ELC CONTRACT SIGNINGS
Alex Vlasic signed with Chicago Blackhawks for $900,000 for 3 year(s) / Signing Bonus of $400,000.
Arttu Ruotsalainen signed with Chicago Blackhawks for $700,000 for 3 year(s) / Signing Bonus of $200,000.
Kasper Bjorkqvist has been deleted from New York Islanders.
Felix Sandstrom has been deleted from New York Islanders.
Michael Del Zotto retired from Quebec Nordiques
Kevin Poulin retired from Minnesota North Stars
Jason Demers retired
Joonas Donskoi retired from Chicago Blackhawks
Matt Lorito retired
Dan Sexton retired
Andrew Ladd retired
James Sheppard retired
The first ever Free Agent Showcase is coming.
The details are out there.
Are you in?
Jesse Puljujarvi (73), Y:26-RND:2-STL.
Timothy Liljegren (74).
ELC CONTRACT SIGNINGS
Vitali Kravtsov signed with Vegas Golden Knights for $1,500,000 for 3 year(s) / Signing Bonus of $750,000.
Martin Kaut signed with New Jersey Devils for $1,000,000 for 3 year(s) / Signing Bonus of $500,000.
Carl Soderberg retired
ELC CONTRACT SIGNINGS
Bowen Byram signed with New York Islanders for $2,000,000 for 3 year(s) / Signing Bonus of $1,000,000.
Akira Schmid signed with New York Islanders for $700,000 for 3 year(s) / Signing Bonus of $200,000.
Alexander Alexeyev signed with New York Islanders for $800,000 for 3 year(s) / Signing Bonus of $300,000.
ELC CONTRACT SIGNINGS
Isaak Phillips signed with Philadelphia Flyers for $500,000 for 3 year(s) / Signing Bonus of $100,000.
Samuel Bolduc signed with Philadelphia Flyers for $600,000 for 3 year(s) / Signing Bonus of $150,000.
Nikita Alexandrov signed with Philadelphia Flyers for $900,000 for 3 year(s) / Signing Bonus of $400,000.
Ryan McAllister has been added to Toronto Maple Leafs.
Thomas Milic has been added to Montreal Canadiens.
Timur Mukhanov has been added to Columbus Blue Jackets.
Ruslan Khazheyev has been added to Philadelphia Flyers.
Stanislav Yarovoi has been added to Montreal Canadiens.
Bogdan Konyushkov has been added to New York Rangers.
Vadim Zherenko has been added to Columbus Blue Jackets.
Alexander Rykov has been added to New York Rangers.
Quentin Miller has been added to Philadelphia Flyers.
Beckett Hendrickson has been added to New York Rangers.
Sam Lipkin has been added to Montreal Canadiens.
Hunter McKown has been added to Los Angeles Kings.
Matthew Mania has been added to Chicago Blackhawks.
Mac Hollowell has been added to Colorado Avalanche.
Domenick Fensore has been added to Toronto Maple Leafs.
Alexis Gendron has been added to Toronto Maple Leafs.
Paul Fischer has been added to St Louis Blues.
Matthieu Cataford has been added to Chicago Blackhawks.
Gavin McCarthy has been added to Chicago Blackhawks.
Martin Misiak has been added to New York Islanders.
Jakub Dvorak has been added to New York Rangers.
Quinton Burns has been added to Chicago Blackhawks.
Aydar Suniev has been added to Hamilton Mustangs.
Erik Kallgren (71).
Trevor van Riemsdyk (71).
Denis Malgin has been deleted from Edmonton Oilers.
Aleksi Saarela has been deleted from Edmonton Oilers.
Lucas Forsell has been added to Montreal Canadiens.
Arturs Silovs has been added to Seattle Kraken.
Gage Goncalves has been added to Montreal Canadiens.
Coulson Pitre has been added to New York Rangers.
Beau Akey has been added to Pittsburgh Penguins.
Sawyer Mynio has been added to Boston Bruins.
Alex Ciernik has been added to Anaheim Mighty Ducks.
Kalan Lind has been added to New York Rangers.
Denver Barkey has been added to Columbus Blue Jackets.
Riley Duran has been added to Tampa Bay Lightning.
Jack Matier has been added to Hamilton Mustangs.
Emil Pieniniemi has been added to Toronto Maple Leafs.
