NHL Rumors: Ryan Nugent-Hopkins stops talks with Oilers, Tampa Bay working on a trade, and more
Ho Ho Ho! Merry Christmas NHL Rumors style. Today should be a relatively quiet day. I mean only GM Mean McScrooge would trade a player on Christmas, right?
Here’s the latest.
NHL Rumors: Ryan Nugent-Hopkins ends talks with the Oilers
Way back in October there was a lot of optimism surround the Edmonton Oilers and forward Ryan Nugent-Hopkins. At the time, Frank Seravalli was reporting that the two sides were working on a longterm deal.
Talks continue to progress between #Oilers and Ryan Nugent-Hopkins on a long-term extension. Not done, and not close, but positive developments in last 24 hrs.— Frank Seravalli (@frank_seravalli) October 1, 2020
Fast forward to today and both sides are singing different tunes. This is due in large part to the impact of the Pandemic to the NHL free agent landscape and no rise in the cap for years to come.
“Right now I’m just focused on getting the season started,” Nugent-Hopkins said. “In my mind, I know it’s there, but I’m going to put it on the back burner and just really focus on getting the season going and getting started the right way.”
Oilers GM, Ken Holland admitted they were talking heavily around the start of free agency in October. “The marketplace has changed so much that basically our conversations have ended, and I would hope at some point once we get up and running we can pick back up and see if we can find a solution to keep Nuge in an Oilers uniform,” Holland explained. “Certainly that’s my goal, but the deal’s got to work for Ryan and for the Oilers.”
NHL Rumors: Oilers looking at replacements for Oscar Klefbom
Oscar Klefbom has been lost for the season due to a shoulder injury that required surgery. According to TFP, the Oilers have interest in 27 year-old UFA defenseman Ben Hutton.
He played 65 games last season with the Kings and has a bit of offense to his game. He scored 4 goals and 16 points and could be a one-year solution for the Oilers on the left side.
RELATED: Oilers lose Klefbom
Luc Robitaille ready to improve the L.A. Kings
Former NHL and L.A. Kings great, Luc Robitaille is now the team’s President. When asked on a recent podcast about improving the club, he had this to say.
“If there is an opportunity, we would make the deal, but it has to make sense to us. If we have the opportunity to get a player in the right age bracket to fit in the direction we are going, we would look at it.via TFP
The question is simple, with $10 million in cap space available to the Kings, will they spend now? Or would it be wiser to take that cap space and more into next summer’s free agent frenzy where there will be an abundance of talent available to them.