NHL Power Rankings: Top storylines for 2021-22 season (Part 1)

NHL Power Rankings
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In this week’s edition of the NHL Power Rankings we begin counting down the 30 biggest storylines to watch across the league for the 2021-22 season.

We will look at 10 storylines over the next three Mondays, counting down toward the NHL’s biggest storylines.

We begin today with Nos. 30-21 including the Devils, Elvis Merzlikins, the Stars, divisional alignments, and the return of fans.

What stories make the list this week?

To this week’s NHL Power Rankings!

30. Devils taking another shot. Say this for the Devils: They are not afraid to try. A couple of years ago they were one of the NHL’s busiest teams and attempted to load up with big acquisitions like P.K. Subban, Nikita Gusev, and Wayne Simmonds coming into join Taylor Hall, Nico Hischier, and top pick Jack Hughes. It did not really work. At all. And a lot of the players from that team are now gone. But armed with a ton of salary cap space this offseason the Devils were again fairly busy, making one of the biggest free agent splashes of the summer with Dougie Hamilton while also adding Tomas Tatar, Ryan Graves, and Jonathan Bernier to the roster.

Will that be enough to make a difference in a tough Metropolitan Division? A lot will depend on how big of a jump they can get from Hughes, Hischier, and Mackenzie Blackwood in goal.

[Related: Every free agent signing by all 32 NHL teams]

29. Elvis Merzlikins wants to win Vezina. The Blue Jackets were rocked by tragedy this summer when goalie Matiss Kivlenieks died in a fireworks accident on July 4. Goaltender Elvis Merzlikins credited Kivlenieks for saving his life during the incident and has made it his goal to win a Vezina Trophy in his friend’s honor.

“I don’t want to make any promises, but I can tell you … my plan is to win a Vezina Trophy,” Merzlikins told The Athletic earlier this offseason. “I’m gonna win a … Vezina for him. We can’t make promises because this is hockey and we don’t know how the season can go, but this is my goal. I believe I’m going to reach it.”

Merzlikins is also honoring Kivlenieks with a new mask design.

28. Old division alignments and playoff format. After a one-year break the NHL is returning to its normal divisional alignments and playoff format for the 2021-22 season. That means no more all-Canadian division, the return of the wild cards, and no more play-in rounds.

The 2019-20 playoff format and the 2020-21 season produced some wildly unexpected results that almost certainly would have never taken place in a normal season, from the Blackhawks’ appearance in the 2020 postseason to the Canadiens’ stunning run to the 2021 Stanley Cup Final. The only major change taking place this season is the Coyotes shifting from the Pacific to the Central Division and being replaced out west by Seattle. That is bad news for Arizona (the Central is far tougher) and good news for a Kraken team trying to make an immediate impact in the NHL.

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27. What direction are the Canucks going? One of the more confusing teams in the NHL right now. They have a sensational young core to build around and they did make some intriguing additions this offseason with Jason Dickinson and Conor Garland, as well as the arrival of Vasili Podkolzin. But the defense still has some major questions, and the depth is still a question. They play in the weakest division in the NHL which should give them a shot at the playoffs, but their ceiling still seems to be a mystery as does their overall plan.

26. Can Dallas rebound? The Stars were knocking on the door of the Stanley Cup during the 2018-19 and 2019-20 postseasons, even reaching the Cup Final in 2020. And then things fell apart this past season with a fifth place finish in the modified Central Division, keeping them out of the playoffs entirely. Injuries played a huge role in that as Tyler Seguin and Alexander Radulov both missed almost the entire season, completely robbing them of a significant portion of their offense. They lost 14 games in overtime or shootout (most in the NHL) and missed the playoffs by four points.

The defense is there, they have the goaltending, and they are getting back a healthy Seguin and Radulov. The playoffs should be the expectation at a minimum. 

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25. Hurricanes goalie swap. The biggest question with the Hurricanes always seems to be their goaltending situation. Last year they had one of the top team save percentages in the league and a Calder Trophy finalist in Alex Nedeljkovic. They responded this offseason by completely swapping their goalies, trading Nedeljkovic, letting Petr Mrazek walk, and bringing in Frederik Andersen and Antti Raanta.

It was not that long ago that Andersen and Raanta would have been one of the NHL’s best goalie duos. But are they still capable of that level of play? The Hurricanes are a Cup contender, and the play of Andersen and Raanta will play a big role in what they are capable of. 

24. Tristan Jarry and Casey DeSmith in Pittsburgh. With Sidney Crosby, Evgeni Malkin, and Kris Letang another year older the Penguins window for contention is inching shut. They are not in a position to waste any of their remaining seasons. The 2020-21 season has the feeling of a missed opportunity given the way they lost in the playoffs with Jarry completely melting down in the playoffs. Instead of making changes to the position, or bringing in somebody to push Jarry, they are sticking with the same goalie duo that was not good enough a year ago. The good news is Jarry can not possibly play as poorly as he did in the playoffs over a full season. He will be better. He is capable of being better. But how much better will he be, and will it be good enough?

23. Robin Lehner takes over as No. 1 in Vegas. It seems this is the result the Golden Knights have wanted since acquiring him at the 2020 trade deadline. They made him the starting goalie that postseason, re-signed him to a massive contract that offseason, and seemed prepared to move on from Marc-Andre Fleury right then and there. Even though Fleury came back and reclaimed his starting job and won his first ever Vezina the Golden Knights still dumped him in a salary cap clearing trade, leaving Lehner is the unquestioned starter in Vegas. The Fleury-Lehner duo was the league’s best, and now it all falls on Lehner as he takes over for the most popular player on the team. On a Cup contender that is a lot of pressure and attention.

22. What is the future of the Wild? The Wild emerged as one of the league’s most exciting teams during the 2020-21 season, due in large part to the arrival of Calder Trophy winner Kirill Kaprizov. But contract talks with him have been slow, while the Wild are set to begin a three-year stretch where buyouts leave them with a significantly reduced salary cap number compared to the rest of the league. Can they get Kaprizov signed? Can they build a competitive around him? Are they positioned to be contenders for the long-term, and how does the front office juggle the salary cap situation?

21. Fans back in most buildings. While some buildings had fans for a portion of the 2020-21 season, and some even at full capacity, that should be more of the norm across the league this season. It will be a drastic change after having no fans in the bubble and no fans (especially in Canada) around the league for most of the 2020-21 season.

