NHL Rumor Mill – March 7, 2020
Does Cory Schneider still have a future with the Devils? Could Anthony Mantha’s contract talk with the Red Wings become complicated? Check out the latest in today’s NHL rumor mill.
DOES SCHNEIDER FIT INTO THE DEVILS’ PLANS?
NORTHJERSEY.COM: Abbey Mastracco wonders what the future holds for Cory Schneider. The 33-year-old veteran goaltender spent part of this season in the minors, but he seems to have regained his form since being recalled on Feb. 20. Mastracco believes whoever takes over as the Devils’ full-time general manager during the off-season could face a big decision regarding Schneider. He has two years remaining on his contract worth $6 million annually, which could prove difficult to move.
SPECTOR’S NOTE: Injuries have adversely affected Schneider’s play in recent years, resulting in the type of inconsistency that sent him to the minors this season to sort out. He’s played well since his latest recall, but Mastracco points out he also finished well last season only to struggle again in the fall. With Mackenzie Blackwood looking more comfortable in the starter’s job, interim GM Tom Fitzgerald or his replacement could try to trade Schneider or buy out the final two years of his contract.
Schneider has a full no-trade clause so he’ll have to sign off on any attempt to move him. While his $6 million annual salary is difficult to move, the Devils could offer to pick up part of it. A budget-conscious club looking to reach next season’s salary-cap minimum ($65 million?) could have some interest if the Devils include a draft pick or prospect.
With the Devils investing over $55 million in 13 players for 2020-21, Schneider’s cap hit shouldn’t hamper their efforts to re-sign key players and add others during the off-season. The next GM, be it Tom Fitzgerald or someone else, could decide it best to hang onto Schneider and see how things play out.
MANTHA’S CONTRACT TALKS WITH THE WINGS COULD GET COMPLICATED
THE DETROIT NEWS: Ted Kulfan reports Anthony Mantha expected his contract negotiations with the Red Wings this summer could get complicated. The 25-year-old winger will become a restricted free agent with arbitration rights this summer. While Mantha’s scoring abilities are obvious, he’s been hampered by frequent injuries, missing 28 games this season to a knee injury and a punctured lung.
Mantha is in line for a significant raise over his current $3.3-million annual average value. However, his injury history could affect what type of deal he gets. Mantha, meanwhile, insists he wants to be in Detroit for the long term.
SPECTOR’S NOTE: Mantha’s situation could be worth watching over the summer. If things get complicated, it could spark some trade speculation.