On the Olympics, Washington Capitals, Buffalo Sabres, Colorado Avalanche, Dallas Stars and Vegas Golden Knights …
Bruce Garrioch of the Ottawa Sun: Some are hoping there is another attempt between the IIHF, NHL and NHLPA to come to an agreement to go to the Winter Olympics next year. A meeting with all three parties was cancelled last week. The players want to go but the NHL doesn’t want to shut down. There is some talk that some owners may not stop their players for going to the Olympics – Washington Capitals owner Ted Leonsis has said he won’t get in Alex Ovechkin‘s way.
“We’ve started giving some thought to that. It’s certainly not an issue that we have to resolve today,” said Daly. “I would be surprised if allowed it to be club-by-club issue at this point. I think there will be a league response.”
There is some thought that if the Capitals do well in the playoffs, they might try to re-sign pending free agent defenseman Kevin Shattenkirk. It wouldn’t be easy for them to fit him under the salary cap. They could look to move defenseman Brooks Orpik and his $5.5 million cap hit that runs for another two years. He was a healthy scratch last week and won’t be easy to move. The New York Rangers remain the frontrunners to sign Shattenkirk. The Capitals also have to decide on UFA T.J. Oshie and RFA Dmitry Orlov.
Some league executives think Buffalo Sabres coach Dan Bylsma is on the hot seat despite having three years left on his deal. They will likely bring him back next year but they may need a good start to the season.
If Colorado Avalanche decide to retool and move Matt Duchene, the Avs also may need to look for a goaltender this offseason as Semyon Varlamov hasn’t done a good job. There should be lots of goalies available.
Lindy Ruff doesn’t have a contract with the Dallas Stars next year and it’s unlikely he’ll be back. Ruff could end up being a top candidate for the Vegas Golden Knights.