NHL Notes: Evander Kane Bankrupt, Blackhawks Extend Jeremy Colliton
The Lightning edged the Penguins, the Senators clip the Red Wings, an update on Mikko Rantanen, and more in today’s NHL morning coffee headlines.
NHL.COM: Third-period goals by Cedric Paquette and Victor Hedman lifted the Tampa Bay Lightning to a 3-2 win over the Pittsburgh Penguins. Hedman’s winning goal came with 57 seconds remaining in the game. Goaltender Andrei Vasilevskiy made a goal-line glove save in the dying seconds to preserve the victory.
Anthony Duclair scored twice and Anders Nilsson made 34 saves to give the Ottawa Senators a 5-2 victory over the Detroit Red Wings, handing the latter their sixth straight defeat. Thomas Chabot and Chris Tierney each had two points for the Senators, who were playing without sidelined forwards Colin White and Artem Anisimov. White will be out three-to-five weeks with a hip flexor injury.
THE DENVER POST: Colorado Avalanche winger Mikko Rantanen is listed as week-to-week after suffering a lower-body (leg) injury on Monday against the St. Louis Blues.
SPECTOR’S NOTE: It’s the first test of adversity for the high-flying Avalanche this season. Rantanen, their top-line right wing, had 12 points in nine games before his injury. They could promote Andre Burakovsky or J.T. Compher.
TSN: Montreal Canadiens winger Tomas Tatar suffered a lower-body injury in practice. His status for tonight’s game against the San Jose Sharks is unknown.
WINNIPEG SUN: The Jets claimed defenseman Luca Sbisa off waivers yesterday from the Anaheim Ducks.
CHICAGO TRIBUNE: The Blackhawks placed defenseman Connor Murphy (groin injury) on long-term injury reserve.
Capitals defenseman John Carlson reaches 20 points, Sabres captain Jack Eichel has a four-point performance against the Sharks, the Canucks’ Bo Horvat tallied a hat trick against the Red Wings, and more in the NHL morning coffee headlines.
NHL.COM: John Carlson became the fourth defenseman in NHL history to record 20 points in October as his Washington Capitals beat the Calgary Flames 5-3. He’s also the league points leader. Carlson scored twice while teammate Alex Ovechkin tallied a goal and an assist.
The Buffalo Sabres (8-1-1) moved into first place in the league’s overall standings by edging the San Jose Sharks 4-3 in overtime. Sabres captain Jack Eichel scored twice (including the game-winner) and assisted on two others.
Vancouver Canucks captain Bo Horvat tallied his first career NHL hat trick leading his club to a 5-2 victory over the Detroit Red Wings. It was the Wings’ fifth straight loss. Earlier in the day, the Wings placed defenseman Jonathan Ericsson on waivers.
Boston Bruins forwards David Pastrnak and Brad Marchand each had a goal and an assist as their club doubled up the Toronto Maple Leafs 4-2. Pastrnak holds the NHL goal-scoring lead with 10 goals. Earlier in the day, the Bruins placed center David Krejci (upper body) on injured reserve and revealed winger Kurtis Kuhlman will be sidelined four weeks with a hairline fracture in his right tibia.
Vegas Golden Knight goaltender Marc-Andre Fleury picked up his 446th career victory in a 2-1 shootout win over the Chicago Blackhawks. Fleury moves into seventh place on the all-time wins list. The Blackhawks also made a minor-league trade, shipping forward Aleksi Saarela to the Florida Panthers for defenseman Ian McCoshen.
Goaltenders Devan Dubnyk and Alex Stalock combined for 25 saves as the Minnesota Wild blanked the Edmonton Oilers 3-0. Dubnyk left the game following a second-period collision with teammate Ryan Donato and Oilers defenseman Brandon Manning. An update is expected later today. Earlier in the day, the Wild activated winger Mats Zuccarello off injured reserve.
Jonathan Huberdeau and Denis Malgin each had a goal and an assist in the Florida Panthers’ 4-2 victory over the Pittsburgh Penguins. Aleksander Barkov collected two assists for the Panthers as they extended their points streak to six games. Penguins winger Jake Guentzel collected two helpers.
Viktor Arvidsson scored twice and added an assist to lead the Nashville Predators to a 6-1 drubbing of the Anaheim Ducks. Earlier in the day, the Ducks signed defenseman Luca Sbisa to a one-year, one-way contract and placed him on waivers to send him to their AHL affiliate in San Diego.
Christian Dvorak scored in overtime as the Arizona Coyotes nipped the New York Rangers 3-2. It was the Coyotes’ fourth straight victory and the Rangers’ fifth straight defeat. Blueshirts defenseman Tony DeAngelo scored twice in a losing cause.
Anze Kopitar’s third-period goal lifted the Los Angeles Kings to a 3-2 win over the Winnipeg Jets, who’ve lost four of their last five games. Nikolaj Ehlers scored and set up another for the Jets.
IN OTHER NEWS…
THE DENVER POST: An update is expected today on the status of Mikko Rantanen. The Colorado Avalanche winger suffered a leg injury during Monday’s game against the St. Louis Blues.
The Charlotte Checkers signed forward Jamie McGinn to a professional tryout.
