Toronto Maple Leafs 2024 NHL Free Agency Live Blog: Stamkos, Marchessault, Skjei to Nashville

Photo credit:Kim Klement Neitzel-USA TODAY Sports
Eric Cruikshank
20 days ago
Welcome to the first day of what promises to be a frenzied free agency period, we’re looking forward to several millions of dollars in new transactions being handed out at the speed of sound. The Leafs Nation will have you covered for everything you have may missed in what’s being promised as a summer of change by Brendan Shanahan and Brad Treliving.
In case you missed it, and who could blame you, the Maple Leafs did some furious, preemptive work ahead of the official free agency window opening. Max Domi signed a four-year extension worth an annual average value of $3.75 million per year, then celebrated with an ode to The Wolf of Wall Street. It may have been the breaking point for Tyler Bertuzzi and his camp, as they told TSN’s Darren Dreger that the 29-year-old will not be returning to the Maple Leafs. Ah, what a difference a year makes as Domi and Bertuzzi were the headliners of Toronto’s free agency class last summer.
Nick Robertson has reportedly asked the Maple Leafs for a trade, after the team tendered him a qualifying offer before Sunday’s RFA deadline. Robertson finished second in goals/60 at 5-on-5 for the Maple Leafs last season but ultimately couldn’t stay in the lineup consistently enough to become a mainstay despite his immense talent and release point, as he’s faced a number of injuries, while being prone to defensive lapses. It’s hard to believe sometimes that Robertson is just 22-years-old, but he may have played his final game for the club — provided that Brad Treliving and his staff honour his request.
And of course, how can we forget about the Maple Leafs acquiring the rights to Chris Tanev in a trade with the Dallas Stars on Saturday! Tanev, a Toronto native and graduate of East York Collegiate, is widely considered one of the best defencemen available on this year’s market. The 34-year-old is a genuine, right-handed top-pair option that the Maple Leafs have desperately been looking for although some factions of the fan base are worried about Tanev’s age and potential decline.
This essentially recaps what’s been an exceptionally busy weekend in Leafs Nation. Here’s what you need to know from the first day of free agency:
News and rumours:
2:45PM ET — The Pittsburgh Penguins have signed Anthony Beauvillier to a one-year, $1.25 million contract. Beauvillier bounced around the league in 2023-24, splitting time between the Vancouver Canucks, Chicago Blackhawks, and Nashville Predators.
2:31 PM ET — The Philadelphia Flyers have announced they signed 2023 7th overall draft pick Matvei Michkov to a three-year entry-level contract.
2:26 PM ET — Former Maple Leafs goaltender Jack Campbell has signed a one-year, $775k contract with the Detroit Red Wings. It was a disastrous season for Campbell, and he’ll be joining a crowded locker room of goaltenders including Ville Husso, Alex Lyon, and the newly acquired Cam Talbot.
1:56 PM ET — The New York Rangers have acquired Reilly Smith from the Pittsburgh Penguins in exchange for draft picks. Smith won a Stanley Cup with the Golden Knights in 2022 and had 40 points with the Penguins in 2023-24.
The Penguins will be retaining 25% of Smith’s contract.
1:47 PM ET — The New York Islanders have finally dipped their toes into free agency, signing Anthony Duclair to a four-year contract with an AAV of $3.5 million. After being traded to the Tampa Bay Lightning at the 2024 trade deadline, the 28-year-old put up 15 points in the final 17 games of the regular season.
1:43 PM ET — The Dallas Stars are looking to fill in the hole on their blue line left by Chris Tanev, signing Matt Dumba to a two-year, $7.5 million deal.
The Stars also signed former Maple Leafs defenceman Ilya Lyubushkin to a two-year, $9.9 million deal.
1:33 PM ET — The Florida Panthers have lost another UFA as Ryan Lomberg has agreed to a two-year, $4 million deal with the Calgary Flames.
