NHL Rumor Mill – August 25, 2016

by | Aug 25, 2016 | Rumors | 60 comments

Could Buffalo Sabres winger Tyler Ennis become a trade candidate this season?

Could Buffalo Sabres winger Tyler Ennis become a trade candidate this season?

 Latest on Buffalo Sabres winger Tyler Ennis, unrestricted free agent defenseman Eric Gryba and the Ottawa Senators in your NHL rumor mill. 

EDMONTON JOURNAL: Jim Matheson reports Buffalo Sabres winger and Edmonton native Tyler Ennis hopes to put his concussion-shortened 2015-16 campaign behind him. Matheson notes Ennis’ name came up in trade speculation at this year’s NHL Draft because of his talent level and the Sabres pursuit of a defenseman. His injury history, however, was a red flag to other clubs.

Ennis acknowledged his name came up at the draft, claiming it’s the first time he’s heard trade talk. He pointed out he lacks a no-trade clause, but hopes remain part of the Sabres future. Matheson speculates Ennis could play on their second line this coming season.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: When healthy, Ennis is a very effective top-six forward, with three seasons of over 20 goals and 40-plus points. If his recent concussion injuries are in the past, he should regain his offensive form. However, that doesn’t ensure he won’t be traded in the upcoming season.

The Sabres were linked to Anaheim Ducks defenseman Cam Fowler in this summer’s rumor mill, and the Ducks need scoring depth at left wing. If Ennis has a good performance in 2016-17, perhaps there’s a fit there. Then again, the Ducks could balk at his $4.6 million cap hit through 2018-19. 

EDMONTON SUN:  Jim Matheson also reported former Oiler and current unrestricted free agent defenseman Eric Gryba continues to search for an NHL contract. Matheson claims three teams have offered Gryba training camp tryouts, but his first choice is to return to the Oilers. 

OTTAWA SUN: Bruce Garrioch reported via Twitter the Senators could sign another defenseman. “Pierre Dorion (Senators GM) told me last week may also invite a guy on a PTO.”

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Gryba spent parts of three seasons with the Senators before being acquired last summer by the Oilers. Maybe the Senators are one of those three clubs offering him a PTO.   


  1. Gryba would just be yet another “depth” 5/6 D in Ottawa, although more than a notch higher than Kostka. I’d rather see someone like Quincey fill that role for a year while Chabot and Andreas Englund continue to develop.

    • Agreed George. I would like to see them add Quincey on say a 2 year deal at in or around 2 mil, less if possible & even Seidenberg for 1 year if he can be had at 1 to 1.5 as a #6 who plays around 60 to 65 games allowing for Wideman & possible Chabot to see some games outside of playing when other Dman are injured.

      Both are lefties but it fits with what Ottawa already has. I think with 2 acquisitions like that to flush out the 3rd pairing Ottawa is a playoff team in the East.

      If Ottawa tries to stop gap with another depth Dman like Kostka or Borowiecki then I don’t think Ottawa’s top 4 is enough to make the playoffs with what they already have. Wideman has potential as an offensive Dman but needs sheltered minutes & limited appearances until he polishes up his defensive game & learns the NHL game. He has promise.

      Have you softened on Chabot being ready to play in the NHL next season?

      • I like the veteran 1 year deals; Toronto played this format almost perfectly, Parenteau being the exception. I was surprised they din’t flip him for something, & if out of the playoff picture come the trade deadline you flip say a player like Seidenberg for what ever you can get & even if in the playoff picture by then Wideman or Chabot maybe ready for more responsibility as 5 or 6 Dman or there is a surprise & a player like say Englund is ready to step up.

      • Not at all. Just that we won’t know what his mind-set is until the rookie tournament/camp. He was read the riot act after a so-so showing at the development camp so we will just have to see how he responds. If he doesn’t show well it’s back to the Q (unless they keep him around for the 9-game “trial”)

      • Can’t see Chabot being in the line up for the Sens next year. Maybe 9 games then back to Junior and the World Juniors.

      • Indeed, Kostka is in the unfortunate position of having the skills to play at an NHL level, but not the skills to play in the top four which his playmaking, offense-oriented style is suited for. He’s one of those AHL All Star for life-type of deals that isn’t suited to play a depth role in the NHL.

  2. Tyler Ennis is 5′ 9″ 160 lbs soaking wet and last year began to shown the signs of constant hammering by bigger players.

