In today’s NHL rumors rundown, there’s news on couple of goaltenders, while the Calgary Flames are expected to make some massive changes. The Edmonton Oilers are prepping for the playoffs as best they can and the future for Nikita Zadorov in Chicago is unclear. Finally, what happens if the Arizona Coyotes win the NHL Draft Lottery?
Carter Hart Done for Season
The Philadelphia Flyers have announced that goaltender Carter Hart is finished for the season due to a MCL sprain in his left-knee. The decision to sit him makes sense the way the Flyers are playing. Even if he could come back, it’s better to not push it. Give him the time to properly heal, and reset, then return next season to proper form.
More Doubt Regarding Zadorov’s Future With Blackhawks
As per Ben Pope of the Chicago Sun Times, with the Blackhawks’ signing physical defenseman Riley Stillman to a three-year contract extension, there’s even more doubt about Nikita Zadorov’s future in Chicago. Zadorov’s RFA rights could be traded in the offseason.
Bowman considered offers for Zadorov at the trade deadline but asked a higher price than any suitors would meet. Lowering the price and moving Zadorov in July would represent waving the white flag on the much criticized Brandon Saad trade with the Avalanche last October.source – ‘Blackhawks sign Riley Stillman to 3-year contract extension’ Ben Pope- Chicago Sun Times – 04/25/2021
Flames Have Bigger Changes Coming Than Expected
TSN’s Salim Valji took a look at what Flames general manager Brad Treliving has done in his seven years with the team and points out the perception of the Flames as a flawed team has grown. At this point, there are rumblings it will take far more than a few changes to turn this disappointing club into a perennial Stanley Cup contender.
Among the changes could be moving Johnny Gaudreau before his no-trade clause kicks in after this season, leaving team captain Mark Giordano exposed in the NHL expansion draft and testing the market on under-performing winger Matthew Tkachuk. Tkachuk will be a restricted free agent next summer with arbitration rights requiring a $9 million qualifying offer.
Oilers to Rotate Defensemen, Give McDavid More Ice Time
Oilers head coach Dave Tippett spoke with the media on Wednesday before the games versus Winnipeg and mentioned that the blue line corps for the Oilers could be shuffled up down the stretch to keep guys fresh and ready for the playoffs. The Oilers are on a roll right now, but they don’t need someone getting injured and then an ice cold Evan Bouchard or Kris Russell coming into the lineup.
Also, there’s talk that as McDavid creeps closer to the 100-point mark this season, the Oilers will give him a bit more ice time to help him out. It’s a strange thing to say considering he plays so much, but in the Oilers win over the Jets on Monday, McDavid saw only 16 minutes worth of ice time.
McDavid is exactly on pace for a 100-point season after his three points on Wednesday.
Ryan Miller to Retire
Anaheim Ducks goaltender Ryan Miller has announced that he will retire at the conclusion of 2020-21 season. At 40 years old, Miller will leave the game as one of the best U.S.-born goaltenders in league history.
In a team release, Miller explained his decision:
It was a dream come true when I played my first NHL game and it has been a privilege to spend 18 years as a professional. I have decided that I am going to retire after the season having been given more time doing what I love than I could ever have hoped for. Thank you to you my teammates and staff, past and present. I’m thankful to so many who made my career possible and helped me on my journey from youth hockey to the NHL. Thank you to my family for supporting me with so much love and enthusiasm.
Coyotes Winning Would Cause Re-Draft
Frank Seravalli noted in the most recent TSN Insider Trading that should the Arizona Coyotes win the NHL Draft Lottery this year, the winning selection will be redrawn and the selection made again. Elliotte Friedman of Sportsnet notes that it sounds like the NHL draft lottery will be on July 2nd.
The Coyotes have forfeited the selection due to penalties assessed from their illegal combine practices but the NHL wasn’t interested in changing the odds for each team as a result.
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.”