NHL Rumor Mill – January 12, 2017

by | Jan 12, 2017 | Rumors | 62 comments

Colorado Avalanche reportedly set high asking prices for Matt Duchene and Gabriel Landeskog.

Latest on the Colorado Avalanche, Arizona Coyotes, Minnesota Wild, Montreal Canadiens & more in your NHL Rumor Mill. 

SPORTSNET: In his recent “30 Thoughts” column, Elliotte Friedman reports the Colorado Avalanche and Arizona Coyotes are the only two clubs that consider themselves out of playoff contention. The Coyotes have set high asking prices for their players, as have the Avalanche with players carrying term on their contracts.

He said the Avs are starting to get inquiries about pending free agents such as Rene Bourque, Jarome Iginla, John Mitchell and Fedor Tyutin, who could be more affordable. 

Friedman considers the Carolina Hurricanes a logical trading partner for the Avalanche. The Hurricanes carry depth in good young defensemen. Avs forwards Gabriel Landeskog and Matt Duchene are carrying term on their contracts, which is usually what the Hurricanes prefer. 

SPECTOR’S NOTE:  I agree with Friedman regarding the Hurricanes as possible trade partners for the Avs. In addition to their depth in young blueliners, they also have sufficient cap space to take on someone such as Duchene, who could fill their need for a true top-line center. 

Friedman claims  “Chicago, Los Angeles and Ottawa” are looking for a forward. Tampa Bay seeks “something to send a jolt through the roster” He believes the Boston Bruins “are clearly ready to do something.” The Bruins recently rejected a deal with the Avalanche that would’ve involved parting with promising blueliner Brandon Carlo. It’s the second time they’ve done that, as Carlo was thought to be part of the Winnipeg Jets’ asking price for Jacob Trouba. 

SPECTOR’S NOTE: It’s obvious the Bruins won’t part with Carlo. They need secondary scoring and have plenty of promising blueline prospects to offer up as trade bait, apart from the untouchable Charlie McAvoy. 

Friedman also believes the Montreal Canadiens could be involved in the trade market. He notes colleague Nick Kypreos recently claimed Habs center Tomas Plekanec could be shopped by the deadline if his play doesn’t improve. However, Friedman notes Plekanec is the Habs’ most trusted defensive center. 

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Plekanec is also signed through next season at a cap hit of $6 million. If he’s a declining player, I don’t see many teams being interested in that contract at the trade deadline.

TSN:  Darren Dreger reports the Colorado Avalanche seek “a top-level defenseman, a first-round pick plus” for Landeskog. He claims talk around the league is that’s an outrageous ask, as Landeskog is seen more as a second-line winger.

Pierre LeBrun feels there’s a better chance the Avs make their serious moves in the offseason regarding Landeskog or perhaps Matt Duchene. He believes they must decide if this is a full teardown or simply a retooling. 

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Regardless of when the Avs make a significant move or their decisions on their future roster plans, they’re not getting a top-level defenseman, a first-round pick and more for Landeskog. They won’t get that for Duchene. They might get that for Nathan MacKinnon, provided they’re willing to part with him.

LeBrun notes the Minnesota Wild are very deep at defense and prefer to keep it that way, but they stand to lose a good player via the expansion draft in June. However, GM Chuck Fletcher won’t trade a defenseman before the trade deadline. He feels they could be in the market for a forward, but not at the expense of one of their blueliners. 

SPECTOR’S NOTE: With the Wild playing well, Fletcher obviously doesn’t want to hurt his blueline chemistry this season. I suspect he’ll take his chances in the offseason. 


  1. I would think Matt Duchene should fetch a pretty strong return. It’s been lost in the Avs’ misuse of him what a great player he is…

    But, I think there is a fit between Dallas and Tampa for a deal.

    The reason Dallas can’t move a goalie is that no one wants to take back one of their current guys with their awful contracts.

    But Tampa has an awful contract they can send back the other way: Jason Garrison. Garrison makes 4.6 M with two years left. Niemi is 4.5 M with two years left.

    Bishop and Garrison to Dallas for Niemi, Hudler (need to clear his salary) and one of the Stars young defenseman.

    There would have be a conditional pick involved depending on whether Dallas resigned Bishop to an extension or not.

    • The issue that you have is they don’t want to trade Niemi. He is actually playing really well. It is Lehtonen they want to trade. Niemi does not have two more years. Both goalies have this and next year only. What Dallas needs to do is trade Kari and something to a team like Detroit did with Datsyuk to just dump him and then go get Bishop.

