Posts Tagged NHL Expansion

Morning Hits: Expansion, Salary Cap, Draft Lottery, Combine, College UFAs and Comeau Suspension

  • Louis Jean: Gary Bettman: ”We have no expansion process or plan. We’re not there yet.”
  • Elliotte Friedman: GMs have been told that next season the salary cap will be within $1 to $2 million of what they had projected. They projected it would be around $71 million.
  • John Shannon: GMs were notified that the Devils will take part of the draft lottery if they miss the playoffs. If the Devils win the lottery, there will be full redraw. The Devils can only select 30th.
  • Darren Dreger: There may be possible changes to the draft lottery. NHL will work on a proposal.
  • Darren Dreger: The pre-draft combine will have some changes. It’s unlikely that team will be able to do individual testing after the combine. Elliotte Friedman: NHL considering fining teams who illegally test  players after the combine. Craig Custance: A GM estimates it costs about $1000 per player when a team bring someone in for a personal workout.
  • Chris Peters: Consensus is that this year’s college free agent crop isn’t deep. Kevin Czuczman (NYI) and Ryan Haggerty (NYR) were two of the bigger names and are already signed. Katie Strang: Haggerty will report to the Rangers and not Hartford of the AHL.
  • Blue Jackets Blake Comeau has been suspended for two games. Was this correct amount of games he should have received?

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Morning Notes: 2018 Olympics, Burrows, Hedberg, Avalanche and Daly Talks Seattle

  • Eric Duhatschek of the Globe and Mail: The NHL will come to a decision on whether they will participate in the 2018 Olympics in South Korea within the next six months according to deputy commissioner Bill Daly.

    “I can tell you, (a decision) shouldn’t take all that long,” said Daly, soon after arriving with the NHL contingent for what many believe could be the league’s last involvement with the Olympic Games. “It’s part of a broader discussion with the players association about what we’re doing internationally. That discussion is under way. I would anticipate a fairly quick resolution with respect to the Olympics – six months.”

  • Elliott Pap of the Vancouver Sun: Canucks coach John Tortorella said that Alex Burrows has a sprained hand from his fight with Phil Kessel and he is hoping that he’ll be ready to by the 19th. Tortorella on their injuries:

    “It’s awful sitting on the losing streak but, more important, it’s trying to get some health back. Hopefully Henrik will be ready to go. There is a long list of them here. I don’t want to use that as an excuse. We just have to be a better team. I am preparing a bit of a training camp for those first four days, the 19th-22nd. The way I’m approaching it when it our guys come back, it’s a clean slate. It’s a 22-game schedule and we’re in the fight of our life here. We let a lot of people back in. It’s not just one or two teams, it’s a number of teams.”

  • Tom Gulitti of the Bergon Record: The Devils have signed Johan Hedberg to a PTO with the Albany of the AHL and will be their second goalie as Keith Kinkaidrecovers from his groin strain.

    “Kinkaid is hurt and they needed another goalie and I was around and available, so here I am,” Hedberg said.

  • Mike Chambers of the Denver Post: The Avalanche are looking to host a Winter Classic or Stadium Series at Coors Field. The Colorado Rockies have said they are in talks with the Avalanche and the NHL.
  • Cam Tucker of Pro Hockey Talk: NHL deputy commissioner Bill Daly on the possibility of expansion to Seattle.

    “When that happens, I think Seattle will certainly be an intriguing marketplace from the league’s perspective,” NHL deputy commissioner Bill Daly recently told the Seattle Times.

    “I think we have a belief in the Pacific Northwest. It being good hockey territory. I think, obviously, the Canucks have done a fantastic job — in Vancouver, but also throughout British Columbia and the Pacific region — at driving interest in the sport.

    “So, we think the possibility is there. It’s kind of more obvious than some of the other areas. It doesn’t mean we’ve done our due diligence. We’d need to satisfy ourselves on the marketplace, but just the objective factors around the marketplace suggest Seattle would be a good hockey market.”