Josh Filmon has been added to Seattle Kraken.
Caeden Bankier has been added to Seattle Kraken.
Hampton Slukynsky has been added to Colorado Avalanche.
ELC CONTRACT SIGNINGS
Mikey Anderson signed with Edmonton Oilers for $800,000 for 3 year(s) / Signing Bonus of $300,000.
Alexander Romanov signed with Edmonton Oilers for $1,000,000 for 3 year(s) / Signing Bonus of $500,000.
Noah Dobson signed with Edmonton Oilers for $1,000,000 for 3 year(s) / Signing Bonus of $500,000.
"We've changed our minds.." was the announcement coming out of the NSHL office on Tuesday afternoon.
"We're not done with re-location for the NSHL23 season. Following an inquiry from an anonymous GhamM, we've sent professionals to investigate false claims coming out of Dallas. Upon receiving the report from our professional resources, we confirm that the Stars' claims of being from 'Big D' are in fact, false."
As a result of these findings, GM Darren has been told they need to relocate immediately. "We don't take false claims lightly."
GM Darren reluctantly agreed to move their franchise to Washingt.. err Buffa... err Ottaw..
"Following the indecision process, we've found a home that we think is more fitting of the situation. We're moving them from 'Big D' to Minni. It sounds wild, but we owe it to our fans 1) to be up front and honest with the package we're offering and 2) to bring an organization back to the State of Hockey."
So, effective immediately the Stars are heading north to Minnesota and will play NSHL23 as the Minnesota North Stars. They will play out of the Central Division, bumping the Colorado Avalanche into the Pacific.
South Carolina, here we come!
The state has a lot of pride, so we figured we would show off our pride, and announce that our MSHL team is now playing out of the Pee Dee County, in the Florence Civic Centre, and will be the Pee Dee Pride!
The state of Carolina welcomes pride, and will be glad to show off the pride(s) flag at all games.
“We welcome all that come to Pee Dee to show off their pride colours, flaunt them freely. South Carolina is now a Pride loving State”
With this announcement, we urge all Carolinians to show off their pride, and fly the pride flag off of their cars, off buildings wherever they want to flaunt their pride. Be proud of the pride flag.
Casey Mittelstadt (73).
Sean Durzi (72).
Y:23-RND:4-LAK, Y:23-RND:5-FLA, Y:23-RND:5-VGK, Y:23-RND:7-CAR.
Felix Nilsson has been added to New York Islanders.
Anton Wahlberg has been added to New York Rangers.
Ilya Safonov has been added to Seattle Kraken.
Carson Bjarnason has been added to New York Rangers.
Tyson Hinds has been added to Seattle Kraken.
Lukas Dragicevic has been added to Hamilton Mustangs.
Nico Myatovic has been added to New York Rangers.
Ethan Gauthier has been added to Pittsburgh Penguins.
David Edstrom has been added to Pittsburgh Penguins.
Kasper Halttunen has been added to Anaheim Mighty Ducks.
Gavin Brindley has been added to Hamilton Mustangs.
Tanner Molendyk has been added to New York Islanders.
Easton Cowan has been added to New York Rangers.
Amadeus Lombardi has been added to Hamilton Mustangs.
Trey Augustine has been added to New York Rangers.
Michael Hrabel has been added to New York Rangers.
Charlie Stramel has been added to Anaheim Mighty Ducks.
Nick Lardis has been added to Los Angeles Kings.
Troy Stecher (73), Y:24-RND:1-MTL, Y:25-RND:1-QUE, Y:27-RND:1-VGK.
Y:23-RND:2-COL, Y:23-RND:7-COL, Y:23-RND:7-CBJ, Y:24-RND:1-TOR, Y:25-RND:1-TOR.
Y:23-RND:3-ANA, Y:23-RND:4-ANA, Y:23-RND:4-CAR.
Brady Skjei (76), Derek Forbort (75).
Y:23-RND:7-EDM, Y:23-RND:6-EDM, Y:23-RND:2-EDM.
Emil Bemstrom (P), $300,000 (Money).
Quentin Musty has been added to New York Rangers.
Calum Ritchie has been added to New York Rangers.
Mikhail Gulyayev has been added to Toronto Maple Leafs.
