NHL Rumor Mill – October 31, 2018

by | Oct 31, 2018 | Rumors | 60 comments

Latest on Tyler Myers,  Zack Kassian, Jesse Puljujarvi, Joshua Ho-Sang and (yes, again!) William Nylander in your NHL rumor mill.


NICHOLS ON HOCKEY: During an appearance on Vancouver’s TSN 1040, Darren Dreger was asked if the Toronto Maple Leafs might consider trading William Nylander if unable to get him re-signed and which clubs could become potential suitors. He noted colleague Pierre LeBrun pointed out the Carolina Hurricanes have an ongoing interest in Nylander.

Dreger also believes the Vegas Golden Knights definitely have interest, pointing out they have salary-cap space to sign him. He also raised the question of how much Nylander will sign for. “If he’s unwilling to budge off a $7.5-8-plus million Average Annual Salary, is Carolina willing to pay that? That doesn’t sound likely. What about Vegas or any other team that’s interested.”

TSN: Bob McKenzie reports there’s no sign of progress in contract talks between the Maple Leafs and Nylander. At the moment, the Leafs aren’t necessarily any closer to trading Nylander if they can’t sign him. However, the longer this continues the more teams could come calling about Nylander’s availability. 

SPECTOR’S NOTE: It’s one thing to speculate about which teams might have interest in Nylander. As Dreger and LeBrun have pointed out, the cost of signing him must also be taken into consideration. A club could be interested in Nylander but not at the cost of over $7.5 million per season on a long-term deal. If he’s unwilling to move from that, it will narrow the number of clubs pursuing him.

Jesse Puljujarvi’s status with the Edmonton Oilers is starting to attract attention. (Photo via NHL Images)


EDMONTON JOURNAL: Derek Van Diest reports Oilers winger Zack Kassian “was forced to put out the fire started by his agent Rick Curran this past weekend.” Over the weekend, reports emerged the Oilers had given Curran permission to explore trade options if his client wasn’t happy in Edmonton.

Kassian claims he never requested a trade and is still happy living and playing in Edmonton. He explained Curran called Chiarelli after he was a recent healthy scratch from the lineup to see what was going on. “They both acknowledged I’ve been off to a slow start and there has been an indirect conversation that other teams might be interested and he was granted permission to talk to them.”

SPECTOR’S NOTE:  The Oilers could move Kassian (who lacks no-trade protection) if they get a decent offer. I doubt they’ll get anything that can provide immediate help to the lineup. Unless Kassian requests a trade, he’s probably not going anywhere unless the Oilers fall out of playoff contention later in the season. By that point, they could be looking at shedding salary and would likely accept a draft pick or prospect. 

TSN: Darren Dreger reports it’s caught the attention of teams around the league that Oilers winger Jesse Puljujarvi has been a healthy scratch from several games. “That’s not to say Edmonton Oilers GM Peter Chiarelli’s phone is ringing off the hook, that’s not the case. And the Oilers are adamant they’re not going to trade Puljujarvi any time soon”. Dreger said what the Oilers need is for Puljujarvi to improve and lock down his roster spot.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Some promising prospects take longer to develop than others and that could be the case with the 20-year-old Puljujarvi. The last thing the Oilers want is to give up on him too soon and watch him blossom into a star elsewhere. Still, the longer it takes him to reach expectations the more he’s going to pop up in the rumor mill. 


TSN: Pierre LeBrun reports the Winnipeg Jets have no intention of trading Tyler Myers even if he’s still unsigned by this season’s trade deadline. The veteran defenseman is slated to become an unrestricted free agent in July. There haven’t been any contract discussions but Myers agent JP Barry recently met with Jets general manager Kevin Cheveldayoff to get some clarity on where things are.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: As LeBrun points out, the Jets are all-in this season as they hope to contend for the Stanley Cup. Unless thing goes wildly off the rails by the trade deadline I don’t see them shopping any of their pending free agents. 


NEW YORK POST: Brett Cyrgalis reports winger Joshua Ho-Sang feels he’s being buried within the New York Islanders system. He said the club told him they see him as a top-six forward but he’s not even playing that role with their AHL affiliate.

