Latest Oilers and Flames Speculation – March 23, 2018
Could the Edmonton Oilers and Ottawa Senators swing a trade this summer? Wil the Calgary Flames shop for a first-round draft pick? The latest in your NHL rumor mill.
WILL THE OILERS AND SENATORS MAKE AN OFFSEASON DEAL?
FANRAG SPORTS NETWORK: Chris Nichols cited Darren Dreger’s Thursday morning appearance on Edmonton’s TSN 1260 discussing the Ottawa Senators and Edmonton Oilers, who faced off against each other later that evening. Dreger noted the trade chatter linking the Oilers to Senators winger Mike Hoffman leading up to last month’s NHL trade deadline. While the Senators are retooling instead of rebuilding, Dreger doesn’t rule out the possibility of Hoffman becoming available this summer if the Sens decide to move assets under contract beyond this season.
Bob McKenzie, meanwhile, appeared on Ottawa’s TSN 1200 where he was asked about the possibility of the Oilers and Senators making a mutually beneficial trade this summer. He noted the recent speculation linking the two clubs arising from Senators general manager Pierre Dorion’s appearance at a couple of Oilers games. That sparked some media talk suggesting a swap of Hoffman for Ryan Nugent-Hopkins but McKenzie doesn’t think there was anything to it. He also doesn’t know if the two clubs will make a deal this summer. “Your guess is as good as mine on that one,” he said.
SPECTOR’S NOTE: While anything’s possible, the Senators appeared reluctant to move Hoffman before the trade deadline. As McKenzie pointed out, Hoffman’s developed a solid chemistry with center Matt Duchene and left wing Ryan Dzingel. Sens management could prefer keeping that line intact beyond this season. While there’s a belief the Oilers could peddle Nugent-Hopkins this summer for a scoring winger or a defenseman, he was among the few bright spots in an otherwise forgettable season for Edmonton. They could explore other ways to address their roster needs without moving RNH.
LATEST FLAMES SPECULATION
SPORTSNET: In his latest “31 Thoughts” column, Elliotte Friedman reports the word out of the recent NHL general managers’ meetings is Calgary Flames GM Brad Treliving will look to add a first-round pick in the 2018 NHL Draft. The Flames dealt their pick last June to the New York Islanders as part of the trade that brought defensman Travis Hamonic to Calgary.
FANRAG SPORTS NETWORK: Chris Nichols cited Pierre LeBrun’s appearance Wednesday on Toronto’s TSN 1050 discussing the Flames disappointing season. He thinks Treliving faced a lot of pressure leading up to the recent trade deadline to bolster the Flames’ scoring. However, he likely found the asking prices for players such as Montreal’s Max Pacioretty and Ottawa’s Mike Hoffman to be quite expensive.
SPECTOR’S NOTE: The Flames have gone into a free-fall over the last month, dropping nine of their last dozen games to tumble well out of playoff contention. While they won’t blow up the roster, they must bolster their secondary scoring and bring in a reliable backup goaltender for starter Mike Smith.
Pursuing a first-round pick could cost the Flames a young player off their current roster. Perhaps it could be part of a larger deal where the Flames also try to add some secondary scoring. Perhaps the Flames could instead consider another coaching change. While they certainly have a couple of roster issues to address, their recent tailspin suggests they could benefit from a different voice behind the bench.