As reported by CapFriendly on Tuesday afternoon, three players have signed PTOs today: goaltender Christopher Gibson with the Arizona Coyotes, center Nate Thompson with the Los Angeles Kings, and winger Daniel Sprong with the Seattle Kraken.
Given the tumultuous goaltending situation in Arizona, the 29-year-old Gibson could vie for a spot as a full-time backup for the first time in his long professional career. Originally a second-round draft pick of the Los Angeles Kings in 2011, he’s played professionally for the Toronto Maple Leafs, New York Islanders, Tampa Bay Lightning, and Florida Panthers organizations. He had a 7-5-3 record, .907 save percentage, and one shutout in just 14 games with the AHL’s Charlotte Checkers last season. While those totals may be low, he was a part of an uncomfortably crowded crease last season in Charlotte as they played home to both Panthers and Seattle Kraken prospects. He has a long history of strong minor-league play that may give him the inside track over the team’s other two backup options, Ivan Prosvetov and Jon Gillies.
Thompson, far and away one of the most seasoned players to sign a PTO this offseason, brings 844 games of NHL experience to Kings camp. While he did have just three points in 33 games with the Philadelphia Flyers last season and is a 13th forward at best at this point in his career, the 37-year-old Thompson could be a veteran anchor to help guide a youthful Kings’ bottom six, even if it is mainly from the press box. It could also be an inside track on a front office job for Thompson if he doesn’t make the team and opts for retirement instead.
The Kraken know what they’re getting in Sprong, who had six goals in 16 games for them last season after arriving at the Trade Deadline from the Washington Capitals. Seattle’s roster is more crowded this time around with multiple free agent and trade additions, especially on the wing, but he could bump some players like John Hayden and Karson Kuhlman onto the waiver wire and down to the AHL expansion Coachella Valley Firebirds if he makes the team and pushes for a spot at the bottom of the lineup with some power-play minutes.