Notable NHL Free-Agent Signings – July 1, 2018

Notable NHL Free-Agent Signings – July 1, 2018

The NHL free-agent market opens today at noon ET. Here’s a list of today’s notable signings, which will be updated throughout the day. 

Toronto Maple Leafs signed center John Tavares to a seven-year, $77-million contract

Toronto Maple Leafs sign John Tavares to a seven-year contract (Photo via NHL Images)

Philadelphia Flyers reportedly signed left wing James van Riemsdyk to a five-year, $35-million contract. 

Tampa Bay Lightning re-signed defenseman Ryan McDonagh to a seven-year contract extension worth $6.75 million per season.

Arizona Coyotes officially announced the signing of defenseman Oliver Ekman-Larsson to an eight-year contract extension worth $8.25 million AAV. They also re-signed defenseman Niklas Hjalmarsson to a two-year contract extension worth $5 million AAV, and signed free-agent winger Michael Grabner to a three-year deal worth $3.35 million per season. 

Vegas Golden Knights will sign center Paul Stastny to a three-year contract. The annual average value is $6.5 million. They’ve also signed defenseman Nick Holden to a two-year deal worth $2.2 million annually. 

Pittsburgh Penguins will reportedly sign defenseman Jack Johnson to a five-year, $16.25-million contract. They’ve also signed Matt Cullen to a one-year, $650K contract

St. Louis Blues expected to sign winger David Perron to a four-year deal worth $4 million per season. The Blues have also signed center Tyler Bozak to a three-year contract with an AAV of $5 million and goaltender Chad Johnson to a one-year, $1.75-million deal. 

Colorado Avalanche reportedly close to signing defenseman Ian Cole to a three-year contact worth an annual cap hit of $4.25 million.

Chicago Blackhawks sign goaltender Cam Ward to a one-year, $3-million contract with a full no-movement clause. They’ve also signed winger Chris Kunitz to a one-year, $1-million contract and defenseman Brandon Manning to a two-year deal. 

Boston Bruins expected to sign goaltender Jaroslav Halak to a two-year contract worth $2.75 million annually. They also signed winger Joakim Nordstrom to a two-year, $2 million deal and defenseman John Moore to a five-year contract worth an AAV of $2.75 million.

Columbus Blue Jackets sign center Riley Nash to a three-year contract worth $2.75-million per season. 

Buffalo Sabres will reportedly sign goaltender Carter Hutton to a three-year, $8.25-million contract.

New York Islanders have an agreement in place to bring back defenseman Thomas Hickey on a four-year deal worth an AAV of $2.5 million. They also signed forward Leo Komarov to a four-year, $12-million contract.

Detroit Red Wings expected to sign goaltender Jonathan Bernier to a three-year deal worth around $3 million annually and forward Thomas Vanek to a one-year, $3-million contract. 

Edmonton Oilers will sign forward Kyle Brodziak to a two-year deal with an AAV of around $1 million and forward Tobias Rieder to a one-year, $2-million contract.  

Dallas Stars expected to sign forward Blake Comeau to a three-year deal worth $2.4 million per season. They’ve also re-signed winger Valeri Nichushkin to a two-year deal worth $2.95-million annually. Roman Polak is reportedly heading to the Stars on a one-year contract worth $1.3 million.

Vancouver Canucks are expected to sign center Jay Beagle to a four-year contract worth $3 million annually and forward Antoine Roussel to a four-year deal worth $3.25 million per season. 

Calgary Flames expected to sign center Derek Ryan to a three-year deal worth an AAV of $3.125 million and center Austin Czarnik to a two-year deal worth $1.25-million annually. 

Carolina Hurricanes sign goaltender Petr Mrazek to a one-year deal worth $1.5 million. 

Montreal Canadiens are expected to announced the signing of center Tomas Plekanec to a one-year deal worth a base salary of $2.25 million plus bonuses. 

Minnesota Wild will reportedly sign defenseman Greg Pateryn to a three-year contract and signed goaltender Andrew Hammond. 


NHL Rumor Mill Update – June 30, 2018

NHL Rumor Mill Update – June 30, 2018

With the NHL free-agent market opening on July 1, here’s the latest updates on several notable pending UFAs.

TSN: Darren Dreger reports defenseman Mike Green is expected to re-sign with the Detroit Red Wings. It’s believed to be a two-year deal. Bob McKenzie reports it’s worth an annual average value of $5.373 million. The Wings are also expected to sign goaltender Jonathan Bernier. Former Wings forward Thomas Vanek is considering a return to Detroit.

