NHL Rumor Mill – July 22, 2017

by | Jul 22, 2017 | Rumors | 40 comments

Calgary Flames winger Johnny Gaudreau seems receptive to playing for the Philadelphia Flyers one day.

Latest on Johnny Gaudreau plus updates on the Detroit Red Wings and Arizona Coyotes in your NHL rumor mill. 

CALGARY SUN: Wes Gilbertson reports Flames left wing Johnny Gaudreau told a Philadelphia sports radio station Friday that “it would be sweet” to one day play for the Philadelphia Flyers.

Gaudreau, a native of Carneys Point, New Jersey, grew up cheering for the Flyers. However, he was quick to praise the Flames, their fans and the city of Calgary. The 23-year-old has five years remaining on his current contract with the Flames. 

SPECTOR’S NOTE: This isn’t a trade rumor and it’s obvious that Gaudreau was simply prompted into that response by the interviewer. Still, it could get some folks musing about him getting dealt one day to the Flyers or joining them as a free agent should things go sour with the Flames.

However, a lot can happen over the next five years. Gaudreau could be reluctant to leave Calgary, especially if the Flames become a Cup contenders over that period. The Flyers could develop their own young scoring winger and not have a need for Gaudreau. Or maybe he ends up playing for someone other than the Flames or Flyers.

It’s worth recalling how Bobby Ryan was once thought to be headed to the Flyers as a free agent. He wound up re-signing with the Ottawa Senators. 

NBC SPORTS: James O’Brien notes the Detroit Red Wings re-signing winger Tomas Tatar leaves them with little salary cap space for next season even with all-but-retired Johan Franzen going on LTIR. They still have young forward Andreas Athanasiou to re-sign.

One option to shed salary, as suggested by Wings blog Winging It In Motown, could be buying out defenseman Jonathan Ericsson. O’Brien also speculates over other cost-cutting moves, such as trading veteran blueliner Mike Green or swapping one bad contract for another less expensive one. 

SPECTOR’S NOTE: I’ve summarize O’Briens report but it worth reading his take on the Wings cap situation in its entirety. Bottom line is they’re hampered by some bad contracts. Creating cap room for Athanasiou could cost them a decent player if they’re unable to find another means to free up some dollars. 

ARIZONA SPORTS: Craig Morgan reports Arizona Coyotes GM John Chayka isn’t ruling out another offseason trade. “I’m still trying to get one more thing done,” he said. “We’ll see.” Morgan said the Coyotes would like a better balance between right and left shots at forward and on the blueline. 

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Earlier this week, Ottawa Senators GM Pierre Dorion said he was talking to another team about a possible trade. Maybe he was referring to Chayka? Discuss!



  1. Ken Holland has put the Red Wings in salary cap hell. Im guessing Detroits has the worst cap situation in the league. Untradeable goalies, old old old defence and not much depth up front. Buyouts may be the only answer. Green? Howard? Eriksson? Going to be a tough year in the Motor City.

    I would think every team in the NHL would like to have Gaudreau play for them. Flyers are going to have to wait a while to see how interested he really is.

    • You wonder Holland thought he had to grossly overpay players to stay in Detroit ?

    • Wings fans probably wouldn’t like it, but a Mike Green for Ben Lovejoy deal might work. It saves the Wings $3.33M and gives the Devils the PP QB and offensive dman they so need

      • Do you see Green accepting a trade to NJ? He has a full NTC & I’d say those chances are virtually non existent. He may except a trade to some other teams but NJ, very unlikely.

      • That was a REAL bad signing to begin. Why sign a player who clearly is on the way down to anything more than a 1 year deal. Especially a player like Green who is so questionable in his own end.

      • Who would want to stay in Detroit with the mess they have is beyond me. Any other team is a better option. Idc about a new arena & see the Dead Wings 2.0 being a lousy team for years to come.

    • Salary Cap situation similar to other teams. Not great, but not “hell”. Franzen will finish his career/contract on LTIR. Glendenning (ankle/foot) and Sproul (knee) start season on LTIR, when they are ready, Kronwall may end up there. Green/Mrazek (10M) contracts done after 2017/2018, Howard/Franzen/Nyquist (14M) after 2019. Biggest issue is the pure hatred Bettman threw at Detroit by not grandfathering contracts signed prior to last CBA.

  2. Regarding your Chayka-Dorion trade talk possibility, Lyle, with Dzingel’s signing the Sens now have 21 players signed with $5,812,500 left in cap space (not counting Hammond and his $1.350,000 cap hit and who is sure to be bought out). Chabot will almost surely bring that to 22, with outside chances to be the 23rd for Nick Paul or Ben Harpur.

    There is a potential log-jam at C and/or on the wings when you consider natural positions when you factor in guys like Dzingel, White, Pyatt, Burrows, Paul and Thompson, so maybe there is some smoke there. Could Dzingel, now that he’s under contract for 2 years, be part of a deal along with another body? But for what?

