NHL Morning Coffee Headlines – September 23, 2022
Gabriel Landeskog and Nick Suzuki are among notable stars sidelined as training camps open. Ryan Ellis is expected to miss the entire season, plus the latest on Kirill Kaprizov, Mark Stone, Mathew Barzal and more in today’s NHL Morning Coffee Headlines.
NHL.COM: Colorado Avalanche captain Gabriel Landeskog is expected to miss the start of the 2022-23 season with a lower-body injury that’s been nagging him since last season. Meanwhile, winger Valeri Nichushkin is not participating in on-ice activities with a lower-body injury.
SPECTOR’S NOTE: Landeskog underwent knee surgery in March and missed the remainder of the regular season but returned in the playoffs to lead the Avalanche to the Stanley Cup.
MONTREAL GAZETTE: Canadiens captain Nick Suzuki will be sidelined for two weeks with a lower-body injury. Defenseman Joel Edmundson will be out indefinitely with a lower-body injury. Winger Josh Anderson and Jake Evans are day-to-day with upper-body injuries.
SPECTOR’S NOTE: Edmundson missed all but 23 games last season recovering from a back injury.
PHILLY HOCKEY NOW: Flyers defenseman Ryan Ellis is expected to miss the entire upcoming season with a torn psoas muscle causing hip and core muscle issues. General manager Chuck Fletcher said it’s possible the 31-year-old blueliner’s career is in jeopardy.
SPECTOR’S NOTE: Ellis’ injury sidelined him for all but four games last season. His absence is a big blow to the Flyers blueline.
VEGAS HOCKEY NOW: Golden Knights captain Mark Stone said the nerve pain in his back is fully gone following surgery earlier this year. The 30-year-old winger missed 45 games last season. He said he’s looking forward to getting into at least one preseason game before the regular season begins next month.
SPECTOR’S NOTE: Stone’s absence contributed to the Golden Knights missing the playoffs last season.
TSN: Golden Knights forward Nolan Patrick will miss the coming season with an upper-body injury. A former first-round pick, the frequently sidelined Patrick played just 25 games last season.
THE ATHLETIC: A number of lawyers and diplomats worked with the Minnesota Wild and the agent for Kirill Kaprizov to help the Russian winger secure a U.S. work visa for the coming season. There were concerns the 25-year-old Kaprizov wouldn’t be able to return to the Wild due to Russia’s invasion of Ukraine.
Wild general manager Bill Guerin said he doesn’t think there was much truth to reports claiming Kaprizov used a fake military ID. The young winger has been in Minnesota for the past seven weeks.
SPECTOR’S NOTE: It’ll be interesting to see if Kaprizov and other Russian NHL players encounter further difficulties getting work visas next summer if the war is still going on by then.
NEW YORK POST: Mathew Barzal isn’t stressed about not having a contract extension yet with the Islanders. The 25-year-old center remains hopeful of getting a deal done before the start of the season in two weeks’ time. There appears to be genuine sentiment between Barzal and Islanders management toward getting a new contract in place soon.
SPECTOR’S NOTE: Barzal will be a restricted free agent next summer and will be a year away from unrestricted free agent eligibility
NHL.COM: The Anaheim Ducks won’t be discussing contract extensions with forwards Trevor Zegras and Troy Terry and defenseman Jamie Drysdale until after the 2022-23 season. GM Pat Verbeek wants to see how the season goes and doesn’t want contract negotiations to be a distraction for the players.
SPECTOR’S NOTE: Zegras and Drysdale will be completing their entry-level contracts. Terry will be completing his second NHL contract and will have arbitration rights next summer.
THE PHILADELPHIA INQUIRER: Flyers goaltender Carter Hart said he’s fully cooperating with the NHL investigation into sexual assault allegations aimed at eight players on Canada’s 2018 World Junior team.
TORONTO SUN: Maple Leafs defenseman Jake Muzzin will miss the opening week of training camp with a sore back.
TSN: The Arizona Coyotes placed Andrew Ladd on long-term injury reserve for the coming season. He was acquired from the New York Islanders last year. Per the terms of the deal, the Coyotes will receive a 2023 third-round pick from the Isles as a result of Ladd being placed on LTIR.
SPECTOR’S NOTE: Ladd is in the final year of his contract. Given his age and injury history, the 36-year-old winger’s NHL playing career appears to be over.
Former Nashville Predators goaltender Pekka Rinne has rejoined the team as a special alumni advisor.
EDMONTON JOURNAL: The Oilers signed forward Ryan McLeod to a one-year, $798K contract.
SPECTOR’S NOTE: That bargain price could enable the Oilers to start the season with a 21-man roster while GM Ken Holland seeks ways to free up additional cap space if unable to do so over the next two weeks.
THE ATHLETIC: Russian players who are scheduled to participate in upcoming NHL games in Prague will not be allowed into Czechia owing to that country’s stance on Russia’s war with Ukraine.
The Nashville Predators and San Jose Sharks are scheduled to play in Prague on Oct. 7 and 8. Yakov Trenin plays for the Predators while Alexander Barabanov and Evgeny Svechnikov skate for the Sharks.
SPECTOR’S NOTE: Sharks GM Mike Grier said the NHL is handling this situation with Czechia. He doesn’t anticipate his club will forfeit those games but added, “we all go or we don’t go.”