NHL Rumors: Lightning, Wild, Rangers, Blues, More

In today’s NHL rumors rundown, the Tampa Bay Lightning need to make some big changes and there are questions about whether or not a Steven Stamkos departure could be among them. Meanwhile, the Minnesota Wild are gearing up for the NHL Expansion Draft and have 24 hours to ask a couple of key players to waive their no-move clauses. What are the most likely landing spots for Vladimir Tarasenko and when might the New York Rangers choose to buy out defenseman Tony DeAngelo?

Update on Stamkos’ Future in Tampa Bay

Noting there is going to be imminent change in Tampa Bay, Darren Dreger said during a hit on TSN1050: “Starting to hear the whispers again of the future of their captain Steven Stamkos in Tampa Bay.” He didn’t elaborate, but the news comes as a bit of a surprise considering most insiders think there’s no way Stamkos agrees to be traded.

There’s a feeling the Lightning could lose as many as six important pieces from their Stanley Cup run and Stamkos is now seen as perhaps a less integral part of that lineup than he used to be. Scott Wheeler wrote: “I don’t think when Tampa drafted Stamkos first overall in 2008 that they thought he’d be the fifth-best player on their Cup-winning teams, let alone that the other four would all be drafted after him — and by them — with picks 2, 19, 58 and 79. Pretty incredible what they built.”

Tampa has proved they can win without Stamkos and his $8.5 million cap hit for three more seasons poses issues for the Lightning. If they could get it off the books, they could save most of the players they are bound to lose.

Wild Haven’t Asked Parise and Suter To Waive Clauses

One important date to keep in mind is July 13th. This is the date that teams will have to ask players who have no-move clauses to waive them for the NHL Expansion Draft, if they’d like to leave those players exposes. As per Michael Russo of The Athletic, the Wild have yet to do so with two key players.

Ryan Suter Wild
Ryan Suter, Minnesota Wild, November 11, 2017. (Amy Irvin / The Hockey Writers)

He writes:

“As of now, I don’t get the impression that the #mnwild have asked Ryan Suter or Zach Parise to waive their no-moves for the purpose of expansion. Guerin hasn’t indicated he’d go that route, but if he does, deadline is tomorrow (protected lists must be submitted by Saturday).”

The Wild are a team that could lose a good player and have to be concerned about their blue line, potentially sacrificing Matt Dumba to Seattle. At this point, Dumba’s either getting traded or the Wild have settled into the idea that the $6 million in freed up cap space with Dumba gone can be used to try and replace him.

The other options for Seattle are likely Carson Soucy, Nico Sturm or a young goaltender.

Rangers Buy Out of DeAngelo

There’s some debate about when the New York Rangers will choose to buy out Tony DeAngelo. Some suggest the team will do so prior to the expansion draft while others think they’ll wait since there’s no chance Seattle takes him.

Mollie Walker of the New York Post writes that the Rangers are expected to buy him out instead of leaving him exposed on July 21st and since he’s under 26, a buyout will be only one-third of his contract. The Rangers will have a lot of dead cap space on their books, but DeAngelo will only be $383,000 next year and $883,000 the following year.

Tararsenko Landing Spots

NBC Sports Adam Gretz examined several possible teams Vladimir Tarasenko could be traded to after officially requesting a trade. Gretz suggests the New York Rangers, Edmonton Oilers, New Jersey Devils, Seattle Kraken and Nashville Predators as possibilities.

Some have wondered if he would be a good fit alongside Artemi Panarin on the Rangers top line, while Gretz suggests the Oilers should stop pursuing Duncan Keith and go for Tarasenko instead. The New Jersey Devils might be looking to shake up their blue line and have some big-name pieces available they could trade like P.K. Subban and the Kraken have a ton of cap space to give someone like Tarasenko a look.