The NHL kicks-off pre-season September 15th with an exciting match-up between the... (checks notes)

Arizona Coyotes and Vegas Golden Knights.

Huh. How about that.

They might at least have Phil Kessel in that game. It will certainly be a jarring visual to see him in a Coyotes jersey. However, it’s pre-season, so maybe he won’t be playing. In any case, that ‘marquee event’ will be the first of many pre-season games to be played on NHL ice over that week.

Toronto Maple Leafs announce 2019 preseason schedule

So will Mitchell Marner be there? Insiders aren’t sure, and the volume of talk about him has died down, finally drowned out by the fact a host of other well known players with Restricted Free Agent Status aren’t signing either; Patrik Laine being the most notable one to get very little media attention.

The Maple Leafs have their training camp in St. John’s Newfoundland starting on September 13th. I hope some arrive on The Rock earlier and we get to see clips of them enjoying a night of fried cod tongues and screech before the serious business of hockey begins. Their first pre-season game will be played at 5:30 p.m. Eastern Time—that’s 7:00 in Newfoundland—on September 17. There’s your ‘first deadline’, Mitch.

Before all that happens there is another event for the Leafs’ prospects. They head to Traverse City Michigan in three weeks time for the 2019 NHL Prospect Tournament where they will play against seven other teams for the Matthew Wuest Memorial Cup.

2019 NHL Prospect Tournament returns to Traverse City

It’s all a sign the off-season is rapidly coming to a close, and that there are fewer days of summer ahead than behind.

Enjoy while it lasts!


Speaking of the Leafs’ prospects, we’re revealing the player ranked at #13 today in our Top 25 Under 25 today at 8:00 a.m. UPDATE: It’s Nic Petan!

Top 25 Under 25: Nic Petan is lucky #13
Top 25 Under 25: Ilya Mikheyev arrives at #14
Top 25 Under 25: Mac Hollowell grabs #15 after a great season

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Camps are over, teams are set, the U-22 and U-18 national teams start a three-game series today.

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