NHL Rumor Mill – November 22, 2016

by | Nov 22, 2016 | Rumors | 49 comments

The Evander Kane trade speculation continues to smolder.

The Evander Kane trade speculation continues to smolder.

Updates on Evander Kane and Jacob Trouba, plus the latest on the Chicago Blackhawks in your NHL rumor mill.

THE BUFFALO NEWS: Mike Harrington reports Sabres left wing Evander Kane is aware of the trade rumors swirling about him, but he claims his focus is on scoring goals. The 25-year-old also insists he’s very happy playing in Buffalo. Harrington said the Sabres aren’t shopping Kane but were “certainly listening” when the Vancouver Canucks called, especially in the aftermath of an incident involving Kane at a Buffalo-area bar in June.

The Canucks, seeking scoring depth, were believed interested in the Vancouver-born Kane. Harrington notes the Sabres need blueline help and were “likely interested in 23-year-old Ben Hutton or former RIT standout Chris Tanev.”

He also claims the Sabres were in heavy trade talks over the weekend, “whether on Kane or perhaps that elusive addition to their defense.” Harrington also noted Canucks assistant GM John Weisbrod took in a recent game between the Sabres and Tampa Bay Lightning, though he could’ve been headed to the Canucks farm team in Utica to check out prospect Jake Virtanen. 

FANRAG:  NHL analyst Bob McKenzie told TSN 1050 he still expects the Sabres to trade Kane this season. He believes there are teams besides the Canucks with interest in the embattled winger, though he cautions there’s no guarantee a deal will be consummated. McKenzie feels the Sabres are considering their options. 

SPECTOR’S NOTE: While Sabres GM Tim Murray won’t publicly admit it, I believe he’s trying hard to find someone to take Kane off his hands. However, he’s not dealing from a position of strength. Along with Kane’s off-ice baggage, he’s struggling to score and carries a $5.25 million annual cap hit through 2017-18. Sure, the Canucks are desperate to add a scorer, but it appears they’re not so desperate as to part with a quality defenseman to get him. If Kane’s performance improves, perhaps that improves his trade value, but I doubt Murray will get much in return. 

FANRAG:  McKenzie told TSN 690 that he doesn’t expect the Winnipeg Jets have plans to trade recently re-signed defenseman Jacob Trouba. “I don’t think it was one of those situations where Winnipeg was saying, ‘Okay, let’s get this guy signed. Let’s put a little distance between this, and then on our own time table here we’ll make a move,” said McKenzie. He goes on to suggest that this doesn’t mean Trouba will spend the rest of his career with the Jets. If they eventually trade the young defenseman, McKenzie believes they’ll want to ensure they still have a foundational piece on their blueline.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Following the Trouba signing earlier this month, there was some internet chatter suggesting this would be a “sign-and-trade” move, anticipating the blueliner would be dealt within weeks. At some point, the Jets and Trouba could part ways via trade. Maybe it happens as early as next summer. I don’t expect he’ll be shopped this season. 

TSN.CA: Pierre LeBrun doubts the Chicago Blackhawks will be big dealers by the March 1 trade deadline. The Blackhawks have 10 picks in the 2017 NHL Draft, which will be held in Chicago. General manager Stan Bowman is reluctant to move those picks. The Blackhawks also have six first-year players on their roster this season, such as Nick Schmaltz, Ryan Hartman,Tyler Motte and Vincent Hinostroza. They could help provide the Blackhawks with a late-season boost. 

SPECTOR’S NOTE: LeBrun acknowledges a major injury to a key player or a prolonged slump could change things by the deadline. Given how well the ‘Hawks are playing with those youngsters thus far, they won’t have any need to make a major deadline deal if their solid performances carry through this season. 



  1. “[Kane] claims his focus is on scoring goals.”

    If that were true, Evander, you wouldn’t be in the discount bin right now, about to be traded from a team that tried and failed on your redemption.

  2. Kane’s focus has always been on ‘The Life’ rather than the game and he’s made that abundantly clear through all of his misguided media and social media efforts.

  3. Well it’s after the GM meetings and the US thanksgiving almost here, seems to me if there was ever a time for a move like Kane to happen it would be around now.

    • Only if Murray will take a “bag of pucks” in return. As mentioned above he hasn’t been scoring. So to take a risk on a guy with baggage like that he better be putting the puck in the net.
      He will go for a reduced rate due to his off ice history, and if he isn’t scoring… what is he worth?
      Murray has to wait and hope he starts to play well.