Ho-Sang feels the Isles made up their minds about what their club would look like and his role within it before training camp, as he didn’t see much action in preseason play. Crygalis points out Ho-Sang’s play away from the puck remains an issue as he has only four assists in nine games with Bridgeport with an ugly plus-minus of minus-eight.

NICHOLS ON HOCKEY: During an appearance on Vancouver’s Sportsnet 650, Elliotte Friedman was asked about Ho-Sang’s trade status. He believes it depends on the Islanders’ asking price. “I think there’s a lot of teams in the NHL that would be happy to trade for a guy who is talented and would be kind of a devalued asset on his second team, as long as the price wasn’t too high.”

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Ho-Sang’s brought a lot of this upon himself but he also might flourish with a change of scenery and the right coach. If the Isles try to trade him, however, I doubt they’ll get much back in return. He’s in the final season of his entry-level contract and at his current pace, he might not get a qualifying offer from the Isles next summer. For now, they’re probably going to stay patient with him and hope he starts showing real signs of consistent improvement. 




  1. Kassian: “They both acknowledged I’ve been off to a slow start” Yeah, like all of those fast starts he typically gets off on … lunkhead dinosaur on his way out …

    • That’s what I said about Brian Burke

    • Never mind a slow start, that makes it sound likes he has a fast finish. He’s averaged just over just over 7 goals a year over 7 seasons. Seems like he has a slow start, slow middle and slow finish. The Oilers have enough toughness without him, he’s really not an asset at any time.

      • He has one goal in 8 games, which is a pace for 10 goals over an 82 game season.

        In reality, for him, he is off to a fast start!

  2. A player of this type does not need to fight to be effective. Tim Wilson is a reckless type but make no mistake he carried a presence that keeps the opposition looking when he is on the ice. Fighting is out now along with head shots etc but let’s not pretend players of this type are ineffective.
    If he could not skate he would not be on the team. If Wilson was ineffective he would not have been afforded that contract.

    • With ya Ralph. Kassian can skate, always could. Doesn’t play fast though, the quick accurate puck movement can be a struggle.
      He was an asset in the playoffs in 17, scored some big goals and threw his body around on the fore check. Played well and brought momentum changing emotion to the game.
      Agree the Oil don’t really need him, problem is he makes too much ($2M) and you can’t trade.
      Shuffle him in and out of the line up keep him for the playoffs.

  3. Vegas is a team very much suitable for Nylander (low taxes) etc..

    Spitballing here: Nylander and Justin Holl (Babcock will never play him-ever).

    For: Alex Tuch and Colin Miller

    Cost certainty for Leafs and much needed skill set in Tuch as a power forward and Miller being a right Defenseman that can partner with Rielly until our prospects mature.

    And my take :
    Antoni on October 13, 2018 at 3:42 pm

    Nylander perhaps doesn’t want to play for the Toronto Maple

    and if so, just spitballing, Kyle Dubas should circle back to Carolina Hurricanes and ask for what it would take to acquire Brett Pesce – Cliff Pu!??
    William Nylander and someone like Justin Holl..??
    Pesce’s contract alone would provide the Leafs, the much needed cost certainty – for 6 more seasons. He’s able to log difficult minutes. A stay at home defenceman (much needed skill set) etc..https://editorinleaf.com/2017/01/27/toronto-maple-leafs-brett-pesce/
Cliff Pu is once a London Knight alumni and played with Mitchell Marner. He’s skilled and fits in the timeline of developing – utilizing assets from the system.
    It’s a win win for both clubs. Too bad Nylander is getting ” bad advice ” from rumours not corroborated. But I personally would prefer him as a TML , only time will tell if it is in fact outcome.
    Again I would prefer for Nylander to be a Toronto Maple Leaf going forward.
    This is becoming a distraction and silly/stupid for fans and haters alike… Different day but the same “news” cycle.

    • As an aside: Vegas deal allows the TML to fit in Gardiner to be re-signed as an UFA..

