from Elliotte Friedman of Sportsnet,
- Right before the Beijing Olympics, the KHL cancelled the remainder of the regular season, going directly to the playoffs starting March 1. The official reason was COVID, but the possibility of an invasion into Ukraine was on everyone’s mind.
I counted 23 Canadians and five Americans on playoff rosters. Several politely declined to discuss their feelings — even privately — knowing dissent isn’t tolerated, especially now. One agent wouldn’t allow a client of his to speak on or off the record.
Two did agree to talk, with one saying simply, “I’m considering coming back (to North America),” although he hadn’t made a final decision. The other said, via text, that he will play.
“If guys decide to play, it is to provide for their families,” he said. “I hope people understand that. If they quit, they don’t get paid.”
- The Nashville Predators know that to re-sign Filip Forsberg, the AAV must be higher than Matt Duchene/Ryan Johansen’s $8M figure. Forsberg knows that, if he wants to stay in Tennessee, he’s going to have to come in lower than Roman Josi’s $9.059M. I wouldn’t be surprised if Forsberg initially asked higher — you don’t negotiate against yourself — but that’s where everyone’s got to get to: the sweet spot between those two numbers. (Plus structure and no-trade protection.) There’s time. I believe there is a will for both sides to get there. If we get to the deadline and the Predators don’t believe they can sign him, that’s when a trade becomes possible. GM David Poile could keep an unsigned Forsberg past March 21, but it’s not his preference, and won’t happen if progress isn’t being made.
- I can see Philadelphia in on Jeff Petry. It makes a lot of sense for them.