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Jets seem hesitant to lock up Byfuglien, Ladd

Edmonton Oilers v Winnipeg Jets

Edmonton Oilers v Winnipeg Jets

Lance Thomson

True to form, Jets GM Kevin Cheveldayoff was careful not to show his hand when asked yesterday about the futures of pending unrestricted free agents Dustin Byfuglien and Andrew Ladd.

“At different points and times, you try to move the process along,” Cheveldayoff told the Winnipeg Sun. “Sometimes, there are circumstances – internally or externally – that come into play here. At this point and time, there are various levels of dialogue that are happening on both of their fronts.”

Which is a lot of words, with very little actually said.

But reading between the lines, Cheveldayoff may be hesitant to lock up both veterans to long-term contracts. Perhaps he’ll only re-sign one. Or possibly even neither.

“The long and short answer of it is that you just don’t know where things may or not go in the future (with regards to the salary cap) and you have to plan accordingly,” he said.

“It’s not just a one year type of thing.”

Byfuglien, 30, and Ladd, 29, have both logged significant mileage in the NHL, and a budget team like Winnipeg -- particularly one with good, young prospects in the pipeline -- has to be especially careful with how it allocates its dollars.

Related: ‘Nothing more than preliminary discussions’ between Jets, Byfuglien