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Simmer’s Morning Skate: Canucks Contract Talks Picking Up, NHL Player Suspensions, Kane in Trouble Again?

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Am told a decent chit-chat went on yesterday (Tuesday) between Vancouver Canucks management and player agent Pat Brisson regarding contracts for Elias Pettersson and Quinn Hughes. No deets on progress as of yet but the day is very young. Stand by caller. In the meantime, it’s been awhile for one of these, so …

Let’s Skate! …

Re-emphasizing three clarifications about Travis Hamonic’s situation should he opt to sit-out this next season, a decision he must make by Friday if that’s the route he chooses. First, if he decides to opt out, it’s irreversible, he’s ineligible, and he ceases-to-be for all intensive purposes as it relates to the season. Second, his $3-million cap hit does indeed free up; the Canucks can spend it elsewhere (see Brisson). And three, important for the team’s flexibility down the road, the player and his contract can be traded while he’s sitting out. There is no deadline to unload Hamonic should they decide to do so, and they probably would if they could, and that includes after the trade deadline because he’s an ineligible player. Since he couldn’t play for his new team this season, the scenario would likely unfold well after the New Year as teams were preparing ahead for next season, unless of course the Canucks can somehow find a way to unload him in the next three days.

The Toronto Maple Leafs have found the answer! Finally. There’s a good chance that this is sarcasm. Anyhoo, apparently the best way to toughen up the line-up is to toughen up their brains. Here it is, from our pal Mark Masters at TSN.ca. Speaking of pals (now) at TSN, that crew announced yesterday that reporter Chris Johnston had jumped ship and was leaving Sportsnet and Hockey Night in Canada for a gig at the rival. All the best to CJ in his new digs.

Since they’re likely sad because of the departure of their cohort, let’s give fair ups to Sportsnet in this space. And it’s actually a pretty remarkable story. Just a week or so since the NHL cleared San Jose Sharks forward Evander Kane of gambling-on-NHL allegations made by his estranged ex-wife, it appears he’s in trouble yet again. This time it’s Elliotte Friedman telling us about Kane’s potential Covid protocol violations presently being investigated.

Two suspensions already this preseason, the latest to Dylan McIlrath of the Washington Capitals for a head shot to Boston Bruins forward Steven Forgarty. Big ‘mac’ will sit out two games in the preseason and two games in the regular season, when he’ll probably be in the American Hockey League or an NHL press box anyway. Meanwhile, Ottawa Senator Ridley Greig earned a two-game squat, one preseason game and one regular season, for cross checking Winnipeg Jet Pierre-Luc Dubois in the face. Not cool Ridley. The NHL’s Department of Player Safety has the video evidence.

Anyone here into fantasy hockey? Then you’ll love this list. NHL.com has put out the names of around 200 forwards with their projected scoring totals. The article also includes links to people giving recommendations and prognostications. Enjoy, and good luck this season with your team.

The Vancouver Canucks practice this morning (Wednesday) at 11 am at Rogers Arena and again Thursday morning at 11:15. The team’s next preseason game is Friday night in Calgary.

Enjoy the Hockey Action!!

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