In today’s NHL rumors, there is speculation Henrik Lundqvist could have played his final game as Ranger. In Anaheim, the Ducks might try to acquire key pieces with limited cap space. In the Flames versus Jets series, will Winnipeg get Patrik Laine or Mark Scheifele back for Game 3? Finally, what is the latest news on COVID-19 tests?
Lundqvist Done With Rangers?
Larry Brooks of the New York Post wonders if Henrik Lundqvist has played his final game for the New York Rangers. With the Rangers on the verge of elimination today, if Igor Shesterkin is healthy, he’ll probably get the start against the Carolina Hurricanes. If Shesterkin isn’t healthy, the Rangers might elect to go with backup Alexandar Georgiev.
Lundqvist has one year remaining on his contract and at a value of $8.5 million. It will be an interesting situation to watch as Lundqvist still holds a full no-movement clause. Would they elect to buy out his contract if he doesn’t agree to waive?
NHL Reported Zero Positive COVID-19 Tests
On Monday, the NHL provided another weekly update on their COVID-19 testing, indicating once again that they have had zero positive results inside the bubble.
This is huge news because it shows that the system the NHL is using works. The league administered more than 7,000 tests and other leagues should take notice.
Ducks Trade Target Options
Eric Stephens of The Athletic took a look at the options in the offseason for the Anaheim Ducks and with limited cap space. Stephens keys in on five potential trade options that include Dylan Strome, Kasperi Kapanen, Jaden Schwartz, Jake Virtanen, and Antti Raanta.
Stephens wonders if the Blackhawks could be a target as they have just over $7 million in projected cap space and have to sign players like Strome, Dominik Kubalik, and prospect Kirby Dach. Of Strome being available:
We haven’t addressed Strome, who was stellar in 2018-19 after coming over from Arizona for Nick Schmaltz and less so in 2019-20. But the former No. 3 overall draft pick is coming out of his entry-level deal and ready to cash in with 89 points over his 116 games with Chicago. What could make him available is Kirby Dach showed promise as a rookie and could become the No. 2 center behind captain Jonathan Toews (and possibly supplant Toews for No. 1 status).source – ‘Five players the Ducks could add from cap crunched teams’ – Eric Stephens – The Athletic – 07/28/2020
In Toronto, there’s a similar situation as the Leafs potentially only have the room to sign both Frederik Andersen and Zach Hyman — who will be UFAs after next season — if they move Kapanen or Andreas Johnsson, or Alexander Kerfoot.
In St. Louis, things will be tight and the Blues would like to avoid moving Schwartz. Vince Dunn could interest the Ducks.
If the Ducks could choose from the Canucks, they’d pick Brock Boeser, but Virtanen seems to be on the outs with the franchise and could shake loose this offseason.
Antti Raanta could be on interest to the Ducks if Ryan Miller chooses to retire or the team goes another direction. Should the Coyotes continue pursuing Taylor Hall, moving the $4.25 million cap hit of Raanta would give them some needed space.
Jets Still Without Laine and Scheifele
Winnipeg Jets head coach Paul Maurice declined to say whether or not Patrik Laine or Mark Scheifele could return to the team’s lineup for Tuesday’s Game 3 against the Calgary Flames.
The series is tied 1-1 and the Flames failed to take advantage of an opportunity to put a stranglehold on the series. If Laine and/or Scheifele return, it could be a huge confidence boost for the Jets.
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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.”