It’s the best time of year! The announcement of the Islanders preseason schedule! No...? Well then, I guess you and I just have different ideas of fun.
If you’re more into NHL trades, free agency discussion, and an Isles prospect on the rise, I suppose we can have some of that too. Just don’t overlook those priceless September nights with the Devils.
- William Dufour scored again (but only once, not four. Bust.) and notched an assist in the final as Saint John won the Memorial Cup. [Sportsnet]
- Dufour was named tournament MVP, with seven goals — one short of Dale Hawerchuk’s record [Isles]
- Before that, several thoughts and bits of praise from teammates and coaches for Dufour, who is looking like way more than a typical fifth-round pick. [Athletic]
- In the latest Islanders Anxiety podcast, Dan and Mike enjoy that this godforsaken season is finally over, that the Cup final was actually watchable, and that they can actually ponder big-fish trades or free agents for the Islanders without being completely insane. [LHH]
- In the SB Nation NHL Mock Draft, I selected Marco Kasper to give you a new
reason to hate usway to start a Bailey argument. [LHH] (But seriously, the offseason roster and Hall of Fame discussions in comments continue to be great fun. Thanks, everybody.)
- By the way, the rest of the posts from our network-wide mock draft can be found here.
- The Islanders ECHL affiliate has named a new coach who needs a double-decker nameplate: Jordan Lavallee-Smotherman. [Railers HC]
- The Islanders announce their schedule of six preseason games, and in a refreshing departure, the home games are actually at home. [Isles | Newsday]
- The Los Angeles Kings ended your Kevin Fiala dreams last night, acquiring the winger from the cap-crunched Wild and signing him to a seven-year deal. The Wild received the 19th overall pick and U of Minnesota captain Brock Faber. No pressure, kid. [Hockey Wilderness | NHL]
- Several bits that I already forget from Pierre LeBrun about free agents. Old news about Zdeno Chara waiting until end of summer. And speculation about Pittsburgh, Colorado and Carolina’s free agents. (Nino’s heading to market, his vocal ol’ agent announces.) [Athletic]
- More bits like that, particularly on whether Malkin and Letang remain with the Penguins, a situation that is “coming to a head” as player(s) and team face uncomfortable salary cap and aging realities. [Sportsnet | NHL]
- Another topic is the tough injury to Anthony Duclair after a breakout season, though a long recovery may open up some LTIR space for them. [Sportsnet]
- The Blackhawks won’t rule out a trade of Alex DeBrincat, mostly because you should never say never unless something is really bad for you...which trading DeBrincat could be, but whatever. [NHL]
- The list of Lightning injuries is numerous, including a “significant quad tear” for Brayden Point. Sure could’ve used that one of the previous two postseasons, jerk. [TSN]
- The Muslim hockey community is beaming over Nazem Kadri becoming the first to win the Stanley Cup. [Sportsnet] Back to UFAs though, Kadri would love to stay in Colorado but knows this is his moment to cash in. [Sportsnet]
- Ouch, Winnipeg: Pierre-Luc Dubois intends to test free agency in 2024. [Sportsnet]
- Luke Richardson spoke to media about accepting the challenge of coaching the Blackhawks. [TSN]
- Some premature 2022-23 power rankings just because. [ESPN]
- The (assistant) coaching merry-go-round continues with John Stevens and Sean Burke landing in Vegas. [Sportsnet]