NHL Rumor Mill – December 10, 2016

by | Dec 10, 2016 | Rumors | 50 comments

Is Edmonton Oilers center Ryan Nugent-Hopkins a viable trade option for the Montreal Canadiens?

Is Edmonton Oilers center Ryan Nugent-Hopkins a viable trade option for the Montreal Canadiens?

Updates on the Colorado Avalanche, Montreal Canadiens, Toronto Maple Leafs and Ottawa Senators in your NHL rumor mill. 

MONTREAL GAZETTE: Pat Hickey reports there’s no urgency for Canadiens general manager Marc Bergevin to shop for a short-term replacement for sidelined centers Alex Galchenyuk and David Desharnais. That’s because they’re in good position in the standings. The situation is also different compared to last season, when Carey Price, P.K. Subban and Brendan Gallagher were among several notables sidelined for lengthy periods.

Hickey notes Edmonton Oilers center Ryan Nugent-Hopkins keeps surfacing in the rumor mill, but he’s expensive in terms of salary ($6 million per season) and the Oilers’ potential asking price. He also dismisses Arizona Coyotes center Martin Hanzal as an option, noting he’s never scored more than 16 goals in a season and only reached 40 points twice. 

SPECTOR’S NOTE: I agree with Hickey’s take on RNH and Hanzal. The former is far too expensive and the latter is often injured and won’t provide a significant offensive boost to the Habs. Perhaps Bergevin will find better options in the new year.

I’ve also heard Dallas Stars center Jason Spezza floated by some observers as an option, but he’s aging (33), past his prime, carrying any expensive cap hit ($7.5 million) and has a no-movement clause with a modified no-trade clause. He won’t be suiting up for the Habs anytime soon. 

EDMONTON JOURNAL: Jim Matheson believes the Colorado Avalanche “have a crushing need for two or three defensemen”, especially after losing Erik Johnson to a broken leg. While he believes they could easily land a blueliner by shopping left wing Gabe Landeskog or center Matt Duchene, Matheson observers the Avs aren’t very deep at forward either. 

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Avs GM Joe Sakic recently said he’d remain patient with his club. If he does decide to move out a core player like Landeskog or Duchene for a defenseman, that deal likely happens in the offseason when there are better options available and more teams willing to deal. 

TORONTO STAR: Kevin McGran reports the latest 2-4-2 funk of the Toronto Maple Leafs isn’t prompting GM Lou Lamoriello to make trades to bolster the roster. “Right now, we’re building,” he said. “Determining who the players are that will be part of the future, and who are buying into what it takes to have the success you want to have.”

SPECTOR’S NOTE: In other words, Lamoriello won’t trade away his club’s promising youth for a quick fix. He did trade Peter Holland yesterday to the Arizona Coyotes for a conditional pick in 2018, but that move was made simply to ship out a little-used player who no longer fit into their plans. 

OTTAWA SUN: Ken Warren reports the return from injury of winger Bobby Ryan takes some pressure off Senators GM Pierre Dorion to make a deal to bolster his forward lines. “I’m still making calls, but with Bobby back, there might not be as much need immediately,” he said. 


  1. Lou and co not feeling pressure and staying the course – no surprise there. Should be in a good lottery position come June, but not much to move at the TDL this year.

    • #TorontoTanking #NolanPatrick

      • Or the Swiss kid Nico Hurshier. I think that`s how his name is spelled.

      • Liligren, not sure if he’s going to slide. Big, right shot D.

      • And as for the point of draft position and a guy who likes to kinda and seem to enjoy numbers Dan I’m not so sure about how great their draft position ends up if you, extrapolate it out they are on pace for around 86 points roughly which would put them at about 18th last year a 17 point improvement and 12 draft positions depending on the lottery….granted they could blow everything up towards the deadline but I’m not sure it’s benificial to promote or tolerate losing with a young team. Tough to say I don’t think the plan changes either way.

    • I think it could be that by the trade deadline it may not be so much rentals (tho they will be moved) but maybe you see one or 2 vets of Komarov JVR or Bozak moved all relatively cheap contract only a year left easy enough for teams to find room for next year if another team wanted to start some expansion house cleaning or wanted to make a big move to run for a cup. Plus with some space on terms of contract numbers they maybe able to take on 1 or 2 for a pick similar to a rental deal….I expect there will still be a fair amount of movement by the Leafs come the deadline.

      • I can see Bozak staying these days, his work on face offs and fitting in so well with Marner. To me Bozak is more a off season move. JVR and Komarov will go at the deadline. Teams will have little problems fitting them in cap wise and both are known quantities.

