This offseason promises to be quite an interesting one, especially when it comes to goaltenders. The market is basically going to be flooded with more goalies than teams looking for them.
NHL Rumors – Jacob Markstrom
One goalie that may not make it to market is UFA, Jacob Markstrom. On Tuesday, Vancouver’s GM, Jim Benning pretty much named him as a top priority.
“Jacob is an important guy to our group. He’s a leader, and he was our MVP,” Benning said. “We want him back and we’re going to start working on that this week.”
The Canucks GM even stated that he has begun negotiations with Markstrom’s agent. The 30 year-old net minder will serve as their number one as he mentors Thatcher Demko to eventually take over his role.
NHL Rumors – Robin Lehner
The Vegas Golden Knights are sold on Robin Lehner as their number one goalie. Reports indicate they are looking to sign the 29 year-old backstop long-term and negotiations have begun.
So instead of Lehner being a UFA on the market, it will be Marc-Andre Fleury on the trade list. Moving MAF is easier said than done when you have a 35 year-old net-minder making $7 million on the cap and a no trade clause.
NHL Rumors – Henrik Lundqvist
Over at Forever Blueshirts, I’ve written about Henrik Lundqvist hundreds of times and covered the end of his Rangers tenure as best as possible. With his return to NY for the start of school, it ended any speculation of his retirement to play one season with Frolunda in Sweden.
I had a brief email exchange with Lundqvist’s agent and asked if there was any status update. In particular, I wanted to know who’s court the proverbial ball was in. “Any decision making by either side is simply between the parties,” Don Meehan told me.
So here we are and Lundqvist is in NY. A safe assumption would be both sides getting to gather and deciding the plan. Will it be a buyout as I believe, or a trade? Retirement is still on the table but is the least likely scenario now.
When it comes to how it will end scenarios, Rick Carpiniello of the Athletic believes it will be a buyout. The first window to do so will happen in about a month.
NHL Rumors – Kris Letang
Now to finally break up the monotony of goalies, Penguins defenseman Kris Letang told teammates he expects to be traded this offseason. This is coming from Rob Rossi of the Athletic.
We did state in a recent feature, that Letang was likely going to be part of those big changes coming. Bottom line, it won’t be easy to move a 33 year-old rearguard with a no move clause and a $7.25 million cap hit.