NHL Morning Coffee Headlines – October 26, 2022

NHL Morning Coffee Headlines – October 26, 2022

Recaps of Tuesday’s games including the Golden Knight’s Phil Kessel setting the league’s Ironman record and the Wild’s Marc-Andre Fleury reaching a goaltending milestone, plus the latest on the Canadiens’ Carey Price and more in today’s NHL Morning Coffee Headlines

GAME RECAPS

NHL.COM: Phil Kessel set the NHL’s Ironman record by playing his 990th consecutive game and scored his 400th career goal as the Vegas Golden Knights defeated the San Jose Sharks 4-2. Shea Theodore had a goal and an assist while Adin Hill made 29 saves for the win as the Golden Knights improved their record to 6-2-0 while the Sharks drop to 2-7-0.

Vegas Golden Knights winger Phil Kessel (NHL Images).

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Congratulations to Kessel on setting a league record for consecutive games and reaching the 400-goal milestone.

Marc-Andre Fleury made 26 saves to backstop the Minnesota Wild over the Montreal Canadiens 3-1. It was Fleury’s 944th career game, moving him past Curtis Joseph into sixth place on the all-time games-played list for NHL goaltenders. Joel Eriksson Ek scored twice for the Wild as their record improves to 2-3-1 while the Canadiens fall to 3-4-0.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Habs winger Cole Caufield tallied his fifth goal in seven games.

New Jersey Devils winger Jesper Bratt scored twice and collected an assist as his club defeated the Detroit Red Wings 6-2, handing the latter their first regulation loss of the season. Jack Hughes, Dougie Hamilton and Ryan Graves each had two points for the Devils (4-3-0) while Dylan Larkin and Dominik Kubalik replied for the Red Wings (3-1-2).

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Devils winger Ondrej Palat missed this game with a lower-body injury and is considered day-to-day.

Colorado Avalanche goalie Alexandar Georgiev kicked out 44 shots against his former club in a 3-2 win over the New York Rangers. Mikko Rantanen and Evan Rodrigues scored in the shootout as the Avs record moves up to 4-2-1. Adam Fox scored for the Rangers (3-2-2) in the third period to send the game into overtime and the shootout.

The Boston Bruins got goals from David Pastrnak, Taylor Hall and Patrice Bergeron to down the Dallas Stars 3-1. Linus Ullmark made 30 saves as the Bruins improve to 6-1-0 while the Stars fall to 4-2-1.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Stars defenseman Miro Heiskanen missed this game with an undisclosed injury and is listed as day-to-day. Bruins defenseman Brandon Carlo returned to action after missing four games with a concussion.

Calgary Flames center Nazem Kadri scored twice and added an assist while Jacob Markstrom stopped 32 shots in a 4-1 victory over the Pittsburgh Penguins. Jonathan Huberdeau also scored for the Flames (5-1-0) while Evgeni Malkin replied for the Penguins (4-2-1).

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Penguins winger Jake Guentzel missed his third straight game with an upper-body injury while Jason Zucker is with a suspected right-hip injury suffered during their loss to the Edmonton Oilers on Oct. 24.

Jonathan Quick made 23 saves while Gabriel Vilardi had a goal and an assist as the Los Angeles Kings doubled up the Tampa Bay Lightning 4-2 to improve their record to 4-4-0. The Lightning (3-4-0) got goals from Nikita Kucherov and Brandon Hagel.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: The Lightning appear to be feeling the effects of a long 2021-22 season and a shortened offseason after their third straight trip to the Stanley Cup Final.

Patrick Kane tallied his first goal of the season and added an assist as the Chicago Blackhawks upset the Florida Panthers 4-2. Alex Stalock stopped 29 shots for the 4-2-0 Blackhawks. Matthew Tkachuk was one of the goal scorers for the Panthers (4-2-1).

The Seattle Kraken improved their record to 3-3-2 by downing the Buffalo Sabres 5-1. Daniel Sprong had a goal and two assists while Martin Jones made 15 saves for the win. The Sabres’ Rasmus Dahlin saw his record-setting, season-opening goal streak for defenseman end at five games while his club’s record drops to 4-2-0.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Kraken goaltender Philipp Grubauer missed this game as he was placed on injured reserve with a lower-body injury.

