NHL Rumor Mill – May 11, 2019

by | May 11, 2019 | Rumors | 31 comments

Check out the latest speculation regarding the Canucks, Canadiens, and Panthers in today’s NHL rumor mill. 


TSN: Appearing on Vancouver’s TSN 1040 last week, Ray Ferraro suggested the Ottawa Senators as a possible destination for Canucks winger Loui Eriksson. The 33-year-old winger has three years remaining on his contract with an annual average value of $6 million. Eriksson’s production and play has declined since joining the Canucks. He also recently indicated he and head coach Travis Green “don’t get along 100 percent.” 

Would the Ottawa Senators have interest in Vancouver Canucks winger Loui Eriksson? (Photo via NHL Images)

Eriksson will only be owed $9 million over the remainder of his deal once his $4 million signing bonus is paid on July 1. Ferraro speculated the winger could interest a budget club like the Senators that must reach the salary-cap minimum for 2019-20. 

SPECTOR’S NOTE: With the salary cap projected to reach $83 million, the cap minimum should exceed $60 million. Cap Friendly indicates the Senators have over $45 million invested in 14 players next season. Assuming restricted free agents Cody Ceci, Colin White, and Anthony Duclair are re-signed, the Senators must spend more to reach the cap floor. They might have interest in Eriksson but he’d have to waive his no-trade clause. 

SPORTSNET: Iain MacIntyre believes potential moves this summer to address the Canucks defense could depend upon Alexander Edler and Olli Juolevi. Edler could hit this summer’s free-agent market while a knee injury this season slow Juolevi’s development. If Edler re-signs and Juolevi and promising Quinn Hughes are NHL ready, general manager Jim Benning might only need to add one defenseman.

MacIntyre also speculated over potential UFA targets to boost their offense next season. He doesn’t anticipate they’ll pursue big-ticket forwards such as Columbus’ Artemi Panarin or Buffalo’s Jack Skinner. More affordable options could include San Jose’s Gustav Nyquist, Dallas’ Mats Zuccarello, Boston’s Marcus Johansson, or Columbus’ Ryan Dzingel. 

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Edler’s status will determine what moves Benning makes this summer to shore up the blueline. Someone like Nyquist or Zuccarello could be good short-term fits with the Canucks as their promising youngsters mature. Convincing either guy to join a rebuilding club at this stage of their respective career, however, is another matter.


SPORTSNET:  Eric Engels recently examined how the Montreal Canadiens can acquire a top-four left-side defenseman this summer. Toronto’s Jake Gardiner and Vancouver’s Alex Edler are the best options via free agency but they will be expensive.

Engels notes Canadiens GM Marc Bergevin has the assets in draft picks and prospects to acquire a long-term solution via the trade market. He suggested Philadelphia’s Shayne Gostisbehere or Florida’s Mike Matheson as possible options. He also proposed pitching gritty winger Andrew Shaw to the Calgary Flames for T.J. Brodie or to the Colorado Avalanche for Ian Cole. Another option could be the Islanders’ Thomas Hickey if Bergevin offered up winger Joel Armia.

Engels also believes Bergevin will attempt to sign a top-nine right-shot forward via free agency. Columbus’ Artemi Panarin, San Jose’s Joe Pavelski and the Islanders’ Jordan Eberle top that list. Other options could include Buffalo’s Jason Pominville, San Jose’s Joonas Donskoi, Washington’s Brett Connolly or Dallas’ Jason Spezza.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: The Canadiens desperately need a top-four left-side blueliner. If Gardiner or Edler hit the market, Bergevin could come calling.

Gostisbehere surfaced in this season’s rumor mill as a possible trade candidate. If the Flyers part with him, the asking price could be an established scoring forward. I doubt the Panthers will move Matheson, especially as they’re in the market for another blueliner. Brodie would be a good addition, though his power-play numbers are that high. Cole and Hickey won’t help their power play

I don’t think Panarin’s interested in coming to Montreal. Pavelski will likely re-sign with the Sharks. Eberle’s inconsistency is a concern. Connolly could be a good addition for the Habs. Spezza and Pominville are past their primes. 


