Another day slips by without an announcement of a new contract for Brayden Point. We’re not at the point of panic yet, after all we’re not Maple Leaf fans. There is plenty of summer left for him to work out a deal with the Lightning. From the limited amount of information that’s trickled out, both sides want to get this deal done.
Things are just complicated on both ends. The Lightning have to fit his salary not only into this season’s cap, but also future salary caps while leaving enough wiggle room for decent contacts for other players. For Point, this is the first opportunity he has to really cash in. Does he want to go long term and secure his future or is it better to go short term and see what the landscape looks like with a new CBA and TV deal?
Training camp is still almost two months away. If he’s not signed by then, you have our permission to start worrying. Until then, relax, enjoy a cold beverage, and check out what’s happening around the hockey world.
I guess this could go under the Prospects section, but since there isn’t much news about the team, we’ll put it here. The organization has a couple of players (Nolan Foote and Gabriel Fortier) that will be participating in the upcoming World Junior Summer Showcase [Raw Charge]
This will be Foote’s only opportunity to make Canada’s World Junior team (despite being a late-2000 birthday, he’s still in his final year of tournament eligibility). His past experience playing for Canada will be a factor, but Foote will have to prove that he can make more of an impact at the international stage, and having a larger offensive presence at the showcase will increase his chances to make the final team.
Sticking with the prospects as Lightning theme, Elite Prospects takes an in depth look at recent draft pick Hugo Alnfelt [EP Rinkside]
On the positive, Alnefelt’s ability to never give up on plays displays high competitiveness. He will always do his utmost to stop the puck — even when it seems like he is beaten. He also competes well on loose pucks in front of him when he is in position to do so and never gives off a vibe of dejection when things don’t go his way.
Gabriel Fortier most likely has one more season in the QMJHL, but that doesn’t mean he didn’t learn anything during his short stay in Syracuse at the end of last season. [NHL.com]
“It was really good for me to play with Syracuse and get a taste of what I need to do to improve my game [this] season to make the step,” he said. “Everybody says that it’s faster and the guys are bigger, but to hear it and then play against it, it was a really big difference. It was good to see with my own eyes.”
One sign that it’s getting closer to actual hockey time? The Syracuse Crunch Media Street Hockey Game is about to be played. [Twitter]
Orlando brings back a familiar face. [Twitter]
BREAKING: We're bringing back defenseman Kevin Lohan for the 2019-20 season! https://t.co/4vyHD6GkhE— Orlando Solar Bears (@OrlandoHockey) July 25, 2019
The Leafs and the Blues made a trade. Roughly 89% of the hockey world thought Toronto had turned Andreas Borgman into Jaden Schwartz. Alas, it was Jordan Schmaltz, a 26-year-old, right-shooting defenseman that the Stanley Cup champions sent to Toronto. [Pension Plan Puppets]
The Leafs, and Hakstol, might see Schmaltz as a more likely proposition on the third pair as a player that has a good AHL resume that he hasn’t been able to translate into the NHL. St. Louis is stacked on the right side at the top end, and they seem to like Robert Bortuzzo on the bottom end
Speaking of the Leafs, I’m sure this article went over well [Editor in Leaf]
As we saw with William Nylander last season and David Pastrnak the year before that, star players and teams are having a difficult time reaching deals prior to the start of training camp. One option for RFA players is to leverage a KHL offer into an NHL contract. Rumour has it that Mikko Rantanen has such an offer.
It’s getting to be that time of the summer where teams need to clear some cap space in order to get their remaining RFAs under contract. The Pittsburgh Penguins are one of those teams that’s up against the cap limit with a few more players left unsigned. So who could be on the trading block? [Pensburgh]
The big wild card in this mix is Jack Johnson. He was the team’s worst performing defenseman, he’s not worth keeping, gotsta go situation. The whole key to what happens next, in a great world, is finding a way to ticket him out of ‘tahn’.
Flipping to the other side of Pennsylvania, a certain mascot paid tribute to some of Philadelphia’s other legends. The Rocky and Betsy Ross photos will get all of the press, but for my money the Hall and Oates picture is pure art. [Philadelphia Magazine]
From the moment you burst out onto that stage with such childlike joy and that google in your eye(s), I just knew. I would be forever changed. In ma heart and ma soul, I feel complete, now that you’re you.
ESPN argues with themselves whether or not the St. Louis Blues will repeat as Stanley Cup Champs. Personally, we hope that they don’t. [ESPN]
The Blues won’t repeat because the West is a meat grinder. Matt Duchene is in Nashville. Joe Pavelski is in Dallas. Nazem Kadri is in Colorado. Phil Kessel is in Arizona. Vegas is Vegas. Calgary is Calgary The Sharks are, for the most part, still the Sharks. The Jets aren’t the same Jets, but still dangerous. Good luck, St. Louis.