Sunday NHL Rumor Roundup – August 13, 2023

by | Aug 13, 2023 | Rumors | 20 comments

Check out the recent speculation on Patrick Kane and Evgeny Kuznetsov as well as the latest on the Flames, Hurricanes and Jets in today’s NHL Rumor Mill

ASSOCIATED PRESS: Stephen Whyno recently listed some notable storylines to watch during the final weeks of the 2023 NHL offseason.

While Patrick Kane continues to rehab from his June 1 hip resurfacing procedure, there are rumors linking the 34-year-old free-agent winger to his hometown Buffalo Sabres. They’re a young club on the rise that could use a player with his Stanley Cup experience.

Free agent winger Patrick Kane (NHL Images).

SPECTOR’S NOTE: It was reported last month that Kane’s agent indicated his client should be ready to return to action in December. By that point, the future Hall of Famer will evaluate the clubs that are interested in him and pick the one he believes has the best chance of winning the Stanley Cup this season.

The Sabres could be one of those teams if they finally achieve their long-anticipated breakthrough as a playoff club. However, much will depend on what their needs will be by that point. Goaltending remains a big question mark as is their blueline depth despite the offseason additions of Erik Johnson and Connor Clifton.

Whyno also believes the Calgary Flames, Carolina Hurricanes and Winnipeg Jets will be worth monitoring in the weeks leading up to training camp.

Flames center Elias Lindholm is entering the final year of his contract. GM Craig Conroy has already traded Tyler Toffoli and could do the same with Lindholm if unable to re-sign the 28-year-old center.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: It’s been reported that Conroy has been in discussions with the Lindholm camp about a multi-year contract worth between $8 million and $9 million annually. Depending on the source, those talks are ongoing or they’ve gone quiet for now.

Carolina Hurricanes GM Don Waddell cited that his club’s limited cap space has made it difficult to improve his roster. He’ll continue talking to different teams and free agents. Whyno speculated he could look to move Brett Pesce or Brady Skjei to clear his blueline logjam. Both have a year remaining on their respective contracts.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Pesce has featured more prominently in trade rumors than Skjei this summer. Back in June, TSN’s Pierre LeBrun reported the Hurricanes could move the 28-year-old Pesce if they’re unable to hammer out a new contract with him. Perhaps he becomes trade bait to add another scoring forward.

The Winnipeg Jets have yet to move goaltender Connor Hellebuyck and center Mark Scheifele. Both players are slated to become unrestricted free agents next summer. Whyno doesn’t expect either player will be in Winnipeg for much longer.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: A report out of Winnipeg last month explained that the reason why Hellebuyck is still with the Jets is because the trade market for goaltenders had dried up. Meanwhile, there’s been no word about Scheifele’s status in recent weeks. Both players could start the season with the Jets and end up getting traded at some point before the March trade deadline.

Evgeny Kuznetsov is the subject of trade rumors for the second time in three years. He saw a 23-point drop in his production last season to 55 points. The 31-year-old winger is signed through 2024-25 with an average annual value of $7.8 million.

Capitals general manager Brian MacLellan indicated he had a few discussions during the draft, suggesting they might or might not carry forward into this season.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: MacLellan was reportedly in talks with the Nashville Predators regarding Kuznetsov earlier this summer but nothing came of it Predators GM Barry Trotz coached the Capitals to the Stanley Cup in 2018, during which Kuznetsov had a career-best 83 points and led the Caps in playoff scoring with 32 points.

As I’ve frequently noted, the combination of Kuznetsov’s inconsistent play in recent years and his hefty cap hit makes him difficult to move in this summer’s trade market, especially with a flattened salary cap.

It could take a dollar-for-dollar swap, the Capitals retaining up to half of his cap hit, or a three-team swap that spreads his AAV around to move Kuznetsov this season. They might have better luck next summer if his performance improves. That’s when the cap is projected to rise by at least $4 million for 2024-25.


  1. at this point, with the buyout period finished, good luck to teams who are looking to dump salary…

    I think P.Kane returns to the Rangers at a low salary + bonuses, he was their best player in the playoffs vs NJD

  2. Sheifele is probably destined to be a Bruin, but what can Boston send back? Coyle+Lysell?

    • I think Sheifele gets moved to the first contender that loses a top forward to LITR

    • Sheifele and Brossoit for Swayman + Lysell and a 6th

      • Sheifele (retain $2M) and Brossoit for Swayman + Lysell and a ’25 3rd
        Still too much salary for Boston so they have to trade Forbort.

