I’ll bet you thought that all the free agents were signed, right? Well, there are a few stragglers left.
Emma and I were thrilled to learn that Brad Marchand FINALLY signed a 2-year, $5 million contract extension with the Boston Bruins. John Tavares signed a six-year deal that will keep him with the New York Islanders. And (sadly) Zach Bogosian signed a deal with the Winnipeg Jets that’s similar to Marchmont’s.
It’s when training camp looms and extensions aren’t signed that fans and front offices get antsy, and Marchmont, Tavares and Bogosian sure took it down to the wire. But there are three other guys who have yet to sign a deal:
Luke Schenn: Luke has the potential to be a top defenseman for the Maple Leafs, and the Toronto Sun is hinting that a deal could be in place by the weekend. So what’s the holdup? Whatever it is, it’s close to being resolved.
Drew Doughty: This is the RFA that everyone’s been talking about this summer. The big sticking points are length and cost of the contract – the Los Angeles Kings reportedly won’t take anything less than a long-term deal that must be lower per year than the $6.8 million per year Anze Kopitar is making. So far, no one’s budging.
Tyler Myers: Like Schenn, Tyler is also expected to sign soon, and his deal with the Buffalo Sabres is probably going to be a long-term one, so sayeth ESPN’s Pierre LeBrun. That would rank him right up there with Thomas Vaneck and Ryan Miller in terms of per year pay. But the kid has tons of potential, and he’s earned it.
Then there’s Phoenix’s Kyle Turris. From what I’ve read, he and the Yotes aren’t as close to a deal as the others are – in fact, you could probably drive a retired Space Shuttle through the gap in their negotiations. I’m guessing that the fact that his performance hasn’t been on par with Patrick Kane or James van Riemsdyk, who were picked before him in the 2007 draft, could be a big factor.
The clock’s ticking. Let’s see who blinks first in this game of eleventh-hour chicken.
ETA: Well hey, Tyler just signed a 7-year extension with the Sabres! Mazel tov!