Trade buzz picking up; Radulov, Barrie, Malkin + more

The rumour mill has kicked into overdrive as we inch ever closer to the NHL draft and unrestricted free agency. Teams hoping to holding onto pending UFAs technically have until July 1st to lock them up, but the real day they need to worry about is June 25th, when any team can begin talking to pending UFAs. That's 21 days from now. It's crunch time.

On Evgeni Malkin: once again his name has emerged in trade speculation as the offseason nears. When assessing a report like this it's important to remember the long and bizarre history of Malkin trade rumours. Last year a story came out saying he was unhappy and wanted out - which was quickly rebuffed. The Penguins have made it clear they won't trade Malkin unless he asks for it.

While it's true the Penguins are tight against the salary cap, it's likely they remedy this situation lower down the lineup. I'm sure at some point in time the Penguins have wondered if moving Malkin would help them balance their roster, but making that move this offseason seems like a longshot. If this current version of the Penguins is what 'cap hell' looks like, it doesn't look that bad at all.

Rumour Tidbits

- Alex Radulov is still mulling over his future in the NHL, but most seem to think Detroit is in with a really good chance of signing him. If he's signed, it's probably in the next couple of weeks before attention shifts to free agency.

- Tyson Barrie's trade odds rose from 70% to 90% today. Countless reports indicate he's being shopped, and likely moves some time this month.

- Some wonder if the Blackhawks might be trying to lure over KHL forward Evgeni Dadonov. Dadonov played for the Panthers in 2012, and has come up in rumours the past two summers.

- There's a rumour floating out there that a couple NHL teams are interested in KHL forward Geoff Platt, who last played in the NHL in 2008.

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