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Morning Hits: Expansion Cities, Selanne, Penguins Injuries, Josi, Fisher, O’Reilly and Thomas

  • David Shoatls: Tim Leiweke said that there won’t be a second team in the Toronto any time soon. First it will be Seattle and Quebec, then Vegas, with Kansas City a possibility.
  • Adam Kimelman: Ducks Teemu Selanne lost some teeth and his mouth was swollen and bloody after getting hit with a stick.
  • Rob Rossi: Penguins Chuck Kobasew is out three to four weeks. Beau Bennett could return to practice this week. James Neal is week to week.
  • Mike Organ: Predators Roman Josi will return this week from his concussion and will be in the second or third pairing. He’s been out for three weeks. Mike Fisher returned to practice after a maintenance day yesterday. He’s missed the last three road games last week with a lower-body injury.
  • Igor Eronko: Cal O’Reilly’s contract with Metallurg of the KHL has been terminated.
  • George Richards: Panthers coach Kevin Dineen said that Tim Thomas could practice with the team today.

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The Coyotes situation and Seattle … Relocation and/or expansion

  • Joe Yerdon of Pro Hockey Talk: From HNIC Hotstove: Glen Healy reports that if the deal with the City of Glendale doesn’t go through by July 2nd, the NHL would sell the team to Ray Bartoszek and Anthony Lanza for $220 million and then move the team to Seattle. Jeremy Roenick would be part of their hockey operations.
  • Chris Daniels of King 5 News: The Mayor of Seattle, Mike McGinn, has confirmed that he had spoken with Gary Bettman two weeks ago about bringing a team to Seattle and Key Arena this fall. Ray Bartoszek and Anthony Lanza are looking at buying the Coyotes to move them to Seattle.

    “I let him know of the situation here, and that we were supportive of bringing the NHL to Seattle,” McGinn said. “We have Key Arena, so we talked about the potential of them being in Key Arena, while we continue to work on a new arena plan.”

    The NHL has given the City of Glendale until June 25th to work out a new lease agreement with the latest prospective buyer. Bettman has said that the team could relocate if a deal can’t be worked out by June 25th. A team in Seattle would play at Key West for two years, which would seat about 11,000 for hockey.

    “I really want to bring down expectations. We are very clearly Plan B for the NHL and this team.  I feel compelled to say this after the experience we had with Sacramento than the likelihood of us having a team here in a couple of weeks is low.”

  • David Pagnotta: Behind all the talk of the Phoenix ownership talk is “expansion,” and it will come up more often in the near future. Seattle would be a candidate as well as Quebec City, Toronto/Markham. If the Coyotes were to move to Seattle, that would mean that Quebec City and Markham would be next on list for expansion. If the Coyotes were to remain in Glendale, Seattle and Quebec City would be at the top of the list. Other cities like Houston would get consideration, but that is awhile a way.

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Jamison-Coyotes deal to close by Thursday … Kelly said NHL talked expansion … New arena in Detroit?

  • Nick Cotsonika via twitter: Greg Jamison will reportedly close the deal to buy the Phoenix Coyotes before Thursday’s deadline.
  • Elliotte Friedman via twitter: Former NHLPA executive director, Paul Kelly, told [Markham] city council that the NHL had discussed expanding the NHL to 32 teams with him.
  • Brendan Savage of MLive: Red Wings owners, the Ilitch family, have privately suggested a new arena in Detroit that is owned by the state of Michigan. A $650 million multipurpose arena was proposed last year.

    “While the discussion in November was linked to ownership of the venue, nothing has been disclosed on how construction would be funded or by whom,” said the story written by Bill Shea. ”Sports arena financing deals often are a blend of tax dollars and private money, and the Ilitches have stated publicly that their intention is to make a “substantial investment” in what they want to be a public-private partnership.

    “The fund, which can sell low-interest bonds for projects, is an autonomous board within the quasi-public MEDC and was created in 1984 to promote economic development. The fund owns the Cadillac Place office building in Detroit’s New Center area and the Michigan House of Representatives Building (Anderson Office Building) in downtown Lansing, the MEDC said.”

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Avs-O’Reilly still far apart, trade looming? Despres available … Luongo waits … Coyotes dealine Thurs. … NHL expansion

  • Adrian Dater of the Denver Post: Dater notes that Avalanche fans may need to start contemplating the future of the team without center Ryan O’Reilly. The Avs and O’Reilly remain about $8 million apart on a long-term contract. A ‘bridge’ deal is possible, but they still vary on value. The Avs still have a 2 year, $7 million offer on the table. O’Reilly’s agent, Mark Guy, has disputed that he wants $5 million on a shorter deal, but there is no doubt he wants at least $4 million. On why they can’t go from $3.5 million up to the $4 million, or even $4.5 million with almost $18 million in cap room? Because they are stubborn, often displaying a “take it or leave it” mentality when they decide what a players worth in their minds. The Avalanche don’t want to trade him, but there is a list of players who have left after butting heads on money. Dater wonders if they should trade him or let him sit out the season? They could get something good for him, but would they be able to get something better later on? The best solution to Dater is to a get a deal done.
  • Rob Rossi of the Pittsburgh Tribune-Review: Rossi is hearing rumblings that the Penguins are looking for a winger, but nothing is close. Defenseman Simon Despres is available for the right price. The question is, is that price a veteran winger with short-tern future, or are they looking for the next James Neal type deal.
  • Ben Kuzma of the Vancouver Province: Roberto Luongo on still being a Canuck, and how it’s not easy to be in the backup role.

