NHL Rumor Mill – July 13, 2022

by | Jul 13, 2022 | Rumors | 51 comments

The annual free-agent market opens at noon ET today. Check out the latest on Johnny Gaudreau, Nazem Kadri, Claude Giroux, Brent Burns, Darcy Kuemper, Jack Campbell and many more in today’s NHL rumor mill.

SPORTSNET: Elliotte Friedman believes the Philadelphia Flyers must clear cap space if they’re to pursue a top free agent such as Johnny Gaudreau. They could attempt to move winger James van Riemsdyk in a cost-cutting trade. He’s been linked to the Arizona Coyotes, Buffalo Sabres and Seattle Kraken.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: van Riemsdyk has a year left on his contract with an annual average value of $7 million, though in actual base salary he’ll earn $4 million. He also lacks no-trade protection.

NEW YORK POST: Ethan Sears believes the New York Islanders need a winger like Johnny Gaudreau to maximize center Mathew Barzal’s talent. Limited salary-cap space, however, could hamper their efforts to sign the 28-year-old left winger.

TSN: Chris Johnston reports Claude Giroux appears to be in the crosshairs of the Ottawa Senators. Pierre LeBrun reports this morning the Senators appear to be the front-runners for the versatile 34-year-old forward.

Florida Panthers forward Claude Giroux (NHL Images).

SPORTSNET: Elliotte Friedman reports the Senators could also target Giroux’s Florida Panthers teammate (and Ottawa native) MacKenzie Weegar. The Panthers are looking to shed some salary. They’d like to re-sign Giroux, who could also draw interest from the Carolina Hurricanes.

LeBrun believes the Edmonton Oilers are the front-runners for goaltender Jack Campbell while netminder Darcy Kuemper appears headed to the Washington Capitals

San Jose Sharks defenseman Brent Burns could be traded by the end of this week. TSN’s Pierre LeBrun reports the Dallas Stars and Carolina Hurricanes are believed to be on his three-team trade list. He also claimed the Hurricanes have “kicked tires” on the 37-year-old blueliner as well as Montreal Canadiens defenseman Jeff Petry.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: The Sharks will likely have to retain part of Burns’ $8 million annual cap hit through 2024-25 as the Stars and Hurricanes can’t afford to take on his full contract. Otherwise, they will have to take back a contract of equal value or perhaps attempt a three-team trade to spread Burns’ cap hit around.

MONTREAL HOCKEY NOW: Jimmy Murphy cites a rumor from Radio-Canada columnist Martin Leclerc claiming the Montreal Canadiens almost acquire Pierre-Luc Dubois from the Winnipeg Jets at last week’s NHL draft in Montreal. Leclerc claims those trade discussions between the two clubs about the 25-year-old restricted free agent are ongoing.

Murphy also cited RDS’s Renaud Lavoie claiming the Canadiens were very active in trade talks and a deal could come before free agency begins today.

Pierre LeBrun reports the Canadiens are interested in bringing back pending UFA Brett Kulak. They traded the 28-year-old defenseman to the Edmonton Oilers before the March trade deadline.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Canadiens general manager Kent Hughes has quickly established a reputation as a wheeler-dealer. Dubois is rumored to be interested in joining the Canadiens when he becomes eligible for UFA status in 2024.

The Canadiens, however, have limited cap space for 2022-23 so they’ll have to ship out some salary to take on Dubois, Kulak or whoever else Hughes might have his eye on. TSN’s Pierre LeBrun claimed the Carolina Hurricanes have been linked to Habs defenseman Jeff Petry, who’s earning $6.25 million per season through 2024-25.

NEW YORK POST: Larry Brooks reports the Rangers remain linked to Nazem Kadri but it could prove difficult to sign him. The 31-year-old center could command $7 million per season on a six-year contract on the open market. Brooks suggests the Rangers attempt a sign-and-trade scenario involving a third club like the Arizona Coyotes or Chicago Blackhawks to spread the cost of Kadri’s new contract around.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Creative, but unlikely to happen, though it would be quite the accomplishment by Rangers GM Chris Drury if he could pull that off.

