NHL Morning Coffee Headlines – January 26, 2021

NHL Morning Coffee Headlines – January 26, 2021

The Canucks crush the Senators, last week’s three stars are announced, the latest on Pierre-Luc Dubois and David Pastrnak, plus injury/illness updates and much more in today’s NHL morning coffee headlines.

NHL.COM: Brandon Sutter tallied his first career NHL hat trick and Thatcher Demko made 35 saves as the Vancouver Canucks thrashed the Ottawa Senators 7-1. Bo Horvat collected two assists while Tanner Pearson had a goal and an assist. The Senators have dropped five straight games.

Vancouver Canucks center Brandon Sutter (NHL Images).

SPECTOR’S NOTE: A big win for the Canucks as their recent struggles were cause for concern among their followers. The two clubs meet again on Wednesday and finish their three-game series on Thursday.

Montreal Canadiens winger Tyler Toffoli, Dallas Stars center Joe Pavelski and Anaheim Ducks goaltender John Gibson are the NHL’s three stars for the week ending Jan. 24.

TSN: Columbus Blue Jackets general manager Jarmo Kekalainen refuted any notion that last year’s contract negotiations with Pierre-Luc Dubois led to the 22-year-old center being traded on Saturday to the Winnipeg Jets.

Dubois suggested in a recent interview that those discussions led in part to his trade request. “That’s just flat out not true at all and he knows that, so I don’t know why he would say that or even insinuate something like that, because it’s not true,” said Kekalainen.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: The real reason for Dubois’ trade request will be a hot topic for some time. Some believe it was his relationship with Jackets coach John Tortorella but Dubois has denied this.

There are also lots of guessing behind the trade request of Patrik Laine, who the Jackets swapped for Dubois. Some condemn Jets GM Kevin Cheveldayoff, head coach Paul Maurice and Jets leaders Blake Wheeler and Mark Scheifele for creating a supposed toxic atmosphere that drove Laine away. Others blame the winger’s perceived lackadaisical approach.

CBS SPORTS: David Pastrnak could return to action with the Boston Bruins as soon as Saturday. The 24-year-old winger has been sidelined by offseason hip surgery.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: That’s good news for a Bruins’ offense that has been inconsistent without their leading goal scorer.

CHICAGO TRIBUNE: Blackhawks winger Alex DeBrincat and defenseman Adam Boqvist were added to the NHL’s COVID-19 protocol list on Monday. There’s no confirmation either player has tested positive for the coronavirus.

THE SCORE: The NHL postponed Tuesday’s games between the Carolina Hurricanes and Tampa Bay Lightning. It’s the fourth consecutive Hurricanes game to be postponed. The club currently has five players on the COVID-19 protocol list with three confirmed to have tested positive. The league has released new dates for each of the postponed contests.

TSN: Edmonton Oilers winger Tyler Ennis and Colorado Avalanche defenseman Greg Pateryn were placed on waivers Monday. Meanwhile, Tampa Bay Lightning forward Mitchel Stephens is sidelined indefinitely with a lower-body injury while defenseman Erik Cernak is day-to-day with an upper-body injury.

TRIBLIVE.COM: Pittsburgh Penguins center Evan Rodrigues is sidelined indefinitely with an apparent lower-body injury suffering during a collision with New York Rangers forward Filip Chytil on Sunday.

ARIZONA REPUBLIC: Former Coyotes GM John Chayka has been suspended to the end of 2021 by the NHL for conduct detrimental to the league and the game. The suspension is reportedly due to Chayka’s departure from the Coyotes last summer.

THE TENNESSEAN: Nashville Predators goaltender Connor Ingram will be away from the club for an indefinite period as he voluntarily entered the league’s player assistance program.

NBC SPORTS CHICAGO: Goaltender Scott Darling has signed a professional tryout offer with the Blackhawks’ AHL affiliate in Rockford, Illinois. Darling spent three seasons with the Blackhawks from 2014-15 to 2016-17, helping them win the Stanley Cup in 2015.

