NHL Rumor Mill – December 13, 2019
BOGOSIAN ASKS FOR A TRADE
THE BUFFALO NEWS: Lance Lysowski cited TSN’s Darren Dreger reporting Buffalo Sabres defenseman Zach Bogosian has requested a trade. He was a healthy scratch from Thursday’s 4-3 win over the Nashville Predators. Injuries limited him from playing more than 65 games per season with the Sabres. He missed the first 22 games of this season recovering from hip surgery. Sabres general manager Jason Botterill declined to comment.
Lysowski also noted Sportsnet’s Elliotte Friedman reported Botterill recently inquired into the availability of Pittsburgh Penguins winger Alex Galchenyuk. Both players will become unrestricted free agents in July.
SPECTOR’S NOTE: Bogosian lacks no-trade protection, but his injury history and $5.14-million annual average value make him a difficult sell. I don’t think the Penguins are interested in a Bogosian-for-Galchenyuk swap. They’ve got limited salary-cap space and GM Jim Rutherford could be more interested in adding a winger.
ARE THE CANADIENS AND BLACKHAWKS TALKING TRADE?
NBC SPORTS CHICAGO: Charlie Roumeliotis wonders if the Montreal Canadiens are eyeing a possible trade with the Blackhawks. He points out they’ve been frequently scouting the Blackhawks AHL affiliate in Rockford. Habs GM Marc Bergevin has been spotted several times at the United Center this season.
It’s believed the Canadiens are in the market for a left-shot defenseman. Erik Gustafsson is a UFA at season’s end. Roumeliotis said there have been no contract talks between the two sides.
SPECTOR’S NOTE: Gustafsson could be an affordable rental for the Habs, but I don’t think he’s the solution for their blueline woes. He’s a skilled puck-mover, but he doesn’t play a strong defensive game.
CANUCKS SEEK A TOP-SIX FORWARD
SPORTSNET: Iain MacIntyre reports Vancouver Canucks GM Jim Benning admits he’s in the market for a scoring winger before the Feb. 24 trade deadline if a deal makes sense. The health of sidelined winger Micheal Ferland could affect their need to add another forward.
SPECTOR’S NOTE: No indication who Benning could target. I daresay it’s hypothetical depending on Ferland’s health at this point. If the Canucks remain in the thick of the playoff chase by February, Benning could pull the trigger on an affordable rental option. And no, I don’t see him getting into the bidding for New Jersey’s Taylor Hall.
The keyword is affordable. His first-round pick in the 2020 Draft is a conditional one that could belong to the Tampa Bay Lightning, and he could be unwilling to part with his second-rounder.