NHL Rumor Mill – October 7, 2017

by | Oct 7, 2017 | Rumors | 45 comments

Latest on Kyle Turris, Andreas Athanasiou and Calvin Pickard in your NHL rumor mill. 

OTTAWA SUN: Don Brennan wonders if the recent rumor of an impasse in contract talks between Kyle Turris and the Ottawa Senators is the work of a rival general manager trying to rock the Senators’ boat.

On Thursday night, TSN’s Darren Dreger reported Turris seeks a seven- or eight-year contract but the Sens are reluctant to hand out such a lengthy deal. Dreger suggested the deadlock could result in Turris getting traded.

Brennan doesn’t see either side benefiting from revealing that information. Despite Turris’ UFA status next July, he doubts the Sens would try to move him when they’re hoping for a return trip to the playoffs. While Brennan admits a trade is possible he said it’s not what he’s hearing.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Oh, the intrigue! Regardless of who fed the contract stalemate story to Dreger, I don’t see the Senators trading him if they’re jockeying for a playoff berth before the Feb. 26 trade deadline. Unless they get a sweetheart offer from a rival club, they certainly won’t move him now.

Of course, the fact Senators GM Pierre Dorion was reportedly very interested in Colorado Avalanche center Matt Duchene could give rise to speculation of a Turris-for-Duchene swap. While anything’s possible, that goes against months of conjecture claiming Avs GM Joe Sakic wants a package of good young talent in return. The 28-year-old Turris is nearly two years older than Duchene. Even if Sakic was interested he’d want assurances Turris will re-sign before pulling the trigger on a trade. 

THE DETROIT NEWS: Gregg Krupa reports Detroit Red Wings winger Andreas Athanasiou is heading to Switzerland for some skating and to assess his options, including seeing if there’s a market for his services in Europe. Athanasiou is the only unsigned player among this year’s crop of NHL restricted free agents. 

MLIVE.COM: Ansar Khan reports the Wings had offered Athanasiou a two-year deal worth $1.9 million annually and a one-year deal worth $1.25 million. The 23-year-old, however, seeks $2.5 million per season. He also had an offer from KHL club AK Bars Kazan but a source said it was withdrawn because Athanasiou was asking for too much. 

SPECTOR’S NOTE: I just don’t understand what Athanasiou hopes to accomplish here. He’s a promising player but is really in no position to made demands for more money. In fact, he’s now losing money.The Wings made two fair offers. If unsigned by Dec. 1 he’ll be ineligible to play in the NHL for the remainder of the season. 

If the issue is he’s unhappy playing for Wings coach Jeff Blashill,, this is the wrong way to go about addressing it. This standoff also gives him a reputation for being difficult in contract talks, which could also hurt his trade value. 

SPORTSNET: Chris Johnston believes the Toronto Maple Leafs’ acquisition on Friday of goaltender Calvin Pickard from the Vegas Golden Knights hints at more moves to come for the club. The Leafs sent Pickard to their AHL affiliate but Johnston doubts he’ll be in the minors for long, suggesting he might supplant Curtis McElhinney as Toronto’s backup goalie.



  1. Turris to replace Tavares?
    Just stirring the pot

    I still do not believe JT resigns

  2. That article by Brennan also reveals a bit about how players view all the speculation tossed out by the Dregers of the world, with Zach Smith saying “I can’t speak for Kyle, but if I was in that situation, it could be a distraction. I’d be lying if I said it wasn’t. Especially around trade deadline, and they’ve got those guys on the panels..40 guys they think are getting traded, eight of them might end up getting moved. It’s a lot of worry for nothing.”

    The article also goes on to say: “Checking to see which color jersey Karlsson is wearing at practice has become duty No. 1 for everybody these days. As soon as he is dressed like his teammates, it’s expected Karlsson will be ready to go. “I was trying to decipher the yellows from the greens to the blues,” Mark Borowiecki joked yesterday. “He’s back in the blue. My head’s just spinning.” … When Smith was asked what color he’d like to see Karlsson wear, he said purple. “I haven’t seen that one yet,” said Smith, grinning. “There’s got to be a lime green around. My first couple of years, we had the Slime Line or whatever. Ryan Shannon, me and Jesse Winchester. Maybe we could get that one back.” Players are apparently having a chuckle watching the media checking out Karlsson’s colours. “We’re fascinated you guys get excited about it,” said Smith.

