NHL Rumor Mill – January 4, 2020
Potential trade destinations for Chris Kreider, potential trade targets for the Flames, plus the latest on the Predators and Jets in today’s NHL rumor mill.
POTENTIAL DESTINATIONS FOR KREIDER
SPORTSNET: suggests the St. Louis Blues, Boston Bruins, Pittsburgh Penguins, and Colorado Avalanche as possible destinations for Chris Kreider if the New York Rangers decide to move him before the Feb. 24 trade deadline.
The Blues could use a short-term replacement for sidelined winger Vladimir Tarasenko. With Tarasenko on long-term injury reserve, they have the cap space to take on Kreider’s $4.65-million annual average salary. The Blues are currently riding high in the Western Conference standings, so there’s no pressure on general manager Doug Armstrong to make a major move.
Kreider would provide a welcome boost to the Bruins’ secondary scoring, but they’d have to clear salary-cap space to make room for him. Ditto the injury-riddled Penguins. The Avalanche, meanwhile, have plenty of cap space for Kreider and to add another impact player if they wish. He would give them additional secondary scoring depth.
SPECTOR’S NOTE: The Avs appear in the best position to take a run at Kreider. Having passed on Taylor Hall, he could be a more affordable option.
The Blues could pursue Kreider if Tarasenko isn’t expected back until the playoffs. Even then, Armstrong could be reluctant to tinker too much with his club’s winning chemistry.
The Bruins and Penguins definitely could use Kreider, but it could cost them a good young roster player. It means shedding salary even if the Rangers are willing to pick up part of Kreider’s.
POSSIBLE TRADE OPTIONS FOR THE FLAMES
SPORTSNET: Eric Francis suggested Kreider, Los Angeles Kings winger Tyler Toffoli, Florida Panthers winger Mike Hoffman, Edmonton Oilers winger Zack Kassian, and Florida Panthers winger Evgenii Dadonov as trade targets for the Calgary Flames.
SPECTOR’S NOTE: The Flames need another top-six forward, preferably a winger. Toffoli seems the best fit, depending on what the Kings seek in return.
Kreider has a modified no-trade clause. The Flames might not be among his preferred destinations.
As long as the Panthers remain in the playoff chase, they’re not parting with pending UFAs Hoffman and Dadonov. Ditto Kassian to the Flames. Indeed, I think the Oilers intend to re-sign him.
PREDATORS GM NOT CONSIDERING A COACHING CHANGE
YAHOO! SPORTS: Thomas Williams cites Nashville Predators GM David Poile telling a local radio station he isn’t considering replacing head coach Peter Laviolette. With the Predators struggling and the Feb. 24 trade deadline on the horizon, Williams speculates they could be buyers or sellers depending on where they are in the standings in the coming weeks.
“I think the standings are so close right now that when things get closer to the trade deadline, you could possibly see more action,” Poile said. “I guess the point I’m saying today is, sitting here outside of the playoffs, we have for the last several years been buyers at the trading deadline. If we don’t improve here shortly, we might be a seller for the first time in a number of years.
“I’m hoping that’s not the case, but as I said, I am open for business and I’m certainly going to be willing to listen to different teams’ thought processes on any of our players at this point.”
Even though the Kevin Hayes deal didn’t work out the way the Paul Stastny move did a year earlier, the #NHLJets won’t be scared to try again…”If the circumstances are right.” – according to GM Kevin Cheveldayoff. That doesn’t mean it’s likely, but it remains an option
— Ken Wiebe (@WiebeAthletic) December 30, 2019