It seems like things are really starting to come together for the New Jersey Devils in the early part of this offseason.
On Sunday, they made a bigger splash at the draft by trading one of their picks for goalie of the future(/present?) Cory Schneider. With free agency looming, it appears that GM Lou Lamoriello is getting other ducks in a row, as he nears a deal with Patrick Elias and Dainius Zubrus agreed to a three-year contract on Monday, according to the Newark Star Ledger’s Rich Chere.
Chere reports that Zubrus signed for three-years, $9.3 million ($3.1 million per year). That falls just about line with a report on Thursday. It’s a slight pay cut from his previous average of $3.4 million for each season.
The Lithuanian forward seemed relieved while discussing the deal with Chere.
“I was hoping it was going to turn out the way it did,” Zubrus said.
The team’s ownership and financial issues weren’t an impediment to getting things done.
“Not for me,” Zubrus said. “I came here because of Lou. As long as he’s here …”
It’s hard to argue with Zubrus’ loyalty after this past weekend.
You probably know the drill: injury updates are murky in the NHL basically from the moment a puck drops.
We’ll learn more once the 2015-16 season begins, but at the moment, Saturday might have served as a costly night for the Tampa Bay Lightning. Both Tyler Johnson and Alex Killorn went down with injuries stemming from a 3-2 pre-season win against the Florida Panthers.
“Guys were dropping like flies,” Steven Stamkos told the Tamba Bay Times.
These could be minor situations – just about any ailment will sideline a key asset this time of year – yet one cannot help but wonder if the Lightning might limp into this campaign.
Nikita Kucherov is dealing with his own issues, so that means at least minor issues for one half of the Bolts’ top six forwards.
It’s believed that more will be known about these banged-up Bolts sometime on Sunday.
With knee issues still limiting him, Raffi Torres isn’t as mobile as he once was. Apparently he still moves well enough to leave the usual path of destruction.
It’s the pre-season, so it’s unclear if we’ll get a good look at the check, but Torres received a match penalty for his hit on Anaheim Ducks forward Jakob Silfverberg.
Most accounts were pretty critical of the San Jose Sharks’ chief troublemaker:
It’s too early to tell if Silfverberg is injured. If he is, that’s a significant loss for the Ducks, as he really showed signs of fulfilling his promise (especially during the 2015 playoffs).
As far as Torres goes, he’s hoping to play in the Sharks’ season-opener. Wherever he ends up, he’ll certainly make plenty of enemies on the ice.
Whether it was because of that hit or just the general distaste shared by those sides, it sounds like tonight’s Sharks – Ducks exhibition is getting ugly, in general:
This post will be updated if video of the hit becomes available, and also if we get a better idea of Silfverberg’s condition.
Update: Bullet dodged?