On the Tampa Bay Lightning …
Joe Smith of the Tampa Bay Times: Both Tyler Johnson and Ondrej Palat filed for salary arbitration, but there is still plenty of time for the Lightning to sign them. Hearing will be scheduled for late July/early August.
The Lightning have over $13.5 million on salary cap space and it doesn’t sound like they are far apart on a deal.
[Smith] thinks that Johnson could sign a deal around $5 million a season, with Palat coming in a little lower.
GM Steve Yzerman had term in mind when dealing with free agency this year.
“It’s hard to make long-term commitments,” Yzerman said Saturday. “We can only do that with so many players. We’ve done that with a few of our guys. And we’re looking at contracts for Palat and Johnson, and not too far away is (Nikita Kucherov) and after him is (goalie Andrei Vasilevskiy). So you have to keep those things in mind. In the interim we needed some players on shorter-term contracts and that was the direction we went here.”.
On the Buffalo Sabres …
“Yeah, it seems more likely – but again, there’s still time,” noted Dreger. “If there’s a team out there that maybe didn’t get the forward that they were hoping, then perhaps they take a bit of a chance on Evander Kane. I still think that he’s a capable player. And if the worst is behind him in terms of some of the off-ice nonsense, then he can be the player that I’m describing. I think that teams do have an appreciation for that.”
Teams that had shown some interest in trading for him earlier were teams in the win-now mode. [Dreger] isn’t sure which teams were interested, but the Dallas Stars are in win-now mode. [Dreger] adds the San Jose Sharks and Anaheim Ducks as two other teams.
“But there’s been tire-kicking, I would say, for the last few months now with Kane in Buffalo and nothing has materialized, so it may take awhile longer.”