NHL Rumor Mill – October 4, 2017

by | Oct 4, 2017 | Rumors | 47 comments

Updates on Troy Brouwer and Andreas Athanasiou plus the latest Senators speculation in your NHL rumor mill.

NEWS 1130’s Rick Dhaliwal took to Twitter on Monday to report hearing “possible Troy Brouwer trade out of Calgary. Not confirmed, just something heard.”

SPECTOR’S NOTE: The 32-year-old carries a $4.5 million annual cap hit through 2019-20 and a full no-trade clause for this season. I’m not doubting Dhaliwal’s sources on this but moving Brouwer won’t be easy. The Flames could end up absorbing part of that cap hit to facilitate a trade.

It’ll be interesting to see if anything comes of this rumor. Internet chatter suggested Brouwer was heading to Vancouver or back to St. Louis. The Blues are riddled by injuries but I don’t think general manager Doug Armstrong is keen to bring Brouwer back. I don’t see him as a fit with the rebuilding Canucks. 

NBC SPORTS: Joey Alfieri reports Ottawa Senators general manager Pierre Dorion telling Ottawa’s TSN 1200 yesterday he was “51 percent sure” he wouldn’t be able to make a move that day, but if he did it would be for a forward. “When asked if he’d be looking for a “filler” type of forward or “somebody more high-end,” Dorion said “it could be either-or”.” Alfieri notes recent trade speculation links the Senators to Colorado Avalanche center Matt Duchene.

OTTAWA SUN: Bruce Garrioch reports Dorion admitted he’d been busy in recent days but the Sens GM was unable to swing a deal for a depth forward before the 5 pm ET deadline yesterday to submit his 23-man roster.  Garrioch reports the Sens were aggressive in their pursuit of Duchene but that’s not the type of move they want to make right now because they two sides aren’t close to a deal.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Depending on how the Senators start this season, Dorion could revisit his interest in a depth forward later this month. As for Duchene, while I don’t doubt the Sens GM is very interest in the Avs center, most of the reports I’ve heard and read of late indicate Dorion isn’t confident of landing him. 

MLIVE.COM: Ansar Khan reports contract talks between the Detroit Red Wings and restricted free agent forward Andreas Athanasiou have resumed. However, the two sides aren’t close to a deal. The Wings have offered a two-year deal worth $1.9 million per season and a one-year deal at $1.25 million. The Athanasiou camp seeks $2.5 million per season. 

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Seems like Athanasiou’s reps are hoping to squeeze the rebuilding Wings into overpaying for their client’s services. But with the Columbus Blue Jackets recently re-signing winger Josh Anderson to a three-year deal worth $1.85 million annually, I don’t see the Wings caving to his asking price. If this drags on throughout October, don’t be surprised if Athanasiou pops up in the trade rumor mill. 



  1. Forget Duchene and Ottawa. Never going to happen if Sakic starts every conversation with “I like Chabot ….”

    • … and I cannot lie!

      • Booooooooo.

      • 😂

    • Any guesses to where Duchense ends up?

      • Colorado?

  2. Gosh that’s the name(Athanisiou) I was hoping to hear yeaterday when Canucks were announcing a trade.
    That guy fits the age group that Benning is trying to assemble and is the type of player that Travis Green is looking for.

  3. Although Athanasiou isn’t really a “hold-out” per se (he’s an RFA without a contract), he wouldn’t be the first to sit out a long time over some aspect of his contract. Some prominent ones include

    Ken Dryden of the Habs took the entire 1973-74 season off.

    Alexei Yashin of the Sens sat out the 1999-2000 figuring it would finish the last year of his contract – it backfired

    Steve Larmer of the Black Hawks missed the first 4 weeks of the 1993 season – and in the process screwed his “iron man” record

    Pavel Bure missed 3 months of the 1998 season in Vancouver.

    Where RFAs are concerned, in the strike-shorted 2013 season Jamie Benn missed Dallas’ first 5 games, Ryan O’Reilly of Colorado st out their first 19 games, and P.K. Subban of Montreal was not there foer the first 2 weeks. Drew Doughty missed all pre-season games in 2011 for the Kings.

    • Didn’t Ken Dryden attend law school from 1974 to 1975?

      • That’s correct, Steven, though the holdout was due to Dryden’s unhappiness over the Habs’ contract offer, which he considered below market value. At the time, he was coming off a remarkable two-year stretch in which he won two Stanley Cups, a Conn Smythe Trophy, the Calder Trophy and the Vezina Trophy. He used that time off to complete his law degree, after which Habs GM Sam Pollock realized his error and signed Dryden to a fair deal.

