Dougie Hamilton spent three seasons with the Boston Bruins, but he apparently thought he’d be with that organization for a lot longer.
“I always thought I was going to be a Bruin for life, like you said, and always had that vision that I was only going to wear one jersey in the NHL,” said Hamilton, as per CSNNE.com.
“I’m really thankful to that organization for the opportunity I got my first few years and the development I got and everything, so it’s an organization … the fans are unbelievable and teammates and everything. It’s something I enjoyed a lot being there.”
Hamilton’s time with the Bruins came to an abrupt end at the NHL Draft, when the Bruins traded the 22-year-old talented defenseman to the Calgary Flames for three draft picks.
The Bruins had tried to re-sign Hamilton, who at the time of the trade was a pending restricted free agent. According to reports following the trade, Boston’s offer to Hamilton was six years at $33 million.
The Flames signed Hamilton to a six-year deal before the end of June.
The Tampa Bay Lightning re-signed center Vladislav Namestnikov and defenseman Luke Witkowski to one-year, two-way contracts, the club announced Friday.
Namestnikov, 22, was selected by the Lightning 27th overall in the first round of the 2011 NHL Draft. In 43 games with the Lightning this season, he emerged onto the scene by scoring nine goals and had 16 points, and also appeared in 12 post-season games as Tampa Bay made its run to the Stanley Cup Final.
Witkowski, 25, appeared in 16 games for the Lightning this season. He spent the majority of this season with the Syracuse Crunch in the AHL.
There is now yet another twist when it comes to the possibility of NHL expansion to the Seattle market.
According to King5.com, Victor Coleman, a prospective Seattle NHL owner who wanted to work out a deal for a team to play at the “potential” arena in the SoDo district, will not submit an application by the July 20 deadline for the first phase of the expansion process.
A source involved from the Seattle effort said Friday the Coleman group had told the NHL it wanted to finalize the arena site before submitting an application. The same source also indicated Vancouver, B.C., native Coleman hoped to “fast track” the expansion process once a land deal is completed. Coleman’s camp, according to sources, also indicated it is still committed to bringing an NHL franchise to Seattle.
The expansion process began earlier this month, and it was previously reported that the league was expecting one, or perhaps multiple applications from prospective owners or groups in Seattle.
Last month, there was a report that a Seattle group led by Ray Bartoszek was going to apply for an NHL expansion team in Tukwila, Wash., however according to King5.com on Friday, it’s no longer clear if Bartoszek plans to submit an application Monday.
Las Vegas, Quebec City and Toronto have also been mentioned as markets with groups showing particular interest in NHL expansion.
The cost for simply applying for a franchise is $10 million, with $2 million of that being non-refundable, according to the Seattle Times.
Related: Seattle group to apply for NHL expansion team
L.A. Kings center Anze Kopitar will turn 28 years old toward the end of next month, so could he be celebrating his birthday with a contract extension?
According to LA Kings Insider, negotiations between the Kings and Kopitar on an extension have only just started but are expected to pick up as the summer continues. The report also mentions optimism that an extension could be finalized by the end of the summer.
From LA Kings Insider:
One of the reasons for the timing of the current contract push is that the Kings needed to finalize new contracts for a heavy crop of restricted free agents. That had been communicated to Kopitar and his representation, and because the final six RFAs signed contracts with the Kings over the previous two days, Kopitar’s extension now becomes the club’s highest and most forefront priority. Because he would be resigning with Los Angeles, he would be eligible to sign an eight-year contract extension.
Kopitar has spent his entire NHL career to date with the Kings, winning two Stanley Cups in 2012 and 2014. In both runs to the championship, he had a point-per-game pace. He recorded 64 points last season, but finished ninth in the league with 48 assists.
He was also a dominant force as far as puck possession goes, with the second-best Corsi For rating on the Kings at 59.2 per cent at five-on-five, according to stats.hockeyanalysis.com.
Kopitar is entering the final year of his current seven-year contract worth a total of $47.6 million. He would be eligible for unrestricted free agency at the end of the 2015-16 season.
The Buffalo Sabres have reportedly signed left winger Johan Larsson to a one-year, one-way deal worth $800,000, according to a report out of Sweden.
From the Buffalo News:
“Sure it is good money, but for me this is mainly that I will now be able to continue playing hockey with a very exciting team with new players and new coach,” Larsson said, in the Google translation of Gotland Newspapers. “It will be an exciting season.”
The Sabres have yet to officially announce a deal.
Now 22 years old and a former second-round pick of the Minnesota Wild, Larsson scored six goals and 16 points in 39 games with the Sabres last season. He split the 2014-15 campaign between Buffalo and the AHL Rochester Americans.
He scored 15 goals and had 40 points in 44 games with Rochester.