    • George you are 100% right especially when a Mac truck named Ovi buries you…I also don’t see him as a top 6 LW’er because he needs to carry the puck to be effective and to do that he has to play center, with the top 2 centers being O’Reilly and Eichel that isn’t happening. He may have to play LW with Eichel if GMTM can’t acquire a better option but I can’t see it working out long term. I’m not saying he can’t play but he is better suited to 3rd line center IMO. Not many teams have a 3rd line center that is a 20 goal scorer.

      • Not many have a 3rd line C that costs $4.6 mil off the cap either.

    • Ennis would be a terrible fit in Anaheim. Fowler makes 4 flat so he already makes more than cam. Plus he’s injury ravaged and likely won’t play more than 50 games this year (my prediction) his offensive numbers just aren’t going to fill the void Anaheim needs unless he stays healthy all year and has the best season of his career. As a ducks fan Id be livid if they gave fowler for him. They’d need ennis and a high pick for it to be fair. I’m totally opposed to Anaheim trading fowler but if he has to be dealt, girgensons would be better fit. Despite rfa status, could be cheaper than 4 mill a year and has upside given the right lineup spot and possible change of scenery.

  3. There are many effective small players in the league today, but no doubt a few big hits on smaller guys will
    take their toll. That’s why I wonder how guys like Marner will do with the Leafs. I like the rebuild they are doing but think some of the prospects lack size. Ennis would probably be effective on a line with guys like Getzlaf and Perry. Fowler certainly seems destined to be traded and I wondered till recently why his name was on the trade block before realizing how deep the Ducks are on D.

    • The contract length and term for Ennis might dissuade the Ducks from making that trade I guess as Lyle stated.

    • when you are 5’9″/5′ 10″ and run into a 6′ 6″ opponent your head is going to take a hit. How the NHL can continue to call some of these “head shots” is beyond me (like Gryba in that playoff against the Habs a couple of years back). How do they avid hitting the head? The alternative is to do nothing and try to “stick check” them, thereby letting them dangle.

  4. Ennis at 5’9″, 169 lbs, coming off a serious concussion costing him almost the entire 2015-16 season, with a 4.6 mil cap hit for 3 more years, he isn’t an appealing trade candidate for Murray; Anaheim, in trade for Fowler.

    If Murray were to move Fowler, a big if, to Buffalo, I assume Murray will want a young affordable LW & picks. Buffalo has the picks but the prospect kitty is getting pretty bare. All Buffalo’s best prospects; Eichel, Reinhart, Ristolainen & McCabe are playing in the NHL, so other than this past seasons drafted players & Guhle & Fasching who aren’t aren’t A class prospects I don’t see a fit. I don’t see Buffalo giving up a Reinhart, so unless there is a 1st round pick included & a very good affordable player at forward, I can’t see the fit with expansion looming.

    With the acquisition of Kulikov I don’t think Buffalo’s D needs anything till possible following the expansion draft. Kulikov is a UFA following next season.

    Kulikov, Ristolainen.
    McCabe, Bogosian.
    Georges, Franson.
    Falk, Nelson.

    That’s a pretty solid D. Georges & Mccabe may flip flop periodically as McCabe may not be fully ready for a top 4 role; was 4th in TOI/GP at D last season, but he’s very close. He played very well last season as a rookie. Georges probably edges him out in TOI/GP as he plays on the #1 PK unit but by pairings this seems like more likely pairings.

  5. Christian Ehrhoff is a possibility for a PTO for the Sens, but I think the Sens, as well as other teams, may be waiting for the WC in Sept to gauge him, since he had so many healthy scratches late last season.

  6. You may be forced to include McCabe with Ennis to soften the risk to land a Fowler.

    • Causes a protection problem for Anaheim. McCabe would seem like the obvious player to return if not confronted with an expansion draft. Even with out Fowler Anaheim is already looking to have to expose Despres unless they opt for the 8 skater option, nor do I see Ennis at 4.6 per for 3 years an option.

      If not for the expansion draft a McCabe & a 1st makes sense but Anaheim would have to expose Mccabe & that’s not happening he would get snapped up in a second.

      The other dynamic is that a 2nd expansion draft could happen with in the next 2 years for Quebec. I think teams will be far more cognoscente this time with another potential expansion draft coming than many were over the last 2 years.

  7. Bill Waters on a Winnipeg Radio show yesterday, that he believes Trouba wants out of Winnipeg. We all know Trouba basically has no rights and can only voice his desire to leave. If true, what do the jets do? My gut says there is a trade coming and Trouba will be in Boston and Krug + prospect will be in Winnipeg. If Traded Trouba will be going east, he also would be a very nice addition in Buffalo.

