In today’s NHL rumors rundown, Keith Yandle’s Iron Man Streak is going to come to an end on Saturday. It’s a questionable decision that doesn’t make much sense from the perspective that the Philadelphia Flyers aren’t playing meaningful games right now. Arizona Coyotes’ forward Jay Beagle is taking heat from everyone except the Coyotes’ announce crew after attacking Troy Terry of the Anaheim Ducks. Could the New York Islanders move out some contracts? Finally, were the Boston Bruins ever close to moving Jeremy Swayman?
Yandle’s Iron Man Streak to End
Flyers interim head coach Mike Yeo confirmed to media on Saturday morning that the organization has made the decision to sit veteran defenseman Keith Yandle in Saturday night’s game against the Toronto Maple Leafs. The reason given was that the Flyers want to get some young guys in the lineup when games don’t mean anything, but that may also be a reason to keep Yandle in and let him stretch his consecutive games-play record out as long as possible.
His streak currently sits at 989 games. He’ll fall 11 games short of 1,000 as this will be the first game he’s not played since March 22, 2009. Yeo said Yandle handled the news well and as a consummate pro and was obviously disappointed. Yeo added, “no way does this diminish what he accomplished.”
Yandle said that he understands from a business perspective why the Flyers made the decision and he’ll do what he can to support the young guys.
One positive thing that this does do is it gives other teams who might consider signing him next season as a UFA one less reason to hold off. There would have been teams not interested in bringing him in knowing that there would have been immense pressure to keep his iron man streak alive. On the other hand, it wouldn’t be surprising if he chose to retire after this season as well.
This is good news for Phil Kessel who will now have a legitimate chance to set the record.
Coyotes Broadcast Crew Taking Heat
There’s a lot of attention being paid to the commentary crew of the Arizona Coyotes who praised Jay Beagle for cross-checking Trevor Zegras and beating on Troy Terry of the Anaheim Ducks on Friday night. Zegras had scored another Michigan-style goal in the game and then poked at a loose puck near the end of a 5-0 win for the Ducks and Beagle snapped. The announce crew applauded Beagle’s actions and said, “That’s the problem with these young players. You wanna embarrass guys? You wanna skill it up? You better be prepared to get punched in the mouth.”
Zegras had a lot to say after the game and said of the player who kept punching Terry who wasn’t engaged in a fight, “It’s humiliating and I think he should be f****** punished.”
Islanders to Move Out Contracts?
As per Stefen Rosner of NYI Hockey Now, he believes the New York Islanders are prepared to move out a couple of contracts this offseason in an attempt to go after some bigger fish. He writes that the team has a number of UFAs that won’t be back next season and adds:
As for upgrading, the New York Islanders will need to move at least two contracts to create the space necessary to bring in some high-end talent. At the very least, one of those contracts needs to be Josh Bailey’s, which has a cap hit of $10 million over the next two seasons ($5 million AAV).
Rosner adds that goaltender Semyon Varlamov could be shopped. He was dangled at this year’s NHL Trade Deadline but elected not to waive his 16-team no-trade clause in a couple of situations. There is a chance the Islanders elect to hang onto Varlamov.
Bruins Weren’t Going to Move Swayman
Jimmy Murphy of Boston Hockey Now said that the Bruins were heavily in on defenseman Jakob Chychrun during the trade deadline but the Coyotes wanted goaltender Jeremy Swayman in return. For Bruins GM Don Sweeney, that was a non-starter. Murphy said that the Coyotes wouldn’t change their ask, which is why talks between the two teams never amounted to much.
Jim Parsons is a senior THW freelance writer, part-time journalist and audio/video host who lives, eats, sleeps and breathes NHL news and rumors, while also writing features on the Edmonton Oilers. He’s been a trusted source for five-plus years at The Hockey Writers, but more than that, he’s on a mission to keep readers up to date with the latest NHL rumors and trade talk. Jim is a daily must for readers who want to be “in the know.”