NHL Rumor Mill – December 4, 2017

by | Dec 4, 2017 | Rumors | 46 comments

The coaches of the Red Wings and Flyers are on the hot seat plus the latest on Jacob Trouba in your NHL rumor mill. 


FANRAG SPORTS NETWORK: Chris Nichols cited NHL insider Elliotte Friedman’s Friday appearance on Calgary’s Sportsnet 960 discussing trade and free-agent topics. Among the notable subjects was the status of Winnipeg Jets defenseman Jacob Trouba, who becomes a restricted free agent next July with arbitration rights. Friedman believes Trouba likes playing in Winnipeg and playing on the right side of their defense, adding the only time the blueliner seems to get upset is when he’s shifted to the left side. 

“I just think on Trouba they let it play out. They see how they do, and they take a stab at signing him long term. And I think they’ll see if they can do it,” said Friedman. Based on conversations with other hockey people, he believes as long as Trouba’s getting lots of minutes playing on the right side, “he’s not a guy with a problem.” 

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Trouba was a hot topic in the rumor mill through the summer and early autumn of 2016. At one point, his agent requested a trade from the Jets before agreeing on Nov. 7, 2016, to a two-year, $6-million contract.

The assumption persists that the 23-year-old wants out of Winnipeg at the first opportunity and could set an outrageously high contract demand next summer to force the issue. But the Jets are a team on the rise and Trouba’s been a solid contributor to their success thus far in 2017-18.

While it’s certainly possible his next round of contract talks could get contentious, a strong showing by the Jets this season could perhaps lead to less heated negotiations between the two side. 


PHILLY.COM: Sam Carchidi wonders if the slumping Philadelphia Flyers upcoming Western Canadian road trip could decide the fate of embattled head coach Dave Hakstol. The Flyers have dropped 10 straight games and looked listless in their last two contests. Flyers GM Ron Hextall has stood by Hakstol but could feel pressure to replace him if the Flyers fail to snap out of their tailspin. Former NHL coaches Darryl Sutter and Dave Tippett are being mentioned as possible replacements. 

MLIVE.COM: Ansar Khan suggests Detroit Red Wings coach Jeff Blashill could be feeling the heat. The Wings are winless in seven straight games, including a humiliating 10-1 thrashing at the hands of the Montreal Canadiens on Saturday. If the Wings fall to the Jets on Tuesday, Khan speculates a coaching change could be in order. GM Ken Holland has confirmed he’s has trade talks but feels the solution to their woes must come from within. 

Khan also notes the Wings have a lot of underachieving players carrying hefty contracts with no-trade clauses. “Their tradable commodities are talented young forwards Anthony Mantha, Dylan Larkin, Andreas Athanasiou and their first-round pick. But it makes no sense for a team that has no realistic chance of competing for the Stanley Cup to sacrifice part of its future.”

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Firing the coaches is easier to do than trading players, especially at this point in the season. The Flyers and Red Wings are struggling and won’t get much help in the trade market from rival GMs hoping to exploit them. Those in touch with the Flyers and Wings want their good young affordable talent, not their aging, expensive veterans. If a trade could be made to snap those clubs out of their respective swoons they would’ve happened by now. 

Of the two, Hakstol could be the first to go. Hextall’s been patient but that long losing streak is putting significant pressure on him. 



  1. Lucky Ed Snyder is no longer around in Philadelphia or it would be a blood bath. They have to do something and it is usually the coach.
    Detroit did not have much expectation coming into the season.

    • No ill will intended Silverscreen but did you expect Philly to make the playoffs this season?

      I had them better than Det, Flo, Buf & fighting it out with Ott, Car & Mon, with Car coming out on top & fighting for a playoff spot, Darling has killed that hope unless he seriously improves his play.

  2. I don’t want anything I say to come off as defending Dave Hakstol because I think he’s a terrible coach and they’d be wise to fire him, but Hextall hasn’t done any sort of amazing job there, either.

    Was Nolan Patrick really the second best player in last year’s draft or was he the highest ranked/most hyped CHL player? And can Hextall and his staff tell the difference?