Mike Green will reportedly re-sign a two-year deal with the Detroit Red Wings (Photo via NHL Images)

SPECTOR’S NOTE: The UFA market for quality defensemen will be even thinner with Green gone. As for Bernier, Sportsnet’s John Shannon reports his new contract will be for three years, while The Athletic’s Craig Custance said it’ll be worth an AAV of $3 million. 

The Montreal Canadiens have placed recently acquired goaltender Steve Mason on unconditional waivers for the purpose of a contract buyout. The Habs brought in Mason, along with forward Joel Armia, along with a seventh-round pick in 2019 and a fourth-round pick in 2020, from the Winnipeg Jets in exchange for minor league blueliner Simon Bourque.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: The buyout will count as $1.366 million annually through 2019-20 against the Habs cap, leaving them with a projected $17.2 million in salary-cap space. 

THE ATHLETIC’s Michael Russo reports the Minnesota Wild have placed forward Tyler Ennis on unconditional waivers for buyout purposes. The Wild will gain an additional $2.43 million in cap space for 2018-19.

TSN: Frank Seravalli reports the Toronto Maple Leafs and Calgary Flames are among the clubs pursuing center Derek Ryan. 

THE ATHLETIC’s Craig Custance reports the Vancouver Canucks, Calgary Flames, Edmonton Oilers, Florida Panthers, Montreal Canadiens and New York Rangers have been connected to former LA Kings winger Tobias Rieder. Sportsnet 650’s Rick Dhaliwal reports Rieder’s closing in on a deal but it’s not expected to be with the Canucks. 

SPORTSNET 650’s Rick Dhaliwal reports the Vancouver Canucks are considered the front-runners for former Washington Capitals center Jay Beagle. Sources say his new contract could be for three years with an AAV of $2.5 million. The Canucks were also in contact with former NY Islanders defenseman Calvin de Haan. 


NHL Rumor Mill (Part 2) – June 20, 2018

NHL Rumor Mill (Part 2) – June 20, 2018

Latest on the Sharks and Canucks plus updates on Ryan O’Reilly and Cam Talbot in your NHL rumor mill.


THE MERCURY NEWS: Paul Gackle reports the San Jose Sharks acquisition of winger Mike Hoffman from the Ottawa Senators and subsequently flipping him to the Florida Panthers enabled general manager Doug Wilson to clear salary-cap space to pursue a top-six forward as well as restock their cupboard with draft picks. They’ve been considered potential suitors for pending unrestricted free agents John Tavares and Ilya Kovalchuk. Wilson also left open the possibility of acquiring a scorer via trade.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Wilson isn’t done, that’s for sure. He’ll likely keep an ear open in the trade market but I think Tavares and Kovalchuk are his main targets. I wouldn’t rule out the possibility of acquiring Tavares’ rights if the Islanders are unable to re-sign him by next week. 

Teams remain interested in Ryan O’Reilly but the Buffalo Sabres aren’t keen to move him (Photo via NHL Images)


THE BUFFALO NEWS: Mike Harrington reports Sabres GM Jason Botterill isn’t surprised by the interest of other clubs in Ryan O’Reilly, noting the center is among his team’s better players. While Botterill is getting plenty of calls, Harrington said he’s not shopping O’Reilly or any other player.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: The O’Reilly trade chatter has subsided a little in recent days. Doesn’t mean he won’t get dealt but I think Botterill’s asking price could be far more than interested parties are willing to pay. Remember, the Sabres GM isn’t under pressure to move his best two-way forward. O’Reilly under contract through 2022-23 so he can afford to be patient. 


EDMONTON JOURNAL: Jim Matheson reports the Oilers have yet to reach out to goaltender Cam Talbot regarding a contract extension, but that doesn’t mean they’re trading him. While they recently signed former KHL goalie Mikko Koskinen to a one-year deal, he’s not a replacement for Talbot. Matheson suspects Oilers GM Peter Chiarelli might prefer waiting to see how Talbot performs in the first half of 2018-19 before opening contract discussions. 

SPECTOR’S NOTE: There’s no goaltender in this summer’s UFA market who’s a suitable replacement for Talbot and no trade chatter about any notable netminders. Sure, it’s possible Chiarelli’s working on a trade that could land the Oilers an upgrade between the pipes, but I don’t think that’s gonna happen. They’ll stick with Talbot for next season and see how things work out. 


THE ATHLETIC: JD Burke cites a report by Sportsnet 650’s Rick Dhaliwal claiming he’s heard the Vancouver Canucks could target Washington Capitals center Jay Beagle if he hits the free-agent market on July 1. Assuming the Canucks don’t trade away one of their current centers, Burke doubts they’ll pursue Beagle. “He’s not an inherently bad player; he just doesn’t offer anything that isn’t already available to the Canucks with their current crop of players. And it’s not often a team alters its lineup significantly to accommodate a 32-year-old fourth-line centre.”