Predators, Maple Leafs, Islanders, Flames

In today’s NHL rumors rundown, there are updates on a few teams when it comes to specific players. There is news on the Nashville Predators and Filip Forsberg, the Toronto Maple Leafs and Ilya Mikeyev, the New York Islanders and Semyon Varlomov, and the Calgary Flames and Johnny Gaudreau.

Predators and Forsberg Update

During the Hockey Night in Canada’s 32 Thoughts segment, Sportsnet’s Elliotte Friedman offered an update on Filip Forsberg’s contract extension talks with the Predators. The latest is that Forsberg’s agent, JP Barry has sat down and talked face-to-face with GM David Poille recently.

The specifics of that meeting are not known and it’s not clear if any progress was made on the new deal, but the fact the two sides are sitting down and trying to hash it out is a good sign.

Filip Forsberg Nashville Predators
Filip Forsberg, Nashville Predators (Amy Irvin/The Hockey Writers)

The Predators elected not to move Forsberg because they’d like him to stay and because their still fighting to make the playoffs this season. He’ll be instrumental in them doing so, if they can land a wild card spot.

Maple Leafs and Mikheyev Update

As per Sportsnet’s Luke Fox, the Maple Leafs won’t engage in contract discussions with winger Ilya Mikheyev until after the season. He’s been hot and cold the last few games. He’s got six points in his last nine outings but he hasn’t scored a point in five of those nine games.

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Still, Mikheyev is having a career year despite missing time due to an injury. He has 17 goals and nine assists in 45 games and he’s playing important and productive minutes on the penalty kill. He’s going to make more than the $1.645 million he’s currently being paid but the Leafs don’t feel it will cost them much more to wait out the season and see what he does in the playoffs.

Varlamov and Islanders Update

Kevin Kurz of The Athletic offered an update on the situation between the New York Islanders and goaltenders Ilya Sorokin and Semyon Varlamov. He believes the Islanders will give most of the starts to Sorokin to close this season and if he performs well, it could give the Islanders more confidence to move forward with him as the starter.

Ilya Sorokin New York Islanders
Ilya Sorokin, New York Islanders (Amy Irvin/The Hockey Writers)

If that happens, Kurz wonders what the Islanders will do with Varlamov. He believes they want to bring him back for another season but he might be better off filling other holes via a Varlamov trade and using someone else in tandem with Sorokin. Kurz writes:

Give Sorokin the ball, and see what he can do. If nothing else, it will be a good learning experience for a player who could end up as one of the future stars of the league in a very short order.

source – ‘Kurz: Islanders should lean heavily on Ilya Sorokin for the rest of the season’ – Kevin Kurz – The Athletic – 04/14/2022

Gaudreau and Flames Update

During in an interview with Sportsnet Flames GM Brad Treliving was asked about Johnny Gaudreau’s contract situation. Treliving confirmed that the two sides have talked, but have also chosen to “keep things quiet” during the season. Treliving said this is not an indication the Flames don’t want him back. In fact, Treliving said that the Flames will “move heaven and earth” and “do everything [they] possibly can to get Johnny back.”

Treliving doesn’t believe a winning formula comes from trading the team’s best players or to let the stars leave. The expectation is that Calgary will do what it can to make Gaudreau’s extension work, even if it comes to paying $9 million or more to get that deal done.

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