In today’s NHL rumors rundown, a video surfaced of Connor McDavid seemingly nursing a knee injury. Is the Oilers’ captain dealing with a nagging issue? Meanwhile, the Toronto Maple Leafs were unable to put the Tampa Bay Lightning away in their first elimination game. What changes might be in store for their lineup? There is speculation about why Valeri Nichuskin is away from the Colorado Avalanche as they try to fend off a surging Seattle Kraken, plus the Winnipeg Jets were eliminated from the postseason. What’s next for the team?
Is Connor McDavid Injured?
TSN’s Ryan Rishaug posted footage of McDavid rubbing his knee during typical drills at practice on Thursday. From the appearance of the video, it looks to be a left leg injury that might be hampering the Oilers’ captain. Rishaug tweeted, “Playoff time, everyone is nursing something. 97 shaking off what looks to be a sore leg at practice today.” Bruce McCurdy of the Edmonton Journal tweeted, “The Doughty hit in Game 3 is the prime suspect.”
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Frank Seravalli of Daily Faceoff also reported on the speculated injury and said, “He (Connor McDavid) is not hurt. At least the last time I checked in, a couple of days, to ask that exact same question, “Is there something going on that I am missing” and the answer was no.”
He went on to point out that McDavid was flying in games and that there was nothing wrong with his hand or his feet. Others have suggested the fact McDavid was even taking part in practice means he’s fine, or that whatever is bothering him isn’t serious.
Shake-Up Coming for the Jets?
After being eliminated by the Vegas Golden Knights on Thursday night, Winnipeg Jets coach Rick Bowness didn’t mince words when it came to talking about his team’s performance in an elimination game. He said during his media availability following the game that it would be short and sweet. He then said, “I’m so disappointed and disgusted right now… There was no pushback, the same crap that we saw back in February.”
Expect there to be offseason changes and questions about whether players like Mark Scheifele, Connor Hellebucyk, Pierre-Luc Dubois, and others will want to return. Jeff Marek writes, “And now a fascinating offseason for Jets GM Kevin Cheveldayoff begins.”
Hellebuyck, Scheifele, Blake Wheeler, Nino Niederreiter, and defensemen Dylan DeMelo and Brenden Dillon are eligible next summer for unrestricted free-agent status. Ted Wyman of the Winnipeg Sun wrote of Pierre-Luc Dubois:
source: ‘Hard decisions await Jets’ – Paul Friesen – Winnipeg Sun – 04/28/2023
“You’d have been hard-pressed to believe that Dubois was trying his hardest in Game 5. Unless by that, you mean he was trying his hardest to get out of town, and the organization, as quickly as possible after this season.”
Will Maple Leafs Take Justin Holl Out of the Lineup?
The Maple Leafs failed to eliminate the Lightning on Thursday and there are some lineup changes expected for Game 6 between the two teams. As per Sportsnet Stats, defenseman Justin Holl has been on the ice for 14 goals against. That’s the most by any Maple Leafs player in a single playoff series over the past decade. He is likely to come out, even though head coach Sheldon Keefe did try to defend the player by suggesting he’s not on the ice by himself.
As for whether Bunting goes back in for Game 6, that has yet to be determined.
Why is Nichushkin Away from the Avalanche?
According to a report by The Denver Post Avalanche forward Valeri Nichushkin was involved in a police incident at the team hotel in Seattle, resulting in a woman who was found intoxicated in his room being transported to hospital for medical treatment. Nichushkin left Seattle that day and while his agent denies that alcohol has anything to do with his absence, it’s not exactly clear why he’s not with the team at this time.
Nichushkin did not play in Game 3 of the Avalanche’s first-round playoff series against the Kraken. He hasn’t been with the team since. There is no criminal investigation stemming from the incident and The Denver Post adds:
Avalanche coach Jared Bednar has said Nichushkin’s ongoing absence from the team is not disciplinary and not related to legal issues. When contacted by The Post, a representative for Nichushkin reiterated that the team has made it clear his client is not with the team for personal reasons.source – ‘Intoxicated woman found in Avalanche forward Valeri Nichushkin’s hotel room required transport to hospital, police report says’ – BENNETT DURANDO | SHELLY BRADBURY – The Denver Post – 04/27/2023
$1B Bid Coming For Senators
According to reports, including one by Bruce Garrioch of Postmedia, The Remington Group (that includes Ryan Reynolds) is preparing a bid of over $1 billion to purchase the Ottawa Senators.
The belief is Reynolds and Bratty would like to get this deal done as soon as possible and have been aggressive in their pursuit of the Senators. As part of the proposal, we’re led to believe Reynolds and Bratty are committed to building a new rink close to downtown Ottawa that will be surrounded by an entertainment district.source – ‘BILLION DOLLAR BID: Ryan Reynolds and Remington Group prepping billion dollar bid for Senators’ – Bruce Garrioch – Ottawa Sun – 04/28/2023