Devils coach confirms Kovalchuk injury, decision on Torres suspension appeal could come soon, league reportedly rejects Kelly contract, update on the Coyotes sale, and more.
NJ.COM: Devils coach Pete DeBoer confirmed star forward Ilya Kovalchuk played through the post-season with a back injury, the full extent of which won’t be determined until tests are done on Thursday. Kovalchuk said he’s hopeful he won’t have to undergo surgery.
SPECTOR’S NOTE: So,as suspected, it was a back injury, rather than “dreaming about Siberia” which explained Kovalchuk’s performance in the Stanley Cup Final. Don’t expect Kovalchuk to get any apologies from those who insinuated he was dogging it in the Final.
CHICAGO SUN-TIMES: A decision could come soon, perhaps this week, from the league regarding the appeal by Phoenix Coyotes forward Raffi Torres over his 25-game suspension for his blindside hit on Blackhawks forward Marian Hossa during the Coyotes-Blackhawks series.
NBC SPORTS PRO HOCKEY TALK: Various sources report the NHL has rejected the Boston Bruins new four-year, $12 million contract with center Chris Kelly, as it may violate the salary tagging rule, which states payroll for next season cannot exceed the cap ceiling of the current season. The Bruins can try again on July 1st.
SPECTOR’S NOTE: If it is rejected because of the “tagging” rule, they simply re-file on July 1st, and the league will accept the deal, as for contract purposes, that date marks the start of 2012-13, meaning the new salary cap numbers will be in place.
ARIZONA REPUBLIC: To the surprise of no one, The Goldwater Institute is suing Glendale in hopes of invalidating city council’s vote to approve a $324 million lease agreement with potential Phoenix Coyotes buyer Glen Jamison.
CSNPHILLY.COM: Flyers assistant coach Craig Berube is no longer in the running for the Washington Capitals vacant head coach job.
TAMPA BAY TIMES: The Lightning have signed goaltender Riku Helenius to a two-year, two-way contract reportedly worth $550K next season as a two-way deal and $650K the following season as a one-way contract. The moves doesn’t end the club’s search for a number one goaltender.