      • No thanks Bruins will sit pat and judge the roster well into the season. Sway isn’t going anywhere and if he was the jets would be paying out their butts to get him. MS isn’t the prize in your scenario Sway is. And no disrespect but the thought that an up and coming 23 yr old elite goalie only fetches a declining first line center who is terrible in his own zone is ludicrous

      • You thinking any goalie in the nhl carry a significant trade value is ludicrous.

    • I’m not interested in having him on the club.
      Lindholm or wait until Christmas when Krejci comes back.
      This coming season is just a stop gap until next season when the real prizes come available and we have money to spend on said prizes.

      • Bruins have been so good for so long. going to be weird to see them go under .500 this season

      • I totally agree

      • Funny as per usual the Bruins are the underdogs lol yes missing Bergy will hurt but they still have a solid core Pasta Marshy Coyle DeBrusk Mcavoy Lindholm Sway. And Zacha has a chance to prove he can be an important player. It’s ridiculous to think they will be a sub .500 team

    • I think Bruins willl try to wait it out for cheaper options and ufas as they’ll have lots of money to spend after this season. They didn’t give up any of their top prospects at the deadline so can’t see them doing that now

  3. I think the Bruins are going to be average for a few years. They need to rebuild through the draft and they have traded away most of their picks in the last few years. The last thing they need is Sheifele or any other expensive veteran…

  4. Bruins or Leaf’s

    Sam Reinhart is a free agent next year , unless of course Florida signs him beforehand .
    A very valuable addition IMO..

    God for bid – Matthews , hopefully will be signed soon

  5. I really don’t understand the Buffalo GM. He wants to make the playoffs and take a step forward but yet relied on an old injury prone Anderson in net and now with unproven or AHL caliber goalies.

    If there is one team that should trade for Hellebuyck, it’s them. They need someone stable and proven in net to take the next step. They have cap space and assets to make that move easily. They likely could sign him to an extension if his demands aren’t too crazy.

    For some reason the GM just wants to roll the dice with AHL goalies or rookies instead and will wonder why they don’t make the playoffs yet again unless one of them plays much better than expected.

    • Who backstopped the most recent cup champs?

    • Paul B, Coyle is 31 and has averaged 40 ppg for his career, Marchand is 35 and won’t have Bergeron, DeBrusk has averaged 48 ppg, but did average 64 last year, and they lost Taylor Hall.

      You can say they have a solid core, but their top 6 is one of the weakest in the NHL in my opinion.

      They have JVR, Coyle, Zacha and DeBrusk listed in the top 6, that seems very weak to me.

      The saving grace is goaltending and defence. We shall see how it plays out if they do not acquire a top line center.

    • In order to get Hellebuyck Buffalo would have to trade some of their big name prospects, and it doesn’t really make sense to do that if they have decent prospects in goal. Why watch them flourish elsewhere when they can just be patient and give up nothing to have the same, and possibly a better result.

      Hellebuyck may be at the peak of his career now, but he’ll be in decline and not worth the prospects by the time Buffalo is truly ready to contend.

      Personally I like Detroit’s approach of signing promising young goaltenders or avg journeyman as you wait for your prospects to develop because in general goalies are always a gamble.

  6. The Winnipeg Jets & Buffalo

    Goaltender Connor Hellebuyck and center 30 yr old Mark Scheifele. Both players are slated to become unrestricted free agents next summer,

    I think they will both get Traded and both Test the UFA Market in July.🤔
    Boston could be intresting as they need a 1st line centre… I Can’t see them going after both

    I think they are looking at Calgarys Center Elias Lindholm who is a few years younger at 28,

    Buffalo could look at Goaltender Connor Hellebuyck…❓
    There Goaltending tandem is Very Very weak…with young 23 yr old Ukko-Pekka Luukkonen and Back up Eric Comrie
    Not sure who will be the starter hear……❓

    young 21 yr old Devon Levi is at least 2-3 + Years away…
    So Connor Hellebuyck could well be the
    Answer in Buffalo here as thats there
    Weak Area🤔

  7. That 8th year is worth something. In the ballpark of his numbers at $8.5 -$9m he would be leaving a lot on the table. Basing it on the fact he is not a $10m player in the open market Elias better consider that heavily .
    I think he resigns in Calgary.