September 4, 2019 | 11:16pm ET
AVS CONTINUING TALKS WITH RANTANEN
Mikko Rantanen, right wing
The Colorado Avalanche remain in ongoing contract discussions with the agents for restricted free agent star Mikko Rantanen, who presently remains unsigned.
According to a well-placed source close to the situation, TFP Editor-in-Chief David Pagnotta reported Wednesday evening contract talks have “picked up recently” between the Avs and Rantanen’s camp.
While a new contract is not yet believed to be imminent, the continued dialogue appears to be a positive sign and talks are expected to carry on and possibly pick up steam over the next week.
Rantanen is one of the many high-profiled RFAs who are still looking for a new contract with their respective teams. He joins a long list that includes the likes of Toronto Maple Leafs winger Mitch Marner, Winnipeg Jets forwards Patrik Laine and Kyle Connor, Calgary Flames youngster Matthew Tkachuk, and Philadelphia Flyers defenceman Ivan Provorov, among others.
Told contract talks have picked up again recently between the Avalanche and Mikko Rantanen's camp. I don't get the sense anything's close just yet, but the convos are continuing.— David Pagnotta (@TheFourthPeriod) September 5, 2019
Last month, Avalanche GM Joe Sakic told NHL.com he prefers to get Rantanen locked into a long-term contract. It’s unclear if the two sides are still working towards that.
“We prefer long term,” Sakic said in early-August. “If it has to be short term, it has to be short term. We want to make sure we have him signed. There’s a lot of players in that same situation, a lot of great hockey players that are coming up. We’ll just see how all the players and agents handle that. There are comparable numbers that are starting to come in. We’re open to different possibilities.”
Rantanen, 22, registered 31 goals and 56 assists for 87 points in 74 games with the Avalanche last season.