NHL Rumor Mill – February 19, 2020

by | Feb 19, 2020 | Rumors | 78 comments

Alec Martinez is reportedly on the verge of becoming a Golden Knight, more talk of Jeff Carter returning to the Flyers, the latest on Chris Kreider, and much more in today’s NHL rumor mill.


LOS ANGELES TIMES/LAS VEGAS REVIEW-JOURNAL: cited TSN’s Bob McKenzie yesterday reporting the Los Angeles Kings and Vegas Golden Knights are close to finalizing a deal sending defenseman Alec Martinez to the Golden Knights for two second-round draft picks. The move is expected to be completed today. Martinez was held out of last night’s game against Winnipeg for precautionary reasons.

THE ATHLETIC’s Jesse Granger suspects the delay could be salary-cap related on the Golden Knights side.

**UPDATE** The trade has been completed, with Martinez heading to the Golden Knights for a second-round pick in 2020 and a second-rounder in 2021.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: The Golden Knights have been in the market for a top-four, right-side defenseman for some time. There was talk they were eyeing New Jersey’s Sami Vatanen, but that no longer appears the case.

Martinez, 32, would bring a welcome presence on the Vegas blueline. He’s got plenty of postseason experience, winning two Stanley Cups with the Kings. He’s also signed through 2020-21 with an affordable $4-million annual average value. The Golden Knights could shift Shea Theodore to the left side and pair him with Martinez.


SPORTSNET: Elliotte Friedman thinks the Philadelphia Flyers could consider bringing back Jeff Carter, depending on the health of young center Nolan Patrick.

NBC SPORTS PHILADELPHIA: Jordan Hall points out how difficult it would be for the Flyers to pull that off. They have just over $2 million in salary-cap space, meaning there’s not enough to acquire Carter even if the Kings absorbed half of his $5.2-million AAV. They would have to do some cap juggling for the remaining two years of his contract. There’s also the question of what the Kings would want in return, and what assets the Flyers can spare.

More talk of the Philadelphia Flyers bringing back Jeff Carter (Photo via NHL Images).

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Stranger things have happened, and it would make a nice story for Carter to return to the city where his NHL career began. Given the cap difficulties, however, Flyers GM Chuck Fletcher could be forced to seek more affordable alternatives.


SPORTSNET: Elliotte Friedman believes the Boston Bruins, Colorado Avalanche, New York Islanders, and St. Louis Blues could be interested in New York Rangers left wing Chris Kreider. The Washington Capitals could be a stealth candidate, but their recent acquisition of defenseman Brenden Dillon probably takes them out of the bidding.

TSN: Frank Seravalli reports the Avalanche and Bruins are the front-runners for Kreider. He also lists the Blues, Capitals, and Florida Panthers among others who could come calling.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: The Athletic’s Jeremy Rutherford reports the Blues’ acquisition of defenseman Marco Scandella could be the only move they make at the deadline. Sidelined winger Vladimir Tarasenko is recovering well from early-season shoulder surgery and could return before the end of the season. Colorado Hockey Now’s Adrian Dater believes the Avs could target Montreal Canadiens winger Tomas Tatar if they fail to land Kreider.


SPORTSNET: Elliotte Friedman reports Florida Panthers center Vincent Trocheck is garnering attention. The 26-year-old has two year left on his contract with an annual average value of $4.75 million. Friedman feels most teams can afford that, though he won’t be inexpensive.

TSN: Pierre LeBrun doesn’t believe the Panthers are shopping Trocheck but acknowledged teams are calling about him. The Panthers desperately need a top-four defenseman, so they have little choice but to listen to offers. He wonders if they might have an interest in Minnesota Wild blueliner Jonas Brodin, but gets the sense Wild GM Bill Guerin wants to retain Brodin.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Panthers GM Dale Tallon will want a defenseman for Trocheck. Failing that, he might have to get creative. LeBrun suggested dealing the center for picks and prospects that could be flogged to another club for a top-four blueliner.


