NHL Rumor Mill – June 15, 2019

by | Jun 15, 2019 | Rumors | 84 comments

The latest on Jacob Trouba, Jared Spurgeon, James Reimer, and Garret Sparks plus an update on the Canucks in today’s NHL rumor mill. 


WINNIPEG SUN: Ken Wiebe expects the status of Jets defenseman Jacob Trouba to be sorted out by next weekend’s NHL Draft in Vancouver. If Trouba’s traded, a potential return for the Jets will be affected by whether he’s open to signing a contract extension with the club that acquires him. Left winger Nikolaj Ehlers has come up in trade rumors but Wiebe believes it’ll take a significant offer to pry him away from the Jets. Depending on Trouba’s status, center Mathieu Perreault could become a cost-cutting trade candidate. 

THE ATHLETIC: Craig Custance pointed out rumors have linked Trouba, a Detroit-area native, to the Red Wings. They have plenty of salary-cap flexibility but general manager Steve Yzerman could be reluctant to part with assets for a player a year away from UFA status.

Decision day fast approaching for Winnipeg Jets defenseman Jacob Trouba (Photo via NHL Images).

Custance suggested the Tampa Bay Lightning and Florida Panthers as possibilities because Trouba’s fiancee is attending medical school in Florida. He also considered the Philadelphia Flyers as a potential destination. 

SPECTOR’S NOTE: There’s growing speculation Trouba will be traded before the end of next weekend’s draft. I also wouldn’t rule out the Buffalo Sabres, New York Islanders, and New York Rangers as possible landing spots. I agree that where he could end up depends on whether he’ll sign a contract extension.

I have my doubts the Jets will part with Ehlers, though they might go for it if someone offered up a suitable replacement for Trouba. 


SPORTSNET: Mike Johnston cites player agent J.P. Barry saying he expects to speak with the Vancouver Canucks regarding clients Jake Gardiner and Tyler Myers when free agency opens on July 1. Canucks GM Jim Benning’s made no secret he’s in the market for a top-four defenseman. 

SPECTOR’S NOTE: It wouldn’t be at all surprising if Benning pursues Gardiner and Myers. The UFA interview period begins the day following the draft (June 23). The Canucks GM will likely be keen to speak with those two. 


TWINCITIES.COM: Dane Mizutani reports Minnesota Wild GM Paul Fenton said he has every intention of re-signing Jared Spurgeon. The 29-year-old defenseman is a year away from becoming an unrestricted free agent.

Fenton dismissed recent speculation suggesting Spurgeon could be traded this summer. “There’s not a plan to trade Jared Spurgeon, as has been kind of rumored. This guy is a great piece, a great leader, a great person, a great family guy. We want to have him back, and we’re going to work on doing that.”

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Mizutani indicates this doesn’t mean a contract extension is imminent. Nevertheless, there appears a mutual willingness to work out a new deal. Spurgeon’s on a four-year, $20.75-million contract and will seek a significant raise. 




  1. Lyle, if a team is interested in trading for Trouba, how can they determine if he’s willing to sign a contract extension? Are they allowed to talk to Trouba’s agent before making the deal? How does that work? Thanks.

    • If a club is interested in Trouba but wants him to sign a contract extension, the Jets can give them permission to do so.

    • It’s been reported by some that Trouba agent has permission to talk to interested teams

    • I think starting June 26th teams do not need permission.to interview RFA’s.

  2. Wow: LeBrun’s Twitter Acct. Is Just Exploding With Wise Guy Cracks About Sparks Going Anywhere

    • Pro or con Joey? Bet many are saying they should have kept McElhiney.

      • @George: I would have kept Mac: He was well liked and reliable and Babcock had faith in him.
        Sparks didn’t transition well for AHL to NHL and now, he likely needs a fresh start to redo his game to get it back to where it was in the AHL.

      • @ George: But I can’t remember exactly what the issue was but I believe Dubas could only keep one or the other and felt he had no choice but to let Mac go. its a business

      • Agree with what you say – but what I meant by pro or con was those comments on LeBrun’s Twitter acc’t – are they mostly negative towards Sparks and Dubas’ decision to keep him away from waivers and let McElhiney go? Sorry for the confusion.

      • @ George: 8/10 posters are just trashing him. Give him away. Leafs retain 100% salary, bag of pucks, roll of tape: Beer league talent at best and on it goes.
        Problem is that these are real people and when you and I have a bad day, usually only a few people know about it but these guys, the national audience sees it and that can’t be an easy thing to deal with.
        Anyways, with any luck, he’ll get his game back together somewhere and if he gets traded, maybe he will come back and stick it to them !

