Dan’s Daily: Jets ‘Disgusted’ After Ouster, Tristan Jarry in Demand?
The first team to punch their ticket to Round Two is the Vegas Golden Knights. They took care of the increasingly disinterested and soft Winnipeg Jets, whose coach was “disgusted.” The New Jersey Devils have their stride now and again flew past the New York Rangers. You didn’t think Tampa Bay would go quietly, did you? In the Daily, we’ve got the rest of the NHL Stanley Cup playoffs news, and other teams are starting to look at Pittsburgh Penguins goalie Tristan Jarry as a solution. In case the Penguins have a GM sooner than later, we also did the homework and narrowed down the next contract for Jason Zucker.
There were some direct comparables for Zucker, which made the process easier.
I want to take a moment in this space to thank our Vegas Golden Knights beat reporter Owen Krepps. Owen is finishing up his tour of duty in Vegas over the next couple of days and moving back to PA. He was our former intern, then covered VGK remotely, and decided he wanted to cover them in person. We did everything we could to make it a reality. Living so far from family and friends isn’t easy, but he provided us with a solid season of VGK coverage. I’m sure we’ll hear more from Owen.
I’m headed out to Las Vegas for the next few weeks to continue the coverage. Being in Vegas and working every night will be a special kind of torture. We have an exciting new hire who will take over the beat, but I’ll hold the fort and PHN during this incredibly dull moment of Penguins coverage.
Pittsburgh Penguins / Steelers, Pirates:
Pittsburgh Hockey Now: Pen to paper before NHL free agency begins. The risks and valuations for both sides of a Jason Zucker contract.
The football gods smiled upon the Pittsburgh Steelers. They moved up to No. 14 to get their man, a jumbo tackle who can do some damage (when motivated). The Steeles made a splash. Get the draft grade and more — Hello, Broderick Jones.
Hmmm. Joey Porter Jr. is still on the board. So, too, is top safety Brian Branch. And a stud QB is on the board, which could entice more Steelers trade activity. Here’s the Day 2 Steelers draft primer.
Pittsburgh Baseball Now:
First, a tribute to Pirates, Pitt, and Duke legend Dick Groat, who passed away at 92.
On the diamond, the Mitch Keller Express rolled through LA with 10 strikeouts and another resounding Pittsburgh Pirates win.
Was that a statement win for the Pirates?
NHL News, Stanley Cup Playoffs, & National Hockey Now:
Detroit Hockey Now: Tristan Jarry. Could the Red Wings take a run at him to upgrade their net? Jarry is one of a few goalies Kevin Allen circled as prime targets for the Detroit Red Wings.
I speak from experience, when Kevin writes stories like that, everyone should pay attention. His contacts and friends are the best in hockey.
Vegas Hockey Now: It’s over! The VGK steamrolled Winnipeg in Game 5 to close out the series. The Vegas Golden Knights advance.
TSN: Winnipeg Jets coach Rick Bowness wasn’t happy with his team. Usually, a coach takes the final press conference to express disappointment or sadness at the season’s end, but Bowness was “disgusted” and wholeheartedly ripped his team.
Expect sweeping changes on the tundra. If we find a solid (and thawed) hockey writer in Winnipeg, I’m all about that market next season.
Sportsnet: The Tampa Bay Lightning and Toronto Maple Leafs are engaged in a battle to the hockey death. It’s riveting, and it is some fantastic hockey. Tampa blew a massive lead in Game 4 but made no mistake in Game 5, putting all the pressure on Toronto in Game 6. Toronto media is amplifying the pressure. The Leafs are searching for answers as Tampa Bay wins Game 5.
LA Hockey Now: Speaking of getting uptight, the Kings also blew a big lead and will face elimination tonight. The LA Kings need some adjustments.
AP: Geez, would someone get some local coverage of the New Jersey Devils?! (Yes, we’ve hired someone who is waiting for a contractual relationship to expire. We’re begging another outlet to let him go). With a rookie goalie, the Devils controlled the game and pushed the Rangers to the brink with a 4-0 win.
Colorado Hockey Now: And here’s the story we don’t want to talk about, and it’s bad on several levels, including a possible criminal connection. Team officials checked on Valeri Nichushkin before Game 3 but found an intoxicated Russian woman in his hotel room, who told police a “bad man” had taken her passport. She had to be transported to the hospital. Valeri Nichuskin hasn’t played since Game 2.
The Avalanche declined to comment but has stated Nichuskin’s absence isn’t disciplinary.
Like you, I’m human. When Russians are involved, I get suspicious of a murderous dictator…