July 1 has come and gone, but the NHL Rumours are still rolling in! We’re covering all of the biggest names still available during the free agency period to bring you the latest NHL Rumours from every corner of the league. Let’s dive into Wednesday’s edition featuring the Boston Bruins, Vegas Golden Knights, Columbus Blue Jackets and Edmonton Oilers.
All NHL Rumours are taken from the original source and are subject to change.
Don Sweeney said the Bruins don’t have an offer extended to Marcus Johansson.
— Marisa Ingemi (@Marisa_Ingemi) July 1, 2019
Analysis: This is a pretty easy one to read. Johansson won’t be rocking the B next season. He was a game-changer for the Bruins third line this year, alongside Charlie Coyle. That fact doesn’t change Bostons tight cap space.
Johansson is likely looking for a longer-term deal than Boston has room for at the moment. They’ve got David Backes eating up a hefty chunk of their cap, at $6 million per year. Passing on Johansson leaves a big hole to fill, but moving on makes sense for both parties.
Darren Dreger reported that Johansson was meeting with several teams as of Monday, but no word on the specifics of who.
Vegas Golden Knights
Rumour: Jesse Granger of the Athletic reports that Vegas and Nikita Gusev are far apart in their contract negotiations.
Analysis: After working hard to bring Gusev to the NHL by way of early release from the KHL, he might not pull on a Knights sweater after all. Vegas is another team with the cap ceiling bearing down on them. With just around $3.3 million left and a few restricted free agents coming up on expiring contracts, Gusev could be the odd man out.
The pair have been negotiating a two-year deal but are around $2 million apart in their offers. His original one-year, entry-level contract expired, and July 1 marked the first day Gusev was officially eligible to sign a long term deal as he became a restricted free agent.
Trading Gusev is an option, but moving a player who has never played in the NHL isn’t an easy road. Reading how his KHL talent will translate at the NHL level is a gamble. If the Sin City franchise is willing to take the bet, they’ll need to clear the cap space to do so.
Colombus Blue Jackets
— Murray Pam (@Pammerhockey) June 30, 2019
Analysis: Dzingel’s stunt in Columbus is seemingly up. After 21 regular season games and just nine postseason appearances, he gathered 13 total points. He brings speed and versatility to any bench. Additionally, his price tag isn’t one that a team like Colorado, with a ton of cap space open, should be afraid of.
Notably, Dzingel has ties to the Chicago area. The Blackhawks have made a handful of trades and already re-signed David Kampf. After a busy offseason for Chicago, the addition of Dzingel would fill out their forward group nicely.
After losing Matt Duchene to the Nashville Predators, Artemi Panarin to the New York Rangers and Sergei Bobrovsky to the Florida Panthers, the Blue Jackets could be losing yet another player in free agency.
Edmonton looking into returning Pat Maroon to the fold. Oilers among a few teams pitching for the big LW.
— Mark Spector (@SportsnetSpec) July 1, 2019
Rumour: Mark Spector tweeted that Pat Maroon may be returning to the Oilers. The forward bet on himself when he went to his hometown team. Now he could be looking at a bigger payday elsewhere.
Analysis: Maroon found himself on a cheap, one-year deal with the St. Louis Blues early in the free agency period last year. Then, after a hard-fought season, he and the Blues found themselves hoisting their first ever Stanley Cup. Now, it looks like his former team is attempting to woo him back to Edmonton.
Maroon is a steal for the Oilers, who don’t have mountains of money to work with. They need the depth on the wing he would offer. He is familiar with the city and the organization, so his return isn’t entirely out of the realm of possibility.
The Blues are still in the mix, but if they can’t secure him for a reasonable amount, they’re likely to let him go smoothly. Now that he’s lamented himself as a hometown hero in St. Louis, fans won’t like to hear it, but the Blues can survive without him. They have the depth to replace him.
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