NHL Rumor Mill (Part Two) – June 21, 2019

by | Jun 21, 2019 | Rumors | 56 comments

Updates on Matt Duchene, Chris Kreider, and Jesse Puljujarvi plus the latest on the Canadiens, Capitals, Senators and more in Part 2 of today’s NHL rumor mill. 


Note: All the Leafs speculation in that segment has been covered in Part One of today’s NHL rumor mill. 

TSN: Pierre LeBrun reports it’s believed Montreal Canadiens general manager Marc Bergevin inquired about Philadelphia Flyers defenseman Shayne Gostisbehere. The Flyers are happy to retain Gostisbehere but are willing to listen to offers. 

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Bergevin needs a top-four left-side blueliner, preferably one who can line up with Shea Weber on the Habs’ first pairing. No surprise he looked into Gostisbehere’s availability.

I’m expecting Bergevin to swing a deal this weekend to address that need. Maybe he’ll make a call to the Calgary Flames. T.J. Brodie is said to be available and can play either side. The Habs have also been linked to Nick Leddy of the New York Islanders. 

Darren Dreger reports Vancouver Canucks GM Jim Benning seeks an experienced blueliner via the trade market. He noted Colorado’s Tyson Barrie has surfaced in the rumor mill. If Benning decides to go the free-agent route, Winnipeg’s Tyler Myers could be an option.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Benning has the 10th overall pick in this year’s draft. Maybe he’ll dangle that as trade bait for a quality rearguard today.

LeBrun said the Columbus Blue Jackets haven’t yet made an offer for pending UFA center Matt Duchene but remain interested in keeping him. Duchene’s agent, Pat Brisson, will start fielding calls from interested clubs on Sunday and Monday and from there they’ll decide what their plans are. 

Chris Kreider’s days with the New York Rangers could be numbered (Photo via NHL Images).


NEW YORK POST: Larry Brooks feels Chris Kreider’s days with the Rangers could be coming to an end. The 28-year-old winger is a year away from UFA eligibility and there have been no contract extension talks between the two sides. Brooks speculates the Kreider camp could seek a six- or seven-year deal worth $6.75 million per season.

Given Kreider’s inconsistent play this season and the Rangers’ rebuilding efforts, he could hit the trade block this weekend. Brooks suggests shopping him for a first-round pick in this year’s draft, listing Detroit, Buffalo, Florida, Arizona or Colorado as possible trade partners. However, he expects those clubs would have to know they can re-sign Kreider to an extension.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: The Rangers are expected to be among the bidders for scorers like Artemi Panarin or Matt Duchene if they hit the UFA market on July 1. It’s believed they’ll want to free up sufficient cap space to pursue those players. If Kreider no longer fits into the Blueshirts’ future, moving his $4.625-million cap hit for next season makes sense. I doubt they’ll get a first-round pick for him but it doesn’t hurt to ask.


EDMONTON JOURNAL: Robert Tychkowski reports Oilers GM Ken Holland is prepared to let Jesse Puljujarvi play in Europe next season. The agent for the 21-year-old winger said his client would play in Finland next season unless traded to a new NHL club. Puljujarvi is a restricted free agent on July 1. Tychkowski observes the young forward’s trade value is very low right now. He feels it’s unlikely Puljujarvi is traded unless it’s as part of a larger package. 

Oilers winger Milan Lucic has been the subject of frequent trade speculation this spring. However, Holland said he hasn’t asked the Lucic camp to waive his no-movement clause. He won’t do that unless there’s a deal in the works. So far, all’s quiet on that front. 

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Unless Holland gets an impressive trade offer I don’t see him moving Puljujarvi. And since the Oilers retain his rights if the winger heads to Finland next season, he can afford to be patient with the youngster. Maybe Puljujarvi’s agent is trying to test Holland. If so, Holland is calling his bluff. 


THE WASHINGTON POST: Isabelle Khurshudyan reports on winger Andre Burakovsky’s uncertain future with the Capitals. He’s a restricted free agent and qualifying his rights ($3.25 million) could prove too expensive for the cap-strapped club. GM Brian MacLellan admitted Burakovsky’s inconsistency this season was frustrating but still considers him a good player. He said he won’t move the winger unless he gets a return he’s comfortable with. Khurshudyan speculates that could be “a draft pick or a comparable forward around Burakovsky’s age (24) and ability.”

