- Sean Leahy at Puck Daddy1 hr ago
When the Minnesota Wild made the Devan Dubnyk six-year extension official on Monday, it finally cemented — for now, at least — their goaltening, which has been a game of musical chairs for the past couple of seasons.
Before Dubnyk, Niklas Backstrom was the rock in the Wild net, starting at least 45 games between 2007-08 and 2011-12. But injuries have kept him off the ice over the last few seasons, opening the door for a handful of contenders for the No. 1 job.
The latest injury for the 37-year old Backstrom has affected his right elbow, which caused nerve damage leaving him unable to use his right hand to help do simple everyday things like drive a car or use a phone.
In an interview with MTV 3’s Timo Kunnari of Finland, Backstrom revealed he initially injured his arm during preseason and aggravated it in the spring.
- Greg Wyshynski at Puck Daddy1 hr ago
Slava Voynov began his 90-day jail term this week after he pled “no contest” to charges of “corporal injury to a spouse,” which is a misdemeanor. The defenseman remains suspended by the NHL for the incident and suspended by the Los Angeles Kings for injuring himself during recreational activities, because the Kings apparently have their priorities in order. (Sighs deeply…)
While Voynov’s future in the NHL remains nebulous, it’s clear that he’s going to have a cushioned landing in the Kontinental Hockey League if he chooses that route.
Sergei Gomolyako, general manager of Traktor Chelyabinsk, told TASS in Russia that Voynov would be welcomed back to the team.
- Josh Cooper at Puck Daddy1 hr ago
In the summer of the non-offer sheet it wasn’t another team in North America that spurred Blues General Manager Doug Armstrong to sign RFA forward Vladimir Tarasenko to an eight-year $60 million contract.
It was the fear of the young, Russian forward going to the Kontinental Hockey League that helped lead to the mega-bucks deal.
Via Jeremy Rutherford of the St. Louis Post-Dispatch.
Army admitted that Tarasenko having #KHL as an option was more worrisome to him than an offer sheet. He said Tarasenko never played KHL card
Even though this does note Tarasenko and his agent Mike Liut didn’t overtly use the KHL as leverage, this is fascinating on a few levels.
For one, the NHL and the KHL could not come to some level of reciprocity on players who wanted to switch leagues. Contracts will continued to be honored in both league for the next year.
- Jen Neale at Puck Daddy3 hrs ago
Here are your Puck Headlines: A glorious collection of news and views collected from the greatest blogosphere in sports and the few, the proud, the mainstream hockey media. Have a link you want to submit? Email us at firstname.lastname@example.org.
• All NHL team official mascots, like our friend Youppi!, will be featured in NHL16. [Operation Sports]
• "20 Questions with Don Cherry: On his move to Rogers, criticizing P.K. Subban and autograph requests from exotic dancers." [National Post]
• The Washington Capitals have been very busy this off-season with big moves. Translating all this shuffling into success will be seen in the post-season. [Bleacher Report]
- Greg Wyshynski at Puck Daddy4 hrs ago
Vladimir Tarasenko’s newly signed 8-year, $60-million contract is a blockbuster contract. But unlike most blockbusters, its director had a firm handle on the budget.
GM Doug Armstrong made the restricted free agent the team’s priority, and paid him as such: Tarasenko’s $7.5 million cap hit makes the 23-year-old the highest paid member of the Blues, eclipsing Paul Stastny’s free-agent bonanza ($7 million) and Alex Pietrangelo’s own second-contract jackpot ($6.5 million).
According to Andy Strickland, the Tarasenko deal breaks down as follows, starting in 2015-16 through 2022-23: $8 million in the first two years, $7 million in the next two, $9.5 million, then $5.5 million, then $9.5 million and then $5 million. Fun!
(Interesting dips around the 2021-22 season, after which the Collective Bargaining Agreement expires. He makes $5.5 million the year before the next lockout and then $9.5 million during the lockout!)
