Playing back-to-back games is tough enough. Going without the league’s leading scorer and one of its most insufferable pests will be even tougher.
That’s the situation the Pittsburgh Penguins find themselves in, though, as word surfaced that Sidney Crosby and Matt Cooke will miss tonight’s game against the hated Montreal Canadiens.
Rob Rossi of the Pittsburgh Tribune-Review reports that Crosby is suffering from an “upper body injury” while Cooke is dealing with personal issues (let’s assume Cooke’s personal issues don’t involve finding his son another matching tailored suit). I must admit that my immediate thought was: “maybe that David Steckel hit was as bad as it looked for Crosby” but the Penguins claim that Crosby is dealing with something from yesterday’s game against the Lightning instead.
It sounds like Crosby’s injury isn’t very serious, but we’ll have to wait and see.
Bylsma did not identify the sequence upon which Crosby was injured against Tampa Bay.
“At this point we’re making sure he’s healthy and ready and able to play when he does get back out there,” Bylsma said.
“We knew at one point in the game (Wednesday), after the game and traveling, waking up this morning… but we were still going to see how he was reacting to his injury. When he woke up this morning we decided he wasn’t going to play tonight.”
This will mark only the second game Crosby has missed over the past two seasons. His previous injuries have been of the lower-body variety (groin, hip and ankle).
Those previous injuries made Crosby miss a considerable amount of time, yet the Penguins were able to persevere thanks to strong play from the likes of Evgeni Malkin. Pittsburgh hopes they will only need to fight through a game or two without their captain. We’ll keep you updated about his status this week.
Since being selected by the Coyotes at 13th overall in the 2010 NHL Draft, Brandon Gormley has had a difficult time breaking into the league on a full-time basis.
On Thursday, the 24-year-old Gormley joined his third NHL team, signing with the New Jersey Devils on a one-year, two-way deal worth $650,000 at the NHL level, the club announced.
Despite his draft status, Gormley has yet to play a full season in the big league, although this deal could give him an opportunity to end that. For the Devils, the deal adds more depth to their blue line and for a friendly price.
Last season, Gormley split time between the Colorado Avalanche and its farm team, the San Antonio Rampage. Despite some high expectations about where he could fit on the Avs’ blue line, he was eventually put on waivers in January.
He ended the season with one assist in 26 games with the Avalanche, and hit the open market after Colorado didn’t give him a qualifying offer.
After ongoing contract talks between the Minnesota Wild and restricted free agent defenseman Matt Dumba, the two sides have come to a deal.
The Wild announced Thursday that they had signed Dumba to a two-year deal, worth a total value of $5.1 million.
A breakdown of the new deal:
— In 2016-17: $2.35 million.
— In 2017-18: $2.75 million.
Selected seventh overall by the Wild in 2012, Dumba had his most productive campaign this past season, with 10 goals and 26 points in 81 games.
Known for his offensive skills — he had 20 goals and 57 points with Red Deer in the WHL in his draft year — Dumba also brings a coveted right-shot to the Wild blue line, which features four players with contracts of four or more years of term remaining.
As per General Fanager, the Wild still have $2.168 million in projected cap space, but they have secured all their remaining restricted free agents.
The New York Rangers announced that they’ve re-signed Marek Hrivik to a new contract. The term and financial details of the deal were not released.
Hrivik signed with the Rangers as an undrafted free agent in May 2012. The 24-year-old made his NHL debut in 2015-16 and ended up playing five games for the Rangers. He had one assist and a plus-3 rating during his time in the NHL.
The young forward was an important part of New York’s AHL affiliate in Hartford. Hrivik finished his AHL campaign with 12 goals and 29 assists. He tied for the team lead in assists and finished third in points.
If you go by Hrivik’s tweet, it appears as though he signed a one-year contract:
Now that Hrivik is re-signed, the Rangers have no more free agents of any kind, per General Fanager.
Another day, another scheduled arbitration hearing avoided.
According to multiple reports, defenseman Michael Stone and the Arizona Coyotes have settled on a one-year, $4 million deal, well ahead of their scheduled arbitration hearing set for Aug. 4.
Stone, 26, was a restricted free agent coming off a three-year contract with an AAV of $1.15 million.
Last season in Arizona, he hit new career highs in points with 36 and assists with 30. He also logged some heavy minutes, playing more than 22 minutes per game, which was second behind only Oliver Ekman-Larsson. That includes being used on both the power play and penalty kill.
Just more work done for the Coyotes on Thursday.
Earlier in the day, they announced they had signed defenseman Connor Murphy to a six-year contract extension, worth a total of $23.1 million.
Related: Coyotes’ defensive makeover continues with Luke Schenn signing