NHL Rumors: Wild, Sharks, Bruins, Rangers, More

In today’s NHL rumors rundown, Michael Russo of The Athletic offers an update on the contract negotiations between the Minnesota Wild and Kirill Kaprizov. Evander Kane is in trouble again, this time from a charge that he offered to pay a woman to get an abortion, then backed out. David Krejci responds to talk that he could actually return to the Boston Bruins sometime this season. Finally, Jeff Gorton discussed the Tom Wilson incident from last season and if/how that led to his dismissal as general manager of the New York Rangers.

Kaprizov Contract Talks Update

It appears there’s good news for Wild fans when it comes to Kaprizov. Russo writes, “A contract doesn’t sound imminent, but the good news on the Kirill Kaprizov contract talks with the #mnwild, there’s been a lot of conversation lately between the Wild and the Calder Trophy winner’s side. Also, CSKA Moscow has publicly stated he’s not playing there this season.”

Kirill Kaprizov Minnesota Wild
Kirill Kaprizov, Minnesota Wild (Photo by Nick Wosika/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images)

With the KHL offer off the table, this means that GM Bill Guerin can now negotiate a deal with Kaprizov without the looming “second” deal in the background. The expectation is that somewhere between five and six years will be what the player signs for, giving him plenty of time to up his stock in the NHL and cash in big a few years down the road.

News Keeps Getting Worse for Evander Kane

It was ruled on Monday that Kane must face discovery in an abortion-for-pay lawsuit that started back in 2018. According to Daniel Kaplan of The Athletic:

“A federal bankruptcy judge gave the go-ahead for discovery in a lawsuit filed by Hope Parker, who alleges Kane reneged on a promise to pay her at least $2 million if she aborted their pregnancy… That means Parker, who first sued in 2018 in California state court, can begin seeking testimony and electronic correspondence from Kane, who says he changed his mind about paying Parker before she sent him proof of the abortion.

source – ‘Judge rules Sharks’ Evander Kane must face discovery in abortion-for-pay lawsuit’ – Daniel Kaplan – The Athletic – 08/23/2021
Evander Kane San Jose Sharks
Evander Kane, San Jose Sharks (Amy Irvin / The Hockey Writers)

Parker alleges that Kane had her abort two separate pregnancies and that she didn’t want to do a third time until he offered two to three million dollars. This decision by a judge doesn’t mean the court is ruling in Parker’s favor, but that it sees enough reason for the case to move forward.

There’s a long way to go with this trial if it continues to move forward and it’s the type of case that often gets settled out of court.

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Krejci Not Returning to Bruins

The Bruins had publicly said they knew Krejci might be gone long-term but were holding out hope that he might choose to return to the NHL after he played in the Czech Republic in front of his friends and family. Krejci seemed to shoot down any chance of him returning to the Bruins this season.

During a press conference with his new team in the Czech Republic on Monday, Krejci told reporters that the spring season in Boston was not on his list. In a report (translated by Google), Krejci told reporters via the HC Olomouc club’s website, “I will stay in Olomouc all season.” He added, “I’m not dealing with what’s next at all at the moment, but returning to Boston in the spring is definitely not in the game.”

Could he return for the 2022-23 season? That remains possible, but if he’s gone back to raise his children near his family, that too seems unlikely.

Gorton Talks The Wilson Incident

Gorton, former Rangers GM, was a guest on the Cam and Strick Podcast and spoke about a number of topics, among them the whole Tom Wilson incident that led to the Rangers making sweeping changes and bulking up this offseason, specifically with the addition of Ryan Reaves.

John Davidson Jeff Gorton New York Rangers 2019 NHL Draft
John Davidson and Jeff Gorton of the New York Rangers, 2019 NHL Draft (Photo by Bruce Bennett/Getty Images)

When asked what happened on the ice, he still doesn’t quite know how things got so out of hand and if he thought the dominos that fell afterwards led to his dismissal, he noted, “Obviously, I lost my job – it probably has to be more than that. I don’t know but it has to be more than that – it can’t be just one thing.” He noted that the organization had multiple meetings prior to that game talking about team toughness and their young guys learning to face adversity. “I didn’t think that night was going to be what it turned into – that people were going to lose their jobs,” he said.

Gorton said that the New York Rangers PR department wrote the statement slamming the NHL for the lack of suspension handed out to Wilson and said that he’d not seen it prior to it becoming public.

Gorton did say that addressing team toughness was on their agenda, but they hadn’t quite reached that part of the rebuild process yet.