Sunday NHL Rumor Roundup – August 18, 2019

by | Aug 18, 2019 | Rumors | 36 comments

Updates on Patrik Laine and Rasmus Ristolainen in the Sunday NHL rumor roundup.


SPORTSNET: Sean Reynolds believes Patrik Laine’s recent remarks regarding his contract status serves as a reminder of the Winnipeg Jets’ vulnerability as a small-market club. The 21-year-old restricted free agent winger last week described contract talks as nonexistent, adding he didn’t know where he’d be playing this season and was prepared for anything.

Could Winnipeg Jets winger Patrik Laine receive an offer sheet? (Photo via NHL Images)

Reynolds points out the Jets hold the leverage and control where Laine plays. He also suggested the winger’s remarks could be an attempt to get contract negotiations moving forward. Nevertheless, Reynolds feels “time, money, and circumstance are all working against the Jets.”

Unlike teammate Kyle Connor, there’s no confirmation if Laine has been contacted by rival clubs hoping to sign him to an offer sheet. However, Reynolds suggests the young Finn’s comments indicate he “at the very least understands that he is prepared, if not open, to a hockey future outside of Winnipeg.”

SPECTOR’S NOTE: An offer sheet is always possible but the best opportunity for that was late June or early July when teams had more salary-cap space and willingness to spend it. I believe it would take an offer sheet worth over $9 million annually to tempt Laine.

Cap Friendly indicates only six teams have the cap space to make that pitch. Three of them (Colorado, Columbus, Tampa Bay) have RFA talent of their own (Mikko Rantanen, Zach Werenski, Brayden Point) to re-sign. That leaves the Minnesota Wild, Ottawa Senators, and Philadelphia Flyers.

The Wild is undergoing a management change and unlikely to go the offer-sheet route. The rebuilding Senators probably won’t interest Laine while the Flyers must re-sign Ivan Provorov and Travis Konecny.

If another club wants to offer-sheet Laine, they’ll have to shed salary or do some creative accounting. Regardless, it would be a pointless exercise. The Jets have over $17 million in salary-cap space and can match an offer sheet for Laine.


THE BUFFALO NEWS: Mike Harrington reports Sabres general manager Jason Botterill still plans on having Risto Ristolainen on his team when training camp opens next month. The 25-year-old defenseman raised eyebrows during a recent interview in Finland by implying it might be better if he were traded.

Botterill said he wasn’t disappointed or surprised by Ristolainen’s remarks. He continues to interact with the blueliner but is keeping those discussions private.

Ristolainen has three years remaining on his contract with an annual average value of $5.4 million. While the Sabres sit over $1 million above the $81.5-million salary cap, Harrington said they can find other ways to become cap compliant other than moving Ristolainen. He also noted the Sabres are overloaded on right defense and require depth at forward.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Botterill isn’t  exactly smacking down the Ristolainen trade speculation. He may be looking ahead at having the blueliner on the roster when training camp opens, but he’s also not dismissing the notion that the d-man could be traded before camp opens.

Ristolainen could be shopped for a top-six winger before training camp. However, I think Botterill won’t move unless he gets the right return. It could take until next summer to find it.


    • It’s the Toronto Sun. Please don’t take this as gospel.

      • The Toronto Sun didn’t commission the documentary – that was produced in the U.S. – they just reported on it and drew comparisons.

    • This is not just a problem in Seattle, it is common along the west coast where the mild winters, as opposed to our eastern neighbours, bring hordes of their addicted to our warmer climate. Players still sign with Detroit with it’s astronomical murder rate.

      If you think it’s bad in Seattle George check out California. Last I looked they didn’t mind signing there either

    • On this story on Seattle

      Seattle over the last 5 or do years has a bigger homeless problem due to big increase in housing costs.

      Seattle homeless are not people traveling there as homeless.

      Seattle climate is more friendlier to homeless. It doesn’t get super golf in winter where highs are around 50 and lows mid 30s

      A friend of mine told me their condo price has tripled from its recession low. This is outside the city where lower and middle class have bern priced out.

    • George O most cities have their issues. Winnipeg has an epidemic of Oxycontin, to the point where convenience stores get robbed mid day pharmacy stores putting on signs that they don’t stock it, just to reduce the chance of being held up by gun point or knife.
      Just stay out of them neighborhood and you’ll be ok.

    • There is sone truth in that article but there is also much hyperbole. Seattle has plenty of enclaves…there will be no livability problem for players.

    • Digital media hit job. Seattle has its challenges. So does Vancouver. So does Philadelphia. Etc. Nothing in this diatribe has anything to say that is relevant to whether a Seattle franchise would succeed.

  1. All these unsigned talented RFA studs are going to dictate how contracts are handed out moving forward.
    Bridge contracts will be for the unproven.
    Winnipeg is in a pickle.
    The way their D got hit I believe their window is just about closed.
    They remind me of Vancouver when their window closed after failing with their superstar roster.

    • I love your work jack. I got one of your movies hidden in the case for season one of murder she wrote for those weeks the wife is out of town.

  2. Thanks for that link. Had no idea Seattle was like that .Vancouver’s Downtown Eastside and the Whalley District of Surrey are similar and now even Granville Street has a lot of homeless people camped out on it streets.

    • Every major city has issues with homelessness, drugs and crime. Vancouvers Mayor Moonbeam Gregor Robertson vowed to resolve homelessness in Vancouver in 3 years…… 5 years ago. Now theres tent cities in the city parks, free needles and drugs for the junkies. Beautiful city but Mayor Moonbeam fell well short of cleaning up the issue. Did a wonderful job though of creating traffic congestion and chaos with his bike-lane policies.