    • There is certainly some depth in many position on the ottawa line-up but still the 2nd LW position is one I would consider weak. Of course it could be argued that it. Pups vw successfully filed internally by either mac or Dzingel but those are questions marks. Securing a top LW scorer would go a long way into helping the sens position themselves as serious contenders. I can understand their reluctance to want ti add a quality Dman with so many bodies scratching for those spots but that’s a move that could happen mid season as some of those youth augment their stock by playing well and become more valuable trade pieces.

  3. I’m fairly certain if Arz is talking trade with anyone it’s to acquire a better quality top 4 Dman, ideally a RH 1 to push Schenn to the 3rd pairing..

    The roster is loaded with good young forwards but Clendening or Connaughton are currently their #6 & 7 D.

    Here’s what I have currently but you be the judge.

    Domi, Stepan, Keller; C.
    Perlini, Dvorak; L, Duclair.
    Martinook, Strome, Rieder.
    Crouse, Cousins, Richardson; C.
    Spare McGinn.

    OEL, Haljarsson; LH.
    Goligoski, Schenn.
    Chychurn, Clendening.

    They still have several solid young players especially at forward in Fisher & Merkley.

    I don’t see Ott having a top 4 RH Dman to send Arz for 1 of their extra forwards & ?

    • If that’s what they were talking about, no … obviously. But who the hell knows for sure these days after some of the off-the-wall deals made.

      • The one uncertainty in the Ottawa camp is MacArthur, slotted to be the # 2 LW, who has been hinting at retirement following lingering neck problems. If he does, I don’t think Dzingel is ready for prime-time, so maybe Dorion is feeling around to see what might be available at that position – and for how much!

      • Personally i think ottawa is shopping phaneuf and ryan to move out some money. But heck im just guessing

    • That is looking like a good young and exciting roster that can sell tickets. All I can say is that I am looking forward to watching this team in hopes that Tocchet has them playing a more offensive style of hockey. In the passed it was really frustrating watching the Tippet team just choke the life out of the game.

      • Yes it was.

    • If Arz can find a decent #4 Dman, ideally a RH 1 or a LH 1 that is comfortable on his offside to push Schenn to the 3rd pairing, this team is going to surprise people next season.

      Good enough to be a playoff team? I wouldn’t think so but significantly better than we have seen in some time & the future looks very bright. They have buckets of cap space should they ever wish to spend it & I assume someone will pay them to dump a salary on them before the season starts.

  4. Here’s what I have for Ottawa at present. By no means are these what necessarily will be iced just educated guesses based on what we know today factoring players waiver rights.

    Smith, Turris, Stone.
    Hoffman, Brassard, Ryan.
    MacArthur?, Pageau, Burrows.
    Pyatt, Thompson, Dzingel.

    Cleason, Karlsson.
    Phaneuf, Ceci.
    Chabot, Wideman.

    Is MacArthur going to be able to play? Is Wideman the ideal partner for Chabot? I don’t have all rosters at 23 men currently their are holes in many as you would expect in July.

    I assume White will start the year in Ott filling for Brassard till he returns from injury. If Ben Harpur can’t play regularly in the NHL he’s better served to play huge minuets in the AHL until a full time roster spot opens up.

    Players can also just steal jobs in camp coming out of no where to some extent. Larkin was the 1st Red Wing Rookie to make the Wings as a 19 year old in 25 years, their last being Lidstrom so a player like Brown could steal someone’s job or perhaps he plays LW depending upon MacArthur’s condition.

    Pure speculation.

    • It’s possible. Would Ott take a player like McGinn if Arz ate 1/2 his salary? He’s certainly a Boucher type player & the cost to acquire would be virtually free.

      Dzingel could slide into that slot or Brown as I speculated. Their appears to be a hole their. I think Smith is the most likely to fill a LW role of the top line at least initially. Even if MacArthur tries to play which I think is crazy he’s 1 solid hit away from gone yet again. Most unfortunate. He has been a solid player for Ottawa. His contribution in their run to the conference final was significant.

      • Sorry George meant to post that to your thread above. These dam old eyes.

      • That’s 2 bad their’s, there’s, they re’s in 1 sentence. Ha-ha! Sorry gentlemen, spelling & or grammar were my worst. I can’t remember names but #’s just stay with me for some reason. I see people I went to school with for years occasionally but can’t remember their names but I can remember my phone #’s, addresses & postal codes for every where I have lived since about 8.

      • Eat 1/2 his contract & virtually get for free.
        Idk how u arrive at that.

    • Except there’s NO way Smith moves up to the top line at LW. That’s Hoffman – with a “healthy” MacArthur slotted in at # 2. It’s either that or retirement for him as no team – especially Ottawa – is going to fork over $4,650,000 for a 3rd line winger.
      Smith will skate alongside Pageau and, if he isn’t dealt, Dzingel. Burrows will be on the 4th line with plenty of opportunity to move up and down the line-up as the season wears on and injuries occur.

      • I don’t disagree George, there is a hole there & it’s been in place since MacArthur originally went down. The role keeps getting filled by Smith who should play LW with Pageau.

        I don’t see Burrows as a 4th liner yet based on the current roster make up but the season is still a long way off & again Brown could force his way onto this roster as a winger either on the R or L side. No room at C even with Brassard gone to start the season, that’s White’s job to lose, although Pageau may kind of play as the #2 & White the #3 at least by TOI/GP & defensive zone starts, even though White lines up as the #2 in offensive zone starts.