    “Of course, but I’ve put my ego aside here and I’m trying to work hard and do my best and be ready,” he’s said. “We all know, and it goes without saying, that both Cory and I want to play. We’re competitors but I’m not going to put myself ahead of the team.”

    Until GM Mike Gillis is able to a get a deal done and then able to ask Luongo about waiving he no-trade clause.

    “That’s what I told him,” said Luongo. “I don’t really want to be bothered on a day-to-day basis with that stuff and I’ve pretty much given him the green light to do whatever.”

  • Paul Giblin of the Arizona Republic: Glendale officials have no idea if potential Coyotes owner, Greg Jamison, will purchase the team by the deadline on Thursday. He needs to buy the Coyotes by then to secure the 20-year lease. If a deal isn’t reached by then, the lease agreement expire. The new council is not expected to extended the offer if Jamison can’t get a deal done in time. The current deal sees Jamison getting an average of $15 million a year for 20 years as part of a management agreement. New Glendale Mayor, Jerry Weiers has his doubts if it can get done by Thursday.

    “For the life of me, I can’t figure why, if everything is lined up, if he’s got the money in hand, why would he postpone this? That’s the only thing I haven’t been able to figure out,” Weiers said. “What would be the purpose of delaying it?”

    Jamison said last week,

    “We’re aware of what we have to do to get this closed. We’re working very hard to get there. So far, the anticipation is that we will get there. That’s kind of where we’re at, at the moment, and I probably wouldn’t take it much further than that.”

  • Allan Walsh via twitter: NHL expansion is happening. It’s has been on the NHL’s agenda since the lockout ended.

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NHL and NHLPA meeting today … NHLPA offer likely coming … Will NHLPA reject or counter-offer?

  • Bob McKenzie via twitter: McKenzie would be shocked if the league’s “final” offer (likely a week from now) didn’t go to a NHLPA vote.
  • Rob Rossi via twitter: The key is not the NHLPA offer, but how the NHL responds to it. Tom Gulitti via twitter: Guitti thinks that yesterday and today are key. The NHLPA doesn’t love the NHL’s proposal, but it’s how they respond to it.
  • John Shannon via twitter: “Part of NHLPA’s push back Thurs must include issues around NHL’s clarification of HRR and How they intend to make contracted players whole.”
  • Aaron Portzline via twitter: If the season starts on November 2nd, it allows for the All-Star game to be played on January 27th. If a they end up having to contract the schedual, the All-Star game will likely be cancelled.
  • Darran Dreger via twitter: Some people believe the NHLPA should have made an offer last week. Now they have to go off of the NHL’s offer and face public scrutiny.
  • Andy Strickland via twitter: Not all owners were aware that the NHL gave the NHLPA a proposal before the info was leaked to the media.

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Meetings this week are ‘huge’ … Large chunk of games could be cancelled … Drop-dead date for Winter Classic

  • Rob Rossi of the Pittsburgh Tribune-Review: The economic issues will be discussed at today’s meetings. Economic issues that need to be talked about are the division of revenue, escrow percentages, terms of contracts and expansion. Ratifying any new agreement wouldn’t take long. GMs are telling their coaches to prepare for about a week long training camp with possibility no exhibition games. The league is considering scrapping 4 weeks of games.
  • Adrian Dater via Sulia: Talked with player sources about today’s meetings, it will not contain any significant new proposal from the NHLPA.
  • Craig Custance of ESPN: The NHL can’t afford to miss another season.

    This league cannot afford two season-long lockouts. It simply cannot. Any owner foolish enough to believe any cost is worth paying to have the ability to crush the players for good and get the CBA that finally, in their minds, makes everything right doesn’t understand the psyche of the people that buy tickets to watch this incredible sport.

    I’m telling you now that there are fans who will never return if there’s no NHL this year.

