NHL Rumor Mill – October 2, 2018

by | Oct 2, 2018 | Rumors | 26 comments

Latest on the Islanders, Lightning and Canucks in your NHL rumor mill.


NEWSDAY: The free-agent status of top-six forwards Anders Lee, Jordan Eberle and Brock Nelson are among Andrew Gross’ five things to watch for the New York Islanders this season. He believes they cannot allow those three to depart as UFAs without compensation as they did with John Tavares this summer. General manager Lou Lamoriello could face some tough decisions by the Feb. 25, 2019 trade deadline.

New York Islanders could face a tough decision with pending free agents such as Anders Lee. (Photo via NHL Images)

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Player and team performance will determine the fates of those three. Of the trio, Nelson could be most likely to be shopped if he fails to impress as their second-line center. 

Big seasons from Lee and Eberle could land them new contracts with the islanders, but that will also depend upon how much they’re seeking. Lee is earning $3.75 million annually on his current contract and could look to double that, while Eberle is earning $6 million per season and could try to stay in that neighborhood. 


THE ATHLETIC: Joe Smith reports the Tampa Bay Lightning have tried to move a defenseman, telling teams they’re open to trading Slater Koekkoek or Braydon Coburn. It remains to be seen if a deal will be made. For now, they’ve sent promising Erik Cernak to their AHL affiliate in Syracuse. Both blueliners still hold depth value for the Lightning. Of the two, Smith thinks Koekkoek could be more open to a change of scenery.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: I think Koekkoek is the most likely trade candidate, as he’s younger (24), lacks no-trade protection and carries an affordable $865K salary this season. That move might not happen right away but could take place later this season, especially if there’s a need to create more room on a crowded blueline. He could be an affordable blueline depth acquisition for a rival club as the season unfolds. 


THE ATHLETIC: Jason Brough feels the Vancouver Canucks placing Sam Gagner on waivers could be a warning of more moves to come. He wonders if veterans Brandon Sutter and Alexander Edler become trade candidates later this season. He acknowledges Edler has a no-trade clause but perhaps he’d waive it if he were told in no uncertain terms that he wasn’t getting re-signed.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: If Gagner clears waivers today they could send him down to their AHL affiliate or attempt to trade him. He’s signed through 2019-20 with an annual cap hit of $3.15 million, which could make clubs leery of claiming him. Even via trade, the Canucks could be asked to absorb part of that cap hit. 

Sutter will be a tough sell. Cap Friendly indicates he carries a $4.375-million cap hit through 2020-21 with a full no-trade clause this season. Edler, on the other hand, should attract plenty of interest near the trade deadline if he’s willing to waive his no-trade. 



  1. Re TBay and potential D trade.

    As I mentioned yesterday .., I don’t see a trade now (in next 2 weeks) of either Koekkoek or Coburn but if/when it happens … concur that Koekkoek will be easier to trade and provide more in return.

    As at right now Cap Friendly still showing TBay with 12F and 7 D…. so if they move one of those D… their likely to ask for a young Fwd coming back. Most teams start their 23 man roster with 7 or 8 D and 13 or 14 Fwds. Moving a D for a D at this time is less probable than moving a D for a forward AND bringing up a young D that was already in training camp.

    Koekkoek would be a nice depth add on most teams

    • Just to add … trade to Western team more likely …. spitballing … with Schmidt out in Vegas …. depth add of Koekkoek… send back Carpenter + 3rd rounder (Nashville’s or Winnepeg’s)???

    • Jordan Eberle is the PERFECT example of the situation that Nylander is going through.

      Eberele even at $6 million when he was given it was a question mark …then after a year or two he was to expensive and didnt fit in with team or cap structure.

      ..Nylander at $7- $8 million plus is going down that exact road.

      And Eberel is the perfect example guy on why you don t give Nylander an $8 million dollar contract…even after 8 season 6 of them at 20 plus goals I am not paying Eberel $8 million so why do it for Nylander, this is most likely the same production you will get with Nylander after 6 years!

      How about the Oilers picking up a Koekkoek…they could use another depth young D man ..if anymore D men get hurt in Edmonton they will be in dire trouble on the back side !

      Couburn will be a trade deadline deal …no team needs his cap hit for production till then …they still have training camp players that they can still evaluate around the league in game play before a team needs to pick that guy up …he will be moved at either the USA Thanksgiving depending who is on the cusp and in the mix and what teams evaluations have been on the current roster players ..but Tampa may have to sweeten the deal with a depth draft pick to make it work….

      I see a Team like the Devils in on Coburn in time.

      • Kal El

        Yep …. Koekkoek to Ed would be a prudent pick up …. what Fwd would be going back in your opinion?

