Even so, it’s been a start-and-stop development for Nichushkin, who to some extent needed injuries to get reps during the playoffs. There have been injury issues and healthy scratches over the years.
Looking at these situations, it’s reasonable to wonder if he really would flirt with a departure. The Stars increasingly expensivegroup of forwards and his RFA status makes you wonder if he’d garner a significant pay raise – and probably a heightened role – if he went overseas.
The Stars say they aren’t concerned, though, for what it’s worth.
Fixing Bob: Blue Jackets seem confident in new consultant
“Nelson’s going to be evaluating and improving everything, right away,” Kekalainen said. “His impact is going to be felt right away. He’s coming in as a consultant, and Kevin is staying onboard. Together they’re going to improve everybody’s output, not just strength and conditioning but overall performance.”
Ayotte’s referred to as a “high-performance coach.” The role is being sold as a way to improve the way staff works instead of standing as a replacement.
As much as this is about improving the inner-workings of the staff, let’s be honest; the team specifically wants to get more out of their seemingly fragile $7.425 million goalie.
In that regard, Kekalainen said he wants Ayotte and Bobrovsky to get acquainted in “short order.”
Groin injuries rank among the trickier issues – how exactly do you avoid recurring problems there? – but credit Columbus for going the extra mile to try to turn things around.
Don’t be surprised if the Toronto Maple Leafs’ goalie duo ends up being Frederik Andersen and Garret Sparks next season.
The Maple Leafs signed Sparks to a one-year, two-way deal on Friday. The two-way nature of that contract gives the Buds a little wiggle room if they aren’t confident that Sparks will stand as their No. 2, but he seems like the right guy at the moment.
But this is also an odd fit for a London franchise. It’s been challenging enough to generate interest for the EIHL, and now you’re asking fans with a tangential-at-best interest in ice hockey to get down with a London vs. Severstal Cherepovets, rivalry, rather than, say, Edinburgh?