NHL Rumor Mill – July 21, 2021

by | Jul 21, 2021 | Rumors | 65 comments

The NHL expansion draft begins at 8 pm ET tonight. Check out the latest on Carey Price, Vladimir Tarasenko, Gabriel Landeskog, Jack Eichel and more in today’s NHL rumor mill.


TSN: Pierre LeBrun reports there’s an expectation the Seattle Kraken could make an 11th-hour pitch to the Montreal Canadiens to ask their price to not select Carey Price. LeBrun doubts Canadiens general manager Marc Bergevin will pay it since he and Price agreed the latter would be exposed in the draft.

Will the Seattle Kraken select Carey Price in the expansion draft? (NHL Images)

Price, meanwhile, is slated to be examined in New York on Thursday regarding hip and knee ailments. Kraken GM Ron Francis has had a few conversations with Price’s agent.

DAILY FACEOFF: Frank Seravalli reports Francis has received the green light from Kraken ownership to select Price if they see fit despite the goalie’s health issues and expensive contract.

MONTREAL GAZETTE: Stu Cowan examined Bergevin’s options to replace Price if he’s selected by the Kraken. Free-agent options could include Detroit’s Jonathan Bernier, Toronto’s Frederik Andersen and Boston’s Jaroslav Halak, who began his NHL career in Montreal.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: We’ll learn officially after 8 pm ET tonight if the Kraken snap-up Price. Doing so would free up $10.5 million in cap space for Bergevin to seek a short-term replacement. Possible trade targets could include Arizona’s Darcy Kuemper and Columbus’ Elvis Merzlikins or Joonas Korpisalo.

PHILLY.COM: Sam Carchidi reports of rumors the Kraken could select St. Louis Blues winger Vladimir Tarasenko and flip him to the Philadelphia Flyers for winger Jakub Voracek and a draft pick. Other reports they could target the  Washington Capitals for center Evgeny Kuznetsov. The New York Rangers have also been mentioned because of Tarasenko’s friendship with Rangers left wing Artemi Panarin.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: It would be very interesting to see if the Kraken would go that route with Tarasenko. They’ll have to get something worthwhile in the return to consider it.

Maybe they’d accept Voracek if they select James van Riemsdyk from the Flyers in the expansion draft. Despite Kuznetsov’s personal baggage, the Kraken could take the chance if they fail to land a quality center in the draft. Perhaps they could pry Pavel Kuchnevich and a draft pick or prospect from the Rangers.

Tarasenko isn’t the only player the Kraken could attempt to flip to another club soon after the draft. NBC Sports Adam Gretz also listed Calgary’s Mark Giordano, New Jersey’s P.K. Subban, Nashville’s Calle Jarnkrok, Anaheim’s Adam Henrique and Philadelphia’s Shayne Gostisbehere as possible trade candidates if selected by the Kraken.

Pierre LeBrun also reported Gabriel Landeskog’s camp had a conversation with the Kraken on Sunday but there’s been nothing further since. Unless things change, he doubts the Kraken will sign the Colorado Avalanche. Landeskog is due to become an unrestricted free agent on July 28.

Darren Dreger reports Francis has had a number of conversations with agent J.P. Barry, who represents pending UFAs Dougie Hamilton and Adam Larsson. They could be preliminary discussions. Francis’ window of exclusivity to negotiate with unprotected free agents expires at 10 am ET today.

SPORTSNET: Elliotte Friedman reports the Kraken are locked-in on Florida Panthers goalie Chris Driedger. He wondered if they’ll also attempt to add Frank Vatrano or if Driedger becomes their pick from the Panthers. They’re also interested in St. Louis Blues winger Jaden Schwartz. Do they add him now or select Vince Dunn and add the winger later?

SPECTOR’S NOTE: If the Kraken don’t sign Landeskog, Driedger, Schwartz, Hamilton or Larsson today they can continue contract discussions with them. It just means they’ll be jockeying with other clubs interested in their services as the start of free agency (July 28) draws nearer.

