Sunday NHL Rumor Roundup – August 5, 2018

by | Aug 5, 2018 | Rumors | 39 comments

Latest on the Golden Knights and another look at the remaining notable unrestricted free agents in your NHL rumor mill.

WHAT NEXT FOR THE GOLDEN KNIGHTS?

LAS VEGAS SUN: In the wake of William Karlsson re-signing a one-year, $5.25-million contract with the Vegas Golden Knights, Jesse Granger reports defenseman Shea Theodore is their only remaining free agent. Theodore is coming off his entry-level deal and lacks arbitration rights. General manager George McPhee hopes to re-sign the young blueliner before the start of the season.

Vegas Golden Knights hope to re-sign defenseman Shea Theodore before the start of next season (Photo via NHL Images).

Granger also reports McPhee hinted at a possible move to bolster his forward lines. “We’re happy where we are,” said the Vegas GM. “If there’s an opportunity to upgrade at the forward position at any time over the next year we will.”

LAS VEGAS REVIEW-JOURNAL: Despite re-signing Karlsson to a one-year deal and with Theodore expected to re-sign, Ed Graney reports the Golden Knights aren’t any better on paper than they were in the 2018 Stanley Cup Final.

Graney raises some questions, wondering if they’re really convince Malcolm Subban is a capable long-term solution if starter Marc-Andre Fleury becomes sidelined again, if someone like Ryan Carpenter can steal a job, and if career performances by so many players last season could result in a natural regression in 2018-19.

He also wonders if the Golden Knights “would emerge from a handful of reported suitors” interested in Ottawa Senators defenseman Erik Karlsson.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: The Golden Knights definitely defied expectations last season. While I think they’re still good enough to be a playoff contender in 2018-19, I doubt they’ll make a return trip to the Stanley Cup Final.

Unlike many of McPhee’s peers who might have interest in acquiring Erik Karlsson or a skilled forward, he’s carrying considerable depth in draft picks (stick tap to Cap Friendly) and promising young players that could be used as trade bait. Doing so, however, could mean including the promising Theodore in the package or giving up a top prospect such as Cody Glass or Nick Suzuki. 

SPORTSNET’S LIST OF NOTABLE REMAINING UFAs.

SPORTSNET: Luke Fox recently updated his list of the NHL’s top-10 remaining unrestricted free agents. Topping the list is winger Rick Nash, though it remains uncertain if he’ll continue his career due to health and family concerns. Prior to the start of this summer’s UFA market, Nash told several teams (including the Columbus Blue Jackets) that he was sitting out the free-agent frenzy to contemplate his future. 

The remainder of Fox’s list includes defenseman Luca Sbisa (who at one point had reportedly been contacted by the Chicago Blackhawks), blueliner Tobias Enstrom, forward Mark Letestu, forward Mike Cammalleri (who got some interest from Avangard Omsk coach Bob Hartley in bringing him to the KHL), rearguard Alexei Emelin, goaltender Kari Lehtonen, center Nick Shore, winger Scott Hartnell (who recently conceded he could be headed toward retirement) and left wing Benoit Pouliot.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Apart from Nash, most of the others on this list could face going through professional tryouts during training camp to land new contracts for next season. Some could end up continuing their playing careers overseas. Some, like Hartnell, could be retiring.

It’ll be interesting to see if the Blackhawks have ongoing interest in Sbisa as they still need help on the blueline. The KHL could be the oft-injured Cammalleri’s best option to continue his playing career. Lehtonen might still draw some interest from teams in need of experienced goaltending depth. However, he could be a late-September or early-October signing as clubs evaluate their goalies during training camp and preseason play. 

