Wild to retire Mikko Koivu’s number in March

The Minnesota Wild will raise Mikko Koivu's No. 9 to the rafters on March 13.

Koivu, the team's longtime captain and all-time points leader, will be the first player in franchise history to have his jersey retired.

The 38-year-old ended his career in February as a member of the Columbus Blue Jackets after signing with them for his final campaign. Before that, he played 15 seasons with the Wild, wearing the "C" on a full-time basis for 11 of them after serving as a co-captain in 2008-09.

Koivu is also Minnesota's all-time leader in games played (1,028) and assists (504) in addition to having produced a club-best 709 points. He represented Finland 14 times, captaining the country's World Cup of Hockey squad in 2016.

The Wild drafted him sixth overall in 2001.

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Stanley Cup odds update: Teams to buy, sell in futures market

It's the beginning of a new week and you know what that means: futures update!

We're looking at Stanley Cup odds today, identifying the teams we should be buying and selling based on what we've seen thus far. Let's dive right in.

TEAM ODDS (Nov. 29) ODDS (Nov. 1)
Colorado Avalanche +625 +550
Florida Panthers +850 +900
Tampa Bay Lightning +850 +800
Vegas Golden Knights +900 +1000
Toronto Maple Leafs +1100 +900
Carolina Hurricanes +1200 +1000
Edmonton Oilers +1200 +1400
Boston Bruins +1400 +1400
Minnesota Wild +1400 +1800
Washington Capitals +2000 +2700
New York Islanders +2200 +1800
Calgary Flames +2400 +5500
St. Louis Blues +2400 +2800
New York Rangers +2500 +3000
Pittsburgh Penguins +2800 +2400
Winnipeg Jets +3000 +5000
Dallas Stars +3500 +3500
Philadelphia Flyers +4000 +5500
Nashville Predators +5500 +10000
Los Angeles Kings +6000 +10000
New Jersey Devils +6000 +5000
San Jose Sharks +7000 +6000
Anaheim Ducks +7500 +30000
Chicago Blackhawks +10000 +8000
Columbus Blue Jackets +10000 +20000
Detroit Red Wings +10000 +11500
Montreal Canadiens +10000 +8000
Seattle Kraken +10000  +7000
Vancouver Canucks +10000 +8000
Buffalo Sabres +15000 +30000
Ottawa Senators +15000 +15000
Arizona Coyotes +50000 +30000

Buy

Toronto Maple Leafs (+1100)

I know, I know, the Maple Leafs need to get out of the first round before we start talking about the Stanley Cup. Nobody is buying into them until they prove it ... but that might be part of the reason we have an edge here.

The Maple Leafs rank second in the NHL with a 55.20% share of the expected goals at five-on-five. They lead the league in high-danger chances (252) by a landslide, sitting 35 clear of the closest team. Their power play is really clicking, and Jack Campbell has played at an elite level.

Toronto looks strong across the board, and that's with Auston Matthews finishing at about half the rate he has for his career. There's reason to believe he can produce a lot more, which is a scary thought when talking about a club with 14 wins in 16 games.

Really, this team's only red flag is its history. If, say, Vegas dominated at five-on-five to this extent, led the league in Grade A chances by a country mile, and had a starter with a .946 save percentage, the Golden Knights would be talked about as a force.

Toronto's reputation seems to have led the market to undervalue this year's edition of the Maple Leafs - which really looks like the best yet.

Minnesota Wild (+1400)

Speaking of undervalued, meet the Minnesota Wild. Only three teams have more wins to date. Only three teams have controlled a larger share of the expected goals at five-on-five. The Wild rank second in goals scored during that game state, and only the Bruins, Lightning, and Kraken have done a better job of suppressing expected goals. Put another way, Minnesota is lethal with the puck and suffocating without it.

Although the Wild have piled up the the wins and own a strong underlying profile, they're deemed ninth-most likely to win the Stanley Cup. I think that's too low, especially considering they're likely to go all-in on this year's team given the cap penalties that kick in next year from buying out Ryan Suter and Zach Parise.

Sell

New York Islanders (+2200)

The Islanders currently sit 15th ... in the Eastern Conference. They've won five of their 17 games. The offense looks lifeless, they're dealing with injuries to key players such as Brock Nelson and Ryan Pulock, and COVID-19 is absolutely tearing through the roster.

Sure, they have a ton of home games coming up. But this team will be hard-pressed to crawl out of its early-season hole and make the playoffs, let alone make noise once it gets there.

