- Last night, three Minnesota Wild prospects in Marat Khusnutdinov, Vladislav Firstov and Pavel Novak faced off in Edmonton as Russia and Czech Republic each played their second game of the group stage. While all three of them were unable to secure a point in the 2-0 Czech win, the top-line center Khusnutdinov was able to impress, using his effective skating and agility all throughout the match.
Marat Khusnutdinov being Marat Khusnutdinov pic.twitter.com/oQwGN7t0IN— Dylan Griffing (@Dylan_Griffing) December 28, 2020
- The Athletic’s Scott Wheeler talked to Matt Boldy about his rejection from last year’s USA team and how he was able to turn it into motivation this year. [The Athletic]
Off the trail...
- Hey! There were a couple of trades over the weekend! Firstly, the Arizona Coyotes sent center Derek Stepan to the Ottawa Senators for a second-round pick. [Silver Seven Sens]
- Secondly, the Senators received more, and quite frankly bailed out, the Tampa Bay Lightning by acquiring Braydon Coburn, Cedric Pacquette and a second-round pick, for two contract dumps in Marion Gaborik and Anders Nilsson. [Silver Seven Sens]
- The St. Louis Blues signed winger Mike Hoffman to a PTO. Which might seem extremely odd, but there is a one-year deal coming his way once the team is able to put Vladimir Tarasenko and Alexander Steen on LTIR. [St. Louis Game Time]
It appears what the Blues are doing is waiting until the start of the season to sign Hoffman, which would allow them to wait to put Tarasenko and Steen on Long-Term Injury Reserve, allowing them to maximize their LTIR money. This points to Hoffman joining the Blues. #stlblues— Jeremy Rutherford (@jprutherford) December 28, 2020
- The NHL Return of Ilya Kovalchuk appears to be done for now. The 37-year-old has signed a two-year deal with Avangard Omsk of the KHL. [KHL]
- Some more free agents are getting snapped up before training camps begin on Jan. 3, as goaltender Craig Anderson has signed a PTO with the Washington Capitals. [Japers Rink]