DAILY FACEOFF: Cam Lewis cited a recent report claiming the New Jersey Devils appear interested in moving P.K. Subban. They exposed him in the expansion draft but were also trying to find a taker for the former Norris Trophy winner. Lewis wondered if they can convince the Kraken to take on the final season of Subban’s contract. He carries a $9 million cap hit for 2021-22.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Perhaps that will become one of those side deals we heard so much about leading up to today’s draft. It could take a significant sweetener to convince the Kraken to do that.


THE ATHLETIC: Michael Russo reported the Minnesota Wild continues to have discussions with the Buffalo Sabres regarding Jack Eichel. However, the asking price for the 24-year-old center remains very high.

It’s believed Sabres GM Kevin Adams sought all futures from the Wild. That would mean top prospects Marco Rossi and Matt Boldy plus two first-round picks. Given Eichel’s $10 million annual average value, the Sabres would have to take back a significant salary from the Wild or find another club to act as a third-party broker.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Russo doesn’t see a clear path for the Wild to acquire Eichel unless the Sabres lower their prices. He’s previously reported GM Bill Guerin is reluctant to burn through his cap space or deplete his prospect pipeline.

Speaking of Eichel, The Buffalo News’ Lance Lysowski cited Elliotte Friedman saying the Anaheim Ducks, Los Angeles Kings and Calgary Flames are out of the bidding, at least for now. The Wild and Rangers are listed as possibilities.

TSN: Pierre LeBrun reports Minnesota Wild winger Kirill Kaprizov received a significant offer from KHL club CSKA Moscow. Guerin is aware of it but he believes they can bridge the cap in contract talks with the 2021 Calder Trophy winner.

LeBrun also reports the Winnipeg Jets and Montreal Canadiens are among the teams believed interested in Buffalo Sabres defenseman Rasmus Ristolainen.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: The Jets could lose defenseman Dylan DeMelo in the expansion draft. Canadiens captain Shea Weber could miss all of next season (and perhaps more) due to multiple lingering injuries.

Darren Dreger reports the Arizona Coyotes continue shopping Oliver Ekman-Larsson but his $8.25 million annual cap hit is a tough sell. Perhaps interest will pick up if a team loses a good defenseman in the expansion draft.

Meanwhile, there’s no progress in contract talks between the Coyotes and winger Conor Garland. Several clubs are keeping an eye on the restricted free agent’s situation.


  1. Other reports suggested the Washington Capitals could be the destination for center Evgeny Kuznetsov. That’s very likely considering Washington already owns him.

    Seattle signed Adam Larsson to a 4 yr 16 mil deal … will somebody please wake Ken Holland up from his nap …

    The only way I’d take Voracek is if the pick is a first rounder …

    I get the feeling that Kevyn Adams has overplayed his hand with Eichel and is in way over his head …

    • Ed, that was the way I read it too, the first couple of times through, but it was just a case of poor sentence construction.

      Lyle meant (like the examples he cited previous) that Washington could be the destination for Tarasenko in exchange for Kuznetsov.

      Oh, and I 100% agree with you on Adams


      • Agreed on Eichel as well. The way I see it, every team is out of the bidding unless the Sabres lower their asking price and are more open with medical records.

      • As I opined a few weeks back, when it comes to Eichel Adams is between the classic rock and a hard place. His (and Eichel’s) best bet is to have him start the season in Buffalo and if, by the time trade deadline rolls around and he’s shown no ill effects of that disc problem and is having a decent year, the potential returns will rise dramatically.

    • Wow, Larsson signed cheap. Sure he could have done better on open market.

      • You have to wonder if Dreidger would have as well – he’s been signed by Seattle – a three-year, $10.5 million deal

    • Congrats, you trolled on wording. The intent of the sentence is obviously that Tarasenko would get flipped to Washington in some trade with Kuznetsov coming back.

    • I think it meant the Seattle would select Tarasenko, and then trade him to the Caps for Kuznetsov

      • Can we please bring grammar class to a close. School is out for the summer, but not forever.

