Friday’s edition of NHL rumours takes a look at a pair of Edmonton rumours. As well, staying in Canada with the Jets and then an overlook at the league of a whole. Today we take a look at the Edmonton Oilers, Winnipeg Jets, and NHL CBA. Tune in every day for more rumours.
Rumour: We start NHL Rumours in Edmonton where The Athletic’s James Willis takes a look at how much Darnell Nurse may make on his next contract. His conclusion is that a likely option may be to sign a longer-term deal that looks like the Mathew Dumba or Esa Lindell contract.
Analysis: These two contracts were five years and six years at $6 million or just under it. Nurse’s number may come in a bit higher if the agent chooses to look at the percentage of cap. However, this seems like a reasonable enough deal. Nurse is not a clear number one guy by any means but he is a solid defenceman. He would help out just about any teams defence core and is the ideal second pair type guy.
Edmonton doesn’t need to sign Nurse to a new deal for another year but they should start thinking about it soon enough. They currently have 2.4 million dollars in cap space and are projected to have roughly 24 million dollars next year, depending on if the cap goes up or down. They have nine UFA’s and four RFA’s coming off the books next year so they need to spend wisely. Nurse is the most important piece out of all of them.
Deciding how they use the cap space going forward is going to be key for an Edmonton team that has found nowhere near as much success as they would hope to have had by now.
Rumour: Sportsnet’s Elliotte Friedman also joined NHL Network and talked about a potential return for Jesse Puljujarvi. He says that they are asking for some kind of package that revolves around a player and a pick. He also mentions that two teams they have had lots of talks with are the Tampa Bay Lightning and the Carolina Hurricanes.
— NHL Network (@NHLNetwork) August 29, 2019
Analysis: Friedman mentioned that Carolina probably isn’t willing to give up a pick at this time. However, he mentioned both teams would think about swapping a prospect for Puljujarvi. Jesse Puljujarvi has made it fairly obvious he doesn’t wish to stick around in Edmonton. He even signed with a Finnish team the other day. This has left the Oilers in a tough spot.
On one hand, you can’t just give him away for nothing like Edmonton has seen in some other past deals. But if he returns to Finland you won’t gain anything from it either. It makes sense why they are holding out trying to find a deal that fits.
On the other side, it makes sense that Tampa or Carolina wouldn’t want to spend much for him. Puljujarvi wasn’t given a great shot in Edmonton but he also didn’t produce so there certainly is a risk. However, he clearly had the talent as he was picked fourth overall a few drafts ago. It seems likely a team will take a flyer on him and it’s even more possible it actually works out.
Rumour: Scott Billeck of the Toronto Sun noted that Nikolaj Ehlers has been a very popular name in trade rumour circles this season. He also goes on to mention that it would likely be a mistake for the Jets to move on from him.
Analysis: This is a very level-headed take that really makes a lot of sense. The article goes into looking at how past normal numbers, Ehlers advanced numbers are really solid too. He is very good at controlling shot possession as well as moving the puck up the ice. In today’s NHL a strong transition game is key.
The Jets lost some big players on their blueline this season and will need guys like Sami Niku to really step up. The only possible scenario where moving Ehlers would make sense is if the blue line isn’t up to par. Even in that case, the return would need to be absolutely worth it. A young defenceman who is clearly ready to be a guy who can play near the first pair. Ehlers is, at worst, a very good second-line winger. He can very easily be a 1st line wing on most teams too and it just doesn’t make sense to move on from him just because.
Adding in the fact that he is so young and is just entering his prime now, it seems very reasonable to say that the Jets would lose a trade if they sent him packing. The situation would have to make absolutely perfect sense and there doesn’t appear to be many fits like that out there.
Rumour: We end NHL Rumours with TSN’s Darren Dreger stating that the NHL likely will not re-open new negotiations for a new CBA. Meaning that if the NHLPA also chooses not to there would be no lockout.
Based on progressive discussions with the NHLPA, expect the NHL to announce within a day or two it’s intent to decline its option to re-open the CBA.
— Darren Dreger (@DarrenDreger) August 29, 2019
Analysis: This doesn’t come as a huge shock as the NHL didn’t have a ton of leverage and also should be relatively happy with the current deal. It suits them pretty well and while there will always be things they want to improve, there didn’t appear to be any massive issue.
The NHLPA, on the other hand, may potentially choose to re-open negotiations again. There are bigger issues that they have and it could be possible we see them decide to try and negotiate. However, there has been no indication either way and therefore, this can be seen as one step closer to not having a lockout.
That is all we have for NHL Rumours today! Make sure to tune in again every day for the latest of all the league’s rumours.