NHL Rumors: Oilers, Blackhawks, Flames, Kraken, Islanders, More

In today’s NHL rumors rundown, there is a lot more chatter about the Edmonton Oilers and Chicago Blackhawks trade talk as it pertains to Duncan Keith and how each team might be approaching a possible deal. Meanwhile, could the Calgary Flames be interested in Jack Eichel while they’re forced to make a decision on Johnny Gaudreau? Finally, the New York Islanders have talked to Kyle Palmieri about an extension. Is one likely?

Details on Keith to Oilers Trade Talk

We’ve been covering speculation over the last couple of days that the Chicago Blackhawks are trying to help facilitate a trade for Duncan Keith. There are updates to this story as the Oilers have emerged as the clear frontrunner.

First, the Blackhawks are not simply giving Keith away. According to multiple sources, any talk that Chicago might take a bad contract back and retain salary isn’t accurate. While the team might do one of those things, they are also trying not to do either. Chicago wants space to add a player in free agency or trade for Seth Jones.

Duncan Keith (Amy Irvin / The Hockey Writers)

Second, there is also word from Daniel Nugent-Bowman of The Athletic that the Oilers are not willing to add Keith at any cost. They know Chicago sees him as a “legacy player” and won’t give him away, but they have other plans that they aren’t prepared to steer off course from to add Keith, who they do like in theory on the left side in their second-pair.

Nugent-Bowman writes:

Having the money nearly equal out in a deal for Keith is all but a necessity for the Oilers, the source said. The Oilers are planning to make a push to get better this offseason, building around their core of Nurse, Connor McDavid and Leon Draisaitl. But the source said the Oilers are still not interested in trading away top prospects.

source -‘Source: Oilers are interested in trading for Blackhawks defenceman Duncan Keith — at a price’ – Daniel Nugent-Bowman – The Athletic – 07/02/2021

The Oilers have potentially pegged James Neal, Zack Kassian and Mikko Koskinen as players they’d be willing to move to send out salary. Edmonton is also aware this deal could cost them Caleb Jones, if they’re to make the money part all work out.

The Seattle Kraken are also rumored to be a team that might have interest in Keith, should this thing with the Oilers not work out.

Related: Maple Leafs Should Target Brandon Saad in Free Agency

Flames Decision on Gaudreau, Plus Jack Eichel Trade?

According to the Calgary Sun’s Wes Gilbertson, the Flames are facing an interesting decision when it comes to forward Johnny Gaudreau. The player has said he’s open to signing an extension with the team, but there are still rumors the Flames might be looking to move him as part of the overall roster change over many are expecting to see.

Johnny Gaudreau Calgary Flames
Johnny Gaudreau, Calgary Flames (Amy Irvin / The Hockey Writers)

Gilbertson writes:

Gaudreau’s current deal, with an annual salary cap-hit of $6.75 million US, expires at the end of this coming season. What makes this matter more urgent is his modified no-trade clause kicks in July 28, allowing him to veto a swap to all but five squads of his choosing.

source — ‘Top 10 questions facing the Flames during a jam-packed July’ – Wes Gilbertson – Calgary Sun – 07/02/2021

Gilbertson says the first thing general manager Brad Treliving needs to do is find out how much Gaudreau is seeking on an extension. If he wants too much and the numbers won’t work, “it’s time to seriously consider trade offers.”

Gilbertson also suggests the Flames might be trying to work a side deal with the Seattle Kraken to avoid losing Mark Giordano, and he notes the team could be interested in 24-year-old Sabres captain Jack Eichel via trade. The scribe thinks the Sabres asking price could start with wingers Matthew Tkachuk and Andrew Mangiapane plus a promising player and more.

Islanders Have Talked to Palmieri

Islanders GM Lou Lamoriello acknowledged that he has spoken with forward Kyle Palmieri regarding an extension and says the team expressed interest in having the forward return. The Islanders might have the room to re-sign him if It the Kraken select one of Jordan Eberle or Nick Leddy in the expansion draft, removing $5.5 million in cap space.

Andrew Gross of Newsday quotes Lamoriello:

“Would we like to have Kyle Palmieri back? The answer is yes. I have had a conversation with Kyle and I have asked him if he would want to come back if there was something that potentially could be worked out and his answer was yes. He also knows our set of circumstances with reference to our cap and our roster. We, potentially, cannot keep every player because we can only protect so many.”

source – ‘Islanders GM Lou Lamoriello: Keeping free agents Casey Cizikas and Kyle Palmieri will be difficult’ – Andre Gross – Newsday – 06/29/2021