      • Good point, Yogi. Think all of these are more likely in the offseason. Having said that, some teams are all in and may get desperate. Look at the Habs now – no C depth and a short window with Weber and imagine we were at the deadline. I could see Bozak being moved in a situation like that. There will be others.

  2. Ryan might be back – but there had better be some better chemistry between him and Brassard if he’s to make any offensive difference. And why isn’t Zach Smith back up on the top 2 lines where he had such great success last season? Dzingel may be the “future” up there in a season or two – but right now they need some consistency that Dzingel just isn’t giving them, whereas Smith did last season.

  3. Think Spezza’s years in Ottawa and seeing these crazy Canadian markets not just (Ottawa) on a daily basis and his relief at being moved to a place like Dallas make it a pretty safe bet he won’t be waiving to play in Montreal anytime soon.

  4. If the Canadiens start dropping in the standings then I’m sure Marc Bergevin’s tune will be changing.

    I also agree that the asking price for RNH would prove to be too expensive during the season and likely for most teams not just Montreal.

    There were reports circling that Ryan Spooner was available, however, the likelihood that Boston trades with Montreal is about 0%

    On a side note… I’m not sure Colorado is as bad as the standings suggest. They looked pretty good the other night against Boston, but then again the Bruins were already coming off of a game the night before and had their backup goaltender in net. Still, I think that team is better than the standings show.

    • I watched that game. I didn’t think Colorado looked that great. 3 miscues; turnovers leading to break aways & soft goaltending by Khudobin gave them at least 2 of the 1st 3 goals, really all 3. All were great shots but regardless good goalies unscreened make most of those saves. Certainly not all but most.

  5. The team I follow, the Anaheim Ducks, still needs some young top 6 and top 9 forwards. With Fowler playing so well, trading him for one is no longer a sure thing, so what do you guys think is the move that will be made?

    What young forwards could be available for the Ducks?

    • It’s a shame for the Ducks what happened to Simon Despres. I think he was going to be a really good player one day. Low hockey IQ but all the tools. Around 27 or so, he would have figured it out and been a great shutdown D.

      Having said that, if I were the Ducks, I’d be watching what Evander Kane is doing right now and imaging that speed, tenacity and skill on a line with Perry and Getzlaf.

      Then, I’d figure out which of Fowler or Vatanen I can live without. Or maybe offer Theodore. The Ducks should probably ask for a pick back because of Kane’s issues, but…that’s a player who could change the look of that lineup.

      • Gawd you must be a sabre fan, why would the Ducks want that problem. Anaheim wants to trade a young defenceman E. Kane shouldn`t even be a consideration. Anaheim see Colorado or the Islanders, beware of Sabre fans peddling junk.

      • I agree mg Kane would fit the ducks style, the sabres would have to eat some salary tho

      • I’m a Pens fan. I guess you haven’t noticed that 80% of my posts are about Marc Andre Fleury.

        The baggage is the only reason Kane would be available.

        If there is a better winger on the market to play with Perry and Getzlaf, so be it…name him.

      • Since we really don`t know whose available and who isn`t. How about Pacioretty or JVR to start, both teams are looking for defenceman. You don`t throw quality prospects out the door for other teams problems simply because he`s on the market. The fact that bigbear agreed with you should tell you your proposal is bad and besides Kane isn`t exactly playing like a top 6 winger. Why would you put him with Perry, let alone trade for him. I wouldn`t touch him unless Buffalo was throwing Eichel in the deal

      • Bruin, you’re guilty again of over valuing Sabres pieces. Kane isn’t fetching any of those Dman with or without salary retention. You claimed at the start of this season the Sabres were years ahead of the Leafs – that’s not what the standings say.

      • How did I over value Kane wth that comment? And the sabres are ahead of the leafs in the rebuild have you not noticed the injuries they have/had? You are the last person to be talking about over valuing players. It’s 25-30 games into the season the leafs will be in near the basement by the end of the yr.

