Dave Nonis

PHT Morning Skate: Free agency day is upon us


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.

It’s the day that virtually signals the start of a new season while putting an end to the previous one. Today, fans, your team molds its future by signing (or avoiding signing) players to new potentially gigantic new deals beginning at noon ET.

Buckle up, it should be wild. As for what’s happening…

Looks like Columbus’ Derek MacKenzie, Jack Skille, and Blake Comeau are headed for UFA status at noon. (Columbus Dispatch)

Looks like Detroit’s shopping list on defense consists of Dan Boyle and Matt Niskanen. Christian Ehrhoff no longer in the hunt. (Mlive.com)

The St. Louis Blues are going to go hardest after Paul Stastny. (Post-Dispatch)

Caps first-round pick Jakub Vrana met Barry Trotz for the first time in… the men’s room? (CSNWashington.com)

It’s not only free agency day, but it’s also Canada Day and that hasn’t always been a great thing for the Toronto Maple Leafs. (Toronto Sun)

It’s pretty wild the Vancouver Canucks are seemingly hottest after goalie Ryan Miller this summer, isn’t it? (Toronto Sun)

Yeah, Willie Mitchell will be with a different team next season. (L.A. Times)

Sabres GM Tim Murray knows the rebuild is on his shoulders even though it started before he got there. Good thing he landed Sam Reinhart in the draft. (NHL.com)

Avs unveil new third jerseys

Avs Jerseys

The Avalanche will be throwing a bunch of different looks at us this season.

Having already released specialized “Mile High” jerseys for February’s Stadium Series game, the Avs unveiled new third sweaters on Friday — less than 24 hours after a bitter 5-4 home loss to Minnesota in their season opener.

(Guess Colorado wanted to send out some good vibes after blowing a 4-1 third-period lead.)

While undoubtedly exciting for the organization, the release of these new thirds isn’t taking anybody by surprise. Last month, several websites published leaked images of Colorado’s and Anaheim’s third jerseys, so the design has been in the public eye for several weeks.

The Avs will debut these new thirds on Oct. 24, in a Saturday night tilt against Columbus.

Related: Roy explains why he didn’t call time out

Report: Escrow set at 16 percent

Gary Bettman, Donald Fehr
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Hey, remember in June when the NHLPA voted to keep the five-percent growth factor in spite of increasing worries about escrow?

Well, here’s why that decision was a significant one, via TSN’s Frank Seravalli:

With early revenue projections in place, the NHL and NHLPA set the escrow withholding rate for players at 16 per cent for the first quarter of the season on Thursday.

That means every player will have 16 per cent of earnings deducted from their paycheque and put aside until after all of this season’s hockey-related revenue is counted to ensure a perfect 50-50 revenue split with owners.

Now, this doesn’t mean that the players will definitely lose 16 percent of their salaries. Typically, they receive refunds when all the accounting is done.

Still, 16 percent is a good-sized chunk to withhold. They won’t be thrilled about it.

Related: To understand escrow, consider Duncan Keith