NHL Rumours: Washington Capitals, Carolina Hurricanes, and More

NHL Rumours
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With the playoffs coming to a close in the near future, that means one thing. The NHL off-season is growing ever closer. With the off-season fast approaching that means that there are many NHL rumours going around the league. Teams are preparing to try and keep their expiring players or go after new ones. Today we will look at NHL rumours involving the Washington Capitals, Carolina Hurricanes, New Jersey Devils, and Minnesota Wild.

NHL Rumours

Washington Capitals

Rumour: According to RMNB, Alex Ovechkin‘s next contract may be in the area of $12,000,000.

Analysis: Alex Ovechkin has been the face of the Capitals franchise for many years now. With his contract set to expire at an awkward time, it’s an interesting predicament for the Capitals. He is the Capitals franchise leader in just about every offensive category (other than assists). His contract is expiring at the end of the 2020-21 season.

At the age of 35, and 36 by the time his next contract takes effect, he is much older than most players would be to ask that kind of money. It is a given in the NHL that you should not pay that much money to any player that old. Ovechkin, however, isn’t just any player. Thus, an awkward situation arises. He will demand a raise from his $9,538,462 and is justified to do so. He will almost certainly demand a multi-year deal with that, and that’s where the potential issues arise. Ovechkin is an incredible player that has somehow defied aging curves. But the Capitals cannot bank on Ovechkin to continue to defy this for many more years. It is a big risk to give a player that will be 36 anywhere near $12,000,000.

Like previously said, however, Ovechkin is no ordinary player. He is the face of the franchise. Consistently in the top 10 selling jerseys each year. He is the player that led the franchise to its first ever Stanley Cup. He is a player that you must keep around, even if it could end up as a “bad hockey deal”. And that may not even be the case. Ovechkin could continue to put up goals even into his later years. He is a player that should play his career with a single team. He is a player that could take a run at breaking the all time goal record held by Wayne Gretzky. So even if it is $12,000,000 a season for Ovi, the Capitals should do what it takes to re-sign him.

Carolina Hurricanes

Rumour: According to Pierre LeBrun on TSN 1040 the Carolina Hurricanes have been getting a lot of calls for James Reimer recently due to his bonus being paid.

Analysis: James Reimer is entering the final season of a 5-year contract that he signed in Florida. He has been paid his bonus of $2,250,000 and only has $850,000 to be paid over the regular season. With the goalie market so saturated this season between potential trade targets and unrestricted free agents, it’s the salary that sets him above the rest. During a time where everyone isn’t making as much money, real cash to be paid is just as important as cap hit. Similar to the ongoing situation in Toronto with Frederik Andersen, Carolina could take advantage of the market and trade Reimer for assets. The Hurricanes could then go out and sign a goaltender of equal or better quality than the one they traded. If cash is not an issue for owner Tom Dundon, then this would be the best asset management for the team.

Reimer played incredibly well in limited games for the Hurricanes this season, and if he can string together a similar run for this upcoming season he could be a great addition. There are many teams looking for either goaltending help or to shake things up. At his current play and cap hit, Reimer would be an excellent addition to any team looking to add a backup. While he had shown some strong games, it would be risky betting on him as a starter for any contender. If the price is right to acquire him, though, he could be an excellent acquisition that doesn’t cost a lot of real cash.

New Jersey Devils

Rumour: Pierre LeBrun stated at The Athletic that the Devils have been in touch with Palmieri‘s camp and they could decide to wait on an extension. The Devils are also listening in on offers.

Analysis: Kyle Palmieri is an extremely consistent player in the NHL. Consistently playing at or around a 30 goal pace for the past few seasons. At age 29, Palmieri could threaten to decline in the near future, however, he has still posted extremely respectable results since landing in New Jersey. It makes sense that both sides think it’s a good idea to wait. The first reason being the current economic landscape of the world and league due to the pandemic. The second being that there is no guarantee that the Devils would prefer to sign him rather than flip him as a rental for assets.

Palmieri is getting to the age where he would begin looking at where he could go to win a cup. It does not seem like New Jersey is close to that after selling at yet another trade deadline. However, Palmieri is still very good and the Devils do need to ice a roster in the coming years. Having a player that has been on the team for a long time could be a good thing as they try to rebuild. If the number is fair in the eyes of the Devils, it isn’t outrageous to see him remain in New Jersey.

Minnesota Wild

Rumour: Elliotte Friedman states that Minnesota has been in touch with Alex Galchenyuk and his agent and it is unlikely that he will return next season. 

Analysis: Alex Galchenyuk has played for four different teams over his three year contract and has not really stood out since his time in Montreal. It is not shocking to see him look for yet a new market to get a fresh start. Galchenyuk may be looking at a pay decrease from his $4,900,000 per year salary due to his decline in play. If this is the case, a short term contract could be in his best interests to be able to “prove himself” and get more money on a future deal.

The team that Galchenyuk goes to cannot look at him as the 2012 third overall pick. They must rather look at Galchenyuk as a bottom-6 forward and play him as such. If he does perform well, move him up in the lineup. However, if his new team were to place him instantly in the top-6 it would be setting him up for failure. The idea of placing him on a third line is to put him in some more sheltered usage. This will put him in a role to succeed moving forward.

That concludes the NHL rumours today! Check in again tomorrow to find even more NHL rumours!

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