Buffalo Sabres, Carolina Hurricanes, Edmonton Oilers, Erik Karlsson, NHL Rumors, Nick Robertson, Owen Power, Rasmus Dahlin, Toronto Maple Leafs

NHL Rumors: Sabres, Hurricanes, Oilers, Maple Leafs

In today’s NHL rumors rundown, the Buffalo Sabres are brushing off rumors that the Jake Sanderson deal in Ottawa is going to greatly affect their negotiations with Owen Power and Rasmus Dahlin. Meanwhile, are the Edmonton Oilers likely to trade their first-round pick in 2024? Will Nick Robertson have much of an impact on the 2023-24 season for the Toronto Maple Leafs? Finally, the Carolina Hurricanes have publicly acknowledged trying to trade for Erik Karlsson.

Sabres Aren’t Concerned With Sanderson’s Deal

Sabres GM Kevyn Adams might have experienced some unease upon learning of Jake Sanderson’s hefty eight-year, $64.4 million extension with Ottawa. This situation becomes even more intriguing with Rasmus Dahlin and Owen Power both approaching the end of their contracts. According to Pierre LeBrun of The Athletic, Adams “brushed it off.”

Owen Power Buffalo Sabres
Owen Power, Buffalo Sabres (Amy Irvin / The Hockey Writers)

LeBrun quoted Adams who said, “I think no matter what when you see contracts around the league, you’re always paying attention because obviously there’s comps. The Sabres had already forecasted what potential deals other players might look like, so the Sanderson deal wasn’t a huge shock. He explained:

“We started conversations early in the offseason with (both Dahlin and Power) and continued all through the summer. We continue to talk now and they’ve been really positive. So it’s something that we’re still going to work on here over the next couple of weeks.”

source – ‘LeBrun and Russo: Are Hellebuyck and Scheifele staying put? Plus other rumblings from NHL GM meetings’ – Pierre LeBrun – The Athletic – 09/08/2023

Hurricanes Acknowledge They Took a Shot to Land Karlsson

LBrun also reported that the Carolina Hurricanes were highly active in their pursuit of Erik Karlsson, a deal they pursued aggressively from late June to early July. Their bold approach is characteristic of the Hurricanes, known for their willingness to make significant moves.

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Veteran Hurricanes GM Don Waddell said, “We put our best foot forward (on Karlsson) and obviously it wasn’t good enough.” He emphasized their proactive approach to trades and free agency over the years, acknowledging that while some efforts work out, others don’t.

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Instead, the team secured top unrestricted free-agent defenseman Dmitry Orlov and is now talking about extensions or trades for two key defensemen, Brett Pesce and Brady Skjei. While discussions may have slowed in August, September brings renewed hope for progress in securing these crucial defensive assets.

Is the Oilers’ First-Round 2024 Pick in Play?

Oilers Now host Bob Stauffer was talking to Daily Faceoff’s Frank Servalli on his show this week and said there was a 97% chance the team will be trading their 2024 first-round pick in March. He noted, “Keep an eye on the Oilers right side. That might give us a little bit of an indication as to what the team may or may not need..if they end up moving that 1st Rd pick.”

Don’t Expect Nick Robertson To Make Impact With Maple Leafs This Season

Nick Robertson’s path with the Toronto Maple Leafs has been influenced by waiver-exempt status, as he was sent to the AHL’s Marlies last season despite deserving an NHL spot. This season, as the Leafs grapple with salary cap constraints, the 22-year-old remains exempt from waivers and seeks to return after a shoulder injury halted his 2022 campaign.

Related: 2023-24 Maple Leafs Lineup Far Different Than Last Season

As Luke Fox of Sportsnet points out, Toronto’s left-wing depth chart presents a competitive field, with Robertson vying against Tyler Bertuzzi, Max Domi, Matthew Knies, and Sam Lafferty. Among them, only Knies enjoys waiver exemption, making his NHL prospects enticing.

It’s likely that GM Brad Treliving will allow Robertson to rebuild his strength and confidence in the minors before a potential mid-season call-up. Injuries are a reality, and Robertson, in a contract year, has much to prove as the Leafs assess his future in the organization. Health permitting, he’ll have another opportunity to stake his claim in the NHL.

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