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Report: Bobrovsky, Blue Jackets closing in on two-year deal

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By Allan Muir

UPDATE: Multiple reports suggest the stalemate has been broken and the two sides are closing in on a deal that could be announced before the start of the draft. Possibility of a sign-and-trade still in play. Stay tuned.

This probably shouldn’t come as a surprise, but the Columbus Blue Jackets and Sergei Bobrovsky have very different opinions about his value to the team moving forward. And it appears that difference may lead to a parting of the ways. TSN’s Darren Dreger says the Jackets have put Bobrovsky on the market and are looking for his replacement.

Bobrovsky, who becomes a restricted free agent on July 5, is coming off a Vezina Trophy-season that was as unexpected as any award win in recent memory. It’s fair to say that he was the single most important factor in a thrilling season that saw Columbus contend for a playoff spot right until the last weekend. Turns out he’s pretty proud of those accomplishments. $6 million proud.

The Blue Jackets, understandably, don’t share that inflated view. No argument Bobrovsky is coming off a remarkable campaign, but he was lousy the season prior and only fair the year before that. Hardly the sort of track record that would justify such a lavish commitment.

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  • Published On Jun 30, 2013
  • Pavel Datsyuk’s extension with Red Wings a new kick in the rubles for KHL

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    Pavel Datsuk signed a new contract extension with the Detroit Red Wings

    The KHL will have to wait until Pavel Datsyuk is 40 if it wants him as a marquee star. (Tom Szczerbowski/Getty Images)

    By Allan Muir

    Pavel Datsyuk may have been speaking from the heart when he talked about how much fun he had playing back home in Russia during the lockout. “This is my goal [to end my career in the KHL], but you never know how it goes,” he said. “I would love to finish there, give back to my friends and fans in Russia [while] I hope I’ll be in good shape.”

    But by the end of the season, he was coming from a much more pragmatic place when he voiced a wish to stay in Detroit. “Yeah, I hope we sign a new deal. I hope we agree and I sign for more [years],” he said as the Red Wings cleaned out their lockers.

    And so it was no surprise when Datsyuk tweeted today that he’d come to terms on a three-year extension that will earn him $23 million and keep him with the Wings through the 2016-17 season.

    It’s a win for both sides. Datsyuk will be paid $10 million the first year, $7.5 million the second, and $5.5 million the third, with a cap hit of $7.5 million that’s more than manageable for Wings and a fair payday for a player who led the team in scoring this past season. Big smiles all around.

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  • Published On Jun 18, 2013
  • Sidney Crosby, Alex Ovechkin and John Tavares are 2013 Hart Trophy finalists

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    Sidney Crosby, Alex Ovechkin and John Tavares are the NHL's 2013 Hart Trophy nominees

    There are compelling cases to be made for all three of this season’s Hart Trophy nominees. (AP/AP/Icon SMI)

    By Allan Muir

    There really ought to be an asterisk on the Hart Trophy to designate the years in which it is awarded to the NHL’s best player instead of, as stipulated by the rules, “the player adjudged to be most valuable to his team.”

    Some years, that player is one and the same. This won’t be one of those years because Sergei Bobrovsky isn’t among the finalists. And there is no one in this league who more demonstrably had a greater impact on his team’s fortunes than Bob.

    That’s not to overlook the achievements of the three players who made the cut: Pittsburgh’s Sidney Crosby, Alex Ovechkin of Washington, and New York Islanders’ star John Tavares. You can make a solid argument for any of them as the league’s top performer.

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  • Published On May 10, 2013


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