Rumor: Erik Karlsson to hit the open market

This would be a groundbreaking change to the NHL.

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Erik Karlsson of the Ottawa Senators recently spoke out about his contractual situation beyond the 2018-19 season, when he is set to become an unrestricted free agent.

Typically, teams will do everything in their power to lock down their own superstar players - but sometimes these players will want to move on to a new city to gain a new opportunity - or they'll chase down the biggest contract.

In the case of Erik Karlsson, it may very well be the financial aspect of his next contract that leaves Ottawa in the dust.

“When I go to market, I’m going to get what I’m worth, and it’s going to be no less, no matter where I’m going,” Karlsson told the Ottawa Sun on Thursday.

What he's worth is more than P.K. Subban's $9 million contract - he'll likely command anywhere between $10 and $12 million in free agency. Ottawa is a budget team - and with Mark Stone also due for a massive pay day at the conclusion of this season, they will be in tough to pay Karlsson what he wants.

There are many teams out there with more money, space, and budget to offer Karlsson a max deal, and if he's true to his word, that he won't take a hometown discount, he is all but gone from Ottawa after next season.