Sunday NHL Rumor Roundup – November 20, 2016
Latest on Dougie Hamilton, Evander Kane, Matt Duchene, Anthony Duclair and more in your Sunday NHL rumor roundup.
THE BOSTON GLOBE: Fluto Shinzawa believes the struggling Calgary Flames will be desperate to make a move after losing left wing Johnny Gaudreau to a broken finger. He considers defenseman Dougie Hamilton one of their prime trade chips, but speculates the Flames could be selling low if they move him now, noting rival GMs could try to rip them off. Shinzawa claims other teams still see potential in Hamilton, provided “he receives the proper coaching” like he had with the Boston Bruins.
EDMONTON JOURNAL: Jim Matheson recently cited Hamilton’s inconsistent play and his $5.8 million annual salary-cap hit. If Hamilton can’t put up the 50-60 points needed to offset his lukewarm defensive play, “that’s why they’re looking at trading him.”
SPECTOR’S NOTE: Hamilton’s contract is the biggest sticking point. That’s not an easy cap hit to move at this time of year, especially with a high number of clubs carrying less than $5 million in cap space this season. I don’t doubt there are teams willing to take a chance on improving his performance, but it’ll be difficult to make the dollars fit. And at this point, the Flames need offense, so they won’t want this to be solely a salary dump.
SPORTSNET: Elliotte Friedman reports the Buffalo Sabres and Vancouver Canucks engaged in trade talks regarding Sabres winger Evander Kane, but they’ve since died down. Word is the Canucks don’t want to pay the Sabres’ high asking price.
THE BUFFALO NEWS: Mike Harrington reports the Sabres haven’t been actively shopping Kane, who’s been the subject of frequent speculation linking him to the Canucks. However, Sabres GM Tim Murray is always listening and the two clubs have frequently talked. Harrington believes the Canucks are unlikely to part with defensemen such as Chris Tanev, Ben Hutton or Luca Sbisa.
THE PROVINCE: Jason Botchford believes the Kane trade story will be revisited. He noted Canucks GM Jim Benning acknowledged if he was to make a move, “we’d have to use some of our depth on the blueline to add a forward.” Botchford doubts Benning will part with Tanev and doesn’t expect Alex Edler to waive his no-movement clause. “That leaves a group of young players, including (Nikita) Tryamkin, (Troy)Stecher, Hutton and (Erik) Gubranson to go along with Sbisa.
SPECTOR’S NOTE: By the sound of things, talks between the two are done for the time being. Maybe they’ll revisit them at a later date, but the Canucks appear unwilling to pay too much for Kane.
EDMONTON JOURNAL: Matheson also reports the Dallas Stars may want to acquire Tampa Bay Lightning goalie Ben Bishop. However, he cites an NHL scout saying he doubts anyone will take expensive goalies Kari Lehtonen or Antti Niemi off their hands.
SPECTOR’S NOTE: The Lightning have given no indication they want to move Bishop this season. GM Steve Yzerman appears content to keep his goalie tandem of Bishop and Andrei Vasilevskiy intact, even at the risk of losing Bishop for nothing to free agency next summer.
He also notes Colorado Avalanche center Matt Duchene resurfaced in the rumor mill. Noting the New York Islanders need someone to playing alongside John Tavares, he suggests they offer up defenseman Travis Hamonic and either a forward off their roster (Ryan Strome) or a prospect (Michael Dal Colle) to the Avs for Duchene.
SPECTOR’S NOTE: Recent word out of New York (Newsday’s Arthur Staple) suggests a deal for Duchene by the Isles is a long shot. Islanders GM Garth Snow could be reluctant to give up Hamonic, his club’s best all-around defenseman.
Matheson also notes the ongoing “Evander Kane to Vancouver” speculation. “But the Canucks won’t part with Chris Tanev or any of their kid D, like Troy Stecher or Olli Juolevi. What is the market for Kane now, anyway? Not that high.”
SPORTSNET: Nick Kypreos reports he’s hearing Arizona Coyotes winger Anthony Duclair could be had for the right price. However, the Coyotes would ask ” a pretty penny” for Duclair.
SPECTOR’S NOTE: While Max Domi’s largely avoided the sophomore slump, Duclair’s really struggled, netting only three points in 17 games. While Coyotes GM John Chayka could listen to offers, I don’t see him keen to push Duclair out the door. He’s only 21 and it could be a big mistake to give up on him so soon.