Report: Canucks trading Schmidt to Jets

The Vancouver Canucks are sending blue-liner Nate Schmidt to the Winnipeg Jets in exchange for a 2022 third-round pick, reports TSN's Darren Dreger.

Schmidt needs to waive his no-trade clause to facilitate the deal, Dreger adds.

There are four seasons remaining on the 30-year-old's contract, which carries an annual cap hit of $5.95 million, according to CapFriendly.

The Canucks acquired Schmidt from the Vegas Golden Knights last offseason for a 2022 third-round pick, meaning Vancouver essentially rented him for one year.

His lone season with the Canucks didn't go as planned, as he recorded just 15 points over 54 games, and Schmidt's underlying numbers plummeted.

Prior to joining the Canucks, Schmidt enjoyed a stellar three-year run with the Golden Knights, averaging 41 points per 82 games.

If he can return to that form, Winnipeg's blue line should improve vastly next season, as the club also acquired Brenden Dillon from the Washington Capitals on Monday.

Here's the Jets' current blue-line depth chart:

LD RD
Josh Morrissey Neal Pionk*
Brenden Dillon Nate Schmidt
Logan Stanley* Dylan DeMelo
Ville Heinola Sami Niku
Dylan Samberg

*Restricted free agent

Winnipeg's defense has been a weak area since the 2019 offseason when the team lost Jacob Trouba, Dustin Byfuglien, Tyler Myers, and Ben Chiarot.

The Canucks, meanwhile, are likely looking to clear cap space to re-sign pending restricted free agents Elias Pettersson and Quinn Hughes. Hughes, Myers, and the newly acquired Oliver Ekman-Larsson are the only proven commodities currently under team control on Vancouver's blue line.

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Notable NHL Free-Agent Signings – July 27, 2021

Notable NHL Free-Agent Signings – July 27, 2021 With the NHL free-agent market opening at noon ET on July 28, there’s a flurry of last-minute contract signings taking place. Some involved unrestricted free agents while others are restricted free agents. Here’s the rundown of today’s notable signings. Washington Capitals signed left winger Alex Ovechkin to […]

Report: Golden Knights trading Fleury to Blackhawks

The Vegas Golden Knights are dealing Marc-Andre Fleury to the Chicago Blackhawks, reports ESPN's Emily Kaplan.

Vegas isn't retaining any of the reigning Vezina Trophy winner's salary, and the only player Chicago is trading for him is AHL forward Mikael Hakkarainen, Kaplan adds.

Fleury's agent, Allan Walsh, confirmed the Golden Knights didn't inform the goaltender of the move, and he said Fleury will need to consider his next step.

Fleury found out about the trade on Twitter, reports The Athletic's Jesse Granger.

The 36-year-old is under contract through next season at a $7-million cap hit, according to CapFriendly.

Fleury had one of his best seasons in 2021, posting a career-high .928 save percentage while going 26-10-0 with six shutouts over 36 games. He led all NHL netminders with 19.2 goals saved above expected at all strengths in 2021, and ranked fourth with an 11.74 GSAx at five-on-five, according to Evolving Hockey.

The 17-year veteran was one of the faces of the Golden Knights franchise, helping Vegas make an improbable run to the Stanley Cup Final in the club's inaugural season of 2017-18. He spent the last four campaigns with the Golden Knights after playing the previous 13 with the Pittsburgh Penguins, with whom he won three championships.

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Report: Canucks, Schmidt’s agent working on trade

Nate Schmidt and the Vancouver Canucks are trying to arrange his departure.

Canucks general manager Jim Benning and Schmidt's agent, Matt Keator, have been collaborating to facilitate a trade for the defenseman, reports TSN's Pierre LeBrun.

The team and the player's camp are hoping to find a deal for him before the NHL's free-agency period begins Wednesday, LeBrun adds.

Schmidt, who reportedly has a 10-team no-trade list, is under contract through 2024-25 at a $5.95-million cap hit, according to CapFriendly.

The Winnipeg Jets have tried to land the 30-year-old multiple times this offseason, but he's unwilling to waive his no-trade clause for the club, reports the Winnipeg Sun's Scott Billeck. Schmidt also apparently declined to be dealt to the Jets in 2020 when he was with the Vegas Golden Knights.

Vegas traded Schmidt to Vancouver for a third-round pick in October.

The Canucks have about $21 million in cap space, but franchise players Elias Pettersson and Quinn Hughes both need new contracts, as does recent trade acquisition Conor Garland, among many others on Vancouver's roster. The team absorbed $7.26 million of Oliver Ekman-Larsson's $8.25-million cap hit upon acquiring him from the Arizona Coyotes on Friday.

