Did you hear? Steven Stamkos is the “big fish” — the most coveted free agent this year, should he go to the open market on Friday. That said, another scoring forward that is garnering plenty of attention, as teams are now allowed to talk to pending unrestricted free agents, is Kyle Okposo, the 28-year-old right winger who has scored at least 20 goals in three of the last five seasons. In the final year of his five-year contract worth $14 million, Okposo scored 22 goals and 64 points this past season for the Islanders. It’s been no secret of late that the Islanders aren’t expected to re-sign Okposo, who is due for a substantial raise in free agency. The Sabres and Panthers would certainly make
Brad Treliving saw the rules for the expansion draft and immediately was in an advantageous position. The Calgary Flames' general manager needed a goaltender, and with Las Vegas set to harvest the NHL for two of them in a year, his colleagues had incentive to make a move. The Flames got Brian Elliott from the St. Louis Blues for a second-round pick. A full year before the Las Vegas expansion draft, GMs must plan for the inevitability of losing a player to a team that the league wants to be good out of the gate. Already the impact of the impending expansion draft has been felt with the Flames acquiring Elliott and the Toronto Maple Leafs getting goalie Frederik Andersen from the Anaheim Ducks.