  3. Lyle, maybe I am late to the party here, but that new Spectors graphic is pretty sharp. It really looks great.

    • Thanks, Deeee. We’ve had it for a while. It’s my Twitter avatar.

      • I don’t think I have you on twitter so that would explain it. I’ll fix that right now.

  4. Good luck wasting away for one year Andeas Athanasiou we still own your rights for 4 more years and if you’re wanting out of Detroit you’re going about it the wrong way. AA could sign a one or two year deal and be salary arbitration rights in a year or two and no going into next year he will be in the same boat as this year. AA will still have no arbritration rights heading into next year.

    • As far as NHL career aspirations are concerned, he should change his name To Euthanasia.

      • Totally agree with you George O. He should change his name to Euthanasia because that’s what he’s committing right now by being a child.

    • Actually it might be 5 more years. Terrible council by his agent. Enjoy the chocolate, mountains & scenery.

      If I’m a team signing a player late I prorate his salary & I factor in at least 6 games lost to trying to catch up so not paying them for those games either.

      That means my offer to AA now is 2 years at 1.5, take it or enjoy above.

      • With apologies to Clement Moore, it seems, based upon an 18-goal season, “visions of grandeur dances in their heads …”

      • I agree with you Striker, And i’m pretty sure that Ken Holland is telling Daren Ferris that right now as long as our client holds out. It’s going to be less money for him to resign for each day that goes by that $1.9 million becomes less and less.

  5. Dreger has moved from reputable broadcaster to sensationalist. He seems more interested in developing his hits on social media, increasing his revenue stream than being a responsible reporter.

    Have never been a huge fan but appreciated his insight, what little respect I have had for him has vanished in just over a year as his style has changed.

    Not sure what happened for him to change his style & not in a good way.

    • I’ve never liked Dreger and he’s completely converted to a hack with Duchene and now Turris. He so wants to be Bob MacKenzie when he is more like Eklund.

      • As Striker says, he has become a “voice of choice” on sports news whenever they’re looking for a filler on one of their “shows” – whether what he says has any basis in fact being completely immaterial. In other words, in the tradition of Toronto-based media “tell them what they WANT to hear … rather than what they SHOULD hear …” – Steve Simmons being a past-master at that game.

        I tend to avoid them for the most part, but am amused when host James Duthie looks at some of them with an expression that might be saying “you’re so full of crap your eyes are brown …”

      • Yeah I would call that the “Dwayne Klessel Culture Killer Effect.” Clicks are more important than facts.

    • I disagree on your thoughts on Gus Dreger. He is well connected and along with McKenzie and Friedman are the 3 most reputable insiders. All though living in Toronto now, he has worked in Edmonton and winnipeg and has close friends in the islanders organization.

      • I’d take Pierre Lebrun and even Nick Kypreos ahead of Darren Dreger any day. Dreger’s rumours basically never come through and if they do, they are obvious to anyone who is a regular fan. Anyone could predict Duchene will be traded at some point in the next year.

        Another example, last season he did a clip on TSN about ten guys who could be on different teams the following year. All of the players were UFA’s at the end of the season. Great work, Sherlock!

  6. AA it’s not too late take the offer ,of course unless it is off the table- ouch

  7. AA wants more and feels he’s being low ball, I wouldn’t be concerned about a reputation of being difficult to deal with, this thread talks about Turris, and what might happen but no mention of being difficult to sign going forward and their is numerous of examples. Simply put if your good someone will sign you.
    AA has all the right in the world to NOT sign a contract that he doesn’t see as fair; as did Jacob Trouba who ended up signing or a two year low ball offer, that will come back to bite the jets in the hinny next year.