    • No thank you, I prefer Krug. Especially considering he’s signed at 5.25 for 4 more years. If healthy next season; at least 75 games, Krug makes the top 10 Dman in both scoring & goals next season with Boston. His defensive game is evolving & he’s part of the new breed of NHL Dman that can do everything but punish people physicly.

      • Completely agree with Striker. Krug is better than Trouba and Trouba seems to be significantly over-valuing himself. He shouldn’t get any more than Ceci just got on his 2-year bridge deal.

        As an aside, I don’t understand why everyone undervalues Krug so much. He is a great offensive defenseman, is quite competent defensively and has a good contract. It is very similar to how everyone says Karlsson can’t play defense when his corsi numbers strongly suggest otherwise. It still bugs me how Doughty won the lifetime achievement award Norris trophy when Karlsson was by far the best defenseman in the league last year.

      • Striker not that i don’t like Krug, i do but i see Trouba more as a Brent Seabrook type dman. Remember Krug is 25, Trouba is 22 so where will be Trouba be in 3 years of development and he already has a sound round game, also 6 goals last year but logged the most minutes in wpg on the penalty kill.

      • Trouba may be a Seabrook in a few years, but he doesn’t deserve that type of deal yet. A 2-3 year bridge deal leaving him an RFA at the end of the contract is what Winnipeg should rightfully push for. Trouba can cash in on the next contract if he is as good as he thinks he is now.

    • Don’t see Cheveldayoff being interested in a 5’9 Torey Krug over a 6’3 Jacob Trouba. Granted that Cheveldayoff needs a LHD but i seriously doubt that Krug would be the one he seeks and besides. For Sweeney to sign Trouba will be far more then what he’s currently paying Krug i will be shocked if he signs for any thing less then $6 million. Krug would be a downgrade for Winnipeg compared to Trouba just don’t see it. And if a 3 way needs to be done i see Trouba coming home to Detroit before he goes to Boston he grew up hating both Boston and Toronto as a kid don’t see him landing in either one of those 2 cities.

      • I’m glad you are the GM of my team if you think Trouba is already worth $6M/year. He clearly isn’t and, as I said above, his numbers are similar to Ceci and Ceci got a 2-year, $2.8M/year bridge deal.

        How does size make Trouba more valuable than Krug? By that argument, you would rather have Trouba than Karlsson. I’ve seen Krug play a lot and from what I’ve seen of Trouba, Krug is an upgrade, not a downgrade. Krug is quite sound positionally and people are making too much out of Krug’s lack of size. If Krug is such a liability defensively, how come he is +40 the last three years on a middling team?

      • *aren’t the GM of my team* 🙂

      • Maybe he doesn’t get $6 million the D market is pretty well set around $5 million to $5.5 million and he will get something around those numbers long term. And honestly i like Krug he’s actually from my hometown of Livonia, Michigan. He would be solid for Winnipeg that’s the only way Trouba is going to Boston if Krug goes to Winnipeg. Cheveldayoff isn’t trading Trouba unless a good young offensive D-man like Krug is coming back just don’t see it happening. Other then Krug Boston really doesn’t have the pieces to net Trouba and that’s the bottom line. Leaving Winnipeg for Boston isn’t much better for Trouba a team that he grew up to hate as a child don’t see him going there any ways.

      • Give him a bridge deal.

      • Gary: So you think Trouba is as good as Reilly or, even better, Ekman-Larsson? In no way should he be getting $5M/year on a 6 year deal yet. I highly doubt it would, but that type of term could be a Cowen-esque disaster in a few years if Trouba stagnates or regresses from what he is today.

  8. Bolland and Lawson Crouse to Arizona for second and third pick next year

    Seems like an odd trade unless Florida was trying to dump Bolland’s salary

    • I thought Bolland was a Stanley Cup hero? Lol

      • Lol, funny to laugh but Nonis did bid for Bolland similar to the deal he ultimately got so as Leafs fans we could easily be the ones on the wrong end of the Bolland jokes!

    • wow. just shows what a bad contract will do to your team. I’ve seen Lawson play a couple of games in Kingston and this guy is pretty good. I was sure he was going to be a top ten pick too. This is another fantastic deal for Arizona. Datsyuk comes off the books after this year and Bolland + Mike SMith in 2019, just in time to sign everyone.
      What a pool of talent the coyotes are building here, crazy how much potential there is

      • You around this area Tazi?

