Tuesday, October 28, 2014

Updates from some previous blog posts and other news from around the NHL

From my article on September 3 , I mentioned that Charlie Coyle was going to be a restricted free agent at the end of this season. He’s not going anywhere. Coyle and the Wild agreed to a 5 year, $16 million deal. Coyle was not the only Wild player to come to terms on a contract extension, Jonas Brodin signed a new deal with the Wild worth $25 million over six years. Both deals were announced last week. (The article's here at Training Camp Starts on Sept. 18). Erik Haula and Mikael Granlund are due to become restricted free agents at the end of this season. I wouldn't be surprised if they sign extensions before the season's over. 

In other Minnesota Wild news, the line of Matt Cooke, Ryan Carter, and Jason Zucker have combined for 7 goals and 7 assists. Jason Zucker is the leading the Wild in goals scored with 5. 

Los Angeles Kings forward Anze Kopitar
This is an interesting situation …The Los Angeles Kings and Philadelphia Flyers are playing tonight. However, the Kings will not have a full roster for this game tonight. Kings defenseman Slava Voynov is currently suspended as a result of his arrest on domestic violence charges. As a result of a cap situation (Voynov is still being paid while he’s suspended), the Kings will not be able to call up a player to take the place of forward Anze Kopitar, who is out because of an upper-body injury, and will play 11 forwards. The Kings have to have cap space available for if (and when) Voynov is reinstated.  As of right now, the Kings have had conversations with the league about some possible cap relief due to this situation, but nothing has come from it. 

Ottawa Senators and New Jersey Devils players honoring 2 slain
Canadian Forces Members
This past Saturday night, the Ottawa Senators, Montreal Canadiens, and Toronto MapleLeafs jointly honored two Canadian Armed Forces members who were killed last week in two separate attacks. Warrant Officer Patrice Vincent, 53, was killed on October 20 outside of Montreal when he and a Canadian Forces colleague were both struck by a car (the suspect was later killed by police). Cpl. Nathan Cirillo, 24, was killed last Wednesday when he was shot while standing guard at the National War Memorial before the shooting attack on Parliament Hill in Ottawa (the league rescheduled the Ottawa-Toronto game to Nov. 9 in wake of the shooting attack). The Pittsburgh Penguins had the Canadian National Anthem sung before their game last Wednesday night before their game with the Philadelphia Flyers in showing of support following the shootings. 

With the NHL having recently done events for their annual “Hockey Fights Cancer,” the Pittsburgh Penguins have announced that 20-year-old defenseman Olli Maatta will undergo surgery next week to remove a potentially cancerous tumor from his neck. According to ESPN.com, the tumor was found during a pre-season physical and he underwent further tests, but was cleared to play.  He will be out for at least four weeks while recovering from surgery. I would like to wish him good luck, along with a speedy and full recovery. (This is the second health scare in as many seasons for the Penguins. Defenseman Kris Letang suffered a minor stroke last season. Letang has since made a full recovery and has returned to the ice.)

New York Rangers' defenseman John Moore is looking at a suspension on his illegal hit to the head on Erik Haula during last night's game (Moore received a match penalty for that hit, which means the hit is automatically reviewed). John Moore is a repeat offender, as he was suspended last year for the same hit to the head against Montreal's Dale Weise (in which he received a two game suspension). Moore has an in-person hearing with the league's Department of Player Safety and is looking at a suspension of at least 5 games--possibly more. The Rangers' Chris Kreider was also ejected from last night's game as a result of the boarding penalty and game misconduct for his hit on Jonas Brodin. Kreider will not be facing additional punishment from the league for that hit. 

While I was typing this article, I did see an article come across twitter that "Mr. Hockey" Gordie Howe suffered a stroke. From taking a quick glance at the article from prohockeytalk.nbcsports.com, it's being reported that Howe suffered the stroke on Sunday and that he's unable to stand without assistance and he's had difficulty speaking.  My thoughts go out to Mr. Hockey and his family during this time. 

It's been a busy and crazy week in the National Hockey League. 

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