NHL Morning Coffee Headlines – July 20, 2017

NHL Morning Coffee Headlines – July 20, 2017

Buffalo Sabres winger Kyle Okposo will skate in a summer league in Minnesota.

Latest on Kyle Okposo, Colton Parayko and more in your NHL morning coffee headlines. 

STLTODAY.COM: Blues defenseman Colton Parayko has his arbitration hearing today. Parayko seeks a one-year, $4.85 million contract while the Blues countered with two-year proposals of $3.4 million and $3.6 million annually. 

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Given Parayko’s value to the Blues defense corps, I’ll be surprised if they gets settled by an arbiter. I can see the two sides settling on a multi-year deal worth around $4 million annually. Parayko isn’t the only player slated for arbitration today. Also on the docket are the Detroit Red Wings and forward Tomas Tatar.

**UPDATE** The Blues avoided arbitration this morning with Parayko, re-signing him to a five-year, $27.5 million contract. 

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Told you Parayko wouldn’t go before arbitration. His annual cap hit is higher ($5.5 million) than I expected but this is still a worthwhile contract for the Blues, locking up a rising young blueline star to a reasonable long-term deal. In just two seasons, the 24-year-old emerged as an invaluable part of the Blues’ defense corps. He finished last season with 35 points and logged over 21 minutes of ice time per game. 

 WGR 550: Buffalo Sabres winger Kyle Okposo is returning to the ice for the first time since a health scare on March 27. He’ll be skating with several current and former NHL players in a four-on-four summer league in Minnesota. 

SPECTOR’S NOTE: This bodes well for Okposo’s anticipated return to NHL action in 2017-18.


SPORTSNET’s Elliotte Friedman reported  the Ottawa Senators are pitching a one-year, $1-million contract proposal to forward Ryan Dzingel, who’s seeking a one-year, $1.95 million deal. His arbitration hearing is slated for July 21. 

SUN SENTINEL: The Florida Panthers signed 2017 first-round pick (tenth overall) Owen Tippett to a three-year entry-level contract. 

NBC SPORTS: Tampa Bay Lightning hired former NHL defenseman Ken Klee as an assistant coach with their AHL affiliate in Syracuse.

SPORTSNET: The AHL is allowing players on minor league contracts to participate in the 2018 Winter Olympics.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: If the NHL remains firm in its decision not to take part in the ’18 Winter Games ( and I don’t see suggesting otherwise), I’m assuming players in the AHL on two-way NHL contracts will be considered ineligible. 

THE NEWS & OBSERVER: Financial news website Wall St. 24/7 published a report claiming the Carolina Hurricanes saw a 32 percent drop in attendance over the past 10 years. 

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Missing the playoffs nine times in that decade undoubtedly contributed to that decline. With rare exceptions (hello there, Edmonton and Toronto), fans will not turn out to support a perennial loser. And no, that’s not a shot at fans of those two markets. Merely pointing out the obvious.

That’s also not a knock against Carolina hockey supporters. In most markets, fans will stop coming if the team shows no sign of improvement over a prolonged period of time. You’ve gotta give your fans something worth coming out for. For the past decade, Hurricanes followers have had little to cheer about. 


NHL Morning Coffee Headlines – June 23, 2017

NHL Morning Coffee Headlines – June 23, 2017

The Arizona Coyotes mutually part ways with head coach Dave Tippett.

On the eve of the 2017 NHL Draft, the Arizona Coyotes part ways with Dave Tippett. Details and more notable news in your morning coffee headlines. 

 ARIZONA SPORTS: The Arizona Coyotes announced it has mutually parted ways with long-time head coach Dave Tippett regarding some philosophical differences over the running of the team.

Tippett reportedly wasn’t happy with trading away goaltender Mike Smith and how the club handled its decision not to re-sign captain Shane Doan. None of the other members of the coaching staff were let go. 

SPECTOR’S NOTE: It’s no coincidence these recent changes took place after Andrew Barroway became the Coyotes’ sole owner earlier this month. The timing of Tippett’s departure, however, could cause some difficulty for the Coyotes on the eve of the 2017 NHL Draft, as he had considerable input regarding player management decisions. 

NHL.COM: With the first overall selection in the 2017 NHL Draft, the New Jersey Devils could end up choosing either Nolan Patrick or Nico Hischier. Both are considered the top-two prospects in this year’s draft.

CHICAGO TRIBUNE: The Chicago Blackhawks are expected to place winger Marian Hossa ($5.25 million annual cap hit) on long-term injury reserve for next season. Hossa will sit out the 2017-18 season because of a serious skin allergy related to his hockey equipment.

“A source said the most likely route the Hawks will take to replace Hossa is the “in-season” injured reserve approach. The means the Hawks will carry Hossa and his cap hit on the roster to start the season, then place him on injured reserve after the season begins.” That move would give the Blackhawks more flexibility with their roster during the season.

They could also attempt to trade Hossa’s rights to a club in need of reaching the $55.4 million salary cap minimum, but the Blackhawks could be reluctant to do that because it’s uncertain if his playing career is over. 

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Some consider the timing of Hossa’s decision to skip next season suspicious because it could provide the cap-strapped Blackhawks with salary-cap relief. However, I doubt there’s anything fishy about this. Hossa’s suffered with this rare skin condition for some time and the medication he was taking to address the problem carried potential long-term health concerns. It remains to be seen if this brings about the end of his long playing career.

THE PROVINCE: The Vancouver Canucks are considering a one-year, bonus-laden contract offer for goaltender Ryan Miller. 

SPORTSNET’s Chris Johnston reports the Edmonton Oilers will match any offer sheet for restricted free agent forward Leon Draisaitl. 

NBC SPORTS: The Vegas Golden Knights reportedly aren’t interested in trading defensemen Shea Theodore and Nate Schmidt.

MIAMI HERALD: The Florida Panthers hired Chris Pronger as an adviser to general manager Dale Tallon. 

TRIBLIVE.COM: The Pittsburgh Penguins re-signed  defenseman Chad Ruhwedel to a two-year contract worth $650K annually.

NHL.COM: The league released its schedule for 2017-18. The curtain rises on October 4, 2017.