The latest on the Kings’ Drew Doughty, the Panthers’ Shawn Matthias and Dmitry Kulikov, plus former Devils Jay Pandolfo might attempt a comeback with the Bruins.
LA KINGS INSIDER: Rich Hammond reports Kings GM Dean Lombardi yesterday said contract talks with Drew Doughty’s agents have continued over the past couple of days, and they’ll continue to try to work toward getting Doughty re-signed prior to the start of training camp.
SPECTOR’S NOTE: This could go right up to opening day of camp, but I expect Doughty will be re-signed by then, as will most, if not all, of the other remaining notable unsigned RFAs around the league.
MIAMI HERALD: George Richards reports Panthers assistant GM Mike Santos said Panthers forward Shawn Matthias and his agent can’t seem to grasp the idea the Panthers won’t be offering him a one-way contract for the upcoming season. Richards believes Matthias, a restricted free agent, doesn’t have much leverage and will have to bite the bullet and re-sign.Santos also suggested promising young blueliner Dmitry Kulikov wasn’t guaranteed a spot on the Panthers roster, noting he’s eligible to play in the AHL, too.
SPECTOR’S NOTE: Matthias has absolutely no leverage, unless he holds out for a trade, which probably isn’t such a good idea. As for Kulikov, I find Santos’ comments laughable. No way a kid this promising goes to the farm. I realize they’ve added Brian Campbell and Ed Jovanovski, and promising Erik Gudbranson will likely crack the roster, but Kulikov’s heading into his third NHL season, and while his defensive game still needs work, he’s proven he belongs at the NHL level. Trying to demote him would be dumb.
CSNNE.COM: Joe Haggerty reports several sources claim former long-time New Jersey Devils forward Jay Pandolfo could attempt a comeback this season with the Boston Bruins, as he’s been talking to the club about a training camp invitation.
SPECTOR’S NOTE: The NY Islanders have also reportedly reached out to Pandolfo. Should be interesting to see which club he accepts an invitation from, and if he can stick with them.