I doubt the Islanders will fold like a tent and go quietly. But more than 20% through the season, a team 30th in points is priced as the 10th-most likely side to win the Stanley Cup. This Islanders team might finally be getting too much respect.

New York Rangers (+2500)

The Sabres, Senators, Flyers, Coyotes, and Blackhawks are the only teams controlling a lesser share of the expected goals than the Rangers at five-on-five.

While they have looked a little more potent of late, I simply can't buy a team routinely getting outplayed at full strength when the vast majority of every contest is played in that game state. And the refs tend to put the whistles away in the postseason, placing an even larger premium on success at five-on-five.

Igor Shesterkin, Artemi Panarin, and Adam Fox are all among the truly elite at their positions. However, there just isn't enough competent depth around them to make me a believer come playoff time.

Todd Cordell is a sports betting writer at theScore. Be sure to follow him on Twitter @ToddCordell.

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NHL Monday best bets: Squid games

We have just four games on the docket to start the week, and they're rather ugly. Five of the bottom eight teams in the NHL are in action, and only one game features two competitive teams (Calgary Flames versus Pittsburgh Penguins).

Still, there's value to be had. Let's comb through it.

Kraken (-140) at Sabres (+120)

Remember when the Buffalo Sabres were competent to start the year? Those days have long passed. Buffalo dropped five of its last six games and ranks 28th in expected goal share at five-on-five in the last 10 games. The Sabres are playing terrible hockey.

One of their biggest issues right now is generating offense. The Sabres are averaging 1.78 expected goals per 60 minutes in the last 10 games, good for 30th in the NHL.

It just so happens that the Seattle Kraken's bread and butter is suppressing opposing offenses. They've allowed 1.99 xG per 60 in the last 10, putting them just 0.01 behind the Tampa Bay Lightning and Calgary Flames for the best mark during that period.

They're making life easy on their goaltenders, which is probably why the Kraken have gotten quality starts from their netminder in three of the last four games.

Though the Kraken have performed better at home, they have a clear edge at five-on-five and should be able to suffocate Buffalo's rather lifeless attack.

I'd like the Kraken more if Aaron Dell started, but Dustin Tokarski playing for the third time in four nights is an advantageous spot, as well.

Bet: Kraken (-140)

Canucks (+105) at Canadiens (-125)

The Vancouver Canucks have won one of their last 10 games, and sweeping changes within the organization seem imminent. Backing them is a scary thought, I know, but I see value on this line.

For all of their faults, the Canucks haven't played that bad during this stretch. Their expected goal share is around 50% - sandwiching them between the Nashville Predators and New York Islanders - and they rank in the top 10 in Corsi For percentage at five-on-five.

Meanwhile, the Montreal Canadiens sit 25th in Corsi share and 29th in xG share during that same period. They've been particularly disastrous in their own zone, giving up 2.85 xG per 60 - more than all but the Philadelphia Flyers. They're horrendous at five-on-five, and their special teams are just as bad.

Factor in Vancouver's edge in goal - Thatcher Demko is one of the better young netminders in the league - and, even on the road, I think the wrong team is favored here.

Bet: Canucks (+105)

Todd Cordell is a sports betting writer at theScore. Be sure to follow him on Twitter @ToddCordell.

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Grading 5 of Bergevin’s biggest moves during Canadiens tenure

Marc Bergevin's time with the Montreal Canadiens has come to an end following nearly 10 years. After taking over as the general manager of the illustrious franchise in May 2012, he became one of the NHL's most active executives.

Montreal had a roller coaster of success and failure during his time, making the playoffs six times while reaching the Stanley Cup Final once and the Eastern Conference Final twice. Bergevin certainly made a number of massive moves to try to improve the Habs during his time at the helm, but he wasn't able to piece everything together to form a championship roster.

With the Canadiens set to usher in a new era under newly hired vice president of hockey operations Jeff Gorton, let's take a look back at five of Bergevin's franchise-altering moves during his tenure.

Dealing Subban for Weber

Bruce Bennett / Getty Images Sport / Getty

There were rumblings at the time that the relationship between P.K. Subban and the Canadiens organization wasn't great, but trading one of the most popular players the franchise had in years still seemed like a long shot. Not only was Subban electric on the ice, but fans adored him.

