Buffalo Sabres restricted free agent Tim Kennedy won a $1 million reward in arbitration today according to the NHLPA. The amount is significant because according to the Collective Bargaining Agreement and confirmed by NHL super agent Allan Walsh, the amount needed for a team to walk away from an arbitration award is $1,570,260. This means that Kennedy is back with the Sabres whether they want to keep him or not and if they wish to move him it’ll have to be through a trade.
The amount makes it a significant raise for the young forward. Last season Kennedy made $625,000 while putting up 10 goals and 16 assists and 50 penalty minutes in 78 games for the Sabres. If you asked me, keeping him at $625,000 would’ve been about the right thing to do, but there’s probably a good reason why I’m not an arbitrator. Paying a million dollars for a forward that contributes 26 points in a season seems like a tremendous overpayment and sets a terrifying precedent for teams involved in other arbitration cases this year. After all, if Kennedy is worth a million, who’s to say what someone else with larger numbers won’t get an even scarier raise.
Then again, this might just be the norm for the year. After all, if Clarke MacArthur was able to win $2.4 million in arbitration (which the Thrashers walked away from), perhaps all of our views are skewed as to how this process actually works.
Following his stunning 41-game suspension, it looks like Raffi Torres has at least one former teammate in his corner.
We haven’t yet seen how the San Jose Sharks or the NHLPA are reacting to the league’s hammer-dropping decision to punish Torres for his Torres-like hit on Jakob Silfverberg, but Jason Demers decided to put in a good word for Torres tonight.
It was a simple message: “#FreeTorres.”
Demers, now of the Dallas Stars, was once with Torres and the Sharks. (In case this post’s main image didn’t make that clear enough already.)
Perhaps this will become “a thing” at some point.
So far, it seems like it’s instead “a thing (that people are making fun of).”
… You get the idea.
The bottom line is that there are some who either a) blindly support Torres because they’re Sharks fans or b) simply think that the punishment was excessive.
The most important statement came from the Department of Player Safety, though.
Those who feel as though the Boston Bruins may rebound – John Tortorella, maybe? – likely rest some of their optimism on the back of a healthy Zdeno Chara.
It’s possible that he’s merely limping into what may otherwise be a healthy 2015-16 season, but it’s definitely looking like a slow start thanks to a lower-body injury.
The latest sign of a bumpy beginning came on Monday, as several onlookers (including CSNNE.com’s Joe Haggerty) pointed out that Chara was listed on injured reserve.
As Haggerty notes, that move is retroactive to Sept. 24, so his status really just opens up options for the Bruins.
Still … it’s a little unsettling, isn’t it?
The Bruins likely realize that they need to transition away from their generational behemoth, but last season provided a stark suggestion that may not be ready yet. Trading Dougie Hamilton and losing Dennis Seidenberg to injury only make them more dependent on the towering 38-year-old.
This isn’t really something to panic about, yet it might leave a few extra seats open on the Bruins’ bandwagon.