NHL Rumor Mill – June 18, 2021

by | Jun 18, 2021 | Rumors | 32 comments

The latest Leafs speculation plus updates on Dougie Hamilton and Seth Jones in today’s NHL rumor mill.


THE ATHLETIC: James Mirtle no longer feels optimistic about the Toronto Maple Leafs’ chances of re-signing Zach Hyman. The 29-year-old left-winger is slated to become an unrestricted free agent on July 28

Toronto Maple Leafs winger Zach Hyman (NHL Images).

Multiple sources claim they don’t believe there have been any substantial contract discussions between the Leafs and the Hyman camp for some time. Talk around the league is the winger could command up to $6 million annually on a long-term deal, with the Montreal Canadiens’ Josh Anderson (seven years, $38.5 million) cited as a comparable.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: We can’t rule out the possibility of the Leafs re-signing Hyman for perhaps a bit of a hometown discount. He could find it difficult to land a big-money deal with the salary cap remaining around $81.5 million. Nevertheless, many NHL general managers tend to succumb to auction fever in the free-agent market. Someone could tempt Hyman away from the Leafs with a significant offer.

OTTAWA SUN: Joel Colomby recently expressed the hope that Hyman would accept a hometown discount to stay with the Leafs and give them that essential grit they need on their top line. With Nick Foligno expected to return to the Columbus Blue Jackets, Colomby believes they must find someone to replace him. “Is that Evander Kane’s name we’re hearing in trade rumors?”, he asked.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: To my knowledge, Colomby’s the only one hearing Kane’s name in trade rumors. The 29-year-old winger was their most productive player, finishing the season with a team-leading 22 goals and 49 points in 56 games.

Things have been rather quiet for the San Jose Sharks in recent weeks. I believe they have no intention of moving Kane. If they were, his bankruptcy proceedings could dampen his value. That’s assuming the Leafs are among the three teams on his list of preferred trade destinations. If that wasn’t a showstopper, his $7 million annual cap hit through 2024-25 probably would be.


THE ATHLETIC: Mark Lazerus and Scott Powers cited a source claiming the Chicago Blackhawks are going to explore adding either Dougie Hamilton or Seth Jones to their defense corps this summer. However, they don’t intend to leverage their future to add either blueliner.

The Blackhawks won’t be interested should Hamilton seek a deal comparable to the $8.8 million annually on a seven-year deal Alex Pietrangelo signed last October with the Vegas Golden Knights. They would, however, consider discussions for a lower cap number.

As for Jones, it depends on the Columbus Blue Jackets’ asking price. One league source believes it could be a first-round pick, a second-rounder, and a high-quality prospect. Another felt Kirby Dach would have to be part of any offer from the Blackhawks.

COLORADO HOCKEY NOW: Adrian Dater believes the Avalanche should pursue Jones if he wants to come to Colorado. He speculates the cost could be either Nazem Kadri, Tyson Jost or JT Compher, a first-round pick and a prospect such as Connor Timmins or Justin Barron. He wouldn’t give up Bo Byram though the Blue Jackets are sure to ask for him.

OTTAWA SUN: Joel Colomby reported there are rumors of the Maple Leafs having talks with the Blue Jackets about Jones. He believes the Leafs could fit him within their well-publicized salary-cap constraints by having the Jacket retain salary on the final year of his contract.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: With Brent Seabrook and Andrew Shaw on permanent long-term injury reserve status, the Blackhawks will have sufficient cap space to pursue a top-two defenseman like Hamilton or Jones. Whether they can pull it off remains to be seen. Jones could end up costing them more in terms of a new contract plus the sizable return to the Blue Jackets. With Hamilton, it’s just the contract to be sorted out.

It’ll be interesting to see what Avalanche GM Joe Sakic has in store for his club following their disappointing playoff exit. He’s got to re-sign or replace pending UFAs like Philipp Grubauer and Gabriel Landeskog, plus Cale Makar is due a hefty raise coming off his entry-level deal. Sakic will have to shed salary if he pursues Jones.

The question of return will also be an issue for the Leafs. They don’t have a first-round pick in this year’s draft to include in a trade offer. There’s also the long-term cost of Jones’ next contract, which could exceed $8 million annually starting in 2022-23. Cap Friendly indicates the Leafs have over $51 million tied up in just six players for ’22-’23. They can’t take on Jones without shedding one of those contracts.


  1. Pietrangelo was a captain currently wearing an A, won a Stanley, perennial all star and team Canada. Will likely be on the Olympic team. Hamilton ?? Traded 3 times . That’s all I got.
    Worth the same money in whose world .

    • Traded from Boston to Calgary, then Calgary to Carolina.

      Where is the third trade?

      Not to mention, he requested a trade out of Boston.

      • Ok gong onto his third team then. Asked out of Boston kicked out of Calgary. The point is Dougie Houser is not worth Pietrangelo money.
        If someone pony’s up, they will regret that decision. Goes the same for Hyman at $6m. Only in Toronto. Is Marner worth more than Point ?

    • And yet Doug Armstrong had an offero the table for Hamilton when he waswith Calgary and Steen useduces his NTC which ended that discussion.

    • I agree especially since Hamilton hasnt been as good in the playoffs, I would say 7×7,5 would be fair value

  2. No way Evander Kane comes to Toronto. Not at $7m. for the next 4 years. If Hyman, whom they can retain without trading assets, may be too expensive for them, how could they fit in Kane? Colomby really ought to ignore those voices in his head.

