While it has long been speculated that the Tampa Bay Lightning will have to move one of their two goalies in the near future, GM Steve Yzerman isn’t ruling out keeping both around in the hopes of having above average goaltending for every game this season, writes Joe Smith of the Tampa Bay Times.
After signing Andrei Vasilevskiy to a three year, $10.5MM extension that begins in 2017-18, Bishop has been speculated as being the odd one out. Those thoughts have become even more prevalent recently with the report that Bishop was close to being dealt to Calgary back at the draft. Yzerman did add that he expects both goalies to be available when they open their season on October 13th.
With Bishop projected to be the top goaltender in next summer’s UFA market, the Lightning could be faced with a situation where they lose him for nothing if they don’t trade him. However, as we saw last season with Steven Stamkos, Yzerman isn’t afraid to hold on to his pending free agents and use them as internal rentals to aid in what they hope to be a lengthy postseason run.
With the goalie market pretty well dried up at this point, they’ll likely have to wait until midseason to see if anyone struggles out of the gate or gets injured before determining whether or not it’s worth pursuing dealing Bishop who has been the Lightning’s starter each of the last three seasons.
Other news and notes from around the hockey world:
- Rangers center Oscar Lindberg has been skating for the past three weeks as he continues to rehab from hip surgery back in May, reports Newsday’s Steve Zipay. The 24 year old had a quality rookie campaign with New York last season, recording 13 goals and 15 assists in 68 games. With the team adding extra forward depth in players like Michael Grabner, Josh Jooris, Brandon Pirri, and Nathan Gerbe, Lindberg will be in a tough battle for a spot in the lineup when he returns to the lineup.
- Prosecutors have submitted additional evidence against Sabres winger Evander Kane in his pending court case, writes John Wawrow of the Associated Press. Kane is facing four counts of non-criminal harassment, one count of disorderly conduct, and one count of misdemeanour trespass. He pled not guilty to all charges back in August and is scheduled to next appear in ourt on October 31st.
- Chicago UFA winger Matt Fraser has signed a one year deal with Rogle BK of the SHL, the Swedish team announced (link in Swedish). The Blackhawks acquired him as part of the Andrew Ladd trade prior to the last trade deadline although he never got into a game with the team; he last suited up in the NHL in 2014-15 where he played 60 games between Edmonton and Boston. The Blackhawks declined to tender him a qualifying offer back in June.