Report: Rangers in discussion with pending UFA goalie Pavelec


The New York Rangers have a void to fill, after dealing goalie Antti Raanta to the Arizona Coyotes at the draft.

It’s expected to be a busy day for free agent goalies tomorrow, as several clubs look to lock down that position before things ultimately slow down during the summer. With Raanta gone, the Rangers are among those teams.

Per Darren Dreger of TSN, the Rangers are in discussions with former Jets goalie and pending unrestricted free agent Ondrej Pavelec, who is at the end of his five-year, $19.5 million deal with Winnipeg.

Pavelec has endured his share of struggles in Winnipeg, posting underwhelming numbers, particularly save percentage.

Only once since 2011-12 did Pavelec post a single-season save percentage better than .910 — that was in 2014-15 when he had a .920 save percentage over the course of 50 games and the Jets made the playoffs for the first time since their return to Winnipeg.

The Jets placed Pavelec on waivers in October, then recalled him from the AHL in January as the tandem of Connor Hellebuyck and Michael Hutchinson struggled. He won four of his eight games, posting a save percentage of .888.

He last played on Feb. 7, before undergoing arthroscopic knee surgery in early March, ending his season.

Report: Sharks willing to commit to Thornton for more than one year


It’s already been reported that the San Jose Sharks are making a push to keep Patrick Marleau. The same, it appears, can be said for Joe Thornton, as well.

The Sharks have reportedly offered Marleau a two-year contract. A little bit later on in the day, Kevin Kurz of CSN Bay Area said that San Jose is willing to go more than one year with Thornton, as well.

Marleau and Thornton are both pending unrestricted free agents — at the age of 37.

Thornton, who turns 38 on Sunday, is coming off an MCL injury suffered late in the regular season and later required surgery.

However, earlier this month, general manager Doug Wilson provided a promising update on the health of the veteran playmaking center, saying he was doing “extremely well.”

Several teams have reportedly been in contact with Thornton ahead of the opening of free agency tomorrow. One of those teams is apparently the rival L.A. Kings

Nolan Patrick to miss on-ice activities at Flyers camp following another surgery

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Nolan Patrick has once again undergone surgery, with this latest operation taking place on June 13, the Philadelphia Flyers announced on Friday.

As a result, Patrick will not take part in on-ice activities at Flyers development camp next week. Philadelphia selected him second overall a week ago.

Flyers general manager Ron Hextall said in a statement that Patrick underwent abdominal surgery relating to an injury he dealt with all of last season while in the Western Hockey League.

Hextall added that Patrick will be able to resume full activity in four to six weeks from the date of the surgery. With that timeline, he should be ready to go for training camp in September.

Last summer, Patrick underwent sports hernia surgery and then had his 2016-17 draft campaign — including the world juniors — interrupted by injury, restricting him to 33 regular season games for the Brandon Wheat Kings. He scored 20 goals and 46 points.

Prior to last week’s draft, Patrick was named to Hockey Canada’s World Junior Summer Showcase roster. The camp begins July 30.

Josh Ho-Sang left quite an impression on Islanders coaching staff


Josh Ho-Sang received his first taste of the NHL this past season, appearing in 21 games for the New York Islanders.

A first-round pick of the Islanders in 2014, Ho-Sang scored four times with 10 points in that span, but at the age of 21 and packed with skill, he was able to leave quite an impression on New York’s coaching staff heading into the summer.

With the Islanders going through mini camp, coach Doug Weight was highly complimentary about the play of Ho-Sang following his recall from the minors and his NHL debut on March 2.

“Josh was great,” Weight told “We were getting feedback from [Bridgeport coach Brent Thompson] about his attitude down there, and he was playing hard, learning the system and played with some passion. I think he showed that when he came up.

“He easily could have had better numbers than he had. He created a lot of opportunities in games that he was snakebit or the puck wasn’t going in. Ten points in 21 games, but he could have done a lot better than that, and I think his game was good. He had some blips, and he responded well, and I think that’s a key for a young guy, and especially Josh.”

Read more: Josh Ho-Sang scores first career NHL goal

Islanders general manager Garth Snow has been busy, last week acquiring scoring right winger Jordan Eberle from the Edmonton Oilers. New York now has 13 forwards under contract for next season, and more than $42 million committed.

The Islanders have done a nice job in the last few years stockpiling skilled young forwards like Mathew Barzal, Michael Dal Colle and Kieffer Bellows in their system. Ho-Sang has one year of professional hockey under his belt, putting up 36 points in 50 games as a rookie with the AHL’s Bridgeport Sound Tigers this past season.

But after a strong showing late in the NHL season, Ho-Sang has set his sights on cracking the Islanders roster on a full-time basis next season.

“There’s still a lot of moves they can make, and for me, I just want to come in as strong and as fast as possible and kind of not make it a decision for them . . . just ‘Josh is ready,’” he told Newsday.

Methot confident he can compliment Stars’ offensive d-men


Talk about a hectic few days for Marc Methot.

Methot started last week as a member of the Ottawa Senators but was left unprotected when Dion Phaneuf opted not to waive his no-movement clause. He was plucked during the expansion draft process by Vegas and then dealt to Dallas, as the Golden Knights recouped another draft pick and a prospect goalie.

For the Stars, their offseason plan was simple: Improve their goaltending and improve on defense.

Putting that plan into action is certainly easier said than done, but general manager Jim Nill has made the necessary moves to address those areas, acquiring and then signing Ben Bishop and most recently acquiring Methot. Their new head coach is Ken Hitchcock, who has gained a reputation across the league for defensive structure.

Methot will never be known for his offensive production. He didn’t score a goal in 68 regular season games during the 2016-17 campaign, though he changed that with a pair of goals and four points in the playoffs. What the Stars see in Methot is a “steady defenseman that can play well with an offensive-minded partner,” Nill said two days ago.

It remains to be seen exactly who Methot will be paired with to start next season. Of all the Stars’ defensemen, John Klingberg packs the most offensive punch. In three seasons with Dallas, he’s never gone below the 40-point plateau, hitting 58 points in 2015-16.

“I complement well an offensive-minded player,” Methot told “It allows whoever I’m playing with to roam around a little bit more and take more opportunities offensively. At the same time that doesn’t mean your partner can skate around all over the place at free will. I think you still as a tandem have to be fairly good in your own end.”

The Stars have struggled in that last department. But they’re also in a window to win right now, as their offseason moves have illustrated.