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Monday Caterwaul: Florida Panthers Offseason Open Forum

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It’s official, Kovalchuk staying in Russia

Florida Panthers v New Jersey Devils

A very quiet weekend has passed in the NHL with just a smattering of new signings and none coming on Sunday. One overseas signing of interest was that of Ilya Kovalchuk, who inked a new one-year deal with SKA Saint Petersburg. Kovalchuk was linked to the Florida Panthers among others. At the conclusion of his new contact, Kovalchuk will be free to return to the NHL without signing with the New Jersey Devils first.

A couple of dates to keep in mind as we plow through month seven of 2017.

July 15 is the deadline for players to accept qualifying offers.

July 20-Aug. 4 Arbitration hearings are held in Toronto, with individual dates and times to be announced later.

The Panthers have already taken care of their restricted free agent housekeeping (with the exception of qualified MacKenize Weegar signing) so they don’t have to worry about either of those two things. Could a player shake loose that they are interested in? Unlikely, but you never know.