Today’s cap-shedding trade by the Kings has sparked speculation that the move was made to make room for an agreement with defenseman Vladislav Gavrikov. That deal isn’t in place and if it does get done, it might be a shorter-term deal than expected. Pierre LeBrun of TSN and The Athletic reports (Twitter link) that Gavrikov’s camp has told Los Angeles that they’re looking for a two-year contract. Considering that Gavrikov is 27 and in his prime, it feels like this is the right time to look for a long-term agreement. However, the blueliner is coming off a bit of a quiet year and the salary cap is expected to start going up more after next season so Gavrikov could be positioning himself to have a shot at a bigger payday in a couple of years compared to what he could get this summer.
More from the Western Conference:
- The Predators announced that they have reached an affiliation agreement with ECHL Atlanta for next season. It will be the fourth straight season that the Gladiators have a new affiliate after having Boston, Ottawa, and Arizona over the last three years. Nashville, meanwhile, was one of four NHL teams this season that did not have a direct ECHL affiliation.
- Gary Bettman’s recent confirmation that the Upper Limit of the salary cap is only set to go up by $1MM isn’t ideal for most teams but Kurt Leavins of the Edmonton Journal argues that it at least gives the Oilers some certainty as it pertains to defenseman Evan Bouchard. The 23-year-old is coming off his second straight season of at least 40 points and was quite productive in the playoffs, notching 17 points in 12 games; he still leads all playoff blueliners in scoring despite being ousted in the second round. With Edmonton’s cap situation, they’re basically stuck doing a bridge contract with Bouchard, an outcome that’s basically cemented with the recent cap confirmation.