Three-point performances by Shayne Gostibehere (two goals, one assist) and Clayton Keller (three assists) powered the Arizona Coyotes (2-4-0) over the Columbus Blue Jackets 6-3, dropping the latter’s record to 3-5-0.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Blue Jackets winger Patrik Laine was held scoreless as he returned from injured reserve. Earlier in the day, the Jackets announced forward Justin Danforth will be sidelined for six months after undergoing surgery to repair a torn labrum.

HEADLINES

THE ATHLETIC: Canadiens goaltender Carey Price revealed his battle with alcoholism pushed him to seek help through the NHL/NHLPA Player Assistance Program last fall.

The 35-year-old said it was the combination of coming so close to his goal of winning the Stanley Cup in 2021, followed by knee surgery and the realization that he’s in the latter stages of his career. “I was not a happy person, I wasn’t being a good father. I was drinking a lot,” he said.

Price also admitted the pressure to perform game in and game out was not easy to handle and became a weight on his mind.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Price isn’t ready to retire and continues to explore treatment for his injured knee. What’s most important is his life and health beyond the rink. He recognized he had a problem and sought treatment voluntarily. Best wishes to Price in his ongoing sobriety.

DAILY FACEOFF: The Toronto Maple Leafs placed Jake Muzzin on long-term injury reserve due to a neck injury. It provides the Leafs with an additional $5.625 million of cap relief.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: We don’t know how long Muzzin will be sidelined. If he’s out for the season they could use it to bolster their roster. If he’s not, they’ll have to ensure they’re cap compliant when he returns to action.

PHILLY HOCKEY NOW: Flyers winger James van Riemsdyk will undergo surgery on Friday to repair a fractured finger.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: A tough break (no pun intended) for van Riemsdyk, who was off to a good start with five points in his first six games of this season.

THE ATHLETIC: The St. Louis Blues placed forward Pavel Buchnevich on injured reserve with a lower-body injury.










NHL Rumor Mill – September 8, 2022

NHL Rumor Mill – September 8, 2022

The Penguins may have received an offer from the Flyers for Jason Zucker earlier this summer, the Canadiens might not be done making moves, and an update on Jake Virtanen in today’s NHL Rumor Mill.

WAS ZUCKER NEARLY TRADED TO THE FLYERS?

PITTSBURGH HOCKEY NOW: Dave Molinari reports a league source claims the Penguins got a trade offer for Jason Zucker this summer. The move would’ve allowed them to shed the 30-year-old’s $5.5 million average annual value from their salary-cap payroll for the coming season.

Pittsburgh Penguins winger Jason Zucker (NHL Images).

The trade proposal reportedly came from a Metropolitan Division rival. It would’ve involved packaging Zucker with a first-round draft pick for “well, basically nothing” in return.

Penguins general manager Ron Hextall is believed to have rejected the offer because he didn’t want to part with a first-rounder. The Penguins also aren’t prepared to give up on the oft-injured Zucker as a significant contributor.

Molinari indicates Hextall declined to respond to a request to confirm or dispute the information.

PHILLY HOCKEY NOW: Sam Carchidi speculates the Flyers could be the team that had the interest in Zucker. He points out that general manager Chuck Fletcher is very familiar with the winger going back to their days with the Minnesota Wild. The first-rounder they would’ve gotten in the deal is much-needed.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: I wonder when that pitch might’ve been made. Perhaps it would’ve been leading up to the opening round of the 2022 NHL Draft in July when the Penguins would’ve been looking to shed salary after re-signing Kris Letang and Evgeni Malkin.

THE LATEST ON THE CANADIENS

MONTREAL HOCKEY NOW: Jimmy Murphy reports Canadiens GM Kent Hughes could turn to the trade market to help his club gain more salary-cap flexibility for the coming season. He acknowledged there hasn’t been much trade activity of late but could turn to waivers or “different things that we have forthcoming.”

It’s rumored the Canadiens were looking to make a cost-cutting trade before officially announcing Kirby Dach’s new contract. “We’ll revisit and we’re comfortable we can conclude a deal,” said Hughes. He indicated if they could’ve done another transaction they might not have had to go into offseason long-term injury reserve (LTIR), giving them more flexibility during the season.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Hughes also observed that he’s continuing to work the phones and remains confident that something could get done. Murphy noted that the Habs GM was looking to move some salary for a defenseman or a package of draft picks and prospects.