1:30 PM ET — After parting ways with Logan Thompson at day one of the draft, the Vegas Golden Knights are on the verge of signing former Maple Leafs goaltender Ilya Samsonov to a one-year contract. The 27-year-old is coming off the worst statistical season of his career, recording a .890 SV% and a 3.13 GAA in 40 games played.
1:19 PM ET — Further to previous rumours, Golden Knights UFA Chandler Stephenson is closing in on a seven year deal with the Seattle Kraken. The Kraken have already added Brandon Montour, and now get some great middle-six speed and scoring with Stephenson. The AAV is $6.25 million according to Sportsnet’s Elliotte Friedman.
1:14 PM ET — Veteran defencemen Matt Grzelcyk has signed a one-year deal worth $2.75 million to join the Pittsburgh Penguins. Grzelcyk spent all eight years of his career previously with the Boston Bruins.
1:12 PM ET — The Dallas Stars have completed their tandem for the future by signing Casey DeSmith to a three-year, $3 million deal. DeSmith played 29 regular season games for the Vancouver Canucks in the 2023-24 season, recording an .896 SV% and a 2.85 GAA.
1:12 PM ET — The Nashville Predators have bolstered their goaltending depth by adding Scott Wedgewood on a two-year deal. This comes after the Predators agreed to a massive eight-year, $62 million extension with Juuse Saros.
1:10 PM ET — The Carolina Hurricanes lose another free agent to the New Jersey Devils, with Stefan Noesen agreeing to a three-year,  $8.25 million contract. Noesen played for thee Devils from 2016-19 and finished with a career-high 37 points with the Hurricanes this season.
12:57 PM ET — The Vegas Golden Knights continue to see some significant roster turnover with their forwards as Michael Amadio is joining the Ottawa Senators on a three-year deal. Ottawa also signed veteran winger David Perron to a two-year, $8 million deal as well as former Maple Leaf Noah Gregor to a one-year, $850k deal.
12:52 PM ET — After a Stanley Cup Final appearance, Warren Foegele is leaving the Edmonton Oilers to join the Los Angeles Kings on a three year deal in with an AAV in the range of $3 million, according to Sportsnet’s Elliotte Friedman.
12:46 PM ET — Veteran goaltender Cam Talbot is joining the Detroit Red Wings on a two-year, $5 million contract. Talbot will be joining a crowded room of goaltenders with Ville Husso and Alex Lyon, who both made cases to be their starter of the future.
12:43 PM ET — After a resurgence with former QMJHL teammate Nathan MacKinnon, Jonathan Drouin has agreed to stay with the Colorado Avalanche on a one-year deal worth $2.5 million.
12:34 PM ET — After losing Nikita Zadorov, Elias Lindholm, Ilya Mikheyev and Sam Lafferty, the Vancouver Canucks announced they have signed Jake DeBrusk to a seven-year, $38.5 million contract.
Canucks GM Patrik Allvin also announced the signings of Danton Heinen (two years, $4.5 million) and Kiefer Sherwood (two years, $3 million).
12:28 PM ET — According to Frank Seravalli of Daily Faceoff, the Los Angeles Kings have agreed to a four-year, $15.2 million deal with former Toronto Maple Leafs defenceman Joel Edmunsson.
12:23 PM ET — Sean Monahan is reuniting with Johnny Gaudreau, heading to the Columbus Blue Jackets on a five-year, $27.5 million deal. Monahan joined the Winnipeg Jets at the 2024 trade deadline and finished with 26 goals and 59 points on the season.
12:20 PM ET — Veteran defenceman Brenden Dillon is joining the New Jersey Devils on a three-year, $12 million deal. Dillon spent the last three seasons with the Winnipeg Jets, and joins Brett Pesce as another big addition to New Jersey’s defensive core.
12:18 PM ET — The Calgary Flames have re-signed Yegor Sharangovich to a five-year, $28.75 million extension. The 26-year-old scored a career-high 31 goals in his first season with the Flames.
