NHL Rumor Mill – August 20, 2022

by | Aug 20, 2022 | Rumors | 10 comments

Why didn’t the Islanders land Kadri? What’s the latest on Isles RFAs Noah Dobson and Alexander Romanov? Who will the Golden Knights turn to for goaltending with Robin Lehner out for the season? Find out in today’s NHL Rumor mill.


NHL NETWORK: Elliotte Friedman believes the New York Islanders were interested in Nazem Kadri. However, he thinks they struggled to free up the necessary cap space to sign him, whereas the Calgary Flames were in a better position to clear cap room. On Thursday, the Flames signed the 31-year-old center to a seven-year, $49-million contract.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Lamoriello isn’t sure what the Islanders’ next move will be. They’ve been in the market this summer to bolster their offense. General manager Lou Lamoriello reportedly had an interest in Johnny Gaudreau before he signed with the Columbus Blue Jackets. There was also speculation he was working on a trade with the Vancouver Canucks for J.T. Miller but it apparently fell apart during the NHL Draft last month.

The Islanders have over $11 million in salary cap space, but most of that will be going toward re-signing two key restricted free agents. Speaking of whom…

New York Islanders defenseman Noah Dobson (NHL Images).

Friedman believes Lamoriello has already signed RFA defensemen Noah Dobson and Alexander Romanov to new contracts. He guesses Romanov will come in around the $3 million range per season. Friedman believes Dobson’s will be “a big number”.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Dobson is coming off a breakout performance, netting 51 points on a club that was among last season’s lowest-scoring teams. That big number Friedman is referring to could be over $6 million annually.


SAN JOSE HOCKEY NOW: Sheng Peng cited a league source claiming the Vegas Golden Knights intend to start the season with their current goaltenders unless something falls into their laps. Starter Robin Lehner is sidelined for the season recovering from hip surgery, leaving Logan Thompson, Laurent Brossoit and Michael Hutchinson to fill the void.

Brossoit is also recovering from hip surgery but is believed ahead of schedule. However, he’s not expected to return to action until several weeks into the coming season.

Peng noted the Sharks have three goalies in Kaapo Kahkonen, James Reimer and Adin Hill for the coming season. Reimer could be the odd man out but the Sharks are rumored to be seeking a second-round pick for him. Peng said it’s uncertain if the Sharks and Golden Knights have discussed Reimer but he thinks the latter could be unwilling to part with a second-rounder.

NYI HOCKEY NOW: Stefen Rosner considers it unlikely that the Islanders will part with veteran netminder Semyon Varlamov. Nevertheless, he wondered if the Golden Knights would be willing to offer up defenseman Nic Hague and a mid-round pick for Varlamov if their current goalies fail to get the job done.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: The Golden Knights will likely use next month’s training camp/preseason schedules to evaluate their goaltenders before determining if they need an upgrade. Thompson showed promise down the stretch last season. If he can rise to the occasion, they’ll be content to stick with what they’ve got and see how the season unfolds.

If Thompson struggles, the Golden Knights could hit the trade market to avoid falling out of playoff contention. Maybe they’d be willing to pony up for Varlamov if the Isles are willing to move him and if the Golden Knights aren’t on his 16-team no-trade list. Otherwise, they’ll have to consider other options like Reimer.


  1. Vegas is paying the price for trying to buy a Cup. Until they actually start building up a farm system, things like the Lehner situation will cause them to be a “close, but no cigar” team

    • PB

      No doubt. They would be better today if they kept Suzuki Tartar and the 2nd rd pick Jury still out on the eichel trade

    • I think all 32 teams would “buy’ the cup if that would get them over the finish line.
      IMO no way is Vegas going to go with those goalies. They will have to give up something of value for a decent goalie. 5 mil is pretty high for Varlamov, but he’s more dependable than those 3.

    • Well if you don’t go for it, swinger for those fences. Your not doing it right. Hindsight makes us all geniuses. I seen nothing wrong with the moves they made in the past to get that cup. If they start having. Huge misses with their swings now it’ll be time to do what all teams in their position have done and rebuild.

  2. For all of the heat Ron Francis has taken for not having the same early success as Vegas, I think Seattle is more set up for the future.

  3. Vegas, Montreal and the bruins will be this years patsies.

  4. I believe the Isle will be a lot better this year. Unless they have to deal with Monkey Pox this time around 😜
    Dobson is a stud and they have always won with limited offence.
    Lou chose to move their first for D and could have for a scoring forward

    • Agreed! However I do believe Lou will do something! It’s basic math really- we score 2.79 (?) goals per & we give up slightly over 2. Not exciting, but it’s proven. Now, considering how theD & goaltending were early on last season- there’s still room for improvement. The offense WILL be better, again considering how poorly the forwards played early & on/off throughout the season they can’t be worse. PP needs to step it up (again!) pieces are there. I believe Lou has them all on a “prove-it” basis. If “the house” needs to be cleaned, it’ll be done @ the TDL.

  5. Isles fan who drops in now and then.

    Personally I am astounded the the Isles owners would rather listen to a 3 time Cup winner and 2 time winner of the GM of the Year Award, than the always right “insiders” or the fan base.

    What’s wrong with these guys?

    My faith is 100% in LL.
    Is it frustrating to see all the moves being made wile we seemingly do nothing?
    Yes, it is.

    Deal with it!!

    Lou is a professional.
    Let the professionals run the show.

    Last year was an anomaly.
    If our players can play up to their potential the Isles will contend.

    My own feeling is that Lou is going to pull a puck moving D Man out of his hat.

    Plenty of time left.

    • To some point I agree with you. But… we missed playoffs by 16 points last season. Every team has improved except Islanders. Lou is asleep at the wheel. I’m ok with letting Trotz go which was needed, but Lou should have held him to attract players. We may have had Gaudreau or others of he did. So glad we did not get Kadri. Total nightmare and locker room headache