      • Buff has been rebuilding since the lockout, they`re 1 point ahead and Toronto`s played 2 less games. Some of Buffalo`s high picks have already washed out and been traded for players that Buff is now trying to unload. Some of their so called prospects on defence aren`t panning out and Buff is now trading to fill the spots. Their goaltending is suspect and the cupboards aren`t bare, but not a lot there anymore. Buff is yr.4 of the rebuild, they should be challenging for a playoff spot, even with a couple of injures, not the basement. Again you shoot your mouth off, can`t explain anything. You`re probably scratching your head over the holes in your socks. Come on for once show your hockey IQ explain your comments instead of just yapping at people

      • What would you like me to explain? How ” Kane would fit the ducks style” or how ” the sabres would have to eat some salary” pretty easy to understand I would think? I said nothing about Kane straight up for one of the ducks dmen simply he would fit there style and if there was a trade the sabres would have to eat salary. It’s funny ppl on here get mad at striker for explaining so much or for ppl not explaining enough? This is an opinion site that’s all it is none of us on here really have any idea what’s gonna happen or which player is better than the other it’s just everyone’s opinion

      • You are all correct. everyone outside of a playoff spot in the east suck equally.

    • A GOOD young F will cost them someone like Theodore for certain. They aren’t getting one cheap. However, that trade of Bobby Ryan to Ottawa is starting to pay some dividends up front as Jakob Silfverberg, Stefan Noesen and a first-round draft pick in 2014 which turned out to be Nick Ritchie combined for 4 points the other night in that 6-4 win over Carolina.

      • Your not getting a good young Dman like Theodore unless the good young forward is a serious stud. All things being equal the Dman is more valuable than the forward. The forward needs to be better than the Dman to make these deals fly, as less Dman of this quality available. Simple supply & demand.

        MG. Anaheim isn’t taking on Kane. Not because he’s a flake but because he is over paid & only has 1 year remaining on his deal after this season.

        If Anaheim decides they need a forward or 2 & they may not need a young 1 looking at the kids that are seeing their 1st cups of coffee in the NHL; Sorensen, Kase, Noesen & I’m curious to see Kosilla & Kerdiles as well, they will move 1 of their Dman to do so & there will be tons of suitors & far better options than Kane. Few teams have the D depth that Anaheim has assembled both in the NHL, minors & else where; Larsson & Petersson in Sweden.

      • That’s why I put the GOOD in bloody caps!! Do you feel you MUST offer a counter-argument to EVERY effing post?

      • I have no idea what GOOD means for you. Theodore is a GOOD young Dman & he will need to move for a BETTER than GOOD quality forward.

        Dman generally move at a premium to forwards in almost ever case with a few rare exceptions. I still struggle with the Jones for Johansen trade. I don’t think Nashville got enough compensation although they had a serious need for what Johansen brought to the team & had a ton of Dman so I get it but I still think Columbus wins that deal.

        Calm down George. Did you forget to take your meds this morning? Not everyone George, just the 1’s that I disagree with or don’t understand. No need to get upset. Pretty tame stuff.

        Do you really see Anaheim moving Theodore? I don’t. He’s expansion exempt which even increases his value in trade. Following expansion he will no longer have to play yo-yo between the NHL & AHL & will be ready for a full time role.

        So mush of what happens in Anaheim will depend upon if Bieksa agree’s to waive his NMC for expansion if even asked & Despres’s state of health as to if Anaheim will even move a Dman.

      • The way this works George is this is a chat board. Someone posts I comment & we banter about it back & forth. It’s not a post board. You don’t just post a comment & that’s that & no 1 responds. It stimulates a discussion.

        If you would like me to stop responding to your posts happy to do so. In which case I’ll simply stop reading them as well. Ha-ha!

      • Can’t see theadore moving but I agree striker I don’t think nsh got enough for jones, losing him and Weber have really shown some defensive gaps in their dmen

      • Agree Striker. Vatanen, Fowler, or Theodore are not being moved for Evander Kane. The way Fowler is playing this year, just hitting his prime, if he gets moved, we are talking names like Landeskog, Duchene, etc, in my opinion. Larsson got Taylor Hall but at the time people were saying Fowler was not on Larsson’s level quite. Now that talk is changing.

        Even if they were looking at an Evander Kane type, they would just trade for JVR instead, since he’s a more consistent version of the same type of player. I heard Brandon Saad in the rumor mill too. He would be a much more fair return for Fowler than Evander Kane.

        I also agree with you, trading Shea Theodore would be dumb. Same with Jacob Larsson. Same with Montour. Maybe the Ducks could trade Ondrej Kase, a 1st round pick, and Marcus Pettersson for a good young forward. Something like that. Use draft picks, don’t trade prospects who are already turning out really well at premium positions like defense.

      • To be clear, by JVR I just meant, IF they were to make a bad deal, they would at least go JVR. But JVR is not enough for Cam Fowler or Vatanen either. An injury-riddled wing for consistent, healthy dmen is not a smart deal.

