NHL Rumor Mill – April 29, 2022

by | Apr 29, 2022 | Rumors | 18 comments

More speculation about the Golden Knights’ offseason plans plus updates on Evander Kane and Andrew Copp in today’s NHL rumor mill.


DAILY FACEOFF: The job security of Vegas Golden Knights general manager Kelly McCrimmon was among Frank Seravalli’s 10 burning offseason questions facing the 16 NHL non-playoff clubs.

Seravalli acknowledged the plethora of injuries that walloped the Golden Knights roster this season. However, he cited the almost daily drama that dogged the franchise this season, from shedding Vezina Trophy winner Marc-Andre Fleury last summer to backing the bus over Robin Lehner and a lack of teamwork among their players as they seemingly look over their shoulders wondering who’s next.

The Golden Knights have no salary-cap space, no top draft picks and a shallow pool of prospects. Seravalli feels it’s inevitable that head coach Peter DeBoer will be cut loose but he also wondered if McCrimmon will follow him out the door.

SPORTSNET: Rory Boylen also wondered about the futures of McCrimmon, DeBoer and Lehner in Vegas. He felt that moving on from Lehner would create a problem between the pipes for the Golden Knights.

Vegas Golden Knights winger Reilly Smith (NHL Images).

McCrimmon could be on the hot seat this summer along with president of hockey operations and former GM George McPhee. Their lack of cap space will affect efforts to re-sign original Golden Knight Reilly Smith. Winger Evgenii Dadonov could be moved in a cost-cutting deal to a team on his list of preferred destinations.

NBC SPORTS: Adam Gretz has little sympathy for the Golden Knights as he believes they’re to blame for their plight. He believes the club’s problems run deeper than their injuries this season, pointing out their spending on big-ticket stars created havoc with their salary-cap payroll and cut deeply into their roster depth.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Cap Friendly shows the Golden Knights with $83.8 million invested in 18 active players for 2022-23. With the cap sitting at $82.5 million, they have little choice but to shed some salary, especially if they hope to re-sign Smith.

Dadonov seems the most likely candidate given their failed attempt to move him at the trade deadline. He has a $5 million annual average value through 2022-23 with a 10-team no-trade list but finding a suitable trade partner might not be easy.

Moving Lehner would free up another $5 million but that would mean giving the inexperienced Logan Thompson as their starter. The 25-year-old did a good job filling in for the sidelined Lehner but it could be asking too much of him to take over that role on a full-time basis.


TSN: Darren Dreger reports the Edmonton Oilers will make a concerted attempt to re-sign Evander Kane while the New York Rangers will do the same with Andrew Copp.

Both forwards are slated to become unrestricted free agents in July. Kane has meshed well alongside Oilers captain Connor McDavid while Copp has been a perfect fit on Artemi Panarin’s line. Dreger wondered if term could be an issue for Kane and the Oilers, wondering if three years would be too much.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Kane’s next contract could be determined by the outcome of his ongoing grievance hearing over the San Jose Sharks terminating his contract last January. He had three years at $7 million annually remaining on that deal.

Kane and the Sharks could agree to a settlement with the winger getting something between $4 million and $5 million annually over the next three years. The Oilers could then sign him to a three-year deal worth between $2 million and $3 million. Considering how well he’s playing alongside McDavid, Kane might accept that type of deal.

Copp is completing a one-year deal worth over $3.6 million. He’ll likely seek around $5 million annually on a long-term deal with the Rangers or another club via free agency. The Rangers have around $11 million in cap space with 16 active players under contract for next season and second-line center Ryan Strome also eligible for UFA status. Re-signing those two will eat up most, if not all of that cap space.


  1. I haven’t liked Vegas since they got rid of a very good winning coach. That move and all the trades that ruined their depth and chemistry typified a ruthlessness that did not bode well for their morale or cohesiveness that is necessary in a winning team.

    • Hi JZ

      I think a load of the issues need to be placed on Foley… he had quite an influence on moves (cite Eichel) that McCrimmon made

      The injuries were unforeseen … but pressure by Foley to acquire Eichel basically “for whatever it takes” hampered them in Cap flex if injuries came (which they did… and in buckets)

      It may need something like….

      McCrimmon, DeBoer, Lehner, Dando, Patches; Martinez gone…. and start from there

      As at now…. Adding up all Sals above the line in CapFreindly…. 21 player sals (which actually includes 3 goalies ) @ $83.9 M next year

      Moving Lehner, Dando, Patches; Martinez…. $61.7 M , 17 players….

