PHT Morning Skate: Bergevin’s road to Cup Final; 2020 HOF class to be celebrated

Welcome to the PHT Morning Skate, a collection of links from the NHL and around the hockey world. Have a link you want to submit for the PHT Morning Skate? Email us at phtblog@nbcsports.

• It was a long and bumpy road for Marc Bergevin in helping get the Canadiens back to the Stanley Cup Final. [Daily Faceoff]

• “This could be the last great run of the core players assembled under Steve Yzerman and strengthened by Julien BriseBois. No matter what happens, it’s unlikely they will find a way to keep everyone under the cap for next season.” [Raw Charge]

• Montreal couldn’t take care of the puck in Game 1, and it cost them. [PHT]

• The Hockey Hall of Fame will holds its induction ceremony for the Class of 2020 on Nov. 15 at Meridian Hall in Toronto. Marian Hossa, Jarome Iginla, Kevin Lowe, Doug Wilson and Kim St-Pierre were elected in the Players category and Ken Holland in the Builders category. The 2020 induction ceremony was delayed due to the coronavirus. []

• NHL commissioner Gary Bettman on the sexual assault allegations against former Blackhawks assistant coach Brad Aldrich and the independent review: “But my first reaction is, ‘Tell me the facts.’ Once we know what the facts are we’re in a better position to evaluate what may or may not need to be done.” [ESPN]

• “A former Chicago Blackhawks player who alleges a team video coach sexually assaulted him and a teammate in 2010 says he has told his family about the abuse and is still struggling 11 years later with its long-term effects.” [TSN]

[NHL Stanley Cup Playoffs 2021 schedule, TV info]

• It’s NWHL draft day. Here’s a look at what could do down tonight. [PHT]

• All six NWHL franchises are now independently owned after the Buffalo Beauts and Minnesota Whitecaps were purchased by two members of the league’s Board of Governors. [The Ice Garden]

• The Toronto Six has hired Krystiana Clarke as its new general manager. [TSN]

• The Kraken and Panthers have entered into an agreement to put their AHL prospects with the Charlotte Checkers for the 2021-22 season. Seattle will have its own AHL franchise in Palm Springs, California when construction on the team’s facility is  completed in time for the 2022-23 season. [Checkers]

• It will be the Wild vs. Blues in the 2022 Winter Classic at Target Field in Minnesota; Predators vs. Lightning at Nissan Stadium in Tennessee in the 2022 Stadium Series; and Las Vegas will host the 2022 NHL All-Star Game. [PHT]

• What kind of extensions are Elias Pettersson and Quinn Hughes looking at? For Pettersson, it looks like one with a max of five years. Hughes is reportedly seeking a longer-term deal. [Daily Faceoff]


Sean Leahy is a writer for Pro Hockey Talk on NBC Sports. Drop him a line at or follow him on Twitter @Sean_Leahy

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    Canucks’ Ilya Mikheyev to have season-ending knee surgery

    Ilya Mikheyev
    Bob Frid/USA TODAY Sports

    VANCOUVER, British Columbia — Vancouver Canucks right wing Ilya Mikheyev is set to have season-ending surgery on his left knee.

    Canucks general manager Patrik Allvin said Friday night the 28-year-old Russian forward tore the anterior cruciate ligament in his left knee in the team’s first preseason game Sept. 25. Mikheyev will undergo surgery next week and is expected to be ready for training camp in the fall.

    Mikheyev was originally listed as week-to-week with the injury and played 45 regular-season games, finishing with 13 goals and 15 assists. He scored in his final appearance Friday night, a 5-2 home victory over Columbus.

    Mikheyev signed a four-year, $19 million contract as a free agent last summer.

    Maple Leafs’ Matthews out at least 3 weeks with knee injury

    Nick Turchiaro/USA TODAY Sports

    Toronto Maple Leafs center Auston Matthews will miss at least three weeks with a sprained knee.

    The team announced the reigning MVP’s anticipated absence Friday, two days after Matthews was injured in Toronto’s victory against the New York Rangers.

    Matthews is expected to miss at least six games and could be out for a few more. The timing of the injury coinciding with the NHL All-Star break and the Maple Leafs bye week prevents this from costing Matthews more time out of the lineup.

    After being voted an All-Star by fans, Matthews is now out of the event scheduled for Feb. 3-4 in Sunrise, Florida. The league announced Aleskander Barkov from the host Florida Panthers will take Matthews’ place on the Atlantic Division All-Star roster.

    Matthews, who won the Hart Trophy last season after leading the NHL with 60 goals, has 53 points in 47 games this season.

    Caufield opted for surgery with Habs out of playoff race

    caufield surgery
    David Kirouac/USA TODAY Sports

    MONTREAL — Montreal Canadiens winger Cole Caufield said Friday he wouldn’t be having season-ending surgery on his right shoulder if the team were in playoff contention.

    But with the Canadiens near the bottom of the Eastern Conference standings, the 22-year-old Caufield said he decided to have the surgery to protect his long-term health. The procedure is scheduled to be performed by Dr. Peter Millett on Wednesday.

    “I didn’t want to stop playing,” Caufield said. “I had a couple tests done to look at it more clearly but, in the end, like it could’ve been one more fall and it could have been even worse.”

    Caufield, who leads the Canadiens with 26 goals in 46 games, had three different medical opinions on his shoulder before concluding that his season was over.

    “I think they’ve seen a lot more than I have and they know the differences and what they like or don’t like about it,” he said about the medical opinions. “Long term, I think this is what’s best but for sure it was tough to sit out that game against Toronto on Saturday night.”

    Caufield initially felt the injury in an awkward fall during Montreal’s 4-2 loss at Dallas on Dec. 23. He said his right shoulder popped, and he replaced it himself.

    Caufield felt it again in the Habs’ 4-3 loss at Nashville on Jan. 12. The club announced on Jan. 21 that Caufield would miss the rest of the season.

    Caufield is nearing the end of his three-year, entry-level contract and will be a restricted free agent this summer.

    All-Star Matty Beniers to miss next 2 games for Kraken

    matty beniers
    Joe Nicholson/USA TODAY Sports

    SEATTLE — Seattle Kraken rookie All-Star Matty Beniers will miss the team’s final two games before the All-Star break after taking a big hit from Vancouver’s Tyler Myers earlier this week.

    Seattle coach Dave Hakstol said after morning skate Friday that Beniers would not play Friday night against Calgary or Saturday against Columbus. Hakstol did not speculate on Beniers’ availability for next weekend’s All-Star Game in Florida.

    The team has not specified what kind of injury Beniers sustained from the hit. He was barreled over by Myers away from the play early in the second period in Wednesday’s 6-1 victory over Vancouver. Myers was penalized for interference on the play. Beniers returned briefly for one shift later in the period but did not play in the third period.

    Beniers is Seattle’s lone All-Star selection this season. He leads all rookies in goals (17) and points (36), and is fifth in total ice time for rookies.

    Seattle also placed defenseman Justin Schultz on injured reserve and recalled forward Max McCormick from Coachella Valley of the AHL. Hakstol said Schultz is improving but there’s no timeline on his return.