Safe to say Rangers GM Glen Sather isn’t all that pleased with how contract negotiations are going with restricted free agent Michael Del Zotto.
Sather tells Larry Brooks of the New York Post that the team’s offer is more than fair and it’s time for him to make sure he gets to training camp.
“Michael has until [tomorrow] morning to figure this out, and I sure hope he does so he doesn’t have to miss any time,” Sather told The Post last night. “We’ve made Michael a very good and very fair offer.
“Sitting out is not going to help him in any way.”
Brooks says the offer is a two-year deal worth a bit more than $2.4 million per year. Del Zotto, meanwhile, apparently wants $3 million per season.
Teams can’t officially sign anyone until there’s a Memorandum of Understanding signed between the NHL and Players’ Association. The Sunday deadline Sather is talking about is the official start of training camp which can happen once the MOU is taken care of. That’s expected to be completed today.
Either way, Del Zotto isn’t earning any brownie points with the Rangers by playing hardball.
Following his stunning 41-game suspension, it looks like Raffi Torres has at least one former teammate in his corner.
We haven’t yet seen how the San Jose Sharks or the NHLPA are reacting to the league’s hammer-dropping decision to punish Torres for his Torres-like hit on Jakob Silfverberg, but Jason Demers decided to put in a good word for Torres tonight.
It was a simple message: “#FreeTorres.”
Demers, now of the Dallas Stars, was once with Torres and the Sharks. (In case this post’s main image didn’t make that clear enough already.)
Perhaps this will become “a thing” at some point.
So far, it seems like it’s instead “a thing (that people are making fun of).”
… You get the idea.
The bottom line is that there are some who either a) blindly support Torres because they’re Sharks fans or b) simply think that the punishment was excessive.
The most important statement came from the Department of Player Safety, though.
Those who feel as though the Boston Bruins may rebound – John Tortorella, maybe? – likely rest some of their optimism on the back of a healthy Zdeno Chara.
It’s possible that he’s merely limping into what may otherwise be a healthy 2015-16 season, but it’s definitely looking like a slow start thanks to a lower-body injury.
The latest sign of a bumpy beginning came on Monday, as several onlookers (including CSNNE.com’s Joe Haggerty) pointed out that Chara was listed on injured reserve.
As Haggerty notes, that move is retroactive to Sept. 24, so his status really just opens up options for the Bruins.
Still … it’s a little unsettling, isn’t it?
The Bruins likely realize that they need to transition away from their generational behemoth, but last season provided a stark suggestion that may not be ready yet. Trading Dougie Hamilton and losing Dennis Seidenberg to injury only make them more dependent on the towering 38-year-old.
This isn’t really something to panic about, yet it might leave a few extra seats open on the Bruins’ bandwagon.