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Rumour mill: Max Pacioretty’s name generates attention in the NHL
Max Pacioretty was unlucky last year, suffering two torn Achilles tendons.

His second injury in the space of just a few months put an end to his season, with the former CH captain set to play just five games in 2022-2023.

We wondered what his boo-boos meant for the future, because Pacioretty is 34 years old. It seems he wants to continue his career in the NHL…

And right now, his name is generating attention all over the league. Frank Seravalli isn’t ruling out a return to Carolina next season, but he’s also establishing the fact that the 2023 cohort of free agents allows him to be one of the intriguing players on the market.

It shouldn’t be too much of a problem for him to find a new deal for next year.

All that remains now is to see if he can stay healthy.

Flyers, aggressive… But not that aggressive

I’m a little surprised to hear Daniel Brière say out loud that we shouldn’t necessarily expect the Flyers to add another first-round pick to their bank.

After all, the club is entering a lengthy rebuild… And now is the time to liquidate the stock that’s still good.

It’s like a garage sale, really.

On the other hand, the Flyers’ new GM is right when he says it takes two to tango. That’s just a fact, and it can be difficult in the NHL to find a dance partner.

But, then again… With the club clearly out of the playoffs in the next few years, it sounds like I’d have liked to see them be more aggressive in their search on the trade market.

Blake Wheeler in Winnipeg may be over

In the NHL, it’s pretty rare to see a team take the captaincy away from one of its players… And yet, the Jets did it last year with Blake Wheeler.

The veteran always said he understood the decision, but in the end, it must still be a bit hard to swallow.

In Winnipeg, there’s no telling what’s in store for the team in the near future. Pierre-Luc Dubois is on his way out, as is Connor Hellebuyck…

And Mark Scheifele will be eligible for full autonomy in the summer of 2024. And the same applies to Wheeler.

In fact, the former Jets captain and the team are currently working on the possibility of buying him out. It would be a mutual agreement to allow Wheeler to sign a contract elsewhere, surely to give him the opportunity to win a Stanley Cup before retiring…

Because no one will be interested in trading for his $8.25 million contract next season.

Good veterans available this summer

Nick Foligno, Corey Perry, Erik Johnson, Paul Stastny, Zach Parise, Marc Staal, Phil Kessel, Milan Lucic and Ryan Reaves.

These players all have at least one thing in common. They’re aging, but they still have the potential to help an NHL team next season.

Of course, it would be a bit surprising to see these guys sign a new deal with a team that doesn’t aspire to the big time. Unless they absolutely want to play a mentoring role with a team that’s rebuilding, it simply doesn’t make sense.

It’s often said that veterans are important to a team, especially in the playoffs. The players named above could become low-risk bets for some NHL clubs…

And we should expect these guys, because of their experience, to receive (at least) a professional invitation to some NHL camps.

For those wondering: no, I don’t see any in particular in Montreal… Except maybe Corey Perry, who already loves the city.

In bursts

– Finally!

– That’s saying a lot.

– It’s a great challenge.

– I’m looking forward to it.

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