SPORTING NEWS: Sammi Silber reports MacLellan acknowledged he’s “still talking to some teams” regarding Burakovsky. Silber said one possible suggestion could be shipping the winger to Edmonton for Jesse Puljujarvi. 

SPECTOR’S NOTE: MacLellan could decide not to qualify Burakovsky’s rights in hopes of re-signing him as a UFA to a more affordable deal. It would be a risky move as Burakovsky could decide to pursue a more lucrative offer elsewhere. If that tactic isn’t workable, MacLellan could trade the winger rather than qualify him. 


OTTAWA SUN: Bruce Garrioch reports Ottawa Senators GM Pierre Dorion is willing to consider taking on the contract of a veteran player from a cap-strapped club. However, he’ll want a “sweetener” involved, such as a first-round draft pick or a top prospect included in the deal.

The Senators have plenty of salary cap space to make this work.  It’s believed five or six clubs have discussed moving contracts to the Senators. Those discussions could continue throughout next week. 

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Should the salary cap come in at between $81.5 to $82 million as rumored, the Senators will still have lots of cap space to take on a veteran contract. Cap Friendly indicates they have over $48.4 million invested in 16 players, with Cody Ceci and Colin White their noteworthy RFAs. Dorion should be able to work this to his advantage. 



  1. If Kevin Hayes can get $7.1 I don’t see why Kreider would take less.

    • I agree with you…..going to be a real interesting couple weeks …..so many teams are up against the cap it’s ridiculous…like somebody mentioned a day or so here could be the start of the changing of the guard in the nhl

    • One reason might be that other GMs won’t be as willing to overpay as Philly did.

  2. Kreider for #1 .why cant you pkg him for a top center needed to run with Z bad …
    kreider + Lias A. + shatty or smith at 1/2 pay = R N H
    Edm needs to get a speed wing for Mc D & d help for PP in shatty , Lias is the sweetner
    R N H will go off if on NYR
    still plenty of $$ for Panarin

    top 6 Zbad ,R N H,Panarin ,Buchny,KK,Kravtov ….or chtyl

    bottom 6 Howden Strome Lemeuix Fast chtyl Vesey Boo is 13th
    thats a contenders top 12 +1

    • I think many of us have envisioned Kreider flying with #97. Add Leon and that powerplay trio is deadly but will Kreider sign 7 years to play in Edmonton…. I doubt it.
      If Colorado feels they can win NOW why not add Kreider and another forward from the Rangers?

      • colorado has been rumored with krieds

        krieder + 1/2 shatty $$ …..=Tyson Barrie

    • Spector’s note on Kreider, “I doubt they’ll get a 1st round pick for him but it doesn’t hurt.”

      Can you explain why they wouldn’t? Between his unique skill set and team friendly contract for ‘19 ($4.6MM in ‘19), he would likely net them a 1st round next February as a rental.

      • Because he could bolt via free agency next summer. If an interested club could get assurances he’ll re-sign for a reasonable contract, sure, a first rounder isn’t out of the question. But I don’t think that’s in the cards.

      • Same dilemma every year for teams. We’ve seen the same thing happen between Winnipeg and the Rangers twice, with the same pick, in the same year, under the same circumstances outlined above.

        I don’t believe Kreider nets them a top 10 without reassurance of a LTD or a sweetener, but I can absolutely see Colorado serving the #16 pick to acquire him.

        This is a hobby for me and always appreciate the information and research you guys provide!! Thanks for always giving the readers opportunities to ponder and play GM for an hour!

      • I think I saw this same thing about Hayes and Nash…. from some here.

      • Lyle, I wouldn’t say Kreider was inconsistent last year. He was hurt, missed some games and played probably not at 100%. His 28 goals Where equal to that of Panarin. Doesn’t help that they had another sell off at deadline.It doesn’t really make sense to trade him now. Also, Gorton was interviewed last night and said he’s been in contact with both Trouba and Kreiders agents

      • Slick, his last 42 games he scored 8 goals.

      • What exactly is Kreider’s skill set that everyone raves about? All the tools, but for some reason, still not that good??

      • Hey Oil,

        From my perspective he’s taken extremely long to develop but can be the “modern day” power forward. He’s got the skill to put up 30-40 goals consistently every season, although, has only managed a high of 28, twice in his career. He is punishing on defenders and I believe I read somewhere he averages 115 hits per season. He has very good speed and is not shy about heading to the net. He’s A north and south guy, not so much a lateral or finesse guy. A very good complimentary player to someone with very good playmaking abilities.

