The New Jersey Devils’ march to the Eastern Conference final has given rise to speculation left winger Zach Parise might not depart this summer via free agency after all.
Parise’s agent, Wade Arnott, recently told ESPN.com’s Craig Custance he’s unsure what effect this playoff run will have on his client’s off-season plans, but suggested it “probably bodes decently for the Devils.”
Parise, meanwhile, remains non-committal, but over the weekend told the New York Post the Devils current run “means a lot,” adding they have “a lot of good, young players who are going to be here a long time.”
If the Devils were to advance to the Stanley Cup final, or even win the Cup, it could certainly factor into where Parise plays after this season.
Devils GM Lou Lamoriello has made no secret of his desire to re-sign Parise, but it could come down to ownership’s willingness to invest a big-dollar, long-term contract in their captain, especially given the whispers of financial difficulties this season.
STAAL TO HURRICANES OR OILERS?
Uncertainty over center Jordan Staal’s future with the Pittsburgh Penguins has kept his name in the rumor mill.
Josh Yohe of the Pittsburgh Tribune-Review noted recent rumors out of Raleigh and Edmonton linking Staal to the Hurricanes and Oilers.
He suggested Carolina “makes sense on many levels,” not the least of which is Jordan’s older brother Eric is Carolina’s captain, while little brother Jared is in their system.
Yohe looked at other possible destinations, including the Oilers, Toronto Maple Leafs and Minnesota Wild and what those clubs could offer up to land Staal.
He claimed the Maple Leafs “are willing to deal” defenseman Luke Schenn, while young center Nazem Kadri might be of interest for the Penguins.
“Multiple reports” out of Edmonton suggest the Oilers might deal the first overall pick in this year’s entry draft for Staal, while Wild right wingers Cal Clutterbuck or Devin Setoguchi could be of interest to the Penguins.
Of course, this is mere speculation on Yohe’s part. Staal still has a year remaining on his contract and GM Ray Shero isn’t facing pressure to move him this summer.
It’s believed Shero will hold off on any significant roster moves until after the new CBA is implemented.
TOOTOO TRAIN LEAVING TOWN?
Long time Nashville Predators right winger Jordin Tootoo is eligible for unrestricted free agency this summer.
Following the Predators playoff elimination, GM David Poile said he’s willing to re-sign Tootoo, whose gritty, energetic style has made him a fan favorite in Nashville, but suggested it was ultimately the winger’s decision.
The Edmonton Journal‘s Jim Matheson believes Tootoo’s style would make him a welcome, affordable addition to the Oilers lineup.
The fact Tootoo only saw action in three playoff games this spring (and was clearly unhappy about his lack of playing time) will certainly factor in his plans.
Rumor Roundup appears Monday-Friday only on thehockeynews.com. Lyle Richardson has been an NHL commentator since 1998 on his website, spectorshockey.net, and is a contributing writer for Eishockey News and Kukla’s Korner.