 








39 Comments

  1. Malcolm Subban is still a rfa… between him and Theodore, how much cap space will be left for E Karlsson? Whatever young prospects they have, I don’t think it’s many since they’re still a new team…are they really going to deal away for EK??? As far as draft picks, they have a few extra 2nd and 3rd round picks over next 2 drafts. William Karlsson is a player I don’t see repeating success he had. Can he really shoot 23% again? Definitely think Vegas will have hard time making any noise next year. The one team that hasn’t been mentioned a lot in EK rumors is Calgary. They made the biggest offseason trade imo. Moving Hamilton creates perfect opportunity for EK to come in and take over top right D spot. All the Flames top players are locked up in multi year deals with nobody making 7 mil. If Karlsson is interested in playing there, they have the pieces to make a deal and they’d become a serious cup contenders

    • I would have thought if they wanted EK Hamilton would have been kept as part of the offer. What do they have on the back end to offer that is better than Hamilton to offer to OTT?

    • Vegas would really benefit from getting EK. Their defense is OK, lacks a real star and puck mover that will take them to another level. Knights won’t sneak up on anyone this year.

      Also wondering out loud if Vegas would consider talking to the Pens about Letang. Pens proved they could win the Cup a season ago without Letang.

      Vegas needs a premier defenseman.

      • Letang is not a premiun defenceman. He couldnt check a hat. With his injury history the offence he may supply isnt worth trading for.

        Penguins could probably get Patches, a prospect and a 1st round pick from the resident buffoon in Montreal for him though.

      • Depends on how you look at premium. He isn’t a top 10 d man in the league but he is still a legit number 1. Injuries I’ll grabt you. A slight step back last year as well. But he has an increasingly solid contract that gets better each year. And he drives offense among the best

    • Subban is signed for 650K next season. I assume Theodore will be bridged at or near 4 mil for 2 years.

      Barring further trades Vgs will have about 5 mil in cap space when they set their 23 man roster & on opening day when they designate Clarkson to LTIR another 5 mil giving them more than enough cap space to take on the other Karlsson.

      Let’s also not forget Vgs isn’t getting E. Karlsson with out giving something up off their current roster so no cap concerns what so ever.

      Vegas appears to still be 1 of the best options for EK, they can take Ryan’s contract as well shipping back Clarkson who is headed to LTIR & Ott can get 80% of his salary back from his insurance but help Ott stay cap compliant.

      I wouldn’t want to sacrifice Theodore to make it happen but something of significant value will have to move to make it happen.

      • Nice comments gang, better than many articles.

        If you place a player on ltir your can’t gain more than that players cap. It’s the difference between that players cap and what space you already have.

    • Subban is signed for next season.

  2. I think Brower should be on that list, as he’s already pretty much bought and paid for.
    And after Vegas dismantled its second line,I show them in the negative column. Not to mention they’re a little short on feel good Vegas strong MOJO after low balling Karlson.

    • Just read a McPhee interview where he discussed W Karlsson deal. Obvious he’s not sure either if Karlsson can repeat. He’s quoted as saying let’s see what he does next season and put a price on it.

      • I get that,..that’s why you don’t sign him to term. But to open negotiations at 3.5 after a 43 goal season and carried you to the show…was low ball. Not a great relationship builder Imo.

      • That’s just how arbitration goes, they did agree on a contract. The fact that Karlsson didn’t do anything before last year and it’s doubtful his shooting percentage stays over 20%, it’s up to him to go out and earn a long term deal. Maybe he’ll be a part of deal for E Karlsson?

    • I assume Vegas will extend wild Bill shortly after Jan. 1. He will Center Marchesseault for several years.

      I don’t want to under estimate Vegas I did that all year right up to the Stanley Cup final but can’t see them getting back to the cup.

      The roster is still solid & similar. Lost were Perron & Neal essentially replaced by Stastny & Tatar forcing Hauka to LW or if he gets bumped to 3rd line C Eakin to RW.

      Teams will be better prepared to face Vegas but they are still going to be a solid team playing the same system.

      Very curious to see what happens for them in year 2 as what they accomplished in year 1 was amazing & great for the game.

      • Sorry dropped the tail end of a sentence. Will Center Marchesseault & Smith for several years.

    • Vegas has to many forwards currently that need to clear waivers. I assume Carpenter or Lindberg will have to be waived come the 23 man roster deadline but both may clear & if 1 is lost not the end of the world.

