Sunday NHL Rumor Roundup – June 18, 2023

by | Jun 18, 2023 | Rumors | 39 comments

The latest on the Leafs, the Devils could shop Yegor Sharangovich and an update on the Oilers in the Sunday NHL Rumor Roundup.


TORONTO SUN: Lance Hornby reports Maple Leafs center Auston Matthews is still expected to sign a contract extension. Matthews and his agent met in Arizona this week with Brad Treliving, the Leafs new general manager.

SPORTSNET: Elliotte Friedman reported on Friday that he believes Matthews will re-sign with the Leafs. He felt the club will try to sign him to a maximum eight-year extension though he’s not sure how likely it is that Matthews will agree to a term that long.

Freidman believes there’s a sense of urgency on the Leafs’ part to get this done as soon as possible rather than have negotiations drag on through the summer so as not to adversely affect their long-term plans.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: It’s rumored the Matthews camp envisions a three to five-year deal so the 25-year-old superstar can still cash in on another lucrative contract while he’s still in his playing prime. Either way, his next deal will likely exceed the league-leading $12.6 million average annual value of Colorado’s Nathan MacKinnon.

Hornby also noted there are rumors suggesting the Carolina Hurricanes might trade Brett Pesce if they fail to sign the 28-year-old defenseman to a contract extension.

Toronto Maple Leafs winger William Nylander (NHL Images).

At $4.025 million, Pesce would be a welcome addition to the Leafs blueline but they’d have to trade a salary. Hornby suggested William Nylander, who would play a larger role with the Hurricanes than his current one in Toronto. The 26-year-old winger is a year away from UFA eligibility.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: It’s believed the Hurricanes are intent on signing Pesce but there are rumors that the negotiations got off to a rocky start. It’ll be interesting to see how those talks unfold in the coming weeks.

I’m just spitballing here but I think the Hurricanes would be interested in a Pesce-for-Nylander swap if the Leafs were on board. The Canes have the cap space to take on the winger’s $6.962 million cap hit for next season.

Nylander has a 10-team no-trade clause starting July 1. If the Hurricanes are on that list, this hypothetical deal would have to go down by June 30 unless he’s willing to waive it for Carolina.

In other Leafs news, Hornby believes pending unrestricted free agents Alex Kerfoot and Justin Holl won’t be back. UFA forward Michael Bunting will have to accept a hometown discount to remain with the Leafs.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Elliotte Friedman believes Bunting has priced himself out of Toronto.

The Leafs would welcome back UFA center Ryan O’Reilly. However, many clubs will look to pay him more than the cap-strapped Leafs.

Hornby mentioned the Leafs could buy out or attempt to trade goaltender Matt Murray.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: The preference would be trading him but they’ll have to package him with a sweetener or retain some of his salary to make it happen. Given his injury history, a buyout before the June 20 deadline wouldn’t be surprising.

THE HOCKEY NEWS: The Leafs reportedly aren’t close to a new contract for pending UFA defenseman Luke Schenn. It’s believed he’s seeking term and no-trade protection in his next deal.


NEW JERSEY HOCKEY NOW: James Nichols cited Sportsnet’s Elliotte Friedman wondering about whether the Devils could put Yegor Sharangovich on the trade block. The 25-year-old is a restricted free agent coming off a down year of 13 goals and 30 points following a 24-goal, 46-point performance in 2021-22.

Friedman said that he’d heard that “some talks picked up around him”. He indicated that someone told him not to be surprised if something went down here.

COLORADO HOCKEY NOW: Evan Rawal believes the Avalanche could be interested in Sharangovich if he hits the trade block. He pointed out how they’d landed players in the past such as Andre Burakovsky, Devon Toews and Alexandar Georgiev made available by other clubs looking to cut salary or in need of a change of scenery.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Sharangovich is coming off a two-year deal with an AAV of $2 million. He’d be an affordable pickup for any club seeking a versatile middle-six forward in his mid-twenties with 20-goal ability. The asking price could be a second-round pick.


EDMONTON JOURNAL: Kurt Leavins thinks Kailer Yamamoto is in play this offseason. He believes the Oilers want to get an asset in return to clear his contract from their books. A buyout is also a possibility.

Leavins also anticipates that defenseman Cody Ceci will be back next season. He felt Ceci when fully healthy can return to being the player he was a year ago plus his $3.25 million AAV is a good fit for the cap-strapped Oilers.

The Oilers are unlikely to part ways with Philip Broberg. Leavins also dismissed the notion of defenseman Evan Bouchard signing an offer sheet with another club.