While the Canadiens placed Carey Price and his $10.5 million cap hit on LTIR, Murphy indicates their limited cap wiggle room could hamper efforts to make in-season moves. Hughes could attempt to shed salary with a trade leading up to the start of the season next month.

The Canadiens GM could deal from his depth at forward. Recent rumors claim Mike Hoffman, Christian Dvorak and Joel Armia have been mentioned as trade candidates.

TVA SPORTS: cited ESPN’s Kevin Weekes yesterday saying the Canadiens are talking contract with Jake Allen. The 32-year-old goaltender is slated to become an unrestricted free agent next summer. The goal of those discussions is to reach an agreement for more than one year.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: That could add more fuel to the fire over Price’s long-term future. If his career is over, the Habs will want some veteran stability between the pipes.

UPDATE ON VIRTANEN

OILERS NATION: Zach Laing cites Vancouver Canucks insider Rick Dhaliwal claiming the Edmonton Oilers are among several teams believed to have an interest in Jake Virtanen, who spent last season in the KHL.

Virtanen, 26, played six seasons with the Canucks until 2021 but was placed on leave by the club in May 2021 after the right winger become the subject of a sexual assault investigation. His contract was bought out later that year. He was charged in January with one count of sexual assault but was found not guilty by a jury in July.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: The Oilers might no longer be among those interested clubs. They recently signed Justin Bailey to a professional tryout offer.










NHL Morning Coffee Headlines – August 7, 2022

NHL Morning Coffee Headlines – August 7, 2022

Jason Zucker hopes to rebound in 2022-23, the chair of Hockey Canada’s board of directors steps down, Lawson Crouse and the Coyotes make their arbitration filings, and more in today’s NHL morning coffee headlines.

NHL.COM: Jessi Pierce recently reported that Pittsburgh Penguins winger Jason Zucker is feeling better and is optimistic about the coming season. He’s hoping to rebound from an injury-shortened 2021-22 campaign that saw him play in just 41 games.

Pittsburgh Penguins winger Jason Zucker (NHL Images).

Zucker, 30, is currently playing in Da Beauty League, a 4-on-4 summer hockey league for professional and college players from Minnesota. He’s also feeling positive about the Penguins’ chance in 2022-23 in part because they kept most of their roster core intact during the offseason. That included re-signing Evgeni Malkin and Kris Letang.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: A healthy Zucker could help the Penguins’ chances in the coming season. A four-time 20-plus goal scorer earlier in his career with the Minnesota Wild, he’s been plagued by injuries over the past three seasons.

SPORTSNET: Michael Brind’Amour will be stepping down as the chair of Hockey Canada’s Board of Directors. This move comes as the organization has been battered in recent weeks by accusations of sexual assault involving players from the 2003 and 2018 World Junior teams.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Brind’Amour’s resignation may not be the last for the scandal-plagued organization. For those who are wondering, he is not related to Carolina Hurricanes coach Rod Brind’Amour.

SPORTSNET: Elliotte Friedman reports the Arizona Coyotes and Lawson Crouse made their arbitration filings yesterday. Crouse seeks $4 million for 2022-23 while the Coyotes are looking for $2.5 million. The hearing is slated for Monday, Aug. 8.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Crouse, 25, earned an annual cap hit of $1.55 million on his previous contract. He’s coming off a career-best 20-goal, 34-point performance.

EDMONTON JOURNAL: The Oilers signed forward Tyler Benson to a one-year, two-way contract worth $750K at the NHL level.

THE NEWS & OBSERVER: The Carolina Hurricanes avoided salary arbitration with defenseman Maxime Lajoie as the two sides agreed to a one-year, two-way deal worth $750K.

MLIVE.COM: The Detroit Red Wings will honor their 1997 and 1998 Stanley Cup championships teams during separate ceremonies early in the coming season. The 1997 team will be recognized in a pregame ceremony on Nov. 3 against the Washington Capitals while the 1998 club will be honored prior to Nov. 5 game against the New York Islanders.










NHL Rumor Mill – June 15, 2022

NHL Rumor Mill – June 15, 2022

A look at some potential contract buyout candidates in today’s NHL rumor mill.

