Thomas Taking 1-Year Sabbatical; Hartley Arrives in CGY
(6/3/12) Difficult news out of Boston today for keeper league owners. It is being reported that Tim Thomas may take a year-off from NHL competition. The story was first broken by ESPN, and Thomas is expected to make an announcement Friday regarding the matter. He's in line to make $5 million in 2012-2013, and the Bruins would be on the hook for that in regards to their overall cap hit. Tuukka Rask is the back-up and the keeper GM who hears this news first could benefit by snagging Rask if he's a free-agent in your fantasy league. Developing... (NHL.com)
Final Update: It has been confirmed that Tim Thomas will sit out the entire 2012-2013 season for personal reasons ("friends, family, and faith"). Tuukka Rask will take over as the #1 netminder in Boston.
We are forced to speculate that this could be the end of the line for Thomas. At 38 years of age, it will be very difficult for Thomas to stop playing NHL hockey for a year and then jump back into the game and pick up where he left off. Although Thomas has been defying the odds his entire career, and of course there is an outside chance that he comes back mid season.
Keeper and dynasty owners have just been handed a monkey wrench of a situation if there ever was one. Good luck filling the void; make the move now to secure Rask if he's available - his value just skyrocketed.
In other news, the Calgary Flames have hired Bob Hartley as their new head coach. During his five year tenure in Colorado, Hartley coached the Avalanche to a Stanley Cup win in 2001. He also coached the Atlanta Thrashers for 5 seasons. Hartley is coming off a Swiss A League championship with the ZCS Lions. Hartley should help improve Calgary's fantasy production after the players there were stifled by the Sutter brothers for the past few seasons. (CalgaryFlames.com)