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

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TSN.ca Staff
6/16/2014 9:18:12 AM
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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.

The latest from Bob

As tweeted by TSN Hockey Insider Bob McKenzie on Monday, the Columbus Blue Jackets need to resolve their offseason plans with forward R.J. Umberger. He asked for a trade in May and makes $4.5 million in each of the next three seasons.

McKenzie adds that the last resort would be to buy out Umberger, but the Jackets remain hopeful there's a market for him.

McKenzie also reports that the Colorado Avalanche are shopping winger P.A. Parenteau. he has two years left on his deal at $4 million per year.

Craig's List

Oilers GM Craig MacTavish told The Edmonton Sun's Terry Jones that he would like to add four or five players - with one or two of them via trade and two or three through unrestricted free agency.

"It would be nice to get something in place before free agency," said MacTavish, explaining that trades were the first priority.

"The managers meeting at the final really gets everybody talking a little bit more. This week will be a busy week for everybody to see what the fits are out there.

"We had our pro scouts meeting Thursday and Friday. We had some good discussions there. This year there are not so many top free agents available. The guys who would normally be secondary targets are now the primary targets. It's a good year to be a UFA."

Richards Gone?

Larry Brooks of The New York Post writes that the Rangers have conducted their annual pre-free agency and pre-draft player evaluation meetings and adds that Brad Richards is expected to become the club's second and final amnesty buyout - perhaps as early as this week.

A buyout of Richards would clear $6.67 million of cap space for the Rangers, who would have about $24 million in space if the cap is at $70 million next season.

No Canada?

According to Bruce Garrioch of The Ottawa Sun, the Calgary Flames have made a pitch to the Senators for Jason Spezza, but a deal is unlikely to happen.

As Garrioch writes, Spezza isn't too interested in playing in Canada as the Flames, Canucks, Oilers and Jets are on his list of 10 teams that he doesn't want to be traded to.

He adds the Flames are thought to be offering Jiri Hudler, Mikael Backlund, or Dennis Wideman and one of their several second and third round draft picks.

Glen Sather and Craig MacTavish (Photo: Bruce Bennett/Getty Images)

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(Photo: Bruce Bennett/Getty Images)
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