NHL Rumor Mill – April 30, 2020

by | Apr 30, 2020 | Rumors | 42 comments

Check out recent speculation on the Bruins, Golden Knights, and Hurricanes in today’s NHL rumor mill.


THE ATHLETIC (subscription required): Joe McDonald believes Torey Krug should be among the Boston Bruins’ untouchables, but the 29-year-old defenseman unrestricted free agent status at season’s end creates uncertainty over his future in Boston. Krug expressed his desire to remain a Bruin, but McDonald believes he’ll have to accept a hometown discount. Krug recently said there have been no contract discussions because nobody knows what the financial implications will be for the league.

McDonald also believes pending UFAs Jaroslav Halak and Kevan Miller could be on the move. John Moore‘s spot on the blueline is up in the air because of the Bruins’ growing blueline depth. UFA center Joakim Nordstrom could also be a goner.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Krug’s future with the Bruins will remain a hot topic in the rumor mill until the NHL and NHLPA work out next season’s salary cap. That hometown discount could be around $6.5 million annually, but Krug would get more on the open market. That, of course, is assuming the cap remains at $81.5 million.

Could the Vegas Golden Knights try to re-sign Robin Lehner? (Photo via NHL Images)

This year’s UFA class could find it difficult getting hefty pay raises in the off-season. Nevertheless, clubs with plenty of salary-cap space could be willing to pay big bucks for a top free agent like Krug.


NBC SPORTS: James O’Brien recently mused over the plight of the Vegas Golden Knights’ goaltending. They acquired Robin Lehner at the trade deadline, prompting O’Brien to wonder if they could try to keep him following this season. “Doing so would require some juggling, possibly including trying to convince MAF (Marc-Andre Fleury) to accept a trade … but it’s something the Golden Knights should at least consider.”

SPECTOR’S NOTE: O’Brien’s not the first pundit to speculate about the Golden Knights re-signing Lehner and shopping Fleury. If that scenario isn’t possible, they could dip into the UFA market for a more affordable, short-term backup option for Fleury. Halak, Anton Khudobin, Thomas Greiss, and Cam Talbot are among those potentially available.


THE ATHLETIC (subscription required): Sara Civian speculates the Carolina Hurricanes could part ways with recently-acquired defenseman Sami Vatanen. Their acquisition of Brady Skjei could mean Joel Edmundson won’t be back, but she doesn’t rule out the Canes re-signing blueliner Trevor van Riemsdyk for the right price.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Vatanen was meant to be a rental player with Dougie Hamilton and Brett Pesce sidelined in late-February. I doubt he’s part of their plans beyond this season. I don’t see Edmundson returning unless he accepts less money on a short-term deal or van Riemsdyk tests the market.


  1. As a Devil’s fan I really liked Sami, but he was always hurt. He got hurt at the deadline and Fitz still somehow traded him, In retrospect that was incredible lucky we got anything for him. I wish Sami nothing but the best and good health going forward. And feel sorry for whoever signs him and expects top 4 minutes for a season.

  2. I think most (all?) UFA’s “expected” / “projected” next contracts ($’s and perhaps term) will be less than they had expected/projected/hoped they might be when they were
    contemplating (discussing with agent) them in Jan

    It is what it is

    An aside—— still would live UFA Soucy to be signed by Pens or Leafs…. contract will be reasonable and I believe he will perform above cost/Cap

    • “live” sb “love”

      Fat fingers; weak eyes; on iPhone ☹️

  3. Don’t know if he burned too many bridges with his negotiation/arbitration, but I would LOVE having Edmundson back on the Blues for a short term, cheap deal. He could take over for the oft-injured Gunnarsson. I know the $$s would be tough to find.

    • Hi Iowa Boy

      Barring the reintroduction of the compliance buyout; Blues getting Petro (top priority IMHO) AND Edmunson ….. very low probability

  4. Edmundson should be a reasonable sign and a solid bottom pairing . Leafs-Habs-Canucks

    • Hi SilverSeven

      I like Edmunson; I think there would be quite a few teams interested at the right price

  5. Is Chris Tanev a possibility for the Leafs?

    • Hi BCLeafsFan

      Love to have him; I’m sure same sentiments by Leafs; but just not viable IMHO due to Cap hit and Cap space (lack thereof)

      Would love Chris to join his bro as well

      • I’m sure same sentiments by the Leafs? What do you know other than half the fandom are split on him.

