NHL Rumors: Blackhawks, Kraken, Hurricanes, Avalanche, Oilers, Wild…

In today’s NHL rumors, are there a handful of teams surfacing as clubs that could be ready to make side deals with the Seattle Kraken ahead of the NHL Expansion Draft. What might the Edmonton Oilers, Carolina Hurricanes, Minnesota Wild and Colorado Avalanche do? Finally, Andrew Shaw has called it a career and retired from the NHL. He sent out a touching thank you video.

Andrew Shaw Retires

Shaw had to make a difficult decision as the 29-year-old announced his official retirement from the NHL on Monday. He shared an emotional video thanking everyone that got him to this point in his career, but with multiple concussions and based on the advice of medical professionals, he’s hanging up his skates.

While his career wasn’t a long one, it was decorated and impactful for a player passed over twice in the NHL Draft. He recorded 116 goals and 247 points in 544 career NHL games and won two Stanley Cup teams in 2013 and 2015 with the Blackhawks.

Seattle Side Deals

The Athletic’s Pierre LeBrun and Ryan S. Clark recently took a look at teams that could try and work with the Kraken and sway their expansion draft decisions. The scribes listed the Carolina Hurricanes, Colorado Avalanche, Edmonton Oilers, Florida Panthers, Minnesota Wild and Tampa Bay Lightning as six clubs that could be in play to make side deals.

Oilers and Klefbom

As for the Oilers, they’ll need to wait to see about the health of defenseman Oscar Klefbom. LeBrun writes:

The Oilers are understood to accept the fact they will lose one of their six defensemen under contract for next season. But they have braced for that by developing prospects Evan Bouchard, Philip Broberg and Dmitri Samorukov. Where it becomes even more complicated is what happens with pending UFAs Tyson Barrie and Adam Larsson. The Oilers are understood to have already had some talks with a few of their pending UFAs with the idea they could agree to new contracts before the draft. 

source – ‘Seattle Kraken expansion draft: 6 teams in play to make a side deal’ – Pierre LeBrun and Ryan S. Clark -The Athletic – 04/21/2021
Edmonton Oilers general manager Ken Holland
Edmonton Oilers general manager Ken Holland (THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jason Franson)

In other Oilers news, head coach Dave Tippett says Mike Smith is fine and good to go after an injury scare, while Dmitry Kulikov is expected to play today. Jesse Puljujarvi has been out for a few days for precautionary reasons, but should be in the lineup and Ryan McLeod may play, but could sit one more game before getting the call.

Related: Oilers Could Correct Ryan Strome Trade Mistake This Offseason

Hurricanes and Hamilton

LeBrun also notes that the Kraken could have their sights set on defenseman Dougie Hamilton, who will have a week to sign with the Hurricanes as a pending unrestricted free agent. If he isn’t signed before the July 21 expansion draft he could sign an exclusive free-agent deal with Seattle during the interview window (July 18-21), making the blueliner part of their expansion draft selections.

LeBrun writes, “What I believe Carolina will do here is wait until after the expansion draft to make another offer to Hamilton so that they can protect Jake Bean, along with no-brainers Jaccob Slavin and Brett Pesce.”

Avs to Make a Trade?

Clark writes that the Avalanche are expected to explore a potential trade of one of their forwards as long as they can receive something substantial in return. Speculation is they are open to talking with the Kraken about that before hitting up the rest of the market to make a move.

Ryan Graves Colorado Avalanche
Ryan Graves, Colorado Avalanche (Jess Starr/The Hockey Writers)

Talk is the Avs will try to get veteran defenseman Erik Johnson to waive his no-movement clause. Doing that allows them to protect Devon Toews. Part of the issue is that Colorado needs to find a way to protect both blueliner Ryan Graves and defenseman Jacob MacDonald. No matter what format they choose, one of those guys is vulnerable.

Wild to Talk to Players and No-Move Clauses

Speculation is that the Wild will start asking their players who have NMCs to waive them after the season comes to a close. Clark writes:

Jonas Brodin, Zach Parise, Jared Spurgeon, Ryan Suter and Mats Zuccarello are the five players with NMCs. Getting at least two of them to waive their clauses allows the team to potentially retain defenseman Matt Dumba and forward Jordan Greenway.