In an otherwise slow off season, today was jam packed with news (I really hope I won't have to edit this at the end of the day) so here it goes...
Willie MItchell ended days of speculation today by signing with the LA Kings The Victoria Times Colonist has it listed as a 2 year 7 mill deal ($3.5mil per year) I like this move, a little bit of an overpayment with Mitchell only playing 48 games last year due to concussion problems. As we saw last year against the Blackhawks, the team missed his muscle in front of the net. Mitchell is only going to help the Kings in this department which is otherwise a 'offence first' unit.
Fellow UFA Raffi Torres signed with the Canucks. A 1 yr/1 mill deal for a player who, frankly, did shit for the Sabres during the stretch and playoffs. Granted, his best years are behind him. remember this. Without Torres, the Canucks had their cap at 62.04 mil. they're now $3,658,333 over. (thanks nucks misconduct) it'll be interesting to see where they go from here.
The NHLPA may have finally picked a leader. reports say that Donald Fehr has agreed to lead the PA. I have zero idea if this is a good or bad or meh thing, so I asked fellow blogger Jibblescribbits for his take
"NHL needs a strong PA (something they haven’t had in a REALLY long time) and Fehr will make it strong.
And people worry about a strike, but in ’01 (after the devastating baseball strike) he understood that it was in the players best interest to get a deal done with the league. I think the NHL is in the same position now and that he (and the league) understand that a strike/lock-out would be devastating.
I hope it’s a short term kind of thing though. I am ok with him there for the next CBA negotiations, but anything longer than 5-6 years makes me nervous. I don’t really trust him that much, but the NHLPA needed an outsider to come in, and set up some sort of leadership structure that doesn’t involve a battle royal for the conch shell."
ESPN tells us that Stan Kroenke's bid to buy the St. Louis Rams has been approved. One problem. Stan also owns the Avs and the NBA's Denver Nuggets. The NFL doesn't allow 'cross sport ownership' and both the Avs and Nugs will be passed down to Stan's son Josh. The former Missouri b-ball player will serve as the Avs governor and set the budget.
Biggest question in my mind, will the purse strings loosen? Was it up to Stan how much of the budget was used towards free agents? Will the Nugg's get more love than the Avs? Will Son of Stan keep with the rebuild or blow it open?