  • Jimmy Murphy via twitter: An NHL industry source said that these next meetings are “huge” in determining if there will be a season.
  • Bruce Garrioch of the Ottawa Sun: More games will be cancelled this week, with the league cutting a larger chunk later this week. The owners would then be able to book replacement shows during the cancelled nights. If there is no labour deal by mid-November, the Winter Classic will likely be cancelled.
  • Greg Wyshynski via twitter: According to Ansar Khan on the MvsW podcast, November 20th may be the drop-dead date for the Winter Classic.
  • Chris Botta via twitter: The NHLs soft cancellation of games the first had no impact. League will go big this week.

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2 Canadian expansion teams? The no progress meetings … Crosby talks lockout

  • Jason Kay via twitter: There is strong speculation that Toronto and Quebec could get expansion teams once the new CBA is struck. More in The Hockey News October 29th issue.
  • Katie Strang via twitter: Steve Fehr said no proposal was made and there was no discussion on core economic issues yesterday. No meetings scheduled for today. Louis Jean via twitter: No face-to-face meeting until Sunday at the earliest. Monday is more likely.
  • Louis Jean via twitter: Jean has been told that the NHLPA likely won’t present an offer until the NHL shows some flexibility and willingness to compromise.
  • Renaud Lavoie via twitter: Steve Fehr, “we can resolve all the other issues in 6 hours if we got a deal on the major issues.”
  • Louis Jean via twitter: Cancelling of NHL games won’t happen in the next couple days, unclear when it could happen.
  • Allan Walsh via twitter: Several GMs have called Walsh and urged him to continue telling it like it is. (For those that don’t follow Walsh, he’s an agent, so VERY pro player.)
  • Darren Dreger via twitter: Don Fehr had a Q&A with some NY Rangers yesterday as some players are trying to make sense of the lockout.
  • Josh Yohe of the Pittsburgh Tribune-Review: Quotes from Sidney Crosby.

    “If you look at the offers,” he said, “I think they’re pretty clear. We’re willing to make a deal. There isn’t a deal to be made right now. There’s their deal. And there’s our deal. They want their deal. There is no real meeting (in the middle). They’ve drawn that line. Hopefully they understand that taking a stance like that is affecting a lot of people besides us.”

    On talk that players will give in, in November,

    “We’ve heard that talk,” he said. “I really hope that’s not the case. Everybody expects to negotiate in good faith. I hope they’re not stalling because they have a certain date in mind. That’s not the way to do it.”

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Crosby out 2 games … Brassard will eventually be traded … Kings injury update … Booth out 4-6 weeks … Will Sutton get suspended?

  • Pierre LeBrun of ESPN: The Penguins sent a news release out yesterday that Sidney Crosby will miss the next 2 games. He didn’t feel good after taking a hit on Monday against the Bruins.

    “He saw Dr. Micky Collins of UPMC today and took an ImPACT test, which showed no problems. However, we all think it’s best that he sits out the next two games as a precaution,” Pens GM Ray Shero said in a release.

    “We’re being cautious and keeping in mind he was off for a long time,’’ Shero later told via text message before a flight Wednesday evening. “Take a step back here and see how he feels in a few days.’’

    Michael Arace of the Columbus Dispatch: The Blue Jackets will probably trade Derick Brassard at some point. His career has stalled in Columbus and his agent sounded off on the coaching staff. Brassard has been a healthy scratch for 8 of the last 12 games. His trade value is not high at the moment. His $3.2 million cap hit may look better as the season goes on.