The Notable Deals of the 2020 NHL Trade Deadline

The Notable Deals of the 2020 NHL Trade Deadline

New York Rangers re-sign Chris Kreider to a seven-year contract extension worth an annual average value of $6.5 million

Not a trade, but Kreider was considered the top trade bait entering deadline day. Reports out of New York this morning suggested he was likely to be moved. The Rangers bent on the term, as they reportedly offered a six-year deal. Perhaps the Kreider camp gave a little on the dollars. The 28-year-old left-winger gets the long-term deal to stay put, but time will tell if this deal pans out over the long term for the Blueshirts.

The New York Islanders acquire and sign center Jean-Gabriel Pageau from the Ottawa Senators (Photo via NHL Images).

New York Islanders acquire center Jean-Gabriel Pageau

The Islanders address a glaring need on their forward lines with Pageau, a skilled two-way player who can skate at center or on the wing. They overpaid to get him, sending a conditional first-round pick in 2020, a 2020 second-rounder, and a conditional third in 2022 to the Ottawa Senators. That was offset by re-signing Pageau to a six-year, $30-million contract extension. The rebuilding Senators got a fine return, leaving them with potentially 13 picks in the 2020 Draft, with nine of those in the first three rounds.

Carolina Hurricanes acquire Brady Skjei from the New York Rangers and Sami Vatanen from the New Jersey Devils

The Hurricanes shored up their banged-up blueline by parting with a first-round pick for Skjei and shipping forward Janne Kuokkanen and a conditional second-round pick to the Devils for Vatanen. With Dougie Hamilton out for several more weeks with a broken leg and Brett Pesce sidelined by an upper-body injury, Skjei and Vatanen should help fill the gaps.

Florida Panthers trade Vincent Trocheck to the Carolina Hurricanes

The Panthers were rumored for weeks to be in the market for a top-four defenseman and Trocheck recently surfaced as a trade candidate. Instead, they swap him for checking-line forwards Erik Haula and Lucas Wallmark plus two prospects. Trocheck, meanwhile, should provide the Hurricanes with some welcome depth at center.

Vegas Golden Knights acquire goaltender Robin Lehner

Big pickup there for the Golden Knights, shipping Malcolm Subban, a prospect and a second-round pick to the Chicago Blackhawks for a 2019 Vezina Trophy finalist. Lehner will share the duties with starter Marc-Andre Fleury, providing Vegas with a solid one-two punch between the pipes.

Pittsburgh Penguins acquire forwards Patrick Marleau, Conor Sheary and Evan Rodrigues

Penguins GM Jim Rutherford made a significant move earlier this month by acquiring Jason Zucker from Minnesota. He wasn’t done tinkering with his forward lines, bringing in three key playoff rentals. They got Marleau for the San Jose Sharks for a conditional third-rounder and shipped center Dominik Kahun to the Buffalo Sabres for winger Conor Sheary and Evan Rodrigues. In the twilight of his career, Marleau gets a final shot at winning the Stanley Cup. It’s Sheary’s second go-around with the Penguins, winning Cups with them in 2016 and 2017. Rodrigues had requested a trade from the Sabres earlier in the season.

Edmonton Oilers deal for winger Andreas Athanasiou

The Oilers sent Sam Gagner and two second-round picks to the Detroit Red Wings for one of the fastest players in the league in Athanasiou, prompting speculation he’ll become a new linemate for Connor McDavid. If those two mesh well together, Athanasiou will regain the 30-goal form that he’s been lacking this season. Failing that, perhaps he’ll be a better fit on their second line with either Leon Draisaitl or Ryan Nugent-Hopkins. The Oilers also acquired winger Tyler Ennis from the Ottawa Senators and defenseman Mke Green from the Red Wings.

Calgary Flames bring in Erik Gustafsson and Derek Forbort

With Mark Giordano and Travis Hamonic still sidelined, the Flames sent a third-round pick in 2020 to the Chicago Blackhawks for Gustafsson and a conditional fourth in 2021 to the Los Angeles Kings for Forbort. Gustafsson is a mobile blueliner and Forbort will bring a physical edge to the Flames defense corps.

Buffalo Sabres acquire winger Wayne Simmonds

The Sabres sent a fifth-rounder in 2021 to the New Jersey Devils for Simmonds. He’ll provide leadership and experience, but won’t address their ongoing need for a scorer. At least they didn’t pay much to get him, plus the Devils picked up half of his $5-million salary-cap hit.

