Sunday NHL Rumor Roundup – February 9, 2020

by | Feb 9, 2020 | Rumors | 54 comments

Are the Canadiens shopping Tomas Tatar and Jeff Petry? Should the Islanders attempt to acquire Kyle Palmieri from the Devils? What’s the latest on the Leafs and Kings? Find out in this Sunday’s NHL rumor roundup.


TVA SPORTS: Renaud Lavoie dismissed recent trade speculation regarding Tomas Tatar and Jeff Petry. He claimed the Montreal Canadiens won’t move either player unless they get golden offers, which he doesn’t believe they will. Lavoie also doesn’t expect Habs general manager Marc Bergevin will be busy at the trade deadline, as he’s looking toward winning next season.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Tatar and Petry are also signed beyond this season, so Bergevin isn’t under pressure to trade them now. If the Habs keep clawing their way back into the playoff chase, the less likely Bergevin will be a seller by the Feb. 24 trade deadline.


NEW YORK POST: Larry Brooks wonders what it would cost the New York Islanders to acquire winger Kyle Palmieri from the New Jersey Devils. “Oliver Wahlstrom? Well, maybe the Devils would like to toss Blake Coleman into the mix, then. The Islanders could add Josh Ho-Sang.” He also wondered if Devils interim GM Tom Fitzgerald would move Palmieri or Coleman by the Feb. 24 trade deadline before contract extension talks starting July 1.

How much would it cost the New York Islanders to acquire Kyle Palmieri from the New Jersey Devils? (Photo via NHL Images).

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Like the Canadiens with Tatar and Petry, the Devils aren’t facing pressure to move Palmieri or Coleman before the trade deadline. Unless those two want out, management can wait and see how things unfold in contract discussions this summer. It would also be wise to determine if Fitzgerald stays on as GM or someone else takes over before deciding the fates of Palmieri and Coleman.


SPORTSNET: Elliotte Friedman reports there’s a lot of talk suggesting the Toronto Maple Leafs could go out and get another defenseman because injured blueliners Morgan Rielly and Cody Ceci could be sidelined for a long time. However, the Leafs intend to wait for the health reports on the two rearguards. They’ll know more within the next couple of weeks.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: If Rielly and Ceci are sidelined until the playoffs, the Leafs can place both on long-term injured reserve and use the savings to bolster their blueline. Because there’s no salary cap in the playoffs, the Leafs wouldn’t have to shed salary to make room for those injured d-men when they are ready to return.


SPORTSNET: Chris Johnston reports the Winnipeg Jets and Vegas Golden Knights are among the teams interested in Los Angeles Kings defenseman Alec Martinez. He also said the Pittsburgh Penguins and Calgary Flames have been linked to Kings winger Tyler Toffoli.


SPORTSNET: Chris Johnston reports contract talks are set to begin this week between the New York Rangers and Chris Kreider. It doesn’t sound as though there have been any contract discussions of late between the Ottawa Senators and Jean-Gabriel Pageau.


  1. Good morning

    I really dont understand why teams are
    ” waiting ” to make trades until closer to the deadline date..with how close things are right and and taking into account injuries and team needs.

    The teams that are OUT of it ……are OUT !
    Barring an Ottawa Senators ( Hammond ) style run …

    The teams that NEED players NEED players and need to make a deal …ASAP …waiting only allows for more doubt and less wins…

    While I understand that the SELLING teams waiting possibly raises the price the longer it goes …the teams that need to acquire players …such as an Alec Martinez ..Toffoli…Palmieri and so on …really need these players to make a difference!

    As the parody for the Wild card spots and the last few divisional playoff places are CRAZY tight !

    Most of these playoff spots or wild card spots will most likely come down to a single point or game won or maybe even a shoot out win at this point as it seems….with injuries and doubt with current rosters teams that strike first to upgrade would seem to have the upper hand …IMO !…NO???