WINNIPEG SUN: Scott Billeck reports the Jets are still trying to move team captain Blake Wheeler. He anticipates they’ll have to retain a portion of the 35-year-old winger’s $8.25 million cap hit through 2023-24. It seems doubtful they’ll move Nate Schmidt given the defenseman’s contract.

TORONTO SUN: Terry Koshan reports Maple Leafs GM Kyle Dubas has limited free-agent options to add a backup goaltender with just $6.3 million in cap space and RFAs Rasmus Sandin and Pierre Engvall to re-sign. “Perhaps Ilya Samsonov or Eric Comrie will be a fit.” Koshan believes Dubas’ options could improve if he shed a contract such as Justin Woll ($2 million) or Alex Kerfoot ($3.5 million).

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Weakening depth at one position to improve depth at another isn’t going to improve the Leafs’ chance of winning a playoff round next season or bring their 55-year Stanley Cup drought to an end.


  1. Look for bruins to acquire another retread. Sweeney working the phones.

    • I’m looking for the day you don’t have an uneducated comment.

      • 🤣🥃cheers to that

      • What are we going to look forward to, in getting a chuckle thanks to RWM’s Sweeney hatefest, when Sweeney retires or gets fired?

      • Zacha to Bruins? Confirmation?

      • Nice.

    • Rick, I’m genuinely concerned with your well being. It can’t be healthy to wake up every morning like this. I get being disappointed in your team, but step outside, breathe some fresh air, get to the beach, have a drink or 8.

      There is life outside of sports. It’s going to be okay. I promise!

      • CO, nicely worded. I most often get a good laff from RWM’s diatribes, but he truly is a bit fixated.

        Cheers to both of you and hope this free agent day continues to entertain us all.

  2. I really wish Montreal kept Bergevin as there GM. He was a disaster and would have continued Montreals path to mediocrity. This Hughes guy seems great and is really building this team to be competitive now and in the future. He seems to be targeting big skilled players and doing what he thinks is best for the team. Seriously doesn’t a line of Dach, Anderson and Juraj Slafkovsky sounds like it can score, check and cause headaches to opposing teams. Then is he actually gets Dubois this team is going to be good. Hughes has a big set of gonads.

    • That’s why us Habs fans are feeling very positive about the new management team. They have a plan and the moxie to make the tough moves necessary to get them done. Word is that the excitement and buzz in Montreal around the draft and development camp was electric. Not bad for a team coming off a horrible year.

    • Legion of Doom 2.0

    • Hughes has certainly been active. I think the Romanov trade was good value for Montreal, but the Dach acquisition is questionable. Blackhawks fans weren’t upset to lose him. He seems to have fallen off the trajectory of potential 1C he had when drafted. We’ll see, but Habs fans may regret that one.

      I think Pierre-Luc Dubois is good but not a real 1C. His ceiling may be a Ryan Johansen type, but he’s around his peak years already at 27-28 G and produces 60-61 points if everything goes right. I could see him getting overpaid when he hits free agency, with a contract the team later regrets.

      • Typo there, I meant “he’s around his peak years already and produces 27-28 G and 60-61 points if everything goes right”.

  3. Gonna be a wild day. Lets see which GM sets himself up to be fired first…

    • Dubas & Fletcher…

    • Zacha for Haula, has a nice ring to it. Any Boston fan have some color on Haula? Zacha, is a decent player, definitely needs a change of scenery. Best of luck to him!

      • Haula is a smart player with patience and vision and can play with skill.
        Cassidy put him between Hall and Pasta and that was the B’s best offensive line since Feb. But he is what he is at this point, not gonna improve. On a great contract for what he brings.

        I like Haula, Zacha seems like a guy who has the tools but taking a while.

        Can he blossom into a quality 2C Redmonsters?

