Posts Tagged ‘Contract Signing’

The first season of Seth Jones‘ eight-year, $76-million megadeal is about to begin, but the Chicago Blackhawks aren’t quite where the defenseman thought they would be when he signed last July.

“It was a little frustrating to see (the trades this summer) at first. It’s not really what I or anybody had in mind, looking back a couple years,” Jones said, according to the Chicago Sun-Times’ Ben Pope. “But it is what it is. It’s going to make a lot of us better in here. We’ll be patient with each other and help each other through this.”

He added, “I don’t have any regrets.”

The Blackhawks’ last two offseasons have been radically different. In 2021, Chicago made a series of splashy moves and seemed poised to make a push up the Central Division standings. The organization traded for Jones then signed him to a hefty extension, and they picked up veteran goaltender Marc-Andre Fleury from the Vegas Golden Knights.

The wheels swiftly fell off, though. The Blackhawks went 1-9-2 to begin 2021-22 and fired head coach Jeremy Colliton in early November. Far out of the playoff picture at the trade deadline in March, Chicago dealt Fleury to the Minnesota Wild and sent talented young forward Brandon Hagel to the Tampa Bay Lightning.

The Blackhawks ended last season in seventh place in the Central Division with a 28-42-12 record, and the losses continued this summer. Chicago moved on from Alex DeBrincatKirby DachDominik Kubalik, and Dylan Strome, while the futures of franchise mainstays Jonathan Toews and Patrick Kane are hazy at best.

In the midst of all the turnover that comes with a rebuild, Jones said he’s focusing on the “bigger picture.”

“Patience is going to be important this year. At the same time, we’re going into every game trying to win,” he said. “We’re going to have to be a disciplined, structured team this year (and) make sure teams earn their wins and goals against us.”

Jones, 27, posted five goals and 46 assists in 78 games during his first season in Chicago. He averaged a career-high 26:13 of ice time per contest, the most on the team.

Saraya, formerly known as Paige in WWE, is All Elite after a shocking debut at AEW Dynamite Grand Slam on Wednesday night.

The Anti-Diva made her AEW bow after the conclusion of four-way match for the Interim AEW Women’s World Championship, saving Toni Storm and Athena from a beatdown at the hands of Dr. Britt Baker DMD, Jamie Hayter, and Serena Deeb.

Saraya’s WWE contract expired in July, ending her 11-year tenure with the company. A former NXT Women’s Champion and two-time Divas Champion, Saraya’s in-ring career was cut short by neck injuries, including a final blow that came at a December 2017 house show, which was her last match to date. After that, she served in multiple on-camera roles, including SmackDown GM, manager of the Kabuki Warriors, and a contributor for WWE Backstage.

Her debut at Grand Slam sent fans into a frenzy at the surprise appearance and immediately thrust her right into the thick of things, seemingly aligned with Storm and Athena against Baker and her cronies.

It’s unclear whether Saraya will get back into the ring to wrestle – she did not do anything physical Wednesday – or if she will serve in a different on-air capacity, but her appearance was a true feel-good moment for a company that needed news like this after a bunch of bad personnel publicity recently.

Jason Pierre-Paul is joining the Baltimore Ravens, the free-agent defensive end told CBS Sports’ Josina Anderson.

The former All-Pro pass-rusher will sign a one-year deal worth up to $5.5 million, according to NFL Network’s Ian Rapoport.

Pierre-Paul’s signing comes after his second visit to the Ravens’ facility since June. His addition bolsters a beleaguered Baltimore defense that recently placed Steven Means on season-ending injured reserve.

Pierre-Paul spent the past four seasons with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, with whom he won his second Super Bowl ring in 2020. He recorded 31 tackles, five quarterback hits, and 2.5 sacks in 12 games last campaign.

The New York Giants drafted Pierre-Paul in the first round of the 2010 draft. He earned two of his three career Pro Bowl nods with the Giants.

The 33-year-old defender joins a Ravens defensive line group that features Justin HoustonCalais Campbell, and Odafe Oweh.

Baltimore will look to go to 2-1 in its Week 3 road matchup against the New England Patriots.

The New York Giants are signing veteran linebacker Jaylon Smith, his agent announced Monday.

