NHL Rumor Mill – October 29, 2018
Should the Kings make a pitch for William Nylander? Could the Panthers look for a goaltender? Will the Oilers trade Zack Kassian? Get the latest in your NHL rumor mill.
SHOULD KINGS PURSUE NYLANDER?
TORONTO SUN: In his weekend sports column, Steve Simmons suggested the struggling Los Angeles Kings should look into acquiring restricted free agent forward William Nylander and maybe defenseman Jake Gardiner from the Toronto Maple Leafs. He also proposes Leafs general manager Kyle Dubas should “inquire about getting Drew Doughty to waive his no-trade clause and see if you get him in some kind of sign and trade for Nylander and Gardiner.”
SPECTOR’S NOTE: Simmons acknowledges his proposal probably won’t happen though he thinks it’s a deal that would help both clubs. While I agree this scenario is unlikely to happen, I wouldn’t find it crazy if Kings GM Rob Blake was monitoring the Nylander situation in case the Leafs decide to put the young forward on the trade block.
I don’t see Blake approaching Doughty about waiving his no-trade clause but maybe the Kings GM pitches Alec Martinez or Jake Muzzin for Nylander? Of course, I’m just spitballing here but both blueliners recently surfaced in the rumor mill.
WILL THE PANTHERS SEEK A GOALIE?
Simmons also noted the Carolina Hurricanes and Philadelphia Flyers are each carrying three goaltenders. “How long before Curtis McElhinney and Calvin Pickard are placed on waivers again? And can the Florida Panthers afford to pass on either of them?”
SPECTOR’S NOTE: McElhinney (3 wins in four starts, 2.76 GAA, .892 SP ) would be an upgrade over the Panthers’ current tandem of James Reimer (3.41 GAA, .878 SP) or Michael Hutchinson (4.18 GAA, .839 SP). His stats are also better than Pickard’s 4.75 GAA and .833 SP. Whether McElhinney goes on waivers soon remains to be seen. The Panthers could also prefer waiting for Roberto Luongo to return soon from a knee injury.
NO TAKERS FOR KASSIAN?
EDMONTON JOURNAL: Kurt Leavins weighed in with his thoughts on a recent report from Sportsnet indicating the Oilers have given struggling winger Zack Kassian permission to talk to other clubs about a trade out of Edmonton. He believes GM Peter Chiarelli has already shopped Kassian.
While Leavins believes teams such as the Carolina Hurricanes, Florida Panthers and Tampa Bay Lightning could use some toughness, Chiarelli hasn’t found any takers for a winger who is “a journey-man over-paid for the role he fills, with skills that fit the league better 5 years ago, and with a checkered past that not all organizations will be willing to take a chance on.”
SPECTOR’S NOTE: Can’t disagree with Leavins assessment of Kassian, who also wonders if the Oilers might try putting the winger on waivers. Kassian had some trade value once upon a time but he no longer fits into today’s faster-paced game.