NHL Morning Coffee Headlines – January 8, 2020

NHL Morning Coffee Headlines – January 8, 2020

Another milestone for Alex Ovechkin, Justin Williams returns to the Hurricanes, and more in today’s NHL morning coffee headlines.

GAME RECAPS

NHL.COM: Washington Capitals captain Alex Ovechkin reached another scoring milestone in a 6-1 thumping of the Ottawa Senators. Ovechkin scored twice to tie Teemu Selanne (684 goals) for 11th on the all-time goal list. T.J. Oshie also scored two goals while defenseman John Carlson chipped in two assists.

Washington Capitals captain Alex Ovechkin is tied with Teemu Selanne with 684 career goals (Photo via NHL Images).

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Ovechkin needs only 11 more goals to surpass Mario Lemieux, Steve Yzerman, and Mark Messier and move into eighth overall. Barring injury, he should pass those three before season’s end. He needs 25 more goals to pass Mike Gartner for seventh.

The Carolina Hurricanes edged the Philadelphia Flyers 5-4 on an overtime goal by Dougie Hamilton. Sebastian Aho and Warren Foegele each had two points. The Flyers have lost four straight games. The Hurricanes also announced winger Justin Williams was returning to play on a one-year, bonus-laden contract with a base salary of $700K. Williams, 38, had stepped away from the game for several months. It remains to be seen where he’ll fit into the lineup or when he’ll play his first game.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: There was speculation the Boston Bruins, Tampa Bay Lightning, Toronto Maple Leafs and Washington Capitals might try to sign Williams before he inked his new deal with the Hurricanes. It’ll be interesting to see how long it takes the veteran winger to round back into game shape and how effective he’ll be over the remainder of this season.

The St. Louis Blues snapped a three-game winless skid by holding off the San Jose Sharks 3-2. Sharks captain Logan Couture left the game in the second period with an apparent knee injury.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: An update on Couture’s status could come later today. If he’s sidelined for a long period, it’ll be a significant setback to the Sharks’ playoff hopes.

Tampa Bay Lightning rookie Carter Verhaeghe tallied his first career NHL hat trick in a 9-2 drubbing of the Vancouver Canucks. Brayden Point had a four-point performance and Steven Stamkos collected three points. Lightning defenseman Ryan McDonagh missed the game with an upper-body injury and could remain sidelined until Saturday. The Bolts have won eight straight.

The Boston Bruins spoiled John Hynes’ debut as the Nashville Predators new head coach by rolling to a 6-2 victory. Bruins forwards Charlie Coyle and Danton Heinen each had a goal and an assist while David Pastrnak netted his league-leading 32nd goal.

Elias Lindholm celebrated his 500th career NHL game with two goals as the Calgary Flames squeaked past the Chicago Blackhawks 2-1. Blackhawks center Dylan Strome left the game with an injured right ankle in the second period.

Kris Letang and Dominik Kahun each picked up two points and Tristan Jarry made 31 stops in a 4-3 win over the Vegas Golden Knights. The Penguins have won 12 of their last 16 while the Golden Knights’ four-game win streak came to an end. Jarry and Letang were named to the 2020 NHL All-Star Game as injury replacements.

The Columbus Blue Jackets extended their road points streak to nine games by edging the Anaheim Ducks 4-3. Zach Werenski scored two goals and Pierre-Luc Dubois collected three assists. With 50 points, the Jackets sit behind the Flyers (50 points) for the final wild-card spot in the Eastern Conference. The Flyers hold a game in hand.

New York Rangers rookie goalie Igor Shesterkin made 29 saves (13 in the first period) for his first career NHL victory in a 5-3 win over the Colorado Avalanche. Rangers winger Artemi Panarin scored and set up two others. The Avs have dropped seven of their last 10 games.

The Arizona Coyotes picked up their fourth straight win by downing the Florida Panthers 5-2. Taylor Hall tallied the game-winner, Phil Kessel collected three assists, and goalie Adin Hill made 37 saves.

Anders Lee’s overtime goal lifted the New York Islanders over the New Jersey Devils 4-3. Nico Hischier and Kyle Palmieri each had a goal and an assist in a losing cause for the Devils.

The Detroit Red Wings rallied to nip the Montreal Canadiens 4-3. Frans Nielsen scored twice and Filip Zadina tallied the winning goal. Ilya Kovalchuk picked up two assists for the Habs, who are winless in seven (0-6-1).

