NHL Rumor Mill – June 29, 2017

by | Jun 29, 2017 | Rumors | 126 comments

Are the Toronto Maple Leafs linked to Colorado Avalanche center Matt Duchene?

Latest on Matt Duchene, Kevin Shattenkirk, Joe Thornton and more in your NHL rumor mill.

BSN DENVER: Adrian Dater reports sources say the bulk of a report claiming Colorado Avalanche general manager Joe Sakic turning down an offer from the New York Islanders of defenseman Travis Hamonic and a 2018 first-round pick for center Matt Duchene “is untrue”. While Hamonic may have been offered, the first-round pick was not part of the deal. Dater also said the characterization of Duchene’s agent Pat Brisson being “seriously unhappy” is “well overblown.” 

TSN: Pierre McGuire said he’s heard Duchene connected in the trade rumor mill to the Toronto Maple Leafs. He cautions he’s not sure if it’s true or not. Noting the Avs need a defenseman, McGuire wonders why they didn’t acquire Hamonic. Gord Miller wonders if Sakic’s asking price is too high or if the Isles aren’t as high on Duchene as believed. Miller suggests Carolina and potentially Tampa Bay having the players to land Duchene. McGuire disagrees regarding the Lightning and doesn’t see the Hurricanes trading Jaccob Slavin or Brett Pesce. 

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Whatever the reason why a Duchene-for-Hamonic deal didn’t go down between the Avs and Isles, I think it could be because Sakic has a set price in mind. He doesn’t want to move Duchene just for the sake of doing so. However, the longer this drags out, the fewer options potentially available for Sakic.  

As for linking Duchene to the Leafs, I’m in agreement with Miller. If Sakic wants a good defenseman as part of the deal, the Leafs don’t have any to spare. The only suitable one is Morgan Rielly and they’re not moving him. Duchene plays best at center and the Leafs already have Auston Matthews, Nazem Kadri and Tyler Bozak at that position. And no, you don’t dump Bozak and acquire Duchene to skate on the third line. That would be silly.  

Pierre LeBrun reports the Montreal Canadiens have looked into reacquiring Alexei Emelin from the Vegas Golden Knights. He isn’t sure if they’ll proceed. The Senators are also looking at Emelin.

Darren Dreger tweets the Canadiens and Winnipeg Jets have had discussions with Washington Capitals UFA defenseman Karl Alzner. Dreger also sees Washington free agent winger Justin Williams as a player of interest for the Dallas Stars. 

SPECTOR’S NOTE: The Canadiens need experienced depth on defense so it’s no wonder they’re looking at Alzner and considering a re-acquisition of Emelin. If they’re unable to land the former, perhaps they’ll put more effort into dealing for the latter.

NEW YORK POST: Brett Cyrgalis speculates the Rangers re-signing defenseman Brendan Smith “likely puts an end to any idea the Rangers would go out and sign coveted free-agent right-handed defenseman Kevin Shattenkirk to the long-term deal he will command on the open market.”

NORTHJERSEY.COM: Andrew Gross lists Shattenkirk, left wing Thomas Vanek and defenseman Cody Franson as three players the New Jersey Devils may target via free agency on July 1. 

SPECTOR’S NOTE: I agree with Cyrgalis. Everything I’ve heard in recent days suggests it’s increasingly unlikely the Rangers will pursue Shattenkirk via free agency. Maybe if he’s willing to accept less than market, but I don’t see that happening. If Shattenkirk wants to sign close to New York, the Devils would be a suitable option as they have considerably more cap space than the Blueshirts. However, Shattenkirk might not be keen to join a rebuilding club. We’ll find out soon enough. 

THE MERCURY NEWS: Paul Gackle weighs in on reports claiming the Los Angeles Kings have interest in San Jose Sharks center Joe Thornton. He suggests it’s unlikely Thornton will sign with the Kings, noting the 37-year-old center wants to win now. He points out the Kings lack depth on defense and high-end speed at forward. Gackle also thinks Thornton could be using the conversation with the Kings as leverage in his negotiations with the Sharks. He doubts the Sharks will part company with Thornton and Patrick Marleau unless they’ve got a solid backup plan to replace them. 

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Gackle makes some excellent points regarding the Kings’ apparent interest in Thornton. The one trump card  working in the Kings’ favor is their close proximity to San Jose. If Thornton feels strongly about staying close to his family but cannot get a new deal with the Sharks, the Kings could be the best option. 

MLIVE.COM:  Trevor Daley, Ron Hainsey, Dan Girardi and Brian Campbell are among several pending UFA defensemen who could be of interest to the Detroit Red Wings. 

VANCOUVER SUN: Jason Botchford lists several UFAs (including Michael Del Zotto, Sam Gagner, Nail Yakupov and Jordan Weal) as possible free agent options for the Vancouver Canucks could target via free agency. 

SPECTOR’S NOTE: The Wings and Canucks could get some grief from their fans over potentially pursuing one or two veterans via free agency when they’re supposed to be rebuilding. However, it’s never a bad idea to bring in a couple of experienced players on affordable short-term deals to address specific roster needs. The Wings, for example, could use someone like Daley, Hainsey or Campbell if Niklas Kronwall’s bad knee continues to hamper his effectiveness on their already thin blueline. 

