Welcome to another edition of Full Press Hockey’s NHL Rumors! The 2022-23 season is over, and players and front offices will be evaluated. Now, the focus shifts toward the new season. Training camps have begun with preseason games taking place. Rosters will be finalized. Teams are always looking to improve, and the excitement of a new NHL season is upon us.
In this Sunday’s edition of NHL Rumors, we’ll examine the Ottawa Senators, Toronto Maple Leafs, and the Dallas Stars.
NHL rumors in this edition include:
How will the Sens get Shane Pinto signed? Is a blockbuster trade between the Maple Leafs and Anaheim Ducks in the works? A bold prediction for the Dallas Stars.
Ottawa Senators – Shane Pinto
Rumor: Per – Elliotte Friedman – sportsnet.ca. The gap widens between the Sens and Shane Pinto. According to several sources, the player was disappointed with a recent offer in the one-year, $1M range.
Pinto’s camp is seemingly demanding a contract in the $2.5 million AAV range with a two-year term. Something needs to happen with the season beginning in 10 days.
I don’t think I’ve ever been more pro-player in a contract negotiation than I am with Shane Pinto.
It’s completely insulting that the team basically doesn’t have room for him.
The boys all got paid. He’s asking for completely fair market value. Figure it out. #Sens
— Jack Richardson (@jackrichrdson) September 30, 2023
The Sens are trying to move another contract to make room, and per Friedman, they feel they’ll be able to do that—IF and only if they come to terms with Pinto on a deal first. It would seem sensible that forwards Mathieu Joseph and Dominik Kubalik could be used in a trade to get the Ottawa club in the salary cap range to pay Pinto. Joseph has a $2.95 million contract through the 2026-26 season. Of the two trade candidates, Joseph has not performed up to expectations, with only seven goals and 23 assists in 67 games in Ottawa.
It’s doubtful that the Senators would give up Kubalik, considering he tallied 20 goals and 25 assists in 81 games last season with the Detroit Red Wings. Another factor dismissing him from being traded is that he came to Ottawa in the Alex DeBrincat trade. Losing him now would not make any sense. We should know soon how this Pinto drama turns out. He wants to stay in Ottawa, and now management must make it happen.
Toronto Maples Leafs – Blockbuster trade?
Rumor: Per – Rob Ellis – nhltraderumor.com. The Toronto Maple Leafs must shed salary before the NHL season starts in 12 days. They are currently -$2,943,950 over the salary with LTIR being used. Would this proposed trade solve their cap issues?
The Maple Leafs will be scurrying to become cap-compliant and this proposed bold trade would give them $3.65 million in cap space. This would allow them to make other deals as the new season commences. Fasten your seat belt for this one.
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- Going from the Anaheim Ducks to the Maple Leafs would be defenseman Ilya Lyubushkin who has one year remaining on his $2.75M deal.
- Going from the Maple Leafs to the Ducks would be defensemen Timothy Liljegren ($1.4M) and T.J. Brodie ($5M).
Told you it would be bold…yet it could really work out best for both teams. The Leafs need to get cap compliant and giving up Lilejgren may hurt, but it would be necessary to make the deal work. Losing a veteran like Brodie on the blueline may not be popular either. With the news that defenseman Conor Timmins has been injured, adding another right-shot defenseman like Lyubushkin could become vital.
For the Ducks who have $16.6 million in cap space, the addition of Liljegren could be something they really could consider. We just don’t know if the Leafs will go for it. Speculation will be out there concerning this proposed trade, so stay tuned.
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Dallas Stars – Bold prediction
Rumor – Per Nathanial Duffett – clutchpoints.com. The Dallas Stars were two wins away from a Stanley Cup Final appearance last season. Will they win it all in 2023-24?
The Stars were oh-so-close to going to the Cup Final last season. They collected 108 points during the 2022-23 season with star performances from Jason Robertson, who exploded for a career-high 109 points, and Miro Heiskanen, who had 11 goals and 62 assists in 69 games last season and led the team with 25:29 of ice time per game.
They didn’t stay inactive over the offseason, either. The Stars added veteran forward Matt Duchene, who, along with Tyler Seguin, could cause some difficulty for opposing teams. The Stars also added Sam Steel and Craig Smith to their roster for good measure.
According to Duffett, Jake Oettinger took his performance in the playoffs personally and will come back this season looking to prove it was just a fluke. He had a 37-11-11 record last season with a .919 save percentage, 2.35 goals-against average, and five shutouts. Those stats make a Cup appearance very attractive for the Dallas club.
The Stars seem to have it all, and they must be considered a Stanley Cup favorite as the new 2023-24 is set to start soon. With returning stars like Jamie Benn (33-G, 45-A), ageless Joe Pavelski (28-G, 49-A), and Roope Hintz (37-G, 38-A), things are looking great in Dallas.
That concludes this edition of NHL rumors. Be sure to catch our next article, and thanks for reading!