The Vancouver Canucks’ goaltending situation has been the source of drama for quite some time, while Ryan Miller’s uncertainty seems like it mainly sprouted up as free agency approaches. Either way, the two sides may very well find an answer together once July 1 rolls around.
If nothing else, the two seem to be talking about a possible deal.
Multiple sources report that Miller is in Vancouver talking to Canucks brass as the free agent period approaches.
There was already some scuttlebutt about the Canucks flirting with Miller, 33, so this presents fire where there was smoke.
Adding Miller would provide a slight logjam, albeit a manageable one, in Vancouver. The Canucks currently employ the young tandem of Eddie Lack and Jacob Markstrom, with both providing promise but also a lack (sorry) of experience.
Lack makes $1.15 million for the next two seasons while Markstrom will be a RFA after he finishes out a deal that carries a $1.2 million cap hit in 2014-15. Neither deal is difficult to trade, while putting them on waivers could mean losing a goalie for nothing.
Consider this: Miller has 559 games of regular season experience alone while Lack and Markstrom combine for 88 games of regular season experience.
In a lot of ways, the idea makes plenty of sense: Miller could provide the stability the Canucks crave and vice versa. Of course, there’s the possibility that this situation could meltdown into another soap opera … which wouldn’t be so bad for those of us who get to write about it.
Not that such scenarios factor into our excitement about such matters, of course.
The Toronto Maple Leafs won’t require arbitration with forward Peter Holland. They’ve signed the 25-year-old to a one-year deal worth a reported $1.3 million.
Holland had a hearing scheduled for today. Last week, the Leafs sent a message by putting him on waivers, which he cleared.
Holland had nine goals and 18 assists in 65 games last season. With him signed, the Leafs have only defensemen Frank Corrado and Martin Marincin as restricted free agents. Corrado has an arbitration hearing scheduled for tomorrow; Marincin’s is next Tuesday.
Related: Corrado and Leafs aren’t that far apart
This is an important week in the Detroit Red Wings’ offseason, with Petr Mrazek‘s arbitration hearing scheduled for Wednesday and Danny DeKeyser‘s for Thursday.
GM Ken Holland would prefer to avoid the hearings, which can sometimes result in hurt feelings.
“I think a negotiated settlement is always better than having an arbitrated settlement,” Holland told MLive.com. “Obviously, both sides run (the risk) of somebody’s not going to be happy.”
That being said, in Mrazek’s case, the two sides still have a ways to go. Remember that the 24-year-old netminder was excellent for most of 2015-16, but in Holland’s words, “the wheels came off a little bit in the middle of February.”
Hence, the divide:
DeKeyser, meanwhile, is more of a proven NHL commodity. He’s had three full seasons in the league. In the 26-year-old defenseman, the Red Wings pretty much know what they’ve got.
“There’s way more comparables, I think, in Dan DeKeyser‘s case so it was easier to figure out what was the market place,” said Holland. “That’s certainly not the case of Petr Mrazek’s situation.”
Holland’s work will not be finished once Mrazek and DeKeyser are signed. He still wants to add another defenseman, and he’s got a surplus of forwards to work with.
Related: Holland makes argument to keep Jimmy Howard
The Flyers won’t require today’s scheduled arbitration hearing with Brayden Schenn. They’ve agreed to terms with the 24-year-old forward on a four-year contract with a reported cap hit of $5.125 million.
Schenn had a career-high 26 goals and 33 assists in 2015-16. His 59 points were the third most on the Flyers, behind only Claude Giroux‘s 67 and Wayne Simmonds‘ 60.
The Schenn signing leaves the Flyers with just over $1 million in cap space for 2016-17, but no major free agents remaining. RFA defenseman Brandon Manning still needs a contract, but that’s it, per General Fanager. Manning has an arbitration hearing scheduled for Aug. 2.
Related: Coyotes sign Luke Schenn
Ben Scrivens is off to Belarus. The 29-year-old goalie has reportedly signed with Dinamo Minsk of the KHL.
Scrivens made 14 starts for the Montreal Canadiens in 2015-16, failing to really take advantage of his opportunity with the Habs and finishing 5-8-0 with a .906 save percentage.
In total, Scrivens made 144 appearances (130 starts) in NHL games, his best season coming in 2013-14, which he split between Los Angeles and Edmonton. The Oilers gave up a third-round draft pick to get him. They eventually acquired Zack Kassian when they dealt him away.
Related: Maple Leafs reportedly close to signing Jhonas Enroth