NHL Rumor Mill – November 4, 2019
Could the Blues pursue Taylor Hall or Chris Kreider? Are changes coming soon to the struggling Sharks? Should the Blackhawks shop Erik Gustafsson? Check out the latest in the NHL rumor mill.
COULD HALL OR KREIDER INTEREST THE BLUES?
NEW YORK POST: Larry Brooks suggests Taylor Hall didn’t sound like he’s planning to re-sign with the New Jersey Devils after he went off on Devils fans following a 7-6 loss to the Tampa Bay Lightning on Wednesday. He wonders if Devils general manager Ray Shero will start soliciting trade offers if the pending UFA decides to move on or wait until the trade deadline.
Brooks thinks the St. Louis Blues could be primed to land Hall sooner rather than later after losing winger Vladimir Tarasenko to shoulder surgery. He also speculates they might have some interest in New York Rangers pending UFA Chris Kreider.
SPECTOR’S NOTE: Unless Shero gets a great offer for Hall before January he’ll probably wait until close to the Feb. 24 trade deadline to move the winger. The Devils will want a significant return for the 2018 Hart Trophy winner. Kreider will be a more affordable acquisition than Hall. Time will tell if the Blues are among the suitors for either guy.
CHANGES COMING SOON FOR THE STRUGGLING SHARKS?
THE MERCURY NEWS: Curtis Pashelka wonders if a small or drastic move might be ahead for the San Jose Sharks. With a record of 4-10-1, they’re sitting at the bottom of the Western Conference standings.
Pashelka pointed out GM Doug Wilson made moves to snap his club out of previous doldrums. The biggest was in 2005 when he acquired Joe Thornton from the Boston Bruins.
SPECTOR’S NOTE: The Sharks are struggling in goal and still haven’t adjusted to the offseason departures of forwards Joe Pavelski and Joonas Donskoi. If Wilson decides to make a significant move it could be in the crease. However, there isn’t much of a market for goaltenders right now.
SHOULD THE BLACKHAWKS PUT GUSTAFSSON ON THE BLOCK?
CHICAGO TRIBUNE: Jimmy Greenfield believes the Blackhawks should trade defenseman Erik Gustafsson for a return that helps their ongoing rebuild. If recent call-up Adam Boqvist proves he’s here to stay, Gustafsson no longer has an obvious spot in the lineup.
The pending UFA is coming off a career season (60 points) but he’s struggled this season and was a recent heathy scratch. Greenfield feels there’s little chance Gustafsson re-signs with the Blackhawks.
GM Stan Bowman could wait until the trade deadline when Gustafsson’s value could be higher. Greenfield speculates Bowman explored this summer’s trade market and didn’t discover much of a market for a blueliner with one good season in his resume.
SPECTOR’S NOTE: If Gustafsson’s performance doesn’t improve he won’t fetch much of a return regardless of when he’s put on the trade block.