SPORTSNET: Elliotte Friedman wonders if a lack of progress in contract talks is affecting Chicago Blackhawks goaltender Robin Lehner, who was unusually quiet during a recent game. The Carolina Hurricanes are reportedly interested in Lehner and have an extra first-round pick to dangle as trade bait.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: With the Blackhawks’ playoff hopes fading, GM Stan Bowman could listen to offers for Lehner if he remains unsigned by the deadline. We’ll see what happens.


TSN: Pierre LeBrun reports New Jersey Devils winger Wayne Simmonds remains a player of interest for the Vancouver Canucks. Their recent acquisition of Tyler Toffoli was related to filling the gap left by the sidelined Brock Boeser. They still haven’t found a suitable replacement for Micheal Ferland, who’s out for the season due to concussion symptoms. Simmonds has an eight-team no-trade list, but the Canucks aren’t believed to be on it.

SPORTSNET: Elliotte Friedman also thinks the Canucks could consider adding Simmonds, but that could be difficult to do without a first- or second-round pick in this year’s draft.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: LeBrun believes the Canucks will still add toughness if they can’t land Simmonds. They could be faced with considering more affordable options. Vancouver GM Jim Benning surprised us with his acquisition of Toffoli, so he could have another trick up his sleeve before the deadline.


THE DETROIT NEWS: Ted Kulfan reports injuries to contending teams could bolster the trade value of Red Wings forward Andreas Athanasiou. The Colorado Avalanche, Edmonton Oilers, and Vancouver Canucks could be in play.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Oilers general manager (and former Red Wings GM) Ken Holland might be interested in Athanasiou. However, TSN’s Bob McKenzie reports the Oilers’ injuries and winger Zack Kassian’s seven-game suspension is creating problems for how Holland will approach the deadline. While he’d love a third-line center like Ottawa’s Jean-Gabriel Pageau for a right-winger for Connor McDavid’s line, he’s not prepared to part with a first-round pick and a top prospect for a rental player. Many of those injured Oilers aren’t on long-term injury reserve, giving Holland limited cap space.

The Canucks’ acquisition of Tyler Toffoli likely rules them out for Athanasiou. He could be a fall-back choice if the Avs lose out in the bidding for Kreider.


THE ATHLETIC: Pierre LeBrun speculates the Montreal Canadiens could likely trade winger Ilya Kovalchuk if an agreement on a contract extension can’t be reached before the trade deadline. He suggests the Avalanche and Bruins as possible destinations.


  1. Good morning guys …


    Would bringing Carter say in a away that Fletcher was trigger happy and paid out Hayes too much, why bring in another hefty salary centre ..Hayes was suppose to be that guy he was paid to be !
    I was never a Nolan Patrick fan regardless of his injuries ..if anyone has read my posts in the past you’d know my feeling on that draft pick ..

    Sean Cotourier has been the best contract in the NHL for the past 5 years hands down ..silent and deadly again with no fan fare !


    While I know some Canucks fans posted yesterday that they were a bit upset at Benning giving up high draft picks for a rental …I REALLY love what Benning is doing and the message he is sending as stated in my post yesterday …
    Its not about winning the Cup but more so moving forward and taking a step for the group .

    He is getting Vezina goal tending …Calder style D from Hughes and teh depth of this team is being tested ..wit a myraid of bad injuries ..I really love that this GM DID SOMETHING …and I love it even more that Toffoli is going to play with Petterson.
    I also dont think it is out of any relm that Toffoli signs in Van ..he could be more than just a rental


    While it seems as if Ryan Miller is attached to the Avs right now ..I think Lehner should be there guy I have not been a fan of his during his tenure in Buffalo …BUT he has really made strides and he could take that team deep ! !
    Better than what they got …or can get otherwise …and they have the space !

