NHL Rumor Mill – November 8, 2017

by | Nov 8, 2017 | Rumors | 54 comments

Latest on Carey Price, Mitch Marner, Evander Kane and much more in your NHL rumor mill.

SPORTSNET: Nick Kypreos clarified his remarks from Saturday’s Hockey Night in Canada headlines segment, saying Montreal Canadiens goaltender Carey Price’s contract switched from a no-trade to a complete no-movement clause in the final season of his current deal.

However, if the Canadiens decide to go into a rebuild, Kypreos wonders if they’ll want a goalie earning $10.5 million annually over the next eight seasons to be part of it, or if Price will want to be part of it. He thinks Price felt the Habs would contend for a Stanley Cup when he re-signed with them.

Citing the return the Colorado Avalanche received in the Matt Duchene deal, Kypreos said if he were Canadiens general manager Marc Bergevin, he would shop Max Pacioretty for three or four pieces that could turn the franchise around.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Kypreos is merely stating his opinion and not reporting that Price or Pacioretty will be dealt. I don’t see Bergevin shopping either guy this season. However, if the Canadiens fail to reach the playoffs this season, the Habs GM will be under pressure to turn things around. If it comes to moving the Habs top players, Pacioretty (who is slated for UFA eligibility in 2019) seems the most likely trade candidate. 

Kypreos also believes the Toronto Maple Leafs should trade forward Mitch Marner. Looking at their depth chart, he wonders where Marner fits in as a “go-to guy”, noting Auston Matthews, William Nylander, Zach Hyman and Connor Brown are ahead of him. He feels it’s inevitable that Marner gets moved, doubting he’ll ever be a “top-three” with the Leafs.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Of the Leafs’ young forwards, Marner would fetch the best return, that being an established top-four defenseman. Let’s face it, Matthews and Nylander aren’t going anywhere and Hyman and Brown won’t bring in the type of return that provides immediate help to their blueline. Perhaps Marner doesn’t get dealt this season but I think Kypreos is right saying a trade is inevitable. 

In his latest “31 Thoughts” column, Kypreos’ colleague Elliotte Friedman said the recent three-team deal that sent Matt Duchene to Ottawa and Kyle Turris to Nashville leaves “nothing obvious” for teams such as the Columbus Blue Jackets (who may have been interested in both players) and the Pittsburgh Penguins (“hovering around Duchene”). He also feels the Edmonton Oilers might be the next team to try something but not on the scale as the Senators-Predators-Avalanche blockbuster.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: The Blue Jackets were definitely interested in Duchene. They’ll now likely have to wait until the final weeks leading up to the Feb. 26 trade deadline to bring in a scoring center. While the Penguins apparently kicked the tires on Duchene, they couldn’t afford to take on his $6 million annual cap hit and instead went for a more affordable option by acquiring Riley Sheahan from Detroit. 

As for the Oilers, they’ve made Jussi Jokinen available and could be willing to move Ryan Strome, but I don’t those players bringing in a return that addresses their lack of scoring punch at right wing and their struggling defense. 

Friedman also reports the Anaheim Ducks made a legitimate attempt to acquired center Vadim Shipachyov from the Vegas Golden Knights, but the bonus repayment issue got in the way. Shipachyov is expected to retire from the NHL, repay most of his $2 million signing bonus and return to the KHL.

TSN: In the wake of the Duchene trade, Frank Seravalli moves Buffalo Sabres left wing Evander Kane atop TSN’s trade bait board. He reports Sabres GM Jason Botterill is said to be listening to offers but isn’t actively shopping the winger. Kane is eligible for UFA status next July and is off to a strong start this season, boosting his trade value.

Montreal Canadiens winger Alex Galchenyuk cracks the top 10, with Seravalli claiming Habs GM Bergevin isn’t hanging up on those calling to inquire about the one-time 30-goal scorer.