You don’t want to overload your promising young players. Otherwise, you risk hurting their development. As long as the contracts aren’t unreasonable and those veterans don’t take away key playing time from younger talent, it’s worthwhile to make those additions. 



  1. “Pierre LeBrun reports the Montreal Canadiens have looked into reacquiring Alexei Emelin from the Vegas Golden Knights. He isn’t sure if they’ll proceed. The Senators are also looking at Emelin.”

    If you click on the “report” in the above blurb – that’s a pretty devastating assessment of Emelin by Button and that other pundit on Leafs Lunch!

    • I know George! I was shocked when they were that blunt about him. Button is usually classier than that.

      • Yeah Button was pretty harsh but at same time I don’t want to see Habs reacquire him.

      • And remember – that was on a daily Leafs-oriented program. That sort of blunt condemnation is probably among the reasons why most high-profile UFAs want no part of TO. Make the odd gaffe in Anaheim, LA or San Jose and it likely never gets mentioned outside the dressing room (by the coaches). Do it in TO for the Leafs and it’s fodder for at least 6 shows.

      • George isn’t that just common sense?? Obviously TO and Canada in general has more media coverage then California. Put two and two together

    • George not directed at you but on topic.

      If Emelin is so bad & Mtl did everything they could to shelter Emelin as Poulin claimed they did how did he manage to play on the 1st PK unit? Something just doesn’t jive there for me. You don’t shelter a player by putting them on your top penalty killing unit.

      He is also a hitting machine, his 241 hits last season have him ranked 5th in the NHL. Did he pull himself out of position to make all those hits? He was a plus player just. I’d like to hear Carey Price’s assessment of Emelin both now & next season with out him.

      Mtl better hope they can sign someone; ideally 2 & 1 had be a solid #3 at worst, as if they are icing their current D of Weber, Petry, Benn, Davidsson, Schlmeko & 1st year NHL Russian Dman Jerabek they are in serious trouble.

      • Oh yeah – I mean, I’m not a Habs fan, but it seems to me there were a LOT worse D around the league than Emelin – all factors considered – and that “assessment” by Button and that other clown was WAY overboard.

      • Nor I George being a Bruins fan no hated rival. Boston has been on the wrong end of to many playoff series losses but I have concerns about what Bergevin is doing.

      • Emelin put himself out of position a lot to try and make his Big hits. He’s back at reading plays. Rarely in good position. Not sure how he got his contract

      • I agree Steve and he seems to be getting worse not better, third pairing guy tho

      • I only see Mtl play 10 to 12 times a year & didn’t see many of their playoff games this season as I watched other series although Emelin was injured regardless.

        His #’s paint a far different picture. His TOI/GP was 4th in Mtl, 31 seconds less per game than Markov at #3 & 47 seconds less per game than Petry at #2. He played on Mtl’s #1 PK with Weber, no other Dman was even close to their SH TOI/GP. By ES minutes he was 2nd to Weber by 13 seconds per game. Those #’s paint a far different impression of the role he performed.

        If you look at his zone deployment he started the vast majority of his shifts in the Dzone.

        Are all these #’s wrong? As again they define a totally different story than what’s being implied here.

      • BigBear/Steve – I’m not suggesting Emelin would ever be confused with an Alzner or Methot – but from the times I’ve seen him play he’s nowhere near as bad as the picture painted by Button.

    • 6 months rule in effect here boys??? Can’t get a player you lost at the expansion draft….

      • No – that has since been clarified – LV CAN trade someone they drafted back to his original team – as long as it passes the “smell test” according to Colin Campbell. In other words, as long as it doesn’t appear to be a “sweetheart” deal in the yes of the NHL head office then it can go ahead.

        Which calls into question the whole Methjot fiasco because, after demanding two firsts from Dorion NOT to draft Methot, that pr*&k McPhee deals him to Dallas for a junior goalie who we won’t see for at least 5 years – if ever – and a 2nd round pick in 2020. There’s the “smell test” because no one will ever convince me that Dorion couldn’t have improved on that piddling return.

      • Wrong you are allowed to get a player back that was taking in the expansion draft

    • We’re talking about Craig Button here, who climbed the executive mountain of the NHL, only to find that he wasn’t cut out, so he was forced to step backwards to a scouting position for the Maple Leafs and helped JFJ come to the conclusion that Justin Pogge was a better goalie prospect than Rask, so JFJ trades Tuuka for Raycroft… Now, 14 years later, Button is the head of scouting for TSN. I’m sure he’s a cool guy, but the man has proven he isn’t the best at judging talent, that’s why he works for a sports network and not a hockey team.

      I wouldn’t put too much stock into some of the criticisms Button throws out. Half the time he’s playing the devil so advocate, the other time he’s just completely off his rocker.

      • I think he’s sucking too much air through those ginormous nostrils of his! Is it only me that sees you could land a 747 in his nose?

    • Doesn’t a team have to wait until Jan 1st to re acquire a player lost from expansion draft?

