NHL Rumor Mill – February 16, 2017
Updates on the Avalanche, Coyotes, Canucks and Senators in your NHL rumor mill.
THE DENVER POST: Terry Frei reports Colorado Avalanche general manager Joe Sakic isn’t saying what his plans are leading up to the March 1 trade deadline. However, he made it clear he’ll continue listening to offers, including those for right wing Jarome Iginla, provided he can be moved to a playoff contender.
Sakic hopes to boster his blueline depth both in the short term and for the future. He also said he won’t make a move just for the sake of doing so, and downplayed his recent scouting trip of several Eastern Conference clubs. Sakic also said first-year coach Jared Bednar’s job is safe and expects sidelined starting goalie Semyon Varlamov (hip surgery) to be fully healthy next season.
ESPN.COM: Pierre LeBrun reports Iginla’s $5.33 million cap hit could make him difficult to move. A source said the Los Angeles Kings have “kicked around the merits” of acquiring the 39-year-old winger, but the Avs would have to pick up part of that cap hit. LeBrun speculates the Edmonton Oilers were rumored as a possible destination for Iginla, but he feels their focus is on adding a third-line center. He also speculates the Avs haven’t received much interest from rival clubs in the veteran winger.
SPECTOR’S NOTE: If Iginla was still on a 20-goal pace as he was last season, I believe the interest would be higher. But with only seven goals and 15 points in 54 games, it’s obvious that age and the wear and tear of 20 NHL seasons has finally caught up to him.
In other trade speculation, LeBrun suggests Tampa Bay Lightning center Brian Boyle could be a good alternative for teams that fail to acquire center Martin Hanzal from the Arizona Coyotes.
New Jersey Devils pending UFAs P.A. Parenteau and Kyle Quincey could hit the trade block before the deadline.
The Calgary Flames need a top-nine forward to help their offense and a defenseman, “perhaps as a rental.”
The Toronto Maple Leafs won’t sacrifice assets for a short-term fix just because they’re in playoff contention this season. If they do decide to make a move, they could free up over $13 million by placing Nathan Horton, Joffrey Lupul and Stephane Robidas on long-term injured reserve.
Not as much trade talk regarding the San Jose Sharks compared to previous trade deadlines.
ARIZONA SPORTS: Craig Morgan reports the Coyotes haven’t had substantive contract talks with pending UFAs Martin Hanzal and Michael Stone, making them the most likely to be dealt. Morgan believes it’ll take more than a mid-round pick to pry UFA winger (and the Coyotes’ leading scorer) Radim Vrbata away from Arizona. General manager John Chayka said there’s been no discussion whatsoever with captain Shane Doan about waiving his no-trade clause.
VANCOUVER SUN: Iain MacIntyre reports veteran Canucks forwards Alex Burrows and Jannik Hansen have some trade value, but their no-trade clauses complicates things. As a result, they will largely determine whether they’ll be dealt before the March 1 deadline. MacIntyre doubts goaltender Ryan Miller, who also has a no-movement clause, gets traded. He also considers defenseman Erik Gudbranson their most marketable commodity, but he’s currently sidelined by a hand injury. The June expansion draft could also make it difficult to do a straight hockey trade rather than a rental deal.
OTTAWA SUN: Bruce Garrioch reports trade rumors are swirling around young Senators forward Curtis Lazar, who was a healthy scratch in the club’s last four games. “Lazar’s agent J.P. Barry is meeting with Senators GM Pierre Dorion later this week, and TSN’s Darren Dreger tweeted he “wouldn’t be surprised” if Lazar requests a trade,” writes Garrioch, who said no such request has been made yet. If the Sens shop Lazar, Garrioch expects they’ll want “a high pick in return.”
SPECTOR’S NOTE: Garrioch reports today that Lazar and his agent are expected to meet with Dorion on Saturday to discuss the winger’s future and his options, which could include a trade.