MONTREAL – As the deadline nears for a contract to be signed between Montreal Canadiens defenceman P.K. Subban and the team’s upper management —; many young hockey fans hope a deal can be reached.
Subban is seeking an annual salary of $8.5 million while the team is offering $5.25 million.
In less than 24 hours, an arbitrator will step in to decide the final amount but Subban could still be subject to a trade.
P.K. Subban loses out to Patrice Bergeron for NHL ’15 cover
READ MORE: P.K. Subban stays mum on contract negotiations
The 25-year-old defenceman was in Brossard Thursday, playing ball hockey with his two brothers, father and dozens of youths.
Subban is promoting a nationwide fund-raising campaign called the Hyundai Hockey Helpers program.
Last year almost one thousand Quebec kids from underprivileged families benefited from the campaign, receiving more than $200 thousand in public donations.
The kids playing with Subban and getting his autograph on Thursday were thrilled to be able to rub shoulders and trade shots with one of the best defence players in the NHL.
“I loved it, it was really fun. I mean. It always has been my dream to play with P.K. Subban,” Alec Genest said.
READ MORE: P.K. Subban fulfilling dreams on, off ice
But foremost on everyone’s mind is whether Subban is going to sign a new deal with Montreal.
The kids playing with him are encouraging the Habs to act.
“I think the Canadians should renew his contract,” Justin Porco said in between playing ball hockey.
P.K. Subban plays road hockey with youths in Brossard, to promote accessible hockey for all.
Tim Sargeant / Global News
Subban refused to publicly discuss details of his contract talks giving a diplomatic explanation.
“I’m being political because we know why we’re here right? And it’s not for that. I mean I’d love to elaborate for you guys but we’re here for the kids today. We’re here for the program,” Subban said.
However, Subban insists he wants to stay in Montreal.
“Montreal is where I started my career. They gave me the opportunity to start my NHL career and I hope to finish it here as well,” he said.
Gallery: PK Subban back on the ice!