    He’s destroying both Wayne Simmonds’ value to his own team and his trade value by sticking him on a line with an 18 year old kid in way over his head instead of a legit NHL center.

    And somehow he didn’t realize that Brian Elliot is a lousy goalie and instead signed him to be their starter?

    Now, personally, I think they should give both Hakstol and Hextall ten year extensions, but…I’m a Pens fan, so…

    • Hextall has drafted a solid prospect core at D, in net & in Patrick & Rubatsov 2 solid young forwards, moving Schenn is part of the rebuild Hextall started when he took over as GM in 2014.

      I’m not sure what people were expecting from Philly this season, did anyone here have them to be a playoff team this season?

      This is not to defend Hakstol, not a fan, nor specifically to defend Hextall but he’s been GM for 3 years & you can’t judge anyone on that short a time frame.

    • Have you ever seen the Flyers win the Stanley Cup???

      • Actually twice once beating my Bruins in 74. Just before my 8th birthday.

        I’m still waiting for Vancouver the closest team to where I now live & 10 other teams who haven’t yet accomplished the feat.

        At least Philly won 2 back to back in the early 70’s.

  3. Gotta think the senators are gonna have to make some kinda moves soon, they have been playing some terrible hockey! I know they didn’t want to pay Turris but the swap for him and duschene definitely isn’t working out

    • Agreed but easier said than done. Making trades mid season to acquire anyone that can truly help is very challenging & you have to give to get. What does Ottawa give up to salvage their season at this point?

      Not directed at you Bigbear but on topic & food for thought.

      Ottawa has played 14 games at home, 11 on the road, they have only played 5 of 19 back to backs, they have 14 more to go, 5 in the month of March! Prior to the start of this road trip they hadn’t been an onerous road trip, they have played 3 games on this 7 game trip so far, Mtl, NYI & Win but now head to Anh, LA, SJ & Buf. Of the 25 games they have played so far this season only 10 have been against teams that made the playoffs last season.

      Only 2 other teams have had as soft a schedule so far this season, NJ & Vegas. This isn’t a good team, Ott rolled the dice that there young D was ready to shoulder more responsibility, they weren’t, nor did they add help to the forward lines this summer, the only move made was recently, a lateral move from Turris to Duchene, learning to play Boucher’s system is challenging. I didn’t have Ott to make the playoffs, Oduya can’t replace Methot & other than that what was done to try & improve this team this summer, Thompson?

      Sorry George.

      • No skin off my nose. They turn it around – fine. They don’t – I don’t lose any sleep over it. One way or the other, they’ll all make more money in one season than any of us will have seen seen in a lifetime

      • Except me. Chrisms

      • The schedule was far from soft.

        It seems you think a schedule busy with games is tougher than a schedule lacking games.

        Ottawa had pretty much a week off as they travelled to sweden. Another week off as thet travelled back from sweden. That extended time off wrecked any flow and chemistry they developed since training camp. Teams are flying at midseason form and as a result of Ottawa’s schedule they are struggeling ro find their game.

        I wish they had a busier schedule. Things be much easier.

        Makingg the Turris/duchene swap at the start of this didnt seem ro help.

        Ottawa doesnt need to make a trade for help. Bring up their youth. Play white and brown. How worse could it of been if they played them 9 games ago?

        One knock on Boucher is his refusal to play youth.

      • They can’t play Brown, Jeff – except in a dire emergency, as he is back in junior with Windsor. Same with Formenton who’s back in London.

        What they’re going through now is the result of certain players still reluctant to buy totally into Boucher’s tight system. They did that in spurts last year too, but got into the playoffs where all finally adhered to the “system.”

        It’s a long schedule and things do tend to balance out.

    • Sure does not look that way. Two weeks ago we were saying the same with the habs but I guess playing a few crap teams will get you back in the picture! Ottawa should come around

      • I wasn’t saying that about the Habs 2 weeks ago. I said as the schedule balances out & Mtl gets to play some soft competition, their home & away games start to balance out & Price returns they should return to the playoff race coming up short at seasons end.

