NHL Rumors

NHL Rumors: Leafs, Yakupov, Matthews

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Leafs close to signing KHL defenceman Nikita Zaitsev

The Fourth Period: The Toronto Maple Leafs reportedly have interest in defenseman Nikita Zaitsev of the KHL’s CKSA Moscow hockey club. The Leafs interest in Zaitsev has been reported for the last two months, and the belief is the Maple Leafs will sign him at some point in the near future.

What teams are interested in Nail Yakupov?

The Hockey News: Nail Yakupov has a year remaining on his contract at an affordable $2.5 million, making him an affordable and enticing reclamation project. The Edmonton Oilers cannot sell him as a former top draft pick. Instead, they must promote him as a promising player who’s yet to pan out. Allan Muir of Sports Illustrated believes the Toronto Maple Leafs, Montreal Canadiens, Tampa Bay Lightning, New Jersey Devils, Pittsburgh Penguins and Vancouver Canucks will try and make a trade for Yakupov this summer.

What happens if the Edmonton Oilers win the draft lottery?

TSN: If the Edmonton Oilers once again win the draft lottery, Pierre LeBrun speculates they could listen to offers for the first overall pick but he believes they’ll keep it to select Auston Matthews.

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