    • Geez there are some good comments on there! I said at the start of the season that sparks wasn’t ready for the nhl but leaf fans said he was

  3. I’ve said it before but the club never appears to be linked to Trouba. The Habs should be making a push for him. Cap space is not a problem and he could really help the teams quick transition game. He could be the teams PP quaterback too-something I believe he seeks with his new team. Mtl could keep Webber as a trigger man on the same unit possibly freeing up another quality F for the 2nd PP unit. Thoughts anyone?

    • When Trouba’s agent sought a trade three years ago the preferred destinations were American-based clubs. I don’t think that’s changed.

      • Yeah, I seriously doubt Montreal – or any other Canadian city for that matter – is on his list of preferred destinations

    • If Ottawa gets Leddy to settle down their young defense, I wonder who they have in mind to settle down Dorion and Melnyk.

      • Maybe dubas? He’s good at overpaying players!

  4. Trouba & Ehlers to NYR


    #20 winny’s,Lias A. Buchny

    ,Lindgren or Pionk ,

    Vesey or Namestikov

    5 for 2 swap

  5. I still think Trouba favors Detroit. Pretty sure his girl goes to school in South Florida which would mean Panthers… if he’s signing long term would that even matter? I’m hoping for Rangers and from what I’ve read he’s high on their to do list.

    • Would be interesting if TB can get him and flip Miller to WPG to fill at center or winger position in the top 9 along with another player like Johnson (if he will waive) who is also equally as capable at all forward positions.

      to TB: Trouba & Lowry
      to WPG: Miller & Johnson & 1st this yr

  6. Why would the Isles want Trouba? Yes he is a good player buy they have a lot of defenseman and need wingers they will trade dee foe wingers not the other way? makes no sense.I think Drouin maybe coming for Leddy. Lyle you hear anything like that?

    • Dreger said the isles want picks/prospects for leddy for cap space I’m assuming to sign lee?

      • Snow’s fault for signing Ladd to that ugly contract.

    • I’ve heard Leddy could be available. Not for Drouin straight up.

      • Leddy’s the kind of D I’d like to see Ottawa get to help settle down their (*mostly) young D corps. If Lamoriello wants to deal him solely for cap relief in order to sign Lee and wants picks/prospects in return, Dorion has that in spades.

  7. To MIN: Ehlers & Trouba

    to WPG: Zucker, Spurgeon, their 1st rd next yr

    WPG gets another year from Spurgeon on the right side to work out a fit and contract. they can have Zucker who is still strong contributor and maybe flipped for a 2nd line center. Both those players fit in their WIN NOW mode at the moment. They get a 1st rd pick too for future depth.

    MIN gets a young Ehlers which helps them rebuild with younger players. Trouba fits on the backend for a few extra years than Spurgeon.

    • Why would the Jets trade a 25 year old Trouba (with 1 year left on his contract) and a 23 year old Ehlers (6 years left at 6 mil) for a 29 year old Spurgeon (also 1 year left in his contract) and a 27 year old Zucker (4 years left at 5.5 mil). It makes no sense. Ehlers contract will be more and more cap friendly as the years go by. They will be in the same boat with Spurgeon as they are with Trouba. Chevy is a smart GM and if he trades Trouba I believe he will receive a valuable asset that will be here more than 1 year.

      • I am not saying Minny would not have to add something BUT…..Surgeon and Zucker are less costly that Ehlers @6 and Trouba who wants prob 8 and OUT of WPG.

        WPG gets assets and cap space to sign Laine, Conner, etc….. then they can work something out with Spurgeon this summer, if not use him as an additional asset.

        They can also flip Zucker for assets for adding enough cap space to sign Laine & Conner, etc…

        not saying it will happen but a though for Chevy to consider

    • IHC. Did you see in Lyles post the part that says Spungeon ain’t going anywhere? Lol

      • Lyle NEVER wrote that. He wrote, and I paraphrase, “There are no plans….” =)

        No plans means at this exact second…. things change

        If they can move him and improve…they will.

    • IHC.
      Saw a rumor today that Rangers and Buffalo are talkinking trade for Vesey. What can we get?

      • Most likely a draft pick either 3rd or 4th plus a late rounder.

        Rangers need Vesey to be top 6 but since he has not been consistent enough they need to move him before he commands 3.5 a yr or more.