    • I’m sure if Vegas comes offering Miller and Tuch then that deal would be instantly completed but I doubt that is the case. Tuch seems like the real deal and Miller is a top 4 guy on most teams. The leafs would have to add a lot to get this done, and Holl isn’t a lot

    • Sounds pretty lopsided in both of those scenarios.
      Toronto probably won’t get that deal from Carolina for Nylander and a non roster tweener.
      More unlikely Vegas trades Tuch and Miller for the same return.
      I don’t think anyone is going to help Dubas out of this pickle.
      His best bet would to trade Matthews (plus) for a Number 1 defenseman and a top 6 forward with a sensible cap hit and term remaining on the deal.
      Isn’t he expendable with the Signing of JT for 11mil?
      How many #1 centers does a team need?
      Kadri scores 30 and not many other 2nd line centers do that.
      Austin Matthews is the Leafs golden ticket if said ticket is marketed and swapped properly.
      Just some food for thought.

      • Wow, that’s a new wrinkle. The return for Matthews would need to be huge. What would Arizona give them?

        P.S. What happened to Striker??

      • Yeah…..because trading an elite franchise center is how you build a team….

      • Trading Matthews is not on the table. You don’t trade Crosby once you have Malkin – not comparing the players just the situation.

      • K so if we say we are not comparing players and just the situation I’m not sure the Pens tried to low ball Malkin and trade him if he didn’t take the offer either.

      • They didn’t, Malkin has a higher AAV than Crosby. They were both treated like they should have been during contract negotiations and both were happy to sign their deals and don’t want to play for anyone else.

  4. If Nylander has two good or great playoff years then sure he’s worth 7-8 million but the guy was just soft and terrible in the playoffs, nothing is more important than having your best scorers being guys who will shine in the playoffs. He was softer than mink fur in the playoffs and he should be traded for a very good D man.

    • He did have a good showing in the 2017 playoffs, 2018 was a completely different story.

      I was wondering the other day, his play was ultra soft in that Boston series – it may have been because he didn’t want to get hit and lose out on his big day if he sustained an injury? Either way, agreed, he is soft and this standoff isn’t making me a fan of him anymore than I was this summer.

      Us leafs fans have short memories though, if he signs and lights it up all will be forgiven instantaneously.

      • Amazing that short memory thing and calling Nylander soft yet no mention of Matthews buttery texture vs. the Bruins? Incidentally didn’t Nylander produce more in those 7 games than the guy who’s missed or will miss nearly 2 months of hockey in the past calendar year with wonky shoulders that most seem to think is well worth nearly double the money Nylander was offered?

      • Jeez if we traded every Leaf who was soft in the playoffs last year all that would be left would be Kadri and Polak let’s not get to wrapped up in trading guys who didn’t look good in last year’s playoffs because there would be better candidates to trade for that big ol slow footed tough guy that people seem to think the Leafs so desperately need to throw a guy with tallent on Kijiji for

    • Ya Striker was was driven off by attacts from a few guys on this site. It’s too bad he was one of a few guys that was interesting and brought something to the table he was a decent guy.

      • I agree

      • I heard Striker is going to be in the new Top Gun movie!

  5. Not sure KASSIAN had to put out much of a fire – more of a flickering ember. Even if his agent did make noise about getting traded, I doubt anyone wants him much (if at all).

    And I can see teams trading for HO-SANG. I can see Ho-Sang getting some points in the NHL and being a decent NHLer. I also can see the team that trades for him regretting it in three years as he continues to play the “Why me?” card for the rest of his career. He seems totally unwilling to take responsibility for any decisions made about him or realize it means he needs to play better/change his attitude.

  6. A Nylander trade is still far off I think, mainly because the market for him is soft.
    The Vegas trade is too much for the Knights although the mediocre start might make them more active. As for trading Matthews? I always worry that the Leaf curse is on him…he will never actually become the star he is hyped to be? But he is 21 and it is too early to give up on him as either injury prone or not the real deal. Of greater concern is the way Babs uses him: ice time, overall attitude, ..is he the right coach for AM, for Mitch, for Kappy?