    • Im not sure Adams is in over his head but he sure seems unaware that Eichel has a herniated disc. Best solution for all parties is if Eichel plays again and then gets traded, then he might get better offers, now he wants a prime offer for an injured player at 10m, who pays that? No one apparently.

      Will be interesting to see if the FA that Kraken targets are the picks or if the sign them on the 28th and get other players today.

      • Howard, every teacher is a teacher of English. Words to live by, gone forever.

    • Maybe Adams should just give Eichel away for a few 3rd liners and a second rd pick? Nobody on these hockey sites actually knows what the offers are, I do know GMs from Wild and Rangers are crazy if they will pick up a top 10 NHL player for their secondary proven zero prospects.

  2. Lyle,

    If Price is selected then imo the top target to replace him would be Fleury in Vegas, where they are trying to shed salary to make room for a possible Eichel deal.

    And where Lehner is clearly going to take over, if not now then the next season.

    The only question is how much Montréal should demand to absorb Fleury’s contract – lol.

    No, seriously, Cap space is the #1 NHL currency right now.


    • I think that idea makes sense, would definitely fit and the fan base would love him

  3. “Pierre LeBrun reports Minnesota Wild winger Kirill Kaprizov received a significant offer from KHL club CSKA Moscow. ”

    Apparently he was offered 9x $8 million by Minnesota.

    KHL has a cap , $14.4 million
    The highest paid player earns $1.5 million

    Significant? It would take 6 years in the KHL to earn 1 year playing for the Wild.

    • So, 9x$8 million is clearly impossible.

      Why bother citing such foolishness?

      • OK, and we have passed 10 AM, “the weight-challenged lady has sung”.

        All over but the fallout, peoples.


      • typo,
        it was 8x$9 million

  4. I hope the Habs can seal the deal on Ristolainen. He’d be a solid pick up. He has size, skates well and can contribute offensively. I think his defensive game will pick up in the Habs system once he gets away from the mess in Buffalo.
    If that doesn’t work out, I would strongly consider Subban, as long as the asking price is not more than a 2nd and a decent prospect and as long as the Devils retain at least $3m. Salary. His two years in Newark were not productive ones, but I still see him as a top flight D-man. And let’s face it- he was born to play hockey in Montreal.
    The best thing about these guys is that they’re entering their final contract year. If things don’t work out, the Habs obligation is done after a year.

    • David Savard will be a RD option, imo, although 3rd pairing.

      So if Weber is back then that’s where I expect Bergevin to go.

      All dependant on price, of course.


      • Savard would be a solid 3rd line option on RD. But that’s assuming they can pick up a top 4 RD. Or if Weber can still play, which seems highly unlikely now.

      • All the picks have been leaked how does this happen ? It didn’t happen in 2017

        I was excited to watch tonight and now I know all the picks. They were running them underneath the screen on t.v….good grief

        I know they took Branden Tanev from my Penguins…all is disclosed

    • So Risto to Habs for a 2nd 2021 and 2021 3rd

      then flip the 3rd along with Miller

      to NJ to take on Subban and the #4 overall 2021

      • I would do that in a heartbeat.

        Basically two third round draft picks for Ristolainen.

      • Offers will be better than that for risto, and lol at your subban trade.

        Yes NJ will trade the 4th pick to get rid of subbans contract, wtf are you smoking?

        Nj is not a playoff team why on earth would they trade that pick which if probably luke hughes to get rid of the last year of his contract?

      • @MP

        I wrote that because there is good amount of talk of NJ anting to clear cap. That would give them flexbility to make offers to Dougie Hamilton, Landy and other UFA’s. Perhaps even create cap space for a goalie as they are looking for one currently even with Blackwood.

    • He’s been part of the mess

  5. What a kick to the groin for the Oilers! Kenny…pick it up, Dude!

    I’m on the fence about Barrie. I know he brings offense, but we definitely need a new shutdown D a little more. Savard is likely the best choice now.

    • Artsy19, I read elsewhere that Hyman visited the Oilers and that there’s talk of a sign-and-trade with the Leafs so he’d be able to get an 8-year term from Holland. I know the guy is trying to get a long-term security blanket, but EIGHT years? For a plugger?? That would make the Larsson loss look like a misplaced donut.

