NHL Rumor Mill – July 1, 2019
The NHL free-agent market opens today at 12:01 pm ET. Check out the latest on Artemi Panarin, Sergei Bobrovsky, Tyler Myers and more in today’s rumor mill.
UPDATE ON PANARIN
NEW YORK POST: Brett Cyrgalis believes Artemi Panarin is believed to be deciding between the Rangers, Islanders and Florida Panthers. It’s expected he’ll receive a seven-year deal north of $11 million annually. If the Isles fail to land Panarin, they could fall back on bringing back captain Anders Lee. The Isles could also be in need of a goaltender if they fail to land Sergei Bobrovsky as contract talks with Robin Lehner stalled.
SPORTSNET: Elliotte Friedman cites The Athletic’s Aaron Portzline reports the Columbus Blue Jackets made a monstrous, last-minute pitch to Panarin. The offer was said to be eight years at between $96 – $100 million. Friedman is skeptical, however, that Panarin will accept it, knowing that money was there from the Jackets all along.
Friedman also cited Colorado Hockey Now’s Adrian Dater saying the Colorado Avalanche pitched a six-year, $70-million offer to Panarin.
SPECTOR’S NOTE: The only reason Panarin might consider staying with the Jackets is they’re the only club that could offer him an eight-year deal. He apparently had until midnight ET to agree to it. Otherwise, they can only offer seven years if the agreement came today. We’ll find out soon enough what his decision was.
OTHER SIGNINGS LEAKED
SPECTOR’S NOTE: Follow this link to check out last night’s list of notable leaked contract signings.
FOX SPORTS MIDWEST’s Andy Strickland expects the Florida Panthers will sign Sergei Bobrovsky to a seven-year deal worth “around $10 million” annually.
TSN’s Frank Seravalli reports the Vancouver Canucks and defenseman Tyler Myers are closing in on a six-year, $30-million contract. Sportsnet’s Rick Dhaliwal expects the Canucks will also sign blueliner Jordie Benn and another defenseman today.
SPECTOR’S NOTE: That’s an annual average value of $6 million for Myers, well below the rumored range of $7-$8 million per season.
WHAT NEXT FOR THE CANADIENS
After trading away Andrew Shaw and Nicolas Deslauriers yesterday, the Montreal Canadiens now have over $13 million in salary-cap space. Elliotte Friedman speculates on possible targets for the Habs. He believes they’re in on Anders Lee, and noted they also had interest in Wayne Simmonds and Jake Gardiner. He also wondered if they had an interest in Nashville Predators center Kyle Turris. It’s believed they’ll sign Keith Kinkaid as a backup for Carey Price.
Friedman also wondered if they’ll go the offer sheet route. He pointed out player agent Gerry Johansson, who represents Brendan Gallagher and Carey Price, also represents Carolina’s Sebastian Aho.
SPECTOR’S NOTE: Habs fans won’t mind if they sign Lee. They probably won’t be upset if they ink Gardiner. Given Simmonds injury history, that might not go down so well. If they offer-sheet Aho, the Hurricanes will match it.
LATEST ON THE PENGUINS AND BLACKHAWKS
TRIBLIVE.COM: Jonathan Bombulie reports the Pittsburgh Penguins could dip a toe into the UFA pool. “By the time they re-sign restricted free agents Marcus Pettersson, Zach Aston-Reese and Teddy Blueger, they probably will have a little more than $2 million to work with.” That could leave them pursuing more affordable options like Valtteri Filppula or Pierre-Edouard Bellemare. If they pursue someone like Micheal Ferland or Patrick Maroon, they’ll have to shed salary.
THE ATHLETIC: Scott Powers reports the Chicago Blackhawks now have about $5-$6 million of salary-cap space after reacquiring Andrew Shaw yesterday. They could also consider a cost-effective depth move like signing Ryan Carpenter or Pierre-Edouard Bellemare.
UPDATES ON MAROON AND MRAZEK
THE ATHLETIC: Jeremy Rutherford cites a source claiming winger Patrick Maroon is unlikely to return with the St. Louis Blues. He took a hometown discount last season and could make more on multiple years on the open market.
NEWS OBSERVER.COM: Despite the Carolina Hurricanes acquiring James Reimer yesterday, Chip Alexander reports they’re still trying to sign Petr Mrazek.
Expect hometown boy Jason Spezza to sign a one-year contract with TOR today.
— Bob McKenzie (@TSNBobMcKenzie) July 1, 2019
An informed source tells me: “good chance” Donskoi signs with Avs. But there is STRONG competition for him though. Nothing over til it’s over. @ColHockeyNow
— Adrian Dater (@adater) July 1, 2019
Expect Luke Schenn to sign a one-year deal with #tblightning in neighbourhood of $700k.
— Frank Seravalli (@frank_seravalli) July 1, 2019
Sounds like Calvin Pickard is joining the #RedWings on a two-year deal. He’s expected to compete with Jonathan Bernier in training camp to back up Jimmy Howard.
— Frank Seravalli (@frank_seravalli) June 30, 2019