Report: Five Teams Interested In Trading For Capitals’ Evgeny Kuznetsov

Photo: NHL.com

The Fourth Period’s David Pagnotta wrote in his latest Summer Trade Watch piece on Friday that the Columbus Blue Jackets, Anaheim Ducks, Seattle Kraken, Florida Panthers, and Montreal Canadiens are interested in trading for Washington Capitals center Evgeny Kuznetsov.

“The Capitals need to free up some salary cap space and moving Kuznetsov and his $7.8M AAV will help in doing so. Yes, the rumours of his off-ice ordeals through the pandemic have played a factor, as well, but the [Capitals] aren’t going to just give him away. There’s a very good chance he’s wearing a different jersey next season,” Pagnotta said.

Daily Faceoff’s Frank Seravalli wrote on June 23 in his trade target piece for the offseason that “The [Capitals] are tired of Kuznetsov’s antics.”

Since setting a career-high 83 points in 79 regular-season games in 2017-18 and leading the 2018 Stanley Cup Playoffs with 32 points, the 29-year-old has seen his point-per-game average decline in each of the past three seasons. Kuznetsov’s point-per-game average dropped to 0.95 in 2018-19, 0.83 in 2019-20, and 0.71 this past season.

Meanwhile, Kuznetsov tested positive for cocaine in August 2019, which led to a four-year suspension from the IIHF and a three-game suspension by the NHL. This season, Kuznetsov broke the league’s COVID-19 protocol while playing video games in a hotel room with captain Alex Ovechkin, defenseman Dmitry Orlov, and goaltender Ilya Samsonov on the team’s season-opening road trip in Buffalo. As a result, he was experiencing COVID-19 symptoms and missed eight games. On May 3, the Capitals suspended him and Samsonov for disciplinary reasons and he missed seven games with COVID-19.

Trading Kuznetsov will be tough as he carries a $7.8 million cap hit for four more seasons.

By Harrison Brown

About Harrison Brown

Harrison is a diehard Caps fan and a hockey fanatic with a passion for sports writing. He attended his first game at age 8 and has been a season ticket holder since the 2010-2011 season. His fondest Caps memory was watching the Capitals hoist the Stanley Cup in Las Vegas. In his spare time, he enjoys travel, photography, and hanging out with his two dogs. Follow Harrison on Twitter @HarrisonB927077
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4 Responses to Report: Five Teams Interested In Trading For Capitals’ Evgeny Kuznetsov

  1. Anonymous says:

    Want cap space???? Quit giving out contracts like carlsons’, who can’t play defense if he wanted too.

  2. hockeydruid says:

    I understand that players are paid on what they have done and on what the team hopes they will do. Kuzy was a very productive player but I still think that he is doing lines of blow and the Caps will never get true value for him nor will they ever get value for Samsonov. Frankly if they had exposed Samsonov to the draft they would not have a goalie problem now. Once again you have a GM who is letting the young inexpensive talent leave town and keeping the older more expensive players. Is their plan to get into the top 10 for the draft next year because I dont see this team contending for the cup.

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