  2. I think Duchene will go to a team that hasn’t been mentioned, or mentioned once.

    • sakic is taking heat, for turning down hamonic and a 1st. you know this by dater coming to hos defense saying it was never offered. I know it was because hamonic was asked if colorado was acceptible to his needs and he said yes.

      this is just adrian dater coming to the defense of sakic as he usually does. talking to those in the know, the holdup was barzal. sakic wanted barzal and hamonic and snow refused to go there

      • Dater didn’t say there was no Hamonic deal. He only said that the first rounder wasn’t apart of the discussions.

    • I would love to see Matt Duchense in Pittsburgh… he will thrive there just like Phil Kessel does. It looks like we lost Trevor Daley about to sign with Detroit…..Nick Bonino has 10 teams after him looks like he is gone and the Pens are $19.5 million under the Cap. Matt Duchense can play wing or center. a third line of Matt Duchense Carl Hagelin and Scott Wilson no too shaby

  3. There is absolutely no reason for Toronto to acquire Duchene.

    • Agree Steven and I think most would as well that Toronto does not make sense.

      Mike any thoughts on which team or teams as possible destinations that have not been talked about in media? In a previous post someone comment they could see Florida as a good candidate. Thoughts?

      • pretty sure Florida is covered with Barkov, Trocek and Bjugstad at center. they need a top line RW, realistically Jagr is not a top line guy anymore. Their biggest needs is better wingers on their top 9

    • Steven, I agree but Duchene can play the wing, he played in the Canada Cup for Mike Babcock and Toronto may have the prospects and picks that would appeal to Joe Sakic.
      It’s not going to happen but I’d love to see Duchene flying up and down the ice with the Leafs’ kids.

  4. Has Shattenkirk priced himself out of the running for most teams?

    • I think Shattenkirk will get a big deal, and yes he has priced himself out of the running for most teams. But I am sure that was intent, so he doesn’t land on one of those teams that can’t afford him.

    • If he wants Money, term, top pair minutes, and to be close to home he is gonna sign in NJ. If he wants to win now he has to take less, not live as close to home,and no guarantee of top pair minutes. We shall see what he really wants soon enough.

    • Kevin Shattenkirk is a terrific power play specialist that’s it he is barely a top 4 d-man. He was exposed in the playoffs by Toronto and Pittsburgh…he wants $6-7 million a year good luck with that

  5. With respect to Botchford’s list of possible free agents for the Canucks to sign and Lyle’s comment in regards to filling a need; I ask this? What need could Yakupov possibly fill? Not that I am suggesting Botchford or Lyle are making a case for him either.

    • There is this lingering thought that, being a first overall pick, he HAS to be a player “on the verge” of breaking out. Kind of like Alex Daigle in 1993 (“I’m glad I got drafted first, because no one remembers no. 2.” – p.s. that was some guy named Chris Pronger, and Patrick Stefan in 1999 (64 goals and 188 points in 455 games).

      No. 2 behind Yakopov was D Ryan Murray who’s quietly developed into a solid blueliner for Columbus.

      • You mean the Murray that 9 of 10 Oiler scouts wanted to draft but got over ridden by top management?

      • LOL. yep, Chris. That Murray. And at a time when EVERYONE was thinking that the Oilers would finally use their # 1 pick to start shoring up their then weakest area – D. But MacTavish, petrified that he might be made to look foolish later should Yakopov blossom into a full-fledged star, went with the F when that was the LAST bloody thing he needed at the time. How he retained a job with the franchise is beyond me. He makes Joe Sakic look like a candidate for GM of the year.

      • Rumor has it was Lowe or even higher – Katz
        Which might explain why new mgt kept Mac T around.

    • I think as a rehabilitation project for the Sedins (playing wing on their line) might be good for Yakupov, and his speed might help the Sedins too. On a cheap contract, I’d take a chance on him.

      • Let’s have Goldobin play it that spot & pass on Yakupov.

    • Steven, You have to remember the spot the Canucks are in. They need to rebuild through the draft while still appearing to be trying so that fans show up. Yakupov could help them get a much higher draft pick if deployed properly 🙂

  6. This Shattenkirk situation smells eerily similar to the Kris Russel sitiutaion from a few years back. Russel also beilived he’d get a massive pay day and when it came time to dance, nobody wanted him. In my opinion Shattenkirk’s value went down after his stint in Washington. From someone who watches mostly eastern conference games I thought he was a stud as I never saw him in St.Louis. After seeing him in Washington I was convinced he wasn’t that great a Dman.

    • no chance Shattenkirk isn’t signed by the July 4th holiday

    • Shattenkirk is a 3rd pairing D-man and a power play specialist.
      He was third on the St Louis chart on the right behind Pieterangelo and Parayko, that really is where he fits in best.
      He might want to play 1st pairing minutes but thats not happening.

      A few years ago David Clarkson was the highest ranked free agent…..

      • Yep. And to think the other team whose offer he was considering at the time was Ottawa! Thanks TO for outbidding the Sens and to Clarkson’s dad who “dreamed” of seeing him in blue & white. Some dream that turned out to be – fore-shadowed by that meltdown in the first exhibition game of the season that earned him a silly suspension.

      • george you don’t know the whole story and you never do ottawa offered him more than tor but just like other good hockey players he did not want to go to ottawa

      • Aww bulls*^t. Take your “Senaturds” mentality to the Sun.

