NHL Free Agency 2020: Latest Predictions for Evgenii Dadonov, Top Wing Targets

Jake RillSenior Analyst IIIMay 11, 2020

Florida Panthers right wing Evgenii Dadonov (63) skates during the second period of an NHL hockey game against the Toronto Maple Leafs, Thursday, Feb. 27, 2020, in Sunrise, Fla. (AP Photo/Wilfredo Lee)
Wilfredo Lee/Associated Press

The NHL offseason will be unique because of the impact of the coronavirus pandemic.

It's unclear when it will even begin given it hasn't been decided whether the 2019-20 season will resume. If the campaign does conclude, it's possible that the offseason will not take place during the summer months. Plus, it's unclear what the salary cap for the 2020-21 season will be. If it doesn't go up from $81.5 million, that could influence the types of deals teams are willing to hand out.

Still, there are going to be some talented players on the free-agent market looking to work out deals with either new teams or their current employers. That includes numerous talented scorers who are capable of making big offensive impacts. Here are predictions for where several such players will end up this offseason.


Evgenii Dadonov, RW

Will the Florida Panthers be able to keep both Mike Hoffman and Evgenii Dadonov? Both are talented wingers, but with at least seven players needed to be signed and around $25 million in cap space as things stand, Florida may need to choose whom it most wants to re-sign. If that's the case, there's a strong chance it will bring back Hoffman, who is six months younger and has better numbers.

So where will Dadonov head for the next stage of his career? He's played all six of his NHL seasons with the Panthers, and he's emerged as a solid scorer the past three seasons after returning from the KHL. In 225 games over that span, Dadonov has tallied 182 points, scoring at least 25 goals in each campaign.

At 31, Dadonov likely still has some productive years ahead of him and would provide a goalscoring boost from right wing for any team that signs him. The New Jersey Devils are one such team that could have an interest in signing Dadonov.

Earlier this season, New Jersey traded left winger Taylor Hall to the Arizona Coyotes, so it could use a veteran scoring threat to help fill the void that that move created. The Devils have a lot of young players, and Dadonov could become a mentor while also contributing on the ice.

Prediction: Dadonov signs with New Jersey.


Taylor Hall, LW

Rick Scuteri/Associated Press

Speaking of Hall, he will also be hitting the free-agent market this offseason. He played 35 games for the Coyotes after getting traded midseason, tallying 27 points (10 goals and 17 assists), but it's possible he will never suit up for Arizona again if the 2019-20 season doesn't resume.

Hall could return to the Coyotes, but he might instead sign with a team that gives him a better chance to win his first career Stanley Cup. Arizona was in the thick of the playoff race but struggled in the second half of the season despite Hall's addition.

Perhaps Hall could be decide to head back to one of his former teams. The Edmonton Oilers showed this season they are already capable of reaching the playoffs—they are second in the Pacific Division—and bringing back the former NHL MVP could help them take a step toward winning the Stanley Cup.

There's no doubt Edmonton could do with a third scoring option behind Connor McDavid and Leon Draisaitl, but it could come down to finances. The Oilers already have around $73 million committed to next season's roster. Assuming the Oilers can make it work, though, there's no reason they shouldn't have interest in signing the 28-year-old left winger.

Prediction: Hall signs with Edmonton.


Tyler Toffoli, RW

TORONTO, ON - FEBRUARY 29:  Tyler Toffoli #73 of the Vancouver Canucks skates against the Toronto Maple Leafs during an NHL game at Scotiabank Arena on February 29, 2020 in Toronto, Ontario, Canada. The Maple Leafs defeated the Canucks 4-2. (Photo by Clau
Claus Andersen/Getty Images

After getting traded from the Los Angeles Kings to the Vancouver Canucks in February, Tyler Toffoli quickly made an impact. In 10 games, the 28-year-old right winger tallied six goals and four assists, becoming a key part of the Canucks' battle for a playoff spot.

It didn't take Toffoli long to find his feet with Vancouver after putting up the same number of points with the Kings in 58 games this term as he did in 82 games in 2018-19 (34). And although he is set to become an unrestricted free agent, perhaps his time with the Canucks won't be short-lived.

Vancouver clearly had no trouble integrating Toffoli into the lineup, and he provided a strong scoring option on the wing, playing a big role in a short amount of time. It wouldn't be surprising to see the Canucks find a way to keep him around for at least a few more seasons.

Toffoli should be a bit more affordable than some other top wingers on the market, such as Hall or Hoffman, which is another reason why the Canucks will opt to work out a new deal with him.

Prediction: Toffoli re-signs with Vancouver.


Cap information via Spotrac.