NHL Rumours: Montreal Canadiens, Vegas Golden Knights, New York Islanders

NHL Rumours

The silly season is upon us and the rumours are coming in hot and heavy. This is why there is a double dose of NHL Rumours. As we inch closer to the Seattle expansion draft, teams are positioning themselves to make moves once free agency starts. As we have seen this week teams are making deals to teams that can protect a player they might have lost in the Seattle draft. Then there is the NHL Draft and the moves made that day. Keep it locked on the Last Word on Hockey for the latest rumours and news. In today’s NHL Rumours we look at the Montreal Canadiens, Vegas Golden Knights and New York Islanders.

NHL Rumours

Montreal Canadiens

Rumour: Renaud Lavoie of TVA Sports was on Sportsnet 690 and said it is 50/50 that Phillip Danault will be back with the Canadiens next season. 

Analysis: We all know last season the Canadiens offered a contract that totalled $30 million which was for six years with a salary cap hit of $5 million. Though his offensive production was not there, Danault was a key asset for the Canadiens in their march to the Stanley Cup Final. Danault was able to shut down the likes of Auston Matthews, Mitch Marner, Mark Scheifele, Kyle Connor, Mark Stone, Max Pacioretty, and even Brayden Point. And even in the playoffs, Danault’s numbers were not that good, but that was not his role. He was more of a shutdown player. And in that in the role, he has garnished attention for the Selke Trophy.

Unfortunately for Danault, he may not see a contract like he saw the last off-season and is regretting not signing it. He even said so when the Canadiens had their final press availability for the year. Danault said the weight of the contract was weighing him down and that is why his production fell off. The Canadiens like Danault, but the offer from last year is gone. And his worth on from the team and the open market has gone down. If the Canadiens do not bring him back, he may have to settle for a one or two-year deal in another place. Montreal could circle back with the same length, but less money.

Vegas Golden Knights

Rumour: On the Thursday edition of Insider Trading Pierre LeBrun stated the Vegas Golden Knights could be willing to move one of their goalies to open up cap space.

Analysis: The salary cap is finally catching up with the Golden Knights after they signed Alex Pietrangelo last offseason. They are in need of clearing salary cap space so they can re-sign Alec Martinez. Since they are immune from the Seattle expansion draft, they will have to move a player or two to open the amount of money to pay him. One of the options is to ship out one of their goalies either Robin Lehner or Marc-Andre Fleury. Fleury’s name has been linked to trade rumours for quite some time now ever since Lehner’s arrival in Vegas. It appears Lehner is DeBoer’s guy so it would make sense to trade Fleury.

There are only a handful of teams that could pick up Fleury’s $7 million contract. The Blackhawks are open of them. So are the Devils. But if either team brought him, Fleury would automatically be the starter. There is a chance the Penguins could come calling, but they also have salary-cap issues as well. This is only one option and not to Vegas is looking to move either goalie, but it feels more like Fleury will be the guy than Lehner. It is hard to imagine the Golden Knights enter the season with the same duo again this season.

New York Islanders

Rumour: Sportsnet’s Elliotte Friedman said on his 31 Thoughts podcast that both Ryan Suter and Zach Parise could end up on Long Island

Analysis: Lou Lamoriello made a play for Zach Parise at last year’s trade deadline, but ultimately did not go through with it once word got out. Now instead of trading for Parise, he just has to sign him. Lamoriello has a trend of signing former players that played for him in New Jersey. Parise would be a good fit for the Islanders. He brings leadership and experience to a team that is one or two pieces away from making the Stanley Cup Final. Even though Parise has lost a step or two, he has shown he can be a versatile player. Not to mention, Parise has shown he still has got game left in his body after coming back from serious injuries. It makes too much sense for the Islanders not to go after him.

As for Suter, while the Capitals are a front runner, Suter did play for Barry Trotz in Nashville. And Suter had some of his best numbers in Trotz’s system. Plus adding Suter to their third pair over Andy Greene is an upgrade. He can still eat minutes and play on the power play. He makes the Islanders better and could be essential if the Islanders make the playoffs as they try to win the Stanley Cup once again.

That does it for this edition of NHL Rumours. Stay tuned for another edition on Saturday.

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