- Sean Leahy at Puck Daddy4 hrs ago
Mikkel Boedker was one of 23 NHL players to file for arbitration on Sunday. And like many instances of a planned arbitration hearing, the forward and the Arizona Coyotes won’t need to sit down in a Toronto conference room to have a third-party decide on his new contract.
On Tuesday, Boedker, who was a restricted free agent, and the Coyotes agreed to a one-year, $3.75 million deal, per the Arizona Republic’s Sarah McLellan.
"We are pleased to sign Mikkel," said Coyotes GM Don Maloney in a statement. "He is an important player for us and we look forward to having him back next season.”
- Josh Cooper at Puck Daddy4 hrs ago
The Chicago Blackhawks locked up a defenseman Tuesday. No, not the guy with amazing abs. They re-signed Trevor van Riemsdyk to a two-year contract worth $1.65 million total. It’s a one-way deal.
Rejoice Chicago fans with TVR jerseys who were horrified he would also be part of a long line of Hawks to vacate Chicago this summer.
Said van Riemsdyk’s agent via ESPN Chicago:
"We are pleased to be able to extend Trevor van Riemsdyk's contract with the Blackhawks," his agent Alec Schall said. "The organization has been great to Trevor, and he has made the best of the opportunities that they have presented to him."
- Greg Wyshynski at Puck Daddy5 hrs ago
Every movement needs a visionary. Travis White may be that visionary.
White is a city councilor in Proctor, Minnesota. It’s a city in the northern part of the state whose population was just over 3,000 people in the 2010 census; but it’s located just outside of Duluth and roughly four and a half hours away from Grand Forks, North Dakota.
And Travis White believes it should be home to a National Hockey League expansion team.
“Hockey is the number one sports in northern Minnesota,” said White, via the Grand Forks Herald. "With the window of opportunity here where the NHL is looking at expanding and the history that we have up here of hockey, it would be a no-brainer.”
The NHL team is the latest part of a sports Mecca plan for the area from White. His resolution to support an NFL team returning to the area – the Duluth Eskimos were a thing from 1923-27 – was approved in May. He has designs to build a minor league baseball stadium as well.
- Sean Leahy at Puck Daddy7 hrs ago
The NHL opened its expansion process on Monday, with interested parties able to submit bids to potentially become the league’s 31st and/or 32nd team.
Some of the markets we know will be submitting bids: Las Vegas, Quebec City, Seattle (which may possibly send in two bids), and Southern Ontario — at least, that’s what representatives have said on the record.
Not jumping into the expansion pool, as we discussed on Monday, is Kansas City, which has a shiny building, but no one willing to step up and help bring a team there at the moment.
To get started in the bid process, there is $1 million application fee, according to TSN’s Frank Seravalli. Only some of that is refundable. What won’t be refundable is the expansion fee which will likely start at $500 million should you be awarded a franchise. (That sound you heard was Bill Foley opening his check book for Las Vegas.)
- Greg Wyshynski at Puck Daddy7 hrs ago
Let’s say you’re one of the 7,300 fans that watched an Edmonton Oilers intrasquad scrimmage in which No. 1 overall pick Connor McDavid made his debut.
Let’s say his team scored eight goals in the 40 minutes of 4-on-4 (no hit) hockey and then seven minutes of 3-on-3. What did you expect from him?
To better understand McJesus’s debut in front of his parishioners, we’ve created a handy chart:
Yes, five goals. Good to see McDavid is setting the bar rather low for his rookie season.
Here’s a look at his performance in the annual Billy Moores Cup at Rexall Place. You’ll have to suffer through the eight goals he didn’t score to see the ones he did.
Gotta love fans that’ll toss their caps on the ice for an intrasquad scrimmage hat trick.
"It was fun. Anytime you get a chance to play in front of fans like that, it's always exciting," McDavid said. "It was pretty competitive, just with the guys that we had, and they made a lot of great plays out there."