      So $20.8 M for 6 players

      Will the above happen…. No…. But at a minimum they will have to move Dando; and at least one of Martinez or Lehner

      • Maybe Martinez can go back to LA.
        Buffalo and AZ needs cap, but those pesky NTC’s. Lehner is interesting, I would not trade him unless it is for a cheaper goalie that can tandem with Tommy, would Blackwell work? Or sign Greiss for about $3M…..
        Hey! Package Lehner and Patches to NJ for Bernier, (if healthy) and Pavel Zacha …oh those pesky NTC’s……

      • No, LA has moved on from Martinez, thank you for the assets though.

        Blake has said repeatedly, that they are seeking a left shot dman that is dynamic and 25 years old or younger. Martinez does not fit that description.

        That said I could see LA going after Chychrun, Provorov or even Sanheim, if those Philly guys are truly available.

  2. I would think that Kane would be seeking more than a 3 year deal

    If he gets $15 M in settlement from Sharks (which it seems many in media are prognosticating)…

    $13 M over 4 ($3.5 M Cap) from Oil OR

    $20 M over 5 ($4 M Cap) from Oil….

    Both equivalent (combined with settlement) of him having been extended on Sharks contract for 1or 2 extra years @ $7M

    With that in mind; IF he gets the $15 M from Sharks…. a fair offer might be $16 M over 5…. $3.2 M per

    Now if somehow Arbitrator awards him more from Sharks…. Whole new ball game

    • why would kane take less just because he is getting a settlement from SJ. This guy is broke, he is trying to claim bankruptcy and this may be his only opportunity to put some money away for his life after hockey if he double dips a big contract from his next team and the sj payout. why would he do that for edmonton, he owes them nothing, I love it when hometown fans look at it from only the fan POV. This guy is all for himself, always has been, he will do whatever lines his pockets.

  3. If Kane and the Sharks do settle their dispute – lets say at $4m. For each remaining year on his contract- does that money count against the Sharks cap?

    • Howard, yes, it would count against the Sharks’ cap

      • But would they treat it like a buyout and make it spread out over 6 yrs…..Wasn’t Richard’s settlement spread out even further than a buyout?

      • It’s possible they could go that route. Don’t forget, however, that Richards had considerably more time remaining on his contract than Kane.

  4. Why would Kane take less than market. If he he won the lotto or hit it big with roulette he would sign less with Oil ? The PA will have something to say. Maybe a discount based on his personal preference but not 75% less.

    Not blaming Eichel but what did he do for VGK? Still no career playoffs . Stone looks brutal for $9m . Their strength is defence and will likely be able to move Martinez. With a healthy lineup they would have made the post season

    • Have to agree with ya on that S7.
      I seem to remember him filing for bankruptcy recently?

      This isn’t the same a a 35 yr old star who has $50M in the bank and is chasing a cup one last time.

      If he has turned the corner on his maturity/behavioral issues he can set him self up for life. Plus he has a child and full custody now, so he owes to his family to earn the most he can.

      Oil spending lots of $ up front already. JP and Yam will get a good bump, and are they gonna roll with an even older Smith and Skinner next year in net? Maybe?

      Depends how Smith does in playoffs I suppose, because if he struggles and starts making snow angels again, Holland will have to do something. If Kane stays, somebody good needs to go and they will lose depth.

  5. I think we all know, based on well reported past experiences, that Kane is not thinking the way y’all are thinking…He’s a gambler…. no way he says, “yeah I’ll take less because I’m getting it somewhere else”… if he gets his settlement, he sees that as “playing with house money”. It is just not in his nature….too many outstanding debts…. just saying

  6. Vegas will be ok. They secured a top line center. No easy task. They got some excellent pieces. An offseason to get everything situated and they will be back to being a playoff team next year.

  7. You want to penalize McCrimmon for trying to win a cup?

    Injuries and injuries alone are the reason Vegas missed the playoffs.

    If Kane gets a settlement does it have any bearing on what he can be offered?

    If no, why would he take a discount?

    Kane may have to settle for a 2 or 3 year deal but he isnt taking a discount.

    He may take one on a longer deal but not likely to get one.

    Makes no sense 😕
    Unless there is a cba thing that he isnt allow to earn more?

  8. My brother lives in Vancouver and had heard rumblings that Rutherford and Allvin were considering not re-hiring Boudreau in order to bring in their own guy.

    That would be an awful message to send the players who grew under Bruce. I think he’ll be re-upped for 3 years, but if not, then his phone ought to be buzzing off the hook with calls from Vegas and Philadelphia. If Dallas decides to let Bowness go after an early playoff loss (they considered it mid-season) then they would be in on him too.

    Outliers: a long term project, a la Los Angeles with McLellan, Boudreau would be a good 5 year guy to develop the Red Wings or Devils

    • Wings have long time Yzer-guy in Lane Lambert, that and they plan on drafting his nephew….

      But then the prospect of seeing Jim Montgomery has come up also. I would bet someone is going to snag him!

      • Lane is ready to be head coach. Played in Mens tournament with him and his brothers his nephew will be a good player not much doubt