The Kraken has been released – and may already have its tentacles on bigger deals.
With Seattle’s expansion draft picks coming up Wednesday morning, the player picks will be 32nd. The Kraken is said to have wrested Colin Blackwell from the Rangers , but the selection could result in a more significant move.
The blue shirts target veteran defender Mark Giordano, who was exposed by the flames and allegedly taken over by the Kraken in the expansion draft. Seattle, The Post has learned, is interested in Rangers striker Ryan Strome and may be willing to keep part of Giordano’s salary in order to secure a deal.
Strome, whose production has been (108 points in 126 games) rose with the help of the game alongside star Artemi Panarin, could also be part of the Rangers package for angry Sabers star Jack Eichel.
Despite rumors of a bigger deal, Seattle General Manager Ron Francis chose Blackwell over Julien Gauthier, whom he designed in Carolina. Blackwell made a name for himself in his 2020-21 Rangers’ debut season, scoring 12 goals and 10 assists in 47 games. In addition to his contagious work ethic and attitude, Blackwell comes up with a cheap cap hit of $ 725,000 before becoming an unrestricted free agent next summer.
According to several reports, the Islanders are expected to lose top winger Jordan Eberle to the Kraken. Eberle was one of the islands’ top 3 goalscorers last season with 16 goals and four more in the playoffs, but his departure will help the organization financially.
For Lou Lamoriello, who appears to be preparing for a big trade or signature, making room for the cap has been a priority this off-season. The Islanders general manager began shipping Nick Leddy and his $ 5.5 million cap hit to Detroit in exchange for Richard Panic and a 2021 second-round pick, then invited Andrew Ladd’s average annual score of 5, $ 5 million to the Coyotes over the next two seasons. along with a handful of tips to sweeten the business for zero return.
After the Kraken took over Eberle, who has three years left with an AAV of $ 5.5, Lamoriello has managed to get in Free $ 16.5 million in cap space in less than a week.
The Islanders now have around $ 17.6 million in cap space and can hit Johnny Boychuk’s $ 6 million cap – Add dollars over a long term injured reserve when the 2021-22 season kicks off in October. While there is suddenly a bit of space to work, Lamoriello still has to sign the restricted free agents Adam Pelech, Ilya Sorokin and Anthony Beauvillier.
Considering that Lamoriello chose to use two-thirds of the fourth « Identity » Line in Matt Martin and Cal Clutterbuck in the draft expansion, expect the pending unrestricted free agent Casey Cizikas to be brought back as well. July could be targeting. Zach Parise, whom Lamoriello drafted 17th for the Devils in 2003, is said to be on the islands radar after the veteran winger was bought out by Wild. To replace Leddy, Lamoriello could go after Ryan Suter – also bought by Minnesota – or Alec Martinez, the only left-handed defender expected to enter the UFA market with numbers similar to Leddy. Avalanche captain Gabriel Landeskog, who may also become a free agent, is also a possibility and would apparently fit perfectly into the top six of the Islanders.
Now that Eberle is gone, Lamoriello may already have a replacement in the house in Kyle Palmieri . The 30-year-old up-and-coming UFA played a major role in the Islanders’ second run to the Stanley Cup semi-finals and may be willing to hit a lower deal for one more try to win a championship on Long Island > In addition, the octopus is said to have caught Nathan Bastian of the Devils. Bastian, who signed a two-year extension with the Devils last month, is a young depth striker with energy and physicality. The 23-year-old scored three goals, seven assists and 136 goals in 41 games in the team last season.
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