Rieder’s agent says Coyotes unwilling to take ‘fair offer’

Contract negotiations between the Arizona Coyotes and right-winger Tobias Rieder have hit a standstill.

The restricted free agent has already informed the Coyotes he won't attend training camp before signing a new contract, and now his agent, Darren Ferris, has criticized the Coyotes for being unwilling to make a deal despite being "not far apart," adding that he doesn't believe anything is imminent.

"We've made them a fair offer at two years at $2.5 million a year, and they're unwilling to do it," Ferris told The Arizona Republic. "Tobi brings a lot of intangibles to that team. I know he's a fan favorite. He loves Arizona, but it's disappointing that they're unwilling to compensate this kid fairly."

According to Craig Morgan of Arizona Sports, the Coyotes desire a deal closer to $2.2 million-$2.3 million per year.

Ferris has previously stated that Rieder is considering offers from the KHL, and will make a decision following the World Cup. The Germany native is a member of Team Europe.

Coyotes general manager John Chayka wouldn't comment on the negotiations, but spoke about the process.

"We feel like we've made him some real considerable long-term offers that are right on par with the longest offers we've ever made in this organization," Chayka told The Republic.

Rieder, 23, played in all 82 games last year, scoring 37 points. He's tallied 58 points over two seasons with the Coyotes.

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Watch: Mic’d up Team Europe sings ‘Olé, Olé, Olé’ to celebrate OT winner

They may not always understand each other, but Team Europe's diverse group speaks the universal language of music and football chants.

The triumphant underdogs jumped up and down singing "'Olé, Olé, Olé," following Tomas Tatar's overtime winner Sunday that unexpectedly catapulted Europe into the World Cup of Hockey final against Canada.

Team Europe will continue its quest to pull off a modern 'Miracle on Ice' in Game 1 of the best-of-three championship series Tuesday night.

(Video courtesy: NHL.com)

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Season Preview: 3 players to watch on the Coyotes

theScore is previewing each team leading up to the 2016-17 season.

After finishing with just 56 points in 2014-15, the Arizona Coyotes began the climb back to respectability last season, missing the postseason by just nine points. Arizona looks to take another step this year under new GM John Chayka. Here are three Coyotes to keep an eye on this season:

Dylan Strome

The Coyotes introduced rookies Max Domi and Anthony Duclair last season, and will likely do the same this year with first-year pivots Christian Dvorak and Dylan Strome.

After finishing with 111 points in junior last year (and 240 points over the past two seasons), the betting is that Strome, 19, is ready to make the jump to the NHL. After Arizona bought out veteran Antoine Vermette, another spot opened up at center.

While the long-term goal is to pair Strome with Domi, Duclair, or some of the team's other budding forward prospects, Strome could start the year paired with veteran wingers like Jamie McGinn and Radim Vrbata, both of whom signed with the Coyotes this summer.

Martin Hanzal

When healthy, center Martin Hanzal provides the Coyotes with size and a dominating presence down the middle. In addition, he's a valuable penalty killer and a great net-front presence on the man advantage.

The problem is that Hanzal spends too much time on the injury reserve. He was limited to 64 games last season and has not played more than 65 games in any of the past six seasons. Still, he scored a career-best 41 points last campaign, and if he can avoid the injury bug, that number figures to increase as the team infuses more young talent.

Hanzal, 29, is a pending unrestricted free agent. In August, Chayka admitted to the possibility that the Coyotes could enter the season with no extension in place. Depending on the team's performance, and if he is still unsigned, the Coyotes could move Hanzal at the trade deadline. In June, Arizona asked Hanzal, who carries a modified no-trade clause, for a list of teams to which he would accept a trade.

Mike Smith

The Coyotes' season will live and die on the performance of starting goalie Mike Smith.

Smith, 34, missed 40 games last season after undergoing core muscle surgery. Upon his return, he posted a 5-4-1 record, a pair of shutouts, and an incredible .944 save percentage. He finished the year 15-13-2, with a .916 save percentage, his second-best with the Coyotes.

When healthy, Smith has been heavily replied upon by head coach Dave Tippett, appearing in no fewer than 62 games in any of his three full seasons in Arizona.

