T.J. Oshie’s past season was one that saw him struggle with injuries and with keeping appointments with his team. Luckily for him, the St. Louis Blues still like his play and they want to see if he can grow up a little bit more and while he was set to become a restricted free agent this summer, they’re not letting him get away just yet.
St. Louis signed Oshie to a one-year contract worth $2.35 million to bring him back in to play his brand of game at center for the Blues. When Oshie is on, he’s got the ability to score points as well as defend well against opposing top centers. As a 24 year-old he’s ideally a rising star in the league. Working against him in that department is how he struggled a bit off the ice culminating in a moment where he didn’t show up for a mandatory team practice.
Oshie was benched by the Blues for two games following that unexcused absence and it made some question just how dedicated to hockey he was. The Blues and GM Doug Armstrong giving a hopeful young player just a one year deal like this smacks of it being a “prove your worth” type of deal for Oshie.
Oshie was poised for a breakout season last year before injury slowed him down holding him to playing in just 49 games last season. He finished the year with 12 goals and 20 assists and is capable of much more than that. If he can keep himself focused on the game, he’ll get the long term deal he’s looking for to seal up his future. If he can’t do that though… He’ll become someone else’s rescue project.
It seems there will be no NHL comeback attempt by Alex Semin. At least not in 2016-17.
Instead, Semin has inked a one-year extension with Magnitogorsk Metallurg, according to Sport-Express writer Igor Eronko.
At 32 years old, Semin still could have a lot of years left in him as a professional hockey player, but at this point it wouldn’t be surprising if he has played in his last NHL game. Early in his career his talent was clear and demonstrated by some great showings offensively, but he was plagued by inconsistency. In recent years though, he wasn’t so much inconsistent as he was underwhelming.
After being limited to six goals and 19 points in 57 games with Carolina in 2014-15, the one-time 40-goal scorer was bought out of his five-year, $35 million contract just two seasons into it. Montreal took a chance on him for 2015-16, but he only appeared in 15 games with the Canadiens before they put him on unconditional waivers on Dec. 9.
He’s fared better in the KHL though, with five goals and 14 points in 20 regular season games followed by another seven markers and 15 points in 23 playoff contests.
PHT’s Morning Skate takes a look around the world of hockey to see what’s happening and what we’ll be talking about around the NHL world and beyond.
Among the 21 NHL.com and NHL Network experts offering their prediction for the Stanley Cup Final, 17 of them are choosing the San Jose Sharks. (NHL.com)
The majority of ESPN’s experts are also picking the Sharks. (ESPN.com)
For CBS Sports, Adam Gretz and Chris Peters are split on the outcome. (CBS Sports)
Tickets for the first Stanley Cup Final in San Jose appear to be going for significantly more than their Pittsburgh Penguins counterparts. (Pittsburgh Post-Gazette)
Inspired by John Scott‘s comments, here’s the start of a World Cup All-Snubs’ team. (TSN)
Peter DeBoer said that then New Jersey Devils GM Lou Lamoriello fired him from the Devils’ head coaching job late at night on Christmas. The news then broke on Dec. 26. (Tom Gulitti)
The Pittsburgh Penguins are Vegas favorites to win the 2016 Stanley Cup, but the odds lean toward a San Jose Sharks player capturing the Conn Smythe.
Bovada released a variety of odds on Sunday after others surfaced on Friday.
Joe Pavelski is pegged as a +400 favorite as a winner, edging some other top candidates such as Sidney Crosby, Phil Kessel and Matt Murray.
Here’s the full list:
Logan Couture +500
Martin Jones +600
Brent Burns +700
Joe Thornton +900
Evgeni Malkin +900
Kris Letang +1400
Bovada also released prop bets, including how long the series might last. Check that out here.