soderberg isn’t. Maybe the Predators turn to him if they lose out on Hoffman.










NHL Trade Deadline Tracker – February 24, 2020

NHL Trade Deadline Tracker – February 24, 2020

The NHL Trade Deadline is 3 pm ET today. This listing will be updated regularly throughout the day until all trade activity is complete.

Anaheim Ducks trade defenseman Korbinian Holzer to the Nashville Predators for defenseman Matt Irwin. 

Washington Capitals trade defenseman Christian Djoos to the Anaheim Ducks in exchange for Daniel Sprong. 

Montreal Canadiens trade Nick Cousins to the Vegas Golden Knights. Details to follow…

Calgary Flames trade Brandon Davidson to the San Jose Sharks for future considerations

New Jersey Devils trade goaltender Louis Domingue to the Vancouver Canucks in exhange for goalie Zane McIntyre

Tampa Bay Lightning acquire Barclay Goodrow from the San Jose Sharks for a first-round pick.

New York Rangers traded defenseman Brady Skjei to the Carolina Hurricanes for the Hurricanes’ first-round pick in 2020. 

Columbus Blue Jackets acquire Devin Shore from the Anaheim Ducks in exchange for Sonny Milano

Vegas Golden Knights acquired goaltender Robin Lehner from the Chicago Blackhawks for Malcolm Subban, Slava Demin and a 2nd round pick. 

New Jersey Devils trade defenseman Sami Vatanen to the Carolina Hurricanes for winger Janne Kuokkanen and a second-round pick. 

Buffalo Sabres trade Conor Sheary and Evan Rodrigues to the Pittsburgh Penguins for Dominik Kahun. 

Calgary Flames acquire defenseman Erik Gustafsson from the Chicago Blackhawks for a third-round pick

Los Angeles Kings ship defenseman Derek Forbort to the Calgary Flames for a fourth-round pick. 

Edmonton Oilers trade a fifth-round pick in 2021 to the Ottawa Senators for Tyler Ennis.

Edmonton Oilers acquired Andreas Athanasiou and Ryan Kuffner from the Detroit Red Wings for Sam Gagner, a second-round pick in 2020 and a second-rounder in 2021. 

Boston Bruins trade Danton Heinen to the Anaheim Ducks for Nick Ritchie.

Buffalo Sabres acquire winger Wayne Simmonds from the New Jersey Devils for a conditional fifth-rounder in 2021. 

Philadelphia Flyers acquire center Derek Grant from the Anaheim Ducks for minor-league center Kyle Crisuolo and a fourth-round pick in 2020. 

Toronto Maple Leafs trade goaltender Michael Hutchinson to the Colorado Avalanche for defenseman Calle Rosen.

Pittsburgh Penguins acquire Patrick Marleau from the San Jose Sharks for a conditional third-round pick in 2020. The pick becomes a second-rounder if the Penguins win the Stanley Cup. 

Montreal Canadiens trade center Nate Thompson to the Philadelphia Flyers for a fifth-round pick in 2021. 

Florida Panthers trade center Vincent Trocheck to the Carolina Hurricanes in exchange for forwards Erik Haula, Lucas Wallmark and prospects Chase Priskie and Eetu Luostarinen.

New York Islanders acquire center Jean-Gabriel Pageau to the New York Islanders for a first-round pick (lottery protected) in 2020, a  second-rounder in 2020, and a third in 2022. There are conditions attached to all picks. The Islanders re-sign him to a six-year contract extension.

Ottawa Senators trade Vladislav Namestnikov to the Colorado Avalanche for a fourth-round pick in the 2021 NHL draft. 

Detroit Red Wings trade defenseman Mike Green to the Edmonton Oilers for sidelined forward Kyle Brodziak and a conditional draft pick.










NHL Morning Coffee Headlines – January 21, 2020

NHL Morning Coffee Headlines – January 21, 2020

Game recaps, three stars of the week, plus the latest on Connor McDavid, Jacob Markstrom, and more in today’s NHL morning coffee headlines.

NHL.COM: Nazem Kadri scored twice and set up another as the Colorado Avalanche defeated the Detroit Red Wings 6-3. Nathan MacKinnon also tallied twice for the Avs while Dylan Larkin had a three-point outing for Detroit. Wings goalie Jimmy Howard is winless in his last 15 games (0-13-2).

Nazem Kadri’s three-point performance powered the Colorado Avalanche to a 6-3 win over the Detroit Red Wings (Photo via NHL Images)

A late goal by Noel Acciari lifted the Florida Panthers to a 5-4 victory over the Minnesota Wild. Panthers defenseman Keith Yandle collected four points. Luke Kunin scored two goals for the Wild.

