All posts by Flip Livingstone

Report: Sharks avoid arbitration with Tierney, settle on 2-year deal

The San Jose Sharks settled on a two-year contract with forward Chris Tierney on Wednesday, according to Sportsnet's Elliotte Friedman, avoiding arbitration. The new deal carries an annual average value of $2.9375 million.

Tierney is coming off a strong year for the Sharks. The two-way forward registered career highs in goals (17), assists (23), and points (40) while playing in the full slate of 82 games. He added two assists in 10 playoff games.

The 24-year-old Keswick, Ontario, native was selected 55th overall by San Jose in the 2012 NHL Draft. Tierney was scheduled to have an arbitration hearing Friday.

Copyright © 2018 Score Media Ventures Inc. All rights reserved. Certain content reproduced under license.

Fantasy: 4 players who won’t replicate last season’s success

It happens in sports every year: athletes produce a magical season, but then quickly fall back to earth despite heightened expectations. Predicting that regression is far from an exact science, but when it comes to fantasy - and more specifically, to fantasy hockey - the ability to peg a player who's set for a decline can be the difference between winning and losing.

With that in mind, here are four players to be wary of this fall:

William Karlsson, C/LW, Vegas Golden Knights

Let's not over complicate things here, Karlsson came out of nowhere to take the league by storm in 2017-18 with a ridiculous offensive campaign highlighted by a slightly shocking 43 goals and 35 assists for Vegas.

All props to Karlsson and the Knights for a sensational inaugural season on the strip, but the likelihood of the speedy Swede even cracking 30 goals next year is relatively low. Especially when you consider that his highest output previous to last season was a lowly nine with the Columbus Blue Jackets three years ago.

Don't forget, Vegas has already lost the scoring punch of veteran snipers James Neal and David Perron, so opposing teams will focus their attention on shutting down Karlsson and linemates Jonathan Marchessault and Reilly Smith.

The addition of Paul Stastny alleviates some of the offense lost with Perron and Neal, but the book is out on both the Knights and Karlsson, so the diminutive forward will be in tough to repeat last season's improbable offensive showing.

Dustin Brown, LW/RW, Los Angeles Kings

Speaking of guys who came out of nowhere last year, Brown had a resurgent 2017-18 that saw him surpass the 40-point mark for the first time in five seasons. While Brown's 28 goals and 33 assists were huge fantasy assets, his recent track record leaves some cause for concern.

Season G A P
2013-14 15 12 27
2014-15 11 16 27
2015-16 11 17 28
2016-17 14 22 36
2017-18 28 33 61

It should also be noted Brown had the benefit of playing alongside a red-hot Anze Kopitar for a majority of last season, so his offensive numbers clearly benefited from the Hart Trophy-type campaign from his All-Star centerman.

Brown will likely have the same opportunity to play on Kopitar's wing next season, but expecting both players to repeat their production, especially Brown, is a risky bet. After all, the Kings are a team which perennially finishes in the bottom half of the league in team scoring.

Banking on a soon-to-be 34-year-old with rapidly diminishing foot speed to post back-to-back 40-plus point seasons for the first time in seven years would be a foolish move. Brown regresses next season, book it.

Josh Bailey, LW/RW, New York Islanders

Bailey's proven he can hang in the NHL over the last two seasons after posting 127 points over 158 games while holding down a spot on the Islanders' top line. However, that No. 1 line had been anchored by superstar pivot John Tavares over recent years, so Bailey's numbers are set for a significant decline with Johnny T now cemented in Toronto for the foreseeable future.

Tavares converted 29 of Bailey's 96 assists since the start of the 2016 campaign, meaning just over 30 percent of Bailey's apples came on JT's goals. Moreover, Tavares assisted on 14 of Bailey's 31 goals over the last two years, so, to expect Bailey to post another All-star-worthy season would be a bold prediction.

Now, Bailey will still have the benefit of playing with up-and-coming stars like 40-goal man Anders Lee and reigning Calder Trophy winner Mathew Barzal, so he still holds fantasy value, especially in deeper leagues. But without his talisman up the middle, Bailey will be hard-pressed to repeat last season's 71-point performance.