        Few teams had a tougher schedule out of the gate than Mtl. No 1 had a tougher 1 than Pit.

        I don’t like the D Bergevin has built, scoring is a concern, the lack of centers a bigger 1 as Drouin isn’t at C at least not today but with Price the best goalie in the world anything is possible. Nor did I really enter the trade banter about Price being moved except to say slim to non existent not the least of which is that contract.

      • The last 20 games the habs have one of the top 3 records in the league, the defense is looking very now takes a few games with only 3 defenseman returning. Losing beaulieu and emelin was addition by subtraction

      • Could really see the leafs dropping down and the habs battling Tampa for the division, the leafs have had a lot of luck early this season and should drop soon

      • Lets not get to excited 4 of these 5 wins have come against, Buf twice, Ott & Det. The schedule is balancing out but 2/3rd’s of the season still to play.

        Mtl shouldn’t have been as bad as they were, scheduling, adversity, injuries, etc.

        Over 82 games things have a way of balancing out & being what they should be at least 80% of the time. Ha-ha!

        I still don’t have Mtl to make the playoffs, they should be in the battle for a wildcard spot but when all is said & done just miss.

        I may well be wrong & my personal bias being a Bruins fan & hating the hardship Montreal has brought to bare on Boston clouding my judgement. Ha-ha!

      • I’m not talking over the past 4-5 games take a look at the last 20 the habs have one of the best records

    • I am putting Duchene in the same category as James Neal when he was traded to Pittsburgh. Awful those last 20 games of the season and most fans were calling for him to be dumped in the off season. But his talent shone through and he was awesome from game 1 the following season. Duchene has talent and arguably more than Turris. I would give him 25-40 games to get settled and accustomed to things as Striker mentioned before we can see if he will be a bust or not.

    • The biggest problem with the Sen’s is the internal budget.
      If your team who refuses to spend to the cap there’s very little chance of making the play-offs. I know, I know look at last year. But they are not as good of a team as they were last year.. Should be interesting once they have to sign Eric. My guess is they trade him by the summer. They are not going to pay him $11 mill a year, and that’s about what it will cost.

      • Hellooooo! The Sens sit 12th in a 31 team league with current cap space of $2,609,191. Teams with MORE cap space than them includes LA, Columbus, NJ,m NYI, NYR AND Tampa – not spending to the cap doesn’t seem to be hurting them.

  4. I always chuckle when I see the word Hextall and patient…I watched him too much being a goalie I think ha

    • Can you see him in net today with the way forwards crash the net? Blue paint mayhem.

    • Striker, sorry my comment was not directed at you.

      • Don’t worry shticky nobody cares what you say🤪

  5. Bring back Bobby Clarke.

    • You mean Bobby “I didn’t give him cancer” Clarke? The master of tact?

      • Or how about the Bobby “The Philadselphia Flyers are proud to select – what’s his name again???” Clarke when drafting Claude Giroux.

  6. Bring back Mike Keenan.

    • George, don’t forget Bobby Clarke’s “little tap” to Karlamov’s ankle during the Summit Series. Might have been the TSN turning point.

      • Yeah, really classic move on a player who was heads and shoulders above him in the talent department.

  7. If Trouba wants out the Bruins should take another run at him I believe they would have the pieces Winnipeg would want and need. Chara is slowing down and Trouba would be a nice replacement.

    • All just a question of cost & his salary expectations for me but would love to have him as a Bruin but wishful thinking really.

      When Win moves Trouba the haul will be amazing & I’m not certain as a Bruins fan I want to incur that cost & then his huge salary demands. Bos is probably better served to just continue the rebuild on the fly letting Carlo, McAvoy & the other Dman coming to continue developing & settle into the roles they will eventually play at the NHL level.

      • Agree would love Trouba in Boston but Mcavoy is the number one right side guy. Would cost Carlo plus a lot more.
        Salary would be a problem in Boston.

  8. Is Trouba happy with his deployment? He sits 2nd to Buffy in TOI/GP, less than a min per game ahead of Myers but barely makes the top 10 in PP TOI/GP.