  2. I just dont see Edler waiving his no trade clause, but I could be wrong. As far as overpaid third line centers go, Sutter is decent for a team with cup aspirations as a trade deadline pickup however what would he actually bring back? A 3rd and 5th rounder? Maybe if he has an excellent start to the season a 2nd?

    • a 2nd round pick for Brandon Sutter? another delusional fanboy …

      • He qualified the statement with “if he has an excellent start to the season” and phrased it as a question….

        Another internet toughguy with nothing better to do than troll people. Find somewhere else to be a douchebag.

  3. I can see the flyers showing interest in Colburn if their defence struggles out of the gate. Philip Myers had a rough camp and will need another year in the minors. A veteran defenceman who is mobile would be a great asset right now. Haag is solid, but needs a puck moving veteran to pair with. This would be a nice 5/6 pair. Flyers have plenty of cap Room and can sit McDonald or Gudas.

    • Colbourn will not end up in Philly. He was traded from Philly to Tampa, when he was in Philly he was booed relentlessly because he was a worse turnover machine than either Gudas or Mac D.

      • He was traded away from the Flyers for salary cap relief, not performance.

  4. Nobody thats sane would trade for Sutter. He gets 4 million per season, cant skate, doesnt score and doesnt check anybody. I could see someone offeringba bag of week old bagels for Gagner however, he of the 8 point night. Perhaps Gagner has one of Strikers infamous “bounce back” seasons in him, doubtful though.

    If Im the Flyers I pass on Cobourn, hes already been an epic failure in Philly once and theres no reason to belive hed be any better the second time around.

  5. What would anyone guess Brock Nelson’s trade value is? He’s a solid, if possibly underwhelming, player, heading into UFA status. I can’t even guess – does that get you a high pick? A #4 dman? What?

    • Hi Paddy

      I’m assuming you mean at TDL and not now…. either way there is no way I can see a top 4D coming back.

      Value added is that he can play wing and centre and has size. I do believe he’ll pace (PPG) at better clip than last couple of years … if he does; late first is a possibility (slim but possible)

      • Thanks, Pengy! Yeah, I was thinking either TDL or now (knowing the returns would be different).

        Provided he’s healthy and performing ok, a 2nd rounder seems like a steal, but a 1st rounder seems high.

        That said, I don’t know him *super* well as a player. Was curious to hear others’ opinions!

    • Nelson is 6 foot 3 and according to my various excel files and acclaimed formulas right at the breakout point for a guy his size – which of course is 400 games.
      Watch out for him to get about 60 points this year.

      I miss Striker

      • Taz, Nice reference though.

    • Nelson has career stats of 398 gp 99 goals 89 assists and 188 pts with a season high 26g (along with 14 as for 40 pts).

      Mike Hoffman has career stats of 342 gp 107 goals – 122 assists for 230 pts. He went from Ottawa WITH a 5th rounder to SJ for Boedker, Bergman and a 6th rd pick. 2 hours later he was dealt to Florida with a 7th rd pick for a 4th and 5th and a 2nd in 2019.

      Drama aside, I can’t see Nelson attracting much more than that sort of return. Doubt very much anyone gives up a 3./4 D-man for him.

      • He still has 2 more games to go before he’s fully developed! In those 2 games he’ll become a “stud” yada yada yada!

    • Karlsson didn’t bring back a top4 D, so no;

      B.Nelson will not be doing that, not even close.

  6. Pengy or Kal-El – according to the waiver wire Carolina has plucked McElhinney while the Flyers snagged Pickard – so who do you see becoming the Marlie’s goalie and first call-up in the event of an injury to either Anderson or Sparks in Toronto?

    • Wow… if that’s true McAdam and Kiskasiou (sp?) have prob less than 50 AHL games and 0 NHL games between them

      I’m guessing McAdam

      Boy if you’re right …. big hurt

      • Real issues in goal for the Leafs. I was hoping they would draft Erikson Ek last year in the draft but they grabbed Ian Scott – still, they could have nabbed both. Think Eriksson Ek went 6th or 7th round to Anaheim

      • I suppose the philosophical way of looking at it is, had they kept McElhinney and tried to send Sparks down, both he and Pickard would have been claimed anyway and they’d be in the same situation going forward this season. Are there any goalies still floating around unsigned who could be a veteran presence with the Marlies?

    • Good!

      I can’t wait to see when Sparks HAS to play!

  7. Hey all,

    Does anyone know what “NHL non roster” means; Cap Friendly has Calvin Pickard on the transactions page listed as “NHL non roster”. What does this designation mean for the 23 man opening roster?

  8. Means Pickard was on waivers I believe. His status currently is unknown as to what team he will be on.