Anxiety, insomnia prompted Drouin’s leave of absence from Canadiens

Anxiety, insomnia prompted Drouin's leave of absence from Canadiens
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In an interview with TSN/RDS, Jonathan Drouin said that he took a leave of absence from the Canadiens due to anxiety and insomnia problems.

Drouin explained that he’s been dealing with anxiety issues for years, and believes that anxiety also led to issues with insomnia. As hard as it was to not be able to play with the Canadiens — including during a surprise run to the 2021 Stanley Cup Final — it sounds like Drouin is confident that he made the right choice. He also indicated that he’s happy to be back skating with teammates again.

While those issues nagged Drouin for years, he really hit a wall during a series of games against the Flames in late April. At the time, the Canadiens only specified that he was missing time due to a “non-COVID illness.”

Drouin discusses Canadiens absence, issues with anxiety and insomnia

In the U.S. alone, about 18-percent of people deal with anxiety disorders. Unfortunately, it’s highly common for people, such as Drouin, to deal with both anxiety and sleep issues.

Credit Drouin with prioritizing his health. It would be an inspiring, Masterton-worthy story if Drouin came back better than ever in 2021-22. He certainly has the physical gifts to be a difference-maker.

Yet, a healthy and happy Drouin would be more than inpsiring enough, even if the results don’t show on the ice.

James O’Brien is a writer for Pro Hockey Talk on NBC Sports. Drop him a line at phtblog@nbcsports.com or follow him on Twitter @cyclelikesedins.

NHL Free Agency 2021: Every signing by all 32 teams

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It’s time for NHL Free Agency! The offseason is under way and with the market opening July 28 there will be plenty of action this summer. Some teams have already been busy getting their 2021-22 rosters in order. Check back here for all of the signings that teams will be making in hopes of improving their chances at winning the 2022 Stanley Cup.

NHL Free Agency Signings

September 20

• Bruins sign Zach Senyshyn to a one-year, $750,000 deal.

September 19

• Golden Knights sign Nolan Patrick to a two-year, $2.4 million deal.

September 18

• Islanders sign Zdeno Chara to a one-year deal. (Link)
• Oilers sign Kailer Yamamoto to a one-year, $1.175 million deal.
• Senators sign Logan Brown to a one-year, $750,000 deal.

September 16

• Blackhawks sign Nolan Allen to a three-year, $2.775 million deal.
• Golden Knights sign Dylan Coghlan to a two-year, $1.525 million deal.
• Islanders sign Andy Andreyoff to a one-year, $750,000 deal.
• Islanders sign Dmytro Timashov to a one-year, $750,000 deal.
• Islanders sign Paul LaDue to a one-year, $750,000 deal.
• Islanders sign Otto Koivula to a one-year, $750,000 deal.
• Islanders sign Cole Bardreau to a two-year, $1.5 million deal.

September 14

• Blues sign Tyler Bozak to a one-year, $750,000 deal.
• Red Wings sign Givani Smith to a two-year, $1.5 million deal.

September 13

• Sharks sign Noah Gregor to a one-year, $750,000 deal.

September 12

• Kraken signs Ryan Donato to a one-year, $750,000 deal.

September 11

• Oilers sign Cooper Marody to a one-year, $750,000 deal.

September 10

• Flames sign Erik Gudbranson to a one-year, $1.95 million deal.
• Flames sign Michael Stone to a one-year, $750,000 deal.

September 8

• Flames sign Connor Mackey to a two-year, $1.825 million deal.
• Flames sign Brad Richardson to a one-year, $800,000 deal.

September 7

• Kraken signs Dennis Cholowski to a one-year, $900,000 deal.

September 6

• Oilers sign Tyler Tullio to a three-year, $2.775 million deal.

September 4

• Hurricanes sign Jesperi Kotkaniemi to a one-year, $6.1 million deal after Montreal declines to match offer sheet. (Link)
• Rangers sign Libor Hajek to a one-year, $874,125 deal.

September 3

• Senators sign Drake Batherson to a six-year, $29.85 million deal (Link).
• Red Wings sign Filip Hronek to a three-year. $13.2 million deal.

September 2

• Flyers sign Joel Farabee to a six-year, $30 million deal. (Link)
• Sabres sign Casey Mittelstadt to a three-year, $7.5 million deal. (Link)
• Penguins sign Louis Domingue to one-year, $750,000 deal.
• Red Wings sign Carter Rowney to a one-year, $825,000 deal.
• Sabres sign Henri Joikharju to a three-year, $7.5 million deal.

September 1

• Blues sign Colton Parayko to a eight-year, $52 million deal. (Link)
• Islanders sign Anthony Beauvillier to a three-year, $12.45 million deal. (Link)
• Islanders sign Casey Cizikas to a six-year, $15 million deal. (Link)
• Islanders sign Kyle Palmieri to a four-year, $20 million deal. (Link)
• Islanders sign Ilya Sorokin to a three-year, $12 million deal. (Link)
• Kraken signs Riley Sheahan to a one-year, $850,000 deal.

August 31

• Blackhawks sign Connor Murphy to a four-year, $17.6 million deal. (Link)
• Blues sign Tanner Dickinson to a three-year, $2.7 million deal.

August 30

• Predators sign Eeli Tolvanen to a three-year, $4.35 million deal. (Link)
• Coyotes sign Dylan Guenther to a three-year, $5.325 million deal.

August 29

• Senators sign Filip Gustavsson to a two-year, $1.575 million deal.

August 28

• Hurricanes sign Jesperi Kotkaniemi to a one-year, $6.1 million offer sheet. (Link)

August 27

• Canadiens sign Ryan Poehling to a two-year, $1.5 million deal.
• Wild sign Jordie Benn to a one-year, $900,000 deal.

August 26

• Flyers sign Sean Couturier to an eight-year, $62 million deal. (link)
• Hurricanes sign Andrei Svechnikov to an eight-year, $62 million deal. (link)
• Flames sign Dillon Dube to a three-year, $6.9 million deal.

August 25

• Flames sign Justin Kirkland to a one-year, $750,000 deal.
• Flames sign Glenn Gawdin to a one-year, $750,000 deal.
• Flyers sign Derick Brassard to a one-year, $825,000 deal.
• Wild signs Carson Lambos to a three-year, $2.775 million deal.
• Kraken sign Gustav Olofsson to a one-year, $750,000 deal.

