NHL Rumors and News: Galchenyuk arrested, Matthews unsigned, Islanders shopping

Even though NHL free agency news has died down over the last week, it doesn’t mean there haven’t been some wild things going on across the league. Whether you are into rumors, exciting trade proposals, or want to know if your favorite player still has a contract, here’s a breakdown of some interesting NHL news heading into the weekend.

Alex Galchenyuk may no longer have a future in the NHL

On Thursday, breaking news came out of Arizona when the Coyotes announced that they had placed newly acquired Alex Galchenyuk on waivers. Ultimately, the team will terminate his contract 12 days after bringing him back to the desert. Unfortunately, more serious news broke in the afternoon that on July 9, Scottsdale Police arrested the 29-year-old. 

The Coyotes already have many press relations issues, including a recent vote to end a future arena project in the area, leading the team to face the harsh reality it might relocate. Even though the franchise is trying to build a contender, the headaches outside of the arena continue to tarnish the team’s image in the hockey community. 

Depending on the severity of the charges against Galchenyuk, it may be a long time before we see him skate in NHL again if he ever makes it back. As a former third-overall pick (2012), the one-time 30-goal scorer has struggled to produce since 2019, suiting up with several teams like the Coyotes, Pittsburgh Penguins, Minnesota Wild, Ottawa Senators, and Toronto Maple Leafs. 

Toronto Maple Leafs still need to extend Auston Matthews, and the clock is ticking

Mar 25, 2019; Toronto, Ontario, CAN; Toronto Maple Leafs center Auston Matthews (34) controls a puck as Florida Panthers center Aleksander Barkov (16) defends during the second period at the Scotiabank Arena. Mandatory Credit: Nick Turchiaro-USA TODAY Sports

The Toronto Maple Leafs have been one of the busiest teams in the NHL offseason, signing a boatload of players to make the club tougher to play against. Ultimately, sandpaper skaters like Ryan Reaves and Max Domi will make many opponents second-guess a bone-crunching hit on superstars like Auston Matthews or Mitch Marner. 

However, the Maple Leafs are now $8 million over the salary cap with all these additions, leaving many across the hockey community wondering how they plan on locking up the former Hart Trophy winner Matthews. Ultimately, the two-time Rocket Richard winner is heading into the final year of his current contract, which pays him just $11.6 million. Considering his success in the regular season, rumors say he wants $14 or $15 million on his next deal.

Surprisingly, that’s more money than Connor McDavid makes, a player Matthews is often compared to as the game’s best player. However, McDavid put any debates to bed last year with 153 points. Sadly, these comparisons have backed the Maple Leafs into a corner since they don’t have the money to keep their stars on the payroll. 

Overall, Toronto is one of the toughest hockey markets in the world, and until Matthews signs a new contract that makes him happy and keeps the team competitive, his name will be on the front page every day. Ultimately, the sooner this deal gets done, the new agreement will eliminate any further distractions heading into training camp. 

The New York Islanders are browsing for another scoring forward

Last week the Ottawa Senators traded Alex DeBrincat to the Detroit Red Wings in a package some felt didn’t reward the franchise for they gave up to acquire him the previous summer. Although the New York Islanders were interested in acquiring DeBrincat, they didn’t land him and now find themselves as a talking point in the rumor mill. 

However, now that the dust has settled on one of the most talked about trades this summer, the Islanders are still looking to exchange players and seem to have their eyes on the Boston Bruins. Ultimately, some writers began to think that the team could acquire Jake DeBrusk, hoping to take advantage of the Bruins’ limited cap space and need for a centerman.

Considering Boston is still waiting for Patrice Bergeron and David Krejčì to decide whether or not they are coming back, the Bruins could end up a few veteran centers short heading into next season. However, opponents who want a player like DeBrusk, who has one year left on his current deal and can score 20 goals, could make a pitch that general manager Don Sweeny can’t refuse. 

Although most Islanders and Bruins talk is just gossip, New York is open for business and wants to tinker with their current lineup. Even if they don’t strike a deal with their northeast rival, it wouldn’t surprise anyone if they find another dance partner before opening night.