      • I’m not sure about of a bag of pucks I could see a couple of teams who maybe desperate enough to give up something for Kane…I believe there are a couple to a few places with some guys on hot seats that won’t be around if it doesn’t work out any way so there is nothing really to lose. That and I think really Murray probably realizes he isn’t getting a kings ransom back for Kane and will be just glad to move on.

      • Ya, I suppose a team like Vancouver appears desperate, but not enough to give a key asset it seems.
        It’s the 5.25 cap hit that would worry me for this year and next. Which kind of rules out many contenders who think they need a few more goals to contend.
        Young rebuilding teams have no reason to bring him in as he is risky to have around the young guys.
        Say Murray won’t retain salary, what would you give up?
        That’s a lot of money for a potential headache.
        Personally I would need to send bad $$ back, or a 2nd round pick for a team with cap space.

      • It’s teams that might be desperate for some scoring hoping to turn things around while there is still some time that I see possibly interested not contenders really Islanders Canucks Flames possibly NJ or the Preds just kinda off the top of my head (not saying all would be interested) ya salary could be an issue but anyone of those teams could probably find a contract or 2 to send back the other way.

      • Shticky, I think the desperation trade is always a good bet with NHL GM’s who are on the hot seat, but it was already made once on Kane and a year later the team on the receiving end wants out!

      • Same thing happened to kassian and he is playing his role great in edm, people change dan Kane has all the tools to be a solid power forward

      • It’s possible he could change in the future, BigBruin, but he’s played 434 NHL games and it gets increasingly hard to believe he will.

        He reminds me a lot of Lupul. All the talent in the world, but without the effort to stay in shape and avoid injuries and consistently improve.

        Career might end the same way with the injuries piling up and the performance spiraling.

      • Could happen but someone will take a chance on him

      • People can change, and Kassian went to rehab and took it seriously. We have all heard the term about how addicts need to hit rock bottom first. Not sure if that is true or not, but Kassian needed a contract and was in jeopardy of being out of the league.
        I don’t know Kane and have no idea what he is really all about, but when there is that much smoke there is fire and his Wpg team mates seemed happy he left. That is telling.
        From a strictly hockey asset perspective he is risky for that reason and expensive.
        Like Schticky’s idea about the Islanders. They need help up front and Snow has to be feeling some heat.

      • Dan39 – just look at Radulov. Few had a worse reputation his last go-round in Nashville. The Habs took a chance and he’s doing just fine with them.

      • I see him going to more of a contender, the ducks have some good leaders and need help up front

      • Yes, yes, George, BigBruin, possible, but I’m thinking more Semin than Radulov years down the road. Even Radulov I have my doubts can maintain his current focus/effort level for the duration of the season. We’ll see

      • The same can be said about zaitsev and nylander both have had stories of them not being ” focused” but you think they will be just fine right?

  4. I think Kelly Hrudey assessment of Kane was spot on. Evander has become a predictable player, skating down the side and letting a high slap shot off. Kane has great speed and is effective on the penalty kill. But he is going to have to evolve his game in the offensive zone; if he can, to become more productive.

  5. Eichel has yet to play a game. O’Reilly; 6 games & counting, has missed almost every game Kane’s played; 8, but 1 & he tried playing hurt in that game & wasn’t very effective. He’s tried coming back twice & playing unsuccessfully, O’Reilly that is.

    Kane is barely seeing 2nd line PP time & just returned from getting injured in game 1 of the season missing 4 weeks plus a day with broken ribs. I don’t know if you have broken your ribs but 4 weeks isn’t making you pain free.

    Until he has someone to play with other than Larsson & a revolving door of RW wingers primarily Gionta until recently; Okposo, I’ll reserve judgement until he gets regular ice time with O’Reilly & or Eichel.

    I don’t see Kane being moved any time soon for a range of reasons not the least of which is everyone low balling Buffalo.

  6. I see Trouba being traded this summer most likely before the expansion draft but possibly following. The market for Dman is always strong, just not enough to go around & numerous teams will be a in a position to bid especially for a Dman with these qualities & abilities.

    If not this summer then certainly before he reaches arbitration in the summer of 2018. Winnipeg can’t afford all the talent they have stock piled & will need big contracts down the road.