    Iam not sure if any stat offers that input or not ?
    Purely suggestive and seems to reason?

    Obviously if the right deal is made… for the better upgrade …LOL …I get it ! ..LOL


    • It’s almost certainly because sellers are asking for the moon and stars right now. Buyers are actually waiting for prices to fall as the deadline forces teams hands. No one wants to be the first team because they often overpay compared to the deals that come after.

      • If Bergevin traded Tartar right now, even if it was for the first Pengy offered yesterday;) , it would be a good deal. But why would I bother to watch another game this season? And what would it say to Gallagher or the developing Suzuki? You keep trying until it’s mathematically impossible not just highly improbable.

      • @ shaun…

        You think Tatar is gong to grab a 1st ?
        Thats a pretty risky move by a team ..who would make that deal ?
        2nd at best ….IMO

      • Tatar has more points than Kreider or any of the ufa forwards on the market and has one year left? No doubt he gets a first! Jake Muzzin got a 1st and 2 solid prospects last year

      • The other side of that coin, Chrisms, is who will blink first among the buyers. At this stage the sellers dangling the likes of Kreider, Simmonds, Vatanen, Pageau, DeMelo, Toffoli, Forbort, Del Zotto, Fast, Kovalchuk, Scandella etc. know that the favorites among the buyers won’t want to see the opposition get a leg up them and if more than one team is after, say, a Kreider, Gorton can play both ends against the middle, saying to Team A – you’ve offered me this – Team B just offered me this – can you beat it?

      • @Kal El …. Pengy offered the first, hence the wink emoji. I doubt he gets moved.

      • And being that arnt any home run rental in that mix george it’s making for a interesting market.

        And Tatar is one of the few players potentially out there I wouldn’t hesitate to move a first for

      • Is there ever really a home run rental on the market? I’m not exactly sure what you mean by that? I think you’re saying very talented player? (Tavares, Stamkos, Mcdavid, Hedman, etc. ) That never really happens .

      • Hall already moved. That woulda been the home run type. What there seems to be really lacking this year is quality in any position that is not wing. At least as it stands right now.

      • But Tatar is on a nice $4.8 mil deal through next season. See no reason for Montreal to peddle him now unless, as you say, someone does come up with a # 1 pick. Even the, it would likely be more towards the bottom of the 1st round which doesn’t usually translate into immediate help.

    • Is it really any different this year than any other year? A couple of trades happen during the year and a bunch of trades happen on the deadline or leading up to it.

      This is nothing new. I don’t think it has as much to do with the cost as it does standings and health of rosters.

      So to answer why wait? I say why not? Why not evaluate everything before making any decisions?

  2. If the TML are more concerned keeping D on LTIR to be able to add more pieces…..than actually getting a playoff spot…………

    • Think about it this way…if the Leafs bring back Reilly and Ceci right away after getting healthy it’s going to be 5 or so games before they’re back in the flow of things. They’ll be rusty for sure.
      Now…if you keep them on LTIR and get somebody to replace them that’s already in late season form that’s a benefit two ways…the acquired players are ready to go now and you have excellent depth come playoff time if there are more injuries.

      • That only works if you keep them out until the playoff starts.

        TML with Reilly is a much better team. I don’t see any dman of his caliber available

        Holding out Reilly for the sake of adding a lesser player could mean missing the playoffs.

  3. The rental market is crazy. Only one team wins per year , hence at least 10 teams throw away their assets. Why don’t the GMs make actual hockey trades. UFA for UFA. Players with term for other players with term and picks. No rental is worth a 1st or 2nd round picks, it’s just madness.

    The GMs with restraint will be rewarded

    • Agreed, Bluesy, but from a different angle.

      So called pundits keep throwing out names to be trade for X round draft pick. Might make sense if a team is out of the playoffs and starting a rebuild.