      • Now now that isn’t allowed on here and tie domi was 3 times the player that Chris Neil would ever be

    • Spot on Mikeyj…… spot on about Kevin Shattenkirk

  7. Alzner, Girardi, and Stone over Shattenkirk (based on cost) in my opinion. These teams in need better be on the ball or they will all gone by Sunday…. Why can’t Sakic pick up one of the first 3 for nothing and use Duchene for something else or even keep him.

    • Cause they won’t go to Colorado would be my guess. Sounds like alzner to the jets or habs, why the leafs wouldn’t go after alzner is hard to comprehend

  8. All due respect Lyle but I disagree with the vebage of silly to describe moving bozac to make room for duschene. Duschene is an upgrade and rolling three scoring lines is a solid strategy in today’s NHL. Leafs have the wingers to play that type of game too. Plus he is insurance with centers getting hurt and can play wing plus power play. Now leafs don’t have the d men to make it happen anyway but replacing bozac with duschene if possible seems smart not silly.

    • Bozak had 55 points last year. Duchene had 41 points last year.

      I do not understand the deification of Matt Duchene.

      I’ve heard his mediocrity excused because he was on a bad team. OK, but one of the reasons they were a bad team is because one of their supposed best and their highest paid player dogged it for most of the year.

      Give me Bozak any day.

      • Get real mg no one in their right mind would take bozak over duschene that’s just comical

      • If they like shiny things, maybe.

        41 points. $6 million. Dogged it more nights than he didn’t. Have fun.

      • 1 season doesn’t define a player. Colorado scored 166 goals for last year. That’s bad really bad, like elite level bad all time.

        Duchene’s career #’s.

        572 games played, 174 goals, 244 assists, 418 points. That’s .731 PPG. He will bounce back next season & hit his career averages.

        Duchene lead the league in faceoff winning % last season with 62.57% for players with 1000 or more draws.

        Colorado was a mess last season. They will be bad this season as well but score 30 to 40 more goals min next season breaking 200, the median average is 222.

      • I like Bozak but come on. You are using last year to compare them but Bozak had a career year last year with Marner driving the line while Duchene had his worst. Duchene is 5 years younger but has played 59 more games with 96 more points. He’s even got a better faceoff % over the last two years
        which is Bozak’s calling card on the Leafs.

        Does anyone think Lou is going to commit money or term to Bozak at 31 with him in the final year of his contract? If the Leafs like Marner and Nylander on the wing they would have a hole to fill if they let Bozak walk or trade him. Babcock likes to roll three lines and that’s what they had last year. Duchene would be a very good fit to replace Bozak on what is really the 2A line with Kadri centering the 2B line.

        That said I just don’t see getting a deal done without subtracting elements from the lineup we don’t want to lose. If Lou can pull one of his Jedi mind tricks and convince Sakic of the need to blow up and rebuild from the draft MAYBE then a 2018 1st, a prospect and Bozak to fill teh roster hole and balance salary might work.

      • As leafs fan, I can safely saw that all salaries/contracts being equal I’m taking Duchene with zero hesitation each time.
        However, Duchene’s salary and the expectation for new contract, plus where he fits into the line up makes this a no go for the Leafs.

        I’m surprised with these rumors, but where there is smoke……..i recall hearing about the kessel to Pittsburgh rumor and the Bishop to LA rumor and it made no sense to me at that time either

      • i agree with you MG Duchesne is overrated. also 1 BIG POINT for Canada at the Worlds

      • schultz was treated the same way on edm and needed a decent teama nd proper usage to become the d man he is now. I’ll take skill any day and duschene is far more skilled than bozak.

      • Schultz wasn’t treated the same. He got 1st line PP minutes right upon signing & continued to for 3 straight seasons putting up solid points it wasn’t till Mclellan was brought in his role changed.

        2012-13 Rookie season 2nd in Edm for PP TOI/GP. 13th in D scoring.
        2013-14. 1st. 39th in D scoring.
        2014-15. 1st. 50th in D scoring.
        2015-16. 10th.

        He got injured & never got back on track nor was given the chance to. I see Edm play live 25 times a year min & have had for decades.

      • let me claarify striker… I meant treated the same way through perception, in league and on web. his struggles on a down year brought him down to a 3rd round pick return. looking a duschene based on just past year is what teams would try to do to col. sakic is wisely making them offer based on potential and previous numbers looking at last year as an aberration. he’ll eventually have to meet in the middle with someone or keep duschene… either being a decent option

      • so comparing player on a bad team needing to be on a good team to get the respek he deserves.

      • Played on Canada’s 2nd best line in the WC of Hockey, their 4th line with O’Reilly & Thornton.

    • He means bozak isn’t landing duschene in a trade!

    • please have bozak go—it would make my day

      • If you are a Leafs fan then this is a strange statement. Bozak is well worth his contract and has been able to play with a variety of wingers. He is the closest thing to consistency the Leafs have had for the last 5 years.
        He’s not getting mistaken for a great player here, just that he is worth exactly what he is getting paid. I wouldn’t be surprised if the Leafs resign him

    • why would the leafs give up reilly in a deal for duchene, thats silly

  9. Calling the JVR Bozak MARNER line the third line is stupid! Replace Bozak with Duchene and you’ll have one of the best 1st lines in all of hockey and a far better line than the Matthews line. Remember prior to contracting Mono, Marner out produced Matthews in points by a large margin. Mono for the last two and a half months of the season cost Marner the Calder.

