NHL Rumor Mill – June 5, 2021

by | Jun 5, 2021 | Rumors | 16 comments

Could the Oilers target a Lightning winger in this summer’s trade market? Is this season the last for Matt Dumba and Zach Parise with the Wild? Check out the latest in today’s NHL rumor mill.


EDMONTON JOURNAL: David Staples believes the Oilers’ priority should be landing a veteran winger who’ll mesh well with center Connor McDavid. That’ll take on greater importance if Ryan Nugent-Hopkins departs via free agency next month.

The Tampa Bay Lightning would be an obvious place to start because of their limited cap space and forwards Blake Coleman and Barclay Goodrow are among their pending unrestricted free agents.

Could the Edmonton Oilers have interest in a Tampa Bay Lightning winger such as Alex Killorn? (NHL Images)

They could attempt to shed salary by trading a veteran forward at a bargain price. Alex Killorn, Ondrej Palat or Yanni Gourde could become a trade candidate. Staples doubts Killorn will be available given his strong performance in this year’s playoffs.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: With over $22 million in cap space (as per Cap Friendly), Oilers general manager Ken Holland should have sufficient cap room to acquire a top-six winger via trade or free agency even if he re-signs Nugent-Hopkins, Mike Smith and Adam Larsson. He could have more if he buys out James Neal and/or Mikko Koskinen and finds a trade partner to take Zack Kassian off his hands. Holland could be willing to talk trade with the Lightning depending on who they’re trying to offload this summer.

Something’s gotta give in Tampa Bay this summer. They could, as Staples suggested, buy out Tyler Johnson or hope the Seattle Kraken select him in the expansion draft. Even then, they could still trade another forward to get some additional wiggle room under the cap. That could force them to part with Palat, Gourde or Killorn.

Gourde’s full no-trade makes him the least likely of that trio to be moved. Killorn has a 16-team no-trade clause. Palat’s full no-trade becomes a modified no-trade next season in which he submits a 20-team list of preferred destinations.

Staples recently noted Oilers insider Bob Stauffer speculating the Pittsburgh Penguins or New York Rangers could have interest in Kassian. Some Oilers followers could be against trading Kassian because of his physical presence. However, he’s carrying a $3.2 million annual cap hit through 2023-24. Given the decline in his offensive production, the Oilers would be better off trading him and finding a more affordable option.


STARTRIBUNE.COM: Sarah McLellan recently reported questions about Matt Dumba’s future with the Minnesota Wild have increased of late with the expansion draft on the horizon. With most teams tending to protect three defensemen and three Wild blueliners (Ryan Suter, Jared Spurgeon and Jonas Brodin) carrying no-movement clauses, Dumba could be left exposed in the expansion draft or traded beforehand.

Dumba, however, said he hopes to remain with the Wild. He said he grew accustomed to his name surfacing in the rumor mill near the trade deadline.

TWINCITIES.COM: Dane Muzitani recently reported Zach Parise told reporters he wants to return with the Wild next season. Because of his hefty contract, finding a trade partner seems unlikely while the front office doesn’t seem interested in going the buyout route.

Parise’s future came into question as he was dropped to the fourth line this season and was a healthy scratch late in the season and during the first three games of their seven-game series against the Vegas Golden Knights. However, Parise played well when inserted into the lineup for the final four games of that series.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: The Wild could make Dumba unavailable in the expansion draft by opting to protect eight skaters. However, that puts them at risk of losing one of their good young forwards. Wild GM Bill Guerin will probably try to swing a side deal with the Seattle Kraken to ensure they don’t take Dumba if they leave him exposed. They could also try to convince Suter to waive his no-movement clause. The Kraken could be scared off by his expensive contract.

The Wild and Parise are stuck with each other until his contract expires in 2025. He’ll have to accept a lesser role with the club. As Muzitani observed, that’s something that will have to be worked out between Parise and head coach Dean Evason in the coming months.


  1. I hope pens ain’t into kassian. With Coleman and Hyman even goodrow available there are better options.

    • I hope the Pens do land Kassian … those other guys are grit, Kassian is a beast with truculence … I know he isn’t going anywhere but Malkin’s knee surgery rules out him being moved .. which would have opened space for Kassian, Coleman & Goodrow … Pens would be built for the playoffs, not the regular season … although knowing Mike Sullivan’s disdain for toughness he would probably scratch those guys in favor of small, speedy players …

      and Seattle taking Tyler Johnson in the upcoming expansion draft is wishful thinking …

      Holland resigning Mike Smith is beyond ridiculous … who’s next for the oilers, Patrick Marleau???

      • Mike smith was fantastic . All year . 21-6-3 / 2.31 / .923.
        What would be so ridiculous ? I hope he is resigned to a short term deal, low cost , ideally to play in tandem with a fresh face .
        What would it cost in trade to land Gibson ? Assuming they take koskinen in the deal for cap purposes .
        To Edmonton : John Gibson

        To Anaheim : mikko koskinen
        Caleb jones
        1st round pick
        Too much ? Not enough ? In the range ? I would probably pull the trigger on that type of deal to land Gibson with term and free up koskinens cap hit for his remaining year , price is steep but I think worth it. This would give them a strong tandem and allow both to get the rest they need with maybe a 65/35 split for the younger Gibson

      • I doubt he gets much ice time on a Sullivan run team. I think it would take a sweetener to take Johnson but it’s not out of the realm.