THE ATHLETIC: George Richards looked at which players the Florida Panthers could target via free agency this summer. Their most pressing need is goaltending. Assuming Roberto Luongo returns next season, they’ll have to move James Reimer to make room for a new starting goaltender. GM Dale Tallon also indicated he wants to add a top-four right-shot defenseman. They’re also believed interested in pursuing Columbus left wing Artemi Panarin via free agency. 

Columbus’ Sergei Bobrovsky and the Islanders Robin Lehner are among those Richards listed as goalie options. He also suggested Columbus’ Adam McQuaid or Tampa Bay’s Anton Stralman as blueline options. 

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Tallon will be busy this summer. He’s been long rumored interested in Bobrovsky and Panarin. However, I think he should put his focus on his goaltending and defense first.

The Panthers sat ninth last season in goals for per game but possessed the fourth-highest goals-against per game. Panarin could be a luxury they don’t need unless he trades one of his scoring wingers (Jonathan Huberdeau?) for a top-two right-side blueliner. 


  1. Easy for Stralman to move east to the Panthers for both sides. Panarin and Bob is alot of cap space for them to take on. Their top 6 is not a concern

  2. Huberdeau has 92 points last year. He’s nearly 2 years younger than Panarin and has 4 years left on contract with a ridiculous cap hit of 5.9 mil. There’s no way I trade him just to make room for Panarin. There’s got to be other ways to improve Goals against…. signing Bobrovsky is a start. With Tippett and Denisenko in system, Panarin doesn’t make much sense for a team that’s already loaded with offense.

    • Not sure if I see any team taking Reimer off FLA’s hands. That being said, how do they sign Bobrovsky?

      Maybe call EDM and offer Reimer for Russell? This may give them a depth defensive defenseman and the cap hit is only about 600k apart. EDM gets back a goalie to challenge Koskinen. Maybe even bring in a veteran like Girardi who is another defensive minded defenseman to aide in that. Going to be hard to get affordable young & fast Defensive Dmen in this market.

      I agree keep Huberdeau and I would look at Hayes & Zuccarello…whom played very well together IN NY. Combined cap hit is about what Panarin would ask for and gives FLA really good 2-way depth.

      • Ihatecrosby. Bite your tongue! I need Zuc to resign with Stars… then 3rd round pick next year becomes a 1st for Rangers!

      • Good call there Slick lol……ya think I need that too =)

        Completely forgot about that…. lol

      • If I were running things in Mtl, I would definitely consider taking Reimer and his Cap hit if the payoff were getting Borgstrom and his Cap hit also.

        Mtl needs a backup.
        Borgstrom good player.

        Fla is deep at C
        Gets 4.5 $mill in Cap space

        Reimer, in turn, is either traded at the Trade Deadline next year or dumped post season, as his presence would be a hindrance the year after with the Expansion Draft looming.

        Remember:Have to expose one signed Goalie with x Amount of games played, and Reimer’s contract, just at Expansion Draft time, would have expired

        His contract expiration timing is more problem for Fla trying to deal him.

    • I agree, Slick. I mentioned Huberdeau only because he’s surfaced in recent trade speculation. I believe the Panthers would be crazy to trade him. That’s why I consider Panarin a luxury the Panthers don’t need. They had no trouble scoring goals, it was preventing them that hurt them.

      • Depending on what happens with Trouba, Panthers would be better off either trading for him ( picks/prospect) or signing Myers. Sure would cost less. I think most of the speculation is more from Panarins side. There is a lot of Russians in SoFla and I can see him wanting to go. Feeling might not be mutual with Tallon

    • Im not paying Bob 10-11 per year when I can have Lehner for 6-7 and he is younger. As for D, they should really look at Trouba if he is traded and Strålman as a 3-4 D.

  3. Totally looks like Pavelski will do what Thornton did and sign back with SJ till he is 100 yrs old too. They really love playing there.

    I would love NYR to make a pitch for him on a mutually friendly deal. It would solidify the 2c spot for a few years. His leadership and skill set would be massive to the young guys in Manhattan.

