Gary Lawless reports that Evander Kane is “mulling over” a Winnipeg Jets’ six-year deal that would be worth “in the neighborhood of” $29 million. That would mean he’d register a cap hit of just under $5 million per season ($4.83 million, to be exact).
Kane will turn 21 in August, so under the current CBA guidelines, such a deal would cover him until his first year of unrestricted free agent eligibility. There was some talk that Kane didn’t want to sign with the Jets in June, but reports began circulating that discussions were picking up about a week ago.
The franchise drafted him fourth overall in 2009. If Kane agrees to this offer, he’d generate a considerably larger cap hit than third pick Matt Duchene and about $620K less per year than top choice John Tavares.
Kane set career-highs in goals (30), assists (27), points (57), plus/minus (+11) and games played (74) last season. He also set a new high mark in shots on goal, with 287 – good for ninth overall in the NHL. Kane’s 30 goals topped all Jets players while he was second on the team in points behind Blake Wheeler, who had 64.
For the second time in his career, Ryan Kesler is wearing an “A.”
On Thursday, the Anaheim Ducks announced that Kesler would serve as one of the club’s alternate captains this season, taking over for Francois Beauchemin, who signed in Colorado this summer.
With the move, Kesler joins Anaheim’s existing leadership group of captain Ryan Getzlaf, and alternate Corey Perry.
“It’s an honor,” Kesler said, per the Ducks. “It’s special. I’m going to wear it with pride and lead by example.”
As mentioned earlier, Kesler has some experience as an alternate — he wore an “A” in Vancouver from 2008-13, but had it removed prior to the start of the ’13-14 campaign.
It’s not surprising Anaheim went in this direction. GM Bob Murray made a huge investment in Kesler this summer by inking the 31-year-old to a six-year, $41.25M extension.
Could Raphael Diaz be on his way back to Switzerland?
We’ll know in a month.
Diaz, who lost out on the Rangers’ final blueline spot in training camp, has reported to the club’s AHL affiliate in Hartford but doesn’t seem pleased with his current situation, per the Post:
The 29-year-old Diaz, who cleared waivers last Saturday after the Blueshirts opted to keep rookie Dylan McIlrath as the club’s seventh on the blue line, is interested in the European option if he is not in the NHL.
The Blueshirts have told Diaz they will revisit the situation at the end of October, but have not promised to release him or assign him to a European team at that point.
If Diaz, a Swiss native who represented Switzerland in the 2014 Olympics, does play in Europe during the season, he would have to go through waivers in order to return to the NHL.
Diaz’s agent, Ritch Winter, told the Post that Diaz signed a one-year, $700,000 deal with the Rangers “to play with the Rangers.”
And it’s understandable if Diaz — a journeyman offensive defenseman — isn’t happy with this situation.
While some believe McIlrath earned his roster spot on merit, some think it’s because of his contract status. McIlrath, who’s only 23 and a former first-round pick, would’ve needed to clear waivers to go back to Hartford, and it’s believed he would’ve been claimed by another club.