    Final note :
    The Habs have NO CHOICE but to trade KOVI ….considering all the amazing draft picks they have in 2020 they should trade him for a YOUNG prospect instead of another draft pick
    get something you can hang you hat on…and move forward ..in any regards HE HAS TO GO ..the Habs have no business trying to climb the standings …get into a lottery pick Bergevin …
    MY GOODNESS…time to take care of business.

    thx for reading


    • Just wanted to point this out …

      Did not want to post too much on Leafs for obvious reasons… LOL ..but ..

      Since declining the very serviceable Curtis Mchilhenney …who will now be making less than jack Campbell ….LOL….Leafs have given up and WASTED

      a 5th Round draft pick in 2020 to get Hutchinson
      and a 2nd Round draft pick to get … Soupy

      In essence they had the player they needed at the cap hit they needed the entire time …

      This INEPTNESS cost them 2 draft picks in a deep draft to where as in they now hardly have any draft picks …just for a back up goalie !

      They then traded Kadri with a 2020 draft pick for Barrie & Kerfoot ..LOL ..kerfoot is a bust and Barrie will walk.

      They then SOLD Marleau to the Canes for a 2nd and a 7th round draft pick in 2020 …

      they also gave up a 1st for Muzzin and a player ..

      I like Muzzin ..but the rest is just a waste… WOW!!

      • Hi Kal El

        To add insult to injury wrt to the exodus of Leafs’ picks; I just wanted to point out that Carolina got a 1st (in ‘20 or ‘21), not a 2nd for Marleau

        BTW ….Canes effectively bought a 1st for $3.8 M!!!

      • Time to shop out one or two of Tavares, marner or nylander. We need defense as I can’t bear to watch marincin on the ice anymore. Holl is pretty bad as well. They are tough to watch this season.

      • @kal I find it hard to argue with what you are saying but the thinking with machillini at the time was do we lose the ahl goalie of the year or machillini. He made the wrong choice but I think most people get it. No matter what he was losing 2 goalies. I make the trade for Campbell all day though he’s been a great backup so far for us and he’s locked up for 2 more years at a very fair number. Lamorello saddled us with Marleau and it cost us a first to get rid of him. It was a trade he had to make to clear up the 6.5 million cap hit. It’s the cap hit that mattered not the salary owed. Kadri is a tough pill to swallow but Barrie was coming off an almost 60 point season plus we got a serviceable 3rd line center and salary was retained. Barry is not working out on Toronto so would love to trade him especially at these inflated prices but I doubt Dubas has the guts. Kadri was expendable since he’s a second line center pushed to 3rd on a deep Toronto team. Dubas needs to keep more of there pics to stay competitive as they’re proving to be very good at getting quality players at the draft. Dubas is a rookie gm and it’s showing but Lou didn’t help this team much in his 3 years.

      • @ Pengy

        yes my mistake …I knew that TYPO..

      • Kali El for me I think the biggest mistake was getting rid of Kadri. Love the player hopefully doesn’t make the same mistake again.

        Also I’ll say this this hit on Debrusk that sent Kadri to the press box, unfortunately changed the way Debrusk has played his game ever since. Debrusk no longer initiate contact and doesn’t drive the net as he did prior. Concussion can have the affect on a player, hopefully Jake will regain his confidence and lose the fear of contact.

      • I agree with Caper.
        I saw/see it the same way.

  2. Bergevin is getting lots of plaudits for the Scandella trade. And it was a good trade – but it seems to me as a microcosm of his tenure over the last few years.
    He does the small things well, but in the end, they don’t add up to much. Picking up a player for a 4th and then trading him for a 2nd is good asset management, but in the end, who knows if it’ll make a difference.
    Case in point. Over Bergevin’s first two drafts, 2012 and 2013, he had five 2nd round picks . Three of them never played in the NHL (although Collberg at least got them the Thomas Vanek rental which helped get them to the conference final in 2014). Jacob De La Rose is a fringe NHLer on his third team in the last two seasons. Arturi Lehkonen is a solid middle six forward.
    So to sum up, a solid forward and a fringe player out of five 2nd round picks. That’s not the exception. That’s pretty much par for the course for 2nd rounders.