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

This is a swap of two young forwards who needed a change of scenery. Ritchie was the Ducks first-round pick (10th overall) in 2014 but struggled to play up to expectations as a power forward. Heinen had a promising rookie performance (47 points) in 2017-18, but his production has eroded since then.

Colorado Avalanche land Vladislav Namestnikov

With their forward lines depleted by injuries, the Avs sent a 202 fourth-rounder to the Ottawa Senators for the versatile Namestnikov. The 27-year-old is a solid two-way forward who can skate at center or on the wing. He should fit in well on their checking lines.

Philadelphia Flyers add Derek Grant and Nate Thompson

The Flyers had an interest in Jean-Gabriel Pageau before the Senators shipped him to the Islanders. They instead went a more affordable route, sending a minor-league forward and a 2020 fourth-rounder to the Anaheim Ducks for Grant, and a 2021 fifth-rounder to the Montreal Canadiens for Nate Thompson. The two veterans will provide the Flyers with experienced depth up the middle.

Vancouver Canucks acquire Louis Domingue

With starting goalie Jacob Markstrom sidelined indefinitely with a knee injury, the Canucks sent minor-league goalie Zane McIntyre to the Devils for Domingue. He’ll split the duties with Thatcher Demko and should provide some additional insurance once Markstrom returns.

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.

Updates on NHL Players Who Have Requested Trades This Season

Updates on NHL Players Who Have Requested Trades This Season


NHL Rumor Mill – January 3, 2020

NHL Rumor Mill – January 3, 2020

Having made the first NHL trades of 2020, the Buffalo Sabres, Calgary Flames, and Montreal Canadiens might not be done dealing. Check out the latest in today’s rumor mill.


SPORTNET’s Eric Francis, the Calgary’s Sun’s Wes Gilbertson, and The Athletic’s Scott Cruickshank report the Calgary Flames freed up salary-cap space by shipping winger Michael Frolik to the Buffalo Sabres for a fourth-round draft pick in 2020. The move clears $4.3 million from the Flames’ cap payroll.

Does Calgary Flames GM Brad Treliving have more moves in store? (Photo via NHL.com).

Gilbertson and Cruickshank report Flames general manager Brad Treliving doesn’t intend to sit on his new-found cap space. Gilbertson believes this allows Treliving the flexibility to go shopping for another roster piece. Cruickshank speculates the Flames GM could be in the market for a big, top-six winger, preferably on the right side.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: The New York Rangers’ Chris Kreider would fit the bill, though he skates on the left side. So would Chicago Blackhawks left-winger Brandon Saad, but his $6-million annual average salary through 2020-21 could be tricky to accommodate unless a salaried player heads to Chicago or the Blackhawks pick up part of his cap hit. The LA Kings’ Tyler Toffoli would be a natural right-side fit. It’ll be interesting to see if Treliving pursues one of those guys before the Feb. 24 trade deadline.

SPORTSNET: Eric Engels believes the Montreal Canadiens’ acquisition of defenseman Marco Scandella from the Buffalo Sabres indicates they’re not giving up on their playoff hopes this season. Scandella will provide some welcome left-side blueline depth and will likely line up alongside young Cale Fleury on their third defense pairing. If this move pays dividends for the Habs, Engels speculates GM Marc Bergevin could make more to keep his club’s postseason dreams alive.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Acquiring Scandella proved a cost-effective depth move for the Canadiens, giving up just a fourth-round pick in 2020 to acquire him. The Habs still have three picks (including their own) in the fourth round. With over $5.5 million in cap space, Bergevin has room to make another addition or two before the deadline.

That’ll depend, of course, on where they are in the standings. Sidelined forwards Jonathan Drouin, Brendan Gallagher, Joel Armia and Paul Byron should be back in the lineup by month’s end. If they’re still in the hunt by then, perhaps Bergevin will go shopping for a top-four defenseman.

TSN’s Darren Dreger reported via Twitter the Buffalo Sabres could have more moves coming. “Sounds like Buffalo is still on the hunt and willing to move other pieces,” he wrote.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Adding Michael Frolik from the Flames will provide experienced right-wing depth to their forward lines, but they could use a scorer to take some of the offensive burdens off their top line and perhaps offset the absence of sidelined winger Jeff Skinner. With the Sabres’ struggling to stay in the playoff race, perhaps their next move will come in the following days.