    In the end I can see him signing a 4 yr deal with SJ.

    • Best Coast

      • Best coast…….worst state in the Union though……

      • Left coast

      • dpf, guess you haven’t been to BC, huh?

  4. With Ghosts contract being reasonable with term, I suspect he may be moved by Philadelphia. Either in a package for a top 6 forward or a RHD.
    I’ve been saying this all year. Trouba would be a good fit. With the Jets up against the cap and with Myers leaving, a ghost on a good contract could be of interest.

    • I thought about that too. Both Trouba and Meyers both play the right side though and Ghost plays the left if i am not mistaken. They would need to replace their right side.

      Perhaps WPG gets ahead of it and offers
      to PHI: Trouba & Perreault
      to WPG: Sanheim, Hartman and a 1st this year.

      Sanheim plays the right and is cost controlled. Hartman would be the depth replacement for Perreault

      Trouba is that type of defenseman PHI may be looking for to upgrade their D now. They take back a depth center who can top 9 and plays both center and wing.

      WPG gets cap relief in this trade as well. PHI gives up minimal to gain Trouba bc of taking on Perreaults cap.

      • Ihatecrosby
        I wonder if Trouba agreed to a deal in Win., could Jets look to sign Myers and trade Big Buff? He has a limited ntc. Would anyone be willing to take on that contract?

      • Sanheim is also a left shot.
        From Philadelphia perspective I think they would rather keep Sanheim and pair him with Phil Myers to keep the LHD/RHD I balance.
        That with a Trouba/Provorov 1st pairing would be a strength.

        Winnipeg’s PP can go fry, and no doubt Ghost would help that.

        I thought of Florida as well for ghost. If both teams wanted to make it a huge deal. A package for Huberdeu would be interesting.

    • not sure if ghost is a good fit for the panthers, but he did grow up in broward county, attended msd and always alot of friends and family when they play the flyers. panthers have enough offense, but the defense is shaky and question marks in goal. riemer is on his way out, luongo is on fumes, and montembault has potential but largely untested.

  5. To be honest I am not sure any team NEEDS Big Buff. If you look at the teams in the playoffs currently….their D is set. Of all the teams that made the playoffs, PITTS is the only team that can use his playing style BUT they are in cap trouble on his backend and WPG is not taking JJ or Gudbranson back.

    Maybe Philly in exchange for MacDonald….
    Maybe to Vancouver for Hutton
    Not sure though

    Most other teams are riding their youth and keep their cap space.

    If they sign Trouba…..they lose Meyers IMO

    I think Meyers has been the more steady of the 2 players BUT if he is seeking $7m on a long term deal….perhaps trade his negotiations rights….

    I think my idea of Trouba to PHILLY for Sanheim sort of works for both teams needs.

    • Hi IHC

      Agree on the cap problems that Pens have… I’m not a Gudbranson hater… high pay for 3rd pairing for sure; but I’m not cringing as much as I am with the brutal JJ

      There has never been a more ideal time for a buyout in the History if NHL buyouts.

      JJ all on his lonesome cost Pens 11 game points, 4 shutouts, and 2nd place in the entire League …. if he’s bought out…. cap hit next year only $270K (per Capfriendly).,.. that saves the team $3M in Cap and makes the team TREMENDOUSLY better w/o him on the team…. if GMJR does not either buy him out OR trade him …. he just doesn’t deserve to be GM

      Yesterday regarding the posts of Nsh trading PK I proposed:

      JJ & Phil (10.3 M) for
      PK & Gaudreau (9.7M) & Sissons (RFA)

      Something has got to give

      That move frees up an opportunity to move say Maata for a forward in another deal


      • @Pengy…

        I cannot see POILE trading PK for PK because of cap value itself. To move PK from NSH would be an indication they want the cap space to make other moves including giving the next young & upcoming guys on the backend more ice time. More cap space could bolster their scoring depth too in a preemptive move in case Turris does not pan out as expected.

        Your proposal only benefits PITTS and NSH gains nothing.

        IF Kessel was statistically not declining then I think NSH considers it.

        Pitts best course of action is to trade “garbage for garbage” so to speak.

