NHL Rumor Mill – June 7, 2019
Updates on Jeff Skinner and Jack Roslovic, possible trade destinations for Kyle Turris, plus the latest on the Flyers and Stars in today’s NHL rumor mill.
SKINNER AND SABRES CLOSE TO A DEAL?
TSN’s Bob McKenzie took to Twitter yesterday with an update on contract talks between the Buffalo Sabres and left wing Jeff Skinner. “A week later than perhaps I expected, but it sounds like the Jeff Skinner contract negotiations are down to crunch time,” writes McKenzie. “My sense is he’ll either get a deal done in the next day or two or head off to UFA. If it gets done, I’d presume it to be 8 years at around $9M AAV.”
SPECTOR’S NOTE: Both sides have expressed optimism over getting a deal done. Looks like we won’t have to wait much longer to find out if that optimism was justified.
LATEST FLYERS SPECULATION
NBC SPORTS PHILADELPHIA: Jordan Hall speculates Flyers general manager Chuck Fletcher might not be done in the off-season trade market. He recently acquired pending free agent forward Kevin Hayes from the Winnipeg Jets. Noting Fletcher’s desire to add a veteran defenseman, Hall suggests Winnipeg’s Jacob Trouba and Minnesota’s Jared Spurgeon as intriguing options.
Trouba, 25, is a restricted free agent with arbitration rights and a year away from UFA eligibility. The 29-year-old Spurgeon is also slated to become a UFA next summer. His salary-cap hit is just over $5 million for 2019-20 and he has a modified no-trade clause. While serving as Wild GM, Fletcher signed Spurgeon to his current contract.
Hall also noted Fletcher is willing to entertain offers for the Flyers’ first-round pick (11th overall) in the upcoming NHL Draft.
SPECTOR’S NOTE: Hall points out there’s no indication the Flyers are pursuing Trouba or Spurgeon. Including that first-round pick in a package offer for either guy, however, could prove enticing to their current respective clubs. I daresay the Jets and Wild would also want one of the Flyers’ good young defensemen as part of the return. Of the two, Trouba is the most likely to be available in the off-season trade market.
POTENTIAL DESTINATIONS FOR TURRIS
THE ATHLETIC: During a recent mailbag segment, Adam Vingan was asked which teams could be realistic destinations for Nashville Predators center Kyle Turris. The Preds require a scoring forward but have limited cap space for 2019-20.
Turris is coming off a disappointing, injury-shortened campaign. He’s signed through 2023-24 with an annual cap hit of $6 million). Vingan suggests the Columbus Blue Jackets, Vancouver Canucks, Buffalo Sabres, Detroit Red Wings and Ottawa Senators as possible options.
SPECTOR’S NOTE: All could use help at center and have the salary-cap space to absorb Turris’ annual average value. While he had a solid performance at this year’s World Championships, that might not be enough to entice one of those clubs to take on that full contract.
Vingan points out Predators GM David Poile has never retained salary in a trade before but might have to if he intends to move Turris. Otherwise, he could be forced to include a sweetener like a quality draft pick, a top prospect, or a promising youngster in the deal.
ROSLOVIC’S FORMER AGENT DENIES TRADE REQUEST REPORT
WINNIPEG SUN: Paul Friesen reports the former agent for Jets forward Jack Roslovic denied a report claiming his ex-client requested a trade at least once during this season. “Jack never once asked for a trade,” said Ken Robinson. He explained Roslovic was disappointed in his role earlier this season as a fourth-line center. Despite being recently fired by Roslovic, Robinson went on to praise his former client.
SPECTOR’S NOTE: Before this year’s trade deadline, there was a rumor claiming the Jets didn’t want to part with Roslovic in their pursuit of Kevin Hayes. That should be a good indicator that they remain high on the 22-year-old’s potential. He’s a restricted free agent coming off his entry-level contract. I doubt the Jets intend to move him.
POSSIBLE STARS BLUELINE TARGETS
SPORTSDAY: During a recent live chat, Matthew DeFranks was asked who he saw as potential free-agent targets to be the Dallas Stars’ fourth defenseman. He took into account the Stars’ salary-cap constraints and the potential of losing that defenseman in the 2021 expansion draft. DeFranks suggests Tampa Bay’s Anton Stralman and Dan Girardi, Vegas’s Deryk Engelland, or perhaps Winnipeg’s Tyler Myers.
SPECTOR’S NOTE: In other words, it’ll have to be an affordable veteran option signed to 2021.