Last season, young backup Louis Domingue proved capable, and could run with the starter's role should Smith falter. Adding another wrinkle, the Coyotes will need to expose a goalie in next summer's expansion draft, and Smith's big-ticket contract - three years remaining with a $5.67 million cap hit - could be made available to Las Vegas.

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Alter: Gimmick no more, Europe justifies World Cup format

When the World Cup of Hockey began over a week ago, Team Europe was an afterthought, already written off.

Pre-tournament games against Team North America suggested that perhaps the European experiment wouldn't work. That notion was only further cemented after a four-period span in which Europe was outscored 9-1 by the kids.

"That was a real turning point for us," defenseman Roman Josi said after Europe beat Sweden 3-2 in overtime to advance to the World Cup final against Canada. "That's when I think we started coming together."

Once the puck dropped for the first round-robin game, Team Europe took on a whole new identity, and changed people's perceptions in the process.

The Outsiders

To understand this underdog story, look no further than Europe head coach Ralph Krueger.

In June 2013, he was dismissed as head coach of the Edmonton Oilers - over Skype - after one lockout-shortened season. After a brief stint as an advisor for Canada at the 2014 Sochi Olympics, Krueger left hockey and is now chairman of the Premier League's Southampton Football Club. It was a career change in sport that is rarely done successfully, especially at the highest level.

Europe's captain, Anze Kopitar, is a perennial All-Star from Slovenia. He's had to carry his nation's hopes at every World Hockey Championship, with Slovenia regularly alternating between staying in the top 16 in order to play in the main tournament, and relegation.

Training camp was in Quebec City, far from Europe, and the team chose to have no national anthem or musical score played before its games, even though a medley was provided by the tournament. Meanwhile, every other team heard its anthem before puck drop, with North America getting both the U.S. and Canadian anthems.

Team Europe: Outsiders by all accounts.

"A lot of the presidents are down there from the eight countries we're representing, but I think we're representing all the rest, which is about 12 to 13 countries in Europe that cannot play in the top six, and I think that the pride in that group right now is large," Krueger said.

A Force, Together

Most of the countries where the members of Team Europe come from wouldn't stand much of a chance at placing on the podium at the Olympics or even a World Championship. In fact, none of the eight nations Team Europe represents has ever been to the final of a best-on-best tournament. United in their difficulties to achieve international supremacy, the Europeans are now in uncharted territory - they're through to the World Cup final with heavily favored Canada.

"Obviously, a big opportunity," said forward Tomas Tatar, who scored twice against Sweden, including the overtime winner. "The story continues. We know and respect Canada and how good they are, but we will be together and we will battle together for a win."

Europe kicked off the World Cup last week by blanking the Americans 3-0. In an instant, the perception of the European team - and the U.S. team - changed. Krueger's squad punched its ticket to the semifinals with a win over the Czechs two days later. The club's latest and most impressive achievement is an overtime win over hockey powerhouse Sweden to keep the run going.

"I think nobody would guess we could be in the final," Marian Hossa said. "It was 33-to-1 odds against us. So it just feels good to be where we're at. I think everybody here is really happy."


A best-on-best international tournament with two select teams was a concept many weren't sure would work. But with North America dazzling every game and Europe in the final, it's the best possible outcome for the organizers who dreamed it up. A Europe-Canada final sheds the World Cup of the gimmick label and helps to grow the game internationally.

"There were half the people who were into it and half the people who weren't," Hossa said. "I think now more people have started getting into it and realizing there are a few guys playing for each of those countries in the final against the best team there is in Canada. Lots of people are going to watch now."

With the final a best-of-three format, Team Europe will play at least two more times, on the biggest international stage, its players taking part in what will likely be the most important international games of their careers.

"I came in here saying that we hoped that a few young children back in those countries get inspired by what we do and become great NHL players in 10 years or 12 years," Krueger said. "And if that happens when I'm old and retired, I hope that it was a part of this tournament that did that."

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Ryan stands by going after Sieloff for MacArthur hit

Emotions ran high at an Ottawa Senators scrimmage Sunday, and Bobby Ryan is standing by his actions.

