After a couple weeks of nothing to report aside from minor deals and signings following the opening of NHL free agency, it would seem the floodgates have opened today, if only briefly. Ilya Kovalchuk signed a monster 17-year deal to remain with the New Jersey Devils today--leaving many fans wondering where the cash to re-sign Zach Parise will come from--and the Lightning landed former Flyer Simon Gagne in exchange for defenceman Matt Walker and a 4th round pick in next year's draft. Meanwhile, the Flames have been busy locking up their RFAs; Kris Chucko, Gord Baldwin, Matt Keetley, and Matt Pelech have all been signed and Gaelan Patterson has also been inked to his first entry-level deal with the club, which now has 44 players under contract for next season [Cap Geek]. With both the Heat and the Flames' rosters beginning to take shape, the next step is prospect camp, beginning next week. I hope to be able to attend a few sessions and report back on my findings if it fits my schedule. Stay tuned for updates!
Links after the jump.
What will the fall-out of Kovalchuck's enormous deal be, if any? [The Hockey Writers]
Leafs fans react to the new that Kovy won't be representing the blue & white next season [Pension Plan Puppets]
Gabe from Behind the Net is very confused about the Flyers' activity this summer, and he's not the only one
The week ahead at Dome Beers
Arik shares the story of how building good karma can result in encounters with NHL stars [4th Line Blog]
Tyler looks at going "off the board" at the draft and the players such a strategy produces [Mc79hockey]
And lastly, to go out on a warm and fuzzy note, the Abbotsford Heat and their fans raised $2,131 for the local KidSport chapter this past season, a charity which allows children to participate in organized sports when their families wouldn't be able to finance it otherwise. Way to go Baby Flames! [Abbotsford Heat]
Happy Monday everyone, I promise to do my best to keep you at least moderately entertained with some actual content this week.