    • Nice summation Howard

    • and he passed on M. Tkachuk for Kotiekiemi (sp) … perfect example of why you never draft for position …

      • While generally the right philosophy, Habs were literally dying for want of centers and I still think KK will turnout well.

      • @ Shaun

        while KK may turn out ..OK ..he does not hold a candle to Tkachuck …uggg

    • Montreal needs to accept they need to rebuild. Until then they will hover around the wild card spot with no hope of improving. The Price signing is one of the worst in NHL history and will saddle them for years. They have no top end prospects just a bunch of players that might be ok in the NHL. They need to blow the team up and tank for the next couple of years. Trade Petey, Tatar, Drouin, Domi, Weber and Price if you can find a sucker. Use the cap space to get pics and prospects from other teams in time for the expansion draft when other teams will give a high price to unload there bad signings. They could be contending again within 5 years.

      • Re: Price. If they do decide to try and trade Price, it’ll probably be during the expansion draft next year. If Carey decides he doesn’t want to wait for a rebuild, he can waive his NMC, and Bergevin’s can make a move similar to the Fleury move, taking picks and prospects from Seattle for leaving Price exposed, or trading him right after the draft. Seattle makes sense for Price, close to home for him, and no real Canadian media harassing him.

      • @parkside Pittsburgh gave Vegas the picks and prospects to take Fleury off there hands. Price makes 5 million a year more than Fleury made back then and has not played well for a few years now. Montreal will have to give up a ton for any team including Seattle to take that albatross of a contract

      • Pens had to pay vegas a 2nd round pick to ensure maf was taken. Seattle won’t send Montreal something to take that contract on. Either price would be the pick straight up or mont would have to pay Seattle.

      • Jinx!

      • Can’t post till someone tries your name Roger!

    • Still around Howard? I’ve said before several times that in every first round about half the draft picks are busts. If you go back to through the past 10 years the Habs haven’t missed a great pick that was there for the taking. In Aho’s draft year, 8 other teams passed before Carolina picked him.

      Even then, look at the problems in Edmonton: Is it 4 – # 1 picks they have had and even with McDavid and Draisaitl they are still below average and struggling.

      Something is not working in Montreal. And Buffalo. And Edmonton. And Nashville. Ok, enough.

      My point is that rare is the sure draft pick. So much depends on things that are hard to judge: otherwise every team would take player available to them that is shown to be the best at the time, make clever, one sided trades and worship the right diety.

      In other words, few GMs seem to have it all figured out.

  3. A trade for Carter makes no sence for the Flyers, another 2 years left on a 5.3 mill contract for a past his prime 3rd center, no, no, no.
    Trocheck to the Flyers for Gostisbehere makes much much more sence.
    Both players same age, both players have near the same dollar for dollar contracts, Ghost 3 years left at 4.5 and Trocheck 2 years left at 4.7.
    Flyers have too many defensemen, Ghost would benefit greatly with a change to the team he grew up chearing for and attended their games with his grandpa, trade fills a need for both teams.
    Get er done Fletch.

  4. A Flyer trade for Carter makes no sence, 2 more years left on a 5.7 mill contract for a past his prime 3rd line center no, no, no.

    A Ghostisbehere trade for Trocheck makes much much more sence, both players same age, both players have near same dollar for dollar contracts Ghost signed for 3 more years Trocheck for 2 more. Flyers have too many defensemen, Ghost would benefit greatly going to the team that he grew up chearing for and attended their games with his grandpa and he would put butts in some of those empty seats that Florida has so many of.
    Trade fills a need for both teams.
    Get er done Fletch.

