In today’s rumor rundown, the Ottawa Senators are pitching hard for Mark Stone and Matt Duchene to stay, the Sharks are starting their negotiations with Erik Karlsson and the Boston Bruins and Toronto Maple Leafs are looking at what’s out there for them on the trade market.
Senators Make Duchene an Offer
It appears the Ottawa Senators and GM Pierre Dorion have taken the first step in keeping one of their big-three pending free agents in Ottawa. According to Nick Kypreos, Dorion met with Matt Duchene’s agent last week and presented him with a long-term contract offer.
Kypreos said the offer was in the areas of $64 million over eight seasons and part of the reason for that offer coming now was to show Matt Duchene how serious the organization is about keeping him.
Kypreos added, “I would think that would probably come with a soft deadline as well.” If Duchene declines, “I would think Pierre Dorion would need at least two weeks to shop him and get the best deal available.”
Elliotte Friedman then added he believes the franchise presented an offer to Mark Stone. “They met with Stone on Monday, a couple of days before they met with Matt Duchene. I believe they also presented something that they are willing to take a look at.”
Friedman believes the numbers are higher for Mark Stone than they are for Duchene but in the same ballpark.
Karlsson Contract Talks Have Started
Don Meehan, the agent who represents San Jose Sharks pending unrestricted free agent defenseman Erik Karlsson, met with GM Doug Wilson on Friday and started discussing a contract extension.
Both sides had held off talking a deal during the first half of the season with the idea of letting Karlsson get comfortable. With his incredible production since Christmas, Karlsson is certainly comfortable now and the Sharks want to know what the future holds.
Boston Bruins Swinging for the Fences
Kevin Paul Dupont of the Boston Globe reports the Boston Bruins are heavily in on Wayne Simmonds but if there’s any hesitation, it’s the asking price from the Philadelphia Flyers who are believed to want a first round pick along with a prospect or two. Boston has the prospects but is hesitant to give up the draft pick.
For Boston, it might be worth it as they view Wayne Simmonds as a perfect complement on the second line for David Krejci and Jake DeBrusk. Dupont writes:
The Bruins are desperate to find Krejci an upgrade at wing, be it left or right, and Simmonds is a 6-foot-2-inch righthanded shot who is comfortable on both sides. Given his straight-ahead style, he likely would line up on the right side (as Rick Nashdid a year ago) and DeBrusk on the left side.
source – ‘Could the Bruins afford asking price for Flyers’ Wayne Simmonds?’ – The Boston Globe – Kevin Dupont – 01/16/2019
If that deal can’t be done, Joe Haggerty of NBC Sports Boston suggests the Bruins will turn their efforts towards acquiring one of Brayden Schenn or Vladimir Tarasenko out of St. Louis. Haggerty says St. Louis’s scouting staff was spotted at a recent Boston-Montreal game which fueled speculation and if the Blues let Schenn go, it wouldn’t surprise many.
Update on Maple Leafs Hunt For a Righty
Sportsnet’s Nick Kypreos reports that the Toronto Maple Leafs are still actively looking for a top-four, right-side defenseman, He brought up Alex Pietrangelo from St. Louis again but believes there is some reluctance on the part of the Blues to move their captain.
Elliotte Friedman then mentioned Los Angeles Kings’ off-side lefty Jake Muzzin or Philadelphia Flyers’ bruiser Radko Gudas but Kypreos suggests the prices are quite high on both players and the Maple Leafs aren’t wanting to send Kasperi Kapanen or Andreas Johnsson or top blue line prospect Rasmus Sandin the other way.
Kypreos says the Maple Leafs would rather move the team’s first-round pick and AHL defensemen Timothy Liljegren and Calle Rosen. He didn’t think that would be enough.
Blackhawks Looking to Move Pieces
The Athletic’s Scott Powers writes the Chicago Blackhawks are attempting to trade Marcus Kruger, Chris Kunitz, and Andreas Martinson. Powers believes the Blackhawks will find a trading partner for Kruger but could have trouble moving the other two.