  3. Perhaps Kerfoot to SJ for Kane

    gives SJ cap space and Kane is an upgrade for TML. Letting Hyman walk replaced by Kane and use Hyman $ to replace bottom 6 fillers.

    • Kerfoot even up for Evander Kane??? Pass the pipe over here please, I’ll take a hit …

      This could possibly be the most insane proposal I have ever read on this forum … delusional


      • never said straight up. i merely suggested to offer those as players in the trade. details of other players picks etc are up to those who wish to consider. Take a breather buddy.

    • I honestly think Kerfoot is overvalued, below average 3rd line center

      • Of course Kerfoot is over valued. He plays in TO, where even Matthews can make 2-3 million more than guys who have won the cup a couple times.

    • Is there a casino in toroNto for KANE?Buyer beware on Hanilton.He s 6 ft 6 but plays 5ft 6.Get the picture.

  4. Columbus should pursue Hamilton. Would eliminate need for Jones replacement in any trade, freeing them to pursue a center. Carolina must have a base that they have set and told Hamilton to see if he can do better. Any trades for Jones would still be contingent on him wanting to sign extension. Still say Dallas and Philly could be top 2, with Edmonton possible if they keep his brother long term too

    • Slick, some pretty connected folks here in CBus share there is considerable buzz about LA, CHI, PHI, and COL being in on Jones…really not sure how accurate it is. Interestingly, some of those same folks suggest Laine is not going to be on CBJ’s opening night roster either (can’t say I understand why). However, if it’s a full on rebuild moving Jones, Laine, & Elvis or Korpi may get you the C & D prospects and picks necessary to kick start the process.

    • Hamilton to Columbus actually sounds like a good idea, only money and Hamilton might actually like Columbus with the smaller market suiting him

  5. Anyone that insists you call him Dougie and can’t fit into a locker room is not going to demand big bucks. Can he play yup but not mean enough great skater and has good offensive instincts but not best defender. Have no idea where he lands this time some team probably will over pay and sign his brother Fredie to play alongside Dougie lol.

  6. Good luck to the Leafs re-signing Hyman. It will take very special circumstances. Hyman may feel he will have more points playing with Marner and Matthews than he would elsewhere. But he will also realize that signing him even at a discount means that the cap problems the Leafs have will be worse, not better, and will be so for several years to come.

    And if he wants to see what taking home town discounts does for the chance to win the Cup, he should look to Boston where the Bs have tried that tactic. Tampa does it well but that is because the take home pay is better due to the tax advantage in Florida.

    • LJ, spot on. One thing to note. Yes TB gets players to sign for less due to taxes, but they also have to include no trade clauses to make it work. That is the flip side, see exhibit A Johnson.

      • Players also take a discount because they have a good team and Cooper has a good reputation

    • I am Trying to wrap my head around how keeping ufas at less than market prices negatively impacts a teams cup chances.

      • Chrisms, a sharp guy like you not understanding that Hyman taking a home town discount is still going to be an increase in his current salary at a time of a frozen cap?? Surely you can take it from there ….

      • You pointed to Boston. A team who the majority of people I have seen think have great contracts for their players.

        Seemed like an odd way way to make a point.

  7. Curious. When Rangers signed Gallant as coach, I checked out rosters for teams he coached in Fl and Vegas, thinking there could be FA’s he’d be interested in bringing in. Noticed that Hyman was drafted by Fl but his rights were traded to Toronto after 4 years at Michigan. Did he force that trade by not signing in Fl? Otherwise, that was a steal as Fl ended up with Greg McKegg

    • Slick

      I believe you’re right. Hyman didn’t want to sign in FLA and they were about to lose Hyman’s rights so he was traded.

      I think it was Dubas’ first trade as Leafs GM?

      Hyman is a valuable player for the Leafs. I’m not sure he’s a $5-6M a year player though? There are other players available in this years FA pool that could play Hyman’s role on the Leafs for $3-4M…Coleman or Goodrow from TB come to mind

      • With Kreider at 6.5 on the third line and a NMC NYR cannot afford Hyman especially for 5m plus.

        Ya don’t pay 5m plus for grit. You pay 5m for scoring and clutch performance.

  8. Nominees are out for the Jim Gregory (best GM) and the Adams (coach of the year) awards and I dont see Kyle Dubas or Sheldon Keefe named anywhere.

    Probably fixed….. lol

  9. Not enough $$ to sign Hyman @ 6 mil? but trade for E. Kane. (7 mil & give up assets)? Are these guys stupid? Why would anyone read whatever this guy writes. (Colomby)

  10. As for Dougie Hamilton, Ron Francis has history with Hamilton in Carolina & Seattle is allowed talk to UFAs prior to the expansion, could there be a fit there. Surely the Kraken have the $$$ to sign Hamilton.

    Also looking at Freddie Anderson, same deal there.

    Then looking at Tampa’s D, I suspect there three D-men protected will be Hedman, Sergachev & Cernak. That would leave Ryan McDonagh available to the Kraken.

    Looking at from the Vegas draft view, what a solid base Francis could start on solid base for back end with in a strong #1 D pairing, a big, in size #1 goaltender & McDonagh could easily serve as the franchises first captain.

    They could easily round out their D with the likes of some like Toews from the Avs, Soucy from the Wild, Stanley from the Jets & Ekholm from the Preds.

    Then to solidify their center ice they could also target any of one Nugent-Hopkins, Danault or Wenneberg or a combination of any two.

    Rounding out the wingers will be a much easier task with what will be available.

  11. Evander Kane can take down the best team no matter how many goals or assists he has – he’s just bad news. Why the Toronto Maple Leafs would want a player like this is beyond me.