      Otherwise, trading a good player with even just a year left is suspect. Take a look at any draft year and you will see that beyond the first 10 picks it is a crap shoot. So for example, Habs trading Petry for a first rounder forfeits a top 2 d who plays big minutes in exchange for picks and prospects who may be good, several years from now. Doesn’t make sense to me.

  4. A couple of days ago on one of the many panel shows, I think it was Friedman who said there was speculation that, to make the playoffs in the East – which took 98 last year for the last WC spot – it will take a record-breaking (since the divisional alignment) 100 points, while in the West, where 90 pts sufficed last year, it could be 96.

    Pretty much shoo-ins in the East – barring disasters – would be these 4 teams – showing pts % so far and pts % needed the rest of the way to reach 100

    Bost .714 – .385
    Wash .700 – .426
    T.B. .682 – .463
    Pitt .676 – .482

    Then there are these 7 teams still in the hunt for the last 4 spots

    NYI .642 – .552
    Clb .611 – .596
    Car .609 – .611
    Pha .609 – .611
    Fla .593 – .643
    Tor .589 – .654
    Mtl .535 – .780

    Clearly, Montreal is a long-shot as .780 seems way beyond their offensive capability. But, even those other than Islanders and Columbus would need to step up their % pace, with Carolina and Philadelphia pretty much needing to maintain the same pace.

    West in the next post.

    • You have to remember Florida,leafs and Montreal are vying for the 3rd spot in the Atlantic those other teams don’t mater to them. The leafs and panthers have offense but terrible defence

      • While that’s true Bigbear, do you see a scenario whereby the last spot in the Atlantic will come in at under 100? The figures above are what’s required to reach100 for each of the Leafs, Panthers and Habs so the prognosis remains. Clearly, it will be between Florida and Toronto as to who gains 3rd in the Atlantic.

      • The habs have climbed back into no man’s land. Still a long shot to make the playoffs, so no sense in becoming a buyer. Yet not too far out to sell. They will likely again be one of the top non-playoff teams. Decisions will then have to be made in the summer as to which direction to go. I’m not sure they have direction right now.

      • They have gained 6 points in 15 days and have 60 days left is all I’m saying, they’re healthy now look at the blues last year everyone said they would be going for the first overall pick

      • They weren’t saying that on February 9 last year BigBear, By that stage the Blues had climbed to within 2 pts of a WC spot en route to a franchise-record 12 – 1 – 1 for February

  5. Cecil’s trade value is at an all time high. He is only tradable as a salary dump and now at least half of his remaining salary is on LTIR. No need to wait for a diagnosis. Even if he returns between trade deadline and end of season he can still be traded to a non playoff team since it just disqualifies him for the playoffs.

    • It they’re to move ceci they will be throwing in a sweetener

      • And it won’t be Jeremy Bracco!

    • Wow you know how many post deadline trades there`s been in the NHL in the past 10 years maybe one. Post deadline deals are so rare that most people thought they couldn`t trade until the playoffs were over. The teams out of the playoffs usually just call up farm hands just to see what they can do. I think you have a better chance of winning the lottery than Ceci going anywhere after the deadline and if Toronto doesn`t have the cap space they just leave him on LTIR till the end of the season

  6. In the West, where things are really jammed up, if 96 pts does indeed become the cut-off, just 3 teams would appear to be likely

    St.L .652 – .442
    Col .642 – .483
    Dal .609 – .537

    There doesn’t appear to be any obvious obstacles to those teams playing at the levels needed the rest of the way

    Those who would need to see slight increases in pts % are

    Van .580 – .596
    Edm .582 – .593

    That’s 5 of the 8 spots. Then you have 7 teams jockeying for the last 3 slots all needing varying degrees of % increase to reach 96

    Veg .561 – .640
    Cgy .554 – .654
    Nash .546 – .661
    Wpg .545 – .670
    Minn .537 – .679
    Chic .537 – .679
    Ariz .535 – .700

  7. I know they have to add. But ana for example may take him for a 4th and a 7th (leafs have extra if each) they traded away since they wont have to pay much salary if he spends most of balance of season on ltir

  8. Leafs are a team with major structural issues…any moves made a the TDL should be consistent with resolving these issues IMO ….it not they should be done….short term thinking involving anything more than a 4 th round choice should not be undertaken…..IMO….