        PS No to your dream of trading WW. No matter what, teams do not trade players like him. Do you think Boston would trade pasta if they were in a similar bind as the Leafs?

      • Hi Ron

        I didn’t realize there were widely viewed concerns in Leafland re Tanev

        Pretty well all my circle of friends (in our 50’s) and my kids friends (mid/late 20’s) are pro on him…. small sample size agreed; but Ur right ; I was misguidedly/inaccurately opining in generality for all Leafs re CT… apologies

        Re WW…. have never stated it is Leafs position on him; but I stick with my firm belief that it is Leafs best move (if it can happen) in the hopes of a cup….

        Rationale…. I truly believe Leafs cup window is ‘21 through ‘24 and just can’t fathom a Cup in that time with 1/2 the Cap spent on 4 forwards….

        JT in control of where he is and will be; and I just can’t see Leafs flipping AM (if at all) before the end of the 22/23 season

        Leaving MM & WW

        Both valuable assets, no ifs ands or buts; and no challenge at all that WW (now) to his cap hit is Very likeable

        However…. the market for MM at his Cap…. that is teams wanting him; having space for nigh $11 M in Cap ; and willing to give up a package that Leafs want/need and do it with a net Cap space coming back to the Leafs; is very very small

        On the other hand …. after 1/7; WW only owed $2.5 M for 20/21 and basically a cash AAV outlay of about $5M per for balance of contract …. for his numbers….. wow….the suitors would me many many in numbers and the return (hopefully to be a top 3 D ; young ; with term; AND an asset; AND Cap space) extremely favourable

        Again this is not a situation of trade WW vs trade MM for the sake of argument….

        to me , it (trading one of them) is the only out (of Cap hell) and in terms of getting to the promised land; and to me the best trade option (most suitors/best return ) is via moving WW

        Developing the current D internally of course is a more strategic plan; but to me; not in time within current window

        I acknowledge that this is contrary to your stance (and a bunch of other Leaf fans); but I do believe in; and firmly stand by; my convictions on this.

        I am however, readily open to any other viable option(s) that brings the chalice to the 6.

        GO LEAFS GO

      • Can’t see a fit pengy. Pens too 4 is set. Tanev doesn’t displace any of them. He will be too expensive to sign for a bottom pair role.

      • Hi Chrisms

        Due to expected Cap hit the realistic fit to get the two brothers together isn’t happening; noted

        Outside of Cap ….. I’d absolutely love it

        Seems Shultz unlikely to be back)

        Would really like to see Pens 20/21 D:



        *Petrovic/Soucy (both UFAs)

        * Petrovic can (has and does) play wing (got a trey against Leafs this year!)

        Riikola and DeMelo (also UFA) as 7th/8th or 6th/7th if Petrovic bumps up to wing in any games

        🤞🙏🤞🙏 for the bandied about CBO (nudge nudge wink wink ….#3 😁😊😁😊)

        Chad to WBS or moved if possible

  6. I’ve made my opinion on Krug several times and it doesn’t change today.

    If Krug walks and Rask and Krejci contracts up the following season; I dont see either one getting the same $$$ or term as before, this will have the Bruins in a good cap situation with only McAvoy demanding big dollars coming up.

  7. Caper what I’ve seen so far I don’t believe Charlie deserves big money now don’t get me wrong I love the kid he plays in every situation. He is not elite he is way above average and maybe over rest of this year and next he takes it to a new level time will tell. Carlo is key for me he plays big and strong Boston needs him bad. Krug I’m ok with either way as long as contract is a discount ,Boston has plenty of options.

    • One fully agree, love Carlo but wont get big dollars unless offense improves.

      Curious what do you think happen at the expansion draft? Protect 3 d only?

      McAvoy, Carlo and Krug if resigned, leaving Grizz, Lauzon, Clifton and Moore unprotected? Good bye Lauzon either way. Unless he doesn’t need to be protected.

    • Why would baseball in Boston have an asterisk? Did I miss something?

      • Ya the Boston red Sox cheated

      • Man. So it’s in all sports up there. Did the Celtics ever cheat?

      • The league hasn’t released he findings yet Chrisms, but ya Cora who managed the Astros in 17 managed the Red Sox and was using video replay in the clubhouse to figure out/steal signs and then relaying them to the guys on base.
        Not as bad as the Atros IMO, but same guy same basic premise.
        Go Jays.

