NHL Rumors: Toronto Maple Leafs, Zdeno Chara, and the Columbus Blue Jackets
Mathew Barzal and the Islanders still talking. Canadiens were interested in signing Zdeno Chara. Bruins inquire about Pierre-Luc Dubois.
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The Maple Leafs have to call on Chara, but seems like an unlikely signing

Sportsnet: Luke Fox when asked on Sportsnet 590 about the idea of Toronto Maple Leafs GM Kyle Dubas, even though they don’t have much cap space, at least making the call on unrestricted free agent defenseman Zdeno Chara.

** NHLrumors.com transcription

“Yeah, I mean that is your job, you explore everything. I just don’t know where the cap space would come from and I’m really curious if Chara is kind of Boston or bust at this point. I don’t know if he’s willing to uproot his family and play for another team. Maybe he is, but you know, I would be surprised if Chara ends up in a Maple Leaf uniform, put it that way, but you make every call you need to make.”

Blue Jackets not worried about a Dubois deal … Keeping on eye on the UFA market

Tom Gulitti of NHL.com: The Columbus Blue Jackets still need to re-sign restricted free agent forward Pierre-Luc Dubois, but GM Jarmo Kekalainen isn’t too worried about it.

The Blue Jackets are no strangers RFA deals taking some time and getting them done by training camp.

“We’ve been in this situation before where we’ve had RFAs that want to take their time to agree on a contract, and we respect that and they have that right,” Kekalainen said. “But I’m confident he’ll be signed before training camp starts.”

Kekalainen is also keeping an eye on the unrestricted free agent market.

“We’re looking at it, but it has to be the right fit not only for the way we like to build our team, but also in the cap world,” Kekalainen said. “So term and dollars and all of that, plus how he fits into our team structure and our team culture, those are the factors that we weigh in when we make our decisions.

“So far we’ve stayed with this group and time will tell if that will be the case a month from now or two months from now. But we feel confident in our team. We feel good about our team.”