    • According to all the insiders half the NHL is rumoured to be interested in Nylander and he’s not even officially on the market yet. As far as Nylander being soft in the playoffs ask the Caps who they thought was the best Leaf player in their playoff series with Toronto. Tied for first and someone actually has the nerve to say Babs isn’t the right coach.

      • LeBrun was saying the Hurricane today asked to be called if he is on the table officially. I don’t think people understand when they
        argue that if the Leafs don’t think he’s worth it…the rest of the League isn’t contemplating 3-10 mill plus contracts in a year I think if the Leafs didn’t sign Tavares this deal is signed in September. There are other GMs out there more than willing to give a player like this 7+

  7. Ho-Sang the biggest change he may require is in attitude. By all reports he has top level talent and by all report he has a poor attitude and a me first attitude.
    I don’t see any team saying “hey this kid has a ton of talent and is an excellent player who can help us win today, so lets keep him in the minors!”
    He’s tied for 8th in scoring with 0 goals and a team worst -8 on the Bridgeport team.
    Play better and then you’ll gat an opportunity.

  8. Why not bring up Ho-Sang? Isles need speed try him bench Clutterbuck who skates in quicksand. See what he has if valuable you can keep him or trade him if his attitude is bad. Nothing to lose by giving him some minutes? When he was up a few years ago he was fast and entertaining you were on the edge of your seat.I can see trading him now for a 3rd round pick and him hitting 30 plus goals for someone else. Give him a shot.

    • Ho-Sang reminds me of Linus Omark. All kinds of offensive talent and skill.
      And a total liability in a team game, which is why there is no way a team managed by Lou is going to bring this guy up until he changes.
      Somebody will likely give a go for a late round pick. If he doesn’t change he can carve out a career in Europe. Clock is ticking.

  9. shoreorrpark
    The Sharks wanted Taveras, a first line center. They got Karlsson. Why not Karlsson for Matthews, a long time first line center.

    • Because the last place Karlsson would extend is Toronto. So all they’d be getting is a rental for the rest of this year.

      • Strange George, Karlsson has said that he was open to signing an extension with any of the Canadian teams even Toronto if he were to be traded to them. Either you`re wrong or Karlsson`s wrong. You must talk to Eric on a daily basis to know where he wants to play.

    • I’d run JT and Kadri as my 1-2.
      The return for Matthews would be better than the return for Nylander all day every day.
      Definitely a # 1-2 defenseman and a top six forward.
      The Leafs would then have an elite franchise #1 center in JT.
      A top tier #2 in Kadri, loads of scoring wingers to complement them, plus a true #1 dman meaning they can deploy Jake and Morgan where they should be.
      Again, just some food for thought.
      They brought JT in for a reason and there’s only so much money to go around.
      Matthews is a great young player, but I don’t think he’s busted 80 pts in a season yet, has he?
      I’d sell high on him and ask for an outlandish return.
      They just might get it.

      • For the record…
        I have no dog in the hunt with regards to any team that isn’t the Bruins.
        I dislike all of your favorite teams (except the Flames and Blues).
        I just enjoy discussing hockey with you folks.
        @George, what is your reasoning for Karlsson not signing in Toronto if a trade were to happen?
        Honestly curious as I have no clue as to
        why not other than lack of $ to go around.

      • So Matthews gets a #1-2 d and a top 6 forward.
        the raining MVP gets a #3 D maybe a 2B and nothing else??????

      • Honestly not that I see it happening I wouldn’t hate on the idea but I’m one of the few Leaf fans that doesn’t think Matthews is the second coming. Don’t get me wrong fantastic young talent but the talk of he’s this he’s that and so worth more than 12 mii? I’m not sure he’s on that level I am sure that I’d rather pay Nylander 8 than pay Matthews what’s being hinted towards and you’re right to add to a team the returns would be huge to restock and going forward…not the craziest thing I’ve read here today.