IN OTHER NEWS…

ESPN.COM: NHL deputy commissioner Bill Daly said the league is concerned over the recent trend of notable players skipping the annual All-Star Game. Washington’s Alex Ovechkin and Vegas’ Marc-Andre Fleury have opted out of this year’s game. Under league rules, a player named to the ASG who doesn’t attend faces a one-game suspension.

Daly believes the current punishment isn’t sufficient to discourage players from skipping the game, but the league might not attempt to stiffen the penalty through collective bargaining. “What we want to do is make sure everybody understands that it is an important event, not something that should be bypassed lightly. We’ll seek the help with the [NHLPA] in instilling that sentiment with the players,” said Daly.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: If the stick isn’t working, the league should try the carrot approach. Rather than punishment, perhaps they can entice the players by sweetening the $1 million prize for the winning team in the All-Star Game.

TWINCITIES.COM: The Minnesota Wild recalled goaltender Kaapo Kahkonen as Devan Dubnyk will skip the club’s upcoming trip to Calgary. Dubnyk will be with his wife as she undergoes a medical procedure.

SPORTSNET: The Montreal Canadiens traded former first-round pick Michael McCarron to the Nashville Predators for center Laurent Dauphin. McCarron was selected 25th overall in the 2013 NHL Draft.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: As per Cap Friendly, the Canadiens don’t have the best record in managing their first-round assets in recent years:

 










NHL Morning Coffee Headlines – July 28, 2019

NHL Morning Coffee Headlines – July 28, 2019

Update on Mitch Marner plus the latest contract signings and more in today’s NHL morning coffee headlines.

TORONTO SUN: Steve Simmons believes the Toronto Maple Leafs will have Mitch Marner re-signed on the opening day of the 2019-20 season. He’ll miss all of training camp and perhaps the first few games of the regular season but it’ll be a better outcome than William Nylander’s contract standoff a year ago.

Could it take until the start of the regular season for the Toronto Maple Leafs to re-sign Mitch Marner? (Photo via NHL Images)

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Can’t rule out that possibility. I doubt Leafs general manager Kyle Dubas wants another season where one of his best young players isn’t signed until December and I don’t think Marner’s keen on that possibility.

By reacquiring all-but-retired David Clarkson, Dubas can place his $5.25-million salary-cap hit and that of Nathan Horton ($5.3 million) on LTIR to start the season. That’ll provide sufficient cap space for Marner’s next contract. 

CALGARY SUN: The Flames avoided salary arbitration with David Rittich, re-signing the goaltender to a two-year contract with an annual average value of $2.75 million.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: A reasonable bridge deal for Rittich, allowing the Flames sufficient time to evaluate his performance to determine if he’s ready to become a full-time starting goalie.

This signing also affects the Flames’ salary-cap space for 2019-20 and their efforts to re-sign power forward Matthew Tkachuk. I’ll have more on that in the Rumors section. 

DKPITTSBURGHSPORTS.COM: Defenseman Marcus Pettersson won’t be re-signing with the Pittsburgh Penguins until the club frees up sufficient salary-cap space. His agent, Peter Wallen, said the Penguins are currently up against the $81.5-million salary-cap ceiling and lack the money to re-sign his client. “I guess we’re waiting for them to make some room,” said Wallen. The Penguins currently sit just over $157K over the cap.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Wallen said he’s had cordial negotiations with Penguins management and acknowledged there’s sufficient time to get a deal done. However, he’d like to have a new contract in place for Petterssen before training camp opens in September.

Depending on how much it’ll take to re-sign Petterssen, the Penguins could bury a couple of contracts in the minors or make a trade to free up cap room. Petterssen completed his entry-level contract last season so he doesn’t have much leverage. He also shouldn’t be too expensive to retain. 

MONTREAL GAZETTE: The Canadiens re-signed forward Mike McCarron to a one-year, two-way contract.

 

 










NHL Morning Coffee Headlines – September 11, 2018

NHL Morning Coffee Headlines – September 11, 2018

Golden Knights re-sign Max Pacioretty plus the latest on David Krejci, Paul Byron, Luca Sbisa and more in your NHL morning coffee headlines.

LAS VEGAS SUN: Soon after acquiring Max Pacioretty yesterday from the Montreal Canadiens, the Vegas Golden Knights announced they had re-signed the left wing to a four-year, $28-million contract extension. Pacioretty, 29, was due to become an unrestricted free agent next July.

