Utah HC Should Make Big Offer For 2 Top Free Agent Centermen

The Utah HC have a lot of work to do this offseason and it starts with bringing in more high-end talent that is already established. Re-signing and adding to the defense aside, the team is weak down the middle.

Without any moves, the center depth projects to be Nick Bjugstad, Barrett Hayton, Logan Cooley, and Jack McBain. Bjugstad should be a third liner at best on any team, especially one with playoff aspirations. Good thing there is a ton of cap space to throw money at some top players in free agency.

The unfortunate part is that Utah is going to have to compete with a number of teams to get the best of the crop available, which is what they need. The two that stand out and must be targeted by Utah are Elias Lindholm and Chandler Stephenson. While Lindholm has two-way prowess, Stephenson has done very well the past few seasons and scored more points in 2023-24.

Lindholm reportedly rejected a contract offer to stay in Calgary before being traded, then rejected another contract to stay in Vancouver long-term. The length of the contracts he's being offered isn't the issue. It is likely the destinations. He is still a good player despite a tough year. His role would be big on Utah and for a couple of years at least, he would be the top line center.

Stephenson is going to get a nice raise and he's established himself as a player capable of playing in the top-6. He's done so effectively for the Vegas Golden Knights now and produced 51 points while playing 18:29 per game this season. He's better than what Utah has and the team is long past due to turn things around and climb into a playoff spot.

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