In today’s NHL rumor rundown, there is tons of speculation out of Nashville where only Pekka Rinne has a no-trade clause, there is buzz surrounding which teams might need a goaltender and speculated landing spots for Tampa Bay Lightning forward Ryan Callahan.
Predators to Make Changes
Pierre LeBrun of The Athletic writes that many are expecting changes out of Nashville where the Predators were disappointed in their season. LeBrun notes that comments from GM David Poile suggest some moves are on the horizon.
And I’m ready to go on for next year. I don’t know what’s going to happen exactly. Last year I pretty well said we weren’t going to make any changes. I’m not saying that this year. I’m also not saying we’re going to totally re-make our team. I’m just going to do my job, see who’s available, make some inquiries. If there’s opportunities to make our team better, I will do that. But certainly not in the mode of making a change for the sake of making a change.’’source – ‘LeBrun: Predators GM David Poile won’t sit on his hands this offseason’ – Pierre LeBrun- The Athletic – 05/20/2019
Among the changes, speculation is the Preds will look for more secondary scoring, they could be interested in pending UFA center Matt Duchene, and there have been talks of trading P.K. Subban.
Duchene is believed to be interested in playing for the Predators and if so, the team would just need to make room. That could be by clearing out Kyle Turris. Other trade candidates might be Craig Smith, Mikael Granlund, or Nick Bonino.
Jim Matheson of the Edmonton Journal tweeted that Ryan Ellis seems the most logical Nashville D to get traded for a forward but his $6.25 million per season is a lot of money over eight years and at the pace of a 40-point guy, is that fair value?
If the Predators decide that moving Turris is the best play, they may need to include a draft pick or prospect to entice a team. Nashville does not want to retain salary and his trade value is lower right now. A buyout would cost them roughly $2 million a season for the next 10 years.
Teams that Need a Goalie
Luke Fox of Sportsnet lists the Carolina Hurricanes, Columbus Blue Jackets, Edmonton Oilers, Chicago Blackhawks, Calgary Flames, Philadelphia Flyers, and New York Islanders as clubs that could use a goaltender for next season.
Fox suggests Petr Mrazek would be a goaltender to keep an eye on in free agency. That said, there is word the Hurricanes would like to keep him and lose Scott Darling.
The Blue Jackets will likely lose Sergei Bobrovsky, the Oilers need to bring in someone to support Mikko Koskinen, and the Blackhawks need a backup for Corey Crawford.
It is possible the Calgary Flames won’t bring back Mike Smith and it that’s the case, they’ll need some support for David Rittich similar to how the Flyers will need someone support for Carter Hart if Cam Talbot doesn’t return.
It is expected that the Islanders could need a replacement for Robin Lehner who might test free agency. That said, they are likely going to try and re-sign him.
Ryan Callahan’s Future Not Looking Good With Lightning
Knowing that, GM Julien BriseBois will likely have to make some cap room for the Tampa Bay Lightning, Tampa forward Ryan Callahan is aware of his chances of staying with the team aren’t great.
He told Joe Smith of The Athletic:
Obviously there’s a salary cap crunch, and it doesn’t take a scientist to figure out right now I’m on the outside looking in. Whatever happens, happens. But I was really happy with how I finished the year.source – ‘Five potential destinations for Ryan Callahan, who is ‘on the outside looking in’ with Lightning’ – Joe Smith – The Athletic – 05/20/2019
Smith lists the New Jersey Devils, Buffalo Sabres, Detroit Red Wings, Montreal Canadiens, and New York Rangers as possible options.
Jim Parsons is a senior THW freelance writer, part-time journalist and audio/video host who lives, eats, sleeps and breathes NHL news and rumors, while also writing features on the Edmonton Oilers. He’s been a trusted source for five-plus years at The Hockey Writers, but more than that, he’s on a mission to keep readers up to date with the latest NHL rumors and trade talk. Jim is a daily must for readers who want to be “in the know.”