Johnny Gaudreau still hasn’t signed a new contract with the Calgary Flames, but it doesn’t sound like that’s gonna stop him from playing in the World Cup.
According to Sportsnet’s Elliotte Friedman, Gaudreau has already confirmed that he will participate in next month’s tournament.
Here’s an excerpt from Friendman’s story:
There’s some question about unsigned free agents — Johnny Gaudreau, Sean Monahan and Jacob Trouba, for example — and whether or not they will compete without new contracts. According to a couple of sources, Gaudreau confirmed he will do so earlier this week.
Players can purchase extra insurance to cover themselves and it’s believed he did so.
The fact that Gaudreau picked up some extra insurance shows that he’s not very confident he’ll have a new deal in place by the time the tournament starts.
To add a little more intrigue to the story, Friedman is also reporting that Gaudreau isn’t willing to negotiate while the tournament is going on.
The 23-year-old is coming off a pair of fantastic seasons with the Flames. He’s scored 24 and 30 goals and 64 and 78 points in his first two years in the NHL.
Either he’ll have to sign a bridge deal or the Flames will have to pony up the cash to get him signed long-term.
It’s hard enough to sign one of your budding stars, but the Flames also have to come to terms with Sean Monahan, who was also named to Team North America’s roster.
Like Gaudreau, Monahan is looking to get paid after putting together multiple impressive campaigns with the Flames.
Letting these unresolved situations linger probably isn’t a good idea for Calgary.
A similar situation is going on in another Canadian city. The Winnipeg Jets also need to figure out what it’ll take to get defenseman Jacob Trouba under contract. There were rumblings that they might be willing to trade him this off-season, but those whispers seem to have quieted down.
Trouba will also have to decide if he’s willing to play for Team North America if he doesn’t have a new deal in place.