About three weeks ago, I wrote how Avs captain Gabe Landeskog could easily be left unprotected when the Avs submit their “protected” list for the July 21 NHL expansion draft with the Seattle Kraken. A lot of people thought that was insane. Well, there are some unconfirmed reports tonight that Landeskog will, indeed, be left unprotected when the list that they had to formally submit becomes public Sunday morning.
Rather than rehash the whole thing, I encourage you to click on the story and read how/why this could happen.
The Kraken have from Sunday to July 21 to exclusively negotiate with Landeskog. If they DO come to an agreement, he has to be their official selection on July 21 when the draft occurs. If not, the Avs can start negotiating with him soon after, until July 28, when EVERY team can make him an offer. Seattle can throw a huge offer at Landy now, and who knows, maybe Seattle part-owner, Hollywood producer Jerry Bruckheimer, will throw in a role in the next “Mission Impossible 18” or something. I can see Landy being a good bad guy against Tom Cruise, like that blond Euro guy in the first “Die Hard” movie.
As spelled out in my original piece, this is either Joe Sakic making a very shrewd move, allowing the Avs to protect a guy they may not have wanted to lose and still keeping Landy with a wink-win agreement. Or, it might have been the first formal step in the team disengaging from the 28-year-old left winger.
I have been told by reliable sources that the Avs and Landeskog are far apart on the numbers. But I’ve heard all that before. It could all be posturing. Or, maybe not.
Good on Athletic reporter Peter Baugh getting a quote the other day from Landeskog saying he was “disappointed” at not having a deal with the Avs by now. I can promise you this much: Sakic probably did NOT like Landeskog going public like that. Oh, I can guarantee he didn’t like that.
So, maybe there really is some discord between the parties now and Landy is a goner.
I don’t know, I still have a hunch this is all been something of a posturing game. I do have some people telling me they think Landeskog will return to the Avs. Sakic, of course, is saying nothing publicly. If Landeskog is gone, you can darn well expect them to do something dramatic with the money saved, to bring in someone else.
We’ll really analyze things tomorrow morning, when the list becomes official. Try to get some sleep, lol.