It’s the mid-day edition of the Dan’s Daily after a wicked early flight from Philly to Tampa and the Pittsburgh Penguins’ baffling performance against the Philadelphia Flyers. Fans want someone to pay for the flatlined power play with their job. The Penguins locker room is as bewildered as you, and it’s clearly bleeding into the even-strength play. Elsewhere in the Daily, the ballyhooed premiere of new Detroit Red Wings winger Patrick Kane is on hold. The NHLPA has paid off its debt to the owners for the pandemic season, and expansion is very much on the NHL’s mind, even if not officially.
Now that it’s all said, done, and paid, I’ll put this in print one last time: The owners absolutely conned the players for that COVID debt. Average franchise values are through the roof. The Fenway Sports Group paid an astounding sum for the Penguins that far exceeded the expected $550 million price tag.
Owners make their money with the increased valuation of their franchises. To make the players pick up the check after the world ended was small time, bordering on petty. More than a few careers were squashed with the flat cap, and more than a few players lost significant career earnings.
The owners lost what? I suppose they didn’t get their money back with interest. The tragedy.
But if I ever go to a boardroom war, I want Gary Bettman on my side of the table. That’s certain.
Where to begin? I’m sure you don’t need the down-and-dirty details of the Penguins’ postgame recap.
Here’s the thing to read today. The Penguins report card. It has far more than the superficial details. The hows, whys, and reactions. The Penguins are in trouble but by their own hand. Get the grades and Penguins analysis.
PHN Video: The locker room was as you might expect. Bryan Rust didn’t hold back. Stick tap to Rust for facing the media almost every day for the last couple of weeks. He’s taking the brunt of the coverage, but he’s also playing some of his best hockey. The coach is mad, the defenseman is frustrated, and it’s a dour scene in the Penguins locker room.
Video Q&A: Oh, this one was dark, literally and figuratively. The questions, ouch. If some Penguins fans had their way, the only people left on the bench would be the equipment managers. Here’s the postgame Penguins Q&A.
Philly Hockey Now: Our Jon Bailey has the Flyers locker room covered. I’ve been enjoying his coverage and met him in person for the first time Monday night (he seemed a little shy of the boss, which always makes me laugh. Me? The boss??)
Anyhoo–Tyson Foerster ripped a short-side wrister past Alex Nedeljkovic for the Flyers’ lone regulation goal. Foerster is becoming quite the star for the Philadelphia Flyers.
NHL Trade Talk, News & National Hockey Now
One quick news hit in untraditional fashion for the mid-day version: Buffalo Sabres BMOC Tage Thompson will return to the lineup tonight.
Sportsnet: The NHL Board of Governors meeting in Seattle is thus far long on insinuation and short on specifics. However, the players’ debt to owners for the COVID season is paid in full, and more expansion is percolating.
TSN: The Calgary Flames are playing better, but what should the Flames
Detroit Hockey Now: It would have been a nearly perfect debut–Patrick Kane playing his first game with the Winged Wheel in his hometown, Buffalo. But alas, here’s the full scoop on the Detroit Red Wings news.
Calgary Hockey Now: Here’s bad news for Calgary, so adjust your fantasy rosters accordingly. Jacob Markstrom is out for weeks with a busted finger. A recall and an injury update for the Calgary Flames.
Boston Hockey Now: More NHL trade talk–would Pat Maroon make sense for the Boston Bruins?
TSN: And what should the Toronto Maple Leafs give up for Chris Tanev?
I think Penguins president of hockey operations/GM Kyle Dubas should be kicking the tires on Tanev. The funny thing–I put that in a recent Daily headline, and even some smart hockey fans (and family) cried out–We don’t need Brandon Tanev!
No, not Brandon, but a gritty RHD? While Calgary is selling pending UFAs, perhaps they have a power play fixer up there, too. I’ve never seen a power play this busted. I mean, it’s … just wow.