Have the Canadiens made a contract offer to Andrei Markov? Does Pascal Leclaire intend to continue his NHL career? Does Curtis McElhinney hope to stay with the Senators? Read on for the latest.
MONTREAL GAZETTE/CANADIAN PRESS/RDS.CA: reported agent Don Meehan denied a radio report claiming his client Andrei Markov had received and rejected a one-year, $5.75 million contract offer from the Canadiens. Markov is eligible for unrestricted free agency this summer but Meehan claimed he and Canadiens GM Pierre Gauthier have agreed to deal with Markov’s contract status at the end of the season. The report had claimed the Markov camp was seeking a three-year contract.
SPECTOR’S NOTE: Markov’s been the Canadiens best defenseman in recent years but his recent knee injuries, the rise of rookie PK Subban and the addition of James Wisniewski could have an impact upon his future with the Habs. Factor in next season being the last one under this current CBA, and it’s possible the Canadiens could only offer up a one-or-two year extension at the same salary ($5.75 million per season) as they might wish to see how well he recovers from his knee injuries before committing long-term.
OTTAWA SUN/OTTAWA CITIZEN: report injury prone goaltender Pascal Leclaire’s time with the Senators may be over but he’s defiantly refusing to give up his hopes of continuing his NHL career, believing once he’s fully recovered from his leg injury he could sign with another NHL team for next season, claiming his injury hasn’t made him a bad goalie.
OTTAWA CITIZEN: Allen Panzeri reports well-traveled Senators backup Curtis McElhinney hopes to be re-signed by the Senators following this season.
SPECTOR’S NOTE: No one’s claiming Leclaire’s injuries have made him a bad goalie, they’re claiming those injuries are hampering his career. It’s not just his leg injury, it’s the host of injuries he’s had throughout his NHL career (knee, hamstring, thumb, neck, head, jaw, groin) that could kill his market value this summer. He’s yet to have an injury-free season, and when you’re that brittle, general managers tend to steer clear. That being said, he could have value as an affordable backup, but next summer’s goalie market will be awash in quality backups, so there’s no certainty Leclaire will find another NHL team. As for McElhinney, if he continues to play well over the remaining games he might play the odds are good he’ll return next season as the Senators backup.