The Anaheim Ducks are seen as a favorite to win the Stanley Cup, but they don’t look nearly as good off the ice.
“The only thing I’ll say is our losses are in the double-digit millions,” Ducks owner Henry Samueli told the Los Angeles Daily News.
Samueli is still committed to the Ducks though with the goal of being able to compete every year.
Ducks GM Bob Murray receives a spending limit each season and it’s frequently below the salary cap. Although it’s not known what Murray’s current budget is, the team is roughly $8 million below the ceiling, per General Fanager. Anaheim nevertheless has been a success story as the team claimed the Stanley Cup in 2007 and has more recently won its division three straight years while reaching the Western Conference Final in 2015.
“In a market like this, you have to put a winning team on the ice to get a fan base,” Samueli said. “We made it clear that from Day 1, that’s going to be our mission in life, to put competitive teams on the ice. It’s just a culture that’s been built in the organization.”
In 2014, Forbes listed Anaheim as the 18th most valuable franchise at $365 million. They also estimated that the Ducks’ operating income was -$3.7 million.
The Los Angeles Kings will be incurring a cap hit related to their announced settlement with Mike Richards, but some rival team executives have anonymously questioned if this all represents a loophole in the CBA, according to ESPN.
After all, while the financial terms of the settlement aren’t known, the Kings might have saved cap space overall by terminating his NHL Standard Players Contract and then resolving the grievance with the NHLPA rather than simply buying him out.
NHL deputy commissioner Bill Daly countered the claims of cap circumvention by stating that the CBA allows for a settlement of a grievance and outlines how it be factored into a team’s salary cap. Additionally, he noted that the league has been following the situation closely.
“The League actively monitored each stage of this dispute from the time of the initial contract termination to the point at which the case was settled, during which time we were in frequent contact with both the Club and the NHLPA,” Daly said. “If the settlement was simply a disguised way to get favorable cap treatment, we certainly would have considered it to be a circumvention and acted accordingly. But this wasn’t that. Far from it. There is absolutely zero concern that anything that transpired here could in any way be considered a ‘circumvention’ of the CBA. Anyone who believes to the contrary is clearly not privy to the facts.”
Related: Kings GM says Mike Richards went into ‘a destructive spiral’
Robin Lehner might not be back anytime soon.
Making his debut with the Buffalo Sabres, the 24-year-old goaltender couldn’t complete Thursday’s game against his former squad, the Ottawa Senators, due to what has now been revealed to be a right leg injury.
When he left the arena, he was wearing a walking boot on that nearly went up to his knee.
“It doesn’t look like it’s short term,” Sabres coach Dan Bylsma told the Buffalo News. “It’s more than day-to-day at this point, but we need to evaluate further.”
It’s a rocky start to what’s an important campaign for Lehner. He has been given an opportunity to demonstrate that he’s ready to be a starting goaltender after being acquired by the Sabres over the summer, but it looks like that will have to be postponed.
While he’s sidelined, Chad Johnson is likely to be leaned on heavily.
Brad Stuart wasn’t on the ice for the first game of his two-year, $7.2 million contract and it had nothing to do with his health.
Avalanche coach Patrick Roy felt Stuart simply wasn’t one of the six best defensemen in training camp and consequently he wasn’t in the lineup, per the Denver Post.
“Things could change for the next game,” Roy offered. “Like I said (Wednesday), we’re going to use those eight D all year long. (Last night was) just the first game of the season.”
Perhaps, but it’s still a terrible indicator, especially given that Stuart will turn 36 on Nov. 6. Stuart is a veteran of over 1,000 games, but now the question is if he has enough left in the tank to provide Colorado with much value.
The Avalanche also scratched defenseman Brandon Gormley, who was acquired from the Coyotes in exchange for Stefan Elliott. The hope was that both players would benefit from the change in scenery. Gormley was taken with the 13th overall pick of the 2010 NHL Entry Draft, but has only played in 32 career NHL games.
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.
In a survey of 29 beat writers, the Anaheim Ducks emerged as the clear favorite to win the Stanley Cup. If you’ll recall, they have that in common with the EA Sports simulation. (Boston Globe)
Alex Ovechkin would pick an Olympic hit against Jaromir Jagr as the biggest check of his life. (Russian Machine Never Breaks)
Here are the highlights from Minnesota’s 5-4 victory over Colorado:
The Montreal Canadiens seem committed to using Alex Galchenyuk as a center throughout the 2015-16 campaign. (The Canadian Press)
The NHL recently enlisted its players to read off some not so mean tweets. (USA Today)
Bills coach Rex Ryan talked about the Sabres in Thursday’s press conference. (NHL.com)
Frederik Andersen may have the Anaheim Ducks’ starting job for now, but with John Gibson still a big part of their plans, Andersen has to keep proving himself. (Orange County Register)