August 24

• Blues sign Zachary Bolduc to a three-year, $4.05 million deal.
• Sharks sign Jasper Weatherby to a two-year, $1.85 million deal.

August 21

• Flyers sign Travis Sanheim to a two-year, $9.35 million deal.

NHL Free Agency Offer Sheet Compensation Scale

August 20

• Flames sign Nikita Zadorov to a one-year, $3.75 million deal.
• Flames sign Juuso Välimäki to a two-year, $3.1 million deal.
• Flyers sign Connor Bunnaman to a two-year, $1.5 million deal.
• Kraken sign Antoine Bibeau to a one-year, $750,000 deal.

August 19

• Devils sign Chase Stillman to a three-year, $2.775 million deal.

August 18

• Blackhawks sign MacKenzie Entwistle to a two-year, $1.6 million deal.
• Blue Jackets sign Cole Sillinger to a three-year, $4.9 million deal.

August 17

• Senators sign Scott Sabourin to a one-year, $700,000 deal.
• Wild signs Mason Shaw to a two-year, $1.5 million deal.

August 16

• Predators sign Juuse Saros to a four-year, $20 million deal. (Link)
• Wild signs Kevin Fiala to a one-year, $5.1 million deal. (Link)
• Avalanche signs Dennis Gilbert to a one-year, $750,000 deal.
• Blackhawks sign Alex Nylander to a one-year, $874,125 deal.
• Blue Jackets sign Ole Julian Bjørgvik Holm to a three-year, $2.753 million deal.

August 15

• Hurricanes sign Aleksi Heimosalmi to a three-year, $2.775 million deal.
• Hurricanes sign Ville Koivunen to a three-year, $2.775 million deal.
• Jets sign Dmitri Kuzmin to a three-year, $2.775 million deal.
• Red Wings sign Adam Erne to a two-year, $4.2 million deal.

August 14

• Canucks sign Jason Dickinson to a three-year, $7.95 million deal.
• Coyotes sign Janis Moser to a three-year, $2.775 million deal.
• Flyers sign Samu Tuomaala to a three-year, $2.775 million deal.
• Islanders sign Aatu Räty to a three-year, $2.775 million deal.
• Red Wings sign Sebastian Cossa to a three-year, $2.775 million deal.
• Sharks sign William Eklund to a three-year, $5.325 million deal.

August 13

• Panthers sign Joe Thornton to a one-year, $750,000 deal. (Link)
• Blue Jackets sign Zac Rinaldo to a one-year, $750,000 deal.
• Blue Jackets sign Stanislav Svozil to a three-year, $2.775 million deal.
• Ducks sign Sasha Pastujov to a three-year, $2.775 million deal.
• Ducks sign Mason MacTavish to a three-year, $10.275 million deal.
• Ducks sign Olen Zellweger to a three-year, $2.775 million deal.
• Kings sign Jacob Moverare to a one-year, $750,000 deal.
• Kraken signs Carsen Twarynski to a one-year, $750,000 deal.
• Kraken signs Cale Fleury to a one-year, $750,000 deal.
• Sabres sign Casey Fitzgerald to a two-year, $1.5 million deal.

August 12

• Jets sign Andrew Copp to a one-year, $3.64 million deal. (Link)
• Canucks sign Guillaume Brisebois to a one-year, $750,000 deal.
• Flames sign Tyler Parsons to a one-year, $771,750 deal.
• Hurricanes sign Maxime Lajoie to a one-year, $750,000 deal.
• Jets sign Johnny Kovacevic to a one-year, $750,000 deal.
• Kings sign Samuel Helenius to a three-year, $2.775 million deal.
• Oilers sign Slater Koekkoek to a two-year, $1.85 million deal.
• Rangers sign Brennan Othmann to a three-year, $4.125 million deal.

August 11

• Jets sign Neal Pionk to a four-year, $23.5 million deal. (Link)
• Panthers sign Sam Reinhart to a three-year, $19.5 million deal. (Link)
• Hurricanes sign Andrew Poturalski to a one-year, $750,000 deal.
• Oilers sign Tyler Benson to a one-year, $750,000 deal.

August 10

• Blackhawks sign Mike Hardman to a two-year, $1.6 million deal.
• Kings sign Brandt Clarke to a three-year, $2.775 million deal.
• Red Wings sign Jakub Vrana to a three-year, $15.75 million deal.

August 9

• Capitals sign Ilya Samsonov to a one-year, $2 million deal. (Link)
• Flyers sign Carter Hart to a three-year, $11.94 million deal. (Link)
• Rangers sign Igor Shesterkin to a four-year, $22.67 million deal. (Link)
• Blue Jackets sign Andrew Peeke to a two-year, $1.575 million deal.
• Bruins sign Fabian Lysell to a three-year, $2.775 million deal.
• Canucks sign Olli Juolevi to a one-year, $750,000 deal.
• Devils sign Janne Kuokkanen to a two-year, $3.65 million deal.
• Ducks sign Max Jones to a three-year, $3.885 million deal.
• Ducks sign Maxime Comtois to a two-year, $4.075 million deal.
• Ducks sign Josh Mahura to a one-year, $750,000 deal.
• Flames sign Oliver Kylington to a one-year, $750,000 deal.
• Lightning signs Ross Colton to a two-year, $2.25 million deal.

August 8

• Oilers sign Stuart Skinner to a two-year, $1.5 million deal.

August 7

• Oilers sign Brendan Perlini to a one-year, $750,000 deal.
• Wild signs Will Bitten to a one-year, $840,000 deal.

August 6

• Islanders sign Adam Pelech to an eight-year, $46 million deal. (Link)
• Oilers sign Darnell Nurse to an eight-year, $74 million deal. (Link)
• Avalanche signs Oskar Olausson to a three-year, $2.775 million deal.
• Blackhawks sign Brandon Hagel to a three-year, $4.5 million deal.
• Canadiens sign Michael McNiven to a one-year, $750,000 deal.
• Coyotes sign Connor Timmins to a two-year, $1.7 million deal.
• Coyotes sign Bokondji Imama to a one-year, $750,000 deal.
• Ducks sign Isac Lundeström to a one-year, $874,125 deal.
• Ducks sign Sam Steel to a one-year, $874,125 deal.
• Flames sign Luke Philp to a one-year, $750,000 deal.
• Flames sign Matthew Phillips to a one-year, $750,000 deal.
• Kings sign Cale Clague to a one-year, $761,250 deal.
• Kraken signs Marcus Johansen to a one-year, $1.5 million deal.
• Kraken signs Vince Dunn to a one-year, $8 million deal.
• Kraken signs Kole Lind to a one-year, $874,125 deal.
• Rangers sign Ty Ronning to a one-year, $750,000 deal.