Vegas’ James Neal, Luca Sbisa and David Perron sit second, fourth and sixth on the list, Detroit defenseman Mike Green sits third, Vancouver’s Thomas Vanek and Erik Gudbranson are fifth and ninth, with NY Rangers winger Rick Nash and LA Kings defenseman Alec Martinez seventh and eighth.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: If the Sabres do move Kane it’ll be near the Feb. 26 trade deadline. Much will depend upon his play between now and then, as well as that of the Sabres and his asking price to re-sign with Buffalo. Bergevin said he isn’t giving up on Galchenyuk but I wouldn’t be surprised if he’s keeping an ear open for interesting offers. As for Martinez, as long as the Kings’ offense continues playing weel over the course of the season, I don’t see him going anywhere. 

During Tuesday’s “Insider Trading” segment, Pierre LeBrun reports the possibility of losing Nikita Soshnikov on loan to the KHL for the rest of the NHL season will force them to call him up, prompting speculation they could make a trade to free up a log jam at forward to address their defense. 

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Could that lead to a Marner trade? Probably not, though one shouldn’t fully dismiss the possibility. Right now there aren’t a lot of quality defensemen available. It could lead to a minor deal that doesn’t involve Marner or any of the Leafs better forwards or perhaps a lesser light hitting the waiver wire. 

Bob McKenzie reports the Calgary Flames don’t want to trade young forward Sam Bennett, who has yet to pick up a point this season. Teams are calling about him in hopes of getting him as a bargain-basement reclamation project. 

Darren Dreger reports Ottawa Senators GM Pierre Dorion remains interested in adding another forward but it’s not a front burner issue right now. 

LeBrun reports the Anaheim Ducks are seeking a top-six forward, preferably a left winger or a left-handed center and have been in the market since the offseason. They were keeping tabs on Duchene prior to his trade to Ottawa. 

SPECTOR’S NOTE: The absence of Ryan Kesler, Patrick Eaves and now Ryan Getzlaf to injuries leaves the Ducks thin up front this season. It’ll likely cost them one of their good young defensemen to bring in a long-term solution. 



  1. Think the Oilers would trade RNH and Strome for Kessel? That might just help both teams. The Pens have an elite scoring right winger waiting in the minors.
    Guentzel Crosby Sprong
    Sheary Malkin Hornqvist
    Rust RNH Strome
    Haglen Sheahan Reaves
    Deep again.

    • Pretty sure the Pens would prefer to hang on to Kessel instead. He’s leading the pens in scoring and that not easy to do when you have Sid and Geno on your team

    • I agree RNH could help the Penguins but I’m not giving up Phil The thrill Kessel! I am certainly not taking an underachieving Strome…

      • I’m trading an asset who is at his most valuable but plays a position that is in an abundant supply for 2 top 9 centres, a position that is an organizational weakness. It makes the team younger and deeper. The Penguins and Mike Sullivan are masters of reclamation projects. Strome would thrive in Pittsburgh. The Oilers are looking for scoring help on the RW, Kessel is one of the best in the league. But Daniel Sprong should be an NHL player and costs way less than Kessels cap hit. And Kessel is one of the few wingers that can keep pace with McDavid. This is a trade that helps both teams as it puts Draisaitl at 2C where he belongs. Kessel has bad chemistry with Crosby and mediocre chemistry with Malkin and zero chemistry with Sheahan. I would sell high on Kessel now instead of 2 years from now when his contract is harder to move.

  2. First thing to note I am not writing off Mitch Marner. But it is interesting last year the leafs and Mark Hunter were being heralded as these draft gurus when they picked Marner.
    In hindsight they would have had a top defenceman in Werenski, Provorov or Hanifin. If they had selected a D man instead of Marner a few years back.

    • That’s why they were getting compared to the oilers rebuild, not drafting the top dmen hurt the oilers and it’s hurting the leafs

    • Maybe they can still get Hanifan for Marner. The Canes are pretty loaded at d and are having trouble scoring. Maybe if Marner gets away from Babcock his play will improve. The Leafs still have Kapanen.

      • I wanted Hanifin weeks leading up to the draft but obviously had no idea the Leafs would land Matthews the year after. Neither did the brass, so i’ll give the benefit of the doubt there.

        Not sure why moving marner is necessary, he can play center and maybe that is something the leafs would explore before trading him.

        Why not think of the top 3C being Matthews, Marner and Kadri. Maybe also do a bridge deal for Marner until Marleau is off the books?
        I believe the ducks and NYR would both make some sort of offer for Bozak at the moment.