      Seattle is a great city, stunning views, great food, culture and to die for stadiums right by the water. If I were a US citizen Id want to live there.

      Out of Seattle, Vancouver or Toronto Toronto is the least desireable city of the three. Ive lived in 2 of them and spent a ton of time in the third and Seattle is the best by far.

      • Violent crime has dropped by more than 50% in Seattle since the 80’s. Property crime has also dropped by more than 50%.
        The same is true overall in the USA. Obviously some exceptions. Detroit is down but still way above US average.
        Are there more homeless people? Yes, and it is growing. Will it cause a spike in crime? Maybe.
        Simple facts fellas, and the evidence is overwhelming.
        The root causes are complicated to solve, but at the same time, also pretty obvious.
        So many people talk about how dangerous it is now, but in reality today has less crime than at anytime in my entire life.
        I am 54.
        Scaring people and making them angry generates clicks and improves TV ratings.

      • Don’t know how we’ll make it without you, Ron, but somehow we’ll manage.

      • Did you move on your own or where you asked to leave :):):)

  3. Package Risto & Reinhart plus other players/picks to WPG for Laine and see if they bite???

    • I tried that trade for WPG on NHL19. The computer laughed at me.

  4. Flyers may have 17 million in cap space currently but with Provorov (6-7 mil) and Konecny (4-5 mil) to resign I dont see any way for them to offer sheet anybody let alone Laine at 9 million.
    Different story maybe if Fletcher hadnt pulled a Benning and grossly overpaid for Kevin Hayes.

    With the recent story that Hayes only signed in Philly because they overpaid for him he better hope he has a good season. Philly fans arent known for their patience and a poor showing by Hayes will bring the hail storm of boos from the stands.

    • Oh yeah, that’s a well-earned reputation of not suffering fools gladly. More should be like that.

      Bob Uecker, who once played for the Phillies, observed that “they’d boo a blind child on an Easter-egg hunt” and “on off days, they go to the airport and boo bad landings.”

      • Eagles fans pummeled Santa with snowballs as well….

      • Mario got the standing o after his return from cancer. They ain’t all bad.

      • Too bad Pittsburgh didn’t return the favor when Kasparitis knocked out Lindros.

      • Did he? I guess I lost that memory with ulfy and neeley and Cooke and savard. We’ve had our sh*tbags… but to my knowledge the pens are the only team to publicly criticize and address that issue with one of their players. Cooke was essentially banished and told, again publicly, to shape up or ship out. Name me another nhl team that has taken that stance.

  5. I’m still not getting why none of these RFA’s are signed. Until they are, as a mgr. you have no idea where you’re at bringing anyone else in. Flyers, Jet’s, Nuck’s, flames can’t claim someone off waivers, They’re (RFA’s)all still going to get pretty close to what they want.

    • Why wouldnt the Flyers, Jets or Canucks be able to make a waiver claim?

  6. Not trying to hijack the conversation….but….just got back from having Sunday breakfast with a daughter….kid 2 booths over had socks with Marner’s face on them and a Marner sweater .

    A hot Sunday morning in Ontario

    As some of you know,I am all for trading Marner. After seeing that,not so sure it will ever happen….

    Woe is me

  7. Patrick Laine says there no talk and doesn’t know where he’ll be playing next year and has nothing bad to say about Winnipeg. That’s it, nothing more.
    Let the media and some fans run with it, oh my what does it all mean? He is holding out, they don’t want him, the Jets are in a pickle, they’re going to trade him, an offer sheet is coming, blah blah blah.
    Could it be he doesn’t have a contract and until he gets one he doesn’t know where he is playing other then in the NHL. One comment left out was he said he’ll be playing in the NHL. Basically he is saying the Jets have my rights and they’ll decide where I’m playing. Nothing more nothing less.

    • So true tell that to leafsadvocted

  8. On Ristolsinen and zbuffalo.

    Buffalo is over the cap now, but thry can bury Sobotka snd an ELC, ltir Bogosian thrn ELC called back up. Mon isdue

    Risto isn’t bring shopped but bots will listen to offers.

    As the season progressed snd one of the RHD could be traded in the right deal. Montour an RFA in 20 coukd be asking too much and get moved instead.

    Buffalo has 4 UFA Dmen in Scandella, Nelson, Bogosian, and Hunwick. Those get traded first.

  9. Alexander Ovechkin had 100 goals last two seasons at age 32,33, 49 goals and 51 goals, can Toronto Media and stop saying Laine and Matthew’s are best goal scorers in history of league? I think Gretzky, super Mario, Brett Hull, Ovie and Mike Bossy have something to say about this subject. Matthew’s was 55 goals behind Gretzky’s record of 92 and NHL network said he had best chance to break it at start of year. With most scorers now washed up at age 32 it’s exciting that Ovechkin is still doing so well, only 2 player in history have scored 40 goals past age 34… “2”!

    • Good post, Matt, Ovechkin has had a great career and deserves all the credit in the world. His problem, until the Caps won, was the constant comparison to Crosby. Now they can bè seen as the best players of their time. Amazing what a Cup will do.

      • Ahem. Three to one. No comparison. Duh.

      • Chris, did I say they were equal? You forgot the golden goal at the Vancouver Olympics. Selective memory methinks.

      • I did forget that. Cause I couldn’t give two craps and a piss about the olympics. Who scored said goal?

  10. RFA negotiations are starting to look a lot like CBA negotiations. Wait until the start of a season, when both groups have their backs against the wall, then start the serious negotiating.

  11. So basically Laine is politely saying that he wants out of Winnipeg. Risto obviously wants out of Buffalo. Why not work out a trade between the two?

    To WPG: Risto + Cozens + Jokiharju
    To BUF: Laine