Canadians and Romanov await clarification on how to proceed with the contract


If you’re curious about what the NHL memorandum of understanding for his new collective agreement and his return to play protocol mean for Alexander Romanov, you’re not alone.

As of this hour, the Montreal Canadiens, agent Dan Milstein and Romanov have more questions than answers (please note that this could change in an instant).

But here’s what they know:

Players like Romanov – draft players who have been placed on their team’s reserve list, players who were previously eligible to sign and play immediately at the end of their respective seasons in other leagues – will be allowed to sign their entry-level agreement and to have it. start in 2019-20, but they will not be allowed to play in games this summer.

I got it?

In addition, Elliotte Friedman reported on Monday evening that:

If you are wondering why the Canadians would be willing to sign Romanov for 2019-2020 and allow him to burn a year of his contract even if he will not be eligible to play, you are asking the right question. It’s hard to imagine that Montreal brass instruments are too captivated by the idea of ​​bringing Romanov one year closer to a potentially large payment – which would be won with a smaller sample – without even having to use it this summer .

In light of this, the relevant questions are: Do Canadians sufficiently see the value of Romanov’s participation in training camp on July 13, if allowed? Do they see it by making Romanov one of the 52 people they bring to the city center on July 26 and by spending all that time around their players – training with them and getting to know them properly – even not on their list of 31 players? Would these things be enough to mitigate the fact that he burns a year off his contract?

To be clear, we don’t know yet (and Milstein, Romanov or the Canadians don’t know either) if that would be allowed.

But if Romanov was allowed to do these things, it would obviously benefit him – and certainly much more than sitting for months without playing before starting his NHL career in late December 2020 or January 2021. In an ideal world, he ” d sign, immediately engrave the first year of his three-year agreement with the Canadians, participate in their next training camp, train with them, participate in all team functions in the hub city, then have the chance participate in tournaments that teams will likely organize for their prospects in the fall.

It would even be a little good for Canadians too, even if it is a lot to ask of them. Especially on the front of the city-hub.

The Canadians, like all other teams participating in the return-to-play model, will have tough decisions about who can accompany them to Toronto later this month. Once you start to figure out the numbers – between the players, the administration, the coaching staff, the medical staff, the equipment managers and at least one member of the team’s marketing staff – you start to understand how difficult it can be to squeeze someone you can’t even use.

What a pickle.

This is not how Canadians hoped to happen when they announced in early May that they had reached an agreement with Romanov for a contract that would start in 2019-2020 or 2020-21. They drafted him 38th overall in 2018, they have seen him become an impressive young professional since, and they hoped to see him play an important role in helping them take a big step forward as soon as possible.

It’s a fact that they wanted the NHL to move so as to not allow players like Romanov to sign and play, but sources said months ago that the league believed it would be unfair to have multiple players making their debut – players who could have a significant impact – teams that might not have been included in the playoffs if the regular season had ended and had not been interrupted by a global pandemic .

It is clear that thought ultimately prevailed, even though NHL deputy commissioner Bill Daly told Sportsnet on Monday that he would not comment on the reasoning for this adjustment to the rule, or any other problem of the ABC, before the ratification of the agreement. by the NHL and the NHLPA.

Anyway, we are not the only ones looking for answers here.

Canadians, Milstein and Romanov want to know everything they need to know, and they want to know it yesterday. All parties, above all, want to avoid a situation where the player has been inactive for almost a year.

But how Canadians handle this will depend on what they find out.

Sources have indicated that they would be willing to lend Romanov to a European team – most European leagues plan to restart in the fall – but you have to ask yourself how much this really suits them. How Canadians can be delighted to lend Romanov to another team, have them play 20 to 30 games and be exposed to illness or injury from another team before joining their team for a camp training, exhibition games, an 82- condensed schedule of possible matches and playoffs?

Which European team would be willing to conclude such an agreement? And how would Romanov feel on this path?

Again, more questions than answers here, but it’s a situation we’ll quickly reconsider if and when the league and players ratify their agreement.


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