  • Pierre LeBrun chat on ESPN: LeBrun thinks if/when the NHL does decide to expand, another Toronto team, Quebec City and Seattle could work. Devils winger Zach Parise is not available for trade at the moment, but that could change later. Bobby Ryan could go back on the trade market if the Ducks continue to struggle. If Parise does become available, the Kings would be interested. Flames GM Jay Feaster wants to blow up the team but he has a dozen no-trade clauses to deal with.
  • Rich Hammond of the LA Kings Insider: Kings Alec Martinez is fully cleared and is able to return to the lineup when ever the coaches decide to insert him. Winger Justin Williams status for today is not known, he took a shot off his hand. Willie Mitchell’s status for tonight could be decided this morning. Murray did say that both Martinez and Mitchell won’t return tonight. Center Mike Richards hasn’t skated since last Thursday: Murray said: “Richards is progressing. That’s all I can say. That’s all I know, really. He’s in every day, riding the bike, getting more acclimated, getting exercise and a feel for his own self.’’
  • Iain MacIntyre of the Vancouver Sun: Canucks winger David Booth sprained his MCL on a knee-on-knee hit from the Avs Kevin Porter, and will be out 4 to 6 weeks. Coach Vigneault confirmed that Roberto Luongo will start in net tonight in Montreal. Bob McKenzie via twitter: Porter has a hearing with Brendan Shanahan today for the hit.
  • Kevin McGran of the Toronto Star: Maple Leafs winger Colby Armstrong is about a week away from returning from his high ankle sprain. “I had no clue what it would take,” said Armstrong. “It’s a battle. It’s a lingering bitch of an injury. But as soon as they let me go, I can’t wait to get out.”
  • Aaron Portzline via twitter: Blue Jackets winger Kristian Huselius will be out weeks with a groin injury. He’s been out 68 of the last 92 Blue Jackets games.
  • Oilers defenseman Andy Sutton could be looking at another suspension after his hit on Hurricanes Alexei Ponikarovsky. Do you think he’ll get suspended? How many games?

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Kuznetsov doesn’t know when he’s coming to N.A. … All quiet on Marchand front … A terrible list of NHL relocation/expansion cities

  • Alessandro Seren Rosso via twitter: Capitals prospect Evgeny Kuznetsov will head to the NHL but he doesn’t know when, “maybe tomorrow, maybe in 3 years, maybe in 1 year.”
  • Fluto Shinzawa of the Boston Globe: “Only crickets are being heard on the Brad Marchand front, with neither side amenable to disclosing information regarding negotiations.” Marchand’s deal could have an effect on what Tyler Ennis of the Sabres gets/is looking for in his next deal after this upcoming season. In Shea Weber’s arbitration hearing, Nashville used Keith Yandle and Dustin Byfuglien as comparables.
  • Steve MacFarland of the Calgary Sun: “The Business Journal” put out a list of cities that were the best candidates for NHL expansion or relocation. Quebec City was 31 of 58 North American cities. Hamilton was 33 behind Honlulu, Orlando and Tulsa.

    The Business Journals’ Top 10 markets for NHL expansion/relocation:
    1. Riverside-San Bernardino, Calif.
    2. Houston, Texas
    3. Bridgeport-Stamford, Conn.
    4. Las Vegas, Nev.
    5. Virginia Beach-Norfolk, Va.
    6. Providence, RI
    7. Austin, Texas
    8. Hartford, Conn.
    9. Sacramento, Calif.
    10. Richmond, Va.

    Here’s our list of five North American cities in which we’d like to see an NHL team:
    1. Quebec City
    2. Hamilton, Ont.
    3. Seattle, Wash.
    4. Hartford, Conn.
    5. Saskatoon, Sask.

  • Helene St. James of the Detroit Free Press: Red Wings forward Darren Helm had 32 points in 82 games last season. “Helm could end up centering the third line along with headlining the penalty-killing forward group in 2011-12. He’s a hard worker wherever he goes and is only going to get better.”

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Around the Boards: Ilya to LA? Governors to talk 2 teams in T.O.? Lightning and Capitals holding pat?

  • David Shoalts of the Globe and Mail: At upcoming NHL governors meetings, expect talk of a 2nd team in Toronto to be brought up, regardless if it’s not currently on the agenda.
  • ESPN: Their rumors section is suggesting that if Ilya Kovalchuk becomes available, the LA Kings might have an interest, with Dustin Brown as part of a bigger package.
  • Jim Matheson of the Edmonton Journal: Add Scott Walker to the list of Carolina Hurricanes players that are available for trade, but don’t expect him to be moved until around the trade deadline. He’ll be owed $600,000 after the deadline.
  • Damian Cristodero of the St. Petersberg Times: Despite their recent struggles, don’t expect the Tampa Bay Lightning to start making moves. ”One of the things that has happened here, in my opinion, the last few years, it has been panic at times,” he said. “You’re not going to see that. It’s slow and steady. It’d be nice to make three blockbuster trades and be first in our division two weeks from now, but it doesn’t work that way.”
  • Corey Masisak of the Washington Times: The Capitals now have a bit of Salary Cap flexibility with Nylander off of their cap numbers, but they are not expected to do anything just yet.
  • Helene St. James of the Detroit Free Press: The Detroit Red Wings have lost another player to injury. Defenceman Jonathan Ericsson injured his left knee and will be out for at least 2 weeks.

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