NHL Rumor Mill – November 2, 2019
Recent speculation on the Rangers, Sharks, Oilers, and Sabres in today’s NHL rumor mill.
DEANGELO AND STROME PLAYING THEIR WAY OUT OF NEW YORK?
NEW YORK POST: Larry Brooks believes the more points Tony DeAngelo and Ryan Strome collect this season, the more likely they’ll price themselves out of the New York Rangers. The pair are restricted free agents next summer with salary arbitration rights.
The Rangers could be squeezed again for salary-cap space, especially if the cap only rises by 2.5 percent as it did for this season. Brooks speculates DeAngelo could seek an annual average value between $4 – $4.5 million on a two-year contract while Strome could ask for a one-year deal worth between $4.5 – $5 million.
SPECTOR’S NOTE: Strome (10 points) sits third among Rangers scorers while DeAngelo (eight points) is their highest-scoring defenseman. It’s still early and their production could decline throughout the season. But if they put up decent numbers, the Rangers could have a difficult time re-signing them. That could make one or both of them trade candidates.
SHARKS NEED HELP BETWEEN THE PIPES
THE HOCKEY NEWS: Jared Clinton believes the San Jose Sharks must find a solution to their goaltending problem before it’s too late. Martin Jones and Aaron Dell have struggled since last season.
Clinton acknowledged there’s no blue-chipper available in their system and no clear-cut option in the free-agent market. They also have limited salary-cap space. Jones’ contract ($5.75-million annual average value) and declining play makes him difficult to move. Nevertheless, Clinton feels they must do something to address this problem, even if it’s a cheap short-term solution.
SPECTOR’S NOTE: Jonathan Quick of the Los Angeles Kings is the only noteworthy goalie mentioned in recent trade rumors. Unfortunately, he’s performing no better than Jones and Dell. Sharks general manager Doug Wilson could be forced to remain patient in hope better options become available in the coming weeks.
TWO-WAY CENTER TRADE OPTIONS FOR THE OILERS
THE ATHLETIC: Allan Mitchell believes the Edmonton Oilers are in need of another two-way center. Possible trade options include the Ottawa Senators’ Jean-Gabriel Pageau, the Winnipeg Jets’ Mathieu Perreault or Jack Roslovic, the Calgary Flames’ Mark Jankowski or the Toronto Maple Leafs’ Nic Petan. Mitchell considers Jankowski the most attractive choice.
SPECTOR’S NOTE: Pageau is slated to become a UFA next summer. if the Senators shop him it’ll likely be closer to the Feb. 24 trade deadline when they could find more suitors and possibly better offers.
Mitchell suggested dangling a defenseman like Kris Russell or Matt Benning to the Jets. I doubt either one will entice the Jets to part with Perreault or Roslovic. They won’t improve the Jets’ porous defense.
Calgary seems an unlikely trade partner but they did swap Milan Lucic and James Neal during the offseason. It would depend the Flames’ roster needs and whether the Oilers are willing to meet that price.
Mitchell wrote this piece before Petan was assigned to the minors. He’s not on the Oilers’ radar.
SABRES NOT PLANNING TO MOVE A DEFENSEMAN
THE BUFFALO NEWS: In a recent mailbag segment, Lance Lysowski was asked which defenseman the Buffalo Sabres will trade when Brandon Montour returns from injury. Lysowski doesn’t believe any of them will be moved for the time being. They have no salary-cap restrictions with Zach Bogosian on long-term injury reserve. He acknowledged they might have to create room at some point but there’s no rush.
SPECTOR’S NOTE: Rasmus Ristolainen was a frequent subject of trade chatter this summer. However, his improved play under new coach Ralph Krueger could make the Sabres reluctant to part with him. Marco Scandella was recently floated as a trade option. He’s eligible for unrestricted free agent status next July.