What will the Maple Leafs do with Mitch Marner?
The Hockey News: Mitch Marner is having a great pre-season with 8 points in 3 games. Former hockey player and now radio analyst Marc Savard states that the Toronto Maple Leafs should forget about focusing their efforts on signing William Nylander and get Marner under contract before he ends up costing the organization $10 million a year.
The only problem is that ship may have already sailed. At this point, amid rumblings that the Marner camp will not sign a deal until after this season, it’s hard to imagine the Leafs could get him under contract for less than that on a long-term deal.
It really makes no sense for Marner to sign now. In his first two seasons in the NHL, he has scored 130 points, two fewer than Auston Matthews in 15 more games. And even with all the hype surrounding Matthews and John Tavares this season, there is a very real possibility Marner could lead this team in scoring if he’s healthy for all 82 games.
It will be fascinating to watch as the season unfolds. And the more Marner accomplishes, the more perilous the situation will potentially get.
Columbus will not trade Artemi Panarin
The Score: As a season filled with uncertainty surrounding Artemi Panarin’s future draws near, don’t count on Columbus Blue Jackets general manager Jarmo Kekalainen rushing to move his superstar winger.
Panarin is scheduled to become an unrestricted free agent in July 2019, and he’s already stated he won’t discuss a contract extension during the season. Kekalainen’s next move is unclear, but he’s seemingly made it known that Panarin isn’t on the trade block.
TSN’s Darren Dreger reported that Kekalainen “has no interest in trading him and his principle point of interest is trying to convince him to re-sign.”