NHL Rumor Mill – August 29, 2018

by | Aug 29, 2018 | Rumors | 51 comments

Updates on Max Pacioretty and Tyler Seguin in your NHL rumor mill.

Lack of progress in contract talks with the Canadiens increases speculation over Max Pacioretty’s future in Montreal. (Photo via NHL Images)


TSN: Montreal Canadiens captain Max Pacioretty confirmed there’s been no contract talks with general manager Marc Bergevin during his charity golf tournament on Tuesday. If negotiations don’t begin soon, it’s expected the Canadiens will trade Pacioretty before next February’s trade deadline rather than lose him to free agency next July. He’s expected to report to training camp on Sept. 14.

SPORTSNET: Eric Engels believes Pacioretty’s days with the Canadiens are numbered. Even if a trade doesn’t materialize the chances of re-signing with the club appear dead. A trade that would’ve shipped him to the Los Angeles Kings during the 2018 NHL Draft fell through as he declined to sign a six-year, $36-million contract extension. During that period, Pacioretty replaced Pat Brisson as his agent with Allan Walsh. He doesn’t appear to be holding his breath waiting for a contract offer. The longer he goes without getting one, the more his inevitable departure will dominate.

MONTREAL GAZETTE: Pat Hickey reports Bergevin and Canadiens owner Geoff Molson declined to discuss Pacioretty’s contract status with the media yesterday. He speculates contract term and dollars could be among the factors holding up negotiations, suggesting the Pacioretty camp could seek a seven- or eight-year deal. The market dictates he could receive between $7-$8 million annually, though Hickey thinks Pacioretty could seek a sweetener after being underpaid on his current contract. He believes a failure to negotiate on the Canadiens part could come back to haunt them if they can’t trade him and his value rises in the free-agent market.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: I don’t doubt Bergevin and Molson would love to move Pacioretty before the start of the season but they’re not dealing from a position of strength right now. Perhaps that will change as the season progresses and playoff contenders seeking scoring punch look to bolster their rosters.

 Pacioretty’s apparent unwillingness to ink a contract extension with teams interested in acquiring him doesn’t help the Canadiens’ efforts to trade him. Then again, they could attempt to pull off a sign-and-trade, though teams could be leery about doing that until they’ve had a chance to evaluate his play this season. If Pacioretty regains his 30-goal form this season it will improve his value in the trade market and could improve the chances of a sign-and-trade scenario.

Rumors last season linked Pacioretty to the Kings, San Jose Sharks, St. Louis Blues and Florida Panthers. I think the Kings signing of Ilya Kovalchuk and the Blues’ recent acquisitions of Ryan O’Reilly, Tyler Bozak, David Perron and Patrick Maroon takes those clubs out of the running. Sharks GM Doug Wilson is always on the lookout for a big addition and Pacioretty could be in his sights, though the re-signing of Evander Kane could change that. The Pacioretty-to-Florida rumors were based in part on his owning a home in Boca Raton but he recently put it up for sale


TSN: Dallas Stars center Tyler Seguin said contract extension talks remain at a standstill, expressing his disappointment not to have a deal in place with training camp approaching. He adds he’s focused on the upcoming season and looks forward to having a good year. There’s speculation the annual average value of his new deal could match that of John Tavares’ $11 million with the Toronto Maple Leafs. Last month, Stars GM Jim Nill said he hoped to re-sign Seguin before the start of the season but that wasn’t a hard deadline.

THE HOCKEY NEWS: Ken Campbell suggests Seguin could become next summer’s version of John Tavares if he hits the free-agent market. He notes Seguin has outscored Tavares over the past five years and sits tied for second with Pittsburgh’s Sidney Crosby in goals during that stretch behind Washington’s Alex Ovechkin. Campbell wonders if the Stars are willing to pay Seguin more than captain Jamie Benn’s eight-year, $76-million contract.