    The draft ( no 1 st round choice) and July 1 are coming up….teams will be reassessing their rosters ….there will be 30 disappointed teams ( including the Leafs) who will be looking to make corrections….that is the time to trade guys like Kaponen , AJ and Kerfoot….now is the time to trade Tyson Barrie ( if you can get any reasonable value)

    Leafs are not of the wilderness….they have a way to go

    • 100% agree with you OBD. Leafs are a seesaw with an elephant on one end and Flavour Flav on the other.

  9. Hi Kal El

    Re Tatar and potential for garnering a first in trade (if he in fact is moved)

    Media keeps saying that Kreider will get a first plus a prospect and/or pick ….I don’t challenge that at all…. just look at the package Jets paid last spring

    Kreider (5th in points on Rangers) on track for 31-28-59

    TT -1st on Habs) on track for 30-45-75

    Both are Lefties on track for career years

    Both 29

    Both LW; but both can play RW

    Cap hit very close …. only 175 K diff

    Both will be needle movers on respective receiving team’s expected playoff longevity

    Adv Kreider
    —size …. big difference over TT

    Adv TT
    —subjectively I think he has slightly better hands
    —more over-all points…. more of a playmaker
    —slightly faster than the already quick Kreider
    —- one more year under contract vs UFA (Kreider)

    With the above …. if Kreider is getting a first PLUS (something I believe to be true; IF he is moved) ; then TT whose production is slightly more than Kreider’s but more importantly has term; will also fetch a first plus (if moved)

    Yesterday I posted (again) my great desire for TT to be a Pen;

    from yesterday:

    “I’m thinking 1st + G-Chuck (to balanceCap) + Lagere (Montreal Lad; doing very well on a veryvery weak Baie Comeau team) just may do it

    Rattus Rattus replied stating Montreal wouldn’t take Legare because Rattus believed that Legare was small

    However Legare is big; already at 18 weighing more than the average NHLer

    Forwards in last years draft (at the draft as 17 and 18 year olds and not fully developed) were averaging 175-185 lbs ; at the draft Legare was 205 and he is 6’ 1/2”. When he was drafted they referred to him as “big” and estimated that his eventual NHL playing weight will be in the 215 range…. note still well shy of the expected NHL playing weight of Poulin (who is 6’2”) at around 225-230 (he is now already 217)

    Legare is top 20 in QMJHL; leads his team (very weak team) and is more than a PPG ; and almost has twice as many goals as the next best player on his team

    I’m not convinced Bergevin moves TT; but if he does; 1st and Legare (and G-Chuck to balance Cap) to me, is fair.

    More importantly ; it tremendously improves Pens with only losing the very under-achieving G-Chuck

    If Bergevin feels that taking G-Chuck (even at 50% retained) is a negative to Habs ; then remove G-Chuck from trade offer (pens have Guentz’s space) ; then Pens lose nothing off roster


  10. OldBlueDog, it seems some may have put on blinders to mathematical reality. Last season, in finishing 3rd in the division, the Leafs reached 100 points playing at a .610 pace over the 82 games.

    The question the die-hards need to ask themselves now is, is this edition with their goaltending issues and injury-riddled D and needing to play 3 rookies there, capable of suddenly upping that % to .654 from here to the end?

    If they do that, both issues will have been solved IMO.

    • What is there winning percentage since Keef took over. That’s what I suspect they will play for the remainder of the season

      • Well, Roger, if they do that they’ll be ok. When Babcock was sacked they were 9 10 4 22pts for a .478 pace. Since Keefe took over they’ve gone 20 9 4 44 pts for a .667 pace.

        Should they maintain that the rest of the way they’d wind up with 101 pts.