Smith returns to the Giants after playing in four games and making two starts in 2021 for the team. He tallied 19 tackles, one sack, and one tackle for loss for New York last season.

The 27-year-old will join the team’s practice squad, according to The Record Sports’ Art Stapleton.

The Dallas Cowboys drafted the Notre Dame product in the second round in 2016. Smith played four seasons with the Cowboys before they released him last October. He signed with the Green Bay Packers shortly after but was released after two games and joined the Giants’ practice roster.

Smith has recorded 536 tackles, 21 tackles for loss, and 10 sacks over his career.

Dennis Schroder is returning to Hollywood.

The free-agent guard confirmed on social media that he is signing a deal to return to the Los Angeles Lakers.

Schroder will pen a one-year, $2.6-million contract, sources told The Athletic’s Shams Charania.

The 29-year-old German ball-handler previously played for the franchise during the 2020-21 season, averaging 15.4 points, 5.8 assists, 3.5 rebounds, and 1.1 steals in 61 games as the Lakers’ starting point guard. He became a free agent the following summer, eventually inking a one-year deal with the Boston Celtics after L.A. traded for Russell Westbrook, who remains on the roster.

The Lakers now have an abundance of point guards as they prepare for training camp. Along with Schroder and Westbrook, the franchise also pried recent trade acquisition Patrick Beverley from the Utah Jazz in late August. Former All-Rookie first-teamer Kendrick Nunn is also expected to return after missing all of last season with a bone bruise in his knee.

Schroder’s agent Mark Bartelstein said the Lakers informed him “there will be a lot of minutes for everybody,” according to NBA.com’s Mark Medina.

Though Germany’s EuroBasket campaign came to an end Friday with a loss to Spain in the semifinals, Schroder led the national side with 21.6 points and 7.3 assists per game across seven appearances. Germany’s run to the semifinals will ensure one of the country’s best-ever results at EuroBasket behind a silver medal in 2005 and gold on home soil in 1993.

The Montreal Canadiens signed restricted free-agent goaltender Cayden Primeau to a three-year, one-way pact Thursday with an average annual value of $890,000.

Primeau, 23, was the last RFA remaining on the Habs’ books. He will remain an RFA once his new pact expires.

The Michigan native appeared in 12 contests for the struggling Canadiens in 2021-22, posting a 1-7-1 record alongside a 4.62 goals against average and .868 save percentage.

Primeau spent the majority of the season with the AHL’s Laval Rocket, where he put up a 16-12-3 record and a .909 clip in 33 outings. He went on to author a sterling .936 save percentage in 14 playoff games to help the Rocket make the AHL’s Eastern Conference Final.

With Carey Price largely expected to miss the 2022-23 campaign, Montreal will now be relying on Jake AllenSamuel Montembeault, and Primeau to tend the crease.

The Canadiens selected him in the seventh round of the 2017 draft. Primeau owns a career 4.21 goals against average and .874 save percentage in 18 showings across three NHL seasons.

The Montreal Canadiens and restricted free-agent center Kirby Dach agreed to a four-year contract with an average annual value of $3.36 million on Wednesday.

Dach will still be a restricted free agent once his new pact expires.

The Habs acquired Dach from the Chicago Blackhawks in a three-way trade during the first round of the 2022 NHL Draft in July.

Montreal sent defenseman Alexander Romanov and the 98th overall pick to the New York Islanders in exchange for the 13th overall selection. The Canadiens then flipped the 13th and 66th overall picks to the Blackhawks.

The 21-year-old, who the Blackhawks selected third overall in the 2019 draft, has yet to make his mark in the NHL. Dach suited up for a career-high 70 games in 2021-22, mustering nine goals and 17 assists while averaging just over 18 minutes of ice time per contest. Dach also struggled in the faceoff circle – he won just 32.8% of his draws this past season.

All in all, Dach has logged 19 goals and 40 assists in 152 career contests, all with the Blackhawks.

The Alberta native said joining the Canadiens is a bit of a “restart” for his game after an underwhelming three seasons in Chicago.

“I’ve talked to (head coach Martin St. Louis) a few times about just coming here and playing with an open mind,” Dach said during a press conference Wednesday. “Just being ready when camp starts and kind of prove myself and enjoy the game of hockey again. Play some good games and see where it takes me.”