      • Karlsson does not like the intense attention playing in a city like Toronto would draw. It was bad enough in Ottawa! In SJ he can walk around on off days without being recognized (same thing that kept Perry in Anaheim) and it’ll be even better for him next season in TB – which is where I am convinced he has set his sights.

      • @George, That was the only other explanation I could come up with.
        100 phones and recording devices pointed at you, could make some very uncomfortable.
        It always looked to me like he enjoyed the attention though.
        A strikingly handsome man with a impish smile (According to Mrs.Shoreorrpark that is) is a great sell in any market.
        Up to him ultimately I suppose.

      • Ya it’s not a crazy idea, and I also don’t think Matthews is worth $12M. Plenty of folks on here disagreed with me when I said it.
        It would take a GM with massive nuts to make that deal. If it doesn’t work out, you’re fired. Hence most GM’s simply don’t pull the trigger on something like that.
        But if you think about it you could sign Karlsson as a UFA, and what you get for Matthews is …?
        If he gets offer sheeted for $12M take the bag of 1st RD picks and run?

      • He may have also just be tired of the drama in OTT.
        Wife being harassed, Melnyk being Melnyk and threatening to move the team, the crappy trade with Turris. Media swirl caused by that.
        Can’t blame him for wanting a fresh start.
        Also think he wants to go to TB. Some Cap issues to work out obviously. But they have 3 UFA D-men so some relief there. Just need to move Callahan.

      • I would Ray but I don’t even think I’d need to go that far if say Arizona wanted him back it would be silly not to listen if they were all in enough to throw out a 12-13 mill offer sheet to bring him home. At that point you have over a barrel OEL picks and/or prospects? It may benefit the team and keeping a pipe line full while boosting a need. Not to mention still have Marner Tavres Nylander Kadri, cap space…still a pretty full forward group an top pair guy on D with Riley….ahh to dream. I know I’m the minority but 2nd shoulder in about 8-9 months? 2 bad playoffs?
        12 mill long term? His quick start hasn’t really convinced me he is worth top 2 or 3 of the NHL money coming off entry deal. He maybe down the road but if someone was willing to see their soul I’d think you would need to listen

      • @Chad White.
        Not a fair comparison unless Chia is hired by the Leafs and orchestrates another mind boggling trade.
        No one in their right mind would trade Tyler, Taylor,Wheeler, Eberle and even Boychuk for the returns he got.
        He did well with Phil but who expected Toronto to be that bad the following seasons?
        Again, I would definitely sell high or stand pat and figure out who else ultimately gets traded off.

      • hey It’s the closet leaf fan shoreorrpark!

      • @ Bbb.
        Would you rather discuss the Bruins or your Habs?
        I’m just trying to generate and continue the conversation here bud.
        What do you bring?
        Rehtorical question of course….. we all know what you bring.
        Blind love for your Habs and nothing of any real merit or value.
        Good day.

      • And you just talk about your beloved leafs you aren’t fooling anyone! Good day

      • @ Bbb.
        Are you for real?
        Aren’t you also Bigbear?

      • Lol! Aren’t you also shticky ? I can spread fake news too

      • We are all Shticky.

  10. To replace quotes ads, we should have twitter mainpage and facebook mainpage directly on website.

    • Would this make the reading and responding better?
      Please explain.

      • Oh shore doesn’t know everything? Could have fooled me by the way he goes on

      • And guys wonder why Striker left.
        Why so personal?
        Or is it that you’re just not a nice person.
        I have my suspicions, but out of respect for all of the others, I’ll keep that to myself.

      • Says the guy that starts crap saying I’m a Habs fan!

      • It’s not even so much why people leave I would think it’s enough to keep people from posting…I know I got tired of him Shore so I imagine their are others that just don’t want to deal with the childish crap

      • Huh?

      • Lol wow! Really shticky? It’s funny shticky started posting again and striker left?

      • Don’t go down the rabbit hole boys.

      • Lol no worries Ray I’m done for the night cheers fellas

  11. I agree there are few guys like him on this site just looking to get a reaction. That’s there whole game.

  12. Bigbadbruins….put the candy bar down, Its past your bedtime….get back under your bridge!