      • used to live there but moved to Ottawa sometime ago. Family still there so I go back pretty often

    • Again the untradable contract has been moved. Good job Florida.
      High price to pay for Crouse. What is Arizone going to do with Bolland ? Hope he goes LTIR ? Thats a lot of money to spend on a bottom 6 player.

    • Can’t see florida giving up on Crouse this early for a package of lower draft picks.

      • yeah… never will happen…

      • It already has happened. Whats REALLY shocking is that Florida gave up on Dave Bolland (AKA this generations Gretzky)

    • So I guess Arizona bought out Vermette so they could upgrade to Bolland? 😉

      I bet they’ll keep Crouse in junior one more year given it will lessen the second round pick to a third and they are likely bringing up Strome and Dvorak already.

      Arizona is going to be a very good team in the next couple years. Other than Bolland and possibly Smith, all of their bad contracts are ending within 2 years, leaving plenty of cap space to resign their young stars.

    • Could be like Forsberg going to Nashville from Washington before they even took a look at him. Very similar story. Arizona just keeps piling up the talent.

  9. Arizona is building a very impressive stable of young players.

    • Like the Oilers did.

      • The Oilers didnt have a stud Dman like OEL. Arizona has depth in D too with a few already stepping up and performing at the NHL level like Mike Stone and Connor Murphy. Gologoski was a great signing too.

      • The difference with Arizona is Mike Smith, Ekman-Larsson, and Goligoski. A solid goalie and defence is something the Oilers didn’t have when they were building their young stable of players.

      • Not like the oilers. Oilers got a bunch of number one picks. Arizona have drafted very well over the last few years. Example Conner Garlund taken in the 5th round lead the QMJHL In points the last 2 seasons in a row by a sizable margin. Maybe he’ll never play an NHL game who knows but they got a lot of special talent in the system.

  10. Arizona takes Bolland, basically dead cap space, in exchange for a discount on a good prospect (solid, but not elite ceiling) in Crouse. It’s a smart move for the Coyotes – man do they have a stacked team coming up. Wow

    • If he doesn’t play its a very good deal !

      • When Bolland does play, he’s still dead cap space.

      • I believe Yankee is referring to LTIR

      • …and not Elite like scoring elite but I’d say as a complete 3 zone type player I wouldn’t question Crouse ceiling. This guy is the type of player you have on the ice in the final seconds if you’re down one or up by one.

      • Ty Sthicky. Dan’s response is funny though.

  11. This from a recent wire:
    “The Colorado Avalanche have hired Jared Bednar to be their next head coach. He replaces Patrick Roy, who re-signed earlier this month. “After profiling the type of coach I wanted for our team and going through an interview process with several good candidates, I believe that Jared Bednar is the best person to lead this team behind the bench,” said Avalanche Executive Vice President/General Manager Joe Sakic. “Jared’s track record of success as a head coach in the American Hockey League speaks for itself and he is considered to be one of the top up-and-coming coaches in our business.” Bednar won the Calder Cup with the Lake Erie Monsters (Columbus’ AHL affiliate) in 2016. The 44-year-old has 14 years of professional coaching experience in the ECHL and AHL.”

    Be interesting to see if this works in Colorado. Promoting AHL coaches doesn’t always work, as Ottawa has found out repeatedly.

    • Nice to see a new guy get a shot instead of the same old. You’re right it doesnt always work.

  12. Pirri to NYR’s. 1 year 1.1 million deal.

    • Ya just saw that. Not a bad pick up.

    • Nice pick up there, honestly never understood why people were going nuts about Vesey and just ignoring this guy who I think will put up better numbers at a third the price.

      • A little odd? See my comment below. To

  13. Crouse is looking at his third World Junior. Made the team with McJesus as a 97 born. Not that common for team Canada. A big body….. Bolland can continue to work on his golf game year round…… Florida must think they can win soon if dollars are that important… Rangers forward group is getting crowded. Wonder how Vesey likes the Pirri signing ?

    • Pirri is a center, Vesey is a LW. It doesn’t have any impact on Vesey at all. I do find the signing of Pirri a little odd. 3-4 players will have to clear waivers now. I’m thinking Gerbe, Cledening, Jooris. I’m also guessing Hayes will eventually be moved back to wing. And The Lapierre experiment is over before it started. They will have to make room for Skjei and eventually Lindberg .

  14. nice trade by Ari for Lawson Crouse , kid is big strong can skate and score goals….