NHL Rumors: 3 Potential Destinations for Claude Giroux

Florida Panthers forward Claude Giroux is not expected back in the sunshine state next season. The Panthers don't have a ton of cap space to work with and the veteran forward will very likely make his way to another franchise for the remainder of his playing days. Let's take a look at three teams that will be in the free-agent mix come July 13 when Giroux can sign with any other team:

Ottawa Senators

Perhaps the timing isn't perfect but there's been a ton of speculation about Giroux heading home to the Ottawa Senators. He's from the area and still has a tremendous amount of ties to the community, so there's certainly potential there for a match. However, the Senators are still a few years away and it's going to come down to what Giroux wants for chances to win the Stanley Cup. If he wants a good shot at getting one before his career is over, signing a multi-year deal in Ottawa may not do the trick.

Montreal Canadiens

The Canadiens are going to have an interesting offseason as they landed the #1 pick and have the contracts of Carey Price and Shea Weber hanging in the balance. If Price decides his knee can't go anymore, he can be moved to LTIR and the Habs will have a ton of money to work with this season. If Price decides to play it out, it will be a bit tougher to bring Giroux on board. He would be a great compliment to Nick Suzuki and expected #1 pick Shane Wright, and considering it's closer to home than he's been in the past, perhaps Giroux sees a fit in Montreal. We'll see what kind of vision general manager Kent Hughes has for his hockey club this season and if he feels the team can turn it around in only one summer, Giroux will be in red, white and blue next season.

Nashville Predators

The Predators have over $24 million to work with in salary cap space and could see Giroux has a nice addition to their forward group. Long-time Pred Filip Forsberg is a pending free agent who will gain some serious interest from other teams this summer. Giroux could be the potential cheaper replacement for Forsberg, or he could perhaps be the 'extra' missing piece Nashville adds before it's all said and done. The Predators want to find some more scoring this summer and could start with the veteran Giroux who loves to light the lamp and still has a ton of game. Keep an eye on the Predators as if they lose Forsberg they will have interest and even if they keep their group together, they had interest in Giroux in the past and perhaps they circle back come July 13.

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