NHL Rumor Mill – September 14, 2020

by | Sep 14, 2020 | Rumors | 68 comments

The latest on the Oilers, Kings, and Capitals in today’s NHL rumor mill


THE ATHLETIC (subscription required): Allan Mitchell recently examined several potential trade targets for the Oilers. He suggested Arizona Coyotes goaltender Darcy Kuemper would be an attractive option given his salary-cap hit ($4.5 million) for the next two years and solid save percentages (.920 or higher) over the last three years.

EDMONTON JOURNAL: Kurt Leavins expects the Oilers focus will be on their goaltending rather than on defense or a third-line center. He notes speculation suggests Darcy Kuemper could be available but feels he’ll go to a goalie-poor club with draft picks to spend like the Calgary Flames. He also considers Vegas’ Marc-Andre Fleury’s contract is too expensive.

Leavins argues for upgrading Mikko Koskinen’s goalie partner rather than seeking a true starter. He points out Koskinen’s save percentage (.917) is similar to Toronto’s Frederik Andersen and comparable to Vancouver’s Jacob Markstrom (.919) and Vegas’ Robin Lehner (.921). Re-signing Mike Smith to a one-year, $1-million deal would make sense if Smith accepts playing 20-25 games per year.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Cap Friendly reports the Oilers have $70.9 million invested in 16 players for 2020-21. They seemingly lack the cap room to bring in an established starter, but recent rumors indicate they had talks with the Penguins about Matt Murray but balked at parting with a first-round pick. Maybe Oilers general manager Ken Holland attempts a dollar-for-dollar deal to add a goalie or dumps salary in a separate trade.

Kuemper would be a solid addition if Holland seeks a reliable starter, but I agree with Leavins that he could end up with a club that has the tradeable assets to tempt the Coyotes if they’re looking to rebuild. That would be draft picks, prospects or young NHL-ready players.

If Holland’s going to upgrade Koskinen’s partner he should pass on Smith. There should be better options available in what’s expected to be a flooded goalie market. Dallas’ Anton Khudobin is due to become a UFA but his playoff heroics will price him out of the Oilers’ range. The New York Islanders’ Thomas Greiss (.913) could be an option.

Leavins colleague David Staples looks into whether it would be worthwhile for the Oilers to pursue Arizona Coyotes defenseman Oliver Ekman-Larsson. While he considers the Coyotes captain a very good defenseman, his stats indicate he’s not an elite one. He doubts the Oilers can afford Ekman-Larsson’s $8.25-million annual average value plus he could be unwilling to waive his no-trade clause to come to Edmonton.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: There’s no indication Holland is interested in Ekman-Larsson. I daresay those points raised by Staples ensures the blueliner won’t be coming to Edmonton anytime soon.

THE ATHLETIC (subscription required): Allan Mitchell also suggested Boston Bruins winger Jake DeBrusk would be an attractive trade option for the Connor McDavid line. DeBrusk is a restricted free agent and could cost around $5 million annually to sign. The Bruins asking price could be prospects and draft picks, though Mitchell suggests the Oilers’ first-round pick might come into play.

Mitchell’s colleague Jonathan Willis believes the Oilers won’t get fair value in any trade involving Jesse Puljujarvi. While some observers suggest swapping the winger for another underachieving young player, Willis believes that could be simply exchanging one problem for another. He suggests they follow the Tampa Bay Lightning’s example with Jonathan Drouin and hope Puljujarvi can build up his value if he returns to the Oilers next season.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: If the Bruins don’t re-sign Torey Krug they’ll have the cap room to re-sign DeBrusk, though that could go off the rails if the winger seeks more than they’re willing to pay. I think they intend to re-sign DeBrusk and remain patient with him. He’s only 23 