Internet sports book Bovada has posted a few fun props for Thursday’s All-Star Fantasy Draft (8 p.m. ET NBCSP, TSN, RDS). Let’s take a look:
Who will be picked first?
The overwhelming favorite is Senators defenseman Erik Karlsson (5/6), who captain Daniel Alfredsson has already said he’ll choose first for his team. But what if Zdeno Chara wins the coin toss and gets first pick? Chara’s Boston teammate, Tim Thomas, is getting 6/1 odds, which are considerably higher than Karlsson’s. Would Chara really pass on picking Thomas first if he had the option? Not sure that would be a wise PR move, given what’s been written lately. “So Zdeno, did you pass on Thomas because everyone on the Bruins can’t stand him?” That said, one guy that might be worth taking a chance on is Leafs forward Phil Kessel at a whopping 35/1. Two reasons: 1) He was the last pick last season and handled it like a champ, 2) Kessel’s teammate, Joffrey Lupul, is Chara’s assistant captain.
Who will be picked last?
Four co-favorites (13/2) here – Jamie Benn, Jason Pominville, Logan Couture and Jordan Eberle. Remember, it has to be a forward, as all goalies and defenseman have to be chosen by Round 10 and Round 15, respectively. If I had to pick one of those four, I’d go with Couture. Why? Benn has more points (42 to Couture’s 36), Pominville’s a vet and might even get a pity pick because he’s on the Sabres, and Eberle would be fun to have on your team during an All-Star game.
Will Chara pick a member of the Vancouver Canucks?
Yes (-300), No (+200). Three Canucks made the squad – Henrik Sedin, Daniel Sedin and Alex Edler. The odds makers are probably thinking that when one Sedin is picked the other one will go next, which is what happened last year. However, it’s worth noting that Bruins forward Shawn Thornton has said he doesn’t want Chara to pick any Canucks, so maybe that will be a factor. One player that Chara definitely won’t be picking? Shawn Thornton.
Bruce Meyer’s résumé of victories as a lawyer is a long and impressive one, and he has now joined the NHL Players’ Association as a senior director of collective bargaining, policy and legal, the union announced Thursday.
During his tenure of more than 25 years at the law firm Weil, Gotshal and Manges LLP, Meyer represented the NHLPA, NFLPA and NBPA.
The NHLPA said in a statement that in his new position, Meyer “will focus on a wide array of policy and legal issues.”
In working for those unions, he was involved in matters such as collective bargaining and arbitration, as per his online profile.
“Bruce will be a great addition to the NHLPA’s staff. He brings a wealth of knowledge to this new role coming from his law firm where he gained three decades’ worth of valuable experience, including effectively representing the NHLPA and other Players’ Associations as outside counsel,” said NHLPA executive director Don Fehr in a statement.
The NHLPA said Meyer will begin at his new position in mid-August.
The news of this hire comes more than a month after the league sued the NHLPA after Dennis Wideman‘s 20-game suspension for hitting linesman Don Henderson was reduced to 10 games by a neutral arbitrator.
Related: Report: NHL dismisses neutral arbitrator who reduced Wideman’s suspension
Chicago Blackhawks fans, start your engines!
Yes, according to MotorSportsTalk, the Blackhawks have become the main sponsor of CJ Wilson Racing’s No. 35 car, a Porsche Cayman GT4 Clubsport, for the upcoming IMSA Continental Tire SportsCar Challenge event at Road America next month.
That’s a sweet ride.
The partnership will officially launch at the United Center on Wednesday, August 3, from 11 a.m. until 1 p.m in advance of Saturday’s race. Fans will have the opportunity to get up close to the car, meet the drivers and Blackhawks Ambassador Denis Savard, and have their picture taken.
The race takes place Aug. 6 at Road America in Wisconsin.
Since being selected by the Coyotes at 13th overall in the 2010 NHL Draft, Brandon Gormley has had a difficult time breaking into the league on a full-time basis.
On Thursday, the 24-year-old Gormley joined his third NHL team, signing with the New Jersey Devils on a one-year, two-way deal worth $650,000 at the NHL level, the club announced.
Despite his draft status, Gormley has yet to play a full season in the big league, although this deal could give him an opportunity to end that. For the Devils, the deal adds more depth to the blue line in the organization and for a friendly price.
Last season, Gormley split time between the Colorado Avalanche and its farm team, the San Antonio Rampage. Despite some high expectations about where he could fit on the Avs’ blue line, he was eventually put on waivers in January.
He ended the season with one assist in 26 games with the Avalanche, and hit the open market after Colorado didn’t give him a qualifying offer.
After ongoing contract talks between the Minnesota Wild and restricted free agent defenseman Matt Dumba, the two sides have come to a deal.
The Wild announced Thursday that they had signed Dumba to a two-year deal, worth a total value of $5.1 million.
A breakdown of the new deal:
— In 2016-17: $2.35 million.
— In 2017-18: $2.75 million.
Selected seventh overall by the Wild in 2012, Dumba had his most productive campaign this past season, with 10 goals and 26 points in 81 games.
Known for his offensive skills — he had 20 goals and 57 points with Red Deer in the WHL in his draft year — Dumba also brings a coveted right-shot to the Wild blue line, which features four players with contracts of four or more years of term remaining.
As per General Fanager, the Wild still have $2.168 million in projected cap space, but they have secured all their remaining restricted free agents.