CBS SPORTS: Former NHL winger Magnus Paajarvi signed a two-year contract with KHL club Lokomotiv Yaroslavl.
NBC SPORTS: Seattle’s NHL expansion franchise has narrowed down proposed team names to five. They are expected to officially reveal its name in 2020.
Golden Knights re-sign Shea Theodore, Brian Gionta retires, Islanders sign Luca Sbisa, and more in your NHL morning coffee headlines.
LAS VEGAS SUN: The Vegas Golden Knights have re-signed defenseman Shea Theodore to a seven-year, $36.4-million contract.
SPECTOR’S NOTE: So much for the assumption Theodore would get a short-term bridge deal. The annual average value of this deal is $5.2 million, which is a considerable raise over his entry-level contract.
The 23-year-old defenseman was a restricted free agent. He’s a skilled puck-moving blueliner with considerable upside who’s expected to develop into a reliable top-pairing rearguard. If he reaches his full potential this new contract could become a wise long-term investment by the Golden Knights.
SPORTSNET: Forward Brian Gionta announced his retirement yesterday after 16 NHL seasons with the New Jersey Devils, Montreal Canadiens, Buffalo Sabres and Boston Bruins.
The 5’7″ winger debuted with the Devils in 2001-02 and helped them win the Stanley Cup in 2003. Gionta went on to captain the Canadiens and Sabres. He had seven 20-plus goal campaigns, including a career-high 48 goals in 2005-06, finishing with 291 goals and 304 assists for 595 points in 1,026 career games. He has accepted a developmental coach role with the Sabres.
SPECTOR’S NOTE: Best of luck to Gionta in his future endeavors.
THE SCORE: The New York Islanders signed free-agent defenseman Luca Sbisa to a one-year, $1.5-million contract.
SPECTOR’S NOTE: Sbisa was probably hoping for a more lucrative contract after playing a top-four role during the 2018 playoffs with the Vegas Golden Knights. If he pans out for the Isles this season he could earned a better contract with them.
STLTODAY.COM: St. Louis Blues forward Robby Fabbri is listed as day-to-day with a groin injury.
CBS SPORTS: The Florida Panthers released center Mark Letestu from his professional tryout offer.
SPECTOR’S NOTE: The Athletic’s Aaron Portzline speculated Letestu could get a two-way contract with the Columbus Blue Jackets.
TSN: The Edmonton Oilers released forward Scottie Upshall from his PTO.
NBC SPORTS: The city of Seattle is one step closer toward an NHL expansion franchise after the city council “unanimously approved plans for a privately funded $700 million renovation of KeyArena.”
SPECTOR’S NOTE: Behold! Good ol’ fashioned nightmare fuel!
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.
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.
Nate Schmidt receives 20-game suspension, notable remaining UFAs and more in your NHL morning coffee headlines.
LAS VEGAS REVIEW-JOURNAL: Golden Knights defenseman Nate Schmidt received a 20-game suspension for violating the NHL/NHLPA Performance Enhancing Substances Program, a charge he, his agent and the team denied yesterday. The league didn’t reveal what substance Schmidt tested positive for or when the test was conducted. His appeal was denied by an independent arbitrator.
In a statement yesterday, Schmidt professed his innocence, claiming he never knowingly ingested a banned substance. He said the trace amount was “consistent with environmental contamination that I could not possibly have prevented.”
Schmidt cited one expert who testified on his behalf claiming the amount of substance found in his system ” 7 billionths of a milligram/mL — as the equivalent of a pinch of salt in an Olympic-sized swimming pool.” Another who analyzed a sample of his hair concluded there was no evidence of intentional use. “The Vegas Golden Knights track players’ strength and performance metrics and my results have remained constant over the past year.”
The Golden Knights also released a statement supporting Schmidt, expressing their belief “that the presence of a trace of the banned substance was accidental and unintentional.”
SPECTOR’S NOTE: We don’t know the full details from the hearings or what Schmidt may have ingested. Going by his story, however, it appears the punishment received was unduly harsh and perhaps unjustified. It’s worth noting the Golden Knights are standing by Schmidt. It’ll be interesting to see if the league or the PA will issue a statement. it doesn’t sound as though there’s another appeal option for Schmidt.
In the meantime, Schmidt’s absence will leave a significant gap on their blueline early in the coming season that could force the Golden Knights to address via trade, free agency or waivers. I’ll have more in my Rumors section later this morning.
THE HOCKEY NEWS: Center Antoine Vermette, left wing Mike Cammalleri, right wing Lee Stempniak, defensemen Luca Sbisa and Cody Franson and goaltender Steve Mason are the notable veterans remaining in this summer’s unrestricted free agent market. Others include forwards Scott Hartnell and Daniel Winnik, blueliner Kevin Bieksa and goalie Kari Lehtonen.
SPECTOR’S NOTE: A handful of these players could earn one-year deals via professional tryout offers. The rest face continuing their playing careers in Europe or retirement.
TSN: Former Montreal Canadiens and Nashville Predators defenseman Alexei Emelin signed a three-year contract with KHL club Avangard Omsk.
THE ATHLETIC (subscription required): The Vancouver Canucks need a healthy Chris Tanev to return to form this season.