    • Big difference, George, is those players were all established stars. Athanasiou is not. He’s only hurting himself right now.

      • Well, Benn, O’Reilly, Subban and Doughty were all RFAs when they stayed away.

      • Thanks Lyle,
        I didn’t know that about Dryden, and I agree with you that Athanasiou is hurting himself. Do you think is an example of a player relinquishing too much control to his agent? I mean who works for who here?

      • I can only guess, but in this case, I think it’s his agent driving the bus here.

      • Lyle…
        Most Canuck fans would take Athanisiou over the Vanek experiment.

        He is kind of a bad fit like a crocodile at an Alligator rally

      • Vanek was free & can be flipped at the trade deadline for a 2nd.

        Getting AA out of Det if even available would cost something greater than a 2nd.

  4. What formula does Dorion use to determine he is 49% sure? I know he is likely being facetious but it sounds weird. He seems like a different dude but I like what he is doing in Ottawa and he is not afraid to make a deal; something we commenters on this site like to see. The Zabinejad deal is a case in point for his willingness to address his perceived roster issues. Don’t know about the rest of you, but it seems to me that TSN analysts don’t have much faith in Ottawa and many have the Habs slated way ahead of the Sens. I personally think the Habs are in for a long season; the 9-2 drubbing of Ottawa aside. Ottawa always seems to find a way to work through their difficulties. I think the Sens, Bruins, and Hurricanes are three teams to look out for in the East.

    • The Toronto-centric pundits at TSN and Sportsnet always tend to put Ottawa among the also-rans. Sometimes they’re right – sometimes they’re dead wrong – like last year. Part of it is their description of them as a “budget team” – when in fact they are currently just under $6 mil under the cap. No, they don’t spend to the limit every year – but that has less to do with being a “budget team” than it does leaving some wiggle-room for the GM if and when the need arises. That leeway allowed Dorion to bring in Burrows, Wingels and Stahlberg last year for the final push and playoffs. Had he been smack up against the cap, that becomes a lot more difficult.

      • And if they think Methot was the difference in them making – or not making – the play offs, and his loss means they drop back, then their credibility as “experts” is shot full of holes.

      • I had Ott to make the playoffs last season due to them securing Phaneuf & being able to ice a solid top 4 D & Boucher’s defensive system out of the gate last season.

        Currently I have them missing for essentially the same reason. The loss of Methot & his role on the #1 pairing with Karlsson. I like Cleasson I hope it goes well for him & he can repalce Methot soon.

        Almost everything went perfectly for Ott last season, yes several players struggled offensively Brassard & Ryan learning Boucher’s system & his demands to lean to D 1st.

        I hope I’m wrong as I like Ottawa & a ton of their players but I try to pick with my head not me heart. Let’s hope I’m wrong as long as not ideally at Boston’s expense.

      • I subscribe to Toe Blake’s view on predictions – they’re for Gypsies. Instead I “hope.” There are simply far too many intangibles. As for “hope” – well there I hope Ottawa makes it – at the expense of Montreal for one.

      • Well I’m into them for the money. Predictions for me become bets in many cases.

      • Ottawa`s negative goal differential and their tendacy to be out shot and out chanced in games is what they are basing their opinion on. Can`t say I disagree. but where they think Ottawa will do a Colorado and after playing a year above their level they will the luck will run out. I think Ottawa is more well rounded than most has the depth at each position to maintain a run at the post season. No I don`t think they are top tier but they are where TSN has them a wild card team or perhaps even higher up in the division but if so the difference from where they are and the wild cards won`t be huge.

        Hockey like all sports has shown the best players win more often than then not. Ottawa has Karlsson and nothing else we would considered from the best in the league. previous cup Champs tend to have a few from what would be considered the best of the league.

        So yeah it isn`t unreasonable to discount the Sens. It also isn`t unreasonable to be excited about the leafs or the Oilers or Dallas. But teams like Tampa, Chicago and Pittsburgh will have their say.77

        But Go Sens Go

      • Almost everything went perfectly for Ottawa!? I heard this before and it snaps my head around.

        Nicole Anderson’s cancer?
        Macarthur missing the season?
        Bobby Ryans 3 point? (I know he had a bit more)
        Methot losing the tip of his finger?
        Karlsson fracturing his heel?

