NHL Rumor Mill – November 19, 2019
The latest on the Flames, Leafs, and Oilers in today’s NHL rumor mill.
ARE THE FLAMES SHOPPING FOR HELP?
SPORTSNET: With the Calgary Flames struggling to score and tumbling in the standings, Eric Francis reports general manager Brad Treliving is looking long and hard at possible moves to bolster his roster. With NHL GMs meeting in Toronto today, Treliving has an opportunity to commiserate with Leafs GM Kyle Dubas. Francis suggests a swap of Tyson Barrie for TJ Brodie but their salary-cap hits would make that move difficult to achieve.
Francis also said unhappy Flames fans are calling for winger Johnny Gaudreau to be traded. He feels the odds are against Treliving doing anything that monumental until next summer. “However, should this team fail to make the playoffs or fall short of winning at least one round this summer you can bet Gaudreau will start to be shopped,” said Francis.
SPECTOR’S NOTE: Brodie’s recent health scare makes him difficult to move right now. His name came up in off-season trade speculation but there’s no indication the Flames were looking into trading him during this season. If the Leafs were to move Barrie, they could have better options than Brodie in mind.
As for Gaudreau, I don’t believe Treliving intends to move one of his leading scorers. Maybe he’ll consider such a shakeup if the Flames miss the postseason, but that could be an over-reaction. Gaudreau’s not the only Flame struggling to score right now. After dominating the Western Conference last season, perhaps the roster is guilty of complacency this season.
UPDATE ON BARRIE
SPORTSNET: Chris Johnston believes this is not the time for the Toronto Maple Leafs to trade Tyson Barrie. He cited colleague Elliotte Friedman reporting teams had inquired into the right-shot rearguard’s availability.
The pending free agent defenseman is off to the least productive start of any season in his NHL career. His market value is at an all-time low and his cap hit ($2.75 million) with the Leafs won’t free up enough cap room for a suitable replacement.
There’s also no guarantee a trade will help him regain his offensive touch. Johnston feels the best course of action is to see if he can rediscover his game with the Leafs, something both sides are believed to be focusing on.
SPECTOR’S NOTE: At this stage in the season, it’s tough to make a good player-for-player swap. Those factors raised by Johnston make moving Barrie more difficult. The blueliner could surface again in the trade-rumor mill if his stats fail to improve in the coming weeks, especially if the Leafs fail to halt their current slide in the standings.
For now, the search for No. 3 offensive C is still ongoing for Ken Holland too. And yes, like everybody else in the league, they’re wondering about Ottawa’s speedy UFA J.G. Pageau and what it would take to get him.
— Jim Matheson (@NHLbyMatty) November 17, 2019
SPECTOR’S NOTE: The Senators could attempt to move Pageau by the Feb. 24 trade deadline if unable to re-sign him before then. The Oilers could be among the suitors if they’re still in playoff contention by that point.