Happy Christmas to all and Happy World Juniors!
It’s that time of year again for arguably a top 3 tournament in all of sports, the World Juniors!
If you’re not a fan of this tournament you are really missing out because these kids, top prospects and recent top draft picks come to play. You’re also missing out on some Bruins prospects as well as Team Finland’s Matias Mantykivi and Team Russia’s Roman Bychkov will be representing their countries this year. Unfortunately, Boston Bruins 2019 first round draft pick (30th overall) came down with COVID just last week and will not be able to participate in the World Juniors this year.
As those top prospects and draft picks from around the world battle it out in a bubble in Edmonton, there’s talk that the NHL’s newly aligned and all-Canadian Division may have to begin in a bubble themselves when the 2021 NHL season begins January 13.
The Lightning keeps striking with cap friendly moves as they work their way under the $81.5 million salary cap.
That and more in the latest BHN Puck Links!
For yours truly, there’s nothing like working off that food coma with a Bloody Caesar or an Irish Coffee and the World Juniors on Christmas night and Boxing Day! In fact, some of my favorite memories of my time in Montreal were going to McLean’s Pub and meeting up with my mates for some good old fashioned craic and USA vs Canada. For Bruins fans today, get a glimpse of the future when Mantykivi and Finland battle Germany at 6 PM ET and then when Beecher’s former USA teammates take on Bychkov and Russia at 9:30 PM ET. (NHL.com)
It appears that the NHL North Division will be able to begin their season in their respective NHL arenas. There was talk on Christmas Eve that Canadian and Provincial health authorities were insisting they begin in a temporary bubble, tentatively until February 1 but according to NHL Deputy Commissioner Bill Daly, they will begin in arenas. As with anything COVID-related, this could change within the next hour. (TSN)
NHLPA Executive Director Donald Fehr chimed in as well on the topic of starting on time. (Sportsnet)
The Tampa Bay Lightning were able to sign restricted free agent Anthony Cirelli to another cap-friendly deal at three years, $14.4 million with an annual cap hit of $4.8 million. After that and placing Nikita Kucherov on long-term injured reserve on Wednesday, the Lightning likely have just one more move to get under the cap for the season opener on January 13. (NBC)
Finally, if you’re looking for some other good stuff to watch on the tele, and you’re a fan of the Pogues or even just music in general, I highly recommend this documentary on the birthday boy Shane MacGowan. (Crock of Gold)
Speaking of, Happy Christmas to all!