      Marchesseault, Karlsson, Smith.
      Haula, Stastny, Tuch.
      Carrier, Eakin, Tatar.
      Carrier, Belenerre, Reaves.
      Spare. Carpenter.

      I’m curious to see if Vegas breaks up McNabb & Schmidt both lefties with the acquisition of Holden to balance out the righties & lefties.

      • Sorry Nosek should be the #4 LW. Carrier missed a ton of games due to injury & Tatar can play either side.

        If Glass or Suzuki is NHL ready Vegas will be in a great spot when injuries hit or they need to make a trade.

  3. I know dealing Karlsson to Toronto would be PR suicide for OTT, but r they not already doing that?

    Why do the Leafs not offer their #1 pick for the next 3 years for Karlsson?

    With their depth and talent at F, they need to make zero changes/improvements there, and Anderson in net is certainly not a concern.

    The only issues to be addressed are on D where moving Hainsey to the third pairing with Dermot would be sweet, maintain the Gardiner/Zaitsev pairing and then Rielly and Karlsson as the top pairing.

    There is currently more than enough cap space for the Leafs to now just take on Karlsson without moving out any salary, even after signing Nylander to a new $6-$7m per year long term deal, and the already acquired prospect pool is more than deep enough to sustain a few years without a #1 pick, especially if it means a chance at winning the cup!!! Adding Karlsson would certainly do that!

    Marleau/Tavares/Marner
    Hyman/Matthews/Nylander
    Leivo/Kadri/Brown
    Johnsson/Lindholm/Kapanen
    (3rd and 4th line wingers are interchangeable and Ennis as the extra/13th F)

    Rielly/Karlsson
    Gardiner/Zaitsev
    Dermott/Hainsey
    (Carrick/Borgman/Holl/Liljegren as the #7 D)

    Anderson
    McIlhenney

    Looks like a cup contender to me!

    I know 3x #1 picks is a STEEP price to pay for a pending UFA, but bringing a cup to Toronto is PRICELESS! It would be worth it, and who knows what can be done as far as re-signing Karlsson to a discounted long term deal if he goes to a winning situation for years to come like the one in Toronto!

    Thoughts?

    • Karlsson has publicly stated he expects to get paid what he’s worth. Zero chance Toronto could sign him long term after adding Tavares. Giving up picks and not moving any contracts out? Where is the cap space to sign EK, Matthews and Mariner, + others after season???

      • No need to sign EK after the season if they win the cup! Bring in the hired gun, get the big silver trophy and bring up the kids to replace EK and Gardiner on the back end.

        Win a cup = mission accomplished!

      • Marner will get $7m and Matthews $10m. Both long term and then we have JT/AM/MM/WN locked in long term and the depth of back end prospects allows the spots there to be filled in internally and on the cheap.

      • How is Tor getting Mattew’s signed at 2.5 mil a year less than McDavid 1 year later? If they can let’s give Dubas executive of the year immediately.

        Marner at 7 may be possible if they get him extended now. If next summer I say it could cost 2 mil more.

        The market is some what skewed today. McDavid’s contract is pulling up the top end rapidly yet some teams have garnered exceptional value regardless.

    • That’s a nice dream but if I”m Ott why on earth would I take 3 late first round picks for Karlson? Especially when at least one of the other teams in the league is going to offer me a package that includes young players who are already in or close to the show?

      • Where are these “better” offers??? I have heard/seen NOTHING as rumours go so far for EK. With the draft and free agency done at this point, teams KNOW what their $$$ situation will be like for this year, so where are the offers for EK?

      • They would get a better offer at the deadline than that. Three almost certain non lotto 1sts. Or a 1st plus top prospect plus another asset which is what they will get at the deadline when there can be tons of suitors

      • Hollywood Hudon has been watching too many Hollywood Movies. Trading Ek for 3 firsts, but the firsts are not top 5. So this pipe dream he has is what it is. Dream On. You’d have to give a roster player, Nylander or Kadri, plus a first and a prospect – Ottawa will not fulfil your pipe dream.