    • Sorry for the double post. Didn’t think the first one went through

    • im not so sure im giving up on Ghostisbiere yet … might be a confidence thing .. smooth skating d-men with skill are hard to find … guys like Trocheck are a dime a dozen …

      • Crazy talk right here.
        Trochek is an absolute stud having a bad year, he hits, plays shorthanded and has a scoring touch as well. Think of Kadri but better defensively and more disciplined.
        Ghost on the other hand is a defensive liability with offensive upside. I’m pretty sure the Flyer in this case is the dime a dozen guy

      • Trochek is on year 2 of down years. This is deeply concerning. He hasn’t looked anything like the player he was 3 years ago.

        At 26 years old, I wouldn’t be giving up on him, but this regression is concerning.

  5. So how do you Maple Loaves feel about your d after last night’s thrashing? w/o Geno? and you are about to reward Jake Muzzin with 5.5 for the next 4 years?? bwa ha ha ha ha ha … better off throwing that cash into Niagara Falls.. canadian side of course

    worst d-men in the league and I never realized that Freddie handles the puck like it was a hand grenade … there’s always next year

  6. Thinking abt the trade deadline. Would it be a good thing if say the NHL expanded the salary cap by 5% on Jan 1 every year to help with trades?

    • So GMs who can’t manage a salary cap correctly get a free pass to correct their mistakes? No thank you.

  7. Tyler johnson for Ghostisbehere? Money works – Bolts only have one good prospect on D and lose Shattenkirk; Coburn servicable but has aged into limited duty.

    • @ Richard Ilfeld

      With the cap strapped Bolts …maybe go after a better contract and former Cup winner in Hainsey ..just sayin…..

      more manageable and get a stay at home guy instead they dont need any more goals …just play.. D


      • @ Kal El
        age 28 v age 36
        Echoes of Jai ali
        Can skate with current cast
        No one ever has too many goals
        can replace Shattenkirk role

        but agree he would need to play more D if traded than he does now.

        As TJ has full no movement it’s a pipe dream anyhow.

      • @ Richard Ilfeld

        I was more suggesting to be able to walk away from a player at the end of the year who will roughly give you the same playing style on the D side ……and not have to give up anyone either…

        they just need stop gap for this run….

  8. The Blues have had previous interest in Kovi. Even though they have limited $s, bringing in his veteran presence makes sense. Armstrong has said it would need to be a “hockey trade”.

  9. I can’t believe it has taken this long for VGKs to get into the trade game…..

    They are sitting on buckets of prospects and have a total of 7 picks in the first two rounds (between this year and next).

    Per CF ; currentCap space is $3.5M; Martinez $4.0 M….. is the final touches of this deal just ironing out how much Blake retains and at what extra (on top of the two seconds)?

    • LEAFS

      Panthes make a deal ….

      Johnson out 6 months ….

      What a JOKE this is turning out to be !!

      Trade Marchment to Panthers for Malgin


      and get someone who wants to get his hair messy ….and isn’t counting down the days to go back to Europe …to soak in the Summer sun and spend his millions !!

      Fricken get some back bone and balls on this team not another small forward journey man !!!

      My gosh what are they doing in Toronto ??
      What are they doing???


    • @Kal I’ve been asking that question since they hired Dubas. I’m surprised Dumbass still has a job, he’s proved that he learned nothing from Lou in those 3 years. You want to get the players attention, fire Dubas and Keefe and bring back Babcock

    • The Kings will receive two 2nd round picks—one in 2020 and one in 2021 and are not retaining any salary on this transaction.

  10. Good morning, George: you dismissed Julien as a coach yesterday by saying he was fired twice previously. It was too late in the day to respond so I am doing so now.

    I counted 13 current head coaches who have been fired at least once. Several (Tortorella, Tippet, McClelland, Vigneault) have been fired several times. Quenneville and Torts join Julienne as coaches fired after winning a Cup. You could include Trotz who left Washington because they refused to pay him properly after winning the Cup.

    Whatever your standard is for rating coaches, it doesn’t seem shared by NHL teams.

    • My only point was, among his previous two firings, one was by the Habs already. Not too many coaches have gone back to the team that canned them. Maybe there’s still hope for Babcock?