Phil Kessel, RW, Pittsburgh Penguins

No one likes to crush hot dogs and put up solid offensive seasons as much as Kessel does. But in all fairness to Phil, the impressive 92-point showing from last year won't be replicated in 2018-19.

Sure, he's coming off the most productive campaign of his 11-year career (34 goals and 58 assists), but Kessel will be turning 31 in October and it's not exactly like he's been the most committed player off the ice, either. Not to mention the rumored rift between Kessel and team management, which led to reports indicating Kessel was so unhappy with the Penguins that he would accept a trade out of Pittsburgh.

Related: - Report: Kessel not opposed to trade, would play for Tocchet's Coyotes

There is no denying the stellar season Kessel had in 2017-18, a career year is a career year no matter how you slice it. But Phil managed only one goal in 12 playoff games, and was clearly uncomfortable with how head coach Mike Sullivan was utilizing him in the postseason.

Kessel can still bring it, but given the potentially sticky off-ice situation and the growing notion that the veteran is getting tired of the day-to-day grind that comes with being an everyday NHLer, and it becomes quite evident that Kessel won't be posting another 90-point season.

(Photos courtesy: Getty Images)

Copyright © 2018 Score Media Ventures Inc. All rights reserved. Certain content reproduced under license.

Report: Barroway looking to sell 49 percent of Coyotes at $500M valuation

Andrew Barroway has only been the sole owner of the Arizona Coyotes for just over a year, but he's reportedly seeking to sell 49 percent of the NHL franchise at a valuation of $500 million, sources told Mike Ozanian of Forbes.

Related: Barroway committed to Arizona, new arena: 'No exit strategy here'

Barroway took majority ownership of the club in December 2014, and took sole ownership in June of last year after spending $240 million to buy out his remaining partners. The $500-million valuation is a seemingly high figure given that Arizona has languished at the bottom of the standings and has struggled to draw fans for the majority of the past two decades.

The club is also in financial turmoil, as it sits with $250 million of debt, $100 million of which is owed to the NHL.

Given those issues, it will be interesting to see if potential buyers are willing to meet the valuation that Barroway is seeking.

Copyright © 2018 Score Media Ventures Inc. All rights reserved. Certain content reproduced under license.

Islanders agree to terms with Pulock on 2-year deal

The New York Islanders agreed to terms with blue-liner Ryan Pulock on a two-year contract Tuesday, the team announced.

Pulock is coming off a solid season for the Isles in which he registered career-high totals in goals (10), assists (22), and points (32). He also racked up 184 shots on net and finished fourth on the team in hits with 113.

The Dauphin, Manitoba native was selected by the Islanders in the first round (15th overall) of the 2013 NHL Draft. He has 36 points across 84 career NHL regular-season games.

Copyright © 2018 Score Media Ventures Inc. All rights reserved. Certain content reproduced under license.

Canadiens agree to terms with Phillip Danault on 3-year contract

The Montreal Canadiens agreed to terms with center Phillip Danault on a three-year contract Sunday, the team announced. The new deal carries an annual average value of $3.083 million per season.

Danault is coming off a campaign in which he was hampered by injury. The 25-year-old's 2017-18 was derailed after he took a Zdeno Chara slap shot off the side of his head in January. Danault still suited up in 52 games, but he only managed to register eight goals and 17 assists in 16:35 of ice time per night.

Despite his lack of career productivity so far, the Victoriaville, Quebec native will still play an important role up the middle next season for a Canadiens squad that seriously lacks forward depth.

Danault was drafted by the Chicago Blackhawks with their 26th overall pick in 2011. He was set for a salary arbitration hearing on July 20, but that won't happen now that the two sides have agreed to terms on a new deal.

Copyright © 2018 Score Media Ventures Inc. All rights reserved. Certain content reproduced under license.

Parise feeling 100 percent following sternum injury

When he's healthy, there is no denying Minnesota Wild forward Zach Parise's ability to put up points.