KASSIAN, MURRAY TOP DAILY FACEOFF’S BUYOUT CANDIDATES LIST

DAILY FACEOFF: Edmonton Oilers winger Zack Kassian and Ottawa Senators goaltender Matt Murray topped Frank Seravalli’s list of this offseason’s potential contract buyout candidates. The first contract buyout window is from July 1 – 12.

Kassian has two seasons remaining on his contract with an annual average value of $3.2 million. Murray also has two seasons remaining with a $6.25 million AAV.

Ottawa Senators goaltender Matt Murray (NHL Images).

SPECTOR’S NOTE: I agree with Seravalli that Kassian could be bought out as he could prove difficult to move this summer via trade. The Senators, however, are reportedly willing to carry three goaltenders (including Murray) into next season.

That’s understandable given Murray’s cap hit. While the Sens have the cap space to absorb the two-thirds’ buyout for four seasons, that’s a long time to carry dead cap space, especially the $2.5 million per season over the final two years.

San Jose Sharks defenseman Marc-Edouard Vlasic, St. Louis Blues rearguard Marco Scandella and Vancouver Canucks winger Jason Dickinson fill spots three, four and five on Seravalli’s list. Vlasic has four more years at $7 million AAV left on his contract, Scandella has two more seasons at $3.275 million annually, and Dickinson has two more with an AAV of $2.65 million.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Vlasic’s buyout will sit on the Sharks’ books for eight years, with years three and four biting deeply into their cap space. Nevertheless, The Athletic’s Corey Masisak said in a recent mailbag segment that he considered a Vlasic buyout more likely than trading a blueliner like Brent Burns or Erik Karlsson. As Seravalli observed, carrying the full $7 million of the fading Vlasic’s contract for four more years would be worse than the buyout cost.

I see Scandella and Dickinson as buyout candidates if their respective teams can’t find anyone to trade their contracts off their hands in the trade market.

Nashville Predators defenseman Philippe Myers, Chicago Blackhawks forward Tyler Johnson and Pittsburgh Penguins winger Jason Zucker are six, seven and eight respectively on the list. Myers has a year remaining on his deal with an AAV of $2.55 million. Johnson has two more seasons at $5 million annually remaining while Zucker has a year left at $5 million.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Myers appears a likely buyout candidate. As Seravalli points out, the blueliner is 25 so his buyout is one-third the remaining value instead of two-thirds. Because his contract is also backloaded, the Predators would get a cap credit of over $616K for this season and be charged only $633K the following season. Seravalli suggests that could make Myers’s contract enticing in the trade market for cap-strapped clubs.

I think the rebuilding Blackhawks can afford to carry Johnson’s contract for at least one more season. The Penguins could also ride out the remaining year of Zucker’s deal if they can fit new contracts for Kris Letang and Evgeni Malkin into their current cap space. They could also retain up to half his cap hit in a trade or attempt to move him for another player with a comparable contract.

New York Rangers defenseman Patrik Nemeth and Boston Bruins winger Nick Foligno round out the top 10. Nemeth has two more years left with an AAV of $2.5 million while Foligno has one season remaining at $3.8 million.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: The Rangers could attempt to trade Nemeth but the way his contract is structured could make a buyout likely. The cap hit is $1 million for each season except for the second year, where they won’t be charged anything. As for Foligno, Boston Hockey Now’s Joe Haggerty reports the Bruins aren’t leaning that way.










NHL Rumor Mill – June 4, 2022

NHL Rumor Mill – June 4, 2022

The latest roundup of Penguins speculation plus a look at potential trade candidates on the Panthers and Coyotes in today’s NHL rumor mill.

LATEST ON THE PENGUINS

PITTSBURGH HOCKEY NOW: Dan Kingerski predicts the Penguins and pending free agent center Evgeni Malkin could meet “more than halfway” on a new contract that keeps him in Pittsburgh for two seasons at $7 million annually.

Pittsburgh Penguins winger Jason Zucker (NHL Images).

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Seems reasonable, though Malkin would probably prefer three years to finish his career when teammate Sidney Crosby’s contract expires in 2024-25.

However, he expects UFA defenseman Kris Letang will get a four-year deal worth an annual average value of $9 million somewhere else.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Letang has said he wants to finish his career in Pittsburgh with Crosby and Malkin. If he’s seeking a big-money raise, however, this season will have been his last in a Penguins jersey.

