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PHT Morning Skate: Sabres thrilled for Bills; Hall’s impact on Arizona

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

• The Coyotes landing Taylor Hall in that big trade with the Devils presents a challenge for Arizona’s potential as a hockey market, while Hall could pump up his own value as a free agent. Mark Spector explores those two interweaving storylines, asking if Hall can “take that team as his lawfully wedded knife, and carve out some long awaited success for both parties?” (Sportsnet)

• A lengthy look at Hall’s legacy with the Devils, even though he wasn’t with New Jersey for a lengthy amount of time. (All About The Jersey)

• Former NHL head coach and player Ted Nolan, now an inspirational speaker for indigenous youth, reflects on the resiliency he had to show during his playing days. (NHL.com)

• Reddit user arahn17 presents an idea that takes #OskarStrong a step or five further: urging people to vote Oskar Lindblom into the 2020 NHL All-Star Games as Metropolitan Division captain. (reddit/Sporting News/NHL All-Star Ballot)

• The Sabres discuss how thrilled they are for the Buffalo Bills. The Sabres also discuss what they can learn from the Buffalo Bills. (Buffalo Hockey Beat)

• The Capitals are justified in using Ilya Samsonov more often going forward, even beyond keeping Braden Holtby fresh. (Nova Caps)

• Filip Zadina just played his 10th game of 2019-20, burning a year off of his entry-level contract. The Red Wings explain that they’re emphasizing his development. (The Detroit News)

• Strange, this story about Max Pacioretty‘s great year isn’t just “because Mark Stone” over and over again. OK, Patches deserves credit too … but it’s not a coincidence that Pacioretty’s play is taking off alongside an elite player like Stone. (Las Vegas Review-Journal)

• This piece discusses Anthony Duclair, nickname “Duke,” going “nuclear” yet there’s no mention of classic, tasteless first-person shooter “Duke Nuke’Em.” Is that for the best, or a missed opportunity? Either way, Duke took the high road with John Tortorella after Duclair’s hat trick against Columbus. (Sportsnet)

Eric Staal hit career point 1,000, making for a great time to ask if he’s underrated. (The Hockey News)

• You’d think that you can’t really mess up the Flames’ jerseys, but … yes, you can. (Hockey By Design)

• Which NHL teams provide the best and worst values for fans when it comes to a night of family fun? (The Athletic [sub required])

• As a supplement to this strong analysis of the Oilers’ potential impending plummet from PHT’s Adam Gretz, Travis Yost looks at their slipping goaltending, specifically. (TSN)

James O’Brien is a writer for Pro Hockey Talk on NBC Sports. Drop him a line at phtblog@nbcsports.com or follow him on Twitter @cyclelikesedins.

Goaltending ‘legend’ Tre White tests hockey knowledge of Bills’ teammates

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Buffalo Bills cornerback Tre’Davious White was bit by the hockey bug after attending a Sabres game last season. He became a big fan of goaltender Carter Hutton, who he mistakenly called “Sutton” at first, and Tweeted out support for the team.

White tried to test the level of his Bills teammates’ hockey knowledge during this week’s episode of “Chill with the Bills.” It features White quizzing his teammates, who weren’t quite up to par. Though, Ed Oliver nailing the butterfly technique after failing at the rest of the test was quite the twist.

[youtube https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ooMgUoWEv5Q%5D

A “Louisiana hockey legend”, White was a “hockey All-American” and the “best player in Louisiana history” after not allowing a goal during his high school career, and he was an “inspiration” for Hutton, as the Bills documented earlier this month. White’s love of hockey was first promoted last December when the Bills created a video showcasing his goaltending abilities with a spoof ad for “The Tre’Davious White Goalie Academy of Louisiana at Buffalo.”

It’s quite good.

[youtube https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=s33Te8CpEPU%5D

A Shreveport, La native, White’s hometown team, the Tier II junior Mudbugs, honored him last season during a February game.

Following back-to-back shutouts for Hutton this week and a 5-0-0 record to start the year, White surely has to be proud of his former goaltending protege.

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

Report: Bills sale to Sabres owner expected to be approved this week

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According to ProFootballTalk’s Mike Florio, the Buffalo Bills sale to Sabres’ owner Terry Pegula is expected to be rubber stamped this week.

Florio’s sources indicate that the purchase of the franchise is on the agenda for this week’s NFL ownership meetings in New York.

The Buffalo News reporter Tim Graham told Florio on his podcast PFT Live that it’s expected Terry Pegula’s wife, Kim Pegula, will be in charge of the football operations.

Pegula purchased the holding company, which owns the Sabres and the First Niagara Center in February 2011.

Canucks owner confirms interest in Bills

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Canucks chairman Francesco Aquilini confirmed The Buffalo News story Friday that he had interest in purchasing the Buffalo Bills.

However, Aqulini told the paper through a statement that he wouldn’t be pursing the NFL club further.

“I’m always exploring potential business opportunities, and I’m passionate about sports. So this is something that interested me. However, we are not planning to pursue the opportunity further.”

According to the report, Aquilini had signed a nondisclosure agreement for access to the Bills’ financial data.

Aquilini, 53, has been the majority owner of the Canucks since November 2006.

The Buffalo News story also reported that John Bitove, the man responsible for landing the Raptors in Toronto, is among those who signed a nondisclosure agreement.

The paper’s sources say as many as 60 nondisclosure agreements were distributed, but just 16 to 20 were signed and returned.

The NFL club is for sale after its founder and owner, Ralph Wilson, died in March.

Related: Report: Sabres’ owner Pegula makes bid for NFL’s Bills