NHL Rumor Mill – April 18, 2024

by | Apr 18, 2024 | Rumors | 11 comments

What’s in store during a long offseason for the Devils, Kraken and Wild? Find out in today’s NHL Rumor Mill.


NEW JERSEY HOCKEY NOW: James Nichols looked ahead at what could be a busy offseason for Devils general manager Tom Fitzgerald.

First and foremost, Fitzgerald needs to hire a new head coach. Potential candidates could be former NHL bench bosses like Craig Berube and Todd McLellan or two-time NCAA Frozen Four champion David Carle.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: That means interim head coach Travis Green reverts to associate coach or moves on to another club.

Fitzgerald must also address his goaltending. He addressed part of the problem by acquiring Jake Allen last month at the trade deadline. The Devils GM made it clear he intends to go “big-game hunting” this summer. He could revisit his interest Calgary’s Jacob Markstrom or turn to other options like Boston’s Linus Ullmark, Nashville’s Juuse Saros or St. Louis’ Jordan Binnington.

SPECTOR’S NOTE:  Binnington seems the least likely to be available. Ullmark is the most likely candidate, followed by Markstrom and Saros.

The Devils also need to add a defenseman. Nichols suggested someone like Dallas’ Chris Tanev.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Tanev’s shutdown defensive game will make him a popular free-agent target for several teams this summer. However, his age (34) and injury history could make Fitzgerald seek other options for his blueline.

Seattle Kraken center Shane Wright (NHL Images).


THE SEATTLE TIMES: Geoff Baker believes the Kraken must improve by bringing in an elite performer. Finding one means giving up a player other teams want.

Baker believes defensemen like Vince Dunn, Will Borgen and Adam Larsson and goaltender Joey Daccord would be enticing trade chips. If the Kraken believes young center Shane Wright is a good complementary piece rather than a future star, the time to sell high is now.

Kate Shefte noted that Brandon Tanev and Jamie Oleksiak are being mentioned as trade candidates. She doesn’t see Wright getting shopped but wondered if they might offer up promising prospect Jagger Firkus.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: It’ll be interesting to see what Kraken general manager Ron Francis has in store for his club this summer. He could remain patient with his club and maybe make depth additions. Perhaps he considers a coaching change rather than a big trade. Francis has made big splashes via free agency and could go that route again. Or he could surprise us with a big trade.

I agree with Shefte regarding Wright but they could consider moving another prospect like Firkus for more immediate help. 


STARTRIBUNE.COM: La Velle E. Neal III noted the Minnesota Wild’s youth movement, bringing up promising Jesper Wallstedt and forwards Liam Ohgren and Marat Khusnutdinov late in the season. They join a core of 20-something talent that includes Kirill Kaprizov, Matt Boldy, Marco Rossi and Brock Faber.

The Wild have one more season of carrying over $14.7 million in dead cap space from buying out Zach Parise and Ryan Suter. That will give him the cap flexibility needed when those young players are ready for new contracts.

Neal also suggested the Wild move on from goaltender Filip Gustavsson and defenseman Alex Goligoski. Trading Gustavsson would make room for Wallstedt, who would benefit from being an apprentice to Marc-Andre Fleury next season. Goligoski, 39, is slated to become an unrestricted free agent this summer.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Neal’s suggestion to trade Gustavsson is interesting considering the Wild signed Fleury on Wednesday to a one-year contract extension. Maybe Wild GM Bill Guerin is looking at a Fleury-Wallstedt tandem for next season.


  1. I don’t see Seattle pulling off a huge blockbuster trade. That’s just not Francis’s style. In any event it is very rare for elite players to be traded of course. They’d have to target a very good but non elite type of player. As will numerous other teams.

  2. Nashville made the playoffs this season with Saros as their starting goaltender, can’t see the Predators starting the season without Saros in net.

    • Agreed Caper. Of all those goalies listed Ullmark is the most likely to be traded IMO.

      Going into next season NJ, Carolina and LA are the 3 teams I think could target Ullmark.

      • GG,
        I dont think Carolina will be one of the teams loking for a tender🤔

        They have Andreson signed for next season and they have 24yr old Pyotr Kochetkov who had a nice season
        G,42 GA,2.33 SV% 0.911
        I think we see him in the playoffs

        Ottawa need a Goaltender, NJ & LA

        1/ Saros, ( will cost a lot to trade for )
        2/ Ullmark,
        3/ Markstrom,
        the better of the Pen’s 2 goaltenders was 28 yr old UFA…..Alex Nedeljkovic
        who also had good numbers and could do very well….❓

  3. Re; The preds
    I think they will be out in the first round of the playoffs,
    they have $19.M in Cap space, 6 UFA & 3 RFA players But No Young Star coming up to help them out

    Saros is a good goaltender

    The d is Not that good,apart from Roman Josi
    most of the other d were mentioned in Trades all 4 of them this season or in there downward years who will all be 1 year Older soon….
    $9.M Roman Josi @ 33+
    $7.M Ryan McDonagh @ 34 +
    $2.75 Luke Schen @ 34 +

    They dont have much in Scoring after Filip Forsberg who had a great year👌

    they have 1 X 1st pick around 16 to 22…? range,
    3 X 2nd round picks
    They are and look to continue to be a middle dwelling team, unless they go for a re-build

    I dont know if 28yr old Saros will re-sign for the re-build Or they trade him at the NHL draft……..⁉️

    • And if you are going to trade him to Ottawa or New Jersey at the draft. What are you asking for in return? That 7th over all pick? I generally don’t know what a good proven 28 year old goaltender sells for.

      • Agree. I’m not for mortgaging the future for another “maybe” in nets.

        I’d much rather see Staios and his new coaching staff retain Korpisalo and focus on acquiring a proven back-up and shoring up the defensive aspect of the game, including at least two proven 4-6 D-men and 3rd/4th line Fs who know how to play a full two-way game. They can score with the best of them – they need some discipline in their 60-minute game.

      • George O, the Larsson suggestion above from Seattle seems like exactly the type of guy OTT should target for a RD IMO.

        He has a 10 team NTC and I don’t understand why Seattle would trade him, but if they were willing to for a good young player…

        Big, moves, physical, leader, practices and plays hard, borderline dirty without taking too many penalties. Perfect.

      • Sen’s could trade LD/man Chychrun for Goaltender Saros and or Ullmark…❓

        Thats the Sen’s Huge Hole on the Team
        if they dont fix goaltending its the same old as this year….🤔

        Im not sure what NJ would offer
        But Saros at 28 could fix lots of problems for both teams and he along with Ullmark will be in-demand

        Sen’s do need a 2nd pair RD/man shutdown for 2-3 years
        in the June draft picking @ #7 they need a offencive RD/man

        depending what they do with there 2nd 1st round pick if its a trade or…?
        they also need a big tough scoring RW for the top 6. they have nothing on the farm AHL coming up that can fill that roll

        GM, Steve Staios has a hugh Mess to clean up it may not all happen this year….
        i would still put Goaltending at the Top of the list….⁉️

  4. Jagger firkus. Please trade to pens. Great name.

  5. No general manager is going to trade a good goalie unless he has a better replacement.