The PHT Nightcap: Wednesday, September 29th

Even in the depressingly hockey-free summer, we expect to be a productive bunch here at Pro Hockey Talk. Sometimes it might be difficult to follow our pace. We understand that. For that reason, whenever we can, we’ll put all of the day’s stories in one convenient post called the PHT Nightcap. Enjoy, hockey fans.

Brian Gionta named Montreal’s captain – Wearing the Habs ‘C’ is a real tall order (… get it? Because he’s short?).

Today’s season previews: Oilers, Wild, Ducks, Stars,Canucks – Seriously, these could get you through a lot of boring meetings at work/dinner with your loved ones/three-hour lectures at college.

Capitals loan Michael Nylander to Panthers’ farm club – Nylander is the hockey equivalent to an electric screwdriver.

Slava Kozlov goes to the KHL – One of the least surprising defections, though Kozlov conceivably could have helped a contender at a cheap price.

Roenick blasts the Thrashers for playing Dustin Byfuglien at defense – Hey, say what you want, but at least JR speaks his mind.

Eric Tangradi could be a wild card for Penguins – Comparing himself to Tomas Holmstrom might be a bit much, but Tangradi might be a difference maker in Pittsburgh.

Bryce Salvador undergoes testing for ‘ear situation’ – We’ll keep an eye on Salvador’s status as it’s still up in the air.

Check out the new Hartford Whalers-inspired Connecticut Whale logo

Tonight’s preseason game could decide Brendan Morrison’s fate in Vancouver – More on that in tonight’s recap.

Alex Kovalev and Francois Beauchemin get in a ‘fight’ – The clip is as hilarious as you would expect it to be.

Quick preseason recaps for tonight’s games.

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    Stars to scratch Nichushkin after rough outing versus Avs?

    Craig Anderson
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    Looks as though slumping Dallas winger Valeri Nichushkin could be a healthy scratch tonight when the Stars host the Oilers at American Airlines.

    Per the Morning-News, Nichushkin — who barely played in the second and third periods of Saturday’s 6-3 loss to Colorado — is likely to be replaced by Colton Sceviour in the lineup.

    Stars head coach Lindy Ruff was fuming after the Avs defeat, calling it “embarrassing, worse than disappointing.” It didn’t take a genius to realize one of the players in his doghouse was Nichushkin, who had just 2:02 of ice time in the second period and 3:24 in the third.

    Yesterday, Ruff dropped Nichushkin to the fourth line in practice.

    “I’ve been trying to help him by shifting him around,” the head coach explained. “He had some struggles early in camp on right wing, so I put him on left, and he doesn’t seem real comfortable at left right now.

    “His game, everything has got to get a little bit quicker.”

    The 10th overall pick in 2013, Nichushkin has struggled to build on the form shown in his rookie campaign, when he scored 14 goals and 34 points in 79 contests.

    He missed nearly all of last season with a linger hip ailment and has been a virtual non-factor through the first two games this year.

    Report: Teams ‘screaming bloody murder’ about Richards settlement

    Mike Richards

    When the Los Angeles Kings announced they’d settled with Mike Richards, it didn’t take long for the accusations of salary-cap circumvention to materialize.

    And though NHL deputy commissioner Bill Daly was adamant that the settlement was “far from” circumvention, apparently not everyone agrees with the league in that regard.

    “Privately, other teams are screaming bloody murder and are threatening to make an issue about it at December’s Board of Governors’ meeting,” Sportsnet’s Elliotte Friedman reports.

    Friedman goes into more detail in his story, so click the link to read more.

    But remember how we wrote that the issue in this case was precedent, and that the “NHL and NHLPA can’t allow teams to escape onerous contracts through a back door”?

    Well, one agent posed a good question to Friedman: “What’s to stop other teams from trying this?”