| Ekman locked up for two
SJ's second leading scorer in
8/10/05 - by Mike Lee
Perhaps Sharks GM Doug Wilson is trying to relive some of the magic of
the Sharks 2003-04 campaign in his efforts to field a team for the upcoming
season. His 03-04 roster took a while to kick things into gear, but once they
did, the team was a jugarnaut. Wilson's pen hasn't exactly been on fire this
free agent signing period, although he did score a minor victory by inking
forward Nils Ekman to a two year contract on Tuesday.
Ekman was one of many pleasant surprises for the Sharks during their Stanley
Cup run the Spring before last. The Swedish left winger recorded career highs
in goals (22), assists (33) and points (55), finishing second in scoring the
Ekman played in his native Sweden last season during the lockout, scoring 18
goals and adding 27 assists for Djurgarden (SEL).
"We are pleased to have Nils back in the fold to build on the stellar
play he showed in 2003-04," said Wilson. "His speed and skill set
should allow him to flourish under the new rules and style of play the
NHL Signs Cable Deal with Comcast
The NHL announced a two year $100 million deal with Comcast, to have games
telecast on the cable giant's Outdoor Life Network. Comcast scores a minor
victory over competitors such as the Dish Network and Direct TV, because OLN is
not available on those satellite TV providers.
Score a tick against Comcast in the Bay Area, because OLN is not offered as
part of the basic subscription package on many Comcast affiliates. Subscribers
need to pony up the extra dollars for Digital Cable service if they want to
catch non-Shark games in the Bay Area.
ESPN, who broadcast NHL games since 1985, has the right to match the Comcast
deal, but is not expected to given poor ratings and the advent of new
programming, such as poker.
Biggest signings of the day included goaltender Sean Burke and defenseman Dan
Boyle agreeing to deals with the Tampa Bay Lightning and Simon Gagne re-upping
with the Philadelphia Flyers. The Flyers also signed defenseman Kim Johnsson
for $2.2 million, which begs the question, what happened to the salary cap?
The Flyers have over $33 million committed to contracts for next season,
including over $12 million committed to Peter Forsberg, Mike Rathje and Darrien
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