      • Hello Ray Bark, Based on what he has done to date with Devs, he would be a real good 3C. However, the Devs rushed his development and throughout most of his career had poor linemates. If you put him with Hall and Pasta, he could blossom. He is also solid defensively and can play on your penalty kill. I always liked him and wish him all the best!

  4. There we are with those Dubois rumors again. Why ruin a great story with reality? Once again, the Jets will not trade him now unless they get an offer that the Habs, and any other team for that matter, are just not in position to give right now. They will sign him to a one year deal. However, next year, if he hasn’t changed his mind about leaving Winnipeg, they will likely have no choice but to trade him.

    I do see the Habs moving out some salary today to clear up space. Obviously, no costly free agents would be coming in, but with Romanov gone, they’ll likely bring in a depth LD like Kulak to provide support while Harris and Guhle develop. If Petry goes, they’ll add an experienced RD as well.

    • Howard if there is any truth to the rumors, Nick Suzuki would have to be part of the return, agree?

      Montreal with the addition of Kirby Dach and adding PLD.

      Chevy is going to want a C in return Suzuki does two things for Winnipeg

      1. give them the C they need
      2. Cost certainty 8yrs at $7.85

      • lol suzy not going anywhere.

      • Suzuki will NOT be part of any deal. That’s why there will be no deal, at least for now.

        Things can always change. If next year, Dubois is adamant that he wants out of Winnipeg and will only sign long-term in Montreal, then Chevy’s position will be weaker and he’ll likely have to trade him for the best deal he can get.

  5. If nothing else this off season has shown that GM’s who feel hogtied by the cap and players feeling the crunch are accounting for giveaways to make space.

    BriseBois excels at this manoeuvring and when everything is said and done we’ll see who joins him.

  6. JVR to Seattle would give them additional assets back in the trade as well as improve their Powerplay.

    How many teams in win-now with cap room that could use PLD until he bolts as a UFA to Montreal as speculated?
    Rangers, Canes, Avs, Calgary

    • AZ still needs to get to the floor so what if Philly holds 25% and sends a 3rd along with JVR to AZ?

      AZ then holds 50% of that sends to EDM for a 3rd.

      EDM needs cap space and AZ needs to hold cap to reach the cap floor but don’t need JVR the player.

      JVR in EDM at near 75% off will fit under their cap. He would also be insurance if Kane doesn’t take a team friendly deal. Heard rumor they final offered him a 4 yr 4.5 m per deal.

      also leaves cap room to add depth and get a goalie for EDM.

  7. Baby steps for the Leafs. Most fans would go crazy if they just advanced to the 2nd round. Golf Leafs Golf

    • Go buckafufalo in you’re own back yard Bob. How have the playoffs treated your golf team? Maybe Malcom can get them back into the hunt for the 18th green

  8. It’s going to be interesting to see which names pop up first when free agency kicks in at Noon. Some of the bigger names – e.g. Gaudreau, Kadri, Palat – may take a bit longer to surface today as contracts are worked out, but I see the likes of Giroux, Campbell, Kuemper. Klingberg, Chiarot, Manson, Mikheyev, Samsonov, Tierney, Rutta, Domi to be among the first announced.

    • I think Trocheck will be an early signing.

      • Best fit I believe would be with the Rangers.

    • @George I read a rumor somewhere Brown was being looked at by EDM? Hear any news on that?

      Thought he is an ideal top9 guy that can go up and down the line up with some grit to his game.

      • I thought if brown was going to Edmonton Puljujarvi would come back to the sens. The oilers since qualified Puljujarvi.

        Now I have the feeling if Ottawa picks up a D via trade Brown will be in that deal.

      • ihatecrosby, haven’t heard of the Edmonton interest – yet – but since he’s already informed Dorion that he intends to check out his UFA options next year (can’t blame him – this will be his last big crack at a career deal), there have been rumblings that Dorion will try to move him now. The Oilers have already had good success with one ex-Leaf – Hyman – so wouldn’t surprise me that they’re interested in Brown.

