The Skate Podcast: Craig Button on what may happen with Bruins RFAs McAvoy, Carlo

August 29, 2019 - 10:23 am

Training camps are just two weeks from opening and we still have a long, star-studded list of unsigned restricted free agents, including Bruins defensemen Charlie McAvoy and Brandon Carlo.

Craig Button from TSN joined The Skate Podcast co-hosts Ken Laird and Matt Kalman this week to discuss the RFA backlog, the Bruins prospect pool and what he thinks of the Bruins’ ability to compete for the Stanley Cup again but still have a bright future beyond this season.

When it comes to McAvoy, Carlo and the other unsigned RFAs, Button thinks cautionary tales of star players that signed for too long early in their careers will lead to shorter-term contracts for today’s RFAs.

“I think what’s happened is we have this group of restricted free agents, we know about the forward group, and there probably hasn’t been as much talk about Charlie McAvoy, Brandon Carlo and [Columbus’> Zack Werenski and [Philadelphia’s> Ivan Provorov, who in their own right create a different climate in the NHL,” Button said. “I think that we’re headed to a shorter-term contract template because it’s really tough to find a value long term with the players. And we see that with contracts that have been signed. You know everybody’s trying to balance it out, do we go short-term, do we go long-term? You know I think it’s very hard to go long term.

“I think when you look at [Colorado’s> Nathan MacKinnon, when you look at [Winnipeg’s> Mark Schiefele, who both signed contracts out of entry-level. Even David Pastrnak, who have clearly outperformed their contracts, it leaves the next group of players and their agents sitting back going ‘Whoa, unless you’re going to give us a big number on a long-term contract, we’re going to go short term.’

Button also talked about some “yard markers” that have been signed this summer that could be used as examples for RFAs still looking for contracts. But you’ll have to listen to the podcast to find out which contracts could be the models for the new deals.

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