For NHL Players, Trade Deadline A Harrowing Experience
Game recaps, the Sharks fire head coach Peter DeBoer, Forbes releases its annual evaluation of NHL franchises, and more in today’s morning coffee headlines.
NHL.COM: T.J. Oshie scored two goals as the Washington Capitals defeated the Boston Bruins 3-2. John Carlson scored the game-winner, snapping a 2-2 tie in the third period. Bruins winger David Pastrnak tallied his league-leading 26th goal of the season,
Colorado Avalanche winger Mikko Rantanen tallied twice in a 3-1 victory over the Philadelphia Flyers. Avs center Nazem Kadri returned to action after being sidelined for three games. The Avalanche are unbeaten in their last eight contests (7-0-1). Claude Giroux scored for the Flyers.
An overtime goal by Ben Chiarot lifted the Montreal Canadiens over the Ottawa Senators 3-2. The Senators made things interesting by overcoming a 2-0 deficit. Max Domi collected two assists while rookie goaltender Cayden Primeau picked up his first NHL victory. Brady Tkachuk picked up two points for the Senators. The Canadiens played without Matthew Peca. They also placed center Jesperi Kotkaniemi (upper body) on injured reserve.
NBC SPORTS BAY AREA: The San Jose Sharks yesterday fired head coach Peter DeBoer and three of his assistant coaches. Bob Boughner takes over for DeBoer on an interim basis.
SPECTOR’S NOTE: The Sharks are struggling to score and the defense hasn’t played well, but poor goaltending is the real reason DeBoer lost his job. Martin Jones and Aaron Dell have been terrible, sporting the league’s third-worst goals-against per game (3.42). Boughner might improve their defense, but I doubt he’ll be able to elevate the goaltending.
DETROIT FREE PRESS: Speaking of coaches on struggling teams in danger of losing their job, Jeff Blashill’s performance is under the microscope as the Red Wings approach the longest losing skid in franchise history.
SPECTOR’S NOTE: The record is 14 straight games. The Wings are in a death spiral, sparking comparisons to the “Dead Things” of the early-’80s. General manager Steve Yzerman’s been patient, but one wonders how much longer he’ll wait before shaking up the coaching staff.
FORBES.COM: For the fifth straight year, the New York Rangers top the magazine’s annual evaluation of NHL franchises. The Toronto Maple Leafs, Montreal Canadiens, Chicago Blackhawks, and Boston Bruins round out the top five. The Arizona Coyotes came in last in the rankings.
TSN: Montreal Canadiens Hall-of-Famer Guy Lapointe is undergoing treatment for oral cancer. A team statement indicates this form of cancer has a high cure rate.
SPECTOR’S NOTE: Best wishes to “Pointu” for a speedy recovery.
CBS SPORTS: Columbus Blue Jackets center Emil Bemstrom will miss the next 6-to-8 weeks due to a dislocated rib and broken cartilage.
CHICAGO TRIBUNE: Blackhawks trainer Mike Gapski will work his 2,500th NHL game tonight against the Arizona Coyotes.
THE SCORE: The Colorado Eagles’ equipment manager had been placed on administrative leave after former NHL player Akim Aliu revealed he attended a team Halloween party in blackface dressed as Aliu. The incident took place in 2011.
Jacob Trouba award one-year contract, Jets avoid arbitration with Brandon Tanev, plus updates on Brandon Montour, Jason Zucker and more in your NHL morning coffee headlines.
WINNIPEG FREE PRESS: An arbitrator awarded Winnipeg Jets defenseman Jacob Trouba a one-year, $5.5-million contract. Given the apparent divide and rocky history of contract negotiations between Trouba and Jets management, this deal could merely delay the inevitable breakup between the two sides.
SPECTOR’S NOTE: The Trouba camp obviously sought much more than the Jets are willing to pay for his services. There was reportedly a three-million divide between the two sides entering arbitration, with Trouba seeking $7 million and the Jets proposing $4 million.
Next summer, Trouba will be once again be a restricted free agent with arbitration rights but he’ll also be a year away from unrestricted free agent status. The Jets could surprise us by trading Trouba before next February’s NHL trade deadline but I believe they’ll hang onto him as they attempt to build upon last season’s franchise-best performance.
Three outcomes are possible. One is Trouba has a career-best season that entices the Jets to meet his asking price on a long-term deal. Another is they’ll once again go through arbitration where he’ll get another one-year deal leading to his eventual departure the following year as a UFA. The third is they’ll trade him next summer rather than risk losing him for nothing to the 2020 free-agent market.
TSN: Speaking of the Jets, they avoided arbitration with defenseman Brandon Tanev by signing him to a one-year, $1.15-million contract.
SPORTSNET’s Elliotte Friedman reports Anaheim Ducks defenseman Brandon Montour seeks a one-year, $4.75-million contract via arbitration while the club seeks a two-year deal worth an annual average value of $1.5 million. Ducks general manager Bob Murray said the two sides are working on a bridge deal.
SPECTOR’S NOTE: Montour’s hearing is slated for tomorrow in Toronto. Perhaps the two sides will reach agreement on a two-year deal worth around $3.5-million per season.
THE ATHLETIC: A sizable gap remains between the Minnesota Wild and winger Jason Zucker with his July 28th arbitration hearing looming. Zucker reportedly seeks well over $6 million annually while the Wild are offering between $5.25 – $5.75 million. No-trade protection is also a sticking point. Zucker’s agent will meet with Wild GM Paul Fenton in Minnesota on Wednesday in hopes of ending the deadlock.
SPECTOR’S NOTE: Zucker’s adamant that he wants to stay in Minnesota. Perhaps one way around this is if Fenton agrees to a full no-trade provided Zucker accepts $5.75 million per season.
CTV NEW MONTREAL: Surete du Quebec are investigating alleged threats by a member of Hell’s Angels against former Montreal Canadiens defenseman Guy Lapointe and his son. Lapointe won six Stanley Cups with the Canadiens in the 1970s and is a member of the Hockey Hall of Fame. His son is also a member of Surete du Quebec.