NHL Rumors: The Colorado Avalanche and Mikko Rantanen Back Talking Contract?
Rantanen talks have resumed

David Pagnotta: Have been told that contract talks between the Colorado Avalanche and Mikko Rantanen‘s camp have resumed recently. Things may not be close, but contract talks continue.

Rantanen only interested in playing in the NHL

NHL.com: Colorado Avalanche restricted free agent forward Mikko Rantanen said to a Russian media outlet that he is only interested in playing in the NHL this season.

There was a report earlier this offseason that Ak Bars of the KHL offered him $4 million a season.

“Whether that team got in touch, it’s better to check with my agent. I personally haven’t heard anything,” Rantanen told the website in comments translated by NHL.com. “The only option for me is the NHL. And you never know what the future holds.”

Rantanen is skating in Norway while he waits for a new deal. Back in mid-August Avs GM Joe Sakic said that contract talks with Rantanen’s camp likely wouldn’t resume until closer to the start of training camp, which gets underway next Friday.

“We haven’t had much dialogue since the Draft but camp’s coming around so there’ll be pressure on both sides,” Sakic said. “Looking forward to the opportunity to have Mikko back, and I’m sure he’ll be back here.”

Could the Avs and Rantanen go short-term?

Adrian Dater of Colorado Hockey Now: Think the Avalanche and Rantanen could do a short-term deal.

Avs GM Joe Sakic may not have too happy that the Arizona Coyotes signed Clayton Keller to an eight-year deal with a $7.15 million cap hit. That could help put Rantanen in the $9.5 million per range.

Sebastian Aho ($8.4 million per) and Leon Draisaitl ($8.5 million) per would be better comparables than Keller.