Jason Brough

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Isles cut Dal Colle and Ho-Sang; Barzal and Beauvillier remain

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The New York Islanders announced a pile of moves today.

From the team’s website:

Kyle Burroughs, Michael Dal Colle, Matthew Finn, Christopher Gibson, Jesse Graham, Josh Ho-Sang, Ross Johnston, Devon Toews and Stephon Williams were loaned/assigned to Bridgeport.

Steve Bernier, Colin Markison and Tanner Fritz were released from their PTOs.

Scott Mayfield was placed on waivers.

Dal Colle, the fifth overall pick in 2014, and Ho-Sang, who went 28th that same year, are the most recognizable names. Both players were in junior last year and are only 20 years old, so it’s no huge disappointment that they’re headed for the AHL.

The Isles still have a couple of youngsters on the roster:

Mathew Barzal, 19, went 16th overall in 2015. A center, he’s been pegged to make the team since Frans Nielsen left in free agency. (Which isn’t to say he can replace Nielsen, only that a roster spot opened up.)

Anthony Beauvillier, also 19, was the 28th pick in 2015. He’s been a pleasant surprise at camp, and so far he’s survived the cuts.

“To me, he’s one of the guys that’s emerged,” coach Jack Capuano said of Beauvillier, per Newsday. “Put him at center, put him at left wing, right wing, in all situations. He does things the right way. Some of these young guys aren’t going to come in and play top-six minutes, so what kind of role are you going to play on our team? That’s what we’re looking for right now.”

Related: Isles sign Strome for two more years — can he bounce back?

McDavid becomes youngest captain in NHL history

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At just 19 years old (plus 266 days), Connor McDavid was today named the captain of the Edmonton Oilers.

McDavid becomes the 15th captain in franchise history, and the youngest captain in NHL history (narrowly edging out Colorado’s Gabriel Landeskog, who was 19 plus 286 days).

Andrew Ference was the last Oiler to wear the ‘C’, but he relinquished the role a year ago.

Other former Oilers captains include Wayne Gretzky, Mark Messier, Kevin Lowe, Craig MacTavish and Doug Weight.

Edmonton’s alternate captains will be Milan Lucic, Jordan Eberle, and Ryan Nugent-Hopkins.

Related: Talbot thinks McDavid is ready to be Oilers’ captain

 

With two-year contract extension, Coyotes expect Domingue to ‘take that next step’

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When all was said and done, the Arizona Coyotes didn’t get very good goaltending last season. They finished with a team save percentage of just .904, one of the lowest rates in the league.

That being said, they did get one very good stretch in December and January from Louis Domingue, and for that he was given a two-year, $2.1 million contract extension.

Now Domingue, 24, is out to prove he’s for real.

“Being a 24-year-old goalie in this league is an honor,” Domingue told the Arizona Republic. “Not every goalie gets up here this fast. I’m taking it one day at a time, and it happened to me. Putting in the work and not looking too far ahead, it worked out. I’m here now, so I’m going to keep pushing the same way.”

The Coyotes still have Mike Smith under contract for three more years. As former GM Don Maloney put it, they’re “married” to him, at a cap hit of $5.7 million to boot.

Smith, 34, went 15-13-2 with a .916 save percentage last season, and he actually played very well after returning in mid-March from abdominal surgery.

So it should be an interesting battle for playing time between the young netminder and the veteran.

“He’s been solid,” GM John Chayka said of Domingue. “It looked like he had a good summer and came in in good shape. … I expect him to take that next step. Louis’ got the talent to do it. It’s now doing it.”

Hurricane Matthew forces cancellation of Panthers-Lightning preseason game

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Hurricane Matthew, which is expected to hit Florida Thursday or Friday, has forced the cancellation of tomorrow’s preseason game between the Tampa Bay Lightning and Florida Panthers in Sunrise.

The cancellation, which was expected, was confirmed today by TSN’s Bob McKenzie.

From the Miami Herald:

The Panthers could leave for their previously scheduled weekend trip to the U.S. Military Academy in West Point, New York, a little earlier than scheduled.

Florida plays the New Jersey Devils at West Point in its preseason finale on Saturday night.

As for the storm, here’s the latest from NBC News:

Thousands of Americans were headed for higher ground Wednesday as deadly Hurricane Matthew crawled across the Caribbean and toward the U.S. Eastern Seaboard.

The storm is likely to bring high winds, heavy rain and storm surges to Florida on Thursday, before crawling its way up the coast toward Georgia and the Carolinas by Friday or Saturday. 

Minnesota sends Tuch to AHL, while Eriksson Ek remains

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It was always going to be tough for Alex Tuch to make the Minnesota Wild out of training camp. The team already had four NHL veterans at right wing — Charlie Coyle, Jason Zucker, Jason Pominville, and Chris Stewart — while Tuch is only 20 years old and has yet to play a single regular-season game as a professional.

So today’s news that Tuch, the former Boston College star, has been assigned to AHL Iowa should come as no real surprise. The Wild also sent Jordan Schroeder, Kurtis Gabriel and Hunter Warner down to the farm.

Related: Alex Tuch is looking to make the leap

While Tuch was sent down, another of the Wild’s top prospects, forward Joel Eriksson Ek, remained. The 19-year-old Swede was a first-round draft pick in 2015, and it sounds like he has a good chance to start the season in the NHL.

Eriksson Ek, a center, outlasted 23-year-old center Tyler Graovac, who today was placed on waivers. (Presumably Graovac will be assigned to the AHL should he clear.)

Suffice to say, Eriksson Ek is a very important prospect for a team whose top two centers, Eric Staal and Mikko Koivu, are on the tail ends of their careers.

According to the Star Tribune, if Eriksson Ek doesn’t stick with the Wild, he could return to Sweden for another season with Färjestad.