August 5

• Devils sign Tomas Tatar to a two-year, $9 million deal. (Link)
• Canadiens sign Michael Pezzetta to a one-year, $750,000 deal.
• Capitals sign Michael Vecchione to a one-year, $750,000 deal.
• Devils sign Yegor Sharangovich to a two-year, $4 million deal.
• Kings sign Austin Strand to a one-year, $771,750 deal.
• Kraken signs Will Borgen to a two-year, $1.8 million deal.
• Panthers sign Chase Priskie to a one-year, $750,000 deal.
• Penguins sign Zach Aston-Reese to a one-year, $1.725 million deal.
• Predators sign Dante Fabbro to a two-year, $4.8 million deal.
• Rangers sign Tim Gettinger to a one-year, $750,000 deal.
• Red Wings sign Chase Pearson to a one-year, $874,125 deal.

August 4

• Blues sign Zach Sanford to a one-year, $2 million deal.
• Devils sign Marian Studenic to a one-year, $750,000 deal.
• Devils sign A.J. Greer to a one-year, $750,000 deal.
• Hurricanes sign Josh Jacobs to a one-year, $750,000 deal.
• Jets sign Logan Stanley to a two-year, $1.8 million deal.
• Kraken signs Alexander True to a one-year, $750,000 deal.
• Kraken signs Connor Carrick to a one-year, $800,000 deal.
• Maple Leafs sign Joseph Duszak to a one-year, $750,000 deal.
• Predators sign Rem Pitlick to a one-year, $917,831 deal.
• Senators sign Victor Mete to a one-year, $1.2 million deal.
• Sharks sign Adin Hill to a two-year, $4.35 million deal.

August 3

• Blues sign Jordan Kyrou to a two-year, $5.6 million deal.
• Coyotes sign Travis Boyd to a one-year, $750,000 deal.
• Penguins sign Radim Zohorna to a two-year, $1.5 million deal.
• Rangers sign Adam Huska to a one-year, $750,000 deal.
• Stars sign Joseph Cecconi to a one-year, $750,000 deal.

August 2

• Avalanche signs Ryan Murray to a one-year, $2 million deal.
• Coyotes sign Cam Dineen to a one-year, $750,000 deal.
• Coyotes sign Blake Speers to a one-year, $750,000 deal.
• Coyotes sign Dysin Mayo to a one-year, $750,000 deal.
• Stars sign Jerad Rosburg to a two-year, $1.5 million deal.

August 1

• Hurricanes sign Stefan Noesen to a one-year, $750,000 deal.
• Kings sign Brayden Burke to a one-year, $750,000 deal.
• Lightning signs Sean Day to a one-year, $750,000 deal.
• Panthers sign Samuel Montembeault to a one-year, $750,000 deal.

July 31

• Maple Leafs sign Nick Ritchie to two-year, $5 million deal. (Link)
• Maple Leafs sign Ondrej Kase to one-year, $1.25 million deal. (Link)
• Red Wings sign Tyler Bertuzzi to two-year, $9.5 million deal. (Link)
• Avalanche signs Jordan Gross to a one-year, $750K deal.
• Blues sign Dakota Joshua to a one-year, $750K deal.
• Blue Jackets sign Brendan Gaunce to a one-year, $750K deal.
• Canadiens sign Arturri Lehkonen to a one-year, $2.3 million deal.
• Jets sign Riley Nash to a one-year, $750K deal.
• Jets sign Austin Poganski to a one-year, $750K deal.
• Lightning signs Boris Katchouk to a three-year, $2.275 million deal.
• Maple Leafs sign Brennan Menell to a one-year, $750K deal.
• Oilers sign Warren Foegele to a three-year, $8.25 million deal.
• Rangers sign Ryan Reaves to one-year, $1.75 million deal.
• Hurricanes sign Derek Stepan to a one-year, $1.35 million deal.
• Stars sign Joel Kiviranta to a two-year, $2.1 million deal.
• Jets sign Benjamin Gleason to a one-year, $750K deal.

July 30

• Avalanche signs Tyson Jost to a two-year, $4 million deal.
• Blues sign Calle Rosen to a one-year, $750,000 deal.
• Blues sign Tommy Cross to a one-year, $750,000 deal.
• Blues sign Ivan Barbashev to a two-year, $4.5 million deal.
• Blue Jackets sign Mikko Lehtonen to a one-year, $900,000 deal.
• Flames sign Colton Poolman to a one-year, $750,000 deal.
• Hurricanes sign Maxim Letunov to a one-year, $750,000 deal.
• Hurricanes sign Alex Lyon to a one-year, $750,000 deal.
• Hurricanes sign Sam Miletic to a one-year, $750,000 deal.
• Kings sign Lias Andersson to a one-year, $874,125 deal
• Lightning signs Alex Barré-Boulet to a three-year, $2.275 million deal.
• Lightning signs Taylor Raddysh to a three-year, $2.275 million deal.
• Maple Leafs sign Ondrej Kase to a one-year, $1.25 million deal.
• Panthers sign Zac Dalpe to a two-year, $1.5 million deal.
• Predators sign Tanner Jeannot to a two-year, $1.6 million deal.
• Red Wings sign Brian Lashoff to a one-year, $750,000 deal.
• Sabres sign Rasmus Asplund to a two-year, $1.65 million deal.
• Sabres sign Ryan MacInnis to a one-year, $750,000 deal.
• Stars sign Nicholas Caamano to a one-year, $750,000 deal.
• Stars sign Colton Point to a one-year, $750,000 deal.

