Report: Isles’ MacDonald wants $5M per year


About a week ago, PHT asked how large of a raise New York Islanders defenseman Andrew MacDonald might receive with his next deal. That much is still very much in question, but New York Newsday has word on what he wants: $5 million per year.

Understatement: that’s a pretty big jump from $550K per season.

The Islanders are likely aware that the 27-year-old is far more important than a minimum wage guy, but Newsday also reports that there haven’t been any discussions lately between the Islanders and MacDonald’s agent Peter Cooney. The reason for the silence is simple: they’re reportedly uninterested in paying such a price.

As this post also explains, it’s easy to see why the rift exists.

Two differing viewpoints on value

From the Islanders perspective, they’re a budget team brimming with blueliners who could (potentially) fill the void if MacDonald were to leave.

MacDonald isn’t the kind of player who draws a lot of mainstream buzz, but he’s carrying the workload of a player who does.

He averages a team-leading 25:58 minutes per game, a full minute more than Travis Hamonic (who signed a seven-year, $27 million deal, but as a restricted free agent). Only four defensemen average more ice time per game than MacDonald this season: Ryan Suter, Brian Campbell, Erik Karlsson and Shea Weber. The “cheapest” player of that foursome is Karlsson at $6.5 million per season.

MacDonald already has 23 points in 52 games played, putting himself on pace for a healthy 36-point season to go with his heavy defensive responsibilities.

The takeaway is that MacDonald has a strong case for a raise, but he might just need to take that argument elsewhere.

Dubinsky won’t change, and he won’t go easy on Crosby

Leave a comment

Sometimes a suspension will shame a player, or at least inspire him to change the way he plays.

That apparently won’t happen regarding Brandon Dubinsky‘s one-game timeout session for cross-checking Sidney Crosby.

Dubinsky told Aaron Portzline of the Columbus Dispatch that he won’t alter his style, whether it’s against Crosby or someone else.

“Nope,” Dubinsky said. “You know, I’ve played the same way my whole career and I’m not going to change. The next time I have an opportunity to play (Crosby), I’m going to play him hard.”

In case you’re wondering, that next opportunity comes on Dec. 21 in Pittsburgh, assuming that both players are healthy and not suspended.

One can understand Dubinsky’s perspective, although such honesty would be that much more interesting if there’s another incident with Crosby. His initial reaction to the hit was interestingly candid, admitting that his “stick rode up” on his adversary.

Would that stance – which, from a harsher view, might seem flippant to Dubinsky’s critics – open the door for a bigger future bit of a discipline?

Maybe, maybe not … but at least his comments aren’t as inflammatory as what John Tortorella said (at least on the record).

Bad news for Boedker: Coyotes won’t face Sens again in 2015-16


Sorry Mikkel Boedker, you won’t get to face the Ottawa Senators again this season.

OK, it could happen if the speedster is traded from the Arizona Coyotes. He could also face the Senators in the unlikely instance that the two teams fight it out in the 2016 Stanley Cup Final.

Beyond those two possibilities, Saturday night was it, and Boedker must have been licking his chops much like an actual coyote.

For the second straight game, Boedker managed a hat trick against the Senators, helping Arizona beat Ottawa 4-3 last night. His third tally stood as the game-winner in a 4-3 victory.

You can watch all three goals in the video above.

It’s oddly fitting that Boedker has three goals this season … against teams not named the Ottawa Senators.

Hey, Tortorella called the Penguins whiners again

John Tortorella

Don’t forget, the Blue Jackets – Penguins rivalry isn’t just about the bitterness between Sidney Crosby and Brandon Dubinsky; John Tortorella can fuel the fire, too.

Torts must not have been happy about the one-game suspension that Dubinsky received for cross-checking Crosby, as he channeled his vintage self in essentially calling the Penguins a bunch of whiners.

You can see from this glorious Sportsnet video, Tortorella said: “Pittsburgh whines enough for the whole league.”

(He also said the Blue Jackets weren’t going to whine by … whining. Good stuff.)

As Puck Daddy notes, this isn’t the first time Torts claimed that the Penguins are whiners.

Both the Blue Jackets and Penguins lost their games on Saturday, but clearly some eyes and ears were still focused on their last confrontation.

In case you’re wondering, the two teams next face off in Pittsburgh on Dec. 21.


Scary moment: Carlo Colaiacovo hospitalized with ‘dented trachea’


Buffalo Sabres defenseman Carlo Colaiacovo has experienced plenty of bad injury luck in his winding career, but Saturday presented one of his worst scares.

As you can see from the video above, Colaiacovo received a scary cross-check from Viktor Arvidsson of the Nashville Predators, who received a major penalty and game misconduct.

Sabres head coach Dan Bylsma said that Colaiacovo was hospitalized with a “dented trachea” yet is OK, the Buffalo News’ John Vogl reports.

Frightening stuff from an eventual 4-1 Sabres win.

PHT will keep an eye out for additional updates regarding Colaiacovo’s health (and a possible suspension for Arvidsson).