  1. Holl would be a solid pickup for the Habs, who can use depth on the right side of the D. A solid middle pairing guy who would be useful until Mailloux is ready to make the jump to the NHL. Term may be a problem. His AAV likely won’t be unreasonably high but I could see him seeking 5 years. Hughes probably would only want 2 or so.

    • As it stands now pending a trade, the Habs will have the following 8 D-men.

      Guhle – Savard
      Mathison – Edmundson
      Xhekaj – Barron
      Harris – Kovacevic

      Wideman, Kovacevic, Barron & Savard are handed shots & Harris has proven he can play the right side very well.

      There are also Mailoux (R), Struble (L) & Trudeau (L) who could push for an opportunity soon during this rebuild.

      IMHO, the Habs need to reduce D-men, b not add.

      • No kidding, Uwey. Howard must not have had his coffee to suggest adding any defenceman let alone Holl.

        It’s almost a sure bet the Habs will move one or more D.

      • Uwey,

        Quantity does not equal quality. Some of the guys you mention have to be moved out. Edmundson is on his way out. Wideman will spend the year in the AHL where his entire salary will be buried. Kovacevic is a career AHLer; he basically played with the Habs last year because there was no other option and winning wasn’t quite as important as it will be going forward. Mailloux, Struble & Trudeau will need at least one year in the AHL before they’re ready (one more year in Trudeau’s case). They are still weak on the right side and should bring someone in. Dumba or Klingberg would be other options if they’ll take short-term deals. There is some talk in the blogosphere about possible deals for Adam Boqvist or Sean Durzi. They’d be good options.

      • Howard, you would take Holl over Kovacevic??? The are the same size & Kovacevic is the better skater.

        As a rookie playing 77 games on a really bad team last season, Kovacevic was a plus three last season.

        Add that Kovacevic is six years younger, I really think Holl over Kovacevic regression not progression.

        Personally, I see a lot of Jeff Petry in Jonathan Kovacevic at 25 years of age when I watch him as opposed to your seeing a career AHLer.

        That said, opinions are created through each individual’s eyes & not everyone agrees in what they see.

      • LJ, I’m not a coffee drinker. Maybe I ought to start.
        I stand by my comments. I just don’t see Kovacevic as a long-term solution and the Habs need better players than him. Especially on the right side of the D, which is an organizational weakness. Holl would be a possibility but far from my first choice. Trying to pick up Boqvist would be the wisest course. A solid young D-man for a team hoping to keep improving.

      • To echo Howard quantity doesn’t equal quantity.

        Guhle – Savard
        Mathison – Edmundson
        Xhekaj – Barron
        Harris – Kovacevic

        Edmundson is a LD not a RD and he has been injured more often thannot for the past two years.

        Xhekay has the right size and attitude but far too raw, poor gap.

        Harris is a good skater but soft with no presence in the front of the net and corners.

        Barron is soft as well, same pros and cons as Harris.

        Savard is solid but should be a third pairing.

        Kovacevic has talent but you can’t teach a mean streak.

        Guhle has the attitude and ability.

        Matheson has all the tools to be a top 4.

        The Habs did well with what they had last year but on a solid NHL team, Guhle, Harris, Barron, Xhekai would be in the AHL, Edmunson and Savard would be dumped. Matheson would be a solid 3rd pairing,

        D in the NHL need to be big, mobile and have serious attitude.putting fear into the forwards in front of the net and corners.

        Habs had that a few years ago, VGK had it this year.

      • Well Howard and HF30, we are all entitled to our point of view. Mine is that all the D who are listed on cap friendly are NHL defencemen.

        Of course rookies have some development to go through – Xhekaj is too prone to fight and loses his position sometimes going for a hit. Guhle needs to pick his spots when rushing. All showed they could play and to Uwey’s point there are several others who will need development.

        I say now, none of those on the roster now will find themselves in Laval unless they are waiver exempt. I expect a few will have to be traded- but not given away.

    • smokey smoke smoke on Sunday are we lol
      holl is junk

    • Holl is not getting a 5 year contract from any GM and the habs definitely don’t need him.

  2. Confirmed that Hannifin not resigning. With Calgary. He is only going to get better and a solid young defence man. A much better option than Joe Pesce

    Nylander Hannifin package . Tre is obviously familiar .

    • @ silverscreen.
      I would love a noah hanafin elias lindholm package to Pittsburgh..
      What would it take?
      I would go Jake Gue tzel 40 goal scorer young 24 year old defenseman Pierre oliver Joseph and a 2024 1st round pick.