In June 2016, moments after the shocking Taylor Hall-for-Adam Larsson trade, it was announced that the Canadiens dealt Subban to the Nashville Predators for Shea Weber. Similar to Subban in Montreal, Weber was the face of the franchise in Nashville and a true legend of the team. The deal sent shockwaves throughout the NHL, receiving mixed feedback.

To this day, people still debate who won the trade. Ultimately, it seemed to work out pretty well for both sides. Subban played an integral role in Nashville during his first season en route to a Stanley Cup Final appearance. The Canadiens got their future captain and one of the league's most respected veterans. Fast forward to today, and Subban is no longer the dominant Norris Trophy-caliber defenseman he once was, while Weber is on the verge of retirement due to injury.

It's fair to say Bergevin took a massive gamble and came away a winner. The fanbase was shocked at first but quickly welcomed and adored Weber. He anchored the blue line over the last five seasons and did everything that was asked of him. You can't ask for much more than that.

Grade: B+

Moving on from Pacioretty

Christopher Pasatieri / National Hockey League / Getty

This surely had to be one of the toughest moves of Bergevin's tenure. Max Pacioretty was a fan favorite and one of the most consistent goal scorers the club had seen in decades. Shortly after being named captain in 2015, things seemed to sour between Pacioretty and the organization, which ultimately led to him being traded.

Bergevin undoubtedly hit a home run on this one. Getting Nick Suzuki - who's quickly developing into a legitimate No. 1 center - along with Tomas Tatar and a second-round pick from the Vegas Golden Knights was a fantastic haul. It also worked out for the Golden Knights, as Pacioretty has continued to dominate.

One thing that we've learned over the last decade is that Bergevin isn't scared to make a big trade or shake things up. Making this deal got the Canadiens the franchise center they'd been looking for forever and put the team in a much better position to be competitive for years to come.

Grade: A

Breaking the bank for Price

Icon Sportswire / Icon Sportswire / Getty

The Canadiens have taken a lot of flack ever since they signed Carey Price to his hefty contract. With an annual cap hit of $10.5 million, he still remains the league's highest-paid goalie. Bergevin isn't to blame for this one, though. His hands were tied, and if he didn't sign Price at the time, another team surely would've backed up the Brinks truck.

Price was the nearly undisputed best goalie in the world when he signed in 2017. As he just showed with his performance last postseason, he's arguably still in the running for that title. Price followed up his dominant 2014-15 Hart Trophy-winning campaign with two more great seasons, so Montreal signing him to an eight-year, $84-million contract was inevitable.

Sure, Bergevin could've let Price walk into free agency and let another team pay him. It's impossible to say how the Habs would look today if Price signed elsewhere. But there's no doubt he has the utmost respect of his teammates and players around the league, and he's still seen as one of the top netminders in the world. The contract definitely makes Montreal's cap situation tricky, but Bergevin had to do it.

Grade: B-

Bringing Drouin back home

Minas Panagiotakis / Getty Images Sport / Getty

Jonathan Drouin wasn't happy with his role and progression in Tampa Bay after being selected third overall in 2013. Bergevin took note and didn't balk at the opportunity to bring in the Quebec native to play in his home province. The price was steep but fair: Mikhail Sergachev, who at the time was deemed a top defensive prospect but barely had any NHL experience.

Yet the move was puzzling. Sergachev, whom the Canadiens selected ninth overall in 2016, looked to be the exact piece the team desperately needed: an offensive-minded, puck-moving defenseman.

Drouin's an extremely talented forward, but he didn't address a glaring need for Montreal, and the move also dug a deeper hole on its blue line. Meanwhile, Sergachev has developed nicely in Tampa Bay, and Drouin has struggled to stay consistent. This was one of Bergevin's rare misses.

Grade: C-

Robbing Blackhawks of Danault

Icon Sportswire / Icon Sportswire / Getty

In what was probably the best move of Bergevin's time with the Canadiens, he somehow pawned off Dale Weise and Tomas Fleischmann on the Chicago Blackhawks in exchange for Phillip Danault and a second-round draft pick that was eventually used to select Alexander Romanov.

The Blackhawks didn't expect Danault to magically become a Selke-caliber two-way center when he tossed on the Canadiens sweater. Is it fair to think Bergevin knew what he was getting in him? Bergevin was the Blackhaks' assistant GM when they drafted Danault with the 26th pick in 2011.

The move couldn't have paid off more for the Canadiens. A small deadline deal that sent away two bottom-six veteran forwards earned Montreal its No. 1 shutdown center for years to come, and it also landed the team one of its top defensive prospects in Romanov. To make matters worse for Chicago, Weise and Fleischmann combined for two goals and four assists across 34 games and managed one goal in four playoff contests.