Schmidt collected five goals and 10 assists while averaging just over 20 minutes of ice time in 54 games for the Canucks this past season.

He played three seasons with the Golden Knights after they selected him in their expansion draft. Schmidt played his first four campaigns with the Washington Capitals, who signed him as an undrafted free agent in 2013.

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Capitals trade Dillon to Jets for pair of 2nd-rounders

The Washington Capitals traded blue-liner Brenden Dillon to the Winnipeg Jets for a second-round pick in 2022 and 2023, the teams announced Monday.

Dillon, 30, has three years left on his contract, which carries a $3.9-million annual cap hit. He registered two goals and 17 assists in 56 games this past season while averaging 18:57 of ice time, but the 6-foot-4, 225-pound rearguard is known more for his defensive abilities.

The British Columbia native isn't afraid to throw his weight around, racking up 143 hits last season, but he's also posted strong underlying numbers over the past three campaigns.

Evolving-Hockey.com

Dillon will also arrive in Winnipeg with some familiarity. Prior to joining the Capitals at the 2019 trade deadline, Dillon spent parts of six seasons with the San Jose Sharks, where he was often paired with current Jets defenseman Dylan DeMelo.

Winnipeg has been trying to rebuild it's blue line since it lost Dustin Byfuglien, Jacob Trouba, Tyler Myers, and Ben Chiarot in the 2019 offseason.

With Dillon entering the fold, here's the Jets' current blue-line depth chart:

LD RD
Josh Morrissey Neal Pionk*
Brenden Dillon Dylan DeMelo
Logan Stanley*
Ville Heinola
Dylan Samberg

*RFA

The Jets could still add one more right-handed defenseman if they aren't comfortable putting one of their young left-handed blue-liners on their off side. The club projects to have nearly $20 million in cap space, but in addition to Pionk and Stanley, Andrew Copp is also an RFA.

Meanwhile, the Capitals were likely looking to create some cap flexibility. The team has $13.6 million in projected cap space now but still needs to re-sign Alex Ovechkin and could add a netminder to pair with RFA Ilya Samsonov. Michal Kempny, who missed the entire 2020-21 campaign recovering from an Achilles tear, could step in and fill Dillon's shoes.

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Nick Ritchie, Pius Suter among players who didn’t receive qualifying offers

A number of notable players did not receive qualifying offers prior to Monday's 5 p.m. ET deadline and are now unrestricted free agents.

The Boston Bruins announced they did not make a qualifying offer to forward Nick Ritchie, which would have been $2 million, per CapFriendly. Boston also did not extend a qualifying offer to forward Ondrej Kase.

Ritchie, 25, had an impressive year with the Bruins in his first full campaign with the club. He scored 15 goals and added 11 assists in 56 games. Kase, 25, only appeared in nine regular-season games with Boston over the past two seasons due to injury.

The Chicago Blackhawks announced they didn't extend qualifying offers to Pius Suter, Adam Gaudette, David Kampf, and Josh Dickinson. Shortly after the deadline, the team inked Gaudette to a one-year contract worth $997.5K, according to The Athletic's Mark Lazerus.

Suter, 25, finished his first year in the NHL after coming from Switzerland. He had 14 goals and 13 assists in 55 games.

Other notable names who did not receive qualifying offers include Edmonton Oilers forwards Dominik Kahun and Jujhar Khaira, San Jose Sharks forward Ryan Donato, New York Islanders forward Michael Dal Colle, and Anaheim Ducks forward Danton Heinen.

All players who did not receive qualifying offers will hit the open market on Wednesday, but a deal can still come to fruition with their respective clubs beforehand.

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Jets re-sign Stastny to 1-year, $3.75M deal

The Winnipeg Jets re-signed forward Paul Stastny to a one-year contract worth $3.75 million, the team announced Monday.

Stastny, 35, scored 13 goals and added 16 assists last season. It was his first campaign back with the club after spending two seasons with the Vegas Golden Knights. Stastny played with the Jets for 19 regular-season games in 2018 when he was acquired at the trade deadline.

At five-on-five last season, Stastny ranked third among Jets skaters with a 49.89 Corsi For rating and fourth with a 49.69 expected goals for percentage.

Stastny provides the Jets with considerable depth down the middle, with Mark Scheifele, Pierre-Luc Dubois, and Adam Lowry also in the mix. Stastny was moved to the wing at times last season.

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