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Islanders News: John Tavares, free agent of mystery

The NHL stood still waiting for the captain’s decision.

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Arizona Coyotes v New York Islanders
Are we giving you high fives or waving goodbye? Pls txt.
Photo by Bruce Bennett/Getty Images

Go see a play. Go hit the beach. Turn off your phone. Enjoy a Saturday.

Because if John Tavares has good news and you miss it, you’ll still be delighted whenever you find out. And if it’s bad news? You’ll be glad you did something else.

Friday was a thread-busting, traffic-heavy day around here, an example of the activity in all of Islanders-dom, and ... nothing happened. I mean, not even news about Tavares, really. Christopher Gibson and Seth Helgeson re-signing two-way deals was the extent of actual news on a traffic-peak kind of day.

That’s how absurd Friday was. So Saturday is...another day.

Islanders Reading

  • Dan has all your updates on The Situation. As of last night, the word was none of the six teams had been told no. I am not enthused. [LHH Tavares Contract Encyclopedia]
  • All was quiet, and that feels increasingly ominous, but Tavares has always been the private, no cards shown sort. [Newsday] (Also: Joshua Ho-Sang was not made available to media at mini-camp.)
  • Our thread of waiting and discussing, it got 1300 comments full. So we started a new one.
  • Elliotte Friedman’s gut still said Tavares, but... [Sportsnet]
  • On the lighter side: Maybe Tavares can sign a groundbreaking, multi-team contract to experience all of the benefits each of these teams is pitching. [Zeitgeist Fanpost]
  • So but Gibson and Helgeson signed two-year deals, both with healthy AHL vet salaries, a first in Gibson’s case. [LHH | Soundin’ Off]
  • Meanwhile, Kevin Weekes reports four teams are interested in Jaroslav Halak. [Twitter]
  • Thomas Hickey and Calvin de Haan getting interest too? Well Mitch Vande Sompel would like to be part of the replacement wave. [Newsday]
  • Get to know Yannick Rathgeb, the Swiss player the Isles signed this spring. [CT Post]


As if there is an elsewhere?! Well, actually some significant news.

  • The Kings agreed to terms with Drew Doughty on an eight-year deal (and then their social media trolled the Isles, which, a bit of a dick move).
  • Almost an afterthought yesterday, especially since it was assumed, but the Capitals did name Todd Reirden as Barry Trotz’s replacement. I remember him as a player under Joel Quenneville, and yes I feel old. [Capitals]
  • Rick Tocchet thought it was pretty stupid for players to come out of the locker room to see individual trophies their team has never won, so he went all Gorbachev and tore down that wall. [AZ Central]
  • Voices of the Game: Chris Watkins. Good interview on inclusion in hockey, and the hills it still needs to climb. [Raw Charge]
  • Puckpedia has salary cap/contract info...and agent info too. I guess Tavares agent Pat Brisson has like a Belfour’s worth of dollars represented. [Puckpedia]
  • Who’s under pressure as free agency begins? The obvious ones, but if Carter Hutton goes to Buffalo, man that is high-risk, high-reward. [ESPN]
  • All of the reasons that the recently unveiled Hurricanes and Coyotes jerseys are good ideas executed poorly. [Hockey By Design]