      • A couple of weeks ago I was watching NHL tonight and they were talking about a player (who’s name escapes me at the moment) and all three analysts had come to the conclusion that they had not seen enough of this player to really judge his play….. Immediately I thought they should have phoned in Striker for his take.

      • Most of us are content with making a point without going into a long-winded initial post or retort. And when I say GOOD in that fashion I mean exactly that – no effing different than your repetitious “stud” crapola. For Jaysus sake, try and contribute without the effing lectures. It’s grown tiresome day after day after day. Can you spell “narcissist?”

      • No 1’s forcing you to read it George. That’s your choice. I don’t like your style of writing either & until now haven’t complained about it. We rarely agree or see eye to eye & I have no issue with that but I’m going to respond if I disagree or want clarification.

        It’s ok to disagree. I’m not trying to be condescending what I’m trying to do is to get you to clarify your post or provide an example or additional insight.

        I try to support my opinions with facts where possible. Where not, with historical reference, if none available I may try to hypothesize & if I do provide some form of reference to such.

        Rarely do I just start complaining & stamping my feet like your post to an innocuous comment. Does it really get you that upset that I would like a reference as to your perception of GOOD? If it does you should look at getting help. You may be bipolar or suffer from some form on disorder that appears to require medication. Ha-ha!

        I wasn’t trying to pull your chain as I often do.

      • @striker- a word of advice. If you insist on writing an essay it would help all if you improved your writing style. I understand your hockey knowledge is limited. But Your long posts are difficult to read due to the poor writing skills.

  6. I kinda like Martin Hanzal as a fit for the Habs. A big center sounds like exactly what they need.

    The price now probably won’t be too much different than the ask at the deadline, I’d call up Chyka and offer some obscure prospects.

    Maybe Bergevin can sucker them into taking Zach Fuchale.

    • Chayka is ripe for the pickings. Lou has opened up the trade route with him and I’m hoping there’s more to come. He’s asking the moon now apparently, but the price on Hanzal will come down and ditto Duclair and others.

      • I think the reason ARI picked up Holland is to see what he is before moving Hanzel. NO he is NOT replacing Hanzel ,just the position. Hanzel fit with the Habs. Not sure if a pick gets it done or pick and prospect.

      • My first thought with the Holland deal was that Arizona will now check in on Montreal and see what they’d like to do. Holland to Montreal is more possible now, especially if he has two or three solid games with the Coyotes.

      • Kane has 3 goals, 2 assists and 19 shots in the last 6 games.

        I highly doubt Pacioretty is available and if he were, Fowler isn’t enough.

        JVR might be (should be) available and has a better contract.

      • (Clearly not where I meant that reply about Kane to go.)

        The early returns on Moneypuck are both unimpressive and exactly what I expected.

        I’d call Chyka and Rowe offering every scrub player in my system with a good Corsi.

  7. So Holland moves for a conditional 6th. Only to be paid if resigned or traded this season. That’s worse than I expected. It did meet the discussion we had about the real return just getting his contract off the 50 contract limit.

  8. NYR4…..LOL……

    There is a saying “Stats are for Losers ” . There are intangibles when it comes to players and teams.

    • Ahem to that

      • Nuts

  9. Shticky,

    I just saw your apology from the other day. Pretty big of you! I also apologize for the things in recent weeks. I really don’t like going there either. I’ve tried to not go down that road since Jello was banned.

    • Ya it’s true some of what you said I was getting to kinda be like the trash that bothers me here and I don’t want to be that way, so I’m just going to leave it at that. Ignore it and carry on from here. Tired of reading it from others and tired of being part of it.
      Cheers man

      • 2 thumbs up !

  10. Ruby, if you’re referring to JVR as an injury riddled winger, when he broke his foot last year that was the first games he missed as a Leaf, about 250 games straight, George and Striker, you both make great comments often, kiss and make up, it’s Christmastime!!! Lol

  11. Montreal will not trade for a Dman I think they found one in Redman 6-2 R shot always liked this guy only thing that holds him back is he’s always injured …

    Montreal needs to focus on Offense and a big NO for Hanzal unless you get him for a 2nd round pick or less which won’t happen…
    I’d kick the tires around Duchense and RNH I don’t see Edmonton asking for the moon for a guy that has not many points this year and is a disappointment year after year. I think he needs a new team .. Also if I was any NHL team next season id be sending a huge offer sheet edmontons Leon D. way.

    How about TB this team is falling apart loosing stamkos and rumours of trading Bishop making him nervous and not motivated like he won’t be part of the teams future. They need to trade him asap if they want to make the playoffs…