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.
With the free agent period about to begin, what players are the Pittsburgh Penguins likely to target to bolster their top two lines? (Pittsburgh Post-Gazette)
The Philadelphia Flyers will hold Kimmo Timonen’s retirement ceremony on Oct. 14 when they host the Chicago Blackhawks. (Flyers.nhl.com)
Here’s a thorough look at the situation in Buffalo after GM Tim Murray’s flurry of moves. (Puck Daddy)
Expectations are high for Avalanche GM Joe Sakic going into the free agent frenzy. (Denver Post)
Calgary has Dougie Hamilton locked up, so now the focus will shift back to re-signing Mark Giordano. (Calgary Sun)
Could Matt Beleskey end up with Toronto? (Toronto Sun)
The Stephen Weiss experiment is over in Detroit. After completing just two seasons of his five-year, $24.5 million contract, the Detroit Red Wings have bought him out, per the Detroit Free Press.
At his height, Weiss enjoyed 61, 60, and 57-point campaigns over the span of a four-season stretch with the Florida Panthers from 2008-12. However, groin problems limited Weiss to just 26 contests in his first season with the Red Wings in 2013-14. To make matters worse, he only had two goals and four points when he did play.
Weiss averaged a mere 11:20 minutes per contest last season and finished with nine goals and 25 points in 52 games.
Despite his decline in the Red Wings’ depth charts, there was some debate about using Weiss to hedge their bets after Pavel Datsyuk underwent ankle surgery. However, Red Wings GM Ken Holland wants to give his younger players an opportunity.
“We want to see what (Dylan) Larkin can do,” Holland said. “Andreas Athanasiou had a good year, where is he at? We’re going with our own younger people who have put a resume together at the AHL level, and are on the verge of trying to establish themselves in the NHL. At some point in time this year, we’re hoping a lot of our young kids will be NHL players.”
Weiss’ buyout will cost Detroit roughly $10 million in cap space over the next six years. However, it will save the Red Wings about $3.8 million for each of the next two seasons compared to the full cost of his contract.
The Arizona Coyotes announced that they have traded Lauri Korpikoski to the Edmonton Oilers in exchange for Boyd Gordon.
Korpikoski set career-highs in 2010-11 with 19 goals and 40 points, but he hasn’t been able to replicate that level of offensive success in recent years. The 28-year-old forward was limited to six goals, 15 assists, and a minus-27 rating in 69 contests last season. At the same time, he averaged 1:41 minutes of shorthanded ice time per game and finished second among Coyotes forwards with 141 hits.
He comes with an annual cap hit of $2.5 million for the next two campaigns. Gordon will cost Arizona $3 million next season, although he’s eligible to become an unrestricted free agent after that.
Gordon previously spent two seasons with the Coyotes before signing with Edmonton in the summer of 2013. The 31-year-old center has never reached the 30-point mark in a single campaign, but he does excel on the draw. He won 55.9% of his faceoffs in 2014-15 and has a 55.3% career record. He also led all Oilers forwards last season with an average of 2:24 minutes of ice time in shorthanded situations.