      • Again that would need to be a team like Canes who have tones of space and would require quite the sweetener in the deal that I’m not sure Dallas could spare.

    • Sorry but that Dallas/Tampa Bay swap makes no sense to me. Tampa Bay is giving up one of the league’s elite performing goalies and a bad contract/under achieving player for another bad contract/under achieving player and another player who’s been a complete non-factor this entire season. Even if there was a high draft pick attached to it Tampa Bay is looking for help now, not a future pick.

      • Tampa would free up almost $4 M in cap space in said deal to help them now.

        But evidently making sure you have an elite backup goalie for the playoffs is more important than making the playoffs.

        The Lightning are a mess. They were the one team in the East I feared coming into the season. I’d sign in blood for a first round matchup with them now.

    • Why is it imperative that the Lightning trade Bishop. He is a good goalie. The value of his puck handling and first passes is more apparent after watching Vasy play 10 in a row; his puck stopping is good but his rebound control and puck handling still need work. Most promotions to #1 occur after far more pro games than he has under his belt. “Bad” cap contracts include Garrison, Filpula, and Callahan. Pipeline strength is forward/center. Probably the Bolts will also lose a large potential or actual contract in expansion, but not one of the bad ones as no-movement clauses are involved. It is worth asking where Bishop wants to play. He as rejected by several organizations before coming to the Lightning for Conacher. He has flourished in Tampa Bay. Several Lightning players have made team friendly deals to stay. I’m not willing to concede that Bishop, after avoiding the expansion draft as a UFA, won’t want to sign back with the Bolts. This is especially true if his injury history reduces his general market value a bit. The same injury history may impact his trade value as well… and makes it imperative that the Yzerplan include a 1 and a 1A for a while. Bishop may find his peak value playing only 50 regular season games so as to be strong for the playoffs. Vasieleski will get a net as a number one pretty soon, but will be only 25 three years from now. Bishop will be 33.

      Even if this injury plagued year results in a playoff miss, I don’t think the Lightning improve their cup window by trading a Vezina candidate goalie for a ‘good’ defenseman. The team is asset rich on the front line. The chance to save one bad season with an OK D’man isn’t worth breaking up the plan. That attitude is typical of a team in the midst of a decade of futility. If you aren’t going to be able to retain Bishop, and do want to move him, move one of your difficult front line contracts as well, give some work to your system goalies (Gudlevskis), and get D. No need for a goalie back; average backups are a dime a dozen, sometimes on the waiver wire. But the NHL minutes have high value to the young players you are developing. This is especially true if the playoffs move farther out of reach, which one more major injury might accomplish. There are some markets where “this year” thinking dominates. Tampa is not that market.

    • What young Dallas Dman would anyone want & Dallas be willing to trade? This is 1 of the worst D’s in the NHL, just because their young doesn’t mean they have any promise or future. I see no market for Johns, Oleksiak or Nemeth unless they give them away for virtually nothing & they won’t move Klingberg, Lindell or Honka.

      No 1’s taking either Lehtonen or Niemi back in trade nor is TB moving out Garrison. 1 or both will be bought out by Dallas this summer. Trading Garrison doesn’t make TB’s D better. He is being forced to play at least 1 if not 2 spots above his abilities in TB but moving him doesn’t help, he plays as their #3 in TOI/GP but has the misfortune to play with whoever is playing the #6 spot on the 3rd pairing. His salary isn’t an albatross it was signed in a different cap era. In real dollars he’s being paid 3.6 this season & 2.5 next. He will be exposed in expansion & go unselected. Garrisons contract will have trade value to teams that play the cap game.

      Garrison’s played well for TB. He has been a significant contribution to both their extended playoff runs but like TB is struggling this season. By no means solely his fault but D partner, team & circumstance. Having to carry, Koekkoek or Witowski is no easy feat.

  2. Duchene Rask Staal would be very strong down the middle for the Canes, that paired with still a good blue line could turn them around pretty quickly. I wonder if it would have to be Hanafin or if they would go for a package of 1 of the other young D and Carolinas 1st.

    • No doubt that Colorado is asking for Hanafin. Has 120 games in already as a 19 yr old. No 19 yr old D Man is a sure thing, but man the kid has all the tools to be a #1. A rare piece.
      Risky call, so my guess is Carolina is waiting to see if the price comes down, which it likely will.
      Schticky if you are Carolina and the ask is Faulk or Hanafin who do you keep?
      I think I would roll the dice with Hanafin.

