Sounds like the last Tootoo train whistle has been blown at Bridgestone Arena.
According to agent Kevin Epp, Jordin Tootoo won’t receive a contract extension from the Predators, meaning he’ll become a UFA when free agency kicks off this Sunday.
Tootoo, 29, has spent his entire eight-year career in Nashville, emerging as one of the league’s most identifiable agitators. He should have more than a few suitors on the open market, especially given he posted career highs in assists (24) and points (30) last season.
Despite those numbers, there were questions about what role Tootoo played — and would play — in Nashville. He only made three postseason appearances and was one of the odd men out after the Preds made all their trade deadline splashes. GM David Poile openly recognized there was a difference of opinion about Tootoo’s role…as did Tootoo.
“When you get shut down and told you’re not playing, it [expletive] burns,” Tootoo told The Tennessean the day before Nashville beat Detroit in Game 5 of the Western Conference quarterfinals. “After doing everything right, it just [expletive]. … I’m [ticked] off because I’m not able to do what I love to do and that’s playing the game.”
Tootoo’s last deal was a two-year contract worth $1.25 million annually.
This hasn’t been the best night for St. Louis sports fans.
Obviously, the MLB’s Cardinals getting bounced from the playoffs is a bigger deal, but the Blues face bad news, too.
While they’re currently leading the Calgary Flames by a score of 4-3, they’ll need to hang on without Kevin Shattenkirk, whose night is over thanks to a lower-body injury.
There’s no word yet on how severe the issue might be.
Naturally, the Blues must hope that it’s minor, as Shattenkirk is one of the NHL’s truly underrated assets on the blueline.
Stephanie (@MyRegularFace) tracked down a moment when the injury may have happened:
It’s not all rosy for the Flames, either, as Lance Bouma suffered an injury as well.
In some ways, it really felt like their first-round series.
For all the talent on both ends of the rink with the Detroit Red Wings and Tampa Bay Lightning, each squad can really smother opponents defensively when things go that way.
Through two periods, the two teams were very quiet. Things really picked up when Justin Abdelkader unleashed a big hit, a moment that injected enough life into the proceedings for the Red Wings to eventually build a 3-1 win.
Maybe they’re slipping under the radar a bit compared to previous iterations of the team, but it’s interesting that the Red Wings are now undefeated in three games.
They’ve been impressive at times, too, outscoring opponents by a combined score of 11-4.
Call it a refreshing time after Mike Babcock or merely carryover from a subtly solid run last season, but either way, the Red Wings may just be able to keep up their end of a brewing rivalry.