THE ATHLETIC: Sean Shapiro reports there were deeper negotiations during the 2018 NHL Draft in Dallas between the Stars and the Seguin camp. The two sides have spoken since then but there’s no indication they’ve made progress if Seguin is expressing disappointment. Nill said there’s no update but dialogue continues. The talk is based upon where the market is going for a player like Seguin. Multiple sources claims the Stars had reservations in the past over paying a player more than Benn. It’s unclear if that attitude still holds but that approach won’t help them re-sign Seguin, who’s expressed his desire to stay in Dallas. 

SPECTOR’S NOTE: If the focus is on market value, Seguin’s representatives could be seeking a cap hit comparable to Tavares. If that’s the case, the Stars front office will have to decide if they’re comfortable paying that much while Benn earns less. If Benn doesn’t have an issue with it then it solely depends upon how much more the Stars are willing to pay Seguin.

Like Pacioretty, the longer Seguin goes without a new contract the more speculation there will be over his future. The Stars won’t be shopping Seguin now but that could change come February if they’re struggling to reach the playoffs.



  1. As most of you know, I’m not a Habs fan.

    That said— I don’t think Patches is being treated very fairly.

    With my limited knowledge of “Sign and Trade”, I’m seeking answers from the gang here on the following:

    1) is it truly that the current team signs an NHL extension for their player and THEN moves him (in other words, if they change their mind on the trade after player signs, they could keep him as the contract at time of signing is with the “current” team????)

    2)or is it current team allowing player’s agent to discuss and have in place, a conditionally signed contract, effective immediately upon trade?

    3)This feeble minded individual can’t recall a “sign and trade” case — what are some examples of recent ones

    Thanks in advance

    • 2 issues in play, legal & ethical here. Have you ever promised your wife, family or a friend you would do something & changed your mind? Ha-ha!

      We have heard rumours of situations in the past where a player claims he was made a promise only to have it not met from the player’s position later.

      That’s why we have laws & the NHL a CBA. If a player signs with a team assuming its a sign & trade & the team didn’t then honour the deal I assume the player would withhold services, get suspended without pay & it plays out. Under the CBA the team has no obligation to honour a verbal agreement. As far as the NHL is concerned there is no such thing. That’s why the NHL has a central registry that reviews & validates contracts.

      Over the years there have been numerous sign & trades. It has more to do with the leverage in play than anything else & that leverage swings both ways, teams have it early, players later. I would be very surprised if Patches does a sign & trade. In the situations where it has happened, it has more to do with how the signing makes that player more appealing in trade & the deal wasn’t on the table at the point of signing it just manifested right after the fact. Now that said that may well have been the teams intention if that makes any sense. This is a business & teams are going to do what serves their interests.

      • Thanks Striker

        I guess in the same mindset— the “receiving” team could renege on their trade promise and leave the “current” team holding a contract that they originally had not intention of signing.

        What is the biggest (read most high profile) sign-and-trade contract in the last few years?

        Thanks again


      • I’m pressed for time today, leaving Chicago heading back to the west coast of Canada. I’m sure others will weigh in. I’ll post a few in the coming days.

      • Ottawa signed Hossa for 3 years/$18M and then traded him to Atlanta within a few days for Heatley and de Vries. That was in 2005 and I’m assuming there has been a few since then.

        Hossa was blindsided by this and expected to stay in Ottawa long term. Rumour has it that Chara refused to sign with Ottawa after one of his best friends was screwed by Muckler and the rest is history for Boston. I’ve never gotten confirmation on that, but it was a very dumb move keeping Redden over Chara. May have cost Ottawa the Cup vs. Anaheim.

      • Thanks Striker

        Safe flight

        Anybody else can fill me in on recent “sign-and-trade” situations?


      • I’m not sure there has been, officially, a sign and trade in the cap era in the NHL.

        Turris may be the closest; he signed an extension with the Preds shortly after the OTT/COL trade but I would guarantee that was agreed upon before Nashville agreed to give up the assets they traded away.

      • Thanks Van and Double Minor

        Had meetings so just getting back to reading these now

      • Could not the new contract have a clause where the player signs his team signs and the team he is going to be traded to signs.

