This evening on Hockey Night in Canada’s 32 Thoughts segment, Sportsnet’s Elliotte Friedman discussed an update on Filip Forsberg’s contract extension talks, noting that Forsberg’s agent, J.P. Barry and Nashville Predators’ GM David Poille recently met face-to-face for the first time in a while. Friedman says that while it is difficult to gauge any progress on the talks, as nothing was made public from these discussions, the development is significant and represents the two sides continuing to talk.
Forsberg is an impending UFA, who the Predators chose not to trade at this year’s trade deadline, despite not having an extension in place with the forward. Part of the reason to hang onto Forsberg would be for Nashville to use him themselves in another playoff run, but also perhaps their confidence that they could get a deal done with Forsberg before he hits free agency. One advantage Nashville will have over other teams, besides an extended negotiating period and familiarity, is the ability to give Forsberg an eight-year contract as opposed to seven, something he will almost assuredly get.
- Also from Friedman is that a succession plan for NHLPA Director Donald Fehr could be in place by this summer, though Friedman adds he is not entirely sure what that will look like. Fehr has served in this role since 2010, after a storied career with the MLBPA, however his position has come under fire recently, especially with the release of the results of an independent investigation into the NHLPA and Fehr’s handling of the accusations against the Chicago Blackhawks and Brad Aldrich. The 73-year-old Fehr had already been rumored to be nearing retirement, so to see a succession plan being rumored now is not surprising, even with the investigation news.
- With the PWHPA planning to go their own way in forming a league without the PHF, Sportsnet’s Jeff Marek shares some details of what the new league will look like. First and foremost, Marek says that the league will have a new name, though what that will be is not yet known. The league’s first season will take place from January through April of 2023 and consists of 32 games per team, including six teams spread between the US and Canada. Each team is expected to have 23 players, with the minimum salary being $35K and the average salary being $55K, as well as benefits for all players. Without too many more pertinent details, it’s hard to forecast what this league and season will truly look like and what fans can expect, however having these basic plans in place is a promising step forward after talks between the PWHPA and PHF have not progressed to anything of note thus far.