NHL Rumor Mill – May 16, 2020
Check out recent speculation on the Red Wings, Coyotes, and Canucks in today’s NHL rumor mill.
SUGGESTED FREE-AGENT TARGETS FOR THE RED WINGS
MLIVE.COM: Ansar Khan recently listed some possible goaltending and blueline free-agent targets for the Detroit Red Wings. He doesn’t expect they’ll have a shot at top-tier options like St. Louis’ Alex Pietrangelo, Washington’s Braden Holtby, Boston’s Torey Krug, or Vegas’ Robin Lehner.
The goalie targets could include Calgary’s Cam Talbot, the New York Islanders’ Thomas Greiss, or San Jose’s Aaron Dell. Defense choices could include someone like Calgary’s TJ Brodie, Travis Hamonic, or Erik Gustafsson.
DETROIT FREE PRESS: Helene St. James suggested several affordable short-term free-agent forward options. They include Colorado’s Vladislav Namestnikov, Florida’s Evgenii Dadonov, and the New York Rangers’ Jesper Fast.
SPECTOR’S HOCKEY. According to Cap Friendly, the Wings have over $46.2 million invested in 11 players. They have the cap room to pursue a big-name free agent.
These reports suggest, however, general manager Steve Yzerman could prefer cost-effective secondary talent to augment his roster as it transitions toward younger players. Nevertheless, the Wings will have to overpay a bit to entice second-tier players to join their rebuilding club.
LATEST ON THE COYOTES AND CANUCKS
THE ATHLETIC (subscription required): In a recent mailbag segment, Craig Morgan addressed a recent rumor suggesting former Edmonton Oilers general manager Peter Chiarelli might be hired by the Arizona Coyotes for a senior management role. “I don’t think Chiarelli will be joining the organization,” he said.
Morgan shed no light on the status of free agent Taylor Hall, saying he had no gut feeling or best guess about the winger’s status. Regarding the conditional draft picks involved in the trade that brought Hall to the Coyotes, Morgan reported GM John Chayka indicated they don’t have anything to discuss yet because the season remains paused. Chayka also indicated he has multiple plans for dealing with his club’s limited salary-cap space for 2020-21.
SPECTOR’S NOTE: The Coyotes have almost $80 million invested in 16 players next season. They must shed salary to re-sign or replace Hall and fellow UFAs Brad Richardson and Carl Soderberg, as well as restricted free agents like Christian Fischer and Vinnie Hinostroza.
TSN: Sven Baertschi faces an uncertain future with the Vancouver Canucks. The 27-year-old winger spent most of this season with their AHL affiliate in Utica while GM Jim Benning attempted to trade him. Baertschi is hopeful he’ll be shipped to another NHL club in the off-season. “I don’t want to be back in the minors,” he said.
Bartschi is a year away from UFA status and carries an annual average value of $3.36 million. He missed most of last season to concussion and felt he wasn’t considered part of the Canucks’ future plans. “I don’t think Vancouver expected me to come back and play,” Baertschi explained. “That’s my personal opinion.”
SPECTOR’S NOTE: Baertschi showed 20-goal potential but injuries hampered his performance. The Canucks might not be able to move him unless they pick up part of his annual cap hit, or package him with another asset, or take back a contract of equal value.