    The leafs have a 2 year window before their cap space disappears, exactly Duchene’s contract. Acquiring defensmen is too expensive so the Leafs might as well just get the best player available.

    As for the Avs by insisting on a defensemen Sakic is artificially constraining the type and quality of the overall return he can get from Duchene. He is better off taking the best package available. It’s not like all the Avs need is one defensemen and their back in contention.

    I can see this rumor as being far more plausible then most.

    • If hamonic couldn’t get duschene the leafs don’t have anything to give up to get him. Third liners like brown and the c defensive prospects aren’t gonna land you duschene

      • Does that make Matthew’s line with Hyman & Brown the 3rd line? His primary linemates for most of last season. Cause 20 goals & 36 points is a pretty solid rookie season.

        Their combined 70 goals would suggest they were Tor’s #1 line. If we need to rank them. Really Tor iced 3 balanced scoring lines.

        But to call the rookie Brown a 3rd liner seems un just. Great 2 way player. He & Hyman formed a solid penalty killing duo.

        Unfortunately for Brown he can’t garner any reasonable PP time. Only 2 of his 20 goals came on the PP making him a very high end ES scorer.

      • lol, we will see bigbear

    • The only reason Duchene is available is specifically for a top young D. Why don’t people read the direct quotes from Sakic the past year. Duchene isn’t being traded off to get the best possible package. It’s a top young D or nothing. The rest of any return has never been mentioned in any direct qoute from Sakic, but he says over and over again that the return must have a Top Young Defenseman coming back and in his last interview with BSN Denver he said again, that if no Top Young D are in the return that Duchene will start the season with Colorado.

      And Duchene hasn’t been traded because Sakic is holding out for the moon. Joe is not being coy, posturing, or playing the field. He has to have that specific piece for Duchene.

  10. What do other Penguins fans think DP value is, and do most agree that the Penguins management has miss managed him?? I know 3-4 years ago he came into camp not looking great but everyone knows defensemen take longer to find there game. After his junior career was over they should of just left him down in WBS instead of all the call ups just to sit and watch. So would you be nurvous moving maatta for Duchene then giving DP a real honest attempt in the top 6 just because he might have a stinker of a game you don’t scratch him you let him figure it out

    • Pouliot has no value because he sucks and doesn’t care. He never did. Other than his draft spot, what indicates he’ll be good in any way?

      Unless they trade Kessel, Matt Duchene is the absolute last thing the Penguins need.

      And the Pens are not trading Maatta. He has far more value to them than anything they’d get for him.

    • I still believe in Pouliot and think he is super talented. He has the best breakout pass of any dman in the Pens organization and has one of the best shots. This narrative that he doesn’t care is total BS and ignorance. If anything he cares too much. His confidence is shattered and he’s terrified of making any mistakes. If he was given the same slack Maatta got he would be a very different player today. Other than his draft spot he was CHL dman of the year and put up good enough numbers in the AHL to get an allstar nod his rookie season. He is exactly in the same position Shultz was when he left Edmonton. Remember TSN called Shultz the worst player in the NHL and look at him now. If it was up to me I would tell Pouliot that the team believes in him and he’s going to be 3LD no matter what and he gets to QB the second PP. Without constantly having to look over his shoulder I think he will be a different player. And it sounds like Rutherford feels the same way.

      • Hahahaha.

        That’s a stretch. Not even remotely comparable.

        Schultz had played 248 NHL games putting up 28 goals & 101 points when he left Edm.

        Pouliot 67 games played 2 goals & 14 points.

        It’s still to early to write Pouliot off but it’s been 5 years since he was drafted. He should be an NHL regular by now. He now has to clear waivers to be sent down. He stays in Pit or someone will claim him if they try to sneak him thru waivers.

        He’s still a prospect but fast becoming a suspect.

      • I used to watch Pouliot when he was in the WHL. NHLN would show games on Friday nights sometimes. He’d defend a two on one by just wiggling his stick and not even look at the puck. It was as if playing defense was a bother to him. I thought he was lazy then.

        Then he shows up to camp fat.

        He was interviewed the other day about what he needs to work on the most…his answer: “Compete level”. If you have to work on it, you are going to lose to the players who just have it.

        The only reason I wouldn’t give up on him is because he has zero trade value and they have nothing else at D in the AHL. They might as well keep trying and hoping it clicks for him.

      • his confidence is shattered? oh boo hoo. he has been given chances for three separate head coaches and failed each time. Hopefully he gets it together and becomes moderately valuable but I’m not holding my breathe. If rutherford and sully had any and I mean ANY confidence in him either hainsey or streit are not pens last year.

    • pens didnt misuse him just like they didnt misuse despres. DP failed to impress three different nhl coaches.

