Toronto Maple Leafs v Washington Capitals

PHT Morning Skate: In which we worry about where the Leafs are headed


PHT’s Morning Skate takes a look around the world of hockey to see what’s happening and what we’ll be talking about around the NHL world and beyond.

Wondering if the Leafs’ latest losing ways are something to worry about? Yeah, so are we and so is James Mirtle. (Globe And Mail)

Brad Richards has another reunion with an old team coming up against the Stars and he’s eager to get it on. (ESPN New York)

Jaroslav Spacek said he expected Montreal to trade him. I wonder if Jacques Martin expects to be fired then? (Montreal Gazette)

Dater reports that Paul Stastny will be back in action tonight. They hope the Paul Stastny of old shows up instead of the guy who’s been around lately. (All Things Avs)

Islanders draft pick and current Boston University stand out Corey Trivino is in a lot of trouble after being arrested and kicked off the team. (The Prospect Park)

Blues chairman Dave Checketts might have new duties to fulfill with the team when Matthew Hulsizer buys the team. (Post-Dispatch)

Daniel Alfredsson is still going strong in Ottawa at nearly 40 years-old. (Ottawa Sun)

The Predators’ power play of late is winning friends in Nashville and influencing victory. (Tennessean)

Ryan Kesler going back to the state of Ohio is always a fun thing for him after his days playing hockey at Ohio State. (Canucks)

Did you miss the best plays of the week? The guys on NHL Overtime didn’t so here they are for you to check out.

This video is no longer available. Click here to watch more NBC Sports videos!

Report: Kings, Richards nearing settlement

Mike Richards
1 Comment

The Los Angeles Kings and Mike Richards may be nearing a settlement in their dispute over Richards’ terminated contract, TSN’s Bob McKenzie is reporting.

You can read the report for all the details, but we’re sure curious about this part:

If a settlement is reached, there’s no word yet on what salary cap penalties the Kings would still face. There’s bound to be something, but not likely as onerous as the full value of Richards’ contract, which carries with it a cap hit of $5.75 million. If there’s a settlement, Richards would undoubtedly become a free agent though there’s no telling at this point what monies he would be entitled to from the Kings in a settlement.

The issue here is precedent, and what this case could set. The NHL and NHLPA can’t allow teams to escape onerous contracts through a back door, and many are adamant that that’s what the Kings were attempting to do in Richards’ case.

Bettman to players: Don’t screw up ‘once-in-a-lifetime opportunity’ with drugs

Gary Bettman
Leave a comment

The NHL wants to take an educational approach — not a punitive one — to deter its players from using illicit drugs like cocaine.

“My interest is not to go around punishing people,” Bettman told Sportsnet today.

“My interest is getting players to understand the consequences of doing something that could jeopardize this great, once-in-a-lifetime opportunity that they’ve been given, to play in the NHL.”

While some players have expressed surprise at hearing that cocaine use is growing, the anecdotal evidence of substance abuse has been very much in the news, from Jarret Stoll‘s arrest to Mike Richards’ arrest to, more recently, Zack Kassian‘s placement in the NHL/NHLPA’s treatment program.

“We don’t have the unilateral right to do things here. We need the consent of the Players’ Association,” Bettman said. “It’s not about punishment. It’s about making sure we get it to stop.”

Related: Cocaine in the NHL: A concern, but not a crisis?