Grade: A+

Honorable mentions: Acquiring Jeff Petry from the Edmonton Oilers; trading Alex Galchenyuk for Max Domi

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Grading 5 of Bergevin’s biggest moves during Canadiens tenure

Marc Bergevin's time with the Montreal Canadiens has come to an end following nearly 10 years. After taking over as the general manager of the illustrious franchise in May 2012, he became one of the NHL's most active executives.

Montreal had a roller coaster of success and failure during his time, making the playoffs six times while reaching the Stanley Cup Final once and the Eastern Conference Final twice. Bergevin certainly made a number of massive moves to try to improve the Habs during his time at the helm, but he wasn't able to piece everything together to form a championship roster.

With the Canadiens set to usher in a new era under newly hired vice president of hockey operations Jeff Gorton, let's take a look back at five of Bergevin's franchise-altering moves during his tenure.

Dealing Subban for Weber

Bruce Bennett / Getty Images Sport / Getty

There were rumblings at the time that the relationship between P.K. Subban and the Canadiens organization wasn't great, but trading one of the most popular players the franchise had in years still seemed like a long shot. Not only was Subban electric on the ice, but fans adored him.

In June 2016, moments after the shocking Taylor Hall-for-Adam Larsson trade, it was announced that the Canadiens dealt Subban to the Nashville Predators for Shea Weber. Similar to Subban in Montreal, Weber was the face of the franchise in Nashville and a true legend of the team. The deal sent shockwaves throughout the NHL, receiving mixed feedback.

To this day, people still debate who won the trade. Ultimately, it seemed to work out pretty well for both sides. Subban played an integral role in Nashville during his first season en route to a Stanley Cup Final appearance. The Canadiens got their future captain and one of the league's most respected veterans. Fast forward to today, and Subban is no longer the dominant Norris Trophy-caliber defenseman he once was, while Weber is on the verge of retirement due to injury.

It's fair to say Bergevin took a massive gamble and came away a winner. The fanbase was shocked at first but quickly welcomed and adored Weber. He anchored the blue line over the last five seasons and did everything that was asked of him. You can't ask for much more than that.

Grade: B+

Moving on from Pacioretty

Christopher Pasatieri / National Hockey League / Getty

This surely had to be one of the toughest moves of Bergevin's tenure. Max Pacioretty was a fan favorite and one of the most consistent goal scorers the club had seen in decades. Shortly after being named captain in 2015, things seemed to sour between Pacioretty and the organization, which ultimately led to him being traded.

Bergevin undoubtedly hit a home run on this one. Getting Nick Suzuki - who's quickly developing into a legitimate No. 1 center - along with Tomas Tatar and a second-round pick from the Vegas Golden Knights was a fantastic haul. It also worked out for the Golden Knights, as Pacioretty has continued to dominate.

One thing that we've learned over the last decade is that Bergevin isn't scared to make a big trade or shake things up. Making this deal got the Canadiens the franchise center they'd been looking for forever and put the team in a much better position to be competitive for years to come.

Grade: A

Breaking the bank for Price

Icon Sportswire / Icon Sportswire / Getty

The Canadiens have taken a lot of flack ever since they signed Carey Price to his hefty contract. With an annual cap hit of $10.5 million, he still remains the league's highest-paid goalie. Bergevin isn't to blame for this one, though. His hands were tied, and if he didn't sign Price at the time, another team surely would've backed up the Brinks truck.

Price was the nearly undisputed best goalie in the world when he signed in 2017. As he just showed with his performance last postseason, he's arguably still in the running for that title. Price followed up his dominant 2014-15 Hart Trophy-winning campaign with two more great seasons, so Montreal signing him to an eight-year, $84-million contract was inevitable.

Sure, Bergevin could've let Price walk into free agency and let another team pay him. It's impossible to say how the Habs would look today if Price signed elsewhere. But there's no doubt he has the utmost respect of his teammates and players around the league, and he's still seen as one of the top netminders in the world. The contract definitely makes Montreal's cap situation tricky, but Bergevin had to do it.

Grade: B-

Bringing Drouin back home

Minas Panagiotakis / Getty Images Sport / Getty

Jonathan Drouin wasn't happy with his role and progression in Tampa Bay after being selected third overall in 2013. Bergevin took note and didn't balk at the opportunity to bring in the Quebec native to play in his home province. The price was steep but fair: Mikhail Sergachev, who at the time was deemed a top defensive prospect but barely had any NHL experience.