    • Trouba accomplished nothing holding out for 21 games, then missing the 1st game after finally signing, then needing another dozen games before he finally started to play like the Trouba we expected.

      Trouba got what was on the table in July, his hold out was meaningless, he hurt himself & Winnipeg.

      If AA thinks Holland & Detroit are buckling for a player that was drafted in the 4th round 5 years ago who has managed 27 goals & 43 points in 101 career NHL games he’s going to be very disappointed.

      He has every right to hold out, good for him & his perception of himself. Frk thanks him for the opportunity he could have had, good luck getting that opportunity back, enjoy being a 4th line player seeing around 10 to 13 mins a game this year should you decide to return or next.

      What a waste, the only person suffering now & long term is AA.

      • Striker, I know you always take the teams side whether its right or wrong.
        By saying that Trouba only hurt himself and Winnipeg, you are acknowledging that Chevy also hurt the Jets in his hard line stance.
        Trouba and AA chose the path they did and that’s their choice.
        Trouba as arbitration rights coming up and will be an rfa in 2yrs. We all know Trouba was vastly underpaid last season and is underpaid this season; also Chevy choice to take the hardline stance he did. But don’t think for one second there will be any home town discount because you just got it. They may also make the player want to leave town (which might be his plan all along).
        AA, made his choice and has until December 1st to sign, this player is to good not to be in the lineup and Detroit will struggle to make the playoff, which I don’t think they will regardless if AA sign today or November 30th.
        If i’m AA and Detroit doesn’t budget I’m sitting until November 30th and I’ll sign on that day for 1yr, regardless of the money I’m losing. The only reason I’m doing this is because I have to commit to my position and yes pride and principles can be expensive.

      • This is a business. Chevy did what he had to do financially in the NHL’s smallest market, he would have been happy to sign Trouba long term for monies similiar to Lindholm, Ristolainen, etc. but not at the ridiculous monies he was demanding if reports are to be believed & the situation certainly appears to reveal they were, nor does Trouba want to be in Winnipeg. He wants a large market US based team to market himself in.

        You know my thoughts on how the Trouba situation is going to play out in Winnipeg. Trouba is now going to use the leverage his 2 year bridge deal provides him now. Winnipeg will be forced to trade Trouba to a team he is willing to sign with or he elects arbitration this summer, asks for a 2 year deal & is a UFA following commanding huge money as a UFA, 8 mil+ easily.

        Detroit isn’t making the playoffs, the will be 1 of the 6 worst teams in the NHL if not bottom 3. So many coin tosses in the new NHL almost impossible to rank 1 to 31, 3 of 4 teams in any grouping you choose that could fall any # of ways.

        Trying to force Detroit’s hand with threats of going to the KHL & now going to skater but not sign in Europe are worthless threats. If Detroit was buckling it would have happened long ago.

        If I were AA I would telling Ferris to take the deal & your fired.

  8. What’s curious is that Athanasiou has the same agent as comparables Josh Anderson and Sam Bennett, Darren Ferris. Ferris must have an agenda, and something up his sleeve to accomplish it. An apparent variable among his clients is their team’s cap space. Perhaps, he feels there is an NHL team that would be happy to pay his client a million dollars more than what Detroit wants to pay for him.

    • Absolutely, if a UFA teams would happily overpay him but coming out of his ELC with zero leverage & little NHL expeience showing minor glimses that’s not happening. Even demanding a trade for a player like this doesn’t help. Detroit isn’t moving this asset undervalue they need to see more.

      Go play in Europe & be worth even less when you return.

      • That makes no sense, don’t trade him because he’s undervalue, then go play in Europe where you’ll be worth less. Tell me how that statement helps Detroit.
        It’s amusing to me how amped up you get when a player doesn’t sign what the team is offering.
        Look at Nik Ehlers signed for 7yrs at $6m, on the radio and newspapers here in Winnipeg everyone talking about what a great job Chevy done and this is a steal of a deal. Which they are correct, but I was wondering what in the heck was the agent thinking, how come no one talking about him and if he provided his client with the best advice.

