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NHL Insider Talks Reasons For Issues Between Laine and Jets

Elliotte Friedman discussed the issues going on between Patrik Laine and the Winnipeg Jets and talks what the eventual outcome might be.

Patrik Laine Jets

Sportsnet’s Elliotte Friedman was recently a guest on the Oilers Now radio show and discussed a number of topics in the NHL rumor mill. Among them, host Bob Stauffer and Friedman talked about what’s going on in Winnipeg, specifically if there’s fire where the smoke seems to surround Patrik Laine.

Friedman couldn’t definitively say the team was trying to move the winger, but he did admit there is talk coming out of that organization when it comes to Laine’s future. Friedman said during the interview, “There’s something going on there.”

He added:

“I don’t know if Laine is not happy, or whatever it is. I think he wants to play with [Mark] Scheifele, I’m not sure that’s what Winnipeg is looking at right now, there’s something there.”

Laine has one season remaining on a $6.75 million contract, which will see him become a restricted free agent when that contract ends. Despite salary cap issues facing every NHL team, the consensus is Laine will be due a raise and there’s some question about whether or not either side sees the other as a long-term fit. For Laine, he needs his last season before his contract ends to be one where he has the best chance to up his numbers after a down season. If the Jets aren’t going to partner him up with the best possible teammates, perhaps that’s where the frustration comes into play.

As such, trade speculation has popped up, with Laine making the TSN Trade Bait Board.

Patrik Laine
via Sportsnet

What Would the Asking Price for Laine Be?

When Stauffer asked if we could see a trade with a team like the Montreal Canadiens for Max Domi and draft picks, Friedman balked at the idea, saying, “If you are trading that guy the return has to be enormous…” He added, that he wasn’t trying to downplay Domi, but he did add, “I don’t know if Max Domi and picks is going to be enough. This is a guy that is still rounding his game but has all the hallmarks of an elite goal scorer.”

That said, the Jets may not want to be too picky.

Freidman noted that the Jets know it won’t be easy to sign Laine when the time comes and that the closer the sniper gets to unrestricted free agency, the more likely they lose him for nothing if Laine isn’t keen on staying. This is exactly what happened with defenseman Jacob Trouba and why the Jets felt forced to trade him. Once again, Winnipeg needs to be ready to pull the trigger on a deal if one presents itself.

Next: Kessel Listed Among Possible Cap Casualty Trade Names

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