NHL Rumor Mill – October 30, 2020
Updates on Mike Hoffman and Ilya Kovalchuk plus the latest on the Flames in today’s NHL rumor mill.
TSN: Pierre LeBrun reports free-agent winger Mike Hoffman and his camp intend to remain patient in search of a suitable deal. They could be keeping an eye on several clubs, such as the Boston Bruins, Edmonton Oilers and St. Louis Blues that could have long-term injury situations freeing up potential cap space. If a team like his former club, the Florida Panthers, or the Nashville Predators step up and make better offers then perhaps a deal can be made.
SPECTOR’S NOTE: Hoffman is reportedly willing to accept a one-year deal worth $6 million. The Bruins could have Brad Marchand and/or David Pastrnak on LTIR to start the season. Oilers defenseman Oscar Klefbom could be gone for the season with a shoulder injury, while the Blues’ Vladimir Taransenko could be out for months following yet another shoulder surgery.
LeBrun noted the Predators have “called a bunch” about Hoffman. They have $12.9 million in cap space if they’re willing to spend toward the ceiling with Luke Kunin left to re-sign. Maybe they circle back with an offer to Hoffman’s liking.
THE SCORE: cited LeBrun reporting earlier this week Ilya Kovalchuk is also staying patient as he searches for a new NHL home. With his career winding down, the 37-year-old winger is hoping to join a contender.
NBC SPORTS: James O’Brien listed the Montreal Canadiens, Nashville Predators, Dallas Stars, New York Islanders, Florida Panthers and Carolina Hurricanes as possible free-agent destinations for Kovalchuk.
SPECTOR’S NOTE: There was talk earlier this year of the Canadiens bringing back Kovalchuk but their recent acquisitions of Josh Anderson and Tyler Toffoli suggest otherwise. The Predators might consider it if they lose out on Mike Hoffman but they probably prefer younger options.
I think the Stars intend to bring back Corey Perry. The Islanders’ limited cap space will be used to re-sign Mathew Barzal and Ryan Pulock.
The Panthers or Hurricanes could consider Kovalchuk as a cost-effective option if they feel the need to add depth on the wing. Like the Predators, however, I suspect their priority would be on finding younger alternatives.
TSN: Darren Dreger reports Calgary Flames general manager Brad Treliving is in the market for an experienced right-side defenseman. He expects Treliving will address that need via trade but doesn’t rule out another dip into the free-agent market.
SPECTOR’S NOTE: The Flames have just over $1 million remaining in cap space with defenseman Oliver Kylington to re-sign. Dreger didn’t indicate what Treliving would offer up as trade bait. Unless Kylington is getting moved, dipping into the UFA market again seems unlikely.