    • Agree I really thought it was a sign and trade due to the low salary.
      Do you think the play of Carlo kept Boston from making a deal?

  7. After last night less than a week since we discussed NJ being 4th in the east; 5 days, NJ now sits 8th in the East 3 points ahead of Carolina & Buffalo at 13 & 14th. Carolina has a game in hand. NJ is now 2 points out of 12th. 1 win. They are actually tied with Ottawa 9th & Florida 10th but hold the tie breaker.

    It’s not that Oct & Nov are meaningless George it just takes those 2 months for things to settle down & balance out the games played & level of competition. We still have a significant discrepancies. Columbus, Carolina & NYI having played 17 games & Winnipeg & Calgary 21. That’s almost 25% more games played. Nor has the level of competition & travel fully balanced out yet. It is with each passing day.

    By the time the last team in the league has played it’s 25th game, almost a 1/3rd of the regular season, 80% of playoff teams will be set for the season. Their will be 1 or 2 teams that go on great runs to bump teams out but the #’s just play out that way for some reason.

    Parity is alive & well in the NHL with a few minor exceptions but the difference between making the playoffs & not is a very fine line. Again I have 6 points separating 7th & 12th in the west & 8 from 7th through 14th in the east when the regular season ends.

    Boy is the condensed schedule causing a ton of injuries & altering the landscape. I can’t remember so many players being injured this early into the season. Players are dropping like fly’s.

  8. I think bishop will be dealt, vasy has looked very good this yr, tb might want to add someone to help with the loss of stamkos. Was able to watch hawks/oilers game last night best game Ive seen the oilers play in a long time!

    • May not happen until just after the Stanley Cups conclude.

      Yes these aren’t your old Edmonton Oilers. The game wasn’t overly physical & Chicago looked gassed from playing it’s 3rd game in 4 nights. They looked gassed in Vancouver Saturday night as well. At least until Vancouver went into it’s defensive shell in the 3rd period.

      • Tb will get more during the season compared to the off season when every team knows tb can’t keep him. The hawks looked tired because the oilers just outplayed them in every facet of the game they played great!

      • Bishop has a $6mill cap hit and is UFA at the end of the season what really could Tampa expect?

      • Philly and Dallas would give a good return at this point of the season

      • No idea, the market for goalies with expansion on the horizon is blurry. UFA or not. Depends on when & if he’s traded.

        TB being a cup contender isn’t well served like Pittsburgh to address before the playoffs. That said it’s all about what is being offered.

        I would have to agree that the value for Bishop drops if he moves pre expansion but post playoffs but I could still see 2 or 3 teams cough up fairly decent value to trade & sign Bishop pre expansion.

  9. I like the fact Tim Murray is not selling Kane for the proverbial ” bag of pucks. ”
    Buffalo apparently wants a dman back in return, ( Who doesn’t ) and who needs help up front?
    Calgary, if the rumors are true about Hamilton maybe there is a deal to be done here. Kane, McCabe and the Capitals 3rd round pick for Hamilton and a mid level prospect such as Mangiapane. Maybe add in the useless 5th or 6th round pick, just so Calgary can keep stock piling bodies.
    Nice thing is TM does not need to rush on any deal.Someone will take Kane.

    • Wow, I never thought I’d see a trade proposal that involved Evander Kane and Dougie Hamilton in the same paragraph 🙂 If the Canucks aren’t willing to give up Hutton for Kane and his issues/contract I really can’t see the Flames giving up Hamilton.

      • I agree it is far-fetched but if the flames really are looking to unload Hamilton you never know what will happen.

  10. Well, I wouldn’t call all 5th/6th round picks useless. Most, I agree, don’t pan out, but from 2005 to 2011 these are just some of the players taken in this rounds who have became anything ranging from very serviceable to outright stars at the NHL level. I’ve probably missed quite a few, and didn’t bother looking at 2012 up since the potentially good ones are still honing their chops in the minors/junior or Europe:

    5th Round Picks
    2005 – Darren Helm – det 132nd
    2007 – Jamie Benn – Dal 129th
    Jake Muzzin – Pit 141st
    2008 – Matt Calvert – Clb – 127th
    Mark Borowiecki – Ott – 139th
    Matt Martin – NYI – 148th
    2009 – Mike Hoffman – Ott – 130th
    2010 – John Klingberg – Dal – 131st
    Petr Mrazek – Det – 141st
    2011 – Andrew Shaw – Chi – 139th