Hours after acquiring Max Pacioretty, the Vegas Golden Knights signed him to a four-year contract extension. (Photo via NHL Images)

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Pacioretty’s recent statement that he wouldn’t discuss a contract with the Canadiens once the season opened next month spurred his departure from Montreal. It also accounts for the haste in which the Golden Knights signed shortly after acquiring him. Pacioretty’s current contract (six years, $27 million) carries an annual average value of $4.5 million. The Canadiens picked up 10 percent of that for this season.

Cap Friendly indicates his new deal is worth an AAV of $7 million, paying him $10.5 million in actual salary in 2019-20, $7 million in 2020-21, and $5.25 million in each of the final two seasons. He won’t receive performance bonuses but it does come with a modified no-trade clause (10-team no-trade list), something he doesn’t have in his current deal.

It’s a fair deal for Pacioretty, a five-time 30-goal scorer who was underpaid for most of his current contract.The lack of a state tax in Nevada means he’ll keep much more of his salary than he would’ve had he re-signed with the Canadiens. It will also make him the Golden Knights’ highest-paid forward and tie him with goaltender Marc-Andre Fleury with the highest annual cap hit.

Some might question the Golden Knights payingthat high AAV to a soon-to-be 30 year old winger but the term is a reasonable one. If Pacioretty’s regains his 30-goal form, this deal could prove worthwhile for a club hoping to prove itself more than a one-year wonder. 

NESN: A visa issue will prevent center David Krejci, a native of the Czech Republic, from joining his Boston Bruins teammates in China for their upcoming exhibition games with the Calgary Flames.

NHL.COM: The Bruins have signed forwards Lee Stempniak and Daniel Winnik to professional tryout agreements.

CBS SPORTS: Canadiens winger Paul Byron expects to be ready for the start of training camp after recovering from offseason shoulder surgery.

TSN: The Canadiens also re-signed center Michael McCarron to a one-year, two-way contract worth over $875K at the NHL level.

MLIVE.COM: Veteran forward Jussi Jokinen will be attending the Detroit Red Wings training camp on a tryout basis. 

TSN: Free-agent defenseman Luca Sbisa will join the New York Islanders on a professional tryout offer. 

EDMONTON JOURNAL: The Edmonton Oilers have signed right wing Alex Chiasson to a PTO.

 











NHL Morning Coffee Headlines – August 29, 2018

NHL Morning Coffee Headlines – August 29, 2018

Latest on Henrik Zetterberg, Jason Garrison, Shane Doan and more in your NHL morning coffee headlines.

DETROIT FREE PRESS: Concern over the future of Red Wings captain Henrik Zetterberg continues to rise after he said he wouldn’t take part in training camp or the start of the regular season. A history of back pain threatens to end his playing career. “I will need more answers from doctors before I say I have played my last game,” Zetterberg said. “In my mind, I am hoping it can get solved.”

Detroit Red Wings captain Henrik Zetterberg will miss training camp and the start of the 2018-19 season. (Photo via NHL Images)

SPECTOR’S NOTE: According to Zetterberg, symptoms arise whenever he does something “uncontrolled”. In other words, it appears any sudden and unexpected body motion is a problem. He said the next procedure he’d face would be spinal fusion and that’s something he’d rather not have until he’s much older. By the sound of things, he’s played his final professional hockey game.

EDMONTON JOURNAL: The Oilers have signed free-agent defenseman Jason Garrison to a professional tryout offer. He’s a veteran of 539 NHL games over ten years but spent most of last season with the AHL’s Chicago Wolves.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: With top-pairing blueliner Andrej Sekera sidelined indefinitely with a torn Achilles’ tendon and carrying limited cap space, the Oilers are looking at whatever affordable short-term options they can find to fill the void for now. They recently signed rearguard Jakub Jerabek to a one-year, $1-million contract. In his heyday, Garrison was a skilled puck-moving d-man who tallied over 30 points in a season three times. This could be his last shot at continuing his NHL career. 

Free-agent defenseman Brandon Davidson is joining the Chicago Blackhawks on a tryout offer. If they like what they see from Davidson they intend to sign him to a one-year, one-way contract. 

TSN: Former Arizona Coyotes captain Shane Doan will serve as a pallbearer at Senator John McCain’s memorial service on Thursday. McCain succumbed to brain cancer last Saturday. 

LA PRESSE: The Montreal Canadiens are close to re-signing restricted free agent center Michael McCarron to a short-term contract.