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PHT Morning Skate: Miller’s candid comments; Backstrom reaches 1,000 games

According to a report, the Canucks may not be able to return to the ice this season due to COVID-19 protocols. Patrick Sharp and Dominic Moore respect the recent candid comments made by Vancouver center J.T. Miller.

Welcome to the PHT Morning Skate, a collection of links from the NHL and around the hockey world. Have a link you want to submit for the PHT Morning Skate? Email us at phtblog@nbcsports.

• Canucks forward J.T. Miller on the team having to finish their season with 19 games in 31 days following a COVID outbreak: “To expect pretty much our entire team to be ready to play after a practice and a pregame skate is a little bit hard to comprehend. For guys coming off of three weeks of rest, two weeks of having COVID, one practice isn’t even close to near enough time to come back and perform at a high level.” [Pass it to Bulis]

• After Miller spoke with the media, Canucks players had a Zoom call with the NHLPA. Will the players’ concerns result in change? [Sportsnet]

• Philipp Grubauer’s positive COVID-19 test will put him out of the Avalanche lineup for at least the next two weeks. []

• Nicklas Backstrom will join Alex Ovechkin Thursday night in the 1,000-game club with the Capitals. [NBC Sports Washington]

• Conor Sheary has a signed a two-year, $3M extension with the Capitals. The forward has 11 goals and 19 points in 40 games this seasons. [NoVaCaps]

• Kings GM Rob Blake on the Jeff Carter trade and extending Alex Iafallo. [Mayor’s Manor]

• “Development on the city’s new event centre, which is expected to be the new home of the Calgary Flames, has been paused over a discrepancy over the budget for the project.” [CTV News]

• Bill Guerin’s goal for his Wild this postseason? To “make some noise.” [Hockey Wilderness]

• The Sabres have hired Jason Karmanos as associate GM. He will oversee the AHL team in Rochester, along with scouting, player development and the team’s analytics departments. [Sabres]

• There’s a youth movement afoot in Nashville. [A to Z Sports Nashville]


Sean Leahy is a writer for Pro Hockey Talk on NBC Sports. Drop him a line at or follow him on Twitter @Sean_Leahy