NHL Rumors: Johnny Gaudreau already top trade deadline candidate; and what’s next for Joonas Korpisalo
The Calgary Flames were reportedly looking to extend Johnny Gaudreau over the summer. That did not materialize and the forward is not going to discuss contract talks.
“That’s between my agent and [GM Brad Treliving], and I probably won’t answer many questions for you throughout the year on that,” Gaudreau told the media when camp opened.
So will the two sides be able to hammer out an extension before the trade deadline?
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NHL Rumors: Johnny Gaudreau
Gaudreau, 28, earns $6.75 million against the cap and is in the final year of his contract. While his next deal should be for more, it’s unlikely to be much higher.
Johnny Hockey, as he’s known, openly stated he loves playing in Calgary and wants to stay. He scored 19 goals and 49 points in 56 contests for the Flames last season.
If the two sides can’t work a deal by the deadline, it will be Gaudreau whose in control of his destination. That’s because his 5 team no move clause kicked in on July 28th.
The Flyers have always been linked to Gaudreau as a potential destination. Back in 2017, the up and coming star let it be known he’d love to play for his hometown team.
“I have a ton of family [in Philadelphia] all my friends,” Gaudreau said during an interview with a Philly sports station. “All my good friends and kids who I have played with all my life are from South Jersey, so it would be sweet to play here someday. You never know in sports. It’s a lot of support back here in South Jersey and the Philly area, they follow me pretty well.”
What’s next for Joonas Korpisalo
It seems like the Blue Jackets have made a decision about who their number one goalie is for the future. Elvis Merzlikins signed a 5 year extension before the season started for $27 million.
“Goaltending is a position of strength for our team and Elvis Merzlikins has been an important part of that over the past two seasons, so we are very excited to have agreed to terms on a contract extension that will keep him in Columbus for at least the next six years,” Blue Jackets general manager Jarmo Kekalainen said.
So what about Joonas Korpisalo? Is he destined for a new home?
The 27 year-old netminder was 9-13-7 last season for Columbus. It really was a struggle for the entire team and he suffered for it posting a 3.30 GAA and .894 SV%. Although for his career, he boasts a 2.90 GAA and .905 SV%.
“I think his attitude is perfect about it,” Kekalainen said about Korpisalo. “He said to me, he’s not going to worry about this at all. He’s going to have a great season and go from there.”
Korpisalo will be a UFA this summer, which likely means he will be traded at the deadline. Keep your eyes on the either Maple Leafs or Oilers for his services.