NHL Morning Coffee Headlines – May 29, 2018
Golden Knights take Game 1 of the 2018 Stanley Cup Final. Details and more in your NHL morning coffee headlines.
NHL.COM: Tomas Nosek scored the tie-breaking and insurance goals as the Vegas Golden Knights defeated the Washington Capitals in Game 1 of the 2018 Stanley Cup Final. Reilly Smith and Derek Engelland also had two points for the Golden Knights, as did Nicklas Backstrom and T.J. Oshie for the Capitals. Game 2 goes Wednesday night in Las Vegas.
Washington forward Tom Wilson garnered attention with yet another controversial hit, this one a blind-side job on Vegas forward Jonathan Marchessault, who believes “the league’s going to take care of it.”
SPECTOR’S NOTE: This was a fast-paced, highly entertaining contest. It’s unlikely to be fondly remembered by the goaltenders. Washington’s Braden Holtby and Vegas’ Marc-Andre Fleury both looked a little rusty in this one.
The Capitals seemed at times to struggle against the Golden Knights’ aggressive forechecking. Vegas’ fourth line of Nosek, Ryan Reaves and Pierre-Edouard Bellemare certainly made their presence felt in this one, tallying three of the Golden Knights’ six goals.
Ice conditions at T-Mobile Arena weren’t the best. The puck bounced a lot and there were several delays to repair slushy patches.
Earlier in the day, NHL commissioner Gary Bettman and deputy commissioner Bill Daly revealed a Seattle expansion vote by the league board of governors could come as early as this fall. An update on the city’s expansion application will be provided to the board at its June 20th meeting.
Bettman and Daly both indicated a willingness to begin talks on a new collective bargaining agreement with the NHLPA, though those discussions haven’t started yet.
Daly said the league still projects the salary cap for 2018-19 could come in between $78 million to $82 million, depending upon the NHLPA triggering its annual five percent inflator. Daly also said the Arizona Coyotes, Ottawa Senators, New York Islanders and Calgary Flames are continuing efforts to construct new arenas.
SPECTOR’S NOTE: While Seattle fans will have to wait until this fall to find out if they’ll have an expansion club, there’s little to suggest this isn’t going to happen. The earliest that franchise could start operations is 2020-21.
While the current CBA expires at the end of 2021-22, the league or the PA can vote in September 2019 to reopen negotiations at the end of 2019-20. The league could be keen to have a new agreement in place before ’20-’21. The concern for hockey fans, of course, is this results in yet another lockout.
According to TSN, the icy standoff between the Flames and the city of Calgary over a new arena may be thawing. The city council voted to form a committee to reopen negotiations with the team.
SPORTSNET: Former Ottawa Senators captain Daniel Alfredsson recently told an interviewer he’s hoping his former club gets a new owner.
SPECTOR’S NOTE: Senators owner Eugene Melnyk incurred the ire of the team’s fans and pundits around the league last fall for his veiled threats to relocate the franchise if attendance figures didn’t improve. Though Melnyk subsequently walked back those remarks and tried to mend fences with Senators fans, Alfredsson’s remarks suggest the cantankerous owner still has a lot of work to do. Aflie’s wasting his breath hoping for a new owner, as Melnyk has indicated he doesn’t intend to sell the club.
TSN: Reports indicate New York Islanders forward Nikolay Kulemin reached an agreement with the KHL’s Magnitogorsk Metallurg to join them next season. He’s an unrestricted free agent on July 1.