NHL Rumor Mill – April 11, 2017
Latest on John Tavares, Claude Giroux, Alex Edler and Ryan Spooner in your NHL rumor mill.
NEWSDAY: Neil Best reports many teams would love to a superstar such as New York Islanders center John Tavares on their rosters. He is a year away from unrestricted free agency and can begin contract negotiations in July.
Tavares maintains his desire to remain with the Islanders but there will be much to discuss with the Isles front office in the coming weeks, such as the club’s future. However, those talks will be conducted internally. If the Isles and Tavares fail to agree to a long-term extension, Best believes there could be pressure to trade him.
SPECTOR’S NOTE: Like it or not, Isles fans, speculation over Tavares’ future will be a hot topic in the rumor mill come June. The longer he goes without a new contract, the more he’ll be a fixture in offseason trade chatter.
PHILLY.COM: Marcus Hayes believes the Philadelphia Flyers should at least listen to offers for team captain Claude Giroux this summer. Doing so would free up $9 million annually in cap space over the next four seasons, providing flexibility to acquire younger talent. It would also allow head coach Dave Hakstol to own the room next season.
SPECTOR’S NOTE: Hayes acknowledged that Flyers GM Ron Hextall recently said he’s disinclined to trade Giroux or Jake Voracek. He also noted Giroux has a full no-movement clause. The Flyers captain recently said he wants to stay in Philly and isn’t seeking a trade. Unless Hextall gets an offer he can’t refuse and convinces Giroux to waive his clause, don’t expect to see the center playing elsewhere next season.
VANCOUVER SUN: Jeff Paterson included defenseman Alex Edler waiving his no-trade clause among the 10 things he’d like to see from the Vancouver Canucks next season. He believes Edler looked dispirited and disinterested this season and needs a change of scenery.
SPECTOR’S NOTE: Edler’s given no indication he wants to move on. Perhaps Canucks management will try to convince him to do so. Even then, his $5 million annual cap hit through 2018-19 and injury history could hurt his trade value.
THE BOSTON GLOBE: Fluto Shinzawa reports pending restricted free agent forward Ryan Spooner’s agent could seek more than $3 million annually on a new contract for his client. Spooner is eligible for arbitration this summer and Shinzawa wonders if he’ll get that raise with the Bruins or elsewhere. He enters the 2017 playoffs as their fourth-line center and a power-play specialist. He expects the Bruins will protect Spooner in the expansion draft.
SPECTOR’S NOTE: Spooner’s name surfaced a couple of times earlier this season in the rumor mill. That trade talk faded following their midseason coaching change, but it could crop up again in June. His situation could be worth watching this summer.