        Call cap strapped teams and take back a comparable toxic contract for JJ’s in hopes both sides sort of work thru the troubles.

        Something like
        to Van: Kessel & JJ
        to Pitts: Eriksson & Sutter

        sometimes ya just have to do things you normally would call insane just to get rid of one issue

  6. Why does every pundit think the Senators would be a good destination for another team’s crap – always under the guise of “reaching the cap floor?” After scoring 30 goals for Boston in 2015-16 in 82 gp, Eriksson has managed just 32 over 196 games since joining Vancouver. In addition to a couple from among the upcoming UFAs who could be targeted (yes, they’ll have to pay a bit more than the going rate to attract one or two of the better ones to Ottawa) there are also a number of teams facing a cap crunch who simply won’t be able to retain all their RFAs and who may be ready to deal for players from among the Sens deep pool of prospects and/or plethora of picks they have over the next 2 seasons. I think Dorion will explore those routes before taking on the likes of an Eriksson or Callahan.

    What makes me think Dorion is heading that way is the signing yesterday of free-agent puck-moving 23 y/o Swedish D Olie Alsing who will report to development camp in June and start the season in Belleville. With the depth they already have on D – including ace prospects Branstrom and Bernard-Docker, the fact he’s added yet another such prospect leads me to believe a draft-day deal may be in the works involving, say, a Wolanin.

    • George I know I have mentioned this with Lucic…but does moving LTIR MacArthur and LTIR Gaborik in exchange for Eriksson work? Body to actually play vs spending money just to have a guy sit….. Does it take sense for OTT?

      perhaps a

      to OTT: Eriksson & Tanev
      to Van: MacArthur or Gaborik & Ceci


      • First of all, each of Lucic, Eriksson and Callahan have NM/NT clauses which, even if limited, very likely does NOT include a move to Ottawa, and more than likely not waived since the Sens are in full re-build mode.

        Add top that that MacArthur’s $4,650,000 comes off thje books after next season, while Gaborik’s $4,875,000 runs to 2020-21

        Lucic’s $6 mil does not come off until after 2022-23, Eriksson’s $6 mil doesn’t come off until after 2021-22 – and both are fading faster than a man after hearing the results of a pregnancy test. Callahan’s $5.8 mil might make sense since it comes off the books after next season – but as I say, that point is moot since the LAST play he’d willingly go to is Ottawa.

        As I say elsewhere, I think Dorion is either working on deals to bring in some veteran – but still useful help – through trades involving picks/prospects, and maybe even scouring the UFA list to sign someone whose career has SOME life left in it. Neither Lucic nor Eriksson will “bounce back” from careers that have been in obvious decline for 2 and 3 years.

        The same applies to Callahan whose has been in steady decline since 2014-15.

    • George, I feel your pain. I’ve seen same suggestions that Rangers take Callahan and recently a trade where we take Marleau in order to get Kapanin! The idea that certain teams have no plan of competing baffles me. If we learned anything this season is nobody knows who is a contender and who isn’t. 4 division winners went out in 1st round. Blues went from dead last in January to conf. Finals. Hurricanes also. Avs. You’ve mentioned last few days possibility of Duchene going to Sens. Who knows? Maybe if he’s happy there, he gets them that much closer to playoffs. Definitely makes more sense than taking on bad contracts.

      • Marleau with his one year left is fine for a team with cap space if they get a trade in their favor. Leafs need to do some serious maneuvers to make their roster fit

  7. Trouba is unlikely to sign in the peg long term, Myers might.
    In that scenario a perfect summer or draft trade for the jets would be trouba for trocheck

  8. Gostisbehere to the Habs would be a popular trade. Could be a win win with the right other pieces.

    Nyquist will be getting a call from Holland . We will see how strong of a relationship they had in Detroit . Edmonton in January or SAN Jose in January ?

  9. The Oilers should try and flip jesse pulj + benning and a 2nd for kadri and kapenen then flip lucic to van for ericksson



    • They should … but unfortunately in the real world they need a willing dance partner and I don’t see either Vancouver or Toronto going down that road.