  6. Bruins are in need of a lot of pieces (wingers,Dmen,Goalie )but they can’t forget to get a couple of player protectors … Miller gone and Frederic skates around laughing at everyone isn’t really a peacekeeper…they have nobody

  7. Picks are already being leaked. Also ufa signings. Besides Larsson, Seattle has a deal with Oleksiak. Being reported that the Habs pick isn’t Price. Dunn picked, not Tarasenko.

    • Looks like Price is staying a Hab! Great news. Now I can continue to wear that #31 Carey Price Habs jersey my son bought me for my birthday a few years ago.

    • Two Dmen Bruins could’ve used Larsson and Oleksiak….

      • If that article is accurate, than Minny has a side deal in place to avoid Kaapo being taken for sure! Philly will also be sad, neither JVR or Voracek were taken. Also getting Giordano, Oseliak, Dunn down the left… with Larsson on the Right side with Hayden Fleury & Jeremy Lauzon in the picture… that is a really impressive starting defense for the Kraken.

      • Hi Slick

        I’m guessing that some (much?) of these are speculations

        Brayeuther (Clb)??? 27… less than 30 NHL total games…. And Francis ignores all of those other unprotected players by Jarmo… if so…. Definitely a side deal… 1st plus

        Re D on list … very promising list


        Re Khako over Soucy…. I’m not 100% convinced re a side deal.

        If G’s selected per list… Driedger starter with 2 reasonable back-ups… not a huge miss on selecting Soucy (godd size, speed, sense, contract) over Khako

        There could be a side deal ; it’s possible; and I’ve already gone on record many times re my Soucy bromance…. So I could be jaded and biased….

        McC over Kerfoot makes big sense to me…. and thus Leafs lost (as part of the expansion draft)… only a 7th (‘23) AND a (possible) career AHLer…. what other team can claim that…. Fantastic for Leafs…. But we can’t credit Dubas for this…. This gift was care of panicking and confused ; last minute pants down Hextall (with Burkie whispering “sweet nothings” into his ear)

        If list is true…Pens lost two very important pieces from last year’s team…. Just to protect a 4C that could have been easily replaced with Gaudreau …. with the “bonus” of two assets that will likely never step into an NHL game

        Sure… they cleared $6.4 M in space… but have to replace the two players

        There is no player in the NHL that I know of, that is mid 20’s, excellent on PP, was on pace (82 GM) for 27 goals this past year; is a C & W; can (and did) play in at 2C AND 3C when needed; has an excellent shot; and played very well at W on any of the top 3 lines…. Oh yeah… for a measly $2.9 M cap hit

        So this Leafs fan says 👍👍👍👍👍👍👍👍👏👏👏👏👏👏👏👏😁😁😁😁😁😁

        This Pens fan says 💩🤬🤮😡💩🤬🤮💩🤬😡🤮👎👎👎👎👎

  8. Today read an article Seattle linked taking McCann – this happens – laughing – looking forward to Pengy’s comments.

    • Hi SpeedKills

      See above

      I have to stop crying (as a Pens fan) as I have an important meeting with a client at 4

      The Leafs side of my brain is ecstatic

      • @ Pengy All the picks have been leaked how does this happen ? It didnt happen in 2017 I’m pissed not even going to watch tonight….what’s the point.

        I know every selection espn must be pissed..

        Like you said we lost two players to protect a 4th line player in Blueger..

      • OK, your ecstatic that they get to keep Kerfoot and Dermott?? Because there was bugger all else on that list not UFAs as well that will be a regular in the NHL.

      • Pens lost 2 players off a team no where good enough to win a Cup.

        Pittsburgh can easily replace both stiffs at half the cost.

        6 million in cap savings.

        Wipe your eyes, dry your tears and get ready for the real tear down thats coming.

    • Speed kills..

      All the picks were leaked….. they are all out.