  3. Hannafin, Pelletier for Nylander

    • Is Hanafin the type of defenceman Toronto needs? He’s more of an offensive defenceman.

      I’d be more inclined to trade Nylander for Pesce from Carolina.

      Could an offer of Nylander to Nashville pry Saros away?

      A buyout or trade of Murray is a must. Woll is not waiver exempt any more.

      • How do the Leafs trade Murray & not cost themselves even more in the long run???

      • Leafs could use more D with a good first pass and Hanifan has some size to absorb hits.
        Good fit and Canes get thin if they lose Pesche

        Toronto has to move Marner or Willy. cant keep trying this core with the lack of D depth and bottom forwards who contribute

      • Nylander + Samsonov for Saros +2023 Pens 2nd and 2024 Jets 2nd
        Maybe they could sign Bunting then.

      • I understand the thought but in my opinion, Nylander is a very good player but not an absolute game changer the way Saros is.

        I would also expect Nashville to want more younger players/prospects or high draft picks back for Saros with the way the team is trending and even then it would be an extremely high price.

  4. Re; The Mapleleafs

    Willie Nylander has become the Leafs 2nd best forward this year and young at 26 he gets better every year.👌

    they should try to move John Tavares…. i know he has a NMC…. but he is nowhere near as good as the other 3 forwards the leafs have and they are paying this guy JT $11.M 😳❗️

    the 2023-4 season maybe a bit of a non eventful year for the leafs as they need to clear cap space
    like Matt Murray, and see whats up with d/man
    Jake Muzzin if they need to repace or he comes back… ❓

    They only have $9.M in cap space to fill 7 UFA positions and….. young goaltender Samsonov will cost them minimum $3.M to $4.M….
    So the really need to move MM contract out🤔
    maybe be they use the boston 1st rd pick to do that and get a 2nd pick back from a rebuilding team who wants a 1st rd pick …

    • Unfortunately for the Leafs it is basically impossible to trade Tavares. He won’t wave the NMC I would assume at all. I won’t be surprised if he’s planned on finishing his career in Toronto whether it be cheap deals to stay after or the end of this contract.

      The thought process is right if it didn’t include the NMC, because of that I would sit that in the back of your mind and not even bother trying to imagine it happening.

    • williew

      Are you suggesting the Leafs would need to add A12 to round pick + Marner just to dump his salary?

      He’s arguably the best RW in the NHL…top 3 at least. If he were made available 31 teams in the league would line up to acquire him in a trade.

      • Hi Daryl,
        MM is Matt Murray who i was mentioning above

        (So the really need to move MM contract out🤔)

        Maybe be they use the boston 1st rd pick to do that and get a 2nd pick back from a rebuilding team who wants a 1st rd pick …
        if they can ? or could..? Dump John Tavares….

    • Sorry, Marner #1, Matthews #2.
      You can debate between these two, but Willy is a distant #3.
      There are nights when Willy is the best player on the ice, but those are few and far between.

  5. The Leafs have of course no choice but to sign Matthews but his increased salary will ensure the Leafs continue to be a developmental farm for other NHL teams who will continue to acquire Leaf players they can no longer afford.

    • Hi LJ

      Leafs are more or less cornered (public pressure) into re-upping AM; but they do have a choice.

      AM is not Gretzky; and he was traded in his mid 20’s with tons of records coming well after he was traded.

      Not saying that they will do it… but AM would be sought after by many teams….. and could be converted into (might take more than one trade)…. top 6 C; top 6 Winger; and 2nd pairing D-man….. for less of a Cap hit than he gets now; and definitely less than a cap hit than the one he will get

      I’ve posted before this hypotetical multi-trade deal. NOTE: AM has to be on board, to end up as franchise player, and Captain , of the Krakken (NOTE again…. Krakken….. no state taxes); as the trade formally needs to take place post July 1st (when he’s already been paid his SB; and after his trade protection formally happens)

      If he agrees:

      To Kraken : AM (@ 50% retained by Arizona [goes there first]); that’s just $375 K cash and only $5.8 M Cap; but Kraken then sign (day after Yotes get him from Toronto, retain, and send him on to Kraken) him 8 @ $15 M (equal to $21.5 M in
      Toronto) who immediately make him captain.