      • If Schultz could turn his career around after being dealt to Pittsburgh from Edmonton, maybe Derrick could get untracked by being dealt to Edmonton. They even have some uniforms with his name on the back after waiving Benoit Pouliot (no relation) for purposes of buying him out. Hell, maybe Pitt can give Benoit a shot. LOL

      • Hahahaha. Their was a rumor Pit tried to trade Pouliot last season but there were no takers.

      • George, that is some funny sh**.
        Never say never, somebody will take Benoit for cheap he is an NHL player.
        Speaking of Oil, now that they dumped salary, any guesses on who they go after on Saturday? They could use depth D and a scoring winger.
        Justin Williams? Marleau?

    • maatta would be an appropriate piece to include in a trade for duschene with another asset going to col as well… problem is pens cant move maatta as they need d… and while duschene would be phenomenal on pens he is really a superfluous piece. if col took a deal of pouliot, sprong, 1st rounder, hags (for salary sake) id do it in a heart beat. doubt they dont get a better offer from someone else though.

      • I don’t trade Maatta for Duchene straight up, even the good Duchene not last years version. Maatta will be 23 when next season starts & already has 220 NHL regular season games under his belt & 56 playoff games. A future #2 with a great contract.

      • You watch a lot more overall hockey than me Striker but you dont watch the pens as much. Maatta has great potential but is also injury prone, prone to bad passes, giveaways, and afraid to battle in the corners. and this is from a huge Maatta fan. his contract is great for a number 2 and ok for a number 4… he isnt the fleetest of foot. if pens had a plan to replace him in another deal for a top 4 blue liner than I would have no problem with them moving on from him… high reward but high risk with him.

      • Other than Boston who’s games I watch virtually all of but rarely live the only teams I watch more than Cal, Edm & Dal is Pit. Fun to watch play.

        You mean at 22 he hasn’t fully developed nor yet has a full grasp of the NHL game? That’s shocking. Ha-ha! Yes he has had injury problems & that’s certainly cause for concern. Lets see what he is at 25 or 26 then thru his peak years of 28 to 32.

      • I said I’m a fan striker but there are some glaring red flags for him. Pens can’t afford to move him though. Back when jets wanted a d man for trouba I’d have considered moving maatta as the main piece in that deal. I’m quite happy with pens keeping maatta but he’s not as invaluable as you imply. Maatta for duschene is about right as far as equal value. Just not worth it to pens with no d depth to back the move up… some kinda Barrie duschene deal perhaps?

    • No i would not be nervous moving Oli Matta. Look Oli is solid but to get something good you need to give up something good. The Pens still have Kris Letang (wild card injuries) Brian Dumolin, Justin Schutlz,Ian Cole, Chad Rudewhel who played well in the bottom pairing so you will need to add a depth dman for Matt Duchense thats worth it. i would add two depth d-man insurance for Kris Letang like this year we added Ron Hainsey and Strait.

  11. NY Rangers are weak at center, neither Zibenajad nor Hayes are #1 centers. I bet they sign either Thornton or Marleau to replace Stepan. And either Bonino or B.Boyle for their 3rd line

    • Zibanejad; 20 to 25 goals, 55 to 60 points, will be NYR’s #1 C. Hayes; still needs 2 more years to fully develoedp, their #2, the question is who is their #3? UFA, trade or Miller?

      • Miller won’t be playing center in NY. Again, that experiment went horribly wrong last year. I don’t see him anywhere but wing!

      • Ideally I agree with you but 2 centers are gone, Stepan & Lindberg. At least 1 needs to be acquired potentially 2.

      • The other day you stated he hasn’t played center in the NHL? He not a solution at center! Av knows this , the casual fan knows this! He won’t be a 3rd line center! Or 4th.

  12. >>>The Wings and Canucks could get some grief from their fans over potentially pursuing one or two veterans via free agency when they’re supposed to be rebuilding.

    If you go full tank, it hampers the development of your other players. Getting a mentor veteran to some of your young talent is not always a bad plan: Jagr has had a positive effect on Claude Giroux and on Barkov. I agree with you that the fans would grieve; I think they need to understand the situation better, though.

    As for Shattenkirk, half of NJ’s vocal online fan base want absolutely nothing to do with him… the most I’d sign him is 4.5/y and he’d be a 2nd pairing who might be able to slot at 1st pairing or on the PP. He’ll get paid closer to 7 and long term, and that contract will be just as disastrous as Phaneuf’s albatross, which already cost Ottawa one of their best defensemen. I don’t want him at his price tag or anywhere near it; he had his best season three years ago, and has been playing like a 3rd pairing ever since, barely keeping afloat in St. Louis.

    If I had a wishlist: NOT signing Shattenkirk would be atop it.

  13. Yea Lyle that would be silly playing with Marner and JVR lol

    • You’re assuming Marner and JVR will be skating on the third line next season. Last season’s lineup may not be similar to next season’s. Anyway, it’s a moot point. The Leafs lack the return necessary to pry Duchene away from the Avs. They’re set down the middle next season with their current setup. Their biggest need now is to bolster their defense.

      • I think all knowledgeable Leafs fan here agree with you Lyle.
        If there is a crazy deal on forward without sacrificing our D then the Leafs should do it, Duchene is NOT that sort of deal.

