There was a lot of quiet hope that when Ottawa star defenseman Erik Karlsson bought a new home in Ottawa back in August, that might suggest he intends to agree to a long-term extension when he’s eligible this year.
Don’t count on that, writes the Ottawa Sun’s Don Brennan.
Despite purchasing a new, expensive home in the Glebe before the season started, Karlsson suggested that has no meaning on his future. The 27-year-old will be a free agent in the 2018-19 offseason and constant rumors of whether he intends to stay in Ottawa have been talked about for months.
“I live here, and I’m going to live here no matter what,” Karlsson told Postmedia Saturday. “If not all year round, I’m going to live here during the summer. My wife is from here and this is where we’re set.”
- Adam Vingan of the Tennessean writes that while the Nashville Predators are open to signing top prospect and Finnish Olympian Eeli Tolvanen to an entry-level deal when his KHL season ends (anytime between early March and late April), don’t count on him making a major impact to the team. While Tolvanen, the team’s first-round pick in 2017, would be a cheaper alternative to making a major trade for a top-six forward, an 18-year-old likely will struggle initially, although a few players in similar situations fared well in the playoffs. He points out that Boston Bruins defenseman Charlie McAvoy had three assists in six first-round playoff games last year and the New York Rangers’ Chris Kreider did the same back in 2012 when he scored five goals in 18 postseason games.
- The Tampa Bay Lightning have scratched defenseman Jake Dotchin five times in the last six games. The young 23-year-old defenseman has often found himself on the team’s top defensive pairing in the past, but suddenly can’t get on the ice. According to Tampa Bay Times Joe Smith, head coach Jon Cooper said he has been struggling on the ice of late. “He’s got some inconsistencies in his game,” said Cooper. Dotchin has played in 43 games this season and has three goals and 11 assists.
- The Philadelphia Flyers may have just found themselves looking for a goaltender on the trade market after the team lost goaltender Michal Neuvirth to a lower-body injury during the first period in today’s game against the New York Rangers, according to Sportsnet’s John Shannon. While its too early to know whether Neuvirth will miss an extended amount of time, the team already lost goaltender Brian Elliott for five weeks after undergoing core muscle surgery last week.
- The New York Islanders also may have some goaltending problems as goaltender Thomas Greiss, who just came off his best game of the season Friday when he shutout the Carolina Hurricanes, did not practice today as he tweaked something. “He just tweaked something,” said head coach Doug Weight. “We’re going to have it looked at and make a final ruling here moving forward. We’re prepared for anything. Obviously Bridgeport is close so if we need to do something for tomorrow we’ll be fine.” If the injury is serious, the Islanders might also be looking for a goaltender at the trade deadline.