        But at the same time, when Keefe took over he had a healthy Rielly and Ceci. Has their D improved with their omission and replacements by a couple of rookies?

        As I say to Old Blue Dog, if they do make it that issue – and their goaltending worries – will have been answered

      • Something else to consider – with Rielly nursing another injury and not at 100% starting around Jan 4, and when he went down with that break a few days later, they’ve gone 5 6 2 12 pts for a pts % of .462, scoring 45 goals while giving up 52.

      • There goaltending will be fine. There defense and giving up 3rd period leads are there main issue. You like Reilly way more than I do which I find odd because you keep referring to Barrie being a -50 over his career yet Reilly is a -40. They’re essentially the same defensemen as soon as Keefe put Barrie on the first power play unit and took off Reilly his points went way up and Reilly’s went way down. They are in a bit of a slump. Had a couple this year with Reilly in the lineup as well but I think the winning percentage under Keefe is what we should expect. Means will be fine.

      • Well, I must say I admire your optimism

      • We’ll compare notes at the end of the month – between now and then their schedule sees them playing

        H – Arizona Feb 11
        H – Dallas Feb 13
        A – Ottawa Feb 15
        A – Buffalo Feb 16
        A – Pittsburgh – Feb 18
        H – Pittsburgh – Feb 20
        H – Carolina – Feb 22
        Trade Deadline Day – Feb 24
        A – Tampa – Feb 25
        A – Florida – Feb 27
        H – Vancouver – Feb 29

        Things will be a lot clearer when that dust settles.

  11. Re Leafs and any trades made

    I am not advocating for any more trades

    If they do ; it must be to get a player with term …. like they did to get a back-up upgrade for 2 extra years of term

    This is NOT Leafs year for a cup.The window starts next year.

    The most Leafs can realistically expect to gain this year (IF they make the playoffs ) is 3 home gates:

    Their first round match-up (again IF they make it) is almost certainly (got to be well North of 95%) to be one of

    Caps (if Leafs are in WC)
    Pens (if Leafs are in WC)

    No matter what trade Leafs make …. I just can’t see them at all getting by Bruins or Bolts or Caps.

    If the injuries continue for Pens and they falter …. then Leafs have a slight shot at beating Pens…. but extra / continued injuries to Pens and them faltering …. therefore would have Pens failing to finish first in Metro ….And therefore impossible to meet Leafs in the first round

    So …. no futures are worth giving up to at best get 3 home playoff gates

    Serious and big moves come summer are required of Leafs

    • Again they took Boston to 7 games. Had a chance to beat them in 6. This is a young team that will go through growing pains like every other young contender. Hopefully it’s all a learning experience. They are just as capable of beating the teams you listed as any other team that makes the playoffs. This whole window to win garbage you keep coming up with is ridiculous. If you make the playoffs your window is now. Please stop with the chuck and Jk trades it’s getting old.

  12. Just spit ballin’ here….any thoughts what the OIL would have to give up to squeeze Coleman out of NJ ????

    • Don’t see any reason why NJ would deal Coleman. The guy has 21g 10a 31 pts in 54gp and is on a cap-friendly $1.8 mil to the end of next season.

      NJ has $26.3 mil in cap space to sign 11, with RFAs Blackwood, White, Mueller, Bratt, Hayden and Anderson to sign.

      37 y/o UFA Greene is likely done, and at the trade deadline they’ll probably deal UFAs Simmonds and Vatanen to bring in prospects and/or picks.

      They’re poised to perhaps win the lottery (currently sitting 4th out of 31) and, regardless, will probably be getting someone in the Top 5 to go along with system top prospects Jesper Boqvist and Michael McLeod – both F – and top junior prospect D Ty Smith.

      Holland would have to overwhelm them with an offer if he wanted to pry Coleman away.

  13. Tough to make up ground in the NHL. Agreed 100% the smart gm should pull a trigger early. That could be between two playoff teams ? A hockey trade.