      To Toronto: McCann, The Big Rig, Crouse (from Yotes); that’s 3 players (top 6 C, top 6 W, 2nd pairing behemoth ) for about $2.1 M (at least) less Cap than they’d have to allow for AM in 24/25 onward; and only $2.3 M more in Cap for 23/24 for 3 vs 1 player; AND their (the 3) have a much greater production than individually given by AM. Plus 2 thirds from Yotes

      Yotes: 2 firsts (Kraken); for 23/24 they unload $4.6 M cash owed, convert to just $375 K cash owed (retention sal balance on AM for 23/24) AND actually gain Cap hit (was $4.6 M, now $5.8 M); and rid future (24/25 onward) cash commitments of $13.5 M. Yotes are haemorrhaging cash; absolutely need Cap

      Would both Kraken and Yotes do this deal….. in a heartbeat

      Would Leafs do it…. unlikely due to Public pressure …..

      I was just pointing out that Leafs (Treliving) actually do have options…. AM is going to try and get 3 @ $15M (likely to get 3 @ $14M) in the hopes of staying healthy and getting 8 @ $17M (when cap is mid 90’s or greater) in 3 years.

      If Leafs re-up BOTH AM and WW….. they will actually be worse off than now (1/2 Cap on 4 forwards) in 24/25…. as that will be $47 M (minimum) for the 4 in 24/25….. and not a chance the Cap is $94M by then

      Something must be done

      • Not sure the Kracken do that Pengy.

        So if I am reading it right SEA trades their leading point getter and goal scorer (40!) on a good contract, a 6’7″ shut down D man who leads in PK time and also signed with term on a decent deal, and 2 first round picks, for AM who is cheap for 1 year and then will be the most expensive player in the league and sounds like he doesn’t want max term?

        Maybe they do? But at first glance I wouldn’t if I was Francis. While not an crazy proposal, in a heartbeat might be a stretch. I would say at best 50/50 to unlikely.

        But points for creativity, and ya I agree, they could trade AM for a good return, that just sounds like a bit much. Zona would definitely do that deal, although them getting even worse is a scary thought.

      • Pengy, you really over think this.
        If Matthews goes to Seattle, they send 2 centers back and a LD. Simple.
        Gourde, Wright, Dunn and Trono’s 2nd

      • Ray and JZ

        Valid points

        I was being specfic in the trade

        My point was more that Leafs could make a trade (likely trades) that ends up with 3 roster spots (top 6 and/or 2nd pairing ) for AM and would do so with Cap savings in 24/25 and at max an extra $2M in Cap in 23/24; and it would be 3 roster spots instead of 2

        JZ…. Your trade has reasonable value …. But Leafs need a here and now return…. Wright (won’t be top 2 line C this year; and picks back are futures not important to Leafs now

        Leafs could (don’t cringe Leafs fans) go JT @ 1C with McC at 2C…..

        With your deal…. JT & 1C; Wright 3C…. Still need a 2C

        Personally , I’d like Treliving to at least make some calls before signing an expensive re-up

  6. What about Travis Konecy and Laughton to TML for Murray 2 1st whenever Toronto has them and 2 seconds and a prospect

    Tk replaces Bunting
    Murray to PHILLY creates cap space and Laughton is that solid affordable depth

    Philly gets some good draft picks to retool

    Hold half of Murray and trade him to a contender for more picks

    • @Pengy, your 2C is Gourde😄👍👍

    • Travis Konecy want to come to Edmonton and play with the Best Centre and 2nd best centre in the game….Travis Konecy👍

  7. I wonder if JT would move his no move clause to join Colorado. Leafs pick up $4.5M of JT salary for Colorado’s first pick this year.

    Colorado gets the second line centre at a decent price. Toronto can use the draft pick in another trade and have cap space to to take on another contract or use in the UFA market.

    • AZ would be the team I’d ask to retain

      tML will need all the cap
      Space they can get to sign their core 3

    • That’s interesting, good hockey player. Don’t understand why he is so maligned in Toronto? Perhaps use the savings on salary to re-sign Compher? That way take care of the middle! Still think the Avalanche probably need to make a hockey trade to fill the holes? GO AVS!!!!!

  8. I believe that Armstrong is “laying in the weeds” with his 3 1st round picks just waiting to pounce. Each of the names that you are discussing are options—Sharangovich, Pesce, Nylander, Bunting, Hannifin???!!! And others–are you listening Clayton Keller

    • AZ only has 2 1sts

      • Doug has THREE


  9. @Jeff

    I only wish , as per Tavares accepting a trade
    Wishful thinking at best

    @ Pengy

    I am so happy U R HAPPY with Dubas in Pittsburg
    I know I am happy , he is NO Longer in Toronto

  10. williew

    My apologies…I thought MM was Mitch Marner.

    A buyout of Murray would be better than attaching a 1st round pick to trade him. A $4M cap savings this year and $2M against the cap the following year.

    Muzzin is likely LTIR to end his career.