        It sure went perfect.

    • unbelievable how you sens fans get sucked in by management

  5. I’m surprised that Athanasou’s name hasn’t turned up in trade rumors already. With a realistic asking price for him, I think that Athanasou and a new $2.5 million contract would be a more attractive deal for a team needing a center than Duschene with a short-lived $6 million contract and a surrealistic asking price.

  6. I have said on here before and I will say it again; Athanasiou has been dealt with in good faith by the Red Wings. A two year deal at 1.9 million per season is quite fair in my opinion. Sign this deal, play your heart out, and then renegotiate. He’s a very good player and if he follows this basic concept he will get his “payday” as if 1.9 million per is not a payday.

    • I am not sure, but I have been wondering…

      With these deals coming down to only thousands in difference, are players looking to hit above a certain pay range more for personal reasons than ego or status?

      I know that even with some full-time everyman jobs if someone earns overtime it throws them into a different tax bracket which pretty much nils the extra money someone earns working overtime. So they basically do overtime work for a huge discount for their employer or almost for free. Is this sqaubble over what is peanuts for a millionaire to maximize tax brackets, especially in the 1-3 million range? I do also know from the O’Reilly fiasco that wherever you qualify an RFA player, the next contract negotiations start at that salary point. Which I am sure is a part of the overall strategy for earning future contracts.

      Basically, I was just wondering if sticking to your guns as an RFA player on contract negotiations is it more about getting the most from your salary, or is it more about ego/status?

      Anyway, whenever an RFA player risks ruining his career by sitting out the during the season while negotiationing the contract following his ELC, it usually means that he wants out of that organization most of the time. Some get their wish ala Turris, O’Reilly, etc. And some don’t. While others have to toil awhile before they get out, ala Drouin. For those that get their wish, all is forgotten in time except by the fans of that team. For those that don’t, it hangs heavy for a long time.

  7. Sam Bennett signed a 2 year bridge deal for 1.9 in Calgary, he has better NHL stats in his brief NHL career & a significantly better pedigree. He also played C last season & will permanently moving forward. I don’t pay AA what Bennett got. 2 years at 1.5 if looking for a comparable.

    Take it or leave it. Ferris is misrepresenting Anderson & AA. These kids missing camp could impact almost their entire season. A player like Frk could steal AA’s icetime with the opportunity AA not signing presents.

    • One recent example of an RFA missing all of camp – and never being the same again – was Jared Cowen.

      • name some goalies who, took several years to develop, like Subban; but had a good career in the end.

      • Just running thru it alphabetically.

        Miller Anh, drafted in 99 became a starter in 05-06.
        Raanta Arz. Now 28 undrafted 1st chance to be a starter this year.
        Rask. Drafted in 05 became the starter in 13-14. Did play numerous games prior due to injury to Thomas.
        Smith Cal drafted in 01 became starter in 11-12. Was defacto #1 for previous season in TB.
        Darling drafted in 07 getting 1st chance as a starter.
        Ward Car drafted in 02 became a starter in 06-07.
        Crawford drafted in 03 became a starter in 10-11.
        Varlamov drafted in 06 became a starter in 11-12.
        Bobrovsky undrafted became a starter in 13-14. Did play as Phi #1 for 1 season several years earlier.
        Bishop drafted in 05 became a starter in 13-14.

        I only went as far as Dallas slightly less than a 3rd of the league so I think the answer is a great many.

      • Cam Talbot went undrafted signed by the Rangers then at the age of 28 became the Oilers starter.
        Miikka Kiprusoff drafted in 1995 became the Flames starter in 2003.
        Just to name another couple.

      • Craig Anderson was drafted twice by Chicago – in 1999 (3rd round – 77th) and 2001 (3rd round – 73rd). Played sporadically with Chicago in 2002-3 (6 games), 203-04 (21 games), 2005-06 (29 games) – then with Florida in 2006-07 (5 games), 2007-08 (17 games) and 2008-09 (31 games) before becoming a # 1 in 2009-10 at age 29.

      • starters don`t normally become starters till the age of 26/27

        see recent starts in Bishop, Talbot and Jones. Though I only know Bishops age when he got the starting roll I`m willing to bet the other two will fall in around here.

      • Guess I should of read more. Others covered this.

        Yet even Price who started younger had his nay sayers he had to fight through. I remember when Halak had that stellar playoffs. I visited family in Gatineau Quebec at the time and people were talking around the city how montreal should trade Price and sign Halak. I was dumbfounded at the time, had many a discussion explaining how silly that would be. But I think price was around 26 then.

