A list of the top-30 UFAs, plus the latest on Matt Beleskey, T.J. Oshie, Jiri Hudler, Bryan Bickell, Cam Talbot, Patrick Sharp and more.
TSN’s top-30 UFA list.
TSN: Minnesota Wild goaltender Devan Dubnyk tops this year’s list of unrestricted free agents. Other notables include Washington’s Mike Green, Nashville’s Cody Franson, LA’s Justin Williams, Boston’s Adam McQuaid, San Jose’s Antti Niemi, Chicago’s Brad Richards, Pittsburgh’s Paul Martin and Winnipeg’s Drew Stafford.
Beleskey headed to UFA market.
SPORTSNET: Chris Johnston reports Anaheim Ducks winger Matt Beleskey is headed to free agency next week. GM Bob Murray claims Beleskey rejected the club’s best offer.
SPECTOR’S NOTE: No word on what that offer was. It’s speculated the 27-year-old Beleskey could seek over $4 million per season on a four-year deal. Considering how shallow this summer’s UFA pool is, he could get that, perhaps more.
Blues could move a veteran forward.
STLTODAY.COM: Jeff Gordon reports Blues GM Doug Armstrong might be willing to part with one of his veteran forwards. That could include T.J. Oshie, Patrik Berglund or even David Backes. Gordon believes moving Oshie makes the most sense, as he’s been good, but not great, for the Blues. He speculates Florida or Pittsburgh could be a good fit. Backes could attract more interest because of his grit, skill and leadership.
SPECTOR’S NOTE: I’ve said for weeks Oshie is the more likely candidate. Unlike Backes, Oshie lacks a no-trade clause and I still believe he’s the guy who gets moved if there’s a decent deal to be had.
Updates on Hudler and Talbot.
SPORTSNET 960 (via TODAY’S SLAPSHOT): Elliotte Friedman wonders if the Pittsburgh Penguins might be a good fit for Calgary Flames winger Jiri Hudler. He also believes the Flames will try to move goalie Jonas Hiller.
TSN 1260 (via TODAY’S SLAPSHOT): Darren Dreger reports the New York Rangers rejected an offer of two second-round picks for backup goalie Cam Talbot.
SPECTOR’S NOTE: Friedman’s not saying the Flames are shopping Hudler, only speculating if he might be a good fit with the Penguins. I just don’t see the Flames moving Hudler after he had such terrific chemistry this season with Sean Monahan and Johnny Gaudreau. While Hudler is a UFA next summer, the Flames don’t have to rush into anything with him this summer.
As for Talbot, no word on which team offered the two second-round picks. While it’s natural to assume it’s Edmonton or Buffalo, who each have two picks in this year’s second round, it could’ve also been an offer from another club of a second round this season and one next season. Wouldn’t surprise me if the Rangers are trying to get a good young player back or perhaps see if they can land a first round selection.
Latest on the Blackhawks.
TSN 1260 (via TODAY’S SLAPSHOT): Darren Dreger reports hearing the Arizona Coyotes may have some interest in Chicago Blackhawks winger Bryan Bickell. The Blackhawks seek a draft pick or picks in return, while the Coyotes could use some help reaching next season’s salary-cap floor.
SPECTOR’S NOTE: It’s believed the ‘Hawks seek a first-round pick, top prospect and a young player in return for Sharp. Daresay that asking price will drop in the coming days. As for the Coyotes and Bickell, while Arizona can afford him, they need depth in skilled centers more than a left winger. Still, if they wish to add some veteran depth and use up some cap space, Bickell could be worthwhile.