NHL Morning Coffee Headlines – August 14, 2013.

Evgeni Malkin’s father suggests the Dallas Stars may have sent a contract offer to his son, the Stars react to the report, an update on the sale of the New Jersey Devils, Colorado Avalanche to retire Adam Foote’s number, and more.

Dallas Stars deny tampering with Evgeni Malkin's contract talks.

Dallas Stars deny tampering with Evgeni Malkin’s contract talks.

PITTSBURGH TRIBUNE-REVIEW: Evgeni Malkin’s father recently told a Russian newspaper his son rejected a contract offer from the Dallas Stars to re-sign with the Penguins. Malkin’s agent, J.P. Barry, said his client never entertained thoughts of signing with another team, describing negotiations with the Penguins as quick and “super-smooth”. Barry also said Malkin’s parents weren’t involved at any point in his client’s contract negotiations.

DALLAS MORNING NEWS: Stars GM Jim Nill issued a statement denying his club tampered with Malkin’s contract negotiations. The NHL doesn’t appear to be investigating the matter.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: If the Stars did make a contract offer to Malkin, they would’ve violated the league’s anti-tampering rules. I’ve also heard speculation perhaps the Stars contacted the Malkin camp to point out his good friend Sergei Gonchar was now on their roster if he were interested in testing the UFA market in 2014. That, too, would’ve been tampering.

The Penguins would’ve had to give the Stars permission to speak with Malkin, or allow Malkin to speak to rival teams. Otherwise, a team cannot contact a player on another team who’s under contract, which Malkin was at that time. Jim Nill has worked in management for years, and understands the NHL’s anti-tampering rules. If the Stars had contacted the Penguins to pitch a trade for Malkin, that’s a different story, but there’s no evidence that happened, only baseless rumors. Maybe the comments by Malkin’s dad were misconstrued, or perhaps he’s guilty of embellishing his story to prove how much his son loves playing in Pittsburgh.

NJ.COM: The potential sale of the New Jersey Devils to Philadelphia 76ers owner Josh Harris could be completed by Thursday.

SI.COM: Stu Hackel believes whoever purchases the Devils will face challenges to raise the club’s profile and boost its attendance.

CSNNE.COM: Joe Haggerty noted a photo of Boston Bruins captain Zdeno Chara posing with Chicago Blackhawks forward Marian Hossa (his friend and neighbor in Slovakia) in front of the Stanley Cup. While considering it good sportsmanship on Chara’s part (Hossa’s Blackhawks defeated Chara’s Bruins to win the Cup in June) to attend his friend’s Stanley Cup party, Haggerty questioned Chara’s wisdom posing for the picture.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: I doubt anyone on the Bruins has a problem with this. If the comments to Haggerty’s column are anything to go by, Bruins fans also aren’t concerned. Much ado about nothing here. When I saw the photo, my reaction was, “Cool, two of Slovakia’s greatest players, both of whom are Stanley Cup champions, posing with the big mug. Nice picture!”

DENVER POST: The Colorado Avalanche will retire Adam Foote’s number 52 during a ceremony on November 2.

MONTREAL GAZETTE: Former Canadiens forward Chris Nilan denied the Stanley Cup ring owned by notorious Boston mobster James “Whitey” Bulger belongs to him.


  1. My bet about the Dallas issue is that when Dallas aquired Gonchar, Gonchar brought up Malkin and Nill said something like “if he does hit UFA we’d probably throw 10m a year at him” and Gonchar then texted Malkin saying “if your interested in changing teams next year, Nill said they’d give you like $10m per”. Anyway just a guess, but if it was something like this I doubt it would be interpreted as tampering.

    • Yes, it would if there was an investigation.

  2. I had similar idea only that Gonchar made up a number andsaid to Malkin would you come to Dallas so we can play together? Even if they offered you 10 million? Either way, I do not think there was any tampering thar went on. I mean why bother? Malkin seemed happy in in Pittsburgh and everybody knew they would throw a boat load of money at him. Was not going to happen this time around.

  3. Cant see Calgary being interested even if Rammo goes down, I think they will play it out with McDonald & Irving. I dont think they would need to give up young assets in the event that they are truly rebuilding. Never know tho with Feaster I guess.