      • Oh no doubt about it I say Hanafin, if I can get a true no 1 centre and I had to choose right this minute between the 2 but I’m just not certain I do it for Duchene.

      • Not moving any Dman of this quality unless confronted with no choice. Carolina is far from confronted with no choice. Carolina is right on the cusp of taking a serious step up. Another year may 2 for all the young players to get better & 1 or 2 more solid 2nd & 3rd line players which I assume will be acquired the same way they acquired Teravainen from Chi. Using their cap space to their advantage.

        After a brutal start they now sit 3 points out of the last wildcard spot in the east with 2 games in hand on Philadelphia.

      • I agree striker I don’t see the canes moving any of those dman right away they have time to wait

    • Slavin, tervo, 2nd for Dusch, 3rd. get er done.

  3. “Friedman claims “Chicago, Los Angeles and Ottawa” are looking for a forward.”

    Where Ottawa is concerned he must have plucked that from the “No S*^t Sherlock” file because it’s well known that the Sens have been looking for a F starting with the last 2 years of Murray’s tenure as GM. They lead the league in “looking.”

    • It’s a very specific “eye test” that a forward must pass to be a Senator. Blame Bobby Ryan, he made them gun shy.

  4. Quick note to everyone here. From now on, namecalling will no longer be tolerated here. Calling people morons, jerks, trolls or worse simply because you don’t agree with their opinion is unwarranted. If you can’t debate or disagree with someone without calling them names, don’t waste your time posting here. All you’re doing is turning the comments section into a kindergarten playground. I don’t care who starts it, nor do I care who’s the biggest perpetrator. If this continues, the guilty parties will be banned. I’m busy enough without having to delete offending comments.

    Also, I’ve noticed some of you complaining about the length of Striker’s posts. Here’s a thought: if you find his comments too lengthy, don’t waste your time reading them. I might not agree with Striker’s take on some things, but he has every right to express his views. He’s not doing anything wrong by writing lengthy comments.

    To sum up, act like adults. Enough of the personal insults and complaints about lengthy posts. I’m sure you can all debate/disagree without resorting to namecalling or whining about the word count in someone’s posts.

    • If this works, I may post a little more often.

      • Thank you Lyle
        I do enjoy some of the comments on your site; the ones that are positioned, well thought out, backed by some facts and even personal opinions that dont reflect mine and as you say they should be respectful…Your blog is the first one I read every morning after TSN and RDS.
        I have been a Montréal fan for over 60 years but now since the PK trade (though I do like Weber) I am leaning towards the Jets as my team…hope they develop a system that reflects their team…skilled, fast and big

    • Thank you.

    • Thanks for this Lyle, that Styxcanada guy can be such an ass sometimes I hope he reads this 🙂

    • Good call Lyle. I like Mr. Striker and have subtly and not so called him out for length… MOSTLY because when using your site on a phone means swiping like 8 to ten times a post. But I respect his opinion. Most of my jibes were meant to be friendly jabs. If they took offense I do apologize. It is so hard to slide sarcasm into this forum. I called a dude… “dumb” in this are a few days ago… but he was Such a Meany… I hope that doesnt count either. Love your site more than the rest Lyle… Keep up the good work. Chris

    • Omg lyle, this not is a god send. Dont no if you notice my sudden lack of participation. I tried to tell them about the option not to read a post myself.

      Sad that name calling and such is something you even have to address.

      Ad hominem arguments never get one any where.

      But, thanks alot. Long over due.

  5. I think a deal with the avs and habs involving duschene makes sense mcniven juulsen a 1st to start and money either way. The canes have built such a good young d core I can’t see them breaking that up? Aho rask and other young forwards also coming along nicely

    • BigBruin, that’s simply not a sufficient return. The MON 1st figures to be a late 1st, Juulsen himself was a late 1st and I wasn’t impressed with him aside from his physical play at the WJC and a goaltender at that age is a crap shoot.

      The Avs will look for a package built around a young stud already in the NHL, IMO.

  6. On the subject of the Wild waiting until the season is over or they are out of contention to make a trade – that’s fine for Leaf fans looking at their D corp. With our team also in contention, we’re happy to wait till the offseaon to take Dumba or Brodin off their hands.

