NHL Rumor Mill – April 6, 2022

by | Apr 6, 2022 | Rumors | 31 comments

In today’s NHL rumor mill, a look at some potential offseason goalie targets for the Oilers while Ilya Samsonov faces an uncertain future with the Capitals.

EDMONTON JOURNAL: Jim Matheson recently suggested the Oilers could be among the teams interested in Ville Husso if the St. Louis Blues goaltender tests this summer’s free-agent market. Husso, 27, has outplayed Jordan Binnington this season for the Blues’ starting goalie job.

THE ATHLETIC: Husso was also on Allan Mitchell’s recent list of possible UFA goaltending targets for the Oilers this summer. Other options could include the Colorado Avalanche’s Darcy Kuemper and the Toronto Maple Leafs’ Jack Campbell.

St. Louis Blues goaltender Ville Husso (NHL Images).

Mitchell believes all three will be expensive. He wondered if Oilers general manager would be able to sign Husso for less than $4.5 million annually over three years.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: The Oilers are expected to let Mikko Koskinen walk via free agency this summer. Aging veteran Mike Smith is signed through next season with a $2.2 million cap hit.

Husso would be the most affordable of the three UFA goalies listed by Mitchell. However, his value in the free-agent market could rise significantly if a growing number of clubs were to consider him a more cost-effective option than Kuemper and Campbell. He’s also only been in the NHL for two seasons and that could make some suitors leery of investing in him.

The Blues could try to re-sign Husso and part ways with Binnington, whose performance has been in decline since backstopping the club to the Stanley Cup three years ago. However, he’s signed through 2026-27 with an annual cap hit of $6 million and a full no-trade clause. A buyout would stretch through 2031-32.

THE ATHLETIC: In a recent mailbag segment, Tarik El-Bashir wrote he doesn’t see the Washington Capitals going into next season with their current tandem of Vitek Vanecek and Ilya Samsonov. The former is fumbling his opportunity to seize the starter’s job while the latter has inspired much confidence.

He believes the Capitals will have to settle on one of them and bring in a veteran capable of being a starter to pair with Vanecek. Samsonov could be shipped to a club that might see the 6-foot 3, 200-pound former first-round pick as an enticing reclamation project. He’d heard rumors before the trade deadline linking Samsonov to the Montreal Canadiens but couldn’t confirm them.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Samsonov’s promising rookie performance in 2019-20 emboldened the Capitals to part ways with long-time starter Braden Holtby. However, he struggled to make the starter’s job his own and wound up sharing time with Vanecek, who has looked the better of the two since last season.

I also heard those rumors tying Samsonov to the Canadiens but they didn’t last long. Maybe the Canadiens were considering shopping Jake Allen before the trade deadline and saw Samsonov as a possible short-term backup replacement. Maybe there was nothing to this rumor at all. It’ll be interesting to see if it resurfaces in the offseason.


  1. The bidding war for free agent All Star and Vezina candidate Jack Campbell is going to be insane.


    • I’m a little leary on Campbell. It was rumoured that he wasn’t actually injured and needed a mental break because of all the pressure of being the number 1 goalie.

      • That’s the word.

    • What a life to be you both living in your realities where what you think is fact, after all, if you think it’s true, it probably is the way you think it, right?

      I know I can’t speak for everyone and not everyone cares to comment on what you consistently write and think is clever, but the reality is, most see your comment for what it is. Its an attempt to hide what little you know about hockey.

      If I’m wrong you can prove it by saying something than you normally do.

      • Thank you so much for your in depth verbiage. Your stellar comments most assuredly have everyone racing in the morning, each and every morning for the opportunity to bask in the glow of your brilliance.

        As one well informed poster here recently stated, your post can be summed up in one word.


        Have a most fantastic and enjoyable day and thanks again for taking time to add your wisdom to our morning perusings.

      • Mr Moore,

        Its very odd that despite your disdain for my musings you dutifully take time to not only read them but to comment on them as well.

        Thanks for coming out. I look forward to your next feeble attempt at being clever.


      • Excuse me!? Where did say in what I posted as being fact?! I even said RUMOUR. That Rumour came from a TSN insider as well. Nowhere did I say anything about it being a fact. Because of that RUMOUR, I am leery of Campbell being a number 1 goalie.
        If it was a fact, then I would have said Campbell ISN’T capable of being a number 1 goalie.

      • Wow…Ron is having a bad day! I can’t speak to everything Kevjam writes, because I don’t take anything nearly as personally as you seem to be, but the word is that Campbell was a way to get some mental rest. There is nothing wrong with that either. His game was in the toilet, and he’s an emotional guy who takes losing very personally. Kev isn’t making light of it, he’s just saying what has been said elsewhere.

    • A team will regret the price on him. He is pretty unproven as a starter. Hasn’t done enough to earn big money

  2. A lot of teams looking for a Goalie this off-season with a lot of dreck out there. Should be interesting to watch some GMs set their teams on fire chasing them…

    • Im sensing a lot of overpays by desparate GMs.

    • Yes, it will certainly drive up the cost of many as well!

  3. oh Ron. I love your sarcasm.