      • Why not George that would get the players attention. You’d have fire Dubas too, not that it would my heart. He’s the worst gm in the NHL right now. You notice the 2 analytic whizz kids the future of the NHL aren’t doing so well. Both could be unemployed before summer

      • Bob, you could be bang on. I was never of a fan of the figure-filbert type of GM – maybe just my age bias. I just find it hard to accept that you can build a winning team by crunching a bunch of numbers through a computer. But that goes with the millennial approach to everything. Kinda like those disaster movies that flood TV – a massive asteroid is on a collision course with Earth or something evil is brewing at Stonehenge – and a group of teens are gonna save everything with a lap-top. Sheesh.

      • Those movies sound fun George! What are they called?

      • Oh you are a cheeky boy, George. I am surprised this site didn’t explode with that comment.

      • @Bob
        Bergevin is much worse then Dubas

  11. As another day passes it would seem Jeff Gorton and the front office have absolutely no clue what they plan on doing leading up to Monday. A depth move at the AHL level doesn’t move the needle for me. If they don’t resolve either of the Lundqvist, Krieder situations I would label this a complete and utter mismanagement of tradeable assets.

    Also don’t like the recent rumor of Tony D for Trocheck, don’t think that solves the Rangers issue down the middle at all.

  12. edvanlimpe, I had to send the kids to bed early last night watching the Leafs. My ten year old asked me why they look so slow and confused out there.

    Soft, slow delicate figure skaters, who skate aimlessly, avoiding the corners, avoiding the boards, arses perked up while fishing for pucks. This is becoming an embarrassment.

    Tavares leadership is like a frog in a boiling pot of water on a General Electric gas stove. Even Matthews is calling out his teammates for lack of compete. Tavares babbling on 2-3 minutes at a time about nothing, incapable of motivating evangelicals at a Christmas caroling competition.

    Lack of leadership, lack of toughness, lack of intensity, lack of work ethic. lack of focus, lack of defensive and positional awareness.

    Again, a complete embarrassment.

    Time to clean house.

    • @ FRANK

      LMAO ….

      My 13 year old asked my why I wasn’t a Bruins fan instead !

      He has seen all the collapses and then last night he said thats it Iam done …he sold enough to know see the JUNK and crap hockey this is

      I agree 100%


    • Frank, late yesterday you posted several things the Leafs should do – among themn\
      2. Trade anyone that doesn’t score consistently.
      3. Trade anyone who doesn’t finish a check.
      4. Trade anyone that can’t skate backwards.
      5. Acquire 1-2 shutdown defensemen that can actually skate. Manson, Martinez or Dumba come to mind.
      6. Acquire Reaves from VGK.

      Although I also responded there it was late so I’ll repeat it here: The problem with that is, the teams that have Manson, Martinez, Dumba and Reaves would have to be willing to accept players who don’t score consistently, doesn’t finish a check, can’t skate backwards. And I sincerely doubt any of those GMs are THAT dumb.

      I’m not suggesting you’re wrong – but it seems to me the increasing opinions in these pages that any trades of consequence will have to include a Tavares, Marner, Nylander (a couple have even suggested Matthews) are becoming the only avenue of hope. Those MIGHT bring back the type of player you list – plus decent picks – but only if the dance partner feel they can – and indeed want to – make room for those cap hits. As for those who can’t score consistently, finish a check or skate backwards, don’t expect a lot in return.

  13. Looking at Florida, Bobrovsky’s contract Is front loaded with a NMC for this year and the next four before it declines in salary and switches to a modified NTC/NMC. Although this seems to line up with a normal timeline to groom their next goalie, I wonder if the Panthers would consider moving Spencer Knight in a deal for D. Their window is now.

    • Agree. Too many from everyone wants to trade all our bad players for everyone’s good players. Was at the Leafs game with the Pens. You clearly need d and something better on the bottom six. The bottom six was completely dominated. Think you will have to trade one of your scorers to get that kind of return. You can score but you cannot defend in my opinion. Nobody goes to the net. When you did you scored but way too much perimeter is what I saw. How can any team lose track of Crosby down low. The D was just really bad.