    If Trouba forces a move where ever he goes he will go from playing 2nd fiddle to Buffy to the #1 Dman in all situations. Apparently Trouba has marketing ambitions & good luck marketing yourself in North America playing in Winnipeg.

    I’m not saying he won’t resign in Winnipeg just that for me it’s highly unlikely he does unless via arbitration award.

    • I see him going to Detroit at some point.

  9. Moving Giroux to LW has left wing & trading Schenn has left Phi with no 1 to center the 2nd line, hanging Simmonds out to dry with no 1 to play with. Patrick isn’t ready to play this role & Filppula & Lehtera are #3 C’s at best. Giroux should be moved back to C so Phi can at least try to ice 2 scoring lines & not just 1.

    As for Blashill I have been complaining about his player personal choices since day 1. Holland was a great GM but he’s well past his best before date. The reigns should have been handed over to someone else by now. His loyalty to players as seriously delayed a rebuild that should have started at least 2 years ago, if not 3.

  10. Travis Yost at TSN took an analytical run at the next contracts for Drew Doughty and Eric Carlsson. It is worth a look, as sobering as it is for Kings and Sens fans.

  11. Correct me if I’m wrong, but the maximum a player can get on latest CBA is 20% of the cap. If the cap goes to $80 million by next year, Doughty and Karlsson could ask for $16 million at 20% or $12 million for 15%. I’m guessing the number will be between 10.5 and 11.5 per year. The reality is that for their current clubs, if they don’t pay them the going rate, someone else will. Neither club has anyone near their abilities, so unless they trade for cheaper players, they would have to be satisfied with losing premiere blue liners for perhaps plugging holes elsewhere. However, as some have pointed out here, its not the big contracts for the elite players that are creating problems, its the inflated contracts of mediocre or underperforming players (many who are aging and carry no trade clauses). Even at top level contracts, you can move elite players but the bad contracts are the ones no one wants.

    Unless you are swapping Nathan Horton for David Clarkson of course.

  12. Botteril makes a solid move…getting Scott Wilson from Detroit for a 5th round pick.

    The Sabres bottom six is terrible, he could play on their third line easily.

    Nothing great, but a solid player.

  13. Right now the Jets are Cup contender. They have an amazing attack up front and great defense. The goaltending is finally catching up. They are where they should be and should not even consider dealing Trouba. They have two years with him on their team to go for it all. Yes, the West is tough but so are the Jets. They could easily be this year’s Nashville; although they seem to be having a better regular season than Nashville did last year.

  14. Minor trade but Botterill gets Scotty Dubs back for pennies on the dollar. I think Wilson was too talented to play in Detroit’s bottom 6 where they like overpaid duds like Helm, Glendening and Adbelkader. Wilson was drowning in Detroit after playing some of last year on a line with Malkin and Kessel. Botterill knows him well and this move should help the Sabres a little bit. Not a big move or one that is going to change fortunes but solid never-the-less.

    • 17 games with DET and no points…..definitely NOT too talented for DET.

    • Wow…

  15. If the Leafs actually fall out of contention this season, or perhaps it is more likely in the offseason, I would like to see them trade van Riemsdyk and Komarov and give Josh Leivo and Kasperi Kapanen a shot. It is way beyond Leivo’s time to be given an opportunity that isn’t on the fourth line, where he cannot work his offensive skills into his game as easily…

    Just had a thought. Let’s hear some opinions on these players’ value. The Leafs have apparently been looking at Ian Cole. Whether or not he has been a scratch in a few games lately, when he is on, he is a decent defenceman. Is Komarov really second line good? Maybe playing with Malkin and Kessel he is. You could then have Guentzel center the third line and play Sheahan where he belongs. Apologies to Ryan Reaves, but he gets bumped. I can’t believe Rutherford wanted him more than Klim Kostin. At some point the Penguins will have a future to play out.

  16. On a side note as far as coaches are concerned. I would keep an eye on Calgary and their next few performances. If Gulutzan starts loosing control of this team, Brad Treliving has close ties with Dave Tippett.