Washington Capitals captain Alex Ovechkin, Columbus Blue Jackets goaltender Elvis Merzlikins, and Chicago Blackhawks captain Jonathan Toews are the NHL’s three stars for the week ending Jan. 19.

THE SCORE: In an upcoming Sportsnet documentary, Edmonton Oilers captain Connor McDavid reveals the knee injury he suffered at the end of last season was more serious than originally reported.

Doctors told McDavid he was facing surgery and a 10-month recovery period to repair a torn PCL ligament, a torn lining at the back of his knee, and a crack at the front of his tibia. He instead opted for a rigorous rehabilitation schedule.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: The rehab obviously worked for McDavid. He hasn’t missed a game this season and is the NHL’s leading scorer, on pace for a career-high 127 points.

NHL.COM: Vancouver Canucks assistant general manager John Weisbrod said his club has started contract extension talks with goaltender Jacob Markstrom.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Markstrom is slated to become an unrestricted free agent in July. He’s won 18 of 34 starts with a 2.71 goals-against average and a .916 save percentage while facing the sixth-most shots.

TRIBLIVE.COM: Pittsburgh Penguins forward Dominik Kahun was diagnosed with a concussion during Sunday’s game against Boston.

TSN: Winnipeg Jets forward Adam Lowry will be sidelined at least a month with an upper-body injury.










Notable Trades Leading Up To the 2019 NHL Draft

Notable Trades Leading Up To the 2019 NHL Draft

 










NHL Morning Coffee Headlines – June 16, 2019

NHL Morning Coffee Headlines – June 16, 2019

The Penguins trade Olli Maatta to the Blackhawks, and Dion Phaneuf and Andrew MacDonald are bought out. Details and more in today’s NHL morning coffee headlines. 

PITTSBURGH TRIBUNE-REVIEW/CHICAGO SUN-TIMES: The Pittsburgh Penguins traded defenseman Olli Maatta to the Chicago Blackhawks for center Dominik Kuhan and a fifth-round pick in the upcoming NHL Draft. 

Pittsburgh Penguins trade defenseman Olli Maatta to the Chicago Blackhawks (Photo via NHL Images).

SPECTOR’S NOTE: While most of the focus in the Penguins trade-rumor mill was on Phil Kessel and Evgeni Malkin, Maatta was also considered a potential trade candidate. He’d fallen out of favor with head coach Mike Sullivan and the Penguins had to free up salary-cap space.

Maatta makes over $4 million annually through 2021-22 while Kahun earns $925K for 2019-20. The move shed over $3 million for the Penguins, giving them over $6 million in cap space for next season. The Penguins also get back a decent player in Kahun. The 23-year-old is a speedy, versatile forward who can play center or wing and tallied 37 points as a rookie this season, all but two of those at even strength.

For the first time in years, Blackhawks general manager Stan Bowman has plenty of salary cap space to work with. Maatta brings what should be an invaluable injection of youth and puck-moving skill to their blueline. While he struggled this season, he helped the Penguins win two Stanley Cup championships. Perhaps a change of scenery will help him regain his confidence. 

LOS ANGELES TIMES: The Kings have bought out the contract of veteran defenseman Dion Phaneuf. He was due to earn $5.25-million per season from the Kings through 2020-21. Cap Friendly has the buyout breakdown for the Kings and Phaneuf’s former club, the Ottawa Senators.

CSNPHILLY.COM: The Philadelphia Flyers yesterday placed defenseman Andrew MacDonald on unconditional waivers to buy out the final season of his contract. MacDonald, 32, had one year remaining on his five-year contract with an annual average value of $5 million. Cap Friendly has the details of the buyout. 

SPECTOR’S NOTE: These moves were unsurprising. Both blueliners are past their playing prime and carried too much salary. Still, I can see them signing affordable one- or two-year contracts with clubs seeking experienced depth and leadership on their bluelines.

There was speculation the Kings might also buy out center Jeff Carter. The Athletic’s Lisa Dillman reports Kings GM Rob Blake saying Phaneuf will be their only buyout this summer. 

NEW YORK POST: Larry Brooks raised concern over the NHL’s concussion protocol after Boston Bruins winger Jake DeBrusk admitted he played through a concussion he suffered earlier in the postseason. 

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Brooks isn’t the only person raising the alarm over the issue. Did DeBrusk hide his symptoms from team doctors? Was the coaching staff and management aware of his situation? If so, why did they allow him to continue playing? As my pal Scotty Wazz of The Face Off Hockey Show points out, this doesn’t reflect well on the league’s concussion program. 

STLTODAY.COM: Check out the photos of the St. Louis Blues’ Stanley Cup victory parade.