Kukla's Korner Hockey
by Paul on 07/31/08 at 09:50 AM ET
from Don Brennan of the Ottawa Sun,
Unless a deal was reached late last night or one gets struck some time this morning—very much a possibility, either way—Antoine Vermette (and/or agent Allan Walsh) will today stand before an arbitrator opposite Senators GM Bryan Murray (and/or another team representative) as both sides pitch their case in a contract dispute over the worth of the 26-year-old forward….
The belief here is that Murray, outraged at the way the Senators disappeared meekly from the 2007-08 campaign, is still determined to do what he can to give the team more of a facelift. The belief here is that he has tried and will continue to try to peddle Vermette for a grittier player and, not wanting to be the Lightning north, attempt to give his team at least one defenceman with some offensive talents.
The belief here is that no matter what happens today, Vermette won’t be a Senator by the time the season starts.
update 10:05am, via the Ottawa Sun,
Antoine Vermette has avoided arbitration, the Sun has learned.
Sources say the Senators centre agreed to a two-year, $5.525 million contract this morning. He will make $2.525 million next season and $3 million in 2009-10.
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