  8. Jets sign Nik Ehlers 7yrs $42m avg $6m coming off his second season in the league with 25g and 64pts. They may well be a very prudent deal for the jets. Tying up one of their young talents.

    • That is a good deal Caper. I really hope the Jets can improve from within this year. Too many penalties last year and shaky goaltending. I have said on here several times before that Paul Maurice is a great coach, but I don’t think necessarily for the Jets. This is a great roster on paper that has yet to actualize its potential. I know there is a lot of talk about the Oilers in the West right now, and deservedly so, but Calgary and Winnipeg are also good teams. This bodes well for all of hockey across Canada when you look at the Leafs upward trajectory and the always underappreciated Sens. Could be as many as five Canadian teams in the playoffs this season. If Carey Price stays healthy there could be six! Let’s not forget Montreal does have some decent players, but without Price playing at least 60 games their hopes are slim in my opinion.

      • I’m sitting here trying to finalize my projections for standings & playoffs getting in some final hedges on bets made earlier as rosters have evolved leading up to the start of the season today.

        I only have 3 Canadian teams in it at the moment. I’m still undecided on Mtl I have until just before 4 to try & resolve. I participate in an odd standings pool. Just a wager platform really. No excitement just cash & bragging rights.

        Struggling to decide who drops out of last seasons playoff picture so TB, NYI & Carolina can make it. Carolina is my darkhorse pick in the east but playing in the Metro seriously effects there chances. I’d like to think a bias doesn’t have me choosing Boston ahead of any of these teams. I didn’t have them making it the 3 previous seasons but I’m leaning to them making it this year but it would have to be at the expense of Ott, Mtl or 1 of those other 3. Boy are these hard decisions to make. It’s a coin toss really.

        The standings are going to be so much tighter than we have ever seen before. I have the difference between 7th & 12th in the West at a 6 point spread. 7th & 12th in the East at 8.

        Other than Vegas I don’t have anyone being brutal like Colorado was last season or when teams tanked it in the old lottery format to almost guarantee they choose 1st overall. Everyone has gotten better & if nothing else teams like NJ, Buf, Det in the East are going to be more exciting to watch.

        Injuries are playing a factor in the West already in Anh, Stl & Nas all have taken a serious hit right out of the gate. it’s even tighter in the West some very good teams aren’t going to make the playoffs in both conferences & choosing who is a challenge.

        I’m just not as sold on Dallas as many are. I think Winnipeg is a better team & has a better chance of bumping 1 of last years 8 out.

      • 3 of 5 division titles,improved defence and offence it’s not a matter of if the habs make the playoffs it’s whether they win the division again. The sens and leafs will be battling for the 3rd/wild card this yr they really didn’t do much to improve in the offseason

      • I think the Jets need to get Maurice out before they take the next step.

        There is a reason why some coaches bounce around more than others. Coaches like Maurice and Roy have good success early in their tenure with young, unestablished teams. But they lose effect in a few short years as their teams plateau and vascilate success between seasons. They have a short shelf life and seem to stale when teams mature and become more cohesive. Either the players tire of those coaches wearing on them, or those coaches just don’t know how to make a good team into an elite team with staying power. Once a player realizes that they have earned some respect as a player at any level and have a value around their league they begin to respect themselves and won’t subject themselves to tyrannical coach disciplines unless they bring the team results. So if your an abrasive coach who likes to rule your team with an iron fist, you better get results or have previously have bonded strongly with your players. Because, if the results don’t get you fired, your players certainly will. But if this is your coaching style, as long as you continue to win, you will find loyalty in some of your players. And if you produce wins as a coach, you can reign over your players as you see fit.

      • Sorry, went off on a tangent there.

  9. Caper – Johnny Bower? lol

    • My predictions:

      TB PIT NYR
      TOR WSH

      DAL SJ

  10. On another note, anybody find Malcolm Subban going to Vegas interesting?

    • I knew he would get plucked you figure Sweeney would make another bone head move and lose someone else for nothing

  11. Athanasiou is emblematic of what is wrong with some current youngsters: he has virtually no resume, no body of work even over two years and to be asking for 2.5 at this point? Trade him somewhere really fun like Colorado or Vegas, let him be a speedster little else to recommend him but that speed…surely some skills and consistency have to go with that for at least one more year?