      • NY4. As o said. He had an injury issue that slowed him down. I’m not going to bash a guy for last 42 games when team is tanking and trading 2 top 6 guys. His 28 goals are still same amount as Panarin. I’m not saying he’s worth what Panarin would get, but he’s one of the best in league when it comes to net from presence

    • Nuge is going nowhere unless the return is a lot bigger than that.

      • Hey Charlie good post. I agree with everything you said. I just don’t think at 28 years old there is much more there. He’s a good player, has the tools but can’t put it all together. And for someone who’s going to want 7Mil. I wouldn’t be interested. To me he’s a second line guy. Maybe a first line winger in fantasy.

    • Edmonton can’t afford to take on a winger that wants 7Mil. Also, everyone thinks they need a fast winger to play with Connor. As Leon and Nuge have already shown, the best players with Connor so far are smart. Give and goes, they don’t need to be fast. Kreider is an up and down winger, not what Connor needs. Oh and the Oilers already have a winger for Connor, it’s Leon. Why would you split up a 50 goal scorer???

    • There is something wrong with these GMs, one of these younger GMs needs to wake them up with an offer sheet…all these monster contracts for guys who can’t even get 60 points and these 7-8 year deals with no trade clause for forwards who are 30s. I feel like I’m in the twilight zone…in other news a guy like Lucic should be sent to AHL and he can become the teams bus driver, make him clean floors until he quits. Pure nonsense, these guys hang around until last penny comes to them

  3. That’s what I’ve been trying to say for a few weeks now re Dorion’s approach to the coming season. That is to say, they don’t need to take on a lame-duck contract like Lucic’s or Callahan’s to reach the cap floor since there will be several teams drafting from 9 to 18 ahead of them who find themselves squeezed by the cap and who may be ready to unload a veteran with a couple of years left on a healthy contract in order to free up space. Apparently there have been a few such calls leading up to tonight, so it wouldn’t surprise me at all to hear Bettman say “I have a trade to announce” somewhere between 9 and 18. I deliberately ignore draft position 8 because that belongs to Edmonton and the main roster player giving Holland cap nightmares is that of Lucic’s – and I just don’t see anyone that desperate – even for position # 8. But I’m prepared to be surprised because, as Chrisms keeps saying, there is always a knucklehead in the mix.

    • (If I were Rutherford) I’d offer Ottawa the Pens #21 and Patric Hornqvist in exchange for one of Ottawa’s second round picks to move his deal, for example.

      • I am sure glad that you aren’t Rutherford …

      • I doubt Dorion has any interest in Hornqvist – not such much because of his cap hit ($5.4 mil – they could easily absorb that) but because he turns 33 in January, his contract runs to 2023-24, and there’d be a legitimate question about his motivation after joining a rebuilding club. If Dorion is going to make such a trade it will be for a veteran closer to 27-28 with a hefty salary but running for only 1 or 2 years and from a team that MUST clear cap space. There are a few like that who are picking in the 9 to 18 slots which is the direction Dorion wants to go. A 21st pick is OK – but not worth taking on that length and for someone who might just be content to go through the motions. I’m afraid Hornqvist will be tougher to deal than Zaitzev.

      • MG

        If GMJR is offering up that 21st pick it better be to a team willing to take on JJ.

        Rutherford is brain dead and also won’t admit his mistake (signing JJ). This is costing this team tremendously.

        If history repeats; he will not unload JJ.

        If he isn’t, then he should keep the pick or move up if possibl.

        Setting aside the obvious no cup with JJ in line up…. logic is that the window is now… so using the 1st round pick, drafting a player that won’t be NHL bound for at least 2 years is not worth it.

        There is only one player that will go that late, IMO, that might have a shot at playing this year… Leason… and that is due to the combination of already being physically big enough to play but also 2 years older than the rest. He could be eased into the line up to get experience

        Although anything is possible with GMJR, I really don’t see Letang being traded.

        If I was GM, I would go bold…. call Sakic and offer Rust, ZAR, and JJ for Barrie. Sign Petterson. Pens D set and massively better than last year. Pens would then still have north of $6.5M in Cap space (and not need to sign ZAR) and could still consider another trade to move Hornquist, and then tap the UFA market.

        doable if he gets his head out of his a$%&ss

        Bitter Pens Fan

    • George, I actually like where the Sens are sitting…plenty of flexibility unlike a lot of teams….now with that said you still have to make smart moves… just look at a team like the wild to pick one….made a bunch of moves through the years made the playoffs most years but have zip to show for it and while they won’t they really need to start over….

