In today’s NHL rumor rundown, the San Jose Sharks might have a need for a goaltender that may not get the deal he wants in free agency. The Edmonton Oilers are recouperating during this pause in the NHL and the coach says two injured players are good to go. Finally, Boston Bruins goaltender Tuukka Rask felt the need to clarify comments he made about possibly retiring.
And no… none of these are April Fools jokes.
Sharks Interested in Holtby?
Larry Brooks of the New York Post took a look at what’s in store for goaltender Braden Holtby who is becoming an unrestricted free agent at an inopportune time. His lower-than-average save percentage combined with what is expected to be a flat salary cap doesn’t bode well for him getting the kind of contract he might like.
Brooks wondered if the San Jose Sharks might have interest as their goaltending has been dreadful over the last two seasons, ranking next-to-last in overall save percentage and last in five-on-five. Unfortunately, while, Martin Jones‘ production has dropped he’s signed through 2023-24 with an annual average value of $5.75 million and a three-team trade list. The Sharks would have to somehow move Jones to be able to afford Holtby, even if he were to take a discount.
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Oilers to Get a Couple Players Back For Playoffs
Head coach Dave Tippett told reporters, that defenseman Mike Green (knee) and winger Joakim Nygard (upper body) have both recovered from their respective injuries and are good to go if the season resumes.
Green was picked up at the trade deadline and only got a couple of games in before going down with an injury. He was expected to be a power play and depth guy for the Oilers on their blue line. Nygard was a depth forward with speed to burn. He’s scored nine points in 33 games during his rookie season but broke a bone when blocking a shot in the heated game versus the Calgary Flames following the Matthew Thackuk and Zack Kassian incident.
Rask Tries to Clarify Retirement Comments
When Tuukka Rask publicly stated he might consider retirement after his current contract comes to an end, there was a lot of talk and speculation around the Boston Bruins and what they might do about their goaltending situation.
Joe Haggerty of NBC Sports Boston writes that Rask thought it was wise to clarify his recent comments. Rask noted that he hasn’t made any decisions regarding his future. “I’m sure we’re going to have good conversations with (Don Sweeney) after this season and go from there,” said Rask during an interview with WEEI’s Greg Hill. He added:
“But I’m only 34, so it’s not too old, might play another year or two and go from there. I don’t want to promise anything either way because you never know what’s going to happen.”
For the Bruins, short-term deals with Rask after this one ends makes sense. they don’t really have a netminder in their pipeline to replace him.
Flyers Not Talking to Free Agents
Philadelphia Flyers GM Chuck Fletcher told Jordan Hall of NBC Sports Philadelphia that he hasn’t started any talks with any of his pending free agents about new deals.
Even though the team has a few contracts to consider and other teams are starting to chat with their respective players, the Flyers are waiting on names like Brian Elliott, Justin Braun, Derek Grant, Oskar Lindblom and Nolan Patrick.
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Jim Parsons is a senior THW freelance writer, part-time journalist and audio/video host who lives, eats, sleeps and breathes NHL news and rumors, while also writing features on the Edmonton Oilers. He’s been a trusted source for five-plus years at The Hockey Writers, but more than that, he’s on a mission to keep readers up to date with the latest NHL rumors and trade talk. Jim is a daily must for readers who want to be “in the know.”