Puck Drop: The NHL is All In, Matthews Is Out

By: Whitney Carroll McKinnon
Posted: October 29, 2018

Breaking news in the world of legal gambling: the NHL has claimed a seat at the table.

The NHL has announced a multiyear partnership with Las Vegas-based MGM Resorts International, during which the league will provide MGM with data for the purposes of oddsmaking and betting.

While specifics of the deal are still largely up in the air, some of the information shared with MGM may include details like puck and player tracking data. A testing phase will be put in effect before any permanent decisions are made.

This makes the NHL the latest professional sports league to partner up with MGM, joining the NBA and the WNBA (both of whom signed deals with the resort consortium in July). Though the NHL will likely receive a hefty chunk of change from the deal, they won’t be getting a cut of any gambling-related profits. Instead, the deal includes an undisclosed fixed payment.

This move is made in the wake of the Supreme Court’s 2018 ruling that states may legalize sports betting at their own discretion.

Injury Report

All is not well in the Land of the Leafs. Toronto’s phenom playmaker Auston Matthews suffered an injury during Saturday’s matchup against Winnipeg, and the prognosis isn’t great for the young star.

Matthews, who began the day as the NHL’s top goal scorer, remains in rough shape after taking a solid hit to the left shoulder from Winnipeg defenseman Jacob Trouba.

Check out the hit below.

Though we don’t know the details of the injury, it’s clear that Matthews will be missing a serious chunk of time. He has been placed on injured reserve and looks to be out of the lineup for a minimum of four weeks.

Vancouver defenseman Alex Edler will also be sitting on the sidelines for a while, after suffering a knee injury at the hands of the Vegas Golden Knights on October 24th. Edler is scheduled for an MRI, and according to head coach Travis Green, is expected to be out for “weeks.”

Cory Schneider is officially back on the New Jersey Devils’ active roster, and coach John Hynes is going to be faced with some difficult choices. Keith Kinkaid has been tending the twine in Schneider’s absence, and has a stellar .925 save percentage to show for his efforts. Though time will tell who ends up manning the crease full time, Kinkaid is scheduled to start when the Devils take to the ice against the Lightning on Tuesday.

Play of the Period

I’ve got two plays to show you this week, because I love me some filthy puckhandling.

First off, check out Sidney Crosby’s moves against the Oilers. Sid the Kid’s backhand game continues to be freakishly on point.

Speaking of slick moves, plays like this one are the reason why Brad Marchand has a place in any conversation about the game’s elite players.

Image credit: Denver Post

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