  14. Malgin for Marchment

    Not much of a trade

    Leafs get an NHLer (albeit 4th line/depth and small) for a likely career AHLer

    About same Cap

    Cats free up $770 K on NHL roster

    • @ PENGY

      APPARENTLY …LOL ….Matthews played on the same line with Malgin ..in the Swiss Elite league !!

      LMFAO …the same place Nylander has all his success !!

      LOL ….argggggg 5 foot 9 160 pounds ..gonna do for this team!

    • That’s a tweedle-dum for a tweedle dee deal if ever I saw one! Maybe he just wants to be seen to doing SOMETHING.

      • @ GEORGE 0

        Iam really curious to see what the Sens Draft this year ..and how it will effect the Sens 3 years from now …will this Draft be the best thing ever to this franchise ??

        They saw this opportunity coming …and it is the exact reason they did not re sign Karlsson
        Your future is very bright with the core you have right now !

        I love Tkachuck


        How the HELL Does Dave Hakstoll have a job

        with the Leafs still ….as a D Coach ….its been a disaster all year regardless of any injuries ..JUST AWFUL systems !

      • Kal-el, it’s also why they didn’t re-sign Stone and Dzingel (they would have liked to have Duchene accept what they offered – but you can’t blame him for not wanting to go through the agonies of another re-build exercise – although his choice of Nashville isn’t looking much brighter).

        There are still many in Ottawa who decry the Karlsson, Stone and Dzingel decisions (and now DeMelo like he was the second coming of Bobby Orr), but the fact is, they finished dead last with those first three and were mired in 29th with DeMelo, No, he certainly wasn’t the reason they’re there, but looking ahead they need to make room for promising D prospects Bernard-Docker, Thomson, Wolanin, Jaros, Englund and maybe Brannstrom. Chabot is signed long-term, Zaitsev is here for a few more years and I think Borowiecki will be re-upped soon. Mike Reilly is decent enough to remain as a 7th D. For now.

        It’s a process and at some point they need to look ahead at who the coaches in their system feel will better serve the team over the long haul while never losing site of limitations dictated by the cap.

    • Penguins. How about a Reaves return to Pittsburgh? Would negate Wilson and does score better than some others on the forth line. Gives cap relief to Vegas. Vegas really needs cap relief right now and we have room with season ending guys.

      • would prefer Gudbranson if I’m looking for an equalizer to Tom Wilson.

  15. I wonder if Holland would do:

    To MTL: Jesse Puuljujarvi, Sam Gagner, Conditional 2nd, 2021

    To EDM: Ilya Kovalchuk, Paul Byron, 4th 2020

    The condition on the 2nd is if EDM makes it to the conference finals, they get a 2nd. If not it’s a 4th

    • Not bad!

    • Don’t know that the Oilers need another 3 years of 30 year old Byron at 3.4 Million per

  16. Great line from Pierre McGuire after Sid’s 4-0 goal last night:

    “Seriously, the Leafs defence is TERRIBLE!”

  17. unless the tules have change

    If Player X still have full contract years left…you can only retain what he is due this year which is less than 50% but that makes him free to new team this season

    If he is a UFA after the season then you can retain 50%

    • Huh?

  18. Wow, I feel bad for the Leafs and I am a Bruins fan.
    Sounds like a blow it all up and fire every coach and person in MGT!
    I will go out on a limb and suggest Dubas will be the GM to start the year and Keefe will be their coach.
    Their D core will look different and to make those changes, they need to move a forward(s). Will moving Kerfoot and or Kappy get it done? Maybe. I think they start there.
    Methinks the Leafs big 4 will wake up as the beating they are taking from media and fans sucks so much they commit to the details and the gym in the off season.
    All part of growing up.
    I also wouldn’t bet against them making the playoffs this year because if this doesn’t wake them up nothing will.
    I would start Campbell next, and if he wins ride him until he loses. Cinderella story!
    And stop pointing fingers at each other, even if your not naming names. This starts with you Keefe and Matthews. Circle the wagons and us against the world would make more sense. You sound like whiners. Look in the mirror, take care of your own sh** and pick up your mates.
    Man up boys.

