With Drake Batherson now signed, the Senators can squarely turn their focus to getting a new deal done with RFA winger Brady Tkachuk. Speaking with reporters, including Postmedia’s Bruce Garrioch, GM Pierre Dorion declined to comment on the status of negotiations, only stating that “We’ve had productive, positive discussions with Brady’s camp” which would contrast a recent report from TSN1200’s Shawn Simpson who relayed (Twitter link) that there is some frustration setting in with Tkachuk’s camp.
The 21-year-old could be eyeing Andrei Svechnikov’s eight-year, $62MM deal with Carolina as a legitimate comparable contract which would make him Ottawa’s highest-paid forward but would still keep him below Thomas Chabot’s $8MM AAV for the highest-paid player on the team. As some of Ottawa’s top youngsters come up for new deals, trying to keep all of those below Chabot’s price tag would seem like a viable strategy for the Senators in an effort to keep their window for contention open as long as possible.
Elsewhere around the hockey world:
- Stars head coach Rick Bowness told Matthew DeFranks of the Dallas Morning News that forwards Tyler Seguin (hip and knee), Roope Hintz (groin), Alexander Radulov (core), and defenseman Joel Hanley (core) have all recovered from their respective injuries and surgeries and will be ready for training camp. Seguin, in particular, will be a welcome return as he was only able to suit up in three games last season, managing a pair of goals in those contests. They’re still not fully healthy, however, as there is plenty of uncertainty surrounding goalie Ben Bishop’s future which is why Braden Holtby was surprisingly signed in free agency this summer.
- While winger Conor Garland believed the Bruins might show interest in him, he told Matt Porter of the Boston Globe that his camp never heard from Boston when Arizona was shopping him around the league. The 25-year-old Scituate native had identified Boston, Toronto, and Los Angeles as potential fits but he wound up being moved to Vancouver instead where he quickly signed a five-year, $24.75MM contract. Garland wouldn’t rule out the idea of playing for his hometown team down the road but it won’t be happening anytime soon.
How great could bishop have been if he wasn’t hurt all the time