Let’s take a look at some recent news and notes from around the National Hockey League.
Seattle Expansion Unanimously Approved
The NHL Board of Governors unanimously voted to approve adding Seattle as an expansion team that will begin play during the 2021-22 season. Seattle will become the NHL’s 32nd franchise, and they will become a member of the Pacific Division in the Western Conference. To make room for Seattle, the Arizona Coyotes will be shifted to the Central Division. The Seattle group will be required to pay an entrance fee of $650 million, which is significantly more than the $500 million that the Golden Knights were required to pay. The Seattle ownership group also announced that the price to renovate KeyArena in Seattle has now been set at $800 million. The NHL will use the same expansion-draft rules that helped propel the Vegas Golden Knights to the Stanley Cup Finals a season ago. There is not yet a team name for the Seattle franchise, and no details were given about how the name would be chosen.
Senators-Penguins Complete Trade
The Ottawa Senators and Pittsburgh Penguins completed a four-player trade that mostly included minor league players. Ottawa will receive defenseman Stefan Elliott and forward Tobias Lindberg in exchange for defenseman Macoy Erkamps and forward Ben Sexton. Elliott is viewed as the key piece in this deal, but he hasn’t played in the NHL since 2016 with the Nashville Predators. He has played in 84 NHL games, recording eight goals and 16 assists in those game.
Nylander To Make Season Debut
The Toronto Maple Leafs will welcome back the return of William Nylander to the ice on Thursday night when they take on the Detroit Red Wings. Nylander missed the first 27 games of the season as he was recovering from injury, and was a healthy scratch for the Maple Leafs victory on Tuesday night. The team announced that they have signed Nylander to a six-year contract extension that will pay him $6.9 million annually. Nylander was a first-round draft pick of the Maple Leafs in the 2014 NHL Draft and has played in 185 games with the team. He has totaled 48 goals and 87 assists during his NHL career. Toronto has won five straight games, and have accumulated the second most points in the league this season with 40.
Bertuzzi Suspended By NHL
The NHL has suspended Detroit Red Wings forward Tyler Bertuzzi for two games without pay for a hit that took place over the weekend. Bertuzzi was given the suspension on Monday after his hit on Colorado Avalanche forward Matt Calvert. There was no penalty called on the play during the game, but the NHL sanctioned Bertuzzi for roughing and unsportsmanlike conduct. Bertuzzi did not appeal and missed the Red Wings games against the Lightning on Tuesday and the Maple Leafs on Thursday.
Red Wings Lose Two Players To Injury
In other Detroit Red Wings news, the team will be without two of their top players for an extended period of time. Defenseman Danny DeKeyser is out for 4-6 weeks after he suffered a left-hand injury on Tuesday night. DeKeyser was hit in the left hand by a slapshot from Lightning forward Steven Stamkos and immediately left the ice. He missed eight games earlier this season with a hand injury, but the team did not confirm that it was the same hand. DeKeyser has been a member of the Detroit Red Wings since signing with them as an undrafted free agent in 2013. Forward Anthony Mantha also suffered a hand injury recently and is expected to miss the same amount of time as DeKeyser. The Red Wings announced that surgery is required to repair the injury. Mantha was drafted by the Red Wings in the 2013 NHL Draft and has been one of their most consistent scorers in recent seasons. He has 14 points through 27 games this season.
Ryan Reaves Avoids Suspension
Vegas Golden Knights forward Ryan Reaves was able to avoid suspension after a controversial hit on Tuesday. Reaves delivered a hit that knocked Washington Capitals enforcer Tom Wilson out of the game. The two exchanged blows and words for much of the night before a second quarter hit knocked Wilson out for the rest of the night. Reaves was given a game misconduct and immediately ejected from the game, but the NHL did not choose to suspend him or give him any further punishment.