There's a very good chance the Summer of Jimmy Vesey ends today (apologies, Seinfeld fans).
The Harvard University free agent is expected to make his decision on his first NHL team, likely today with his representatives in Boston according to several reports. TSN's Bob McKenzie is hedging only slightly, saying there's a small chance the choice could leak into Saturday.
Even though the Sabres are not one of the teams Vesey interviewed with this week, they remain heavily involved in the process. The Vesey camp was impressed by its interview with Buffalo on July 7 and has stayed in contact with the Sabres, as recently as last weekend.
Here's the rundown of how teams handled the Vesey situation:
--Buffalo: GM Tim Murray, coach Dan Bylsma and head college scout Jerry Forton, a former Harvard assistant, met Vesey July 7 in Boston. Jack Eichel has played alongside Vesey in a Boston-area summer league. It is believed there has been no other face-to-face meetings between the sides.
--Toronto: No. 1 overall pick Auston Matthews is believed to have been a part of the Leafs' pitch, although team president Brendan Shanahan would not confirm that fact.
--New York Islanders: Center John Tavares, the face of the franchise, was part of the group joining GM Garth Snow in Boston to meet with Vesey.
--New Jersey: Goalie Cory Schneider and forward Kyle Palmieri were part of the pitch.
--Pittsburgh: While it's believed he was not part of the interview in person, Penguins captain Sidney Crosby reached out to Vesey later in the day to discuss the virtues of joining the Stanley Cup champions
--Chicago: Multiple reports say South Buffalo native Patrick Kane, who is spending the summer in the Windy City, flew to Boston and was part of the meeting with Vesey.
--New York Rangers: Several celebrities tweeted their support of a Vesey to New York movement. And Mets pitcher Noah Syndergaard also chimed in.
— Noah Syndergaard (@Noahsyndergaard) August 17, 2016
--Boston: The Bruins reportedly brought several players to meet Vesey as the session was a way to show off their new practice arena in suburban Brighton.
Reminder: This is not a bidding war. Vesey is limited to a two-year, entry-level deal with a $925,000 cap hit and bonuses that take the package to around $3.7 million annually. So money is going to be zero factor because all the teams will make the same max offer.
Be sure to look for my thoughts on the Vesey situation and the impact of his decision in my Inside the NHL column in Sunday's editions.