General manager Kent Hughes is hoping a change of scenery will be just what Dach needs to get on the right track.

“There’s no such thing as being 100% certain in this business, but we believe he’s got a lot of potential,” Hughes said. “We believe in this environment, with our group, with our coach, with our development group, and the character of the locker room that this is a better environment for Kirby Dach. … We’re prepared to bet on it.”

Injuries have sidetracked Dach’s young career: He broke his wrist while serving as Team Canada’s captain at the 2021 IIHF World Junior Championship and was only able to suit up for 18 NHL games during the shortened 2020-21 campaign.

The move put the Canadiens around $10.2 million over the cap, according to CapFriendly. However, Hughes confirmed Wednesday that the Habs have placed injured goaltender Carey Price on offseason long-term injured reserve, bringing them right under the salary cap, TSN’s John Lu reports.

Hughes said the Habs are inching closer to getting a deal done with goaltender Cayden Primeau, the team’s sole remaining restricted free agent.

The Philadelphia 76ers are signing center Montrezl Harrell to a two-year, $5.2-million contract, sources told ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski.

The contract reportedly contains a player option.

Sixers bench boss Doc Rivers coached Harrell on the Los Angeles Clippers where the big man won Sixth Man of the Year in the 2019-20 season, averaging 18.6 points and 7.1 rebounds off the bench.

Philadelphia ranked 28th in bench scoring last season, just behind the Chicago Bulls and Toronto Raptors.

Harrell split last season between the Washington Wizards and Charlotte Hornets, averaging 13.1 points and 6.1 rebounds while shooting 64.5% from the field in 71 contests.

The Sixers haven’t found a consistent backup to franchise cornerstone Joel Embiid, cycling between former All-Stars Andre Drummond, Dwight Howard, and DeAndre Jordan.

Harrell was charged with marijuana trafficking in May, which was reduced to misdemeanor possession at the end of August. The charge will be expunged from the 28-year-old’s record if he avoids additional legal trouble for 12 months.

The 76ers added defensive-minded forwards and former Houston Rokcets pair Danuel House and P.J. Tucker earlier in the offseason.

Ryan Murray signed a one-year, $750,000 contract with the Edmonton Oilers on Friday.

The 28-year-old defenseman had four assists in 37 regular-season games for the Colorado Avalanche, who won the Stanley Cup last season. He did not play in the Stanley Cup Playoffs.

Murray will join a group of players that includes Philip BrobergVincent DesharnaisMarkus Niemelainen and Dmitri Samorukov in competing a spot in the Oilers’ top six at defenseman. Duncan Keith retired July 12, but Edmonton will return its other top five defensemen from last season: Darnell NurseTyson BarrieBrett KulakEvan Bouchard and Cody Ceci.

Selected by the Columbus Blue Jackets with the No. 2 pick in the 2012 NHL Draft, Murray has 128 points (15 goals, 113 assists) in 432 regular-season games for the Avalanche, New Jersey Devils and Blue Jackets, and three points (one goal, two assists) in 20 playoff games.

The Ottawa Senators signed restricted free-agent defenseman Erik Brannstrom to a one-year deal worth $900,000 on Monday.

He will once again be a restricted free agent when the contract expires.

Brannstrom, 23, suited up for a career-high 53 contests in 2021-22 and pitched in with 14 assists. He averaged 19:46 of ice time per night – a more than 3-minute increase from the 2020-21 campaign – and saw more time on the power play and penalty kill.

“Erik is among our group of young players who we’re looking upon to take another step forward next season,” Senators general manager Pierre Dorion said. “He’s competitive, has an ability to efficiently move the puck, and showed well when asked to take on an increased role last season. We’re hopeful that experience pays dividends for him.”

The Swede was drafted 15th overall in 2017 by the Vegas Golden Knights, but the Senators acquired him as part of the trade that sent Mark Stone to Sin City in February 2019.

Brannstrom has two goals and 29 assists in 116 career NHL games, all with the Senators.

The Senators have one more restricted free agent remaining on their books in Alex Formenton, but Dorion told TSN in late August that he expected to complete the Brannstrom and Formenton deals by training camp.

Ottawa has about $7 million in projected cap space, according to CapFriendly.