    • HH

      I can’t see Dorion only taking pics …. He’ll want a good young D, plus a 1st , plus a prospect …. at least

      The media has repeatedly indicated that a Dorion EK deal with Dall would include Heiskanen (sp?); VGK ….Theo; TBay …. Serg

      IMO Leafs don’t have a comparable young D prospect to offer up ; AND I just can’t see the $’s working in 19/20 ++ …. in addition IMO there is no way they are just looking at EK for one year

      I know Slick 62 mentioned Cgy …. and of course this would be a great boost to a team that made good moves recently … but who is the comparable young D (to Heisk, Theo, Serg) coming back?

      What has to be weighed in on the offer is likliehood of getting EK extended once aquired…

      I believe Dal, VGK, TBay remain the “real” contenders. The three teams are in locales with same taxes … so take home will be the same on identical offers. I don’t think any of the 3 would be shy in awarding a SB heavy contract.

      EK like any other player, wants to win the SC. I believe of the 3 the best chance is with TBay…. and he is friends and fellow countryman of Hedman

      TBay , on top of Serg has great prospects in Raddysh and Kachouk ; but technically doesn’t have a 1st in ’19 (to NYR unless they don’t win SC)… if they aquired EK IMO a fav for cup. Their issue lies in Cap space … and Callahan a must to move

      Dall has a first; has Heisk (greatly coveted but yet to play in NHL) but not as full a cupboard of prospects; and even with EK added, not a Cup Fav (less of a draw for EK to re-sign)

      VGK has a first; Theo has already played and played well; could take on BR contract; has many prospects and pics; more of a cup fav with EK than Dall IMO but nowhere near as much a cup fav as TBay

      IMO TBay and VGK more likely to get EK

      Further…. I think it’s the Callahan situation or the Melnyk insisting on BR moving with EK that will decide it

      I’m a Leafs/Pens fan so would like him in Dall or Vegas but my gut has an odd feeling that Stevie Y gets this done

      Many media posts have linked NYR as a 3rd party player to get Callahan … TBay upping what they’d have to give up by pic/prospect to NYR for taking Callahan

      I’ve posted before a solution (heavily bashed I might add) that does not include NYR.
      :

      Callahan is still owed $9.4M ($4.7 * 2 , all Sal ) but has cap hit of $5.8 each of 18/19 and 19/20

      My thoughts are that Ottw takes Callahan in deal plus of course Serg and likely Girardi (1 year $2.75 actual and $3.0 Cap)

      They can then flip Callahan while retaining 50%…New team gets him effectively for $2.35 cash for 2 years and $2.9 in Cap space each year

      …. that flip has to net at a min a 3rd rounder

      Ottw cares nothing re Cap space …. it’s all cash ….EK due $7.5 with a $6.5 Cap hit

      Ottw saves $7.5 but now has to pay Serg ($0.9); Call ($4.7 in takeback) ; and Girardi ($2.75)… approx. an extra $0.9M in cash

      They have gained Serg (very promising young D ) and services of (view as you like) Girardi for one year ; plus Min of third rounder

      …, Now , what does it take from TBay on top of giving up Serg. To make this work

      … I believe 1st (’20) ; and Katchouk or Cal Foote plus conditional *3rd (’19)

      * if TBay extends EK becomes 1st (’21)

      …. TBay has space and it works from their end and can bring Raddysh up (forward space opened up); signs EK to extension … and strong likliehood of Eastern Conf cup fav for next 3 years

      Ottw nets Serg; Foote/Kachouk; Girardi (1year) ; 3rd ; 1st ; and another 3rd that can become another 1st… loses EK (that they are as at now unlikely to extend) and pay out close to an extra $1M in cash next year

      …. IMO this would work

      Outside of my highly speculative ins and outs above; and greatly outside of my hopes of EK in the West … I think Stevie Y gets a deal done

  4. Accomplishments thus far and offensive stats between McD and Matthews really are not comparable. McD is WAY ahead of him and WAY more valuable to his team. Don’t get me wrong, Matthews is fantastic! But he hasn’t exactly put up McD type numbers! And McD has done it with a lesser supporting cast too! If the Leafs pay Matthews more than JT, IMO it’s a mistake.

