Each day through the Vegas expansion draft and up until free agency on July 1, TSN.ca breaks down the latest news and rumours around the NHL.

 

A Deal in Place?

The Columbus Blue Jackets do not want to lose any of their young talent in next week's Vegas Golden Knights expansion draft and may be willing to pay a hefty price tag to assure that happens, according to Aaron Portzline of the Columbus Dispatch.

According to Portzline, the Jackets have a deal in place that would send their 24th overall pick in this year's draft as well as a prospect to the Golden Knights with the promise that they will take Matt CalvertWilliam Karlsson or defenceman Ryan Murray in the expansion draft and stay away from the likes of coveted forward Josh Anderson, backup goalie Joonas Korpisalo and blueliners Jack Johnson and David Savard. Portzline notes that Pierre-Luc Dubois, the third overall pick in last year's draft, or Sonny Milano, the 16th overall pick in 2014, will not be the prospect heading to Vegas. 

Murray, 23, was the second overall pick in the 2012 NHL Entry Draft, but amassed just 11 points over 60 games with Columbus last year.

The deal may include veteran forward David Clarkson and his $5.25 million cap hit going to the Golden Knights as well. The 33-year-old played just 23 games in 2016-17 due to injury and has three-years left on his seven-year, $36.75 million contract. 

The trade, which has apparently been in the works for weeks, will not be officially announced until Wednesday night at the expansion draft. 

 

Coyotes Eyeing Stepan?

The Arizona Coyotes acquired young forward Nick Cousins from the Philadelphia Flyers late Friday night and they might have another trick up their sleeves before the trade/waiver freeze kicks in at 3pm et/Noon pt on Saturday. 
 

According to TSN Hockey Insider Bob McKenzie, the Coyotes have major interest in New York Rangers centre Derek Stepan, who has been in the midst of trade rumours for the past few days.

On Friday, Larry Brooks of the New York Post reported that the Rangers have set a first-pair defenceman as the price for Stepan's services. 

Stepan has a full no-trade clause that kicks in on July 1 and lasts for the next two seasons. He has a modified no-trade clause for the last two years of his current contract in 2019-20 and 2020-21. Stepan signed a six-year, $39 million contract with the Rangers in 2015. 

The 26-year-old American scored 17 goals and added 38 assists over 81 games with the Rangers in 2016-17, his seventh year with the club. He added two goals and four helpers over 12 playoff games this season. 

Selected by the Rangers 51st overall in the 2008 NHL Entry Draft, Stepan has 128 goals and 232 assists over 515 career games with the Blueshirts. 

 

No Interest in Gaborik? 

According to TSN Hockey Insider Pierre LeBrun, the Los Angeles Kings at one point reached out to the Golden Knights to see what it would take for them to take on veteran forward Marian Gaborik and the $19.5 million left on his contract over the next four years. 

LeBrun says he doesn't think that conversation lasted very long and the price is likely way too high for LA.

The 35-year-old has struggled over the past two seasons with the Kings as he's missed considerable time with knee and foot injuries. Over 56 games in 2016-17, the native of Slovakia scored 10 goals and added 11 assists. 

He signed a seven-year, $34.125 deal with the Kings in June of 2014.

 

From TSN Hockey Insider Darren Dreger

Rumours having been swirling about possible trades over the past few days, but it doesn’t appear anything is imminent on the Jordan Eberle front at the moment. TSN Hockey Insider Darren Dreger says while there is interest in the Edmonton Oilers winger, nothing is likely to happen until next week.  

Eberle is currently ranked third on TSN's Trade Bait List

The 27-year-old scored 20 goals and added 31 assists over 82 games with the Oilers in 2016-17, his seventh year with the organization.

He has two years left on his current contract with an average annual value of $6 million. 

Poulin: Eberle could fit with Islanders, Phaneuf should stay put

Matt Duchene will be a hot commodity but where would be his best fit? Dave Poulin discusses and explains why Jordan Eberle would be a good fit for the Islanders to compliment John Tavares, and why Dion Phaneuf should stay with the Senators.

The Blue Jackets may have a deal in place with the Golden Knights to keep them from picking certain players at the draft, but it appears the Nashville Predators are having trouble doing something similar. According to TSN Hockey Insider Darren Dreger, the Preds aren't making progress when it comes to convincing Las Vegas general manager George McPhee from locking on to a player the Predators would like to keep. 

Dreger also reports that the Detroit Red Wings aren't expected to be active as Saturday's 3pm ET trade/waiver freeze approaches and doubts anything "big" happens with the New York Islanders. However, GM Garth Snow is in the market for a top-six forward, says Dreger.