After roster hopeful Patrick Sieloff delivered a highly questionable hit on Clarke MacArthur that resulted in another concussion for the winger, Bobby Ryan immediately came to MacArthur's defense by dropping the gloves.

Watch: Bobby Ryan goes after Senators prospect for hit on MacArthur

After a local reporter said Ryan did the right thing, a fan retorted, causing Ryan to jump into the conversation and say his peace.

There's no word on whether MacArthur will be able to return to training camp or even suit up in the regular season, while Sieloff's tenure with the club is likely over as quick as it started.

Ryan, however, surely earned some points in the locker room for his reaction, even if not every fan gets it.

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Halak in vintage form at World Cup, setting up final showdown with Price

Jaroslav Halak wasn't supposed to be between Europe's pipes at the World Cup of Hockey.

In a way, the international tournament was going to be Frederik Andersen's formal introduction to Toronto after the hometown Maple Leafs acquired the goalie in a trade with Anaheim earlier in the summer.

Plans change, though, and Halak was pressed into duty for the makeshift European squad after Andersen was injured in an Olympic qualifying match days before the World Cup was set to begin.

As he's been prone to do in stretches over the course of his career, Halak's played at the highest of performance levels since the beginning of the group stage - leading to, as fate would have it, a best-of-three final against Canada following a semifinal win over Sweden in which he stopped 37-of-39 shots against.

The goalie at the other end of the ice in the final? None other than former Montreal Canadiens teammate Carey Price, the goalie on whom the most storied franchise in hockey banked their future, despite Halak's play during Montreal's borderline miracle run to the Eastern Conference finals in 2010.

The matchup likely won't be lost on the goalies, says Canadian general manager Doug Armstrong, who was happy to trade for Halak as general manager of the St. Louis Blues back in 2010.

It's fitting, seeing as Halak and Price have posted the most impressive numbers of all the World Cup starters.

Player Games Shots Against Saves Save % GAA
Carey Price 3 97 92 .948 1.67
Jaroslav Halak 4 150 142 .947 1.96

Halak's role in Europe's success at the tournament can't be overstated, head coach Ralph Krueger told reporters after the win over Sweden.

"(Halak) has been just an absolute leader in the room. Everybody wants to play for him," Krueger said. "From day one he grabbed the ball. We had an open competition to start out with, and when Andersen fell away, Jaro just smoothly stepped in and grabbed the ball, and he hasn't dropped it or let anybody else take it.

"I think his personality, his experience also from the past with Slovakia and in the National Hockey League, has helped us. He's been outstanding. He's been absolutely fantastic. Everybody in this room knows we wouldn't be here without fabulous goaltending, and a world-class performance by Jaro Halak has helped us a lot."

Canada against Europe isn't the final many expected, but the Halak versus Price angle is a compelling storyline, to say the least.

Halak wasn't able to take Montreal all the way in 2010, ultimately losing to Philadelphia, and wasn't deemed worthy enough to keep over Price - rightfully so, in retrospect.

Canada's current prime minister didn't think so at the time, however.

The opportunity is now before Halak to get a last laugh, of sorts, and if Europe has any chance of beating Canada, he'll have to be as good as he's ever been.

We can't help but wonder who Trudeau will be backing this time around.

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Gordie Howe’s ashes laid to rest beneath Saskatoon statue

Gordie Howe is home.

The hockey legend's ashes were laid to rest at the base of a statue erected in his honor outside the SaskTel Centre - home of the WHL's Blades - on Sunday.

It was Howe's dying wish to have his ashes, along with wife Colleen's, in his hometown.

The ceremony was attended by the entire Howe family.

Sunday was dubbed 'Thank You Mr. Hockey Day' and also included a visit to Howe's childhood home and school, followed by a a special pregame ceremony at the Blades' home opener.

Howe passed away on June 10 at age 88.

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Subban signs Weber Predators jersey

What should one do with the jersey of a player who's been traded?

Have it signed by the player he was traded for, of course.

That's what a Nashville Predators fan appears to have done Sunday, as P.K. Subban was seen signing an old Shea Weber jersey.

A true collector's item.

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Remember, we are all Canucks!