Senators winger Marian Gaborik was widely expected to be bought out this summer but he wasn’t in June during the buyout window nor was he released during the post-arbitration window either. GM Pierre Dorion told reporters, including Postmedia’s Bruce Garrioch, that the veteran has not yet received medical clearance after undergoing surgery to repair a herniated disc late last season. He’s not expected to be with the team at the start of training camp as he is currently in Los Angeles visiting with a back specialist. Dorion even acknowledged that there’s a chance that he may not play at all in 2018-19 which means the majority of his $4.875MM salary would be covered by insurance.
Elsewhere around the league:
- Ducks winger Nick Ritchie has somewhat flown under the radar compared to some of the more notable remaining restricted free agents. In an interview on Sportsnet 650 (audio link), Sportsnet’s Elliotte Friedman reports that it has been a “tough negotiation” between him and Anaheim thus far. Ritchie was the tenth overall pick back in 2014 but has yet to make a significant impact offensively. Last season, he had just 10 goals and 17 assists in 76 games while averaging just over 13 minutes of playing time per night. Unlike some of the more prominent remaining RFAs, the 22-year-old is almost certainly heading for a bridge contract.
- The Sharks have had discussions regarding a potential contract extension with center Joe Pavelski, GM Doug Wilson told Kevin Kurz of The Athletic (subscription required). The 34-year-old has seen his point production drop in each of the last two years but he still put up a solid 66 points (22-44-66) in 82 games last season. Pavelski has also been quite durable, missing just one game over the last five years which should help bolster his case for a new deal. He’s slated to earn $6MM in 2018-19 and should be in line for a small raise on his next contract.