      • That’s what constantly scares me 2001avsattack – the need for “smart moves” and Dorion in the same breath since every move will have Melnyk peeking over his shoulder right there at the draft table. I wish he’s stay the hell away and let his management do their jobs as they see fit rather than playing Uncle Scrooge. Sigh – if only he’d sell to Laliberté who WANTS the team AND a downtown arena to become the training home for the organization he started and is still; closely connected to – Le Cirque du Soleil.

      • I actually like where the Senators are sitting as well. With Dorion running the show I’m sure that’s where they will continue to sit.

  4. Kreider would fit right in with Bruins 2nd line he checks all the boxes

    • Yes he would. At the TDL for a 2nd.

      • By the deadline when teams can afford him and there is a lot of competition he gonna worth 1st

    • Yeah he checks all the boxes…couple things though….IIRC he had a chance to sign with the B’s before but chose NYR’s…what is it gonna take to get him cause he’s only got 1 year left under contract and can the B’s afford to re-sign him? Doubt that move happens….

      • But does getting to the finals make a player more interested in signing with said team? Agree Kreider be a great fit for Boston and they do have trade history with the Rangers. If that means anything.

      • That’s why I think it will be a straight up rental. Bruins window is next year, hopefully the year after.
        Father time is undefeated and Bergeron and Krecji are nearing that age when the inevitable decline starts to kick in.

      • Boston seems to need a puck carrier even more than Kreider style player. They can resign Johansson without giving up anything.

    • Trade proposal Kreider and a 4rd round pick to Boston for their 1st round pick.

  5. Sure, Sens may want a sweetener but they also need to reach the cap floor. So either they overpay mediocre UFA players and be stuck with them or make trades with salary dumps that expire in one to two years.

  6. The Wings won’t be moving their 1st round pick for Kreider. They need a top 4 defenseman rather than another forward.

    • Yzerfan,

      I know of a seasoned D Man that is considered top 4 by his GM that has 4 more years at $3.25M per…. can be had for a 7th rounder in 2033…. or better offer?

      • I think I would pass. Younger future Dmen. Detroit doesn’t need 3rd pair defensemen…

        He he.

      • Yzerfan

        I said the GM thinks he’s a 4D…. the rest of the league knows he shouldn’t be playing any regular pairing at all in the NHL

        …., he is horrifically brutal


  7. Didn’t Callahan retire. Isn’t that convenient for the Bolts. Or is going on LTIR?

    Do the Sens get another 1st rounder from Columbus if Duchene signs there? And is it only if he does so BEFORE July 1st?

    • Not sure of the date Dark G, but yes, they get their 1st round pick in 2020 – none of the sites I’ve checked say anything about July 1.

      • George , I don’t believe it matter pre or post July 1. The terms are if he re-signs. If there was a July 1 condition then CLB would have brokered the deal and let the clock tick.

      • That makes complete sense. Thanks Fergie. I didn’t think there was any specific date involved.

    • Ryan Callahan will not retire. If he retires, he’ll forfeit the remainder of his contract. He’ll go on injured reserve and collect the rest of his money. Then, and only then, he will retire. He wouldn’t be the first (MacArthur, Gaborik, Pronger, Horton)… and he won’t be the last.

      80% of his salary will come from the insurance company, the remainder the team picks-up. Meanwhile, the FULL salary goes against the cap.

      • Until the start of the season then it’s not against the cap.

    • Callahan will go on LTIR

      If Duchene re-signs with the Blue Jackets, Ottawa will receive Columbus’ 2020 1st round pick. (If the 2019 pick moves to 2020 as a result of the lottery and Duchene signs with Columbus, the 2020 conditional pick would then move to 2021).

  8. TBay screwed themselves will the multiple full NTC and NMC’s. Miller is the obvious choice to go if they want coin to sign Point however other GM’s could use that as leverage to bring the cost of return down.
    I would be interested in knowing if a player has a full NTC or NMC can they team owning his rights work a back door payment to get that player to agree to waive it ?

  9. I am looking at TBay roster & cap spend and Brisebois is going to have to pull a rabbit out of his a@@ to get Point signed. Especially if someone offers a huge contract. 17 players signed , under 6 mil in cap left to fill out the roster to 23 players. 5.8 in LTIR for Callahan only comes after the puck drops.

