NHL News & Rumors: Oilers, Hurricanes, Canadiens, Blue Jackets, More

In today’s NHL news and rumors, the Montreal Canadiens are working with GM Marc Bergevin on a possible contract extension. Meanwhile, the Edmonton Oilers have started working on the details of a contract extension with defenseman Adam Larsson. The Carolina Hurricanes are close to signing coach Rod Brind’Amour and a change in New York Rangers management won’t change the fate of defenseman Tony DeAngelo. Finally, head coach John Tortorella has started saying his goodbyes in Columbus.

Canadiens Talking to Bergevin About Future

As per Sportsnet’s Elliotte Friedman, Canadiens ownership and general manager Marc Bergevin are talking about his future, including what an extension would look like. Bergevin has a year left on his deal but the Canadiens don’t like to let things get too close before finalizing big deals.

Montreal Canadiens Marc Bergevin
Montreal Canadiens general manager Marc Bergevin (THE CANADIAN PRESS/Paul Chiasson)

Friedman explained:

“Marc Bergevin and the owner Geoff Molson have been kind of talking about the future; how the owner feels, how the general manager feels, if there is an extension what it could potentially look like. So we’ll see where those decisions go and where those conversations go, but I think they are underway about the GM’s future with the Canadiens.”

Brind’Amour and Hurricanes Close on 3-Year Deal

Friedman also noted: Head coach Rod Brind’Amour and the Carolina Hurricanes are closing in on a three-year contract extension at around $1.8 million per season. There was some confusion on Saturday that the team had announced a three-year contract was done, but Chris Johnston noted that it could have been the team just announcing his three-year anniversary with the team.

At this point, sources say the deal is not finalized but is imminent.

Larsson and Oilers Making Progress on an Extension

Finally, Friedman noted the Edmonton Oilers and pending unrestricted free agent defenseman Adam Larsson are getting closer on the details of a four-year extension. There was talk the two sides had begun contract talks, but it wasn’t known how far along they were.

Edmonton Oilers Adam Larsson
Edmonton Oilers’ Adam Larsson (THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jason Franson)

Friedman said:

“Adam Larsson, before the trade deadline the Oilers and Adam Larsson began contract negotiations. While they are not done, they’ve made good progress. The word is both sides are hopeful. There won’t be any conversation now until the Oilers finish the season but there is a lot of optimism Larsson will be extended around four years.

It makes sense that the Oilers and Larsson will come to terms on a deal before the NHL Expansion Draft but finalize things afterwards.

Related: Maple Leafs News & Notes: Nylander, Campbell, Marner & Andersen

Rangers Won’t Bring Back DeAngelo

Despite changes in management, the New York Post is reporting that the plan for the Rangers is still remove defenseman Tony DeAngelo from the equation and he won’t be back with the team. A change in general manager does not mean that DeAngelo is welcome back and Larry Brooks cites a “reliable source” claiming the recent change in management won’t affect DeAngelo’s status.

The previous administration indicated DeAngelo played his final game with the team and the expectation is that he’ll be bought out during the offseason. He has a year remaining on his contract with a $4.5 million cap hit.

Tortorella Not Returning to Blue Jackets

Multiple sources, along with Aaron Portzline of The Athletic are reporting that Columbus Blue Jackets head coach John Tortorella won’t be back next season to coach the team. Portzline writes:

The winningest coach in franchise history decided to move on when his contract expires this offseason, ending a six-year run in Columbus that included four playoff berths, the first playoff series win in franchise history, and some memorable and turbulent moments along the way.

source – ‘Sources: John Tortorella won’t return as Columbus Blue Jackets coach after six seasons’ – Aaron Portzline – The Athletic – 05/08/2021
John Tortorella Blue Jackets bench (2)
John Tortorella, Columbus Blue Jackets bench, Feb. 22, 2018 (Amy Irvin / The Hockey Writers)

Saturday night was his last game coaching the team and Tortorella brought a number of his team’s other coaches on the bench with him to be part of the game. He wouldn’t say if he was leaving, but noted he would talk to GM Jarmo Kekalainen in the next few days.

While that seems to indicate that a conversation between Torts and Kekalinen hasn’t happened yet, sources say that the two have already spoke and the coach has started saying goodbye to players.

Friedman noted that does not plan to retire at the age of 63 years old. He will look to land another coaching job with another hockey club.