Carolina Hurricanes forward Jeff Skinner tries to ignore trade rumors, an update on Brock Nelson and the latest on the Boston Bruins. 

Skinner dogged by trade rumors. 

Carolina Hurricanes forward Jeff Skinner was the subject of trade speculation this summer.

Carolina Hurricanes forward Jeff Skinner was the subject of trade speculation this summer.

THE NEWS & OBSERVER: Chip Alexanders reports Carolina Hurricanes winger Jeff Skinner was dogged by trade rumors throughout the offseason. He has four years remaining on his contract worth $6 million annually in actual salary, but he lacks a no-trade clause. Skinner admitted speaking with agent Rick Curran a couple of times regarding his options, but claims he wants to remain with the Hurricanes. Skinner, 23, struggled last season after suffering the third concussion of his NHL career.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: The Hurricanes were reportedly shopping Skinner earlier this summer, likely gauging his trade value. When healthy and on his game, Skinner is a 30-goal producer, but his injury history probably dampened interest from rival clubs. He willl certainly attract more interest in the trade market if he returns to form, but it’ll also make him invaluable to the Hurricanes. 

Nelson still unsigned.

NEWSDAY’s Arthur Staple reports via Twitter there’s no update on New York Islanders RFA winger Brock Nelson, adding he has less than a week to re-sign with the Islanders.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Staple recently reported Nelson must re-sign with the Isles before their training camp opens on Sept. 16. The club has a long-standing rule that RFAs who aren’t signed by training camp will be forced to sit out the season. Nelson will probably re-sign before then, but I wonder if Islanders management might field trade offers for the winger if unable to reach an agreement. 

Updates on the Bruins defense.

CSNNE.COM: Joe Haggerty reports Boston Bruins GM Don Sweeney opted to pass on signing UFA defenseman Cody Franson (who has since signed with the Buffalo Sabres) in favor of giving his young defensemen ( Zach Trotman, Colin Miller and Joe Morrow ) a chance to prove themselves, as well as trying out Torey Krug and Adam McQuaid as top-four rearguards. If those young blueliners fail to make the cut, Haggerty speculates Sweeney could be in the market for “some of the big name blueliners that might become available, with names such as Dustin Byfuglien or Brent Seabrook.”

WEEI.COM: DJ Bean also noted the Bruins giving their young defenders a good look. He wonders if Sweeney might add a veteran UFA like Marek Zidlicky, though that might hamper the development of one of those youngsters.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: If Sweeney decides to pursue a big-name defenseman like Byfuglien or Seabrook, he could be waiting a while. I don’t believe either guy will be available (if at all) until much later in the season.