The Tampa Bay Lightning completed their bubble journey and were crowned the 2020 Stanley Cup Champions… but that’s old news now. On Tuesday, the first round of the NHL draft happened followed by rounds 2-7 on Wednesday.
With all of that excitement now in the past (or still in the present for some), it’s time to move on in the NHL offseason. Friday, October 9th marks the first day of the NHL free agency period. An exciting day as fans are anxious to see if their team will make any moves, some will be happy, some on the other hand will experience heartbreak.
This offseason will be no different despite the COVID-19 pandemic. Many top stars are expected to be on the move, and here’s what I expect to happen to the top stars of this year’s NHL free agency class.
The crown jewel of this year’s free agency class is without a doubt St. Louis Blues defender Alex Pietrangelo. It has been reported that Pietrangelo will in fact test the free agent market to see who will offer him the best deal.
As we know, the St. Louis Blues had an impeccable run back in 2019, winning the Stanley Cup in seven games over Boston. However, the Blues won’t have any luck in resigning their captain. Here’s probably a prediction that fans of a team on the East Coast is going to love.
For the 2020-21 season, Alex Pietrangelo will be a member of the Boston Bruins. Yes, the 2019-20 Presidents’ Trophy winner will land the top free agent in this year’s free agent class.
With Torey Krug and Zdeno Chara as unrestricted free agents, Boston has money to spend (about 9 million). With Tampa Bay looking like an actual threat now, Boston is seeing its Stanley Cup window closing. Pietrangelo would be the perfect signing to boost Boston’s chances again of challenging for the Stanley Cup.
If teams miss out on Pietrangelo, the consolation prize is just as nice. This year it’s Taylor Hall. The former number one pick won the Hart Trophy back in the 2017-18 season, but since then, his production on the ice hasn’t been the same. It appears that Hall will not return to Arizona, so where will he go? Colorado.
Yes, the Avalanche will land Hall.
Hall needs to locate to another team to give him the confidence booster he had back in 2017. Nathan MacKinnon will do exactly that. Hall will join a contender and possibly push Colorado over the edge that they have desperately been trying to cross over.
As for the rest, here’s what I got.
- Torey Krug (D) 2019-2020 (Boston) —> Detroit Red Wings
- Tyson Barrie (D) 2019-2020 (Toronto) —> Toronto Maple Leafs
- Jacob Markstrom (G) 2019-2020 (Vancouver) —> Edmonton Oilers
- Mike Hoffman (LW/RW) 2019-2020 (Florida) —> Carolina Hurricanes
- Braden Holtby (G) 2019-2020 (Washington) —> Calgary Flames
- Evgenii Dadonov (RW)- 2019-2020 (Florida) —> Florida Panthers
- Tyler Toffoli (RW/LW) 2019-2020 (Vancouver) —> Los Angeles Kings
- Mikael Granlund (C/LW) 2019-2020 (Nashville) —> Nashville Predators
One more time just as a friendly reminder, NHL free agency starts this Friday!