NHL Rumors: Elliotte Friedman suggests $17,000,000 winger as alternative for Canucks instead of Jake Guentzel

NHL: Ottawa Senators at Winnipeg Jets
NHL Rumors: Elliotte Friedman suggests $17,000,000 winger as alternative for Canucks instead of Jake Guentzel (image credit: USA Today Sports/IMAGN)

It's no secret that the Vancouver Canucks made a hard push toward acquiring 2022 All-Star Jake Guentzel at the trade deadline this year. With Guentzel now prepared to hit free agency, the team has once again set their sights on signing the star forward. At the same time, NHL insider Elliotte Friedman had another suggestion for the team: Veteran center Tyler Toffoli.

Toffoli, who is fresh off a four-year $17 million contract and set to hit free agency this summer, has attracted plenty of attention as of late. In the past, both the Bruins and the Kings have been linked to Toffoli, with the pair likely to join other potential suitors this offseason as the winger prepares to hit the open market.

In the event that Vancouver misses out on Jake Guentzel, the team will need to have a contingency plan in place. After recently signed defenceman Filip Hronek to an eight-year deal worth a whopping $58 million, the path has now been cleared for the Canucks to focus on bolstering their roster.

With Jake Guentzel expected to be highly sought-after on the open market, Friedman name-dropped Tyler Toffoli as another target for the team. He spoke on a recent episode of "32 Thoughts":

"Depending on what happens in Vancouver with all these other things that they're working on, I wonder if Tyler Toffoli is back on Vancouver's radar.
"I mean, in case you missed it, I've heard and I could see Toffoli being a guy who's on the Rangers' radar too, with the money that they've got now, for sure. But with Gaudreau off, so I wondered about Toffoli in Vancouver this week, you know? And that's another name that popped into my head."

Looking at potential landing spots for Jake Guentzel this offseason

This offseason, Jake Guentzel is expected to be one of the most highly sought-after free agents on the open market. Given his production in recent years and his impressive display with the Hurricanes this postseason, he's likely to have no shortage of potential suitors.

While a deal with the Hurricanes is still a possibility, in the event that he ends up signing elsewhere there are a number of teams who could make intriguing offers. For one, the Vegas Golden Knights, who have repeatedly made runs at big-name free agents over the years, are likely to make Jake Guentzel an offer.

Of course, that is despite their salary-cap situation, however, as we've also seen in the past, dancing around the salary-cap line has never deterred Vegas. At the same time, there has been plenty of talk among fans regarding Jake Guentzel returning to Pittsburgh.

Given his history with the team, a move would certainly be an interesting one. The Penguins just traded Gentzel away, meaning they likely would have reasons for not wanting to bring him back in free agency.

Whether Guentzel winds up re-signing with the Hurricanes, returns to Pittsburgh, or joins a new team entirely, it will be interesting to see how things play out.

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Edited by John Maxwell
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