      • Trade marner??? No he will do and be a huge part of the Maple leafs. Speacial player, if he is traded what a shame! He will score or create the big time wins. Trade him i stop watching. Nick kypreos is wrong yet AGAIN.

    • Deeeeee…Yes Kessel and Crosby dont have great chemistry but Malkin and kessel are fairly solid together. Kessel is leading the penguins in scoring so he must be doing something right. IT’S CALLED THE POWER PLAY..

  3. I don’t think playing Marner on the fourth line helps anything. If you want to trade him you are not showcasing him as a top player. If you want to keep him you are not giving him the opportunity he needs to help your team. I get that he would fetch the greatest return, but let’s not forget that the Leafs have a ton of depth upfront. They could easily get a top four D man by packaging young talent and picks and keep Marner. The recent three team deal saw all three teams keep and/or retrieve talent. And, of course, signing the big three upfront could be costly also.

    • I love Marner and it doesn’t make sense to move him when he’s struggling but, worse comes to worst, Carolina would be an obvious trading partner.
      Something to consider, though, is that the Leafs are building some serious depth in defencemen prospects. The answer might come from within the organization.
      As an aside, if the Anaheim Ducks didn’t have bad luck these days, they’d have no luck at all. Gotta feel for Randy Carlyle.

    • Rental maybe. But not an solid top 4 peice for now and the future for picks and prospects.

    • Steven, with regards to Marner on the 4th line, it is just a case of Babcock trying to send a message to Marner. Your ice time, quantity or quality, is earned.
      They are trying to win hockey games and you can’t play someone ahead of another if they don’t deserve it. For whatever reason Babcok has.
      Showcasing a player won’t enter Babcock’s mind unless Lou tells him too, which he won’t.

    • Move babcock. Marner stays. Create a marner line, go after dovrak his center from london. Overpay to get him, coyotes are struggling. Long time leaf fan and you dont get Marners ever!

  4. Re-worded: “…if the Canadiens fail to reach the playoffs this season, WHOEVER THE HABS GM IS AT THAT TIME will be under pressure to turn things around.” 🙂

    No chance Bergevin survives a missed playoffs, I’d say. And to give him the keys to a Carey Price trade? Even less chance.

  5. Maybe Arizona needs a goalie called Price…to advertise to OEL they are serious about contending.

    I am sure the package can start with Strome & a 1st rd pick and pile on that from there.

    • You never did answer my question. Why do you hate Crosby?

      • Probably just a continuation of an ages old attitude. When I started following hockey waaaay back when you either hated or loved Gordie Howe, Rocket Richard, Stan Mikita, Phil Esposito – right on up through Gretzky. Twas ever thus.

  6. Kypreos and anyone that fully believes him is an idiot. How many teams have traded a player after a 60pt. rookie season? Anyone? If any young forward gets moved it will be after his ELC and teams that are successful usually do so without weakening the team by trading away a star. As much “depth” the leafs seem to have, they really don’t have a move available that will not weaken them at this time.

    • The leafs can ill afford to lose forward depth for next year. Bozak and JVR as as good as gone, signing Komorov will be a challenge too

      • Tas: Is Marner good enough as a center that the teams mentioned above as still looking for one would be interested? If so, Who on the rosters of those teams might the Leafs consider as a fair return?

    • Thank you. I have had the pleasure of watching Marner all last year. He is the most skilled talent I have seen on the Leafs since Salming. His skill level is off the charts. Yes, Mathews is a far more complete player and his size is a huge advantage and yes Mathews will be the better of the two. All I am saying here is we will not be dealing a player with that level of skill. Our defense will be more than fine within two years.

      • “Our defense will be more than fine within two years.”

        Bold, flat-out statements like that call for some explanation/assessment. Based on what exactly?

      • Leafs have next to nothing coming up as fas as defense goes, even liljgren is not what they need he is more a forward when it comes down to it

  7. Seems like the Ducks should re-consider a trade for Shipachyov … now that Getzlaf is on the IR for two months they need serious help at center.

    Split the 2 million bonus 50-50 with Vegas and give them a 4th round pick.

