With some college hockey players, there is going to be a shred of uncertainty with their draft teams about whether or not that player will end up in their organization. Whether it’s Jimmy Vesey, Kevin Hayes or Blake Wheeler, there are more than a handful of examples of prominent college players that ended up eschewing the team that drafted them for free agency once their NCAA careers had finished. It’s a part of the CBA and it will always be a legit worry for players that outperform their draft status while in college, and that’s the way it will continue to be even as most players end up signing with their draft teams as Notre Dame winger Anders Bjork did with the B’s a couple of months ago.
From the sound of things, Kyle Okposo‘s presence at “Da Beauty League” was a beautiful sight for Buffalo Sabres teammates, former teammates on the New York Islanders, and friends around the NHL. NHL.com’s Jessi Pierce was at that informal game, which apparently didn’t go well for Okposo’s team. While Pierce noted that Okposo wasn’t comfortable answering questions during his first on-ice action in almost four months, it sounds like the talented winger was looking good on Wednesday night.
An arbitration hearing between the Detroit Red Wings and agents for Tomas Tatar is under way. The hearing was scheduled to start 9 a.m. in Toronto. The sides can continue to talk privately even as the hearing continues. Last year the Wings and the agent for Petr Mrazek were about an hour into an arbitration hearing when they reached a deal without the arbitrator. At 26, Tatar is a year from unrestricted free agency, which is why arbitration is locked into a one-year contract. The Wings offered $4.1 million in their arbitration brief. Tatar’s side asked for $5.3 million. An arbitrator is likely to land in the middle, around $4.8 million. That would come close to the $4.75 million average annual