July 29

• Blues sign Brandon Saad to a five-year, $22.5 million deal. (Link)
Blue Jackets sign Zach Werenski to a six-year, $57.5 million deal. (Link)
• Lightning signs Corey Perry to a two-year, $2 million deal. (Link)
• Avalanche signs Darren Helm to a one-year, $1 million deal.
• Avalanche signs Dylan Sikura to a one-year, $800,000 deal.
• Avalanche signs Stefan Matteau to a one-year, $750,000 deal.
• Blues sign Matthew Peca to a one-year, $750,000 deal.
• Blues sign Charlie Lindgren to a one-year, $750,000 deal.
• Blues sign Nathan Todd to a one-year, $750,000 deal.
• Blue Jackets sign Jake Bean to a three-year, $7 million deal.
• Canadiens sign Mathieu Perreault to a one-year, $950,000 deal.
• Coyotes sign Hudson Fasching to a one-year, $750,000 deal.
• Coyotes sign Michael Carcone to a two-year, $1.5 million deal.
• Devils sign Robbie Russo to a two-year, $1.5 million deal.
• Devils sign Joseph Gambardella to a two-year, $1.5 million deal.
• Ducks sign Danny O’Regan to a two-year, $1.5 million deal.
• Ducks sign Buddy Robinson to a one-year, $750,000 deal.
• Ducks sign Greg Pateryn to a one-year, $750,000 deal.
• Flames sign Andy Welinski to a one-year, $750,000 deal.
• Hurricanes sign Brendan Smith to a one-year, $800,000 deal.
• Hurricanes sign Jalen Chatfield to a one-year, $750,000 deal.
• Lightning signs Cal Foote to a two-year, $1.7 million deal.
• Maple Leafs sign Brett Seney to a one-year, $750,000 deal.
• Maple Leafs sign Pavel Gogolev to a three-year, $2.775 million deal.
• Penguins sign Michael Chaput to a one-year, $750,000 deal.
• Penguins sign Danton Heinen to a one-year, $1.1 million deal.
• Predators sign Mathieu Oliver to a two-year, $1.5 million deal.
• Rangers sign Filip Chytil to a two-year, $4.6 million deal.
• Red Wings sign Daniel Renouf to a one-year, $750,000 deal.
• Red Wings sign Ryan Murphy to a one-year, $800,000 deal.
• Red Wings sign Luke Witkowski to a two-year, $1.5 million deal.
• Sabres sign Ethan Prow to a one-year, $750,000 deal.
• Sabres sign John Hayden to a one-year, $750,000 deal.
• Senators sign Pontus Aberg to a one-year, $750,000 deal.
• Senators sign Dillon Heatherington to a one-year, $750,000 deal.
• Senators sign Kole Sherwood to a one-year, $750,000 deal.
• Stars sign Michael Raffl to a one-year, $1.1 million deal.
• Stars sign Jani Hakanpää to a three-year, $4.5 million deal.
• Wild signs Kevin Czuczman to a one-year, $750,000 deal.
• Wild signs Jon Merrill to a one-year, $850,000 deal.
• Wild signs Brandon Duhaime to a two-year, $1.5 million deal.