Cody Eakin (75), Joseph Blandisi (72), Y:27-RND:3-VGK.
Y:23-RND:2-FLA, Y:23-RND:4-QUE, Y:23-RND:5-FLA, Y:23-RND:7-TBL.
$1,000,000 (Money), Y:23-RND:1-TBL, Y:23-RND:4-LAK, Y:23-RND:5-TBL, Y:23-RND:5-MTL, Y:24-RND:2-TOR.
Brendan Perlini (73).
Y:23-RND:5-ANA, Y:23-RND:5-TOR, Y:23-RND:5-CAR, Y:23-RND:7-QUE.
Michael Carcone (67), Y:24-RND:5-PHI.
Vladimir Tarasenko (77).
Kirill Kaprizov (77).
The NSHL23 Draft kicked off on Wednesday night with the Boston Bruins making the 1st overall selection and doing as expected: take Connor Bedard with the 1st overall pick.
Following a Draft Lottery victory a couple of months ago, the Boston Bruins had more than enough time to listen to offers on the potentially generational talent but nothing even came close. Connor Bedard was always going to be an NSHL Bruin.
The path following Bedard is far from certain, so from pick #2 on is where the Draft really begins.
While the league has commenced the Draft process, no "official clock" on making picks will start until Monday morning to give everyone an opportunity to enjoy their weekend plans.
The off-season was only under way for a couple of minutes before the moves started to be confirmed and off-season overhauls commenced.
Seattle GM Ray cashed in a few of the Kraken's NSHL22 Auction Items and immediately were able to provide Leon Draisaitl with an NHL Re-Rate, seriously upgrading the former Hart Trophy winner's abilities. They then piggybacked that by using their RFA Tag, ensuring he would not be available for OS Season when free agency opened. Seattle signed Leon for 2 years @ $6.285M.
The Kraken also finalized a deal with the Toronto Maple Leafs to acquire 26 year-old Thomas Chabot and applied another Auction item to void his current contract, making him a restricted free agent (RFA) for the second off-season in a row.
Following another "earlier than we'd like" exit from the post-season, and perhaps out of pure fear of having the Hamilton Mustangs in the same conference and some real competition, Seattle has already started a roster refresh.
This is only Day 1.
With the conclusion of Awards hardware being handed out and the 22 Vegas Classic, another season is officially in the books. NSHL22 is in the rearview mirror, which means NSHL23 is on the horizon.
League files have been turned over, year-end income has been added to team accounts, a re-location has been approved (!!) and yes, NSHL and MSHL re-rates have been completed.
Players are re-rated in the league they played 20 regular season games in (10 for goalies), and where players played 20 (10) in both leagues, they were re-rated in both and an average rating was then applied.
Players were rated based on their NSHL22 age (the age they were when the stats were earned) and then ages were rolled over effective July 1, 2023 which is the age players will remain throughout NSHL23.
The Minnesota Wild re-location to New Jersey and the Hamilton Mustangs backing out of their end of a deal to re-locate to Vancouver, means some league re-alignment is required heading into NSHL23.
New Jersey will join the Atlantic Division in the Eastern Conference. This pushes Philadelphia into the Northeast where they will join their Pennsylvania state rivals and the last two Stanley Cup Champions in the same division.
With one team going from the Eastern Conference to the West, someone has to go West and that team is the Hamilton Mustangs who will join the Central Division where the Wild came from.
The league has updated the NSHL23 League Average Salaries off of NSHL22 performance which decides Bridge Values for the upcoming off-season and also One-Way Contract values, which will be used in free agency.
For the NSHL23 season, Bridge Values will be as follows:
The complete breakdown of league average salaries, one-way contract values and bridge values can be found here.
General Managers should now be reviewing their rosters and confirming to the league that any UFAs can be released, and/or apply any Auction items that are soon to expire. RFA Tags would now also be applied.
Once a General Manager has confirmed their UFAs can be released, they are allowed to make trades. Once all General Managers have confirmed, we can start the Draft and explore that Free Agent Showcase they keep advertising for.
The Carolina Hurricanes have earned the right to host the NSHL23 All-Star Classic as being the team with the lowest bank account once all end of season income is deposited into team accounts.
Carolina last hosted the event in NSHL17 when they also were awarded the event because of their financial situation. The league has a limit of hosting once every five (5) seasons, meaning the stars aligned perfectly for Carolina to bring the event back and grab another handout.
