NHL Rumors: Oilers, Maple Leafs, Devils, More

In today’s NHL rumor rundown, Jesse Puljujarvi has signed a one-year extension in Finland, but there’s still reason to think a return to Edmonton is possible. In Toronto, the Maple Leafs got good and bad news when it comes to the status of defenseman Jake Muzzin. And, how many New Jersey Devils’ players will head to Europe before the start of next season? Finally, are the Devils thinking about moving P.K. Subban?

Puljujarvi Signs in Finland

Jesse Puljujarvi has signed a one-year extension with Karpat Oulu of the Finnish Liiga. He said of the extension, “It’s a good place to take the next steps in my career”.

Ivan Provorov, Jesse Puljujarvi
Edmonton Oilers’ Jesse Puljujarvi, and Philadelphia Flyers’ Ivan Provorov (THE CANADIAN PRESS/AP/Matt Slocum)

It’s important to take note that his new deal has an out clause to return to NHL and in recent days, reports are that Ken Holland and Puljujarvi have held positive talks about a potential return.

Also important to note is that this signing may be more about continuing to play and develop than it is an indication of where Puljujarvi will suit up next season. He last played hockey on March 12. By signing in Finland, he’ll enter the Oilers training camp in much better shape as opposed to rusty.

Puljujarvi said when being asked about the Edmonton Oilers: “I have grown and I see things a little differently”. There is no guarantee he comes back from Finland next season, but his signing there shouldn’t indicate he’ll stay.

Related: The 5 Greatest Goaltenders in NHL History

Muzzin Released From Hospital, Will Miss Series

Jake Muzzin’s injury in Game 2 versus the Columbus Blue Jackets was scary. While, at first, it didn’t seem like his fall was anything significant, when he couldn’t leave the ice on his own accord and needed a stretcher, there was a concern for his well-being.

He was rushed to the hospital but the good news is, he’s back in the team’s hotel. The bad news is, because Muzzin left the NHL bubble, he must remain in quarantine and will miss the rest of the series.

Currently, the NHL’s protocol calls for any player who returns to the bubble from an excused exit to quarantine in his hotel room until four consecutive negative tests for COVID-19 have been completed over a four-day time frame. Martin Marincin will likely replace Muzzin in the lineup for Game 3 on Thursday. 

Pierre-Luc Dubois’ crosscheck that played a factor in Muzzin going down isn’t being disciplined by the NHL.

Devils Could See Players Warm-Up in Europe

Corey Masisak of The Athletic writes that it’s possible a number of Devils’ players will head overseas before the start of the next NHL season. But, one key player probably won’t be among them.

Masisak writes:

I think it’s possible a few Devils will play in Europe before the 2020-21 NHL season begins, but I don’t think Hughes will be one of them. One potential issue, particularly for players who want to play in Switzerland, could be the country not letting American citizens like Hughes in because the virus continues to spread in the U.S.

source – ‘Devils mailbag: Prospect camp scenarios, P.K. Subban’s future and the draft’ – Corey Masisak – 08/03/2020

For teams like the Devils, not being in this season’s play-ins means a lot of rest time.

Subban Offseason Trade?

Masisak also notes that writes that he doesn’t think the Devils will move P.K. Subban in the offseason. First, he says Nashville general manager David Poile admitted New Jersey was the only club interested in Subban and his full salary. Second, the Devils aren’t ready to give up on the star defenseman.

P.K. Subban New Jersey Devils
P.K. Subban, New Jersey Devils (Jess Starr/The Hockey Writers)

The thought seems to be, if he plays better and produces more for the new coaching staff, his trade value could increase. At that point, maybe the team will see if there are interested teams out there before the trade deadline.

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