  14. Duchene for Hamonic is a straight up one to one trade.
    The Av’s need Hamonic more than Duchene. If the Av’s want to get better
    defensively trade the overrated Eric Johnson…first round talent
    yeah right. Where is Pierre Lacroix, sigh.

    • Hamonic plays RD correct? Avs strength and depth are on the right side they need LD and this could be factoring into viable trade options

      • Colorado needs any D help they can get. There is certainly a trend forming where teams want a RH & LH D playing together, must be the new faster game. That said not all teams are buying in. Pietro & Bou play togetherin StL both LH. Skjei & Smith played together upon his acquisition & into the playoffs both LD.

    • You sir, are talking out your rump. Or better yet, you bumped your head.

      • That was directed at kaseynhl.

  15. Duchene has been linked to Ottawa, I wonder if there is a deal there involving Phaneuf + prospect + 1st rounder or something along those lines.

    • Just a hunch – but I would suspect Colorado is one of those places on Dion’s “no-go” list – and I can’t see him waiving it to go there in any deal. Besides, Dorion has said bluntly that any trade involving Phaneuf is now off the table.

      • Similar to how MB postured when asked about SUbban last year?

      • Good point Taz. Let’s file the whole thing under “You Never Know.”

      • I should know better because, 10 minutes after saying flatly in here that there was NO WAY Toronto and Ottawa would conclude a deal involving Phaneuf – someone (BigBear I think) came in here and said “it just happened.” Talk about being floored.

  16. I agree with most here that Shattenkirk is going to be interesting. Top teams will struggle to afford him and those that have the cap space aren’t usually close to competing. I was never sure how a power play specialist 2nd or 3rd pairing guy was going to be worth 7 per as seemed to be suggested.

    • Only because there are desperate GMs out there who need to save their jobs by making a splash. They can spin to show how this is the missing piece and buy themselves time.
      This is just an inflated version of Cody Franson. He was seeking 5 Mil on a multi year deal and got 3.3 for 2 years

  17. Hartnell bought out by CLB to free up cap , could a Ryan Murray, Sonny Milano for Duchene deal be brewing ?

    • That gives them $12,887,025 in cap space with 19 players signed, and needing to decided who to bring back from among UFAs Gagner, Korpikoski and Quincey and RFAs Anderson and Wennberg. With the combined $3,688.333 that would accompany Milano and Murray to Colorado, they could easily absorb Duchene’s $6 mil cap hit.

      Would Sakic be happy with that duo (pretty good D-man in Murray) or would he then demand a pick as well? Given his stance so far, it wouldn’t surprise me.

  18. “However, the longer this drags out, the fewer options potentially available for Sakic.”

    I disagree. The market only temporarily thins. Given a little time and patience, the market grows thirsty again. As I see it, the are 5 main sporting seasons in the market after the Draft:

    2)Before training camp in Aug-Sept.

    3)During training camp-till NHL Season begins.

    4)Oct-Nov(when teams seasons begin to go awry)

    5)After the All-Star game-Trade Deadline.

    Suitors for Matt Duchene may or may not be thinking, but I believe that there isn’t one team who wouldn’t want him. And the longer he stays out their and GM’s have enough time to get comfortable with the price, the more likelihood of Sakic getting what he needs.

    Also the longer he is on the market the greater the possibility the dark horse teams realize they may have an opportunity here when they thought he was out of reach.
    Sakic isn’t shopping for the biggest bag of goodies he can find. The sticking price has always been a top young defensemen. But don’t blame him for not getting a deal done. Every team in the NHL is looking for pretty much the same D. And now everyone is beginning to see what Joe has already known… The fishing stinks and no bait seems to be working right now.

    We might just have to wait for a Duchene trade till the middle of next season when GM’s value scoring more than defense. But, maybe by then Colorado doesn’t feel like they need to trade Duchene at all.
    You know they all want him, sometimes you just have to wait until all of the fishy food has been gone for awhile. And then when they grow hungry again after the first thaw, throw your sparkly lure out there before the other fisherman come. Because the biggest trout is always the hungriest trout, you’re more likely to catch a record breaker at first thaw. And they strike on impulse first when they are that hungry.

    • The only problem, Duchene has already had a full year of this cycle and his asking price has already dropped. The ask was a top defenseman, a 1st rounder and an A prospect and now they will be lucky to get a #3 dman and a first/second.

      In your tiers:
      Step 1 is done
      Step 2 and 3 are basically the same and the highest possibility
      Step 4: very hard to move 6 million at that stage so his value is going to be low
      Step 5: again salary is an issue and a team competing for the playoffs isn’t giving up a #1/#2 dman.

      dangerous game that Colorado is playing right now, they better hope they move him before the season starts

      • Everyone claims that Duchene is a diminishing value. How? Why? Other than term on his contract there are no real devaluing factors at work here. He’s 26, not broken, skills not diminishing… He’ s entering his prime years. And I think most people know that there is nothing stopping Duchene from excelling next year. All this “He’s damaged goods” or he’s in decline” is childish irritability by restless hockey fans. Hockey fans go through this all the time. When a decent player hits the rumor mill the wish lists cram the blog sites, always with a few sourer’s. And the longer that player hogs up the headlines the newness begins to wear off and the shininess dulls. Then fans begin to lash out at the player and the team in angry posts because of fan frustration and the wish lists being unfulfilled. And the fans whos teams aren’t rumored to be in on that player and the fans who don’t want that player get irritated that there are no rumors for their team and the players they want. It’s the same sob story with wasted time and wasted breath.