Carolina ends NSHL22 with a little over $22.9M in the bank finishing ahead of Tampa Bay at a little over $24M, and Toronto with a little over $25.5M.
The format of the event is not yet decided, and it is believe the league will be looking to revamp the entire format to make it easier on all sides. While teams certainly enjoyed extra payout from the additional two games at the Vegas Classic, it was certainly tedious to get all lines in and then have results updated in a timely fashion.
The Chicago Blackhawks have been a model franchise for the NSHL. A recent dynasty. Three Stanley Cups in four years. They have set a high bar in the hockey world that the 'other' version should consider adopting the NHL's policy of stealing trends from our simulated hockey world.
And then this year, it all came crashing down.
Chicago missed the Playoffs on the final day of the season.
To the lowly reduce, reuse, recycle franchise known as the St Louis Blues.
Then Chicago lost the Draft Lottery.
To the luck of the draw.
Now the Chicago GM lost the NSHL Classic and even the STHS Online Editor apparently wanted nothing to do with them.
"If there's ever a time for a fresh start, it's now. No, I'm not running around begging people to start loving pizza and lasagna like that other guy.. we're not leaving Chicago. We're taking on a new, modern logo that will turn the page on this let down of a season and show our fans we're not in the same league as the ticketgate Blues who only ever wanted to make the Playoffs this year because I made it so popular. We cannot wait for the off-season to begin to start building this thing back up." GM Miller said on the local NSHL Blackhawks podcast now streaming on wherever you get your podcasts and sponsored by MeUndies.
Following a podcast where the Chicago Blackhawks revealed they had a modern logo coming out, St Louis GM Jamie said he wasn't going to let Chicago GM Miller steal the thunder "once again".
"What Miller seems to forget is I won the Stanley Cup first, NSHL13 as the Florida Panthers. My team was so dominant I chose to ride off into the sunset and only then did Miller begin to win anything. Miller thinks Chicago can escape the Blues? He sure couldn't on the final day of the regular season.."
GM Jamie said the refresh in branding was in the works well before Chicago's announcement, but "yet again" GM Miller put word out that this whole modernization thing was his idea.
"I can't wait until suddenly Chicago figures out how to properly save their lines, then they'll claim to be all competitive and stuff.."
This off-season is already off to a bang!
There was no press release or podcast interview to report off of, but on Saturday the Colorado Avalanche dropped a new logo they plan to use for the NSHL23 season.
The team's re-brand is the 4th major change already this off-season following the Wild relocation to New Jersey and then both Chicago and St Louis logo modernizations.
Colorado saw some fantastic results from the 22 Vegas Classic with young All-Stars Jason Robertson and Robert Thomas contributing a combined 29 PTS in their three games played for Team Terry in the MSHL edition of the 22 Classic.
When asked for comment on if he'd confirm the Avs' rebrand, GM Scrowder said "Yeah, sure, I guess."
Another NSHL Awards season has come and gone after Tuesday's (technically early) release of the Awards voting by the league's 24 General Managers.
The Dallas Stars walked away with the event's biggest prize as Nikita Kucherov took home the Hart Trophy as League MVP, edging out Montreal's Jordan Binnington by 2 votes. Kucherov finished tied for the league in Points, finished 2nd in Assists, tied for 1st in Shots and was tied for 2nd in PTS/20 MINS.
Jordan Binnington didn't walk away empty-handed as he was named Goaltender of the Year and took home the Vezina, beating out the only other nomineee, Los Angeles Kings' netminder Joonas Korpisalo in a landslide 21-3 vote.
That wasn't the only award on the night going to Montreal as General Manager Jesse took home what some consider the "highest honour" Award as GM of the Year, receiving 15 votes and 12 more than the runner-up and Stanley Cup winner, GM Brad from the Flyers.
In the MSHL the night belonged to Cale Makar who won runaway honours as both MSHL MVP and the Defenseman of the Year. Makar had a remarkable regular season, notching 120 PTS in 77 GP as a defenseman.
Happy Friday everyone. I'm Elliott Friedgeman and I have some thoughts in this the Cup Final edition of Thoughts from the Friedge.
On the Los Angeles Kings...
