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Laine, Marner, Rantanen among top unsigned restricted free agents

Connor, Point, Tkachuk, others waiting for contract or offer sheet

by David Satriano @davidsatriano / NHL.com Staff Writer

With about a month until training camps open, NHL.com takes a closer look at the top remaining restricted free agents.

A restricted free agent can receive an offer sheet contract from another team, which forward Sebastian Aho did from the Montreal Canadiens on July 1. His team can match the contract (which the Carolina Hurricanes did with Aho) or receive draft-pick compensation based on its value. Any restricted free agent who does not sign by Dec. 1 cannot play for the remainder of the NHL season.

Here are the significant remaining RFAs (listed alphabetically by position):

 

[RELATED: Best remaining unrestricted free agents | NHL Free Agent Tracker]

 

Forwards

Brock Boeser, Vancouver Canucks

Boeser and the Canucks each said in July they were confident they would come to an agreement. The 22-year-old had 56 points (26 goals, 30 assists) in 69 games after he was second among NHL rookies with 29 goals and fifth with 55 points in 62 games in 2017-18, when he finished second in voting for the Calder Trophy (awarded to the NHL rookie of the year) behind Mathew Barzal of the New York Islanders. Boeser, who has 116 points (59 goals, 57 assists) in 140 NHL games, is not eligible to sign an offer sheet because he played fewer than 10 games his first NHL season (2016-17).

 

Kyle Connor, Winnipeg Jets

Connor said Aug. 14 his plan is to re-sign with the Jets before training camp. The 22-year-old had NHL career highs in goals (34), assists (32) and points (66) in 82 games last season, after leading NHL rookies with 31 goals in 2017-18. Connor has 128 points (67 goals, 61 assists) in 178 NHL games and 15 points (six goals, nine assists) in 23 Stanley Cup Playoff games.

 

Patrik Laine, Winnipeg Jets

He had one of the best goal-scoring months in NHL history with 18 in 12 games in November but scored nine the rest of the regular season, including one in the final 19 games for the Jets. The 21-year-old finished with 30 goals, 20 assists and 50 points in 82 games, each the lowest total of his three-season NHL career, but he's scored at least 30 goals in each season (44 in 2017-18, 36 in 2016-17) and has 184 points (110 goals, 74 assists) in 237 NHL games.

Video: STL@WPG, Gm2: Laine blasts one-timer past Binnington

 

Mitchell Marner, Toronto Maple Leafs

The Athletic reported that the Maple Leafs are proposing a three-year, six-year or seven-year contract for Marner, who it said wants a contract similar to the one teammate Auston Matthews signed in February (five years, $11.6 million per season). The 22-year-old had NHL career highs in goals (26), assists (68), points (94) and plus/minus (plus-22) in 82 games last season, ranking fourth in the League in assists and 11th in points. Marner had more goals, assists and points than the previous season in each of the past two, his second and third in the NHL.

 

Brayden Point, Tampa Bay Lightning

Tampa Bay general manager Julien BriseBois reiterated July 29 that he is confident a deal will get done before training camp. The 23-year-old had a breakout season with NHL career highs in goals (41), assists (51), points (92) and rating (plus-27) in 79 games. Point finished tied for second on the Lightning in goals with Steven Stamkos, four behind Nikita Kucherov, and his 92 points were third behind Kucherov (128) and Stamkos (98). Point tied for sixth in the NHL in goals and 12th in points.

 

Mikko Rantanen, Colorado Avalanche

The Denver Post reported Rantanen is unlikely to sign until other restricted free agents do so, though GM Joe Sakic has said Rantanen will be in Colorado for a long time. He had NHL career highs in goals (31), assists (56) and points (87) in 74 games last season, and was highly effective on the power play (16 goals, 33 points). Rantanen had more goals, assists and points than the previous season in each of the past three (he was held without a point in nine games in 2015-16), and the 22-year-old was the second-leading scorer for the Avalanche behind center Nathan MacKinnon (99 points; 41 goals, 58 assists) in 2018-19. Rantanen has 209 points (80 goals, 129 assists) in 239 NHL games.

 

Matthew Tkachuk, Calgary Flames

Calgary GM Brad Treliving said Aug. 2 the Flames are confident they will re-sign Tkachuk before training camp. In his third season, Tkachuk had NHL career highs in goals (34), assists (43) and points (77) in 80 games. The 21-year-old had 28 more points (including seven more on the power play) than he did in 2017-18. Tkachuk has 174 points (71 goals, 103 assists) in 224 NHL games.

 

Defensemen

Charlie McAvoy, Boston Bruins

Boston president Cam Neely told NBC Sports Boston on Aug. 2 that talks were status quo and the Bruins have a plan to start training camp without Brandon Carlo and McAvoy. The 21-year-old had 28 points (seven goals, 21 assists) in 54 games last season and eight points (two goals, six assists) in 23 playoff games. He led Boston in average ice time per game during the regular season (22:10) and playoffs (24:30), when they advanced to the Stanley Cup Final, losing to the St. Louis Blues in seven games. McAvoy has 60 points (14 goals, 46 assists) in 117 NHL games and 16 points (three goals, 13 assists) in 41 playoff games. He is not eligible to sign an offer sheet because he played fewer than 10 games his first NHL season (2016-17).

Video: STL@BOS, Gm1: McAvoy rips shot by Binnington for PPG

 

Ivan Provorov, Philadelphia Flyers

Philadelphia GM Chuck Fletcher said July 12 that the Flyers are trying to get Provorov signed as quickly as they can. Provorov had 26 points (seven goals, 19 assists), 149 blocked shots and 123 hits in 82 games last season. The 22-year-old, who ranked sixth in the NHL in average ice time per game (25:07), has 97 points (30 goals, 67 assists) in 246 NHL games and hasn't missed a game in his NHL career.

 

Zach Werenski, Columbus Blue Jackets

Werenski's agent, Pat Brisson, said Aug. 13 the intention is for the 21-year-old to re-sign with Columbus before training camp. He had 44 points (11 goals, 33 assists) in 82 games last season and six points (one goal, five assists) in 10 playoff games. Werenski was a finalist for the Calder Trophy in 2015-16, when he had 47 points (11 goals, 36 assists) and was plus-17 in 78 games. He has 128 points (38 goals, 90 assists) in 237 NHL games.

 

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