Sunday NHL Rumor Roundup – October 13, 2019
Updates on the Devils, Oilers, and Penguins in today’s NHL Sunday rumor roundup.
FATE OF DEVILS’ HALL AND HYNES IN THE SPOTLIGHT
SPORTSNET: Elliotte Friedman reports the New Jersey Devils’ slow start has some observers wondering how patient they’ll be with Taylor Hall. The 27-year-old winger could become the big fish in next summer’s free-agent pond.
Friedman speculates rival general managers could start calling Devils GM Ray Shero about his plans if he can’t re-sign Hall. However, he feels it’s far too early for Shero to consider shopping the winger.
Colleague Chris Johnston said there hasn’t been much contract talk lately between the two sides. He feels it’s an ongoing process but doesn’t dismiss the possibility of an extension being dependent upon the outcome of this season.
NEW YORK POST: Larry Brooks suggests the Devils’ sluggish start could put head coach John Hynes on the hot seat. While Shero is a loyal and patient general manager, there’s a sense of urgency this season. Brooks thinks Scott Stevens might make a good replacement for Hynes.
SPECTOR’S NOTE: Speculation over Hall’s future has been ongoing since the summer. The longer he goes unsigned the more conjecture will arise over his status with the Devils. I agree with Johnston that this season’s outcome could be a determining factor.
Given the Devils’ big off-season additions and Hall’s pending free-agent status, Hynes must quickly find a way to get his club on the winning side of the ledger or he’ll end up paying the price. A few wins in the Devils’ upcoming games will turn down much of that heat.
LATEST OILERS SPECULATION
Johnston reports Jesse Puljujarvi is comfortable with spending the season in Finland. The 21-year-old restricted free agent winger is waiting for the Edmonton Oilers to honor his trade request. The Oilers have until Dec. 1 to sign him or trade him to a club that will sign him. Otherwise, he’ll be ineligible for the rest of his NHL season.
EDMONTON JOURNAL: Kurt Leavins reports there’s some talk the Oilers could have interest in Carolina Hurricanes winger Julien Gauthier, who saw fourth-line duty against Columbus on Saturday. His waiver-exempt status could also make him an attractive trade option.
SPECTOR’S NOTE: Should the Oilers continue playing well leading up to Dec. 1 they won’t be under any pressure to move Puljujarvi. If a suitable return isn’t found they’ll let him spend the season in Finland and try signing or trading him next summer.
Unless the Oilers are willing to offer up something worthwhile, Hurricanes GM Don Waddell has no reason to trade Gauthier. Like the Oilers, the Canes are off to a great start and Waddell’s not facing pressure to swing a deal right now.
NO SUITABLE DEALS YET FOR THE PENGUINS
Friedman reports Pittsburgh Penguins general manager Jim Rutherford is willing to deal from his blueline depth for a forward. However, he hasn’t found anything worthwhile in the trade market. He’s not interested in moving his 2020 first-round pick.
SPECTOR’S NOTE: Rutherford will remain patient while Evgeni Malkin and Nick Bjugstad recover from their injuries. If there’s nothing suitable in the trade market he’s got little choice but to wait for his two sidelined centers to return.