    • Yeah but the media and fan hype for Leafs players drives up their cost. They have been hyping Mathews and Marner so hard they’ll both get seriously paid unless they decide to take a discount to stay.

    • Don’t forget the cap will have gone up a decent bit by the time he signs. Mathews potentially gets more than mcdavid… but likely gets right around the same.

      • How can Matthews make more than the best player on the planet??? Come on now… No way can that happen!

      • 1st. He ain’t that yet. Second. Simple economics. Even looking at my pens. Malkin made more than the best player on the planet for some time. It’s about when they sign the deal. Teams are paying for future performance. To use your straight comparison example… how could Mathews only make what Eichel is making?

    • Couldn’t agree more. McDavid and Crosby are at the top of the heap in regards to being the best players in the league. You can slot Matthews anywhere behind the likes of Kane, Ovechkin, McKinnon, Laine, Seguin, Hall, etc…Matthews is a fantastic player but to compare him to McDavid is not realistic.

  5. The analytics crowd talks a good game, but where is the proof makes better decisions that viewing the guy play? Where is the evidence that it even help make better decisions? I’ve never any. None, zero, zip. You are supposed to believe in it because 1) it worked in baseball. The usual argument is that you should take it on faith because it’s new, so it must be better. Everything new is always better. Anyone who has been around a while, knows that this is utter rubbish. So I ask you, where is the proof?

    I can hardly wait to see how Jack Johnson does. The analytics crowd have him as one of the worst defensemen in the NHL. If he plays well or even decently, the analytics types are going to look stupid and their credibility will take a nosedive. Of course, they will have some excuse. But they are way out on limb with him. The Pens like him despite analytics, which is interesting because they have their own analytics guru

    Let the games begin!

    • Wow, couldn’t make heads or tails of this.

    • Who is their guru? The only problem with the Jj contract was the term. Analytics and traditional assessment put this guy as reclamation project. Who gives a reclamation project 5 years? Two would have been plenty

  6. HH
    I can’t see Dorion only taking pics …. He’ll want a good young D, plus a 1st , plus a prospect …. at least

    The media has repeatedly indicated that a Dorion EK deal with Dall would include Heiskanen (sp?); VGK ….Theo; TBay …. Serg

    IMO Leafs don’t have a comparable young D prospect to offer up ; AND I just can’t see the $’s working in 19/20 ++ …. in addition IMO there is no way they are just looking at EK for one year

    I know Slick 62 mentioned Cgy …. and of course this would be a great boost to a team that made good moves recently … but who is the comparable young D (to Heisk, Theo, Serg) coming back?

    What has to be weighed in on the offer is likliehood of getting EK extended once aquired…

    I believe Dal, VGK, TBay remain the “real” contenders. The three teams are in locales with same taxes … so take home will be the same on identical offers. I don’t think any of the 3 would be shy in awarding a SB heavy contract.

    EK like any other player, wants to win the SC. I believe of the 3 the best chance is with TBay…. and he is friends and fellow countryman of Hedman
    TBay , on top of Serg has great prospects in Raddysh and Kachouk ; but technically doesn’t have a 1st in ’19 (to NYR unless they don’t win SC)… if they aquired EK IMO a fav for cup. Their issue lies in Cap space … and Callahan a must to move

    Dall has a first; has Heisk (greatly coveted but yet to play in NHL) but not as full a cupboard of prospects; and even with EK added, not a Cup Fav (less of a draw for EK to re-sign)

    VGK has a first; Theo has already played and played well; could take on BR contract; has many prospects and pics; more of a cup fav with EK than Dall IMO but nowhere near as much a cup fav as TBay
    IMO TBay and VGK more likely to get EK