        The clause would state who the player is contractually obligated to play for. Who is obligated to pay the agreed salary stated in the contract and what pieces are traded to make the deal valid.

        Seems.pretty simple to me to write this up on one piece of paper and have all 3 concerned parties sign.

        “Sign and trade.”

        Not “sign then trade.”

    • ” I don’t think Patches is being treated very fairly.”

      Oh really, in what way? He is currently playing under a contract that he agreed to sign. How is that unfair. No one put a gun to his head. Montreal obviously interested in re-signing. How is that “unfair”. They are waiting for a good offer. How is that unfair? Montreal owes him nothing more that the money is owed on his current contract.

      You have a very strange notion of fairness

      • Hi LMacD

        sorry if my post only inferred unfair treatment by the Habs organization. Media and/or other teams publicly perceived interest/no interest etc., as well as previous posts on this board, to be included in my perceived overall “unfair” treatment.

        Just, IMO over-all “unfairly”.

        Re: “Montreal obviously interested in re-signing.” This may very well be true. However, the true interests of the Habs is not known absolutely.

        I like Patches and just think he is not being respected (overall) at the level that IMO , he is warranted.

        It may just be timing, current roster make-up of other teams, etc. delaying any trade and/or extension– who knows; but IMO a trade (now, soon , trade deadline) may work out as a true win win win (Mon, other team, Patches) down the road.

        Again, sorry for wording my post in a way that was interpreted that I was solely speaking w.r.t. Habs.

    • Please describe his unfair treatment?

      • Hi Ed

        Please see my post above

        Sorry re posting that was interpreted as focusing solely on Habs

      • Unfairly treated? Hell no. But 6×6? Good for patches for laughing that offer out the room

    • Hers outside thinking Patches for Sequin and let the new clubs try to sign each one
      Gets rid of headaches for both clubs

    • Hey Pengy, I’m stuck for sign and trade examples, I think it happens more in the NBA where it allows teams to circumvent their cap system. The problem with a scenario like that is it creates advantage for the trading team but does little for the player who could have simply waited to sign with the other team. By increasing his trade value Patches would indirectly harm himself by costing his new team more assets that could have helped him win in his new location.

      • Thanks StyxCan

        Was at meetings and just getting to those now


    • Montreal is treating him like a dog.. He had an off season last year but otherwise has been a consistent 30 goal scorer and your captain??? Considering montreal has few good players what the ????k?

    • When a team trades a player they are actually trading a contract. Whatever is signed is what is being acquired in full, with some exceptions such as no trade clauses which once waived may or may not remain with the contract, such as Subban who signed a deal with Montreal which had a no trade clause that would have gone into effect after the trade but Nashville did not honor nor did they have to, that part of the contract.

      Tomas Tatar signed a 5 year deal with the Wings which had a no trade clause in it that went into effect July 1st of this year in his second year of the contract. As of now, he has a no trade clause in his contract and Vegas can not trade him unless he waives it.

  2. I think we are going to start to see more situations where players simply walk as UFA’s at contracts end. The NHL has become very competitive, the top end of rosters are consuming so much cap space that solid depth players 2nd & high 3rd line players are choosing to walk for better playing opportunities & monies elsewhere.

    Teams will have to make hard choice as to whether to retain a player for their playoff run hoping they can retain them in the summer or follow the StL. model. StL. traded Shattenkirk & Stastny in back to back deals at the trade deadline 2 years in a row. Trading Stastny appears to have cost StL. a playoff spot last season, they missed by 1 point. That trade was very odd but StL apparently choose to get something as opposed to the monies even 1 playoff round would have yielded. Not sure this is a great message to send to players & fans. Schenn certainly wasn’t happy as he was very vocal in the press following this trade.

    I believe in the next CBA free agent status will be dropping yet again as its 1 of the few things NHL teams appear willing to concede in negotiations. Also, we appear to be seeing players who 1 would assume would get longer deals signing 1 or 2 years from UFA status which is a very new development. This is like playing Russian roulette for me.

