In today’s NHL rumors, we discuss Mats Zuccarello and the Dallas Stars, the Philadelphia Flyers plans for the summer, how the Detroit Red Wings landed two big-time college free agents and the extension plans for Tampa Bay Lightning head coach Jon Cooper.
Dallas Stars and Zuccarello to Hold Off Talks
Matthew DeFranks of the Dallas Morning News is reporting that Mats Zuccarello and the Dallas Stars won’t talk contract extension until after the season ends. GM Jim Nill said, “We’ll wait until the season’s over.”
According to Nill, the lack of discussions is not exclusive to Zuccarello. “Right now, I’m in no rush with any contracts. I want to see how the team finishes, see what the player is. That stuff really kind of happens after the playoffs,” Nill explained.
Related: NHL Rumors: Senators, Flyers, Red Wings, Kings
Watch Out For Flyers This Summer
As per Darren Dreger on Ottawa’s TSN 1200, he expects the Philadelphia Flyers will make some noise this offseason. He explained, “… it doesn’t matter if it’s Brayden Point or it’s Mitch Marner or you want to go lower-end to Kasperi Kapanen or Andreas Johnsson, go down the list… But Philadelphia and Detroit are among those teams rumored to be in that hunt, looking for that type of possibility.”
Dreger said, should Panarin get to free agency (there are rumors his rights will be traded at the draft to a team who wants to sign him), he believes the Flyers would make a push to land him and they’ll also go after defenseman Erik Karlsson.
When talking about Flyers new GM Chuck Fletcher, “I think that anything is possible,” Dreger said.
Related: NHL Rumors: Islanders and Nelson, Wild and a Rebuild, NHL GM Meetings
Jon Cooper to Hit Coach Free Agency?
Could Jon Cooper be the next coach to hit free agency and make massive bucks? Pierre LeBrun wrote in The Athletic (subscription required) that he believes Cooper is making around $2.5 million this season and will be among the highest paid coaches in the NHL by this time next season.
Coach of the Year? No need to overthink it. @twolinepass lays out the easy case for Jon Cooper. https://t.co/U1Feg6eY0a
— Yahoo Sports NHL (@YahooSportsNHL) March 11, 2019
That said, LeBrun also believes the Tampa Bay Lightning will come to an extension with Cooper in the offseason and Cooper is simply hoping that he has a long run in the playoffs capped off by a Stanley Cup victory. If so, it only adds to his value and means an even bigger payday.
LeBrun also believes that Cooper leaving Tampa, in general, is unlikely.
If Cooper can win it all, LeBrun writes it’s huge for Cooper’s future. He explains:
Babcock, Quenneville, Julien and Trotz all signed those deals with a Stanley Cup on their resume, in Quenneville’s case three of them, and in Babcock’s case two Olympic gold medals to boot… So if Cooper signs his next deal with Tampa before the playoffs, he’s doing it without a Cup on his resume. If he waits until after the playoffs and Tampa does in fact win it all, well that might change things for him.
Expect the two sides to reach a deal after the season. If Tampa wins the Stanley Cup, this will just be icing on the cake for Cooper.
Detroit Signed Two Free Agents Thanks to the Rebuild
Craig Custance wrote in The Athletic he believes the reason Detroit was able to land both Princeton’s Ryan Kuffner and Michigan State’s Taro Hirose to entry-level contracts was that the team was going through a rebuild and that was attractive to the duo.
This provides a big opportunity for both players and it is expected they’ll join the Red Wings this week and stay with the team until the end of this season.
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