    • Can’t see the leafs having what the wild want, they will want a dman prospect back which the leafs don’t have much of. The wild have a lot of good looking forwards coming up as we saw at world juniors

      • Nonsense, they have regularly been in the rumours seeking scoring. They would deal from their organizational strength on the backend, with the best 1 through 6 in the league as Lebrun pointed out, and where they face a challenge going into the expansion draft.

        It’s quite obvious they would make a good trading partner for the Leafs in the offseason.

      • Minnesota is 7th in the league in scoring? With the likes of Tuch,greenway,Ericsson ek and kaprizov coming up the Offense shouldn’t be a problem

    • Agreed.

      To Bigbadbruin. Why would Minnesota want a D prospect back? Not saying 1 may not be included but what Minnesota will want is a good young player on an ELC or cap friendly contract, prospects or picks.

      Even after moving at least 1 Dman before the expansion draft, if not 2 there D is still really strong. Suter, Spurgeon, Dumba are locks to be protected & 1 of Scandella but I assume Brodin will be moved, if not Brodin, he would be lost in expansion. Protecting 8 skaters isn’t a good scenario for Minnesota either but it’s possible especially if Minnesota bites the bullet & buys out the final 2 season of Pominville’s contract eliminating the need to protect him with his NMC.

      Folin is getting better every year, Reilly & Olofsson, Belpedio & Soucy will all be NHL Dman eventually.

      • Never have enough d prospects coming up especially with how many teams are looking for dmen. The wild have a bunch of good forward prospects coming up as I stated above

      • BigBruin, they clearly do not want a D prospect back. Just move on, man

      • Imo they will want one back,

      • I agree Bigbadbruin on the forward prospects as well in Minny. I don’t think if a trade between Toronto & Minny can be found will come down to forward or D but best return of either with pick or picks.

        There is certainly a fit. Minny will need to move at least 1 Dman & Toronto certainly could use 1 & has the assets to acquire 1. Unfortunately many bidders so the price will be high.

      • Indeed Striker.

  7. Off topic, M. Staal had another concussion. Yikes. He has been pretty healthy for a while. I hope this isn’t the end for him.

    • He and MacArthur may need to finally face reality and get out while they can still recognize their family.

      • It’s gotta be such a tough decision giving up something you love, but knowing what could happen for the future with another concussion

      • Agree with both you guys. I hate the contract but love the player. But maybe his time to walk away is now.

      • A lot of good NHLers have had to hang ‘em up due to concussions led, of course, by Eric Lindros. Another in that vein is Pat Lafontaine. Then you have 2 guys who certainly were the cause of a few – Stu Grimson (The Grim Reaper) and Scott Stevens. The best goalie that comes to mind is Mike Richter, who was between the pipes when the NYR last won the cup. Others I can recall include Geoff Courtnall, Adam Deadmarch, Keith Primeau and Mat Barnaby. I’ve probably missed quite a few as well.

    • As someone who’s had more than a few concussions (you guys can probably tell from my comments 🙂 ). The last guy to ask is the guy who’s been hit in the head too many times. Someone else is likely going to need to be centrally involved in the decision for him.

      His whole identity is likely strongly linked to being a hockey player. There are also likely several folks around him who are extremely invested in him being a hockey player and either making big money or helping the team. Here’s hoping he’s got someone who’s totally on his side and can help him make the best possible decision for him.

  8. Boston rejected Winnipeg when asked for Carlo in a Trouba deal. I wonder what the other pieces were? I had no issues flipping Carlo for Trouba; however I know it wasn’t one for one. If I was Boston I would revisit that deal and see if the asking price has come down with Carlo strong play. But it might of went up, Trouba has been Winnipeg best dman. I so badly wanted that deal done. Carlo, Zboril and a second?

    • I’ve always thought of trouba being a number one and he is starting to show it! I agree it would have to be dmen going back with the good young forwards the jets have.

    • Yeah I never heard that one either. I think Boston would move Carlo for Trouba but who knows how much more they wanted.
      I would do Calo spooner and a second round. Not sure if that’s enough. But you have to think Trouba still wants out eventually

    • You would think he still wants out, but WPG could move another D man to give him what he wants, from his play deserves.
      IF you believe his claim that it was about playing the proper side.
      If WPG insists on a “similar” player back, that is not the easiest deal to make. With Weber for Subban being an exception. Both parties do it to improve their team which is often selling from an area of strength for an area of weakness, cap relief, rebuild vs contender etc.
      Still think Chevvy will need to bend on that and get creative elsewhere if Trouba still insists on being moved. Which might not be true anymore.