      • Regardless of whether the advice came from his agent – he’s following that advice so it’s something with which he must agree. No?

        Much like when a player is reportedly unhappy with his contract. He SIGNED the damned thing so there should be NO complaint. At least not publicly.

      • teams can buy themselves out of bad contracts… players cant buy themselves out of bad contracts. not a level playing field george.

        most people who take the side of the teams over players do so out of jealousy. “they get to play a game and get paid millions… blah blah blah.” AA’s case though I tend to agree with striker. he has no leverage. he isnt the difference between a playoff team or not. his pedigree isnt a factor. red wings tend to gain more by playing hard ball and making an example of him than him playing hard ball. I’m all about rfa hitting asap and hope the players get more leverage next cba but aa aint got nothing to stand on right now.

      • So, someone’s opinion that the players making millions a year should be happy with what they SIGNED for is “blah blah blah” in YOUR considered opinion??? How about your own stance? Is that not just merely “blah blah blah” from a different angle?

      • Your right George. Those ungrateful turds should thank the owners and fans daily they get the opportunity to show off their talents each season. Ingrates!

      • yes teams can buy themselves out of bad contracts making the player a UFA free to sign anywhere, it doesn’t usually happen with players that aren’t in their UFA eligibility years, with a few minor exceptions.

        These rights were negotiated thru collective bargaining, agreed to for all intense & purposes by AA himself. Democarcy, majority rule, players had to vote 65% in favor of this agreement. AA didn’t have a vote at that time.

        I’m well aware of your position on the CBA. Your not a proponent. I am & I lean to those that take the risks, do all the management, incur all the costs & financial risks & are around far longer than any 1 individual player.

        No 1 forced Ehlers to sign that deal, that’s a fair deal for both parties. I don’t know what it is about Nordic players, Denmark counts for me but they just seem to be fair more willing to be fair.

        We can all enjoy the next lock out as the players are still being far to rewarded for their contributions to the game, the reason so many teams are still losing monies, better revenue sharing is need as well.

        Do you or have you owned your own business that has more than say 6 employee’s? Just curious.

  9. The other interesting dynamic in play with Detroit is they simply don’t have the cap space to sign AA. The could designate him as a non roster player briefly after signed but would need to make a trade 1st to free up the cap space to activate him.

  10. With all the AA talk I am curious about Detroit’s offer. From what I read it was 2 yr @ 1.9m AAV. They also offered a 1 yr @ 1.2m It that correct? Any word if AA camp was seeking a 1 yr @ 1.9m instead of a 2 yr @1.9 ?

    I understand how the NHL works but in the rest of the world you have the right as a worker by law to walk away if no contract has been signed between you and the employer to freely sign where you wish for how much.

    Sees more like DET is playing hardball with a young talent because they over spent and cannot free reasonable cap space. I say at least 6 players on that team are making from 1-2 million more than their worth. This kid seems to be asking for only 600K additional if he is to sign a 2 yr deal? Seems fair enough

    • There are tons of comparables for a player with this pedigree, skill set, & time played in the NHL.

      You can’t compare professional athlete’s with normal humans. The have a union called the NHLPA, they have negotiated a collective bargaining agreement with the NHL that provides both sides with specific rights.

      • If not for this agreement the NHL would still be much smaller & with that the NHL much smaller & a player like AA never having ac chance to even be an NHL player. The fact he has even made it to the NHL as a 4th round draft pick seriously defies the odds.

        I total agree with you that Detroit has overpaid numerous players. I’m not sure I would have paid all those players that money. It would have meant losing some to UFA status but in some cases that is the best course of action, cap space has value & spending more money on players than they are truly worth in this cap world is fraught with peril.

        It’s to bad AA appears to have a bright future, hard to project what that is yet as he’s been used in such a limited role but 18 goals in 64 games seeing under 14 mins a game, although he did see 2nd line PP time is impressive.

      • And it’s his right to choose not to play. He is well worth the 1.9 IMHO, the hold up is that Detroit has no cap space.
        AA has every right to refuse being under paid, it’s his career his choice. Is he making the wrong decision? maybe, but it’s his to make.

