Reaction to P.K. Subban’s arbitration hearing, plus the latest on the Jets and Canucks.
MONTREAL GAZETTE: Pat Hickey reports P.K. Subban’s feel-good story since being drafted by the Canadiens took an ugly turn yesterday when the two sides went to salary arbitration. It could damage Subban’s relationship with Canadiens management and jeopardize the possibility of re-signing him to a long-term contract.
CBC.CA: Elliotte Friedman believes the contract stalemate between Subban and the Canadiens turned personal by going to arbitration. Friedman wonders if the Habs are trying to re-sign Subban at a discount or if they still have doubts about his game. He believes this will cost the Canadiens more than they expected or wanted. Friedman points out the two sides can step back and discuss a contract extension after January 1, but the Canadiens simply cannot allow Subban to start 2015-16 without a long-term deal.
Subban can accept Montreal’s offer next summer, but being a year away from UFA status Friedman notes “history says that’s unlikely.” He feels Canadiens management have four choices: ” It can accept the award and sit for a while. It can offer Subban eight years at what he wants. It can offer him a four-year deal at $34-$38 million and say, “Worst comes to worst, you hit the market again at age 29 with a higher cap.” Or it trades him.”
SPORTSNET: Chris Johnston believes the Subban camp is negotiating with a larger plan in mind, looking toward his UFA eligibility in two years times. He believes GM Marc Bergevin intended to get a deal done and was frustrated by having to go through arbitration with the Subban camp. Bergevin and company believed an 11th-hour deal was possible. Johnston notes there’s still plenty of time to get Subban re-signed to a long-term extension before his eligibility for UFA status in 2016.
CTV NEWS: Fans and pundits were dismayed by the Subban arbitration hearing.
SPECTOR’S NOTE: I never expected it would take arbitration to settle Subban’s contract impasse and believed they would announce a long-term deal yesterday. I’ll have my take on this later today in my “Soapbox”.
WINNIPEG FREE PRESS: The Jets signed former Calgary Flames winger T.J. Galiardi to a one-year, two-way contract worth $750K at the NHL level.
VANCOUVER SUN: The Canucks hired Ben Cooper as their new video coach.