 They still have depth on their defense to draw upon as trade bait. Blueliner Zach Bogosian has requested a trade, as has forward Evan Rodrigues, but it could take some creativity on management’s part to find a suitable return.

NHL Rumor Mill – October 31, 2019

NHL Rumor Mill – October 31, 2019

Latest on Alex Pietrangelo, Torey Krug, Chris Kreider, Kevin Fiala and more in today’s NHL rumor mill.


SPORTSNET: Elliotte Friedman reports Nashville Predators defenseman Roman Josi’s new eight-year, $72.4-million contract will affect St. Louis’ Alex Pietrangelo and Boston’s Torey Krug. Pietrangelo and Blues general manager Doug Armstrong are waiting for the other to make the first move. Whatever happens with Krug, Friedman doubts the Bruins will shop him at the trade deadline.

No sign of progress in Alex Pietrangelo’s contract talks with the St. Louis Blues (Photo via NHL Images)

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Josi’s negotiations reportedly hit a snag entering training camp but was sorted out earlier this week. The same thing could happen to Pietrangelo and Krug. Pietrangelo could seek over $9 million annually but Krug’s is open to a hometown discount.

Speaking of the Blues, Armstrong will look to within their organization for a short-term replacement for sidelined winger Vladimir Tarasenko. He wants to avoid a potential salary-cap crunch once Tarasenko returns to the lineup. Friedman believes New York Rangers winger Chris Kreider would be a good fit with the Blues.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Armstrong could jump into the market near the trade deadline if Tarasenko remains out until the playoffs. Kreider is slated to become an unrestricted free agent in July and could be available if the Rangers are out of playoff contention by February.

Kevin Fiala could be on shaky ground with the Minnesota Wild. The 23-year-old winger has been a healthy scratch twice this season. His talent and favorable contract should make him a good fit with the Wild but they’re going to see what out there in the trade market.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Fiala had a 23-goal, 48-point performance in 2017-18. If he can’t find his footing with the aging Wild he could regain his form with a younger club.

A slow start by forward Andreas Athanasiou could raise questions about his future with the Detroit Red Wings. He’s in a contract year and his previous negotiations were difficult.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Red Wings GM Steve Yzerman won’t be as patient as his predecessor. If Athanasiou doesn’t improve soon he could hit the trade block.

Friedman feels little-used Buffalo Sabres winger Evan Rodrigues could be a good fit with the Ottawa Senators or Toronto Maple Leafs, though he’s not sure the Sabres would want to help the Leafs. Speaking of the Leafs, Friedman said they would move defenseman Martin Marincin, though Jake Muzzin’s health could change that.

The Pittsburgh Penguins are going to add, it’s just a matter of when GM Jim Rutherford wants to. It’s also believed a contract extension for defenseman Marcus Pettersson is all but done but he can’t sign until Jan. 1 at the earliest.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Rutherford is a bold wheeler-dealer throughout the season. He’s already made a recent trade and could pull off another well before the Feb. 24 trade deadline.

With the Calgary Flames struggling, GM Brad Treliving isn’t afraid of making changes. Friedman doesn’t think anything’s imminent but expects Treliving will see what’s out there.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Treliving nearly moved winger Michael Frolik at last year’s trade deadline to Minnesota for Jason Zucker. I don’t think there’s a chance of revisiting that move now but Frolik could be available. He’s a UFA next summer. They also waived Tobias Reider earlier this week.

Friedman also noted the tense situation with the struggling Chicago Blackhawks. Defenseman Brent Seabrook recently expressed his displeasure over being scratched twice from the lineup. Friedman said things got awkward last season when management wanted to see if he’d be willing to move but Seabrook claimed the request wasn’t specifically made to him. Starting goaltender Corey Crawford has to wonder about his future in Chicago with Robin Leher on a one-year contract.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: This could be Crawford’s last season with the Blackhawks if Lehner keeps out-performing him. Seabrook’s hefty contract ($6.875 million annually through 2023-24) and declining play makes him difficult to move.