We analyzed the new Pittsburgh Penguins lines and general manager Ron Hextall’s work. There is more contract drama with the Calgary Flames as they elected to take Matthew Tkachuk to arbitration after failing to sign him to a long-term deal. And the Winnipeg Jets are having a similar problem getting Pierre-Luc Dubois to sign a contract, which is spurring the NHL trade rumors.
And our Flyers beat writer went one-on-one with John Tortorella. That’s always fun. Always.
I suppose we’ve hit the stage in the NHL offseason where the news begins to trickle, and Canadian writers hit their lakehouse, but we’ll be here every day … whether you want us or not!
Pittsburgh Hockey Now: You can criticize either of the Penguins’ trades on Saturday. Criticize the Evgeni Malkin and Kris Letang contracts. However, as Dave Molinari writes, the one thing you cannot criticize anymore is Ron Hextall’s guts. Pittsburgh Penguins analysis.
After that flurry of moves on Saturday, the Penguins’ lines have a new look. We put them on paper, and I concede that they do not look like a finished product. Including some debate and explanation, here’s our best effort to lay out the new Penguins lineup.
NHL Trade Talk, News & National Hockey Now
Calgary: The Flames, not Matthew Tkachuk, filed for arbitration. Our Calgary scribe Steve Macfarlane writes that we may know Tkachuk’s true intentions — does he want out of Calgary? — very soon. Calgary Flames worries.
The NHL trade rumors will be intense if Tkachuk hits the market. There will also be a line of teams trying to clear enough salary and about 31 other fanbases clamoring for their team to get him.
Sportsnet Winnipeg: Pierre-Luc Dubois. Wanted out of Columbus. Does he want out of Winnipeg, too? Or is he just unable to agree on his value with the Winnipeg Jets?
Philly Hockey Now: Our Flyers scribe Sam Carchidi spoke with Torts. It was an exclusive chat. John Tortorella unplugged.
NYI Hockey Now: Alexander Romanov is safe and sound in the U.S. The Russian player was feared to be one of those having trouble getting out of Mother Russia, but now we have visual proof that he left (or escaped). The New York Islanders d-man is safe.
Detroit: Many teams are cap-strapped. The Red Wings have a good bit of cap space and more chips for the NHL trade table. If the season began today, the Detroit Red Wings would have about $7.5 million.
Vancouver: Is prospect goalie Michael DiPietro a prospect, a trade chip, or both? Vancouver Canucks chatter.