    • Obe, can I ask why you don’t believe in McAvoy? I agree he is somewhat unproven, however he is a plus player who plays a lot of critical PK and end of game minutes, while not really playing any PP other then secondary minutes.

      Right now I kind of compare him to John Carlson who was also averaged about .5 points per game the first 4/5 years of his NHL career and is now a complete stud on D. Will McAvoy score as much as Carlson, likely not but he is capable of more points and I think he is getting better. IMO he should be the guy that takes over for Krug.

      And Carlo is absolutely a keeper for me along with Lauzon

      • That sums up my opinion as well Greatgonzo. We won’t know if McAvoy can bring the offence until he gets first PP minutes and gets played in more offensive situations vs the defensive match ups he gets now. His focus has been solidifying his defensive game. Consistent 50 pt guy playing 24-25 minutes a night possibly?
        Future captain if he keeps progressing IMO.

      • I like him just don’t see him as a top tier D man I watch most all Bruin games and when pressured hard he gives puck away lots of turnovers. I think he is a great kid skates well hits harder than a bull his offense is ok but he is not in my opinion elite. Chrisim so you know everyone cheats just some don’t get caught.

      • Thing is obe… Boston keeps getting caught.

        I’m not sure what that says about Boston sports teams…

  8. Edmunson would be a great add for the Leafs

  9. Agree Obe–Mac has another level to reach. Has to be more consistent defensively which I think will come in time. Maybe trade Moore back to Devils clear some space

  10. MAF going where? He is face of franchise and a reliable goalie. Robin is talented and solid but can you count on him to carry the load? Isles/Sabres and Hawks didnt think so. Why do we think he is ready to do so now in Vegas??

  11. What about the Knights trading Fleury to the Habs to back up Price until Primeau is ready? I would prefer Khudo but it would sell a few more tickets and we all know that’s all that Molson cares about.

    • Price has 6 years left on his deal at 10.5 per, Fleury has 2 more at 7 per? You want Montreal to have 17.5 million locked up to ensure their backup goaltender matured and to sell a few tickets?

      • Johnny –Fleury isnt sitting behind Price. He’s a number 1 goalie, he wins games. No way you would tie that much money up having 2 top level goalies.

      • Didn’t realize that Fleury is still signed for 2 more years. Thought he was a UFA or had 1 year left. You’re right Nyr4life, 1 brutal contract at that position is already bad enough.

      • crrob, you’re correct sir. See my response to Ny4kife. But I don’t consider Fleury a #1 goalie anymore.

  12. Not seen discussed here the importance of the draft for signings and trades, which of course is an important factor. I believe the draft will have to occur before July 01 UFA date.

    There is enough turbidity right now without changing the order of the draft and July 01.

    • Hi LJ

      Excellent point

      However, it seems the UFA date of 1/7 will move IF there is resumption and completion of season ….

      Because reg season continuing into July w/o moving UFA date ; would have teams dropping ALL UFAs because they (UFAs) would NOT be under contract

      For example …. if UFA date NOT moved ; AND season finished ; then the top team in the NHL is playing sans….

      Big Z

      …. and that’s not going to happen

      IF they resume reg season and playoffs; to me, draft must go AFTER SC awarded

      A draft prior to a resumption (if happening) leads to unfair/biased draft picks (how is lottery weighted etc; and although highly highly unlikely; teams could win lottery and have a surge; get into playoffs; and continue surge and win Cup!!!

      • Yes, Pengy. A lot of moving parts, huh.

      • Hi LJ


  13. Nobody is talking about this, but why don’t Vegas sign Lehner and expose one of the 2 goalies in the expansion draft the following season?


    • Hey Mario! Does jimmy Paek need a break from the lawn care? I know some people in need of work. They will travel to sewickly if needed. Dm me pal!

  14. Hard to speculate on trades and free agent signings without knowing if there will be comp. buyouts.

    • Doesn’t sound like there will be compliance buyouts, where don’t want them as just more money will have to be spent

      • Owners* not where

  15. Chrisms maybe they are not good at cheating that’s why they get caught all I know is the Bruins didn’t have to cheat to be in first place. Bobby Orr didn’t cheat to win all his trophies and Pasta never cheated to score his 48 goals so far this year. One of my favorite sports to watch is NASCAR and I know they all cheat or bend the rules and I love it.