    Bogosian will land somewhere even though he has not been playing much. Which is a good thing because he is a risk to get injured.Hold some salary and dump him now. Scandella another candidate.

    • Leafs were way better defensively last night with Lilligren in for ceci. They may not need another RHD but if they can get a top 4 defensive dman I believe they will go go into playoffs on a roll and have as good of a chance as any team. It is a huge break for leafs having ceci out.

      • If they make the playoffs! They were outshot 16-1 in the 3rd period and they blew 2 third period leads against a very weak ducks team

      • You mean like Boston lost to the weakest team in the NHL today 3-1. It happens that`s why they actually play the games

      • Bob, that is one of those weird scenarios where one team – regardless of how bad the season they’re having – seem to get up higher than a kite for one specific team. In Major Junior, the 67s are running away with things in the OHL, having lost just 8 games so far (out of 49 played) – but something like 4 or 5 of those losses have come against the Peterborough Petes, who sit 3rd in the Conference some 17 points behind the 67s and having played 4 more games.

        Used to call that being “snake bit.”

  14. GO BOLTS!!

  15. George I agree with you and enjoyed reading the percentages you provided.

    As I read here one of the things I think is underappreciated, is the concept of any team’s window of opportunity.

    Pengy often writes that the earliest Leaf window opening is next year.. But I am not even confident of that when I see some of the immature and unprofessional habits of some Leaf players this year. Can they change these over the course of one summer. I have 25 year old grandsons, and I am not sure deep introspection and constructive change are part of the package.

    The weakest part of the Leaf window maybe the shortness of Matthew’s contract. It may take more than 4 years from this Spring to address the structural issues.

    You mentioned the rookies on defense. That is a reason for confidence in my eyes. If they can contribute, if Muzzin is re-signed and a good D man is got through trade or free agency then maybe the window is open.

    My guess is with good luck and extremely good player management, the window is at least 2 years away. At that time what are Anderson and Rielly’s contract status.

    And 31 other teams will be doing their own window analysis. Not easy stuff by any standards.

  16. Bruins – $318 today at Det……could it be a trap ..B’s played yesterday Det off day

    • We’ve lost 5 in a row against the Wings.

  17. If the Leafs do trade for another D there aren’t many good targets on the high end.
    Manson ANA – The only way that I see the ducks giving him up is for Nylander.

    Dumba MIN – Again, a longshot unless the Wild really have problems with him or his contract. Who knows?

    Dillon SJ – Likely the most affordable, though a UFA and not much scoring upside.

    Vantannen NJ – Solid, but not sure he’d be a great fit.

    Montor BUF – Sabres trading with Leafs? A sign of the apocalypse?

    More Likely names from the bargain bin:

    Ron Hainsey OTT – Familiar with the gang and maybe happier with the new coach, a steadying influence but can’t really do the big minutes without a downside.

    Demelo OTT- Interesting when I head Elliot Friedman mention his name, but isn’t he pretty much Ceci-light?

    Ben Hutton LA – Maybe as a cheap option they’d bite on him.

    Ben Harpur TOR – That’s right, from the Marlies. He wasn’t good enough in camp to stick, but Dubas saw something in his game that he liked. This may be the time to see if he has raised his game in the AHL?

    Mark Borowiecki – As a rental, he could be just the sort of player who would be a great influence going into the play-offs. He almost certainly wants to sign back with Ottawa though, and the Sens are very familiar with the Leaf’s farm team, some sort of rental deal could work well for both sides.

  18. Tatar and Petry aren’t going anywhere unless its a 1st and 2nd round pick and the top prospect. The “key” word being a golden deal Bergevin cant pass up. It is a pipe dream too get rid of those 2 guys. Julien has not lost the room and they are part of the team chemistry. Where else are you going to get next year to replace those guys the market would revolt if they miss the playoffs this year and out of the gate they slump because they lost those 2 key pieces