    Further…. I think it’s the Callahan situation or the Melnyk insisting on BR moving with EK that will decide it

    I’m a Leafs/Pens fan so would like him in Dall or Vegas but my gut has an odd feeling that Stevie Y gets this done

    Many media posts have linked NYR as a 3rd party player to get Callahan … TBay upping what they’d have to give up by pic/prospect to NYR for taking Callahan

    I’ve posted before a solution (heavily bashed I might add) that does not include NYR.
    :

    Callahan is still owed $9.4M ($4.7 * 2 , all Sal ) but has cap hit of $5.8 each of 18/19 and 19/20

    My thoughts are that Ottw takes Callahan in deal plus of course Serg and likely Girardi (1 year $2.75 actual and $3.0 Cap)

    They can then flip Callahan while retaining 50%…New team gets him effectively for $2.35 cash for 2 years and $2.9 in Cap space each year
    …. that flip has to net at a min a 3rd rounder

    Ottw cares nothing re Cap space …. it’s all cash ….EK due $7.5 with a $6.5 Cap hit
    Ottw saves $7.5 but now has to pay Serg ($0.9); Call ($4.7 in takeback) ; and Girardi ($2.75)… approx. an extra $0.9M in cash

    They have gained Serg (very promising young D ) and services of (view as you like) Girardi for one year ; plus Min of third rounder
    …,

    Now , what does it take from TBay on top of giving up Serg?

    To make this work
    … I believe 1st (’20) ; and Katchouk or Cal Foote plus conditional *3rd (’19)

    * if TBay extends EK becomes 1st (’21)

    …. TBay has space and it works from their end and can bring Raddysh up (forward space opened up); signs EK to extension … and strong likliehood of Eastern Conf cup fav for next 3 years

    Ottw nets Serg; Foote/Kachouk; Girardi (1year) ; 3rd ; 1st ; and another 3rd that can become another 1st… loses EK (that they are as at now unlikely to extend) and pay out close to an extra $1M in cash next year

    …. IMO this would work

    Outside of my highly speculative ins and outs above; and greatly outside of my hopes of EK in the West … I think Stevie Y gets a deal done

    • Still can’t see Tampa. After this season they’ll already have 65.8million tied up on 12 players. If you swap Karlsson for Sergachev, you’ll probably be looking at about 75mil. for 12 players! Even if you move Callahan, you’ll still need to fill out half your roster for about 10-12mil? Vegas can probably make money work, but they’ll have to deal some of their good young players, and I’m not convinced they’d still be best team in West.

      • Calgary can offer Harmonic to replace EK at right D, Juuso Valimaki as promising left D, and either of Sam Bennett( if they believe he’s not a bust) or Jankowski….maybe add a pick? Calgary could resign EK and still have cap flexibility going forward.
        Neal-Moynihan-Goudreu
        Bennett-Backland-Lindholm
        Tkachuk-Ryan-Foo
        Czarnik-Frolik-Hathaway-Lazar
        Karlsson-Brodie
        Hanifan-Giordano
        Prout-Stone-Kulak

  7. Personally I believe if Erik Karlsson was going to be traded pre deadline then it would have been done at the draft. It is a lot easier for most teams to make a trade for him at the deadline as Ottawa is probably targeting good prospects first, and picks second. This will most likely result in more of a “bidding war” and give Ottawa a better shot at getting the ideal package they’re looking for. A lot of teams can afford EK at the deadline, that otherwise could not without a complicated 3 team deal. There is a definite chance I am wrong, and a Turris like trade comes out of left field, but I firmly believe a deal would be done by now if one was going to happen. It sure didn’t take long for Ottawa to ship out Hoffman when that news broke which suggests Ottawa planned on keeping Karlsson for at least the start of the season.

    Anyways, a potential trade candidate imo is Edmonton. A package of Draisaitl plus could be the starting point, a conditional pick if EK resigns in Edmonton and maybe a serviceable DMan?