NHL Morning Coffee Headlines – June 30, 2014

Reaction to the Sam Gagner trade, the Lightning trade Nate Thompson to Anaheim, an update on Ryan Johansen’s contract talks, Tim Murray puts his stamp on the Sabres, and a warning for Martin Brodeur. 

Lightning trade Nate Thompson to the Ducks.

Lightning trade Nate Thompson to the Ducks.

ARIZONA REPUBLIC: Coyotes GM Don Maloney feels he’s suitably replaced the recently-bought out Mike Ribeiro by acquiring Sam Gagner in a three-team trade from Tampa Bay. As part of the deal, the Lightning agreed to pick up a third of Gagner’s salary, meaning the Coyotes will pay $3.33 million of his $5 million annual salary.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: My take on the trade here

TSN.CA: The Tampa Bay Lightning last night deal forward Nate Thompson to the Anaheim Ducks for a fourth and seventh-round picks in the 2015 NHL Draft.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Accoring to CapGeek the Bolts now have over $9.5 million in cap space. Their moves last night were done solely to free up cap space. Having already acquired Jason Garrison from the Vancouver Canucks, it’s believed the Bolts hope to add another defenseman via free agency. 

COLUMBUS DISPATCH: Contract talks between the Blue Jackets and RFA center Ryan Johansen have reached an impasse. The Jackets want to sign him to a two-year bridge deal, while the Johansen camp seek a long-term deal.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: That could make Johansen a target for an offer sheet, though the Blue Jackets have said they’ll match any offer. 

THE BUFFALO NEWS: New Sabres GM Tim Murray is wasting little time putting his stamp on the team. His most recent move was buying out the remainder of Christian Ehrhoff’s contract.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: The Sabres must also spend over $21 million to reach the cap minimum of $51 million for next season. While part of that will be eaten up in re-signing RFAs like Tyler Ennis and Marcus Foligno, he’ll still have to invest via free agency to become cap compliant by October.

NJ.COM: Steve Politi warns soon-to-be former Devils goalie Martin Brodeur about trying to extend his fading career with another club.


  1. id rather pay 1/3rd of 4.8 then 2/3rd of 4.5. Probably the actual money that they are required to pay out in case of buy out had something to do with it.

  2. that said, Im surprised that noone was willing to take purcell for a better deal. He has been solid, reliable, and at his price not a steal, but definitely worthwhile, especially when compared to the deals a lot of pluggers have been getting. Purcell has been fairly good to the lightening. I guess there is no rewarding loyalty in some organizations.

  3. all this does is prove what a joke the Cap really is, every time the league tries to plug a hole someone finds another way to get around it. if i was New Jersey i’d be pissed about this as they may have gotten their 1st round pick back (for trying to circumvent the Cap with the Kovalchuk signing) but they let the rest of the league pick before them. look for a lot more of this to happen today unless the league does something about it, which i doubt will happen. it may not be illegal but it certainly isn’t ethical.

    • It is unethical that a team traded a player to create cap space? Give your head a shake mate, all of these players involved are still playing for NHL teams, making full money.

  4. 21 million seems like a ridiculous amount to spend for a team like buffalo. I have no idea how they’re going to spend that and stick with their current strong rebuild model.

    • Its not hard for a NHL GM to spend 21 million dollars. Sign your restricted free agency. There goes around 7 million. Sign a UFA another 6-7 miillion. make a trade where you pick up salary, Time to phone, Chicago, Boston and company. Bring your NHL caliber player back from the minor leagues and let him play on your roster. 1-2 million back. Make some minor additoins at the 2-4 million range through free agency. Easy. Send out some offer sheets to sign a guy for some extravagant amount in the hopes a cap strapped team doesn’t match. Etc etc.

      • True, as long as you don’t overspend for players you’ll only end up buying out or trying to trade in three years.

        • and i guess that’s the thing, as spector pointed out. sure it’s easy to spend 21 million on nhl players but i’m not sure how buffalo can spend 21 million and help their rebuild.

          you want to let the kids play but kids are cheap. if you have nhl caliber players in the minors there is probably a good reason why they’re there, do you really want them mentoring your future players? taking on contracts from cap-strapped teams make sense but you have to make sure it’s not a deal that’s going to haunt you a few seasons down the road -and if that’s what they were going to do why bother to buy out ehrohoff?

          the offer sheet is a nice theory, and a real possibilty but it seems awful desperate and rarely works.