Filip Forsberg

Caps ink first-round pick Forsberg — three years, $2.5 million


The steady stream of first-round signings continued on Friday as the Washington Capitals agreed to terms with Filip Forsberg — the 11th overall pick at the 2012 Draft — to a three-year entry level deal.

According to CSN Washington’s Chuck Gormley, it’s a $2.5 million contract with an average annual value (at the NHL level) of $832,500.

“They wanted to sign me and I wanted to sign with such a big organization and a good team,” Forsberg said. “It was a dream come true. I got a good first feeling from the Capitals and I thought it was a good decision to get it done right away.”

Forsberg is currently in Washington at the Capitals’ prospect development camp, but has made it clear he’ll be returning to Sweden next season to play for Leksand of the Allsvenskan (Swedish second division.

Gormely also notes that since Leksand’s training camp begins in late August, Forsberg will not attend Capitals training camp in September.

Getting Forsberg to put pen to paper had to be relieving for the Capitals organization. The team’s first-round pick in 2010, Evgeny Kuznetsov, has yet to sign a deal with Washington — in early June, he inked a two-year agreement with KHL side Traktor Chelyabinsk.

Kane scores OT-winner, caps Islanders’ bumpy start in Brooklyn

Patrick Kane

On paper, it’s the perfect way to kick off meaningful hockey in Brooklyn, as the New York Islanders faced the defending champion Chicago Blackhawks on Friday.

In reality, there were some highs and lows, culminating with Patrick Kane scoring a power-play overtime-winner to give Chicago a 3-2 (OT) win.

The Barclays Center crowd was going to be a big part of the story one way or another, but even by building-opening standards, the audience made some waves.

Indeed, Kane was greeted with some jeers during his first road appearance of the 2015-16 season, though he didn’t sound surprised.

(There were other controversial chants, apparently.)

Speaking of the crowd, it may not have been the greatest turnout:

ESPN goes way, way in depth on how the change of locale was received, by the way.

It wasn’t a perfect night inside the rink, either, as there weren’t exactly rave reviews about ice quality. New York Newsday’s Arthur Staple compared the ice to a “slushy” and “soup,” with an anonymous Islander (or Islanders) describing the conditions as “awful.”

Kane was pretty diplomatic about it, for what it’s worth.


So, no, it was not a perfect night for the Islanders.

They probably envisioned a teeming, perfectly mannered crowd. Management likely expected Jaroslav Halak to be in net, too.

Sometimes breaking ground is often about overcoming those early stumbles, though, and maybe the best review is to parallel the on-ice results: the Isles at least got a point out of it.

Let’s not forget that there are some cool perks that come with this situation, even if the specifics may vary.

If you want even more information/photos/etc., you’d probably do well to check out #IslesOpeningNight.

Columbus collapse: Rangers spoil Blue Jackets’ opener

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For a little more than a minute, Brandon Saad was going to be the story of the Columbus Blue Jackets’ opener. Instead, his power-play goal merely got the ball rolling on a flabbergasting finish.

The New York Rangers scored three goals in 1:17 of game time to manage a 4-2 win.

They’ve now spoiled home openers for the Chicago Blackhawks and Columbus Blue Jackets to begin their 2015-16 season.

It might be easiest just to show you when the goals were scored, noting that the third period began with a 1-1 tie.

Brandon Saad power-play goal: 16:10 into third period (2-1 Columbus)
Oscar Lindberg: 17:24 (2-2 tie)
Kevin Hayes: 17:41 (3-2 Rangers)
Mats Zuccarello: 18:41 (4-2 Rangers)

Yikes. Zuccarello scored two of the Rangers’ goals, while a beauty by Cam Atkinson is likely long forgotten.