According to Aaron Portzline, the Columbus Blue Jackets are still not close to signing a deal with Ryan Johansen. However, he believes that a deal is coming soon. He tweeted:
The Jackets need to be careful that they don’t scare Johansen away. Their team is not a traditional market and they cannot afford to lose talent due to low ball contract offers. Unless Johansen has explicitly said that he wants to leave the team, they need to give him what he wants if they want to try and keep a major piece of their core, both now and going into the future.
The Edmonton Oilers and defenseman Justin Schultz have finally come to an agreement, signing a one-year deal worth $3.65 million.
Schultz, 24, tallied 11 goals and 22 assists in 74 games last season with the Oilers. The offensively-gifted defenseman joined Edmonton as an unrestricted free agent in 2012 after he decided against signing with the Anaheim Ducks, the team that had drafted him originally.
Schultz has a ton of upside and should continue to improve, especially with the offseason additions of Mark Fayne and Nikita Nikitin which will provide defensive depth and ultimately allow Schultz to focus on creating opportunities from the back-end.
Scott Gomez will be attending Devils’ training camp on a try-out basis. Gomez played with the Devils from 1999 to 2007 before signing with the Rangers and eventually going to Montreal in the Ryan McDonagh trade. He played last season with the Panthers, 2 goals and 10 assists in 46 games.
Tom Gulitti reports that Tomas Kaberle may also attend Devils training camp as an invite, as he’s currently in talks with the Devils to do just that.
Despite recent rumors, UFA forward Dustin Penner has not and will not be offered a tryout with the Philadelphia Flyers according to GM Ron Hextall.
Penner, 31, split time last season between the Anaheim Ducks and the Washington Capitals where he struggled finding any consistency after being acquired from Anaheim at the trade deadline.
Penner is relatively young but may lack the speed and consistency needed to be a regular NHL player. It will be interesting to see how his situation plays out, but I wouldn’t be surprised if the power forward does get offered a tryout by a team in desperate need of adding size to their lineup.
Don Brennan of the Ottawa Sun has reported that defenceman Marc Methot is interested in staying with the team, despite rumors that suggested he was clashing with coach Paul MacLean and his system.
“Things have been very professional, and we’re just trying to sort it out,” said Methot. “I’m in a new position now. I’ve never been through this. It’s a new experience for me, being a pending UFA.”
“I do love being an Ottawa Senator, because I grew up here watching the team,” he said. “It’s an honor to be able to play in your home city. It’s a privilege.”
It is highly likely Methot would like to stay with the team because he is from the city. However, if he believes that he can cash in on the open market, than it is possible that he will bolt as the Senators are currently struggling financially due to the incompetent ownership of Eugene Melynk.
Detroit Red Wing’s coach, Mike Babcock recently made an offer to Nicklas Lidstrom that would have seen him become an assistant coach for the team. Lidstrom rejected the offer, but admitted that it is something that he would consider in the future once his children are a little bit older.
“We’re doing well here in Sweden after the move, and the children are thriving in school, so it never occurred to me to move back,” said Lidstrom. ”You should never say never. We’ll see how we feel when we’ve been home for a few more years.”
Goaltender Craig Anderson has re-signed a three-year contract extension with the Ottawa Senators. The deal is reportedly worth $12.6 million.
Anderson, 33, still has one year left at $3.19 million on a four-year deal he signed with the Senators prior to the 2011-12 season.
Anderson has posted strong numbers while in Ottawa and has been the team’s starting goaltender since coming over via trade from Colorado, but has struggled staying healthy, missing nearly 40 games due to injury during his tenure with the Senators.
According to Michael Traikos of the National Post, defenseman Tomas Kaberle has a tryout offer from an undisclosed NHL team.
Kaberle, 36, confirmed the offer is outside of Ontario, ruling out the Ottawa Senators and Toronto Maple Leafs. The offensive-minded defenseman played in his home country of the Czech Republic last year and was an Olympian in Sochi.
Despite teams like the Detroit Red Wings and Dallas Stars who could use a right-handed shot from the point, Kaberle’s chances of landing an NHL gig are slim. He’s noticeably slower and was regularly scratched from the lineup during his final NHL season with the Montreal Canadiens.