NHL Rumor Mill – February 28, 2020
The latest on Alex Pietrangelo, Torey Krug, Josh Anderson and Joe Thornton in today’s NHL rumor mill.
WILL PIETRANGELO AND KRUG RE-SIGN WITH THEIR RESPECTIVE CLUBS?
THE ATHLETIC: Pierre LeBrun believes the respective contract situations of St. Louis Blues defenseman Alex Pietrangelo and Boston Bruins blueliner Torey Krug won’t be resolved one way or the other until the season is over. The Bruins’ limited salary-cap space makes it difficult to fit in a new contract for Krug unless they shed some salary in the off-season.
LeBrun expects whatever offers Pietrangelo and Krug receive from their respective teams will be less than what they can get on the open market on July 1. He thinks the Blues could offer Pietrangelo something comparable to the eight-year, $64-million contract John Carlson signed with the Washington Capitals. The Bruins, meanwhile, could be reluctant to pay Krug more than teammates David Pastrnak ($6.6 million AAV) and Patrice Bergeron ($6.875 million).
If Pietrangelo doesn’t re-sign with the Blues, LeBrun speculates the Florida Panthers and Toronto Maple Leafs could come calling.
SPECTOR’S NOTE: It’ll be interesting to see how things play out for Pietrangelo and Krug this summer. Krug has indicated a willingness to accept a hometown discount, while the Pietrangelo camp was rumored to be seeking $9 million annually.
WILL THE BLUE JACKETS TRADE ANDERSON THIS SUMMER?
TSN: Pierre LeBrun believes there’s a strong possibility the Columbus Blue Jackets trade Josh Anderson this summer. He’s a restricted free agent with arbitration rights this summer and a year away from UFA eligibility. LeBrun also thinks there’s been a difference of opinion between the Blue Jackets and the Anderson camp over how to treat a shoulder injury suffered in December that could sideline him for the rest of the season.
SPECTOR’S NOTE: There was plenty of speculation about Anderson leading up to the recent trade deadline. The 25-year-old power forward will draw lots of interest if the Jackets shop him this summer, provided he’s fully recovered from his shoulder injury. Recent reports indicate he could require surgery. If so, the length of his recovery period could adversely affect his trade value.
THORNTON HOPES TO RETURN WITH THE SHARKS
THE MERCURY NEWS: Curtis Pashelka reports Joe Thornton fully intends to return with the San Jose Sharks after this season. Sportsnet’s Elliotte Friedman recently speculated Thornton could sign with the Toronto Maple Leafs if he’s not sold on the Sharks bouncing back next season.
“It’s an iconic team for sure. But I’m a Shark. I’m a Shark. I’ve been privileged to play here and understand what it is to be a Shark. I’m trying to pass it on to the younger guys and how much pride we take out here playing in front of these fans. I’ve always said I’m a lifelong Shark and that I will make no apologies for that.”
SPECTOR’S NOTE: And if the Sharks want Thornton back, they’ll be happy to sign him to another one-year, bonus-laden deal.