    Campbell only has value to Toronto. The rest of the league sees him as the late-bloomer, head case that he is. Husso outperforming Binnington isn’t that big of a deal, I have a shooter-tutor that could have done better than JB. I think bad goalie deals are going to be less and less. GM’s will look at Price, Bobrovsky, Binnington and Murray and not want to repeat those errors, and I can’t Kuemper getting away from the Avalanche. Though, I’d say Colorado shelters him big time. He’s not THAT good either.

    Varlymov becomes a prized trade chip at the draft. Korpisalo will be somewhere else. It’s like the the guy writing the article focused on some goalies and not others.

    • Campbell has value to others as well, he would be a big improvement over Greiss in Detroit, and could be had for 3 x $4M……just enough time for Cossa to develop into an NHLer.

  4. I wonder if a Varly for Sammy trade would be in the works……Isles maintain a Russian duo, Caps get a proven Vet that they could re-sign for less the following year, and Vanny gets another year to improve.

  5. I heard a rumour on trade deadline day that the Oilers were trying to get Jake Allen as part of the deal with Kulak. Maybe this was why the Canadians were looking at acquiring Samsonov?
    I have a hard time seeing the Oilers also bring back Smith next season. Too many injuries in the last couple of seasons to be reliable. I know Allen isn’t a true number 1 goalie, but he would probably be a good 1B to Skinner being the 1A for the Oilers next season if Holland revisits an Allen deal.

    • I recall the samsonov talk was prior to the allen to oilers talk. But we don’t really know because it was all talk. I think the habs would have moved allen if they go the right offer regardless of samsonov. Allen still has an affordable year left on contract and I don’t doubt habs were starting with at least a 1st, which was probably too rich for the oilers. Funny how the trades work. They probably spent a significant amount of time working on a multi player deal but just couldn’t agree on a few terms. So in the end, they make a lesser trade just so they can wrap-up with some sense of accomplishment.

    • Agree that Skinner will be on the Oil next year as he would have to clear waivers, so now or never.
      I still think Holland wants a more established starter than Allen, unless all that is left at a reasonable price, which he might be. But he ain’t all that either.

      I don’t mind a dice roll on Samsonov, as all tenders seem like a dice roll these days. Still young in goalie years.

      Kuemper is the most proven, but also playing on a very good team that makes tenders look good. Like Grubauer. But Kuemper has proven it in multiple places.

      Kuemper will get paid, question is who bucks up for too long for a 31 yr old tender. I think he prices himself out of EDM, can’t see Holland spending that much. Ain’t gonna be easy to find. Go Skinner go I guess, but running with a rook and Smith is more of a hope than a plan.

  6. The Smith pass to the best player in NHL in OT last night was unreal wow what a play and what a finish. Lyle seems like I’ve been on this website for years my first question to you I believe do you have a way of knowing how long your active readers and writers have been using your website? Think it would be interesting to know I realize some probably have changed their user name a few times. Just a thought take care keep up the good work. Obe

  7. I will be SICK if the Blues don’t resign Husso, BUT WHAT TO DO WITH BINNINGTON???

    • It could be worse. There are teams out there, banging up against the salary cap, that have yet to win a Cup. San Jose looked like contenders for years – 0 cups. Has the championship window closed for Vegas?

      At least St. Louis got in there and won one, and they’ll be a tough out in this year’s playoffs. They’ve got a lot of scoring depth this year, as well as guys like O’Reilly and Saad who are known for turning it up in the playoffs.

      • Fik,

        I know you’re correct and Binnington provided me the greatest memory of my life (wife and daughters excluded), but I just don’t see a good solution for his future!?!

        I would send his $6,000,000 to the AHL (but it’s not my money:)

  8. If I’m Kent Hughes, (And provided Carey Price can prove he still has game and can pass a physical.). I would wave this deal in front of Ken Holland:

    To EDM: Carey Price, Shea Weber cap relief

    To MTL: Conditional 1st

    • Carey would go to Seattle.

      To Kracken: Carey Price, Shea Weber cap relief

      To MTL: Dreiger+ Preds 2nd + Jets ’23 2nd

      • Why would Seattle do that?

        They could’ve had Price for free at the expansion draft, now you think they’ll pay assets for him? And Webers contract wont help Seattle with LTIR relief.

        Makes zero sense.

    • I don’t understand how Price and Weber provides cap relief?
      Weber is a wash but you lose flexibility in off season.
      Price’s contract is a $10M nightmare for 4 years.
      And no, Weber doesn’t help with that.

      At least the way I understand it.

      Not sure there is enough for MTL to add to make that happen.

  9. Sharks have 3 goalies….I believe they will keep KK, but what of Hill and Reimer? Reimer would fetch more than Hill, but I would think Hill goes anyway. Should he go back to AZ, maybe Chicago…Buffalo……could be most any where that needs a back-up.

  10. Interesting Craig. At first I was like NO WAY does Edmon………..wait a minute……mayyyybe.

    • You may have to take a Kassian back maybe?

  11. Im more into Husso than the other two if he plays well down the stretch. Kuemper will cost more and is injury prone and Campbell is even more of a wild card

  12. @Canadian King
    Because Carey’s wife wants to be closer to home! LOL