With rumors of the 2019-20 salary cap possibly being lower than the $83MM that teams initially expected, TSN’s Pierre LeBrun reports that an NHLPA spokesperson told him that there should be an announcement on the salary cap this evening.
With talks that the salary cap could be as low as $81.5MM, LeBrun writes that the NHLPA is taking their time to weigh that number. That number is expected to have a significant effect on teams, especially on those that are tight to the cap as that leaves them even less room to work with and could force teams to dump salaries even more than ever.
- LeBrun also tweets that the agent for Toronto Maple Leafs winger Mitch Marner, Darren Ferris, is expecting to hear from other teams on Wednesday, the day the RFA speaking period begins. With plenty of talks of high demands and a suggested willingness to sign an offer sheet, Toronto Maple Leafs general manager Kyle Dubas has his hands full. Dubas and Ferris did not meet this week in Vancouver and Ferris is expected to leave the draft for home, although there is plenty of time for both Dubas and Ferris to meet next week.
- While many fans of the Vegas Golden Knights have been looking forward to seeing KHL star forward Nikita Gusev play this season, TSN’s Darren Dreger suggests that the restricted free-agent may not end up getting the chance. With plenty of cap concerns, Vegas may not have enough money to sign the 26-year-old winger, and the Golden Knights may opt to trade him to relieve some of those cap issues. Dreger adds that multiple teams have inquired about Gusev, who currently would be penciled in on their third line and could be expendable for the right price. Gusev signed a one-year deal, $925K in April of this year, but he didn’t appear in a game for the Golden Knights. He won the KHL MVP award in 2018 and has scored 63 goals in the last three season for SKA St. Petersburg.
- The Athletic’s Craig Custance reports that he has heard there won’t be any deal between the Columbus Blue Jackets and unrestricted free agent center Matt Duchene before the speaking period opens on Sunday. While that isn’t a major surprise, of all the Blue Jackets’ big-named free agents, Duchene was their best hope to re-signing. However, especially after the recent P.K. Subban deal, it is believed that Nashville has become the front-runner for Duchene’s services.
- Bruce Garrioch of the Ottawa Sun reports that the San Jose Sharks would be open to moving defenseman Brendan Dillon for the right price. Dillon, who is currently slated to play on the top defensive pairing next to Brent Burns is making $3.27MM, but with significant cap issues coming this offseason, the team could use the extra cap room to try and make sure it can sign all of its top free agents, including restricted free agent Timo Meier, as well as unrestricted free agents Joe Pavelski, Joe Thornton, Joonas Donskoi and Gustav Nyquist, although the latter two are less likely to return.