      • Ray, do you really believe it was just an issue of deployment? Smacks me as a cover story, more than anything

      • Dan, hence the capital IF in my post. I have no idea, just taking him at his word.
        If I had to bet…. I would say no, but I don’t know Jacob personally.

  9. Trouba for Duchene makes sense for both teams, only problem is they play in the same division but this is a deal that would make sense for both teams IMO. That would give Winnipeg a great 1/2 punch at center and Colorado their potential number 1 dman.

    I still think RNH would be a good fit in Carolina and always thought he would be better suited for the eastern conference. Would RNH + Edmontons 2nd (possibly first Lottery protected) be enough to get Hanifin (or Faulk)?

    • I don’t move Trouba for Duchene. That said I wouldn’t have moved Jones for Johansen although I understand & respect why Nashville did so. Depth at D, Jones pending contract, Nashville’s serious need for a legitimate #1 C made this a great fit for both teams but I would have wanted more for Jones & I want more fpor Trouba as well. I have no doubts Trouba is going to be a stud #1 Dman in 2 years. Just not in Win.

      • What do you mean not in Winnipeg, who wouldn’t love these -40 wind chill the last few days in Winnipeg. When walking my dog I could hardly wait for him to poop, so I could have something warm in my hand.

      • Lol completely opposite here in Ontario I got soaked last night taking mine for a walk

      • I think they could worse then Duchene, I understand the logic in moving him for a similar Dman just think with the trade request already out in the open it will be hard to so. I am not a Bryan Little fan and he only has one year left I am sure they could move him as well.

      • Caper, at least you pick it up, unlike where I walk my dog off leash in St Albert.
        The best part is my 9 month old pup (Bobby) likes to eat it when it’s frozen and plays chase me when I try and get it from him.
        Then he pukes it up later in the evening.

    • Actually given the performance of the Avs (and Yotes and my Isles). I’m not sure them “playing” in the same division is accurate Dino 🙂 Hell they often don’t even seem to be playing in the same league.

  10. Duchene would be a good fit here in Philly. A team that needs a lot of scoring help. If a young defenseman is what they want in return for him, then the farm system has at least 4 potential franchise defenseman. Hexy has to make a move, team is embarrassing to watch anymore.

    • I would do Ghost and a little extra for Duchene

  11. Minni wants to make a run so they are looking for more scoring. Getting JVR could give them just what they want and Brodin or Dumba would a fair return. There might have to be a pick or prospect included either way depending on how hungry either team is. Too bad the Leafs couldn’t do JVR for future considerations but I don’t think that is allowed anymore? TO gets to bring up another young guy and the Wild gets to make their run intact and then not lose a Dman in expansion. Anyway I don’t know if the Wild could fit JVR into their cap until the trade deadline.

    • Good post Tug, but I think the Leafs and Wild could balance the dollars somehow and maybe there would have to be another piece involved.

      Thing is, Min is playing so well, with no obvious need for offense or obviously defense that it’s hard to see them making a big move right now.

      I think in the offseason, you’ll see the Leafs go aggressive in getting a Dumba, Brodin, Fowler, whatever, as you saw with Andersen. A lot of people thought that was an overpayment at the time, not so much now!

  12. Landy and duchene for 1st 2017,2nd 2017,1st 2018,2nd 2018,Juulsen,Scherback,McCarron,DD,Plekanek,McNiven

    • Yes, and they bring back Roy!

  13. Eberle , RNH for Plekanec,Gallagher,DD,McCarron,Juulsen and 1st 2017

  14. The Isles are brutal and can’t seem to score of late. Not sure why they aren’t on the seller list yet. Given that the new ownership is apparently shopping around for a senior exec to run things I’m wondering if Snow is allowed to play with the big boy toys anymore or if he’s been told not to do anything rash.

    My fear, as a suffering Isles fan, is that he tries to do something dramatic to save his job and really screws something up. Like Barzal, Ho Sang, Pullock and a first for the rights to Gordie Howe and a new zamboni

    • Kinda curious about Ho Sang sent home last year, 20 years old now not exactly lighting up the AHL… tick tock clock is starting to count down on that first rounder if you ask me. Yes still young and can turn things around but I’m not sure he is the calibre of prospect some think he is.