        They did the same thing with Miller.

        I would prefer a 2nd for him but doubt they get that

        Would prefer Vesey plus 20th for Risto…..but that aint happening

      • Vesey should have just signed with Buffalo in first place when they traded for his rights, he could have been playing on a line with his good friend Eichel instead of bench warmer in NY

      • Matt…Vesey is nota bench warmer. He plays up and down the line-up nightly. He just appears not to project in the top6 long-term for this squad. Better to trade him off now while ya can. perhaps even

        to Buff: Pionk & Vesey
        to NYR: Risto

  8. I find it strange in the salary cap era that the league hasn’t looked at the bias the cap actually brings. The cap system hugely favours teams that have zero to little tax. Wasn’t the cap system designed to level the playing field? Yet teams like Tampa and Florida can effectively secure players on smaller contracts as the take home salary for that player is more than if other markets offered the same. People said Yzerman was a genius for how he constructed the current Tampa roster, but the cap system allowed him to sign players to team-friendly contracts giving them more wriggle room. Then big market teams have to subsidize them when they run at a loss. Shouldn’t the league employ a sliding cap which takes into account tax? The current system is flawed!

    • Don’t forget the Canadian dollar, Jimmy Mac, if you’re trying for equity in the cap.

    • There are pluses and minuses for almost every team. The tax can be one. Location another. Facilities, culture, competiveness… nothing stopping those states providence’s etc from changing their tax laws.

      Sour grapes

      • A healthy portion of our federal tax goes towards our universal health care – when someone here is rushed to a hospital all they ask to see is the health card – not the bank account.

      • I’m a Brit Chrisms so not sour grapes at all. Canadian teams in general will have a harder job winning the cup as the current system clearly favours some American teams. No state or province should have to change their tax system so one sports league can become even. The league needs to step up.

      • Jimmy. As Richard aptly put it below.., there are inequities all over including tax issue. Gms need to use them to their advantage if they got em and figure out how to beat them when they don’t.

        When was the last cup winner from one of these tax havens?

      • In the USA no one is turned away from any hospital, we give free brain surgery to illegal aliens and lazy welfare rats. I’ve met many Canadians who travel here for hospital treatments.

      • Who is we Matt? You work at a hospital? You treat these human beings when they are hurt or sick? I do. And proud of it dickhead.

    • But the government tells us the services we get for our taxes justifies their level. Surely this applies to Hockey players as well as ordinary citizens. Are we also going to factor in cost-of-living? How about gas prices?. The frustration is understood & likely the issue is real, but no more real than the climate, or quality of urban life. Every NHL market has some happy players, and some who aren’t.
      Trying to equalize is worse than a slippery slope…its a black hole.

      • Well said

      • So I can make 8 million tax free there but over here they have to offer me more because there is x % tax on my salary and you think the price of tea matters to players? It’s only a blackhole if you are going to be ridiculous.

      • It’s a pretty easy fix. a team that has say a 20% tax offers a 10 million a year contract the cap hit is 8 million! No owners lose any money their the ones giving permission for those contracts, and than it’s fair for everyone Tampa has a huge advantage as it stands right now

      • Good solution BBB.

    • That’s a political problem. Not a sports problem.

      • true but no state taxes in FL, TN etc is a huge advantage….heck even CO at flat rate of 4.63% doesn’t matter how much you make isn’t bad…..

      • There are other huge advantages though… how about the huge advantage of the allure of major metro cities? Or the shine of an original 6? Take my rangers… players repeatedly talk about the thrill and pride of skating onto msg ice… if you balance out the tax advantages do you tear down msg for providing an unequal lure for talent?

      • I disagree. The US will never have a health care system to pay for. And it’s the leagues obligation to create equality. If it’s not, why have a cap system in the first place. Other factors can be personal-location, etc. But the cap system fails in addressing equal finances. The exchange rate I don’t think can be factored in as it is changeable.

      • The league has no obligation to create equality… it has an obligation to create money for its owners. How much parity plays into that is up for debate. The cap prevents major market teams from buying championships… requiring gms of those teams to actually play within a set of rules similar to everyone else.

    • However, the no tax in certain states isnt as relevant as you think when it comes to “cap advantages”. When a player is paid for a game it is based on the location that the game is played not the state he is employed in. So being that the league tries to keep a fairly even split on home and away games then the actual tax savings doesn’t help. However, the other coin to that is it does allow for a team to an incentive heavy bonus structure. Bonuses are paid in the actual state of the team and can get the tax free advantage. With that though they are factored into the players AAV and still do not minimize the potential cap hit. So the advantage isnt actually to the cap it is to the player to be able to get more money through bonuses thereby making the team more attractive.