July 28

• Bruins sign Linus Ullmark to a four-year, $20 million deal. (Link)
• Canucks sign Jaroslav Halak to a one-year, $1.5 million deal. (Link)
• Devils sign Dougie Hamilton to a seven-year, $63 million deal. (Link)
• Golden Knights sign Alec Martinez to three-year, $15.74 million deal. (Link)
• Hurricanes sign Frederik Andersen to a two-year, $9 million deal. (Link)
• Hurricanes sign Tony DeAngelo to a one-year, $1 million deal.(Link)
• Kings sign Phillip Danault to a six-year, $33.5 million deal. (Link)
• Kings sign Alex Edler to a one-year, $3.5 million deal. (Link)
• Kraken signs Alexander Wennberg to a three-year, $13.5 million deal. (Link)
• Kraken signs Philipp Grubauer to a six-year, $35.4 million deal. (Link)
• Kraken signs Jaden Schwartz to a five-year, $27.5 million deal. (Link)
• Lightning signs Brayden Point to an eight-year, $76 million deal. (Link)
• Maple Leafs sign Petr Mrazek to a three-year, $11.4 million deal. (Link)
• Oilers sign Zach Hyman to a seven-year, $38.5 million deal. (Link)
• Oilers sign Tyson Barrie to a three-year, $13.5 million deal. (Link)
• Oilers sign Cody Ceci to a four-year, $13 million deal. (Link)
• Stars sign Ryan Suter to a four-year, $14.6 million deal. (Link)
• Wild signs Alex Goligoski to a one-year, $5 million deal. (Link)
• Avalanche signs Roland McKeown to a one-year, $750,000 deal.
• Blackhawks sign Jujhar Khaira to a two-year, $1.95 million deal.
• Blackhawks sign Jake McCabe to a four-year, $16 million deal.
• Blue Jackets sign Eric Robinson to a two-year, $3.2 million deal.
• Blue Jackets sign Boone Jenner to a four-year, $15 million deal.
• Blue Jackets sign Sean Kuraly to a four-year, $10 million deal.
• Blue Jackets sign Alexandre Texier to a two-year, $3.05 million deal.
• Blue Jackets sign Tyler Sikura to a one-year, $750,000 deal.
• Blue Jackets sign Gavin Bayreuther to a two-year, $1.5 million deal.
• Bruins sign Nick Foligno to a two-year, $3.8 million deal.
• Bruins sign Derek Forbort to a three-year, $9 million deal.
• Bruins sign Erik Haula to a two-year, $4.75 million deal.
• Bruins sign Tomas Nosek to a two-year, $3.5 million deal.
• Bruins sign Troy Grosenick to a one year, $750,000 deal.
• Bruins sign Samuel Asselin to a two-year, $1.5 million deal.
• Bruins sign Steven Fogarty to a one-year, $750,000 deal.
• Bruins sign Tyler Lewington to a one-year, $750,000 deal.
• Canadiens sign David Savard to a four-year, $14 million deal.
• Canadiens sign Mike Hoffman to three-year, $13.5 million deal.
• Canadiens sign Louie Belpedio to a one-year, $750,000 deal.
• Canadiens sign Chris Wideman to a one-year, $750,000 deal.
• Canadiens sign Cedric Paquette to a one-year, $950,000 deal.
• Canadiens sign Jean-Sébastien Dea to a one-year, $750,000 deal.
• Canucks sign Brandon Sutter to a one-year, $1.125 million deal.
• Canucks sign Luke Schenn to a two-year, $1.7 million deal.
• Canucks sign Kyle Burroughs to a two-year, $1.5 million deal.
• Canucks sign Nic Petan to a one-year, $750,000 deal.
• Canucks sign Brad Hunt to a one-year, $800,000 deal.
• Canucks sign Devante Stephens to a one-year, $750,000 deal.
• Canucks sign Sheldon Dries to a one-year, $750,000 deal.
• Canucks sign John Stevens to a one-year, $750,000 deal.
• Canucks sign Sheldon Rempal to a one-year, $750,000 deal.
• Canucks sign Justin Bailey to a one-year, $750,000 deal.
• Canucks sign Justin Dowling to a two-year, $1.5 million deal.
• Canucks sign Travis Hamonic to a two-year, $6 million deal.
• Canucks sign Phil Di Giuseppe to a one-year, $750,000 deal.
• Canucks sign Tucker Poolman to a four-year, $10 million deal.
• Canucks sign Danila Klimovich to a three-year, $2.775 million deal.
• Canucks sign Brady Keeper to a two-year, $1.525 million deal.
• Capitals sign Hunter Shepard to a two-year, $1.5 million deal.
• Capitals sign Dylan McIlrath to a two-year, $1.5 million deal.
• Capitals sign Lucas Johansen to a one-year, $750,000 deal.
• Capitals sign Matt Irwin to a one-year, $750,000 deal.
• Coyotes sign Liam O'Brien to a one-year, $750,000 deal.
• Coyotes sign Ryan Dzingel to a one-year, $1.1 million deal.
• Coyotes sign Carter Hutton to a one-year, $750,000 deal.
• Coyotes sign Dmitrij Jaškin to a one-year, $3.2 million deal.
• Ducks sign Ryan Getzlaf to a one-year, $4.5 million deal.
• Ducks sign Brogan Rafferty to a one-year, $750K deal.
• Devils sign Jonathan Bernier to a two-year, $8.25 million deal.
• Devils sign Chase DeLeo to a one-year, $750,000 deal.
• Devils sign Brian Flynn to a one-year, $750,000 deal.
• Flames sign Blake Coleman to a six-year, $29.4 million deal.
• Flames sign Trevor Lewis to a one-year, $800,000 deal.
• Flames sign Kevin Gravel to a one-year, $750,000 deal.
• Flames sign Nick DeSimone to a one-year, $750,000 deal.
• Flames sign Adam Werner to a one-year, $750,000 deal.
• Flyers sign Nate Thompson to a one-year, $800,000 deal.
• Flyers sign Adam Clendening to a one-year, $750,000 deal.
• Flyers sign Nick Seeler to a one-year, $750,000 deal.
• Flyers sign Cooper Zech to a two-year, $1.75 million deal.
• Flyers sign Ryan Fitzgerald to a one-year, $750,000 deal.
• Flyers sign Gerald Mayhew to a one-year, $800,000 deal.
• Golden Knights sign Laurent Brossoit to a two-year, $4.65 million deal.
• Golden Knights sign Mattias Janmark to a one-year, $2 million deal.
• Golden Knights sign Sven Baertschi to a one-year, $750,000 deal.
• Golden Knights sign Patrick Brown to a two-year, $1.5 million deal.
• Golden Knights sign Gage Quinney to a one-year, $750,000 deal.
• Hurricanes sign Antti Raanta to a two-year, $4 million deal.
• Hurricanes sign Josh Leivo to a one-year, $750,000 deal.
• Hurricanes sign C.J. Smith to a one-year, $750,000 deal.
• Hurricanes sign Ian Cole to a one-year, $2.9 million deal.
• Hurricanes sign Jordan Martinook to a three-year, $5.4 million deal.
• Jets sign Luke Johnson to a one-year, $750,000 deal.
• Jets sign Michael Eyssimont to a two-year, $1.5 million deal.
• Kings sign Andreas Athanasiou to a one-year, $2.7 million deal.
• Kings sign T.J. Tynan to a one-year, $750,000 deal.
• Kings sign Alex Edler to a one-year, $3.5 million deal.
• Kings sign Garret Sparks to a one-year, $750,000 deal.
• Lightning signs Remi Elie to a one-year, $750,000 deal.
• Lightning signs Charles Hudon to a one-year, $750,000 deal.
• Lightning signs Brian Elliott to a one-year, $900,000 deal.
• Lightning signs Zach Bogosian to a three-year, $2.55 deal.
• Lightning signs Pierre-Edouard Bellemare to a two-year, $2 million deal.
• Lightning signs Andrej Sustr to a one-year, $750,000 deal.
• Lightning signs Darren Raddysh to a one-year, $750,000 deal.
• Lightning signs Maxim Legace to a one-year, $750,000 deal.
• Maple Leafs sign Michael Bunting to a two-year, $1.9 million deal.
• Maple Leafs sign David Kampf to a two-year, $3 million deal.
• Maple Leafs sign Michael Amadio to a one-year, $750,000 deal.
• Maple Leafs sign Carl Dahlstrom to a one-year, $750,000 deal.
• Maple Leafs sign Alex Biega to a one-year, $750,000 deal.
• Maple Leafs sign Kurtis Gabriel to a one-year, $750,000 deal.
• Oilers sign Derek Ryan to a two-year, $2.5 million deal.
• Panthers sign Maxim Mamim to a one-year, $975,000 deal.
• Panthers sign Juho Lammikko to a one-year, $750,000 deal.
• Panthers sign Carter Verhaeghe to a three-year, $12.5 million deal.
• Panthers sign Christopher Gibson to a one-year, $750,000 deal.
• Penguins sign Evan Rodrigues to a one-year, $1 million deal.
• Penguins sign Brock McGinn to a four-year, $11 million deal.
• Penguins sign Dominik Simon to a one-year, $750,000 deal.
• Penguins sign Taylor Fedun to a one-year, $750,000 deal.
• Penguins sign Filip Lindberg to a two-year, $1.85 deal.
• Predators sign Mikael Granlund to a four-year, $20 million deal.
• Predators sign David Rittich to a one-year, $1.25 million deal.
• Predators sign Anthony Richard to a one-year, $750,000 deal.
• Predators sign Matt Luff to a one-year, $750,000 deal.
• Predators sign Zachary L’Heureux to a three-year, $2.775 million deal.
• Predators sign Michael McCarron to a two-year, $1.5 million deal.
• Predators sign Matt Tennyson to a two-year, $1.5 million deal.
• Rangers sign Patrik Nemeth to a three-year, $7.5 million deal.
• Rangers sign Jarred Tinordi to a two-year, $1.8 million deal.
• Rangers sign Greg McKegg to a one-year, $750,000 deal.
• Rangers sign Dryden Hunt to a two-year, $1.525 million deal.
• Red Wings sign Sam Gagner to a one-year, $850,000 deal.
• Red Wings sign Calvin Rickard to a one-year, $800,000 deal.
• Red Wings sign Jordan Oesterle to a two-year, $2.7 million deal.
• Red Wings sign Pius Suter to a two-year, $6.25 million deal.
• Sabres sign Vinnie Hinostroza to a one-year, $1.05 million deal.
• Sabres sign Aaron Dell to a one-year, $750,000 deal.
• Sabres sign Brandon Davidson to a one-year, $750,000 deal.
• Sabres sign Sean Malone to a one-year, $750,000 deal.
• Sabres sign Craig Anderson to a one-year, $750,000 deal.
• Sabres sign Mark Pysyk to a one-year, $900,000 deal.
• Sabres sign Jimmy Schuldt to a one-year, $750,000 deal.
• Senators sign Michael Del Zotto to a two-year, $4 million deal.
• Senators sign Andrew Agozzino to a one-year, $750,000 deal.
• Sharks sign Andrew Cogliano to a one-year, $1 million deal.
• Sharks sign James Reimer to a two-year, $4.5 million deal.
• Sharks sign Lane Pederson to a two-year, $1.5 million deal.
• Sharks sign Nick Bonino to a two-year, $4.1 million deal.
• Sharks sign Nick Merkley to a one-year, $750,000 deal.
• Sharks sign Jaycob Megna to a one-year, $750,000 deal.
• Stars sign Braden Holtby to a one-year, $2 million deal.
• Stars sign Luke Glendening to a two-year, $3 million deal.
• Stars sign Alex Petrovic to a one-year, $750,000 deal.
• Stars sign Andreas Borgman to a one-year, $750,000 deal.
• Wild signs Frederick Gaudreau to a two-year, $2.4 million deal.
• Wild signs Dmitry Kulikov to a two-year, $4.5 million deal.
• Wild signs Joe Hicketts to a two-year, $1.5 million deal.
• Wild signs Jon Lizotte  to a one-year, $750,000 deal.
• Wild signs Dominic Turgeon to a one-year, $750,000 deal.