      • Jeff, if that is how it transpires I can’t see him headed to Edmonton, then, since they don’t have a RD that Dorion would want – or that Holland would be prepared to relinquish.

        He couldn’t be part of deal for Weegar, either, since the only reason Florida would be moving him would be to clear cap space.

  9. It can always be worse. Wake up and your star player of 8 years is leaving and not for money. Good on him Johnny won’t get his $80 mil equivalent more important factors

    E.Kane a reasonable deal and left potentially $10m on the table . Never a fan, but good on him

    Rakell signing had little fanfare but also a very good deal.

  10. As an Islanders fan I get to look forward to rumors that we are in on Johnny Gaudreau and a trade for Tarasenko only to have Lou wind up signing somebody that used to play for the Devils or perhaps Marchment, who he used to have on the Maple Leafs. They need to get clear out Beauvillier, Bailey, Clutterbuck to clear out the cap space to be able to sign a real forward for Barzal.

  11. Kind of on topic, didn’t there used to be a courting period where teams could talk to free agents but couldn’t sign them? Always thought that was a good idea to keep things a bit more level-headed. Was it another Covid causality?

    • I think – not absolutely sure – that the only time an interested team can talk to a pending UFA before the UFA period begins is if the team that owns his rights gives their permission to allow the player and his agent to explore other options – as Edmonton did with Kane.

      Mind you, with some of the long-term high-priced signings announced just minutes after the opening bell – with no previous indication that such permission had been granted – does make you wonder.

      Any views on that Lyle?

      • As per the CBA MOU of 2020, unrestricted free agents are not allowed to speak with other clubs until noon ET on July 1 unless their team gives them permission to do so.

      • Thanks Lyle – that’s what I thought. I suppose we just have to assume that any high-profile UFA whose signing is announced almost immediately after the Noon gong, had such permission. Example – if Gaudreau signs somewhere else within minutes of the opening I guess it indicates he had permission from Calgary.

      • That’s correct, George. In most cases, those deals announced within an hour of the start of free agency was because the player and his agent had permission to speak with a team or teams ahead of time.

  12. Not a word about JT Miller…

  13. some bold predictions

    Tarasenko to the Flames
    Wheeler to the Blues
    PK to the Leafs
    Domi to the Leafs
    Reece to the Leafs
    Marchment to the Leafs
    Kadri to Philly
    Giroux to the Sens
    Weager to the Sens
    Brown to the Oilers
    Soup to the Oil
    Klingberg to the Jets
    Burns to Dallas
    Burakovsky to Washington
    Palat to Detroit
    Miller to NYR
    Toews to Vancouver
    Kane to Colorado
    Zadorov to Isles
    Manson to Boston
    Johnny to devils

    • Heh – those are bold all right. So, if PK, Aston-Reese, Domi and Marchment are headed to the Leafs, who gets moved out to clear the necessary cap space.

      • @DJ
        I like Domi , maybe Marchment
        Holl , Kerfoot will have to be moved out .
        Maybe to Ottawa , lol , Dorion is on a high and willing to do almost anything , lol …
        Leafs are hopefully looking at a backup goalie
        Comrie – Samsonov ?
        I know the TSN panel are scratching their heads with the Matt Murray edition …
        Dubais is very loyal to previous Sault Greyhounds .
        Leafs biggest concern is NOW mode – as per Auston Matthews train of thought 2 years from now .
        As per George – Matthew Knies may be ready for stardom by than !!!

      • George I feel it would be Kerfoot and Holl and maybe even Simmonds or Clifford and also maybe if needed a pick to buy extra cap space. And who knows, maybe Dubas even though he said he wouldn’t does make a nylander trade to free up added space and possibly retain another goalie. We’ll have too see. 😉

      • Ken, Dorion is on a high … but he ain’t high on something 🙂 … neither Kerfoot nor Holl hold any interest for him

  14. Samsonov rumored to be signing in TOR.
    Like that pickup if true.

    • He will be the starter if true

  15. It’s true
    It just happened !

    • @George
      Lol 😂