Two Western Canadian teams are apparently eyeing a pair of desert dogs.
The Edmonton Oilers, Calgary Flames, Carolina Hurricanes, Chicago Blackhawks, and San Jose Sharks are among the clubs who have asked about Arizona Coyotes goaltender Darcy Kuemper, according to Sportsnet's Elliotte Friedman.
Additionally, the Oilers, Flames, and Boston Bruins have checked in on Arizona captain Oliver Ekman-Larsson's availability, Friedman said, adding that there are undoubtedly even more interested teams.
Kuemper was one of the NHL's best netminders this season, although he was not one of the three Vezina Trophy finalists. He finished third in the league with a .928 save percentage, third with a 2.22 goals-against average, and fourth with 16.65 goals saved above average. However, injury limited him to just 29 games.
The 6-foot-5 Kuemper was stellar in 2018-19 as well, posting a .925 save percentage and a 2.33 goals-against average in 55 games. The 30-year-old is under contract for two more seasons with a $4.5-million cap hit.
The Oilers and Flames have obvious needs between the pipes. Mike Smith and Cam Talbot are pending unrestricted free agents. Mikko Koskinen and David Rittich remain under contract, but neither goalie has proven capable of handling No. 1 duties.
Ekman-Larsson, meanwhile, is coming off one of the worst offensive seasons of his career, tallying 30 points in 66 games. However, he averaged 17 goals and 45 points per year over the previous six campaigns. The 28-year-old just completed the first season of his eight-year extension, which carries an annual cap hit of $8.25 million, and has a full no-movement clause, per CapFriendly.
The Coyotes have named St. Louis Blues draft guru Bill Armstrong as the team's new general manager. Steve Sullivan served as the interim GM ever since John Chayka and the club parted ways.