    Players with arbitration rights are also coming into play in a very similar fashion. Stone, Trouba & Ceci all just took arbitration settlements making them UfA’s very soon, for Stone next summer, Trouba & Ceci the summer following.

    • Except in those cases where the wife puts her foot down and says no, I like it here – the kids have their friends and are established in school … I’m tired of moving around. If we can’t look after our future after making X millions then we’re idiots. That, too, could start to happen more and more.

      • Agreed George and it swings the other way as well, where a wife says we are out of here as shenanigans come into play when people spend a ton of time hanging out together. Jeff Brown, Pronger & Kesler all come to mind.

        Then we have the kids are partying too much & teams break them up or send them packing. Seguin, Simmonds, Richards, Carter, etc. All these players moved for reasons that had nothing to do with hockey if rumours are to be believed.

    • George and Striker,

      Concur that more and more “move”/”stay” decisions are affected by more personal issues (most predominantly family).

      Winning, $’s, teammates play a substantial part but in reality their NHL life is reasonably short relative to life-time as a spouse/father.

      I’ve never been a pro athlete (failed at longshot with NHL and less so with CFL) but my personal career decisions have been affected by family.

      Early on as I was starting a family I had a very lucrative offer to become a CEO but it would have required me to move not only away from the Metropolis I was born and raised in, but to another Country (USA); 3 time zones away. In the end, we decided as a couple (with a baby at the time)… I stayed. I’ve not regretted it but have wondered what would have happened. I likely could have retired at 50 🙂

      Not taking into consideration my wife’s viewpoint at that time… who knows…. would we still have decided to have 4 kids? Would we have moved young family again if another “lucrative” offer came along?

      It has to be tough on these “kids” in their late 20’s, just starting a family, and making a life-changing decision on where to sign.

      Look no further to what Jonathan Marschesault (sp?) stated when signing what appeared at the time (and continues to be) below market value…. family was the key deciding factor in staying and signing for lower value… in that he’d played professionally in 5 or 6 different locations over his young family’s life and constant moving was a strain. He wanted more stability for his young family (3 kids I believe).

      Sorry for coming across as “weepy”… just my 2 cents (2 cents Canadian BTW!!) worth.

      • I think most adults our age have the same issues. They may be professional athletes but they have the same life issues we all face. Dobber has been addressing an odd dynamic. The birth of children & losing downtime, rest. He discussed perry, Talbot. I raised the issue of Pietro in StL just having triplets! That is going to be a serious time consumer when he’s home. Will it affect his production & play? How

      • Sorry, it dropped the last part of the final sentence. How could it not.

  3. if the Stars refuse to pay Seguin more than Benn, then there is no chance they acquire Erik Karlsson. He’ll want the same or more (cap hit) that Doughty got, > $10.5M per

    • Agreed. If he was willing to sign for less than Benn it would have happened already. Inflation is running rampant in the NHL & Benn was signed on July 15, 2016. Seguin is also younger than Benn when he signed that deal.

      No reason Seguin shouldn’t get Tavares monies.

    • Have to factor in that Texas has no state income tax. On an annual salary of $10m in California your state tax will be approximately $1.35m. Add in the high cost of living and it could be argued that $8m in Texas is worth as much, if not more, than $10m in Cali.

      • Additionally, in Ottawa on the same $10m salary the Provincial tax would be approximately $2m.

  4. Comment on Yesterday; Chrism you say Wheeler deserves a massive pay day. What is a massive pay day for Wheeler?
    I put my opinion out there 5yrs at $6.5 and stand by it. Wheeler will be 32 on August 31st. If Winnipeg decides to sign Wheeler to 7yrs at $8m ***Massive Pay Day*** that would be a mistake in my opinion. Granted Wheeler has played his best hockey at the age of 31, has real good wheels and is the heart and soul of the team.
    With all that said no way Winnipeg should pay him $8m at 7yrs. If Wheeler was to win the Hart Trophy this year, I still not signing him for 7yrs unless the average is at $4m or $4.5
    In the last 3 yrs less then 6% of the top 30 goal scorer are over the age of 32yrs, the consistency of the Sedin Twins help keep that number up there.
    You could say that i’m penalizing Wheeler because of his age and that would be correct.
    Most agree Wheeler will get a much better offer from another team and if a team is willing to offer Wheeler 7yrs at 8m per, then Winnipeg is best to thanks Wheeler for his services and wish him the best of luck.

