While he might soak up more of the headlines, Alex DeBrincat isn’t the only Ottawa Senator on playing expiring contract. Defenseman Artem Zub, a fan favorite in Ottawa, is a pending unrestricted free agent, and most believe that he is sure to get a sizeable raise on his current $2.5MM cap hit. Zub, 27, is in his third season in the NHL and is now playing top-pairing minutes next to franchise defenseman Thomas Chabot. Zub has gotten off to a hot start this year with two points in three games, and is sure to want to put the best platform season forward as he readies for a potential trip to the unrestricted free agent market.
According to TSN’s Chris Johnston on tonight’s Insider Trading program, he may get to the market, and if he does, he’s unlikely to stick around long. Johnston reports that there haven’t been substantive extension talks between the Senators and Zub, and if Zub does indeed hit the open market he “won’t be an easy player” for the Senators to keep. It’s expected that there will be leaguewide interest in acquiring Zub’s services should he hit the open market, so if the Senators wish to keep their budding star it might be best for them to hammer out an extension sooner rather than later.
For some other notes from across the NHL:
- Colorado Avalanche head coach Jared Bednar issued an update today on defenseman Devon Toews. As relayed by the Denver Gazette’s Kyle Fredrickson, Bednar says Toews is being evaluated for an injury and his status for tomorrow’s game against the Seattle Kraken is unknown. The Avalanche recently found out that they’d be without captain Gabriel Landeskog for quite a while, so they have to be hoping that whatever Toews is dealing with won’t keep him out for long.
- In other Avalanche news, the team announced today that forward Jayson Megna had been recalled from their AHL affiliate, the Colorado Eagles. As The Athletic’s Peter Baugh detailed, Megna was only sent down for cap purposes and his recall was expected. The Avalanche are one of the many teams trying to manage with extremely limited cap space, so paper transactions such as this are likely to become more common as the season wears on.