Welcome back to another edition of NHL Rumours. With Free Agency fast approaching, Last Word is here to bring you all the NHL Rumours. Today we look at the Vancouver Canucks, Vegas Golden Knights, Montreal Canadiens, Pittsburgh Penguins, and Edmonton Oilers.
Rumour: We start off NHL Rumours with Sportsnet’s Elliotte Friedman reporting that the Canucks are still in on many of the UFA defencemen options. Names that he included are Ben Hutton, Tyler Myers, Jake Gardiner, and Jordie Benn.
Last one of the year. Thank you for reading, get to this one before it is outdated: https://t.co/EwbmEbA0yB
— Elliotte Friedman (@FriedgeHNIC) June 26, 2019
Analysis: While this is not a new rumour, it is interesting to hear just how far the Canucks are looking. Friedman mentioned that when Alexander Edler re-signed he thought that would price Gardiner out. However, with Hutton’s status now unclear, Gardiner could re-enter the picture. This is in addition to Myers, who recently met with the Canucks brass.
The Canucks need to be careful spending money here. Yes, they want to be competitive. However, more often than not it has been shown that tossing money at UFA’s works out poorly. Giving an older defender like Myers tons of money has a very good chance of backfiring. This is also true with respect to Gardiner and term as well as overpaying Benn after a career-year. The Canucks need to be cautious on how much they are spending.
Vegas Golden Knights
— Jesse Granger (@JesseGranger_) June 26, 2019
Analysis: Nosek is a solid depth player so a short contract could be very helpful for the Knights. However, they are in an incredible cap-crunch and need to start moving money out soon. Cap Friendly has them well over the $81.5 million salary cap with just 19 players on the roster. While David Clarkson can be placed on LTIR, and Erik Haula is on the move, they still need to free up more space.
The Knights still need to sign more players, and in order for Nosek to make sense, he will need to come in cheap. After just recently signing William Karlsson, they will need to figure out how to move money. Names like Paul Stastny, Max Pacioretty, and Colin Miller have all been thrown around as ways to get space. They will likely keep at least one of Pacioretty or Stastny. However, Miller could start looking for a new home soon.
Either way, the Knights have found what it is like to be a contending team in the NHL. Cap crunches effect team depth, and it is sure to do the same here. Getting Nosek re-signed could be a step towards keeping strong depth, something that has been a Vegas strength since they entered the league.
Montreal Canadiens and Pittsburgh Penguins
Rumour: NHL Rumours go back to 31 Thoughts and Elliotte Friedman where he reports both the Canadiens and Penguins are teams that are on Corey Perry‘s radar.
Analysis: Perry was recently bought out, however, he clearly feels that he has more to give. He will likely come cheap for a veteran presence who has known how to be a pest and score his whole career. The Pens have added Jack Johnson and Erik Gudbranson in past seasons to add toughness, it could easily be seen that they would add Perry too.
Perry could be an interesting depth piece for either of these teams but the price has to be right. Montreal looks to build off of a surprisingly positive year last season and could also use some depth. It is possible they feel with a younger team, someone like Perry could help lead. Perry could also be a net-front presence and help what was a bad power-play last season. Either of these teams would likely take Perry on a short-term and small money deal. However, Perry would also have to be OK with a salary cut (mixed with his buyout money) and likely a smaller role on his team too.
Rumour: We end NHL Rumours in Edmonton. TSN’s Frank Seravalli reported that the goalie market remains fluid but the Oilers have talked with Mike Smith. As well, Petr Mrazek is another option for the Oilers in net.
Goaltending market remains fluid. #Oilers have connected with Mike Smith during interview period. Petr Mrazek still believed to be an option in EDM, as Smith would also be to replace Mrazek in Carolina.
— Frank Seravalli (@frank_seravalli) June 26, 2019
Analysis: With the sizeable extension Mikko Koskinen got it is easy to see why the Oilers may not want to spend too much on another goalie. However, a tandem pairing with Koskinen could work. It would allow him to have a lesser workload than a starter and it proved helpful for teams last year. Teams including both the Flames (Smith) and Carolina (Mrazek), who both made the playoffs.
Smith would very likely be a small term and maybe smaller AAV option. He is getting older and it would be foolish to lock into any long-term deal. Mrazek has shown he is an NHL-calibre goaltender and at the very least may demand a mid-term deal, perhaps as much as four or five years. However, if the money or playing time is right Mrzaek may bet on himself one more time.
Either way, the Oilers have some options in their net. Both those options shouldn’t be very expensive. As well, not needing a true “starter” like Sergei Bobrovsky but rather a tandem goalie could be helpful for the Oilers. It will easily keep them on the cheaper side of the market.
That is all for NHL Rumours today, check in tomorrow for more rumours.