Good afternoon from Pittsburgh, where this is what is left of the Igloo:

I love the NHL draft, because every who's who in hockey is roaming around the city.

This morning, I did get to watch assistant GM Brent Flahr meet with Newport agents Don Meehan and Craig Oster about restricted free agent Justin Falk for an hour in the restaurant, so you can bet a new pact will be done with Falk soon. I wonder if it'll be similar to Clayton Stoner's two-year deal a few years ago -- one-way deal, then a two-way deal the next year. Just a thought.

Flahr's meeting came immediately after Winnipeg GM Kevin Cheveldayoff met with the entire Newport agency about Evander Kane, who is reportedly displeased being a Jet.

I love the draft.

Other early notes:

-- The Wild has come to terms on new two-way deals with Chad Rau and Chay Genoway.

-- Cody Almond has signed through 2015 in Geneva with Servette of the Swiss League. The Wild brass was miffed. He's never been on waivers and they think if he didn't make the team this fall, as a 22-year-old, 6-3 center, he would have been claimed by another NHL team. Hopefully it works out for Almond. Good kid.

-- Guillaume Latendresse one-year deal isn't done yet.

-- Here is a replay of my Wild chat today live on

-- The NHL schedule for next season will come out tomorrow. I hear the Wild opens at home Oct. 13 vs. Colorado. Five of the last seven games are on the road and it has a seven-game homestand in December.

OK, much work to do and I'm heading to the Twins game tonight to watch Lavelle E. Neal The Third in action.