The Best Landing Spots for Jake Guentzel

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Carolina Hurricanes’ Left Wing Jake Guentzel will become an Unrestricted Free Agent (UFA) on July 1st. He’s coming off a 30-goal, 47-assist, 77-point year split between the Pittsburgh Penguins and the Carolina Hurricanes. The Hurricanes traded for Guentzel at the deadline by sending Matthew Bunting, prospects Vasily Ponomarev and Ville Koivunen, the rights to forward Cruz Lucius, a conditional first-round pick in the 2024 NHL Draft, and a conditional fifth-round pick in the 2024 draft. The Penguins received a haul for Guentzel, but with the Penguins fighting for a playoff spot the locker room and Guentzel himself were blindsided by the trade. Penguins fans may want Guentzel to return, but at this point, it seems unlikely as GM Kyle Dubas likely burned that bridge to the ground.

Related Post: Boston Bruins Might Be Left With a Void At Left Wing

So, with the Penguins out as a potential landing spot, where does the 5’11, 180 lbs winger end up? Here are 5 possible landing spots that seem like the best fit for the speedy winger:

  1. Carolina Hurricanes – The Hurricanes have the cap space (over 26.5 million, according to CapFriendly) to sign Guentzel and pair him with Sebastian Aho for many years. The Hurricanes also have several UFA’s they’ll need to consider re-signing (Jordan Martinook, Stefan Noesen, Teuvo Teravainen, Jalen Chatfield, Anthony Deangelo, Brett Pesce, and Brady Skjei), and that doesn’t even include the Restricted Free Agents (RFA’s) that will be looking for raises. If the Canes decide to go after Guentzel, it will come at the expense of at least a few of these players. Carolina would love to have him back but it may not be the best fit with their looming cap crunch.
  2. Chicago Blackhawks – Why would the 29-year-old go to the lowly Blackhawks? Two words, Connor Bedard. Bedard could use a speedy weapon like Guentzel on his left side for the next 7-8 years. Guentzel is a midwestern guy, maybe he wants to play closer to home with an original 6 franchise with a generational pivot. There are worse places to play than on Bedard’s wing for the next 8 years. He will undoubtedly be productive. Guentzel also brings Stanley Cup-winning experience. Guentzel’s experience with Crosby in Pittsburgh would be an attractive bonus in the eyes of Blackhawks leadership as Guentzel may be able to pass along some of the wisdom gained in playing with another all-world center. The Blackhawks appear willing to pay Guentzel to accelerate the rebuild underway, and they have plenty of cap space available to do it with almost 34 million, and not many UFA’s Chicago will keep.
  3. Boston Bruins – David Pastrnak needs help offensively, and Guentzel could certainly provide that. The 29-year-old has scored at least 30 goals in the last three seasons and at least 20 in every full season Guentzel’s been in the league. He’s scored 40 goals twice. The Nebraska native would immediately become the best goal scorer the Bruins have not named David Pastrnak. The Bruins also have a potential hole at left wing after the departures of Taylor Hall, and Tyler Bertuzzi, a couple of years ago and possibly Jake DeBrusk, Danton Heinen, and James van Riemsdyk this year. The Bruins have over 20 million dollars to spend, a large chunk of that will go to RFA goalie Jeremy Swayman, but Don Sweeney and the Bruins’ front office have enough for Guentzel and another impact forward. With Pastrnak entering his prime, now is the time to add impact players if Boston wants to contend for a Stanley Cup.
  4. Vancouver Canucks – The Canucks may only be a player or two away from being a legit cup contender. If Demko was healthy in the playoffs it may have been a different story anyway. Vancouver has almost 24 million in cap space; they do have some players to take care of (Tyler Myers, Nikita Zadorov, and Filip Hronek, to name a few). They have offered 7×7 to Elias Lindholm, who has inexplicably turned it down, according to Elliote Friedman (That’s a bold strategy Cotton!) If the Canucks are willing to pay Lindholm 7 million a year, they certainly would be willing to give Jake Guentzel a little more than that. If Guentzel is looking for a contending team with some great offensive weapons to play beside, he could do a lot worse than the Vancouver Canucks.
  5. Nashville Predators – Nashville will be looking to build upon their playoff appearance last season, and with 26+ million in cap space to spend, Guentzel could be an attractive option for the Preds. After the underrated Filip Forsberg, their forwards don’t have a lot of scoring punch. Ryan O’Reilly was 2nd on the team in goals but is starting to get up there in years. Guentzel would be a nice fit with Nashville, although he may have to play his off-wing because he and Forsberg are both left wings. Nashville was 10th in the league in goals with a balanced attack, but adding a speedy winger with 40-goal potential may be an intriguing option for a team looking to go deeper into the playoffs.

Season 3. Episode 49. Prospects Rankings 26-30 Bruins Benders Podcast

Join the Bruins Benders Podcast as they cover the HOTTEST topics in the Boston Bruins market, along with… – Prospect Rankings 26-30- Early Line Projections- Most Hated NHL Franchises- Cole Spicer Steps Away& Much More!DraftKings Sportsbook – Boston’s hometown Sportsbook is LIVE right here in Massachusetts! Bet local on all your favorite sports from the comfort of your own home with DraftKings. To celebrate, ALL new customers will receive up to TWO HUNDRED DOLLARS in BONUS bets when you sign up for DraftKings Sportsbook using code ITR! You can now bet local on money lines, spreads, props, and more with one of America’s top-rated Sportsbooks – DraftKings Sportsbook!  Download the DraftKings Sportsbook app and sign up with code ITR to get up to TWO HUNDRED DOLLARS in BONUS bets to use now that mobile sports betting is live in Massachusetts. That’s code ITR only at DraftKings Sportsbook. If you or a loved one is experiencing problems with gambling, call 800 327-5050 or visit helplineMA.org to speak with a trained specialist, free and confidentially, twenty four seven. 21+. Physically present in MA. Eligibility restrictions apply. Subject to regulatory licensing requirements. Eligibility and deposit restrictions apply. Opt in required. Bonus issued as free bets. Terms at draftkings.com/MA.
  1. Season 3. Episode 49. Prospects Rankings 26-30
  2. Season 3. Episode 48. Arbitration Deadline
  3. Season 3. Episode 47. Free Agency Begins
  4. Season 3. Episode 46. Draft Night
  5. Season 3. Episode 45. After the Hugs Are Gone

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