Ottawa’s failed arena deal has taken another twist. Postmedia’s James Bagnall notes that team owner Eugene Melnyk and the RendezVous LeBreton group have agreed to go to mediation in advance of January 19th, the date that the National Capital Commission (NCC) has set before they look into alternative developments for the desired piece of land. Talks are scheduled to begin this week. The Senators have been looking for a new downtown arena and while they had a deal in place, things fell apart late last year with Melnyk filing a lawsuit against the RendezVous group while they, in turn, filed a counterclaim. Even if they can reach an agreement through mediation, they’ll still need to convince the NCC that this one will last and not fall apart down the road as the original one did.
Elsewhere around the East:
- Red Wings defenseman Mike Green has resumed skating but is still likely a week or more away from returning to the lineup, reports Ted Kulfan of The Detroit News. The veteran has been quite productive in limited action this season with 16 points in just 23 games and Detroit has struggled considerably without him in the lineup. Following their loss to Washington today, the Wings are just 3-13-5 when Green doesn’t suit up. Meanwhile, MLive’s Ansar Khan adds (Twitter link) that rookie winger Michael Rasmussen, who missed today’s game with a lower-body injury, will not play Tuesday against Montreal but is expected to be available to return by the weekend.
- Larry Brooks of the New York Post suggests that Rangers center Kevin Hayes may be the best rental player available between now and the trade deadline. The 26-year-old has been viewed as a trade candidate ever since he signed a one-year, $5.175MM contract last summer and he has responded with a career year, posting 33 points in 39 games. However, he is dealing with a lingering injury that has held him out of the lineup for the last two games which may give teams some pause for the time being.