    6th Round Picks
    2006 – Andrew McDonald – NYI – 160th
    Viktor Stahlberg – Tor – 161st
    M atthew Perreault – Wash – 177th
    Leo Komarov – Tor – 180th
    2007 – Patrick Maroon – Pha – 161st
    Carl Hagelin – NYR – 168th
    Nick Bonnino – SJ – 173rd
    Paul Byron – Buf – 179th
    2008 – Jared Spurgeon – NYI – 156th
    Cam Atkinson – Clb – 157th
    Tommy Wingels – SJ – 177th
    2009 – Anders Lee – NYI – 152nd
    2010 – Jesper Fast – NYR – 157th
    Mark Stone – Ott – 178th

    • Connor Brown – 6th round, 156th overall in 2012.

      13 points in 25 NHL games playing two way hockey.

      • Dan39 Connor brown won’t be more than a third liner at best he is so common in the nhl it’s like a spare part

      • Did a guy in a Leafs jersey kill your dog bbb? Jeez man for a team that has so many lazy, 3rd liners, common spare parts, bad D , players that are not focused, cheap shot artists and forwards that aren’t worth much and that’s just what you’ve said the past day or 2 lol they are 2 points out of 10th overall in the league lol what does that say about the rest of the league or your asessment of talent? You realize they are 1 of if not the youngest team in the NHL? I’m not sure they are quite as bad as you make them sound. lol

      • Oh shticky in your honest opinion do you think brown is more than a third liner? That’s just silly talk and btw they are 21st in the league and 5 points out of 30th! ?

      • Yep along with 20 other teams BBB, Do 20 other teams have as many of these problems as the Leafs? And what’s the other 15-19 teams excuse? they are not as young as the Leafs so are the other teams just more lazy and made up of 4th liners? I agree Dan doesn’t need to bring em up every day but seriously you talk about the Leafs more than most Leaf fans do.

      • Shticky I bring them up when you or dan overvalue every single player on the leafs! They were 30 th last yr and the way you 2 talk they’ve been competitive for decades? You guys sound exactly like oiler fans when they got a couple of high picks and we know how long that took

      • And as far the standings a whopping 20 games cmon man! You still didn’t answer if you think brown wil be more than a third liner

      • I haven’t mentioned them here in days and last I did I think I told Ray I don’t think they are a playoff team and I think JVR is worth more than a prospect how is that overvaluing anyone? Again bbb scroll thru the past few days and all you see is you talking about the Leafs, multiple times a day. lol Anyway I’m not trying to “hijack” a thread have a good night.

      • And you still didn’t answer the question lol

      • And you keep brining up the Leafs… but if you are so curious I think ya likely you could be right a third liner who could possibly move up if there is an injury would be his ceiling if things work out, I also think for a 5th or 6th round pick that’s a great find no matter what team you are, if you are getting guys that can play as a top 9 forward in the NHL you are doing something right. So what’s your issue with Connor Brown?

      • No issue dan just made him sound like he was an amazing pick I just said he was a third liner and you got all defensive again!

    • There you go. Sometimes they pan out. All the reason to include it and take the risk.I wouldn’t lose any sleep over trading the low pick, nice list George O.

      • Even a broken clock is right twice a day.

      • Do not ever count out Connor Brown. He’s spent his entire hockey life surpassing people’s expectations.
        By the way, some people are really having a problem with the Leaf’s improvement. Ain’t seen nothing yet.

  11. Anyone for Brent Burns at $8 x 8? Whistles

    • Good signing for both dmen aren’t easy to find! I’m sure you know that looking at the leafs weak d tho!

  12. -D.D + Hudon+3rd for hanzal + Vrbata
    -2nd rd pick (2017)+ Pateryn for Del Zotto (retain 1/2)
    -1st (2017)+ N Scherback +(2nd rd 2018 if habs resigh KS)For K Shattenkirk

    Radulov. Galchenyuk. Shaw
    Pacioretty. Pleckanec. Gallagher
    Byron. Hanzal. Vrbata

    Del zotto/Weber
    Ps: habs have 2x2nd rd picks 2017 & 2018 so would still have one in each year…

    • First deal..no. Yotes would never.
      Second? Maybe, thsts possible but still, I wouldn’t if I’m MB.
      Stl wants current assets, I’m sure. A pick and a prospect wouldn’t do it, or he would be a Bruin.