The 22 Kings are giving me NSHL11 Minnesota North Stars vibes with a new-ish General Manager and with all due respect, a band of misfits making their way through a pack and sort of stumbling into a Cup Final where they may actually be favourites, all things considered. Please don't aggregate me and say "Friedge picks the Kings to win..".. that's not what I'm saying.
Look, Los Angeles is getting career-defining performances from all over: Zemgus Girgensons has 25 PTS heading into the Final, Brunner has 21 PTS, including 4 game-winning goals and of course Joonas Korpisalo has been a monster performer between the pipes.
Whatever the Hollywood ending is for this Kings squad, they've performed well above their heads throughout this post-season and with all of that being said, they would not have even made the Playoffs if they were based out of an Eastern city. Now THAT is something that will give teams like Carolina and Quebec fits if the Kings do end up taking this thing. Again, I'm not saying I think they will...
I was asked recently: Should there be GM of the Year talk for Kings' GM Nick? Every year two GMs make the Stanley Cup Finals and only five times in league history has the GM that has won the Cup, also been named GMofY.. so if Los Angeles doesn't pull it off do they still get consideration? Tough.
On the Philadelphia Flyers...
I don't know that anyone saw this coming, likely even the Flyers. Does McDavid get his first Stanley Cup? Does the Daniel Sprong "Cinderella" story have the happiest of endings? Time will tell.
The thing about the Flyers heading into this series is, I don't see a way in which one of their players takes home the Conn Smythe. By comparison to LA, there's no real stand out performance to date, so someone will have to absolutely shine. Could it happen? Of course it could but for now I can't see Philadelphia earning Playoff MVP honours.
Can we talk for a minute about the Martin Jones storyline? 32 year old goalie with a burdensome $7.75M contract who starts the year on Carolina, gets tossed into the Leon Draisaitl trade with Toronto as a salary dump, and gets flipped to Philadelphia with Connor Mackey for Jamie Benn. Now, he and 40 year old Mike Smith will seemingly split goaltending duties for the NSHL22 Stanley Cup Final. What a ride.
One of the things often looked over and not talked about in the sim hockey community is the "curse" or lack thereof tied to the Conference Champions touching the Conference trophies or not (hey, there are Conference trophies?!). This year we saw the Flyers grab the Eastern trophy without hesitation, while Kings' Captain Jake McCabe (I know right!?) avoided it like the plague.
On the MSHL Final...
The battle of the MSHL heavyweights: Grand Rapids and Providence. It was always meant to come down to these two, wasn't it? The two teams who finished a point apart in regular season standings (153 Bruins to 152 Griffins), but who were both head and shoulders above the rest of their conferences and basically had the titles sewn up mid-year.
Much like how I feel about the Conn Smythe race is how I'm feeling about the MSHL Playoff MVP as it will be tough for a Griffins player to shine brighter than the absolute mashing Riley Nash and Melker Karlsson are performing on their competition. Nash has 45 PTS and Karlsson has 43 PTS while the next closest is Colorado Eagles' forward Rob Thomas at 25. Yes, that's a 20 point difference from 1st to 3rd.
If Carter Hart stands on his head and Grand Rapids takes this all in short order, then maybe, but I just don't see it.
On that NSHL23 re-location...
Last week I left some crumbs that I'd heard about a potential provincial rivalry "bet" that would force someone to relocate and through some digging (and with help from the extremely reliable Kyper), we've been informed that it's the Hamilton Mustangs who will apparently be heading west.
I sent a note to GM Terry to ask what the bet was they lost, as it apparently had something to do with his admitted hatred for the NHL Vancouver Canucks.
"At the end of the day it doesn't matter. I made a bet with Jay and well, it didn't pan out for me and being the honourable guy that I identify as, it looks like I'm heading west. I also want to be clear on this, Jay isn't some mob boss forcing my hand in all this, a bet's a bet I didn't have to accept the terms."
The end of that statement is really telling as GM Terry admits "he didnt have to accept the terms" which tells us all he's learned a thing or two from the Jeff Drouin-Deslauriers NMC contract offer. Anyways..
One is left wondering where exactly Hamilton will end up.. I know what you're all thinking: "Friedge, he's going West, duh!"
And with that, we'll wrap it up there. Remember: if you're hungry for more from the NSHL, open the Friedge!