    • Agreed…..Hyman could play wing with Sid and Guentzel and create space for them like younger Hornqvist used to do…

      Coleman/Goodrow also good options…

      • Sid hating playing with horny. Big reason he was traded.

  2. Didn’t get to post this past week but read a lot of them in the evening.
    Just wanted to comment on the leafs early exit.

    All the comments about having to make changes are all garbage. If Tavaras didn’t get injured I am sure the leafs would have won that series.
    Another thing that I find the most ridiculous statement is “injuries are no excuse for loosing” that may apply in the regular season but is stupid to say say that about any teams top player in the playoffs.
    Of course if any team looses one of their top players they are weakened and not as good. All teams that make the playoffs are good and all it takes to beat one team is a key injury.

    In short all the talk about making changes are not required in my opinion and would make them weaker. Teams that trade top players seldom win the trade

    • Hey Flamesfan, there’s no place for common sense here especially when it comes to the Leafs. You’re quite right on a few points and I wonder if anyone else here agrees with you.

      Chrisms mentioned his team picking up Hyman when he hits the open market as a UFA. Sure he’s a good player and don’t mind him going or staying but one thing to consider is he is 29 and as George has mentioned a few times about Marner scoring one or two points in 18 playoff games fail to realize that Hyman has also scored just 2 or 3 points in that span but much older than Marner. Also for anyone counting, 18 is two seven game series and the playin, so basically the last 3 playoffs. We forget his first two. It’s an argument not worth arguing because some people feel more comfortable going with the notion that results are immediate and only relevant to what’s happening right now.

      • To clarify – again – my observation on Marner’s lack of goal production in the playoffs is and was directly related to the fact he’s getting almost $11 mil per to do just that. If not at a 30-40 goal-per-season rate, at least something north of zilch.

        Hyman is NOT being paid to lead the team offensively.

        And I’m not alone in these observations – the same tone comes repeatedly from several self-described “long-time” Leafs fans. I won’t name them – you know who they are.

        Koshan of the Sun sums it up nicely in his recent column – which some will no doubt toss off as coming from a slug, much like Simmons and anyone else in that business who dares to express any kind of negativity towards the leafs. I guess the attitude among those is that, all local media should always be aboard with whatever team management does regardless … never be critical



  3. The Oilers seem to be in a good spot to improve over the summer.
    For the Leafs to move the needle this offseason, they would have to trade one of the core four and, for reasons that have more to do with the salary cap than anything else, the target has become Marner.
    We’ll see how this all develops. Personally I’d like to see a coaching change but that’s not going to happen unless Dubas goes as well.

  4. FlameFan/Ron Moore…everyone of us here has an opinion and they are not going to the same all the time. I have been a Leaf fan since the middle 1950s. My take is almost the polar opposite of yours.

    I think you have to trade valuable assets who are not producing before they lose their value. When is that in the case of the Leafs stars I could not say with certainty. But I do think it is coming. I believe that of Matthews as he won’t be here in 4 years and that Marner’s a % of the cap will not change for at least 3 years.

    Dubas’s central concept of 4 forwards getting almost $40 not stops a balanced roster it also kills the killer instinct Shanahan wants. The salary structure needs an intrinsic sense of just/fair use of salary money before guys will fight for each other.

    I think it is time for the MLSE Board to accept this rebuild is far more likely to fail than succeed and immediately remove Dubas from the decision making process. Then decide to fire Shanahan, Dubas & Keefe. Bring in new eyes, a new theory of roster construction. If any player is a hinderance to this he goes ASAP.

    My Dad used to say if you want a dog don’t buy a puppy. The Leafs have some lonesome eyed cute puppies when they need attack dogs.

    This is one Leaf fan’s opinion, but I fear time will prove me correct.

    • Old Blue Dog, I totally agree with your views, albeit purely from an “outsiders” view of the situation.

      And when you say “I think you have to trade valuable assets who are not producing before they lose their value …” my thoughts immediately jumped to Karlsson – for whom the returns are still paying dividends. The resulting loud chorus of “how dare they trade the best D-man in the league … I’ll never go to another game … he was my hero …” yadda yadda, have since dried up.

      Again, referring to a Koshan article, I think he sums it up perfectly in this one, i.e., the Leafs are not getting their money’s worth with what they’re paying Matthews and Marner to do


    • OBD

      I understand your thoughts, I have the same thoughts about our team here in Calgary, but this conversation would be very different if Tavares’s wouldn’t have gotten injured in the 1st game. I am convinced Toronto would have beat Montreal and then who knows how far they would have gone.
      Besides two of your top 4 players are untradable, Tavares and Marner. Marner because he is making almost 11 million Tavaras because of the no trade.
      If you were able to trade Marner you would be holding salary and selling low
      With regrets down the road.

      One trade that could be made but won’t is Matthews for Jones and a first
      ( have to have assurances that Jones would sign long term for 8.5 or 9 for 7 years)

  5. Flames Fan:

    I agree with you that the conversation would be different had Tavarres not been hurt. But I think that would have hidden temporarily the real issues with the team.

    I do think Marner is tradeable as after his 9 million dollar bonus payment July his average actual salary to the end of the contract would be 6.2 million. Therefore, a team like Buffalo with real 10.2 dollar out for Eichel with Eichel & Marner getting same cap hit might make the trade to save an actual 4 million. Maybe other teams would like to pay 6.2 to get 10.2 cap dollars.

  6. No one wants to come to Edmonton ,face it NTCs will put a end to 99% of the trades Holland tries to make