Boston Globe beat man Fluto Shinzawa looks at the summer’s unfinished business, including the chain of events that will be triggered by Mats Sundin’s decision:
First, the free-spending general managers of the league – some NHL personnel consider Boston boss Peter Chiarelli among this bunch for throwing $12 million at Michael Ryder – have put some clubs over or near the $56.7 million cap ceiling, which guarantees shifting of salaries prior to the 2008-09 season.
Anaheim will most assuredly move defenseman Mathieu Schneider, his puck-moving abilities, and his $5.625 million contract to a club that can absorb such a cap hit. Chicago will undoubtedly move goalie Nikolai Khabibulin’s $6.75 million salary, especially with newbie Cristobal Huet ($22.5 million over four years) expected to grab the No. 1 job. Ex-Bruin Mike Knuble, entering the final year of his contract (a mere $2.8 million per season), might be up for grabs for a club seeking a power forward.
Second, Mats Sundin has pledged to make a decision on his future by Friday, which should let loose a torrent of activity for the clubs that lose out on the pivot’s services – if, in fact, the big Swede decides to return to the NHL.
• • •
Frequent poster Sidhu sends a YouTube link to a lovely feature on Georges Laraque, produced when he was in Edmonton.
Interesting to hear Laraque talk about the influence of Jackie Robinson on his life. (1955 photo by Ralph Morse)
• • •
What are you doing at 7:30 p.m. on Boxing Day?
Canada vs. the Czech Republic at the World Juniors in Ottawa.