Chicago Blackhawks v Detroit Red Wings - Game Six

Filppula ‘here to make’ Lightning a better team, says Yzerman


Steve Yzerman knows what people are going to say – or have already been saying – about Valtteri Filppula.

The Tampa Bay Lightning, along with Yzerman the general manager, signed Filppula on Friday, during the league’s frantic free agent frenzy, for $25 million over five years.

Prior to Filppula signing in Tampa, the Lightning bought out Vincent Lecavalier, who began his career with the Bolts as a first-overall pick all the way back in 1998.

Lecavalier, as a free agent, then went out and signed with the Philadelphia Flyers.

So yes, connect the dots and it’s easy to see why people feel Filppula is there to replace Lecavalier. Yzerman, at least publicly, doesn’t feel the same way.

“We’ve changed our team; we’ve acquired a good player who’s going to be a real positive contributor to our team, who’s a real good guy,” Yzerman told

“We understand everybody’s going to say, ‘Oh, he’s here to replace Vinny.’ He’s here to make us a better team and he will make us a better team.”

Avs unveil new third jerseys

Avs Jerseys

The Avalanche will be throwing a bunch of different looks at us this season.

Having already released specialized “Mile High” jerseys for February’s Stadium Series game, the Avs unveiled new third sweaters on Friday — less than 24 hours after a bitter 5-4 home loss to Minnesota in their season opener.

(Guess Colorado wanted to send out some good vibes after blowing a 4-1 third-period lead.)

While undoubtedly exciting for the organization, the release of these new thirds isn’t taking anybody by surprise. Last month, several websites published leaked images of Colorado’s and Anaheim’s third jerseys, so the design has been in the public eye for several weeks.

The Avs will debut these new thirds on Oct. 24, in a Saturday night tilt against Columbus.

Related: Roy explains why he didn’t call time out

Report: Escrow set at 16 percent

Gary Bettman, Donald Fehr
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Hey, remember in June when the NHLPA voted to keep the five-percent growth factor in spite of increasing worries about escrow?

Well, here’s why that decision was a significant one, via TSN’s Frank Seravalli:

With early revenue projections in place, the NHL and NHLPA set the escrow withholding rate for players at 16 per cent for the first quarter of the season on Thursday.

That means every player will have 16 per cent of earnings deducted from their paycheque and put aside until after all of this season’s hockey-related revenue is counted to ensure a perfect 50-50 revenue split with owners.

Now, this doesn’t mean that the players will definitely lose 16 percent of their salaries. Typically, they receive refunds when all the accounting is done.

Still, 16 percent is a good-sized chunk to withhold. They won’t be thrilled about it.

Related: To understand escrow, consider Duncan Keith