NHL Evening Rumor Update – February 28, 2017
Pre-trade deadline needs of the Canadian NHL teams plus updates on Matt Duchene, Jaroslav Halak, Ryan Miller, Valtteri Filppula & more in your NHL evening rumor update.
TSN: Pierre LeBrun reports Montreal Canadiens general manager Marc Bergevin will be working the phones seeking a deal for his club right up to the deadline tomorrow. He was unsuccessful in his efforts to land centers Martin Hanzal and Brian Boyle, plus he also checked in on Alex Burrows before he was dealt to Ottawa.
LeBrun reports the Calgary Flames have looked at Arizona Coyotes right wing Radim Vrbata. They continue to look at their goaltending, though LeBrun doesn’t think they’ll make a move there. He also doesn’t rule out adding a defenseman. He suggests tonight’s game against the LA Kings could determine what they do before the deadline tomorrow.
Darren Dreger reports the Ottawa Senators have an offer of a second-round pick for young forward Curtis Lazar, but they want a better offer to move him by the deadline.
Dreger also believes Winnipeg Jets winger Drew Stafford could be dealt tonight or tomorrow. They had expressed an interest in New Jersey Devils defenseman Kyle Quincey, but that doesn’t seem a fit now. They could continue to look at blueliners.
Bob McKenzie reports the Toronto Maple Leafs have sufficient salary-cap space (around $13 million) to make another move at the trade deadline. They could use it to take on another contract provided it also brings them a premium asset. He doesn’t think they’ll just sit on the hands at the deadline.
McKenzie reports the Edmonton Oilers have been linked to NY Islanders goalie Jaroslav Halak, who’s currently in the minors. Philadelphia Flyers netminder Michal Neuvirth could be of interest as a backup rental for them. They’d like to get a third-line center but it remains to be seen if they’ll land one.
SPECTOR’S NOTE: No mention of the Vancouver Canucks, but that’s probably because they’re the only seller among the Canadian clubs. I think the Canadiens options for a good rental center have dried up now that Hanzal and Boyle are gone. I’ll be very surprised if someone ponies up a first-round pick for Lazar.
I’ll be surprised if the Leafs don’t make one more move by tomorrow, perhaps to take on a contract if it lands them a first-round pick or a top prospect. The Flames and Boston Bruins are also reportedly looking at Halak, who has a year left on his contract with a $4.5 million cap hit.
BSN DENVER’s Adrian Dater tweets the following on Colorado Avalanche center Matt Duchene: “Hearing that once-heavy Avs-Isles trade talks for Duchene have cooled. Sakic may have to wait til draft.”
THN.COM’s Matt Larkin on New York Islanders goaltender Jaroslav Halak: “Sources telling me three teams indeed in on Halak. Goalie market all about him. Expect a trade to happen.”
ESPN.com’s Craig Custance also weighs in on Halak: “Oilers among the interested in Jaroslav Halak. Could see Flames & Bruins in there too. Islanders would have to retain salary though.”
Jannik Hansen and Ryan Miller
He also reports the following on Canucks goalie Ryan Miller: “The Alberta teams are not on Ryan Miller’s trade-approved list, and thus far, San Jose has shown little interest.”
SPECTOR’S NOTE: Ouch! Feel the Hansen burn there, Habs. Then again, that high-pressure market isn’t for everyone.
TSN’s Bob McKenzie on Tampa Bay Lightning center Valtteri Filppula: “TB has list of 16 teams Valtteri Filppula can be traded to; 13 he can’t. Belief is TB has approached him to consider waiving to one of 13.”
SPECTOR’S NOTE: Filppula also has another year left on his contract with a cap hit of $5 million. The Lightning might have to pick up half of that to move him at the deadline.
ESPN.COM’s Pierre LeBrun on Buffalo Sabres defenseman Dmitry Kulikov: “Once Brendan Smith deal to NYR is finalized, much attention will turn to Kulikov. Sabres have gotten calls from multiple teams already.”