  9. Reading they’re taking Giordano too. Clears some cap for Flames.

  10. And now rumors that Rangers might be trading for Gio. Crazy. Better be salary retention there

    • wow…mmhhhhhh that is interesing…

  11. Im more annoyed at the entire list (minus Detroit and Chicago) being leaked.

    Way to keep tight wraps on this stuff NHL.

    No point in tuning in for skittles tonight.

    also not did the bruins not sign one of those decent D men, they lost one too.

  12. Seattle’s trades should be announced tonight though. That will make it more interesting

    • With Seattle taking Eberle, Tarasenko to Isles seems like a good bet now.

    • Yeah forgot about that….you are right should add some more interest..

  13. So much for the suspense.

    Boooooooo NHL, boooooooooo.

    Zero need to watch the Krakens draft now.

  14. Soooooooo, the Leafs traded a prospect and a pick (7th rd) to Pittsburgh for McCann and then leave him unprotected so the Kraken could take him in the expansion draft?

    Leafs keep Kerfoot who they clearly didnt want to hold on too. Wouldnt that trade have made more sense after the Krakens picked their roster?

    Leafs lose the prospect, the draft pick and the player.

    Boy Wonder Kyle Dubas and the Shanascam strikes again.

    • Careful, Ron, as acknowledged non-Leafs fans don’t you know we’re not supposed to comment on anything they do – or don’t do? Apparently that’s the purview of only card-carrying members of LeafsNation!

    • Ron, they were going to lose a roster player anyway. They protected Justin Holl using the eight skaters formula. It is not that big a deal.

    • Hi Ron

      If the posted pick is correct…

      Leafs only lost a 7th in 2023 and a player certainly not assured of ever playing in the NHL… pretty fair chance he doesn’t make it to the NHL

      I can’t think of a single team (not named Knights) who will lose less in the expansion draft

      This boon is NOT on Dubas… but from a Hextall/Burkie blunder to protect a 4C that could have been replaced by Gaudreau

      Fantastic for Leafs

      Absolutely terrible for Pens

      I’m starting to wonder if Hextall (after being instructed by Burke); also reached out to Rutherford for advice

      • @ Pengy..hopefully better things to come. I know you are high on Tarasenko (me not as much) . Maybe Jason Zucker and a pick or Zucker and Petersson to the Blues for Tarsenko..??


      • Pengy, please explain your rationale for it being “fantastic for the Leafs.” I am really curious to hear y our reasoning. Had they not dealt away a body and a 7th round pick for McCann the worst they would have lost to Seattle was either Kerfoot or Dermott. By what stretch is keeping those two “fantastic?”

        Because, other than them – and UFAs like Andersen and Hyman which Seattle wasn’t taking anyway – there is absolutely nothing on their exposed list that could remotely be “mourned.”

        The Leafs lost nothing because there was nothing to lose – other than McCann who they essentially paid for and then literally gave away.

  15. I’ll start my own rumor Lucic to the Bruins for a draft pick and the Flames holding $$$ back

  16. Probably going to see the Garland trade to Boston happen

    • Would ya want to see Kessel & Garland to BOS for DeBrusk and picks?

      would give them 3 lines of scoring

      • Not a bad idea but there’s not enough $$$ for what they want to do … need to many pieces … DeBrusk would have to go along with Coyle

  17. According to TSN Hockey Insider Pierre LeBrun, the Winnipeg Jets and Montreal Canadiens are among the teams who have shown interest in Buffalo Sabres defenceman Rasmus Ristolainen.

    • Lyle,

      Please get rid of my last post.

  18. Looking forward to the McCann video tribute when the Kraken visit Toronto.

    Super emotional evening with nary a dry eye in the house.

  19. Boston dumb move leaving Lauzon off the protected list, I would have given up Matt before Jeremy Lauzon. Those Pirates from Seattle are robbing the b’s blind unless Sweeney pulls a rabbit out his ……….. just another reason to fire this pug and please NO YANDLE NOOOOOOOOOOO YANDLE!!

  20. Seattle took 11 Dmen …..they are going to trade at least a couple of them