July 27

• Avalanche signs Gabriel Landeskog to eight-year, $56 million deal. (Link)
• Blues sign Pavel Buchnevich to four-year, $23.2 million deal. (Link)
• Blue Jackets sign Patrik Laine to one-year, $7.5 million deal. (Link)
• Bruins sign Mike Reilly to three-year, $9M deal. (Link)
• Canadiens sign Joel Armia to a four-year, $13.6 million deal. (Link)
• Canucks sign Conor Garland to five-year, $24.75 million deal. (Link)
• Capitals sign Alex Ovechkin to five-year, $47.5 million deal. (Link)
• Flyers sign Keith Yandle to one-year, $900,000 deal.
• Jets sign Eric Comrie to a one-year, $750,000 deal.
• Lightning signs Otto Somppi to a one-year, $750,000 deal.
• Panthers sign Brandon Montour to three-year, $10.5 million deal.
• Red Wings sign Taro Hirose to one-year, $850,000 deal.
• Red Wings sign Kyle Criscuolo to two-year, $1.5 million deal.
• Sabres sign Drake Caggiula to one-year, $750,000 deal.
• Wild signs Kyle Rau to a one-year, $750,000 deal.
• Wild signs Dakota Mermis to a two-year, $1.5 million deal.

July 26

• Panthers sign Sam Bennett to a four-year, $17.6 million deal. (Link)
• Blackhawks sign Adam Gaudette to a one-year, $997,500 deal.
• Bruins sign Nick Wolff to a one-year, $750,000 deal.
• Devils sign Christian Jaros to a one-year $800,000 deal.
• Flyers sign Samuel Morin to a one-year, $750,000 deal.
• Jets sign Paul Stastny to a one-year, $3.75 million deal.
• Panthers sign Lucas Carlsson to a one-year, $750,000 deal.
• Panthers sign Noah Juulsen to a one-year, $750,000 deal.
• Predators sign Frédéric Allard to a one-year, $750,000 deal.
• Predators sign Ben Harpur to a one-year $800,000 deal.
• Predators sign Jeremy Davies to a one-year, $750,000 deal.
• Red Wings sign Gustav Lindström to a two-year, $1.7 million deal.
• Wild signs Andrew Hammond to a one-year, $750,000 deal.

July 25

• Red Wings sign Marc Staal to a one-year, $2 million deal.

July 24

• Avalanche signs Cale Makar to a six-year, $54 million deal. (Link)
• Blues sign Nathan Walker to a two-year, $1.5 million deal.
• Kings sign Trevor Moore to a two-year, $3.75 million deal.
• Penguins sign Kasper Björkqvist to a one-year, $750,000 deal.

July 23

• Blackhawks sign Seth Jones to an eight-year, $76 million deal. (Link)
• Bruins sign Taylor Hall to a four-year, $24 million deal. (Link)
• Hurricanes sign Spencer Smallman to a one-year, $750,000 deal.

PHT Morning Skate: Panarin on Rangers captaincy; Golden Knights sign Patrick

panarin
Jared Silber/NHLI via Getty Images
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Welcome to the PHT Morning Skate, a collection of links from the NHL and around the hockey world. Have a link you want to submit? Email us at phtblog@nbcsports.

Artemi Panarin on why he wouldn’t feel comfortable being the next Rangers captain: “I think I’m more effective in hockey. And I’m afraid that I won’t be an effective captain. I even don’t speak English. How can I motivate? I can only influence with my own game. And they will listen to me without any letters.” [NHL.com]

Matthew Tkachuk not really helping Senators’ fans’ nerves when it comes to an extension for his brother Brady: “He might be pulling a classic Tkachuk right now. Dad held out, Matthew held out, and Brady looks like he’s on his way right now. So hopefully it can get figured out here. But it’s just a lot of fake stuff out there regarding this. They’re not too close.” [Sportsnet]

• In other unsigned RFA news, Canucks GM Jim Benning is hoping to get both Elias Pettersson and Quinn Hughes signed by the time camp opens this week. [NHL.com]

• The Golden Knights have signed Nolan Patrick to a two-year, $2.4 million contract. [Knights on Ice]

• If you missed it over the weekend, Zdeno Chara is returning to the Islanders on a one-year deal. [PHT]

