NHL Rumors: Flames, Panthers, Blues, Oilers

In today’s NHL rumors rundown, the Calgary Flames and Florida Panthers pulled off a whopper of a trade on Friday and there are a few things worth noting when it comes to the deal. Meanwhile, what other teams were in on the Tkachuk trade discussions, and how close did the St. Louis Blues actually come to making a deal?

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Finally, if the Edmonton Oilers sign all of their RFAs, how will they become cap compliant?

Flames Don’t Have Deal in Place with Huberdeau

According to Andy Strickland, there is “No extension in place for Jonathan Huberdeau with Calgary.” This could turn out to be a big component of the trade that saw Matthew Tkachuk go to Florida and Huberdeau come back to the Flames, along with Mackenzie Weegar, Cole Schwindt, and a 1st round pick.

Jonathan Huberdeau Florida Panthers
Jonathan Huberdeau, Florida Panthers (Jess Starr/The Hockey Writers)

In fact, both Huberdeau and Weegar are in the final year of their current deals and there are no extensions in place for either right now. This is a great trade for Calgary when it comes to this upcoming season, but what happens if neither player signs an extension with the Flames? It appears the Flames are hoping they can discuss deals and sign one or both of these players in the coming months.

There was talk back in 2021 that perhaps Huberdeau had his eyes on the Montreal Canadiens and as a UFA next summer, he’ll have the chance to explore that option, should he so choose. Eric Francis of Sportsnet — who was all over the Tkachuk trade news — writes, “Given how few teams were in the mix, Treliving made out like a bandit. Sure, Weegar and Huberdeau are both UFAs (both Canadians FYI), if extension talks don’t go well they can be flipped at the deadline.”

Panthers Felt Term Better Given to Tkachuk

According to Greg Wyshynki of ESPN, the Florida Panthers had to decide whether the eight-year extension was better given to 29-year-old Huberdeau or 24-year-old Tkachuk. Wyshynski writes that it appears, with many other things being about equal, the Panthers went with the younger player.

Matthew Tkachuk Calgary Flames
Matthew Tkachuk, Calgary Flames (Amy Irvin / The Hockey Writers)

He writes:

“… surely was something that went into Florida’s thinking when deciding about making an eight-year commitment. Age is one of the few things that separates Tkachuk and Huberdeau on paper: Both are about 6-foot-2; both about 200 pounds, both are left wings, both have averaged about nine points for every 10 games played in their NHL careers. Huberdeau was the No. 3 pick in the 2011 draft, Tkachuk the No. 6 pick in the 2016 draft.”

As it stands now, the Panthers will likely have to move out some salary. They are over the cap and if they don’t place Anthony Duclair on LTIR, they could potentially try to trade him.

Hurricanes and Blues Were In on Trade Talks

As per Frank Seravalli of Daily Faceoff: “Sources say one of the teams that were in deepest in trade talks on Matthew Tkachuk (and also on his short list) over last few days: #Canes [Hurricanes]. Believe #stlblues [St. Louis Blues] were also in deep as well, but you can understand with another 100-point player in the mix, why Cats [Panthers] had the upper hand.”

The Athletic writes that the Blues’ offer just didn’t match up with the offer from the Panthers. Their article explains:

The Blues weren’t a lock to land Tkachuk, but it seemed promising. Ultimately, Florida put together a better package than Blues general manager Doug Armstrong could probably assemble. St. Louis’ Jordan Kyrou is talented, but his 75 points last season don’t match up to Huberdeau’s 115, and the Blues weren’t offering up a defenseman like Weegar, who finished eighth in the Norris Trophy voting two years ago.

source – ‘What we know about Flames trading Matthew Tkachuk to Panthers’ – The Athletic Staff – 07/23/2022

Oilers Trade Warren Foegele?

There is talk the Oilers might try and shop Warren Foegele in a trade. Jonathan Willis of The Athletic writes, that signing their three principle RFAs might cost around $7.5 million and they would be approximately $2 million over the cap while running a 22-man roster (assuming Smith & Klefbom on LTIR). He adds, ”Replacing Warren Foegele with a minimum-wage option would make Edmonton cap compliant.”

But, trading Foegele isn’t an easy thing to do, suggests Mark Spector of Sportsnet. Teams just aren’t taking on money and while Foegele isn’t being paid a lot, it could be argued his contract isn’t a value deal at $2.75 million per season. The Oliver Bjorkstrand trade shows just how little teams are getting if simply dumping salary.