Kingerski expects restricted free agent winger Kaspari Kapanen will be shopped, perhaps to add a bit of muscle to the Penguins’ lineup. He also believes they’ll let backup goalie Casey DeSmith depart via free agency and attempt to find a reliable backup. “No chance in hell it’s Marc-Andre Fleury,” said Kingerski. “None.”

SPECTOR’S NOTE: I’ll be surprised if Kapanen or DeSmith return with the Penguins next season. They could decide not to qualify Kapanen’s rights if they can’t find anyone willing to acquire him via trade. Fleury returning to Pittsburgh to finish his career would be a great story but I don’t think we’re going to see it happen if general manager Ron Hextall has faith in Tristan Jarry as their starter.

Finding a suitable backup goalie won’t be easy. Kingerski’s colleague Dave Molinari points out that most of this summer’s cut-rate free agent netminders likely won’t be winning a Stanley Cup anytime soon. They include Louis Domingue, Nashville’s David Rittich and Buffalos’ Malcolm Subban.

Kingerski also looked at possible free-agent targets on right wing. He listed Vegas’ Reilly Smith, Toronto’s Ilya Mikheyev, Carolina’s Nino Niederreiter and Colorado’s Valeri Nichushkin but suggests current Penguin Rickard Rakell would be a better fit.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: A trade-deadline acquisition, Rakell fit in well with the Penguins and has expressed a willingness to return. Whether they can reach common ground on a deal remains to be seen. Much will depend on what happens with Malkin and Letang.

PITTSBURGH POST-GAZETTE: Matt Vensel looked at the Penguins’ potential options for Jason Zucker. The 30-year-old winger has a year remaining on his contract worth $5.5 million and has battled injuries in recent years.

The Penguins could attempt to move Zucker in a cost-cutting deal but his contract would be considered a negative trade asset around the league unless they throw in a prospect or draft pick. They could also try to swap him for a comparable veteran forward and hope the latter will be a better fit in Pittsburgh.

A contract buyout could be another option as it would shave $3.5 million from their books for next season. However, they could be prevented from doing so if he’s still considered injured when the buyout period rolls around.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Another option is that Hextall sticks with Zucker and considers other cost-cutting options. There’s been speculation suggesting he could shed some salary by shopping a defenseman such as John Marino or Marcus Pettersson.

POTENTIAL TRADE CANDIDATES AMONG THE PANTHERS AND COYOTES

FLORIDA HOCKEY NOW: George Richards recently looked at potential cost-cutting trade candidates for the Florida Panthers this summer.

He noted there was some social media buzz suggesting the Panthers move Sergei Bobrovsky. However, the 32-year-old goaltender’s $10 million annual cap hit and full no-movement clause for the next two seasons make him a tough trade.

Players who could be easier to move include Patric Hornqvist (one season remaining at $5.3 million), Sam Bennett (two seasons at $4.4 million per) and Radko Gudas (one season, $2.5 million).

SPECTOR’S NOTE: I’ve learned in this business not to dismiss out of hand the possibility of a high-salaried veteran with full no-trade protection getting traded. Yes, Bobrovsky could be shopped this summer. However, finding a trade partner willing to take on his full cap hit for the next four years when the salary cap is only rising by $1 million this summer makes him difficult to move.

They could find some takers for Hornqvist or Gudas but Bennett would be the more enticing trade candidate. The 25-year-old is a versatile two-way forward coming off a career-best 28-goal, 49-point performance with a reputation for elevating his game in the postseason.

Those factors would also make Panthers GM Bill Zito reluctant to part with Bennett. He might not have much choice if he’s pressed to free up cap room for next season.

ARIZONA SPORTS: Sam Graveline recently looked at some possible trade chips for the rebuilding Coyotes.

Topping the list is defenseman Jakob Chychrun, who’s been the subject of trade speculation for most of this season. GM Bill Armstrong could seek a return of multiple draft picks and a top prospect.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Armstrong reportedly set a high asking price for Chychrun during this season. He’s not expected to lower it during this offseason.