    • I pretty much agree Caper. #’s may vary nominally but teams need to make these hard decisions. In a cap world at least until the NHL comes out of the next lockout & their new deal pays out after year 1 of its implementation the cap isn’t rising as fast as salaries the reason players forfeit monies in escrow.

      Paying the top end of your roster so much of your cap space isn’t sustainable in this current CBA market with the quality of players coming rapidly and teams improving from such.

      If you want to be a serious cup contender in the coming NHL you are going to need to pay far more than just 4 to 6 players. Just look at the depth of TB & Win’s rosters & the cap implications coming fast. Several other teams right there with them as well.

      It will take several more years for it to fully play out & hopefully the next CBA & TV contract will solve this issue. Perhaps we get another free buyout window to help restabilise the market & get a bunch of these players with huge cap hits off the books at this time.

      • Sorry, should read their new TV Deal pays out after its 1st season in existence.

    • Winnipeg is in their cup winning window NOW, they would be fools to let Wheeler walk. If Wheeler wants to win the cup, he’ll agree to a reasonable contract. A deal will get done IMO.
      That being said, you are looking at 7y x 6.5M or 5y x $8M range.

      • Shorter the term higher the cap hit. I sure hope Win finds a way to retain the vast majority of this group. It’s only going to work if all accept fair market value & don’t leverage max dollars out of Win that they could get if on the open market as UFA’s. The only 1’s of concern short term are Wheeler, Myers & 1 season following Trouba. The rest are all coming out of their ELC’s for the most part so easier for Win to get manageable cap hits with bridge deals where necessary.

      • Look at Joe Thornton in San Jose. Had a series of 3 year deals, followed by 2- 1 year deals. Like to think Wheeler would have same relationship with Jets as far as playing as long as he can for fair value year to year

    • Agreed Caper, which is why I think WPG walks from Wheeler after the upcoming season. I agree and can’t see a team offering him more than a 5 year deal as he will be 33 when the 1st season starts on that deal, although I can see it being more than $6.5 per.
      I also think there is a chance he would stay in WPG for less than than what the open market will pay as the quality of the team matters and it seems like he is the type of guy that wants to win with the team he has helped build for years. You would know that better than me as you live there.
      But when I look at their roster and prospects I still don’t resign him at your # as it will cost you somebody on your blue line where they have less depth, either Myers or Trouba. Having said that if Trouba does want to sign in the US as some suggested last year, then that changes the entire equation.

    • You summed my answer up for me caper. There’s should and then there’s reality. If wheeler goes to ufa multiple gms will line up to pay him 7+ mil for 7 years. My question is do you think peg should do this ? You don’t obviously. Then do you think they try to move him? Do you think he would take a discount on years and money to stay? If so why? Wheeler can demand seven years and he will get it from someone… if he chooses to

  5. Any professional athlete know they can be traded. it’s part of their sport. You can always be traded and you can always say no and walk away.
    That applies to real life jobs or careers, personally I transfer 13 times in my previous career; once informed at 10am and a plane waiting for me at noon hour to take me to my next designation, I suppose so I didn’t have time to think about it.
    However with the new cba we see more and more players demanding a no trade clause; which I feel isn’t so much about no being traded but controlling where you can get traded.

    • an old fan’s viewpoint…not going to happen…I think the next CBA…should have a tax against the cap for every no trade and a higher tax for no move clauses…not family friendly I realize….I don’t want this sport going the way of baseball and the NBA…too old fashioned I fear for the real world

      • What I’d REALLY like to see is something more like the NFL – no guaranteed contracts. You get the big buck you’d better produce or you’re cut free in the off season (March in the NFL’s case) to make whatever other deal you can.

