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Pens Points: Arbitration Season

Only four players still await settlement or arbitration: Johansson, Hoffman, Haula and Bernier. Gary Bettman says the shootout is here to stay and that new Quebec franchise might need to start out in the West.

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The New Jersey Devils avoided arbitration by signing defenseman Adam Larsson to a 6-year, $25M contract, which seems a good value for a 22-year-old blueliner with a decent upside. [North Jersey]

Alex Chiasson and the Ottawa Senators did go to arbitration and the player was awarded a 1-year, $1.2M contract, substantially lower than his ask but also kind of high for a depth forward. [Ottawa Citizen]

Calgary Flames were busy over the weekend, signing Paul Byron to a 1-year, $900K contract. They also signed Josh Jooris and Turner Elson to 1-year deals. [Pro Hockey Talk]

The Capitals avoided arbitration with Braden Holtby, but remain about $1.75M per season apart in talks with Marcus Johansson ahead of the hearing scheduled for Wednesday. Player requesting $4.75M, team countering with $3M. [The Score]

The Preds and RFA winger Colin Wilson literally just agreed to a 4-year, $15.75M contract. [Nashville Predators]

The New York Rangers and Derek Stepan avoided arbitration by agreeing on a 6-year, $39M contract. Seems a good deal for both sides. [CBS Sports]

The Detroit Red Wings have signed promising young second-rounder Tomas Jurco to a 2-year, $1.8M contract. [ESPN]

Today's signings by Stepan and Wilson have dwindled the number of pending arbitration cases to just four - in addition to Johansson, hearings are also scheduled this week for Mike Hoffman, Erik Haula, and Jonathan Bernier. []

The Columbus Blue Jackets are suddenly everyone's favorites to be the Metro's most improved team next season. They've certainly invested heavily into upgrades this offseason, but will it pay off? [Columbus Dispatch]

Gary Bettman says that, despite the league instituting a 3-on-3 overtime, the shootout is here to stay. I know I'm probably in the minority but I like that. [Pro Hockey Talk]

In other Bettman musings, he says that it's not a given that the newly-applied-for Quebec City franchise would be in the East, given the 16-14 East-West disparity. [CBS Sports]

It's the off-season and if, like me, you feel a huge void for good hockey conversation, especially good Pens conversation, take a listen to Garage League Podcasts by Lyle Kossis and Andy Smith. The latest episode discusses arbitrations and the hiring of Sam Ventura and what this means for Pens forwards. Great stuff and perfect for my beach listening. [SoundCloud]