      • As Richard said, it’s only one variable. And a diluted variable as you explained. Some may prefer the closeness of home that TOR or EDM provide, FLA and TX have no advantage there… I think Ghost is the only NHLer that hails from FLA

      • Who got the best fa available in many years at a market discount because he wanted to go play for his boyhood team?? Don’t think it was one of the Florida teams.

      • Chrisms you don’t know the offers

  9. Can anyone offer up a reasonable thought on why someone would trade for Garrett Sparks?

    • To play for an AHL team and for depth. I don’t think he’ll be an NHL starter in the future, but he is at least a good minor league goalie. If he can be had for a late round pick and your farm team is in need for goaltending why not?

      • Lyle, wasn’t the main reason Dubas chose to keep Sparks was because he would have had to clear waivers and, at the time, he felt Sparks had more upside than McElhiney and Pickard, both of whom were then lost to waivers. If so, wouldn’t any team acquiring him then have to clear him through waivers at some point?

      • You’re correct that Dubas and company felt Sparks had more upside. He was also AHL goalie of the year in 2017-18 and helped the Marlies win the Calder Cup last year. All three were waiver eligible.

    • Flyers are buying out McDonald

    • Devan Dubnyk.

      Sometimes a promising goalie can look like trash and lose his game in the wrong circumstances. Not saying Sparks is the next Dubnyk, but IF your scouts and staff see something worthwhile in his fundamentals then you give it a shot.

      He has performed at a high level in the AHL but things went pear-shaped for him in the transition last year. Give him a place out of the spotlight and maybe he can get it back on track.

      • Fair point.

      • There were certainly more than a few teams ready to pounce on Sparks had he been exposed to waivers back then.

  10. MacDonald buyout is a good move. Didn’t wait long . Adding Niskanen even better. Ghost; Provorov and Sanheim will make a nice Foundation with a couple of spots open. Myers Hagg and the like maybe adding another veteran

    • Id really like to see Sam Morin get a shot this season. Huge in size and would more than replace the nwstiness and sandpaper Gudas provided.

      • You can be sure Vigneault will give Samuel Morin all the opportunity
        to play in the NHL next season

      • @Jude

        AV has a terrible time with younger players who may make mistakes.

        He used to deploy David Desharnais on the PP and PK and key moments to win games when he could have been playing his youth and developing them. He literally trusted DD way more than youth…and DD made same amount of mistakes.

        Hope he changes and develops them this time around.

  11. Trouba the most overrated player in league. My Sabres would never trade for him and pay him 8 million dollars. They have to pay Dahlin and Montour soon. Trouba is a playoff bust. Guy was on loaded offensive teams and couldn’t score at all in any playoff year, his 50 points is just luck.

    • Then he’d be perfect in Buffalo. They’re never in playoffs.

      • Thats exactly what I was thinking…lol.

      • Lmao! A great fit in Buffalo! Eichel 10 per, not a single playoff point!

    • Matt I think you need to go get some free brain surgery lol

      • BBB, not a problem for you.

      • Very original bcl……….did you read his comment above? Otherwise you have no idea what you’re talking about

    • I. H. C.

      I’m sorry, that comment on AV and Desharnais is factually not correct.

      You are confusing AV with the oaf, Therrien.

      A glance st their career years in Montreal will confirm this.


      • Apologies…..I should have been more clear. AV as the head coach of the NY Rangers deployed Desharnais.

        Sadly NY had him (Desharnais) for a horrific season.

  12. @Lyle: I really do appreciate this website: Good topics; discussed well; with honest,intelligent feedback for the most part 7 days a week by followers here who actually try to develop the chatter rather than run into the ground; as I’ve encountered on websites that just hate and annoy for the sake of its own existence.

    Sometimes I just like the read what others have posted cuz the thread moves and develops quickly so why add your 2 cents worth if its already being said well by others.

    Go stuff here Lyle: Same 2 All The Posters Here

  13. Good Stuff Here Lyle: 🙁 Not Go Stuff: Some Days Are Longer Than Others

      • @ Lyle: Cheers ! Keep Up The Good Work

  14. Pens just gave maata away for cap space basically, a c prospect and a 5th

  15. Never mind the tweet was wrong it’s kahun and a 5th