      • You & me both George.

        That said no 1 is forcing GM’s to sign these older 30+ players for 6+ years at huge cap hits. A serious CBA flaw in the formula. If contracts had to be incurred against the cap in real dollars, not cap dollars you would see significantly less of this going on then sending players to Lupul island at the back end.

        I assume the NHL will keep nibbling away at these issues. You can’t fix everything in 2 lockouts. The next 1 will add far more stability but we probably need at least 1 more lockout after the next 1 to get a fairly solid playing field in place & all teams being on a more equal footing between the haves & have-nots.

      • That would be so only be ok George if it works both ways. If a player underperforms then they can get cut. But if a man player over performs they can renegotiate with a new team if they want. Otherwise the league edges towards the embarrassment of being like the nfl

      • Totally agree chrisms. I should have put that proviso in my initial post since that’s the way I see it as well – a two-way street. Maybe if that was the way things were done for the past few seasons Bobby Ryan might have dumped his kid-leather driving gloves for a pair of proper hockey gloves:)

      • Of course then it almost becomes just year to year contracts… it doesn’t work though because of the rfa rules. Players earn those guaranteed contracts by playing for significantly less than market value for several years and the multiple more years where their bargaining power is severely diminished. So if that was gone to institute the one off contracts Mathews for example is making 10+ mil this year.

    • Chrism, I believe Winnipeg is a strong cup contender this year. I’m not trading Wheeler or Myers who is also a schedule UFA nor am i trading Trouba.
      I believe Winnipeg need all the above to win the cup and it’s a risk that Wheeler and Myers could leave next season for nothing in return, the risk is worth the reward.
      I’m a big Wheeler fan and hope he resigns with Winnipeg and believe he will but not over pay. 3yrs at 8m and 2yr at $4.25 or 5yrs at $6.5 that is how i arrived at my number.

  6. I mentioned this issue in a post yesterday, could not agree more with George and Striker that the expensive long-term contracts for 30+ players are ultimately harmful to a team’s ability to remain contenders over the span of a decade. The Red Wings were lucky enough to experience their best years as a franchise before the salary cap era, and after it began, they won one cup with the group they had began assembling before it before beginning their slow decline as their veterans ate up huge chunks of salary.

    I like the notion of non-guaranteed contracts, but there is more to it than just giving teams the right to terminate. The players as a group are too powerful and such a demand would damage relations between players and ownership. The players would expect an equal right to absolve themselves from their obligation to complete a contract, and to make themselves free agents.

    And of course all such contract terminations would have to take place, like buy outs, during an off season week long window.

    If a player decides to cancel his contract and sign with another team, there would have to be a sort of compensation for the team the player left, a la offer sheets for RFAs (but with WAY less compensation) If a team terminates a contract, they would have to pay the player 1/4 of the salary that would have been earned on the next year of that contract, but would not have to swallow any of it in the cap hit.

    Some sort of arrangement like that would have to be put in place. I can’t see owners agreeing to let players just leave for nothing and I can’t see players agreeing to let teams cast them off for nothing.

  7. NHLPA never would go for non guaranteed contracts. I can already see the cap circumvention in high gear. Think about it

  8. So, Striker..,,

    I am now counting 9 posts from you since you told us you were “pressed for time” re your Chicago flight and unable to tell us about any of the “numerous” sign and
    you claim there have been.

    I like your stuff, generally, but I’m calling major bs on this one unless you can do better than that.

    • “sign and trades”

    • I think there is only 5-6 from the time he said he was pressed for time. Maybe he has exclusive rights to the concord fleet and he can fly from Chicago to Western Canada in 26 minutes?

  9. Seguin should head to free agency.
    It would be a circus like the Tavares signing.
    He would love it and get much more money than signing earlier with Dallas.
    I see Patches landing in New York area. Rangers,Islanders,Buffalo or New Jersey.