Defenseman Shayne Gostisbehere’s trade value may have improved following his 14-goal, 51-point performance this season. He’s set to become a UFA next summer. Restricted free agent forward Lawson Crouse could also have some trade value after reaching 20 goals this season.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Gostisbehere’s solid bounce-back performance was among the few bright spots for the offensively anemic Coyotes this season. Contenders seeking a puck-moving blueliner could come calling. Unless Crouse’s contract demands are unreasonable I expect the Coyotes will re-sign him.










NHL Rumor Mill – May 20, 2022

NHL Rumor Mill – May 20, 2022

John Klingberg’s hope to re-sign with the Stars plus some recent Penguins speculation in today’s NHL rumor roundup.

WILL KLINGBERG & THE STARS REACH AN AGREEMENT ON AN EXTENSION?

THE DALLAS MORNING NEWS: Matthew DeFranks reported John Klingberg and Stars general manager Jim Nill have left the door open for his return with the club. The 29-year-old defenseman is slated to become an unrestricted free agent this summer.

Dallas Stars defenseman John Klingberg (NHL Images).

On Tuesday, Klingberg said he’s always wanted to stay in Dallas and his side is trying to come up with ways to get it done. Nill said both sides know where they sit and he intends to remain in touch.

DeFranks observed both sides have been at an impasse this season, prompting Klingberg to publicly express his frustration in January and sparking trade speculation. The Stars are burdened by expensive, long-term contracts for aging stars Jamie Benn and Tyler Seguin. They don’t want to get locked into another deal with a long term and a high cap hit. Klingberg, however, seeks the security of a long-term deal.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Klingberg turns 30 this summer, meaning the Stars probably aren’t interested in anything over four years. Cap Friendly indicates they also have almost $18 million tied up in three defensemen in Miro Heiskanen, Esa Lindell and Ryan Suter.

Last November, Sportsnet’s Jeff Marek reported Klingberg was believed to be seeking between $7.75 million and $8.5 million. Unless he’s willing to accept a four-year deal worth around $6 million per season, he’ll likely hit the open market on July 13.

The Stars also have other contracts to sort out. Goaltender Jake Oettinger and winger Jason Robertson are due for significant raises coming off their entry-level deals. Winger Denis Gurianov is a restricted free agent with arbitration rights. They’ll also need a reliable backup for Oettinger with Braden Holtby and Scott Wedgewood due for UFA status this summer.

LATEST ON THE PENGUINS

TRIBLIVE.COM: Chris Adamski wondered if the Pittsburgh Penguins will bring back Kaspari Kapanen after he struggled throughout this season. The 25-year-old winger is slated to become a restricted free agent this summer with arbitration rights.

Adamski also reports Rickard Rakell would be interested in returning with the Penguins. The 29-year-old winger is due to become a UFA in July. He didn’t wow anyone statistically during his brief period with the Penguins following a late-season trade from the Anaheim Ducks. However, he showed enough to suggest he could be a top-six winger capable of establishing chemistry with Sidney Crosby or Evgeni Malkin.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Kapanen was a speedy, promising (if inconsistent) winger during his two full seasons with the Toronto Maple Leafs. He showed some potential in 2020-21 with 30 points in 40 games but managed just 32 points in 79 games this season. The Penguins could try to trade him as he doesn’t seem a good fit in head coach Mike Sullivan’s system.

The Penguins’ management could have an interest in bringing back Rakell. However, that’s going to depend upon what he’s seeking on his next contract and what happens with franchise stars Malkin and Kris Letang, who are also eligible for UFA status this summer.

PITTSBURGH HOCKEY NOW: Dan Kingerski looked at several Penguins who could get shopped this summer if there’s a need to shed salary for other moves or signings. Jason Zucker, Marcus Pettersson and Mike Matheson were among the most notable given their salaries. John Marino, Brian Dumoulin, Teddy Blueger and Brock McGinn were also listed.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Zucker, Pettersson and Matheson have frequently surfaced in the Penguins’ rumor mill as cost-cutting candidates. Zucker’s injury history and $5.5 million cap hit will make him tough to move. Pettersson’s inconsistent play and $4.025 million cap hit are also problematic. Matheson’s play improved this season but the four years at $4.875 million per season could be a sticking point.

Injuries have also become an issue for Dumoulin. Marino was seen as a promising top-four defenseman but his stock seemed to tumble this season. Blueger and McGinn each earn less than $3 million.