Below is a look around the NHL at some of the biggest news stories surrounding the league.
No World Cup of Hockey in 2020
An announcement was made on Wednesday by the NHL and NHLPA that confirmed that there would not be a World Cup of Hockey in 2020. The two sides expressed that while the fall of 2020 is no longer a realistic target, but they will work towards finding a new date. The NHL has been trying to work with international hockey organizations to set up an international hockey calendar that makes sense for all parties. The World Cup of Hockey was held in Toronto, Canada in 2016 and it was expected to be played four years later. Team Europe was upended by Team Canada for the World Cup of Hockey title in 2016.
NHL Suspends Paul Byron
The NHL Department of Player Safety announced on Wednesday that Paul Byron has been suspended for three games. Byron, a forward for the Montreal Canadiens, was given the suspension for his actions during a game against the Florida Panthers on January 15. Byron was given a charging penalty in the second period for a hit against MacKenzie Weegar. The suspension will cost the forward $18,817.20 of his salary, with the money being donated to the Players’ Emergency Assistance Fund.
Gorges Retires From NFL
Buffalo Sabres defenseman Josh Gorges officially announced his retirement from the NHL on Monday. Gorges played 13 seasons in the NHL but has not played in a game since April of 2018. He signed with the San Jose Sharks as an undrafted free agent on September 20, 2002, but didn’t make his NHL debut until 2005. Gorges is most known for his time with the Montreal Canadiens after being acquired in a trade during the 2007 season. He played in 57 Stanley Cup Playoff games with the Capitals and was a part of two Eastern Conference Finals teams. Gorges played with the Buffalo Sabres during the final four years of his career. He finished with career totals of 124 points and played in a total of 784 games.
Sharks Extend Sorensen
San Jose Sharks forward Marcus Sorensen has re-signed a two-year contract extension. The new deal will keep Sorensen in San Jose through the 2020-21 season. The Sharks originally signed Sorensen in May 2016 after the forward had a successful hockey career in Sweden. Sorensen played sparingly during his first two seasons in the NHL, playing in just 41 games and tallying six goals and five assists. This season, Sorensen has played in a career-high 47 games and has tallied eight goals and seven assists. Financial details of the extension are not known at this time.
Nathan Beaulieu Open to Trade
Buffalo Sabres defenseman Nathan Beaulieu has seen his playing time decrease and is now looking for a new team. Beaulieu’s agent Kent Hughes spoke to the media and expressed that his client would rather be traded rather than seeing a lack of playing time. The Sabres acquired Beaulieu from the Montreal Canadiens in June 2017, but it appears that he is not in their future plans. Beaulieu has appeared in just 26 of the Sabres 47 games this season, tallying just three goals and seven points in those games. Buffalo has made Beaulieu a healthy scratch in 11 of their past 14 games, prompting the trade request.
Ducks and Canucks Complete Trade
The Vancouver Canucks have sent defenseman Michael Del Zotto to the Anaheim Ducks in exchange for Luke Schenn and a 7th round pick in the 2020 NHL Draft. Del Zotto, 28, has been a healthy scratch for 16 of the past 17 games with the Canucks after playing in all 82 games a season ago. He has scored just one goal and three assists in his 23 games this season with the Canucks. Schenn was in his first season with the Ducks, and appeared in just eight games, and did not tally a point on the season. Earlier this week, the Ducks send winger Pontus Aberg to the Minnesota Wild for a pair of young players. Aberg had 19 points this season for the Ducks and will give the Wild another scoring weapon.