In today’s NHL rumors rundown, the Minnesota Wild and Kirill Kaprizov may have settled on the terms of a new deal. Meanwhile, the New York Islanders finally announced the signings of four of their players. What’s the hold up on the other two? Tomas Hertl and the San Jose Sharks are not looking at an extension as both sides want to see how the season plays out and as the Montreal Canadiens take their time to figure out what they’ll do about the Jesperi Kotkaniemi offer, it is believed the Hurricanes already have a long-term extension in play for the center.
Wild Close on Deal With Kaprizov
As per Michael Russo of The Athletic, during an appearance on KFAN (audio link), he believes the Minnesota Wild and Kaprizov have settled on a five-year extension with a price tag around the $9 million per season mark. Obviously, this deal is not official until the team announces it as such and that announcement may not come imminently says Russo.
The two sides are still hammering out the year-to-year structure of the deal, which includes the back or front loaded aspects of the deal, signing bonuses, trade protection and more. If a five-year deal, it would give Minnesota two extra years of team control beyond Kaprizov’s RFA years.
Sharks Will Wait to Sign Hertl
Per a report by Kevin Kurz of The Athletic, the Sharks and pending unrestricted free agent in center Tomas Hertl will wait before signing an extension.
“From Wilson’s perspective, one way to speed up the reset would be putting Hertl and his expiring contract on the market, as he is probably their most valuable trade chip if they are looking to acquire more draft picks and/or prospects. Contending teams would almost certainly start blowing up Wilson’s phone were that to happen, as big, skilled centers rarely become available.source – ‘Sharks, Tomas Hertl may both be better off waiting before talking extension’ – Kevin Kurz – The Athletic – 08/30/2021
Kurz adds that the Sharks will want to see how this season goes before deciding if they are in a full rebuild mode or not. Kurz notes, “A Hertl trade would almost undoubtedly seal the Sharks’ fate as a playoff-less team for the third straight season, but it also might speed up their plan to return to respectability sooner than later, particularly if an NHL-ready young player or at least someone close to being ready is included in the hypothetical deal.”
The downside is that Hertl may elect not to sign if the Sharks don’t have a strong season and like anytime you give a player time to look at his options, he might find something more appealing. As is stands now, the last comments from Hertl on his future with the Sharks came on May 10th when he said he’d like to stay with the team. Still, speculation is that he was unhappy with how the team was run this past season so perhaps things have changed.
Islanders Sign Four, Still Haven’t Announced Parise and Zajac
The New York Islanders have announced new deals for Kyle Palmieri, Casey Cizikas, Anthony Beauvillier and Ilya Sorokin. Insiders have known these deals were done some time ago but the Islanders chose not to make the extensions official until now. Interestingly, two other players who are expected to have also signed deals with the team are Zach Parise and Travis Zajac, but their contracts have not been announced.
When asked why he chose to extend for four years, Palmieri said, “It’s a collection of everything. It comes down to the fans, how passionate they, how excited they are to watch this team play. Then inside the room and being around these guys every day, it’s a special group and I’m just fortunate enough to have a place here.”
Cizikas said of his six-year extension, “Long Island is my home and will always be my home.” James Nichols of THW writes, “For the record, the #SeaKraken were throwing $5M/year at Cizikas. This speaks to how far the #isles have come as an organization.”
As for why the Parise and Zajac deals have not been announced, Russo writes, “Not sure why Parise wasn’t announced with the others, but as Arthur and I have reported all summer, I’m pretty sure he too will be joining the Isles. Just not announced yet.” The rumored deal is a one-year contract and around league minimum.
Hurricanes Already Have Long-Term Deal Tabled for Koktaniemi
One of the questions many people asked about the Hurricanes offer sheet to Kotkaniemi was why they’d be so open to signing the player to an overpayment. Elliotte Friedman believes it’s because the team has already talked to the center about a long-term deal that will keep him in Carolina if the offer isn’t matched.
That deal would be for less than the $6.1 million per season they threw out on the one-year offer and because the Hurricanes were within their rights to talk to the player about a long-term extension, it is believed that discussion was had and terms agreed to before the offer sheet was ever made.
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.”