NHL Rumors: Golden Knights, Rangers, Oilers, and Canucks
The NHL Rumors buzz has obviously died down as the focus now shifts to the Stanley Cup Playoffs which will begin on May 2.
With that said, there are 16 teams that will have their season end today. That will automatically begin offseason talks about what they will do. And with each round, teams will be eliminated to join in those conversations.
One such team that is already generating plenty of rumor chatter are the eliminated Vegas Golden Knights.
NHL Rumors: Vegas Golden Knights
Tonight, the Golden Knights will play their last game of the year against the St. Louis Blues. Once the final buzzer sounds all eyes will turn to the futures of head coach Peter DeBoer and GM Kelly McCrimmon.
“The Golden Knights have no cap space, no top draft picks, and a thin prospect cupboard. It feels like an inevitability that coach Pete DeBoer will be cut loose,” Daily Faceoff’s Frank Seravalli said. “But will GM Kelly McCrimmon follow him out the door?”
If DeBoer is a scapegoat for this season, despite the ridiculous amount of injuries Vegas dealt with, McCrimmon needs to be held accountable too. It is his roster that ultimately failed.
What also can’t be overlooked is the way Marc-Andre Fleury was unceremoniously dealt away in favor of Robin Lehner. Then to have Lehner try to play through injuries only to be upset with criticism and want to shut it down. That situation led to the entire debacle regarding the denial of season-ending surgery just a few days before confirming it.
The rumor mill is going to work overtime this offseason until that story is known.
“There’s one person that I really trust who’s really plugged into this situation. He said to me ‘be careful, because this one, there’s a lot going on under the surface. Be very, very careful this is going to be a tricky story. A very tricky story.’“Elliotte Friedman via Sin Bin Vegas
Rangers want to extend Andrew Copp, Oilers want to sign Evander Kane
On the latest edition of TSN Insider Trading, Darren Dreger provided an update on two pending unrestricted free agents.
“I can tell you that both the New York Rangers and the Edmonton Oilers are going to try as hard as possible to extend the contracts of Andrew Copp and Evander Kane,” Dreger began.
“I’m told the New York Rangers are going to push hard – hard – to extend Andrew Copp, we can understand why,” he continued. “Likewise for Evander Kane and the Oilers. But you wonder about the term between Kane and the Oilers. Is three years too much? We’ll have to find out.”
Copp, 27, was added at the NHL Trade Deadline on March 21 from the Winnipeg Jets. He has a point in 13 of the 16 games (18 points) he’s played with the Rangers since the deadline. This season, he has 53 points in 72 games.
The Rangers may also be looking at Copp as replacement for Ryan Strome at the second line center position next season. Strome, 28, is a UFA but there’s been no progress in extension talks.
Kane, 30, was acquired by the Oilers as a free agent after the Sharks terminated his contract. In 42 games, he has recorded 22 goals and 39 points.
Elliotte Friedman also noted that Kane’s recent grievance hearing over his contract termination will take more time to resolve and there is no talk of a settlement.
Canucks J.T Miller
J.T. Miller has been nothing short of spectacular this year. The Canucks 29 year-old leading scorer has 98 points in 79 games and will be a topic of conversation again this summer.
Miller currently has one more year on a deal that comes with a bargain AAV of $5.25 Million. However, there’s speculation that his next deal will be a huge raise that may come with an AAV of $9 million per season.
Will the Canucks be willing to go that high? If they do it may come at the cost of trading Bo Horvat or Brock Boeser. Regardless, the bigger question is if Vancouver will also be willing to go the max 7 or 8 years on a player that will turn 30 next March.