      • Sorry striker but Brown isn’t even close to making the NHL. Not a chance.

    • Macarthur is playing. What a weird thing to question. He is reported to be very healthy.

      Weather he remains that way is the question

      • EVERY player face the possibility of a long-term injury every time he skates onto the ice. The difference is, with MacArthur the odds go up astronomically based upon his history.

  5. In summary, Detroit will spend the next 4 seasons in cap hell. It’s hard to believe the guy who created this mess is still in charge.

    • Totally agree. All the “questionable” signings by the Wings in the last years….
      Nielsen at 5.25(will be 38 when his contract ends), Abdelkader at 4.25(will be 36), overpaying Green…..

      • I didn’t like Helm’s contract either especially the term. Great skater, tons of heart just no hands.

    • Other than Lidstrom Datsyuk Zetterberg when cup contenders nobody worth speaking of wants to go to Detroit. Hardly a destination point. Cap hell with old anchors & a piss poor prospect pool.

  6. Gaudreau’s words remind me about Dree Doughty’s interview where he said that every kid from Toronto wants to play for the Leafs.

    Lyle is it possible this is becoming kind of a strategy for players to keep their franchises on their toes when handling their stars? Players try to generate rumours and doubt so they would get better treatment, bigger dollars or something else.

    • Hi, Rambo. While this musing about one day playing for their hometown club or favorite team growing up, I think this was simply a case of Gaudreau giving an answer to a hypothetical question. I don’t see this as anything Machiavellian on his part. Most players usually give that stock answer of “Yes, it would be nice to play for the team I cheered for as a kid”, and perhaps some genuinely feel that way, but few of them rarely follow through.

  7. IF AZ is looking for another top 4 D and additional forward to balance out left shooting and right shooting sides….would Holland offer up Ericsson and Abdelkader and a 1st rd pick for Duclair and Schenn ?

    Ericsson is clearly better than Schenn but DET needs cap space and it rounds out ARZ top 4 pairing. Abdelkader can play anywhere in the top 9 ( can score, PK , fast and feisty with good leadership for their young team) but again DET needs cap space and I doubt ARIZONA wants Frans Nielsen. The 1st is well to beg Arizona to make something happen.

    • Arz doesn’t need another winger. Is Eriksson better than Schenn? Schenn is there to play a nasty game, he is an elite level hitter & solid shot blocker. Someone has to perform that role, he’s 6 years younger & his cap hit 3 million less for 2 less years. Schenn was 2nd in the league for hits by Dman & top 50 in blocked shots. Apples & Oranges.

      Arz has Dman with Eriksson’s skill set & more, OEL, Goligoski, Hjalmarsson & the kid Chychurn, & they need a RH Dman not a left as only Schenn & Clendening; purely injury insurance, are RH.

      Abdelkader is everything you say he is a great player, just being paid about a mil 5 to much & being allowed to play higher in the line up than his offensive skills warrant. Martinook, Reider, Crouse & McGinn all bring similiar skills to the table.

  8. Ive only heard the Goudreau comment here but it seems to be the generic politically correct response players give.

    He isnt going to say philly is crap or he doesnt ever want to play there.

    Like the norm the player says good things about the possibility of playing elsewhere then with the next breath praise his current team.

    Even when demanding a trade this is the norm. I think we should take norhing at all from this comment.

    Its like Tavares and toronto. Tavares will never trash the leafs in discussion of possibly playing for them and he will always praise the Isle while he speaks kindly of the rival team.

    • That’s what the age of rampant “political correctness” had brought to the world – one’s true feelings are seldom – if ever – revealed. On any subject. Which is why so-called “journalists” probe and pike – whether in sports, entertainment or politics – looking for a comment they can then take out of context to form the basis of an article or commentary.

      It’s what Marshall McLuhan warned about in predicting the advent of the internet with his “global village” and famous observation that “the medium is the message” which signifies that the WAY a message is delivered is as important as the message itself. He did all this before his death in 1980 – a decade before the internet – and now we’re deluged with “fake news” all over the spectrum.

      • Perhaps. Or it could be the players are smart enough not to burn a bridge before crossing it.

        They may very well by no control of their own end yp playing for a team they were previously asked to speculate on.

        Trashing that team could alienate the fan base before your even on the roster and eliminate a source of employment as your career winds down or if your not a star a general every day option youd wish to keep open.

      • You just provided a definition for “political correctness” – i.e., avoid saying what you REALLY think so as not to upset any apple carts. Jeremy Roeneke, for one, never worried about revealing his true feelings on anything when asked.

  9. One way the wings could free up cap space is to trade players for draft picks . This enables lower cost Grand Rapids veterans to “get their chance” and wings can load up for next couple drafts.

  10. The Wings made the playoffs 25 years straight so it was expected at some point the late draft picks and signing free agents would catch up with them. Give Holland a year or two to straighten this out. He earned that for the years he kept them competitive.

    By the way I am a Leaf fan and would have took the last ten years over the Leafs last ten years but I am looking forward to the next ten.