• Maple Leafs president Brendan Shanahan on the franchise’s focus as they attempt to make a Stanley Cup run: “What we can’t do is get frustrated now. We can’t discard the plan. We can’t go on our own as individuals. We have to continue on this course and I think the players are absolutely driven to get this done here in Toronto.” [Toronto Sun]

• Looking at the good and bad of the Bruce Cassidy breaking up the pairing of Charlie McAvoy and Matt Grzelcyk. [NBC Sports Boston]

• Red Wings Jared McIsaac looks to be OK after he lost consciousness following a hit along the boards during Sunday’s prospects game against the Blue Jackets. [Detroit Free Press]

• Diving into a dark topic: What would life for the Wild be like without Kirill Kaprizov? [Zone Coverage]

• Will we see a better Jacob Markstrom for the Flames this season? [Flames Nation]

• Which NHL players are being undervalued in fantasy hockey drafts? [NBC Sports Edge]

————

Sean Leahy is a writer for Pro Hockey Talk on NBC Sports. Drop him a line at phtblog@nbcsports.com or follow him on Twitter @Sean_Leahy

2021-22 NHL offseason trade tracker

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The offseason has arrived and there are plenty of NHL trades that will go down before the 2021-22 season. Check back here for all of the trades that teams will be making in hopes of improving their chances at winning the 2022 Stanley Cup.

2021 NHL offseason trades

September 4 (Link)

Arizona Coyotes: 2022 first-round pick, 2024 second-round pick (*ARZ will receive the better or worse of MTL’s two first-round picks in the 2022 draft, and a second-round pick in the 2024 NHL Draft. However, if either of the first-round picks is in the top 10 of the draft, then ARZ will receive the lower of the selection)
Montreal Canadiens: Christian Dvorak

July 31

Tampa Bay Lightning: Future considerations
Vancouver Canucks: Spencer Martin

July 30

Tampa Bay Lightning: 2022 sixth-round pick
Detroit Red Wings: Mitchell Stephens

July 29 (Link)

New York Rangers: Ryan Reaves
Vegas Golden Knights: 2022 third-round pick

July 28 (Link)

Arizona Coyotes: Conor Timmins, 2022 first-round pick, 2024 conditional third-round pick (ARZ gets 2024 third-round pick if COL wins 2022 Cup and Kuemper plays in 50% of playoff games)
Colorado Avalanche: Darcy Kuemper

July 28 

Washington Capitals: Vitek Vanecek
Seattle Kraken: 2023 second-round pick

July 28 

Calgary Flames: Daniel Vladar
Boston Bruins: 2022 third-round pick

July 28 

Buffalo Sabres: Will Butcher, 2022 fifth-round pick
New Jersey Devils: Future considerations

July 28 

San Jose Sharks: Lane Pederson
Arizona Coyotes: 2024 fourth-round pick

July 28 

Ottawa Senators: Nick Holden, 2022 third-round pick
Vegas Golden Knights: Evgenii Dadonov

July 28 

Minnesota Wild: Conditional 2022 seventh-round pick (Wild get pick if Menell plays 30 games for TOR in 2021-22)
Toronto Maple Leafs: Brennan Menell

July 28 

Edmonton Oilers: Warren Foegele
Carolina Hurricanes: Ethan Bear

July 28 

Chicago Blackhawks: 2022 third-round pick
Calgary Flames: Nikita Zadorov

July 27 (Link)

Chicago Blackhawks: Tyler Johnson, 2023 second-round pick
Tampa Bay Lightning: Brent Seabrook

July 27 (Link)

Winnipeg Jets: Nate Schmidt
Vancouver Canucks: 2022 second-round pick

July 27

Colorado Avalanche: Kurtis MacDermid
Seattle Kraken: 2023 fourth-round pick

July 27 (Link)

Vegas Golden Knights: Mikael Hakkarainen
Chicago Blackhawks: Marc-Andre Fleury

July 26

Washington Capitals: 2022 second-round pick, 2023 second-round pick
Winnipeg Jets: Brenden Dillon

July 26

Florida Panthers: 2023 seventh-round pick.
Arizona Coyotes: Anton Stralman, Vladislav Kolyachonok, 2024 second-round pick

July 26

Boston Bruins: James Greenway
Toronto Maple Leafs: Future considerations

July 26

New Jersey Devils: Christian Jaros
San Jose Sharks: Nick Merkley

July 24 (Link)

Buffalo Sabres: Devon Levi, 2022 conditional first-round pick (If the pick is in the top 10, the pick will be exchanged with FLA’s 2023 first-round pick)
Florida Panthers: Sam Reinhart

July 24 (Link)

Philadelphia Flyers: Cam Atkinson
Columbus Blue Jackets: Jakub Voracek

July 24

Arizona Coyotes: Bokondji Imama, Cole Hults
Los Angeles Kings: Brayden Burke, Tyler Steenbergen

July 23

Carolina Hurricanes: 2021 second-round pick
Columbus Blue Jackets: Jake Bean

July 23 (Link)

Chicago Blackhawks: Seth Jones, 2021 first-round pick, 2022 sixth-round pick
Columbus Blue Jackets: Adam Boqvist, 2021 first-round pick, 2021 second-round pick, 2022 conditional first-round pick (If CHI wins one of the the 2022 draft lotteries, the pick becomes their 2023 first-round pick)

July 23 (Link)

Arizona Coyotes: Antoine Roussel, Jay Beagle, Loui Eriksson, 2021 first-round pick, 2022 second-round pick, 2023 seventh-round pick
Vancouver Canucks: Oliver Ekman-Larsson, Conor Garland (signing rights)

July 23 (Link)

St. Louis Blues: Pavel Buchnevich
New York Rangers: 2022 second-round pick

July 23 (Link)

Philadelphia Flyers: Rasmus Ristolainen
Buffalo Sabres: Robert Hagg, 2021 first-round pick, 2023 second-round pick

2021 NHL offseason trades

July 22

Calgary Flames: Tyler Pitlick
Seattle Kraken: 2022 fourth-round pick

July 22 (Link)

Detroit Red Wings: Alex Nedeljkovic
Carolina Hurricanes: Jonathan Bernier (signing rights), 2021 third-round pick

July 22 (Link)

Philadelphia Flyers: Future considerations
Arizona Coyotes: Shayne Gostisbehere, 2022 second-round pick, 2022 seventh-round pick