    • Streamfisher, I think most GM’s have the ability to reason unlike the average trout. And the key words used in the quote are “potentially available”. The reason there is potential is as time goes by teams are filling there rosters by trade prior to, or at the draft and the upcoming UFA season. Teams like MTL need a center, and if they don’t have what Sakic says he wants, they will try and sign one on Saturday if they didn’t get one at or before the draft. Or trade a great D asset to TB for Druin.
      The market for Duchene simply shrinks as the teams no longer have the spot, cap space or assets to make the deal. That does not mean MTL gets what they want for a UFA, and are now feeling desperate and give Sakic a bounty. Hence the word potential. Just simply fewer potential customers with the money and assets to spend.

      • “Streamfisher, I think most GM’s have the ability to reason unlike the average trout”

        Past history over the years gives evidence to the contrary.
        Duchene is a player of good value to most teams. Meaning if they could add him the would like to. He is an upgrade for a lot of teams. When Pittsburgh fans argue with other Pittsburgh fans arguing for his addition to their third line, adding to an embarrassment of riches, that shows a perception of his value to the last team that “needs” him. Duchene value has already been set through his previous years in the NHL, with a small anomaly last year that sounds as if GM’s aren’t scared away by that. The desire to have matt Duchene on their team hasn’t changed. What changes is the ability to add him. Teams will undoubtedly fill up their rosters with lesser talent July1 and the window to move Duchene will temporarily shrink and most teams will have to move on for the time being. But, the next step is on Duchene to rise to form next season, which I think he will, then sometime during next season when playoff hopefuls inevitably start to nose dive The window will begin to open back up and the team who craves scoring or an extra edge will do what they can to add pieces. And Duchene will be a tempting target again. Other than Tavares rumors, Duchene will most likely be the best option. And he is a worthy player. Nobody has to “settle” for Duchene.
        But, the risk other GM’s run is Sakic and Duchene deciding to come off the market.

        Any real hockey fan knows interest in good players never truly wanes. There are GM’s that will miss the boat this summer on him that will pray that they have time to circle back to him before he’s gone. Later this summer, during the season? They will not take their eye off him just because they had to fill their roster in early July.

  19. With Smith signed and now need depth I think NYR should called up the 2 former Avs Girgorenko and Zadarov to fill out the bottom half of the roster while their prospects get time to grow. Grigorenko can be the 4th line center and work on his consistency and Zadarov can be the bottom the #6 and rotate with Klein and Holden.

    • Zadorov isn’t going any where. He was the key piece acquired in the O’Reilly trade. A stud in the making, 4 years from being fully developed. Has been weened in very slowly yet to play a full season in a full time role.

      This is a monster of a Dman at 6’5″ 230 lbs. Has just got his feet wet. Watch this beast develop over the next 3 to 4 years. Just at the age where most Dman even make it to the NHL as full time players 22.

      • they never qualified him…he is a UFA….think he sticks with the AVS? or goes to a playoff caliber team cheaper so we can play better?

      • Your thinking about Grigorenko not Zadorov.

      • the problem there is that zads has a problem with the coaching staff, he doesnt like being picked on and he feels Bednar is unnecessarily critical of him. there have even been rumors of his considering going to the KHL. YOUNGER PLAYERS NEED TO DEVELOP A TOUGH SKIN AND ACCEPT COACHING. that the rumors exist of his going back is a sigh that he may not be as coachable as youd like

    • Klein is retiring! He will not be in Ny. Since I’m not exactly sure what NY is doing at the moment, maybe they look nowhere but within. Graves, Day, Deangelo should be getting serious consideration. Side note: I think the Shattenkirk to Ny thing is all but dead at this point. And honestly, I could not be happier!

      • Which oraface did you pull that little Zadorov tidbit from there Bill? I call bs on that one. You totally fabricated that. There has been nothing of the sort reported by anyone in the know. I’m beginning to think a lot you around here just like to stir the pot to acquire unhappy company. Bill you didn’t even try to twist words. That is lazy character assassination of my Avs

    • As far as center help, Boyle and Moore should be getting calls from Gorton.

  20. Word is Bonino has priced himself out of the Pen’s reach.

    If so, I hope the Leafs do (inexplicably) get Duchene. Be glad to take Bozak off their hands.

    • Well, he has his 2 cups – now he’s looking for long-term security and probably doesn’t care where that might land him.

  21. I am a pens fan but in all honesty I agree with MG on the basis that I don’t think trading for Duchene is a good idea, not only for Toronto, but Pittsburgh as well

    Duchene is an extremely skilled player, but the assets to get him for the chance of him leaving in 2 years isn’t worth it

    • Who is torontos top 6 right now ? And pairings that will be any where close to an improvement over last season ? Lou has to be adding a couple pieces ? Even if not huge ? Good defenders . Targets ?