    Canes could use Shipachyov as well…

    I’d make a much better GM than them, give me the job! 😉

  8. The odds were that at least 1 of Toronto,’s 6 kids, Matthews, Nylander, Marner, Hyman, Brown or Zairean would experience the dreaded sophomore slump.

    Thankfully it’s only 1 & lots of time to get back on track.

    Will be interesting to see how the Shoshnikov situation plays into Tor’s plans.

    Tor could easily move 2 forwards. Shoshnikov, Kapanen & Leivo are all NHL ready. 3 more games for Shoshnikkv before he needs to clear waivers & if not in the NHL by Nov 14 can return to the KHL if inclined.

    I assume something has to give in trade. Bozak, Leivo, Shoshnikov?

    If Tor moves Marner & that’s a big if the return will be substantial. Marner is a great young player but I don’t see him getting you a Hanafin. Carolina is in the mid to later stages of a significant rebuild they lose buckets of money & I don’t really see Francis doing anything but potentially stop gapping.

    • Sorry dam spell checker. Zaitsev

    • Striker. One of your points left my question unanswered. If you think that Marner would not bring a Hannifin back to Toronto. Why didn’t the leaf pick Hanafin right from the start.

      • because they are fools, I wanted them to draft Hanifin that year with all the forward depth in the draft for 2016. Looking back would’ve been nice to select Provorov though

      • Taz, fools? seriously? Marner and Strome were unanimous 3 and 4. If the leafs are fools for picking Marner over Hanifan, then the Yotes are the mayor of fools for not picking Marner. No offense to Strome, Marner is just better. Plus you’re only basing your Hanifan pick on the fact the 2016 draft was deep but how could you have possibly known that in 2015? Or known they would get Matthews. It’s too easy to analyze in hindsight.

      • Ya, fools is a little harsh.
        My memory isn’t great but I think Hanafin was ranked 3 by Central Scouting. Then Strome, then Marner.

      • Hindsight is a beautiful thing! How many times to teams in general take the wrong player?
        If the oilers could go back to the 2012 draft they’d probably not pick Yakupov. Trouba, Ceci, Murray, Reilly, Skjei, Forsberg, etc.

        Well that regime would probably take Yak anyway but….

  9. I am sure ownership was involved in the Price signing in fact I would say every stakeholder. Can’t blame one guy on that bad deal

  10. Projecting 17 & 18 year old kids isn’t an exact science. Players can become far more & for that matter far less than what they were thought of as they continue developing.

    Tor drafted who & what they thought was the best player in their position.

    Marner is a great player. Some kids go through a sophomore slump some don’t no formula or stats or odds of probability to try & detrmine such.

    I just don’t see any reason for Carolina to move Hanafin. No slight to Marner. They have a ton of young forwards in the NHL & coming. Keep all the Dman until contracts force the issue. For me the 1st will be Faulk 2 years our if he can’t be extended.

    Just educated assumptions. Nothing a state hear are facts. Wishful thinking & bias sneaking in occasional. I hate Montreal I think that bias should be obvious being a Bruins fan.

    • Striker, I agree with you. I don’t know how Carolina values Hanafin vs Marner and they are very entitled to their own assessment. They likely don’t make that trade based on their assessment and needs. Time will ultimately tell who was right or more right. Marner was a Mark Hunter selection. I was disappointed the day of the draft and preferred Hanafin, I don’t anymore.

      • If you’re a leaf you’re nuts to be happy with marner over hanifan, no offense to marner but the leafs need dman they don’t have much coming up

      • Leaf fan*

  11. Trading Mitch Marner is the most asinine idea I have ever heard. A complete season lost in the abyss to generate a top draft, one of the best they have had in decades and now he is trade bait? The reason he is not doing well is because he is working with players like Tyler Bozak who plays with eggs in his pockets and JVR who is useless outside of 5-10 feet of the opposition’s net. He needs to be put with elite players like Matthews or Nylander to reach his potential. They have established a core of Matthews, Nylander, Marner, Rielly, Zaitsev, Hyman, Kadri and Brown. Everyone else is dead weight and expendable if the plans are to attain a contender. You are not going to make it past the first round with a goalie that can’t stop a beachball (Andersen), a defensemen who plays as if he is wearing rubber boots (Polak), defensemen that are liabilities in their own zone (Gardiner, Carrick, Borgman), and others who wouldn’t crack an expansion team lineup. (1) Start trading the dead weight and replace them with players who aren’t afraid to forecheck, hit, and play with passion. (2) Bring up players in the minors who aren’t being given a fair chance and have greater potential than deadweights like Bozak.

