The NHL with its general managers are meeting this week in Las Vegas prior to the NHL Award to be presented Wednesday night before heading to Sunrise Florida for the upcoming NHL Entry Draft on Friday. This is a perfect opportunity to get trade talks up a notch and create more rumors.
In this post, Trade Rumors look at whether the Pittsburgh Penguins are in on the Phil Kessel trade talks, the announcement of the new salary cap for teams to stick with next season, minor signings by the Leafs and Bruins, Edmonton’s option and Arizona’s number 3 pick and the offers they got for it.
Pittsburgh not in on Phil Kessel
According to Darren Dreger from TSN insider Trading, he stated on the TSN 1050 Sports Radio, that he believes strongly that the Pittsburgh Penguins will not be a destination for Toronto Maple Leafs winger Phil Kessel. Although they kicked the tires in the Kessel’s case, Dreger reports that he spoke to Pittsburgh Penguins general manager Jim Rutherford and Rutherford doesn’t feel like they can make a trade for Kessel. To acquire Kessel means having the space under the cap which they simply don’t have. kessel’s cap hit is 8M and for Pittsburgh that means jettisoning assets like Brandon Sutter or Chris Kunitz.
In addition Dreger reports that the Leafs would need to accept a player of similar contract or two with a total salary of Kessel. But the Leafs are not willing to accept residual salary like the one of Kessel. They are after draft picks and lower salary prospect as part of their rebuild. So for Pittsburgh to venture into the Kessel derby is a very long shot and they should be counted out.
On the same note, Dreger mentioned that the Leafs would rather not assume part of Kessel’s salary but they may not have a choice. In order to get a better quality player / picks, the Leafs are subject to take on some Kessel salary, if they want a deal that would make sense to them.
Salary Cap to be set at 71.4M in 2015-2016
Well the news finally came in today and the cap will be going up by a couple million dollars. The salary cap for the season 2015-2016 will be 71.4M In exchange the salary floor will be 52.8M and some teams now under will need to get above that. For some NHL teams, it is a bit higher than what some general managers had expected.
The league and the player’s association made the announcement today in Las Vegas where the governors, management at all levels for all 30 teams are meeting prior to the NHL Awards on Wednesday night. The salary cap for last season was $69.3M. This modest raise is die in fact to the weak Canadian dollar which has been an issue for the high revenue Canadian team in the past year. The NHLPA who triggered their escalator clause by 5% contributed to the slight raise. Teams who are tight against the cap with players to resign are Chicago, Philadelphia, Boston, NY Rangers, Los Angeles and Montreal. Some teams who are below the new floor are: Arizona, Buffalo, Nashville, Colorado.
Minor signings by the Leafs
More news on the Toronto Maple Leafs. Today the Leafs have signed defenceman Petter Granberg and Tim Erixon each to a one year contract, team officials announced. The team also signed prospect Zach Hyman acquired from the Panthers over last weekend on a two year contract.
Granberg, 22, had no points in seven games with the Leafs last season. he was a fourth round selection at the 2010 NHL Entry Draft. As for Erixon, the 24-years-old scored one goal in 15 games with the big team. Toronto claimed Erixon on waivers on March 1st 2015 from the Chicago Blackhawks. He was originally drafted by the Calgary Flames in the first round of the 2009 NHL Entry Draft.
Hyman, 23, collected 54 points in 37 games with the University of Michigan Wolverines last season.
McIntyre signs with the Bruins
The Boston Bruins proceeded ahead today with the signing of North Dakota goaltender Zane McIntyre. McIntyre signed a two-year entry level deal team officials announced. For McIntyre, this was his first pro contract.
In 42 games with the University of Dakota, McIntyre compiled a 29-10-3 record coupled with a goal against average of 2.05 and a save percentage of .929. His victories in a singular season represent the second highest total in the school’s hockey team history. In three seasons with North Dakota, McIntyre recorded 58 wins, 24 losses and 9 OTL games. He is Boston’s sixth round pick (165th overall) of the 2010 NHL Entry Draft.
Edmonton RFA offer sheet option
According to Pierre Lebrun from TSN Insider, Edmonton Oilers general manager Peter Chiarelli could be tempted to present an offer sheet to some of the players he may think valuable to his formation next year. Chiarelli who was the Boston bruins general manager could be tempted to present an offer sheet to Boston Bruins defenceman Dougie Hamilton. When asked about it, Chiarelli didn’t want to reveal his intentions but didn’t totally discard that option either. Edmonton will definitely need help on defence and a puck carrier such as Hamilton could help the high flying Oilers next season.
Peter Chiarelli has been involved with offer sheets before. “It’s a tool in our toolbox. I was faced with it in Boston on a couple of occasions – one very public, one not public – and it’s something you accept as a manager if you’re on the other end,” Chiarelli told the Edmonton media on Monday. “Now I may be on the other side of that and it’s something that you can use and certainly I wouldn’t rule out using it.”
As for the Oilers, they also had exposure to the offer sheet process in 2007 when Dustin Penner joined their ranks from the Anaheim Ducks. Anaheim inherited two draft selection for Penner. This year’s crop of RFA is deep and with several teams cap strapped, the idea of presenting offer sheets may be more an option than year’s past.
Beleskey heading to free agency
Reports out of Anaheim Ducks general manager Bob Murray are that playoff sensation Matt Beleskey will be heading to free agency come July 1st. Starting on June 25th, unrestricted free agent have the freedom to start negotiations with teams interested to them but are not allowed to sign until July 1st. The Duck’s last and best offer was made last week which was immediately rejected on the Beleskey side.
Beleskey is coming out his best year as a pro scoring 22 goals and 32 points in 65 games. He recorded an additional eight goals and nine points in sixteen games during the post-season. Beleskey earned $1.35M last season with the Ducks and is on the last year of a two year contract.
He was selected by the Ducks in the fourth round (112th overall) in the 2006 NHL Entry Draft.
Arizona has two serious offers for their no.3 pick
It was made clear by Arizona general manager Don Maloney, that although the no.3 pick at the NHL Entry Draft was available to trade, it would take an offer he can’t refuse to part with that selection. This opened the door for other teams to inquire about Arizona’s selection. This week Maloney might just do that. According to TSN NHL Insider Bob McKenzie, the Arizona Coyotes have received two serious offers that Maloney is actually pondering.
One of them is coming from a team in the top 10 which would mean Arizona go down a few spots.
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