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Off-Season Watch: Sunday's latest from around the NHL

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TSN.ca Staff
6/15/2014 12:36:11 PM
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With the NHL Draft coming up on June 27 and free agency opening on July 1, discussions between NHL general managers are already heating up towards a busy off-season.

Each day, TSN.ca provides the latest rumours, reports and speculation from around the NHL beat.

Farewell to Broadway?

Fluto Shinzawa of the Boston Globe reports that the New York Rangers are considering using a compliance buyout on centre Brad Richards.

Ricards is 34-years-old and has six remaining on his current deal that carries an annual cap hit of $6,666,667. The former Conn Smythe-winner is unlikely to see out his full contract and, if he were to retire early, the Rangers would be on the hook for the remainder of the deal as per the new CBA's cap benefit recapture penalty. This would effectively mean that the Rangers would be carrying dead money against the cap, something that would cripple any club.

Since the implementation of the compliance buyout option, teams have used it for 15 players including Richards's former Tampa Bay Lightning teammate, Vincent Lecavalier.

Not so Wild about Vanek?

Thomas Vanek is no longer a sure thing for the Minnesota Wild, so says Michael Russo of the Minneapolis Star Tribune.

The connection to Minnesota for Vanek is obvious. Vanek starred for a the 2003 NCAA Champion Minnesota Golden Gophers, winning the Frozen Four MVP and became the first-ever freshman to do so. Still, Russo believes that the emergence of the Wild's young core that helped upset the Colorado Avalanche in the first round of the playoffs, coupled with Vanek's poor post-season with the Montreal Canadiens means that the team has cooled its interest in the Austrian.

Vanek had five goals and five assists in 17 playoff games for the Canadiens.

Getting Drafty in here?

Josh Cooper of the Tennessean writes that the Nashville Predators could be looking at acquiring a second first-round pick in this month's NHL Draft.

The Predators hold the 11th pick in the draft, but also have two second-round selections (numbers 42 and 46 with the latter gained from the Detroit Red Wings as part of the David Legwand trade) and could use both of those to grab a second pick in the first round.

Poile says that no movement will happen until the actual day of the draft.

The last time the Predators had two first-rounders was in 2008, when they selected Colin Wilson and Chet Pickard.

Brad Richards (Photo: The Canadian Press)

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(Photo: The Canadian Press)
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