      • This guy scored 18 goals last year (just 11 assists) and he and his agent seriously thinks that makes him worth $2.5 mil???

        Michael Grabner once scored 16 goals for the Islanders (just 5 assists) and last season potted 27 goals for the Rangers (just 13 assists) – and he’s playing for $1,650,000!

        It may be his “right” to hold out for what he thinks he deserves – but it’s also Detroit’s right to tell him to take the proverbial hike.

      • Yes it is his choice & his only option. It serves no purpose, he’s fighting a battle he can’t win so he can go play where ever he wishes just not in North America. The NHL controls it’s property, the AHL & the ECHL.

        His agent his done him a serious injustice as Detroit won’t be upping it’s offer if anything it will be getting reduced by more than just the amortized monies lost for games missed.

        Switzerland is great place to play, my cousin played 7 years in Italy then 5 in Switzerland after completing his scholarship at Michigan state. Loved it, married an Italian girl & is now a bond trader in Switzerland.

        Unfortunately for AA he didn’t get a degree in economics. Ha-ha!

      • and how many young players are represented by this cba? the nhlpa ;like most unions throws its young to the wolves for the benefit of the older players who have paid more into the system. AA’s situation is the reality but that doesnt make it right.

      • I can’t think of too many unions where the members negotiate their own pay – and in the millions.

      • I don’t know what AA is complaining about. He is being offered Calle Jarnkrok money. 🙂

      • 65% of registered NHLPA members had to approve this CBA. Significantly more than that did so.

        Your never going to make me feel sorry for a player that is being offered 1.9 mil per season to travel above 1st class, stay in 5 star hotels & be treated like a God.

        Poor kid how’s he expected to manage on such a stipend.

      • Well by just about everyone but his coach & GM. Ha-ha!

        Their going to push him to be better & the business side of the game is going to dictate their actions.

        AA hasn’t earned anything yet. Until he has he has essentially no rights other than the 1 he’s choosing.

        I think he’s being stupid, you don’t but the reality of the situation is this does nothing to help him just the opposite in fact. I’m not saying he’s squandering his future but if takes a year off from the NHL he may never get the opportunity to return. I’m not saying that will happen but it is the risk he’s choosing.

        There was a 3rd line spot up for grabs, essentially a promotion for him over his role to date, that opportunity is gone now for this season whether he returns or not. It’s 4th line with barely 2nd line PP time now. The season will be 12 to 15 games in before he will be of any value this season if signed very soon.

      • Don’t worry Striker, chrisms will organize a food-stamp drive for them. Even worse is baseball where some idiot pitcher left the Blue Jays for the Red Sox for a million dollar difference in a contract that would have paid him $30 MILLION. Now he’s bitching because he’s been relegated to the bull-pen and wants out of Boston! Jaysus.

  11. Wow. I didn’t expect people to do adamantly prove that their frustration is based on jealousy. The cba exists and was agreed on and players / owners need to play by it. But I’m not going to denigrate a young player who didn’t get the opportunity to represent himself in this agreement the right to fight for himself with whatever tools he has… which in aas case is limited to none. Pretty nasty of some people to take enjoyment from that. Shines a light into a darker part of them. People enjoying others being “taken down a peg” need to look in the mirror and wonder where that vitriol is coming from

    • I don’t blame the kid at all. He’s not the one negotiating the imminent deal, his agent is.
      Maybe he needs to hire a new agent.
      You can’t think for one second that his agent, or any agent doesn’t want to get his player the absolute max available to him.
      They get a frigging percentage of all monies earned through the contract that they themselves negotiate.
      Greedy agents are what’s gonna cause the next lockout, not the players.
      I worked in a union setting for 15 years,
      On both sides of the bargaining table, as a union executive, and later as a manager.
      There’s way more going on than meets the eye.
      Anyway, who cares, enjoy the games feller, Ovie is on a torrid pace, the kids are great to watch, and the game is as exciting as I can remember in the last 20 years.