    • Great post, Ray, thanks. Opportunity knocks on Thursday. Show us what you got, boys.

    • Why is everyone panicking about Leafs. They will be fine. If Andersen lays an egg again Thursday then Keefe will go with the win and your in mentality for the goalies. It is how u r playing at time of playoffs not in February.

    • Instead, they’re circling the wagons … and firing inwards.

      • Next thing you know they will be blaming their girlfriends.


    • Ray sound like you had a Maple Leaf fan dream.

      • Ha Ha! I actually do feel for the guys in the room. Coaching flashback.
        Went to B’s Oiler game tonight Caper. Tight game but a good one. Both teams played well. But our guys came through.
        Have to appreciate what the Oil are doing with all the injuries. Could have gone either way. Some quality young D on that squad.

  19. Full out panic in Leaf land. It seems like everyone is forgetting that Florida is the only team that can realistically catch them in the Atlantic. Florida is a flawed team and it will likely come down to the remaining head to head games.

    It is obvious Toronto needs to trade one of their big 4 forwards for defense help and I think the best one to trade value wise and cap wise will be Marner after his US$14.3M (!) signing bonus is paid on July 1. Marner’s cash on the contract would be ~$7M/year for the five remaining years after the signing bonus is paid, which is very good value.

    Nylander has a US$3.5M signing bonus paid on July 1 and actual cash left on his deal will be ~$5.1M/year for the four remaining years on his deal after July 1. That should also be of interest in trade. I think Marner is the better option simply because of the cap space Toronto would save in the deal. Marner’s cap hit is about $4M/year more than Nylander. Nylander, $4M/year in cap space and whatever they get in a Marner trade would probably be more valuable to Toronto than Marner, $4M/year less in cap space and the return for Nylander.

    • Too true Van. Florida is in Anaheim tonight for one of the 2 games they have in hand on the Leafs. If they can win that – no easy task by an stretch as Anaheim has been playing better lately – they will move past the Leafs in the WC race by virtue of having played one less game and with one more in the win column. Should the Leafs lose again at home to Pittsburgh tomorrow night, and Florida wins the 2nd of the back-to-back against L.A., the Leafs are in deep doo-doo – even before they go head to head. If the reverse happens on both nights, it’s the Panthers who will be in that same doo-doo.

    • Which team would want Mitch Marner ( career high season goals 26 !! ) overpaid contract ??

      • I was thinking the same thing.
        He’s priced himself out of being moved unless the Leafs hold and carry some of that 10+million dollar contract. Like a third of it.

      • Think it is overpay. He is talented but the leafs have enough talent to score. They need balance in the line up in my opinion. It is not all about hitting, the just sacrifice D too much. In the game against Pittsburgh, Crosby’s line negated Mathews line and the bottom lines of Pittsburgh kept the puck in the zone all night.

  20. Freidman’s speculations are arrived from playing xbox in his basement I cant understand how he s kept his job this long he should be thanking God every morning and every night

  21. Serious question though…what would it take for the PENS to trade for Hainsey and Pageau??? I feel like Hainsey could help them stabilize the bottom pairing as well as be a reliable 7th dman. I’m real concerned about their lack of depth on D and not knowing when and if Doumalin returns healthy or Marino returns and can get back to what they were before the playoffs begin. Pageau is way more talented with wayyyy more offense than Bjustad. it would slide Blueger, HQ, and Angello down to the checking line where they probably could be most efficient. PENS could roll 4 strong lines.

    Bjustad, 2021 1st and Legaré for UFA Hainsey and Pageau