Caps edge Red Wings in OT

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TSN Hockey Insider Bob McKenzie reported on Thursday's edition of Insider Trading Athanasiou is expected to sign a contract, in the NHL or elsewhere, by the end of the weekend.

And now that the season is on and the Red Wings are in LTIR situation, they can no longer give that deal to Andreas Athanasiou, so if Athanasiou is going to sign with the Red Wings, it's likely going to be a one-year deal now at a shade more than the $1.25 million that the Red Wings were offering him in the summer. While the deal comes with only a one-year term, it's essentially an opportunity for the Red Wings to continue developing their young prospect while pushing the contract discussions down the road for the time being.

"We see him as a top-nine forward who is going to be on a power-play unit and a penalty-kill unit", Holland said during the press conference. Athanasiou only averaged 13:28 of ice time last season, but it's a safe bet that he'll see much more rink run after he and his agent took so much time during the offseason reminding team brass just how valuable he is to the Original Six franchise.

Athanasiou, 23, skated in 64 games with the Red Wings during the 2016-17 campaign and finished ninth on the team with 29 points (18-11-29). His second goal came on the power play after John Carlson was called for delay of game.

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Athanasiou, who was a restricted free agent this summer, was seeking a two-year deal worth around $2.5 million per season.

The Red Wings are reportedly facing cap space issues - as in they don't have enough money to offer a young winger a generous contract deal. The contract, though more than doubled from his entry level deal, will act as a bridge for the Red Wings to get Athanasiou back in the fold.

NHL.com is reporting that Athanasiou is still in Switzerland - where he has been skating with a club - and it could be at least a week before he returns to the Red Wings' lineup.

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