  10. Late to the game again

    Missed all the fun

    Re: taking on “dead” contracts.

    George, please before you shoot me….please hear me out.

    Sens are in the rebuilding mode and are moving in the right direction. Great pieces and loads of picks… setting up well for about 3 years from now.

    with the cap being so precarious and absolutely meaning nothing this year to Ottawa; I look am looking at a scenarios where pieces of their future can be parsed down in essence to just a financial payment.

    Putting aside that players would need to accept the trade/waive etc.; I would pay $1.6M for aquiring the following prospects (that is $1.6M total): Whitecloud (VGK), Raddysh (TBay), and Johnsson OR Kappy (Leafs)… these are just names I’ve pulled out of a hat from their relative teams but I believe a similar mix would come back for:

    accepting: Clarkson, Horton, Calahan AFTER 1/7 (when any bonuses are paid)…. the remaining Sens portion (after ins. payment) of Salary is about $1.6M… total Cap hit is almost $16.4 M and Sens have that space in spades (and this is ONLY for 19/20; nothing beyond).

    Again, I expect George to lambaste me; but just from a planning perspective; I would fork over a one time $1.6M just to aquire a trio similar to Whitecloud, Raddysh, and Kappy or Johnsson.

    Add to that the young roster they have now and the picks coming…. Sens will be dressing a very good team in 3 years.

    Just a business man looking at this pragmatically without emotion.

    • LOL. Naw, never lambaste you Pengy – you make a lot of sense with what you say – but as I keep repeating, when it comes to contracts like Horton’s, Callahan’s and Clarkson’s Dorion just doesn’t think like that. Nor, I need not add, does Melnyk.

      As for more picks, he already has 28 over the next three drafts and since there is absolutely NO point in keeping them all, I fully expect he’ll be dealing some soon in order to acquire 27- 28 y/o veteran type players with, as I say, “healthy” contracts with 1 or 2 years left from those teams that absolutely need to shed salary before the season starts. And there are lots of those.

      As for players like Kapanen and Johnsson, again I seriously doubt Dorion is interested in doing Dubas any favors after that open-the-vault up-front money he threw at Tavares which many (if not most) other franchises simply cannot (or will not) do. Besides, their own kids coming up like Batherson, Brown, Norris, Formenton, Abramov are as good as, and perhaps better, than both. Same with Raddysh. As for Whitecloud, they now run deep with D prospects of their own and on top of that, I think 1 or 2 of the veteran-types I mention above that he’ll be seeking are likely D-men.

      • Thanks George for not throwing daggers

        Agree he shouldn’t do Leafs any favours but I gotta as dealing strictly from a business perspective

        Best deal in s for Whitecloud OR another VGK prospect … after July 1 …. $1M owed in Sal … so non ins. Portion (actual cost to Sens) would be $200 K

        Getting a prospect for $200 K is pittance

        Agree Sens prospect D depth is good but adding another ; developing further and then moving / casting off one of those developed D , down the road , for a top 9 winger …. all for an initial investment of 200 K … prudent to me…. extremely little downside with a chance at a very good upside (that being Whitecloud developing faster and/or becoming better, than some current Sens D prospects

        Sens future looking good and I agree that some of the cupboard full of upcoming picks will be moved for mid/late 20’s talent

        A hybrid of both types of moves (trade futures for some new roster players) AND taking on a dead contract for an up and comer; just might be what is in store

        I’m more anticipatory to the Sens moves than Pens and to some extent , Leafs

        Will be interesting

      • Dorion is probably the last guy in the NHL to help Dubas out and to be fair it would be the exact same if the scenarios were reversed and there is nothing wrong with that.

      • George, I think you’re a little like a leaf fan you over value your prospects. The Ahl team couldn’t even make the playoffs. I don’t think Ottawa’s prospects are all guaranteed NHL players

  11. Have to respectfully disagree about Kreider not warranting a 1st rounder. Look at all the guys on expiring contracts that get traded at the deadline for 1st rounder PLUS (Nash and Hayes just from the NYR alone). Kreider is on an even team friendlier contract than many of those players and he’s a lock to score 20+ goals a season. He’s a top net front presence on the power play. He almost always wins puck battles along the boards and he’s so fast that the NYR orchestrate breakout plays around him. If the Rangers get less than a first round pick plus a legit prospect I’d be surprised and very disappointed.

  12. In the Phaneuf trade the leafs did take 3 bad contracts from the senators