PHT’s Morning Skate takes a look around the world of hockey to see what’s happening and what we’ll be talking about around the NHL world and beyond.
Before John Scott officially becomes a free agent, he decided to jokingly call out his former San Jose Sharks’ teammates. (CSN Bay Area)
With Jeff Skinner reportedly on the market, is there a chance that he’ll go to Pittsburgh? (Pittsburgh Post-Gazette
Jack Eichel has something in common with Indiana Jones. (Puck Daddy)
Dylan Strome talks about the nerves that come with draft day. (NHL.com)
The Boston Bruins recent draft history has been less than stellar. (Boston Herald)
Here are 10 players that might mess with people’s draft predictions. (The Hockey Writers)
Pekka Rinne has a new Mad Max inspired mask (Instagram)
According to ESPN’s Pierre LeBrun, the Carolina Hurricanes have made it known that forward Jeff Skinner is available.
Skinner is set to enter the third year of his six-year, $34.35 million deal next season. He does have a no-trade clause in his contract, but it does not activate until the 2017-18 season.
The 23-year-old, who has battled concussion issues, scored 18 goals and 13 assists in 77 games last season. His deal carries a cap hit of $5.725 million.
Meanwhile Chip Alexander of the Raleigh News & Observer reports that Canes GM Ron Francis is in the process of working on extensions for both Eric Staal and Cam Ward.
Francis told reporters on Thursday that both players have given him “every indication” they want to remain in Carolina.
Neither can sign extensions before July 1.
Both players are heading to the final year of their respective deals and will become unrestricted free agents next summer. Agent Rick Curran also represents both players.
Staal his heading into the final year of his seven-year, $57.75 million contract while Ward has one year remaining on his six-year, $37.8 million deal.
Alexander also reports that Carolina will part ways with pending unrestricted free agent defensemen Jack Hillen and Brett Bellemore.
Additionally, the Canes won’t re-sign forward Patrick Dwyer
According to Generalfanager.com, Francis has $13.95 million of cap space to work with heading into free agency.
There is an interesting dynamic brewing with the Carolina Hurricanes when it comes to four of their top players, including Eric and Jordan Staal, Jeff Skinner and goalie Cam Ward.
All four are represented by the same agent in Rick Curran, and Carolina general manager Ron Francis will have some important decisions to make about the futures of all four players, most notably Eric Staal, who is entering the final year of his contract, which includes a no-trade clause.
From the Raleigh News & Observer:
Basically, every high-priced, popular, star player the Hurricanes might even consider trading as part of a rebuilding process has the same agent, and this summer brings a new kind of time pressure.
Both Eric Staal and Ward need to be either re-signed or traded, because their contracts are up after next season. Jordan Staal is signed to a long-term contract but came here to play with his brother and may not want to stay without him. Skinner has three years left on his contract but is one of the Hurricanes’ most marketable assets.
As the NHL Draft nears — it was only two weeks away, as of Friday — the speculation around the future of the elder Staal, the Hurricanes captain, could intensify. It’s worth noting that on Friday, it was reported that Francis is not seeking to trade Staal at this point