    • Riiight….. Trade all dead weight for top, top players. Should be easy!

      Surprised no other GM has figured out this secret.

      • Hasn’t that been the mantra of Leafs fans since … well … 1967?

    • Frank, what I took from your post is that the Leafs really need a top D-man. Which I would agree with. Rielly is one, Zaitsev? Maybe, but he really struggling so far this year.
      To bcola’s point, they don’t come cheap.
      Marner would get you one.
      The Leafs will score enough most of the time, they need to keep it out of their net.

      • Should have read top pair D-Man

      • Curious that Zaitsev is seeing no PP time this season. Last season he was a staple on 1 of the 3 balances units Tor likes to roll out.

      • Sorry should read 2 not 3. Missing my BlackBerry. Ha-ha!

      • Ya Striker, I think it is similar to Marner, in Babcock’s doghouse. Which I get, he hasn’t played well from everything I have watched and read.
        Set the tone early, which is what McLennan has been trying to do in Edmonton.
        Problem with the Oil now is they don’t have room for that anymore, they need their best players in the top spots because they so are desperate for points.
        Oilers are tough to figure this year.

      • Zaitsev is not a good dman as much as leaf fans sugar coat him he is average to below avg

      • Oilers are easy to figure out. They’ve become a one line perimeter line.

        They got little net front presence in the offensive zone. Watch McDavid try and do it all on his own and forgot how to really crash a net and dig out a goal.

        In the defensive end, they are loose and soft. Teams aren’t afraid to go hard at them in the corners and forcheck.

        You’d think having guys like Lucic that this wouldn’t be the case but they need to get guys with good hands that are willing to crash the net and screen tenders.

        Insteand of them all spreading out to get the awesome pass from McDavid as he does his magic.

  12. I didn’t say trade all dead weight for top, top players. Trade dead weight and replace with players who can forecheck, hit and play with passion.

    • So the other GMs you expect to take that “dead weight” are too stupid in your estimation to recognize them as such?

  13. Unless the Leafs are getting a Provorov type defenseman in return for Marner now, you wait. He will turn his play around, hes too dynamic. I know Kadri is used as a shutdown but I don’t see why Marner and Kadri can’t be the start of a good second line with say JVR on left. That’s a good mix of grit and skill. Maybe that’s how it was at the start of the year, I’m not sure.

    I’d move Price if there is a market for him. The bad thing is if he controls his movement, only a handful of teams can take his extension and most of them are not contending right now. That makes me think he would refuse to go to such teams.

    • Marner will be fine. Not all players just develop progressively on an up hill pattern. Some regress at different times. Marner is a great young hockey player with a bright future. I wouldn’t worry so much about today.

      Players like Hyman & Briwn are far more proficient defensively & Briwn has untapped offensive abilities. A far better 2 way player than Marner is today.

      Babcock is giving Marner a little hard love. Could Tor try to move him as they have tons of forwards & more than enough to drive offence? Possibly but he’s not returning a Dman if the quality being varied about here lik a Hanafin or Provorov. These 2 Dman are worth more than a Marner today. Tomorrow? Things can change Provorov is Phi’s #1 Dman now & Hanafin plays significant minutes in a top 4 roll.

      Virtually unattainable baring extenuating circumstances.

      • Striker, I don’t agree and would not be trading Marner for Hanafin or Provorov. I get the Leafs need a top end defenceman, and these two guys may get there. From my perspective, Marner has elite skill. When you translate elite skill, you have a shot at a superstar. Neither Hanafin nor Provorov IMO have elite skill level and again IMO have very little chance of becoming super stars. Stars maybe, but not superstars. The Leafs will find another route, or develop from within. We’re 2 years away from a true cup contender and I get we’re not getting there without one more top end D-guy. I trust our management will find him and not at the expense of Marner.

      • Marner will never be a superstar he is knocked off the puck very easy, good player but no way a superstar that’s blue and white glasses talk