Yet the move was puzzling. Sergachev, whom the Canadiens selected ninth overall in 2016, looked to be the exact piece the team desperately needed: an offensive-minded, puck-moving defenseman.

Drouin's an extremely talented forward, but he didn't address a glaring need for Montreal, and the move also dug a deeper hole on its blue line. Meanwhile, Sergachev has developed nicely in Tampa Bay, and Drouin has struggled to stay consistent. This was one of Bergevin's rare misses.

Grade: C-

Robbing Blackhawks of Danault

Icon Sportswire / Icon Sportswire / Getty

In what was probably the best move of Bergevin's time with the Canadiens, he somehow pawned off Dale Weise and Tomas Fleischmann on the Chicago Blackhawks in exchange for Phillip Danault and a second-round draft pick that was eventually used to select Alexander Romanov.

The Blackhawks didn't expect Danault to magically become a Selke-caliber two-way center when he tossed on the Canadiens sweater. Is it fair to think Bergevin knew what he was getting in him? Bergevin was the Blackhaks' assistant GM when they drafted Danault with the 26th pick in 2011.

The move couldn't have paid off more for the Canadiens. A small deadline deal that sent away two bottom-six veteran forwards earned Montreal its No. 1 shutdown center for years to come, and it also landed the team one of its top defensive prospects in Romanov. To make matters worse for Chicago, Weise and Fleischmann combined for two goals and four assists across 34 games and managed one goal in four playoff contests.

Grade: A+

Honorable mentions: Acquiring Jeff Petry from the Edmonton Oilers; trading Alex Galchenyuk for Max Domi

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Report: Fenway Sports Group signs agreement to purchase Penguins

Fenway Sports Group LLC, owners of the Boston Red Sox and Liverpool, have signed an agreement to purchase the Pittsburgh Penguins, reports Michael Silverman of the Boston Globe.

The purchase price is currently unknown, and the NHL still needs to approve the deal before it's official.

Pittsburgh's previous owners, Ron Burkle and Mario Lemieux, will reportedly remain part of the ownership group, and the Penguins' senior management team will stay in place.

Burkle and Lemieux have owned the Penguins since 1999, saving the franchise from bankruptcy and overseeing three Stanley Cups from 2009-17.

Fenway Sports Group reportedly sought a merger with Maple Leafs Sports and Entertainment before pursuing Pittsburgh, but the Toronto-based conglomerate wasn't interested.

The Penguins were valued at $845 million in October, the 15th-highest total in the NHL, according to Sportico.

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Canadiens fire Bergevin, name Jeff Gorton executive VP of hockey ops

The Montreal Canadiens overhauled their front office Sunday, firing general manager Marc Bergevin, assistant GM Trevor Timmins, and senior vice president of public affairs and communications Paul Wilson.

The Canadiens also named former New York Rangers general manager Jeff Gorton executive vice president of hockey operations.

Montreal has begun its search for a new GM; the team stated Bergevin's successor must be able to speak both English and French.

The 56-year-old said Sunday he's proud of what he accomplished during his tenure with the organization and expects the underachieving club to be in good hands going forward.

"The current team is much better than the results show, and I am convinced that my successors will be able to rise to the challenge," he wrote in a statement.

Bergevin had served as the Canadiens' GM since May 2012. The club made the playoffs in six of his nine subsequent full seasons, reaching the Stanley Cup Final last campaign and making an Eastern Conference Final appearance in 2013-14.

However, Montreal has struggled mightily in 2021-22, posting a 6-15-2 record that placed the team second-last in the Atlantic Division entering Sunday's action. Canadiens captain Shea Weber has missed the entire season due to injury and goaltender Carey Price has been away from the team after voluntarily entering the NHL's player assistance program before the campaign began.

Bergevin made several blockbuster moves during his tenure, including trading defenseman P.K. Subban to the Nashville Predators for Weber in June 2016. Bergevin joined Montreal after serving as assistant GM of the Chicago Blackhawks.

The Rangers unexpectedly fired Gorton along with team president John Davidson in May. The latter returned to his former role as the Columbus Blue Jackets president of hockey operations.

New York hired Gorton as GM on July 1, 2015. The Rangers reached the postseason in three of his six years in the position but failed to get past the second round in that span.

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