Related: Parise suffered broken sternum in Game 3; reportedly out 6-8 weeks

So, following a season in which the 33-year-old underwent back surgery and suffered a fractured sternum in the playoffs, Wild fans should be excited to hear that Parise expects to be ready for the start of the 2018-19 campaign.

"I don't anticipate that being a problem," Parise said Saturday, confirming that he feels 100 percent, according to Dane Mizutani of the St. Paul Pioneer Press. "It feels good."

Parise missed 40 games after his back surgery in October. Following his return, he registered 15 regular-season goals - 12 of them in his last 18 contests - and nine assists, only to suffer the sternum injury in Game 3 of the first round of the postseason.

He says he's been skating for "a while" and is encouraged by his play down the stretch.

"It was nice to feel normal again on the ice. That was the biggest thing for me. ... That was relieving," Parise said. "I'm looking forward to doing that again next season."

Copyright © 2018 Score Media Ventures Inc. All rights reserved. Certain content reproduced under license.

Blue Jackets sign Bjorkstrand to 3-year deal

The Columbus Blue Jackets signed restricted free-agent forward Oliver Bjorkstrand to a three-year contract on Sunday, the club announced. His new deal carries an annual average value of $2.5 million, according to Brian Hedger of

"Oliver is a gifted player with a tremendous shot and scoring instincts who has improved steadily during his first three seasons as a pro," Columbus general manager Jarmo Kekalainen said. "He is just scratching the surface of the type of player he can be and we believe he has the potential to be a dynamic offensive player for our club."

Bjorkstrand tallied 11 goals and 29 assists in 82 regular-season games for the Blue Jackets last year, chipping in with one goal and two assists in six playoff games.

The Denmark native was a prolific scorer in lower levels, winning WHL player of the year honors in 2014-15 after racking up a ridiculous 63 goals and 55 assists in 59 games for the Portland Winterhawks. It will be very interesting to see if Bjorkstrand can continue to develop his game at the NHL level.

He was drafted by Columbus in the third round of the 2013 draft (89th overall).

Copyright © 2018 Score Media Ventures Inc. All rights reserved. Certain content reproduced under license.

Golden Knights ink Fleury to 3-year contract extension

The Vegas Golden Knights signed goaltender Marc-Andre Fleury to a three-year contract extension Friday, the team announced. His new deal is worth an annual average value of $7 million.

Flower had one year remaining on his previous contract, which carried an AAV of $5.75 million. This extension keeps him on the Strip until the end of the 2022 campaign.

The Sorel, Quebec native joined the Knights via the expansion draft last June and went on to have one of the best seasons of his storied 14-year career. Fleury posted a record of 29-13-4 to go along with a sensational 2.24 goals-against average and .927 save percentage while backstopping Vegas to the Pacific Division crown and Stanley Cup Final run.

Fleury proved last season that despite his age and lengthy track record, he can still turn in Vezina Trophy-level performances. He's a three-time Cup champion and ranks 11th all time in victories with 404.

Copyright © 2018 Score Media Ventures Inc. All rights reserved. Certain content reproduced under license.

Canadiens agree to terms with Armia on 1-year contract

The Montreal Canadiens agreed to terms with restricted free-agent winger Joel Armia on Friday, the team announced. The deal will pay Armia $1.85 million for the 2018-19 season.

Armia was dealt to Montreal from the Winnipeg Jets along with goaltender Steve Mason on June 30 in exchange for defensive prospect Simon Bourque. The Finnish native played in 79 regular-season games for the Jets last campaign, registering 12 goals and 17 assists in 12:36 of ice time per night.

The 25-year-old forward will bring some much-needed scoring depth to a Canadiens forward group that managed the third-lowest goal total last season with a measly 207.

Armia was drafted by the Buffalo Sabres in the first round (16th overall) of the 2011 NHL Draft. He has 26 goals and 58 points in 180 career regular-season games.

Copyright © 2018 Score Media Ventures Inc. All rights reserved. Certain content reproduced under license.