12:16 PM ET — The Edmonton Oilers are looking to add some middle-six scoring by signing Viktor Arvidsson to a two-year, $8 million contract. Arvidsson missed 64 regular season games due to injury in 2023-24.
12:15 PM ET — Further to previous rumours, Steven Stamkos (four years, $32 million), Jonathan Marchessault (five years, $27 million), and Brady Skjei (seven years, $49 million) are all joining Barry Trotz and the Nashville Predators.
12:00 PM ET — The Boston Bruins have made two major moves to keep their competitive window alive, signing Elias Lindholm (seven years, $54.25 million) and Nikita Zadorov (six years, $30 million), both from the Vancouver Canucks. We are still waiting on contract details for both players.
12:00 PM ET — Anthony Mantha is heading to western Canada, agreeing to a one-year, $3.5 million deal with the Calgary Flames. Mantha was traded from the Washington Capitals to the Vegas Golden Knights at the 2024 trade deadline in February, and finished with 23 goals and 44 points.
11:57 AM ET — The Toronto Maple Leafs have acquired two Florida Panthers fresh off their Stanley Cup win after signing goaltender Anthony Stolarz to a two year, $4.4 million deal, and Oliver Ekman-Larsson to a four-year, $14 million contract.
11:57 AM ET — The Washington Capitals continue to make pivotal decisions to shake up their core, acquiring defenceman Jakob Chychrun from the Ottawa Senators in exchange for Nick Jensen and a 2026 third-round pick.
11:51 AM ET — After being traded to the Chicago Blackhawks along with Ilya Mikheyev, UFA Sam Lafferty has agreed to a two-year deal with the Buffalo Sabres. The 29-year-old scored a career-high 13 goals with Vancouver in 2023-24, and will be a big depth addition to a top-heavy Sabres offense.
11:46 AM ET — The Carolina Hurricanes have managed to retain one of their many free agents, as they’ve agreed to a three-year deal with Jordan Martinook with an AAV of $3.05 million according to Sportsnet’s Elliotte Friedman.
11:42 AM ET — Further to previous rumours, Jonathan Marchessault is closing in on a five-year contract with the Nashville Predators, with Pierre LeBrun reporting that his deal will carry an AAV of $5.5 million. The Vegas Golden Knights were more than capable of matching this contract, but their cutthroat management style continues to prevail, and they wouldn’t even bend for one of their star players.
11:36 AM ET — The San Jose Sharks are looking to add some scoring to their roster, and according to Kevin Weekes, have agreed to a four-year, $24 million contract with Tyler Toffoli. Toffoli finished with 33 goals between New Jersey and Winnipeg, and may point to signs of an accelerated rebuild being in the works in San Jose.
11:31 AM ET — The Nashville Predators are primed for a big summer, as reports have them linked as the frontrunners to sign Steven Stamkos, and as Pierre LeBrun reports, are also in talks with Jonathan Marchessault and Brady Skjei. TSN’s Chris Johnston noted that they’ve also got interest in Golden Knights free agent Chandler Stephenson.
11:20 AM ET — The Carolina Hurricanes continue to see some significant roster turnover, as Teuvo Teeravainen has agreed to a three-year, $16.2 million with the Chicago Blackhawks. The 29-year-old finished with a career-high 25 goals, and is reuniting with the team that drafted him 18th overall in 2012.
11:12 AM ET — As a pending UFA, Brandon Montour didn’t have much time to celebrate his Stanley Cup win with the Florida Panthers, and according to Pierre LeBrun, he has agreed to a seven-year contract with the Seattle Kraken worth upwards of $50 million. The Kraken get a huge offensive boost to their blue line, but it’s a major long-term investment in the 30-year-old.
11:02 AM ET — The Washington Capitals have signed former Kings defenceman Matt Roy to a seven-year, $38.5 million contract. The deal will carry an annual cap hit of $5.5 million.
10:59 AM ET — The Washington Capitals continue their busy offseason and have agreed to a two-year, $4.2 million extension with Connor McMichael. The Capitals have already acquired Pierre-Luc Dubois from the Los Angeles Kings and goaltender Logan Thompson from the Vegas Golden Knights.
10:43 AM ET — According to Pierre LeBrun, the Nashville Predators have emerged as the frontrunners to sign Steven Stamkos.
10:30 AM ET — The Toronto Maple Leafs have made their first big signing of the day, agreeing on a six-year deal with defensemen Chris Tanev, who’s UFA rights they acquired from the Dallas Stars on Friday. Tanev’s deal will carry a $4.5 million AAV, and he’ll be relied on as the Leafs’ shutdown man for the foreseeable future.
10:13 AM ET — One of Carolina’s other free agent defencemen, Brett Pesce, has reportedly agreed to a six-year contract with the New Jersey Devils. According to Chris Johnston, the contract will sit in the range of $5.5 million AAV.
10:05 AM ET — Despite a poor regular season, a solid playoff run earned Connor Brown a one-year, $1 million extension with the Edmonton Oilers.
9:30 AM ET — Jaccob Slavin will remain with the Carolina Hurricanes for the foreseeable future. One of the NHL’s premier defensive specialists, Slavin is expected to sign an eight-year extension worth $51 million with the Hurricanes, keeping him with the only professional team he’s ever known. He is elite at breaking up odd-man rushes and would be a dream for 31 other teams, but Carolina realized his internal value and wisely kept him in-house.
9:00 AM ET — Major bag alert: Jake Guentzel will be paid handsomely upon joining the Tampa Bay Lightning, joining the Atlantic power on a seven-year contract worth $9 million annually via multiple sources. Guentzel is one of the league’s premier power forwards and will make an instant impact for Tampa Bay. Was it worth losing Stamkos over? We’ll find out in the ensuing seasons but the Lightning got their man, one of the premier players from this year’s class.
8:45 AM ET — Toronto’s hopes of retaining both of their big-name free agent forwards are finished, as Tyler Bertuzzi has agreed to sign a four-year contract with the Chicago Blackhawks. Unlike Max Domi, the AAV was clearly much more important for Bertuzzi, who joins a Blackhawks team that is far away from competing for a playoff spot.
8:30 AM ET — Good morning and welcome back! Anthony Stolarz is reportedly down to three finalists: the Toronto Maple Leafs, the Florida Panthers and the Chicago Blackhawks via TSN’s Darren Dreger. Stolarz served as Sergei Bobrovsky’s backup but quietly sported one of the best analytical profiles of any goaltender last year, saving 20 goals above expected via MoneyPuck in all situations, the third-best total among all goaltenders with 25 appearances. He would be a major asset to the Maple Leafs and would work in tandem with Joseph Woll, with a chance of pushing for a genuine No. 1 role.
12:00 AM ET — Steven Stamkos will test free agency and the Nashville Predators, Detroit Red Wings, Los Angeles Kings and New Jersey Devils among the teams with primary interest in the 34-year-old via Daily Faceoff’s Frank Seravalli. Stamkos is the greatest player in Tampa Bay Lightning history but it appears evident that the only club he’s played for will prioritize a long-term deal for Jake Guentzel, which may come in around the $9 million annual average value tag.
Jonathan Marchessault will also be testing free agency. The 33-year-old won the Conn Smythe trophy with the Golden Knights in 2022-23 and finished with a career-high 42 goals at the conclusion of 2023-24.
Sam Reinhart signed an eight-year deal worth $8.625 million annually to remain with the Stanley Cup champion Florida Panthers. Reinhart scored 57 goals last season, finishing with 94 points and was arguably the NHL’s best player on the man advantage last season, while featuring as one of the league’s best defensive forwards, earning down-ballot Selke consideration. This is a massive win for the Panthers, who are operating in a different tier at the moment.

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