Vince Dunn may have played his final game with the St. Louis Blues. Last Saturday, Sportsnet’s Elliotte Friedman reported the 24-year-old defenseman is drawing interest around the league.
This isn’t the first time Dunn’s name has surfaced in this season’s rumor mill. Back in January, The Athletic’s Jeremy Rutherford reported the Blues had placed him on the trade block, with a first-round pick as their asking price.
The Blues opted to retain Dunn for the rest of the season but could have difficulty retaining him. CapFriendly indicates they have over $66.5 million tied up in 20 players for 2021-22.
Dunn’s a restricted free agent with arbitration rights coming off a one-year deal worth $1.875 million. The Blues must also re-sign or replace Jaden Schwartz, Mike Hoffman, Tyler Bozak, Robert Thomas and Jordan Kyrou. He could be the odd man out if they protect Torey Krug, Justin Faulk and Colton Parayko in the expansion draft.
It’s no surprise that Dunn is drawing interest from other clubs. The 6-foot, 203-pounder is a young, skillful puck-moving blueliner with a left-hand shot. He’ll probably look to double his money on a longer-term deal but he could still be an affordable acquisition for some teams.
Friedman didn’t indicate which teams are calling about Dunn but they will likely be clubs with cap space trying to bolster their blueline depth. The Buffalo Sabres, Chicago Blackhawks, Detroit Red Wings, Los Angeles Kings, Ottawa Senators and Winnipeg Jets could be among the suitors.
The Blues could still seek a first-rounder in return for Dunn. However, they could lower that price rather than lose him for nothing to the Seattle Kraken.