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David Pagnotta: Irfaan Gaffar and Pagnotta on some ‘Market Rumblings.’
** NHLRumors.com transcription
Gaffar: “Let’s start in California, start with the San Jose Sharks, and is Erik Karlsson really their biggest trade chip right now?”
Pagnotta: “Well he certainly drew the most attention last week when their GM Mike Grier came out and said we’re willing to listen. We’ve been talking about this for the last week. I think more than anything, this was an indication to the rest of the league that San Jose is wide open for business.
I don’t believe Erik Karlsson, first of all I don’t believe he’s going to get traded this season. I don’t think there’s an appetite for San Jose to retain half that $11.5 million cap hit. Maybe a couple million. I just think the parameters this year with four years left on his deal, are just a little too difficult.
So, Karlsson aside for the time being, they have other players that are going to generate interest from this team. And one guy in particular I believe will be a focal point for a lot of teams moving forward later in the season, is Timo Meier.
He is in the final year of his contract. He’s going to be an RFA at the end of the season. He has arbitration rights, and yes he’s making $10 million this season, which means his QO will have to be $10 million, but you can work around that and find a new contract before you submit that qualifying offer.
I think he is going to be their primary trade chip this season. So that is going to be something to watch as the season progresses.
They haven’t had any contract discussions yet with his agent Claude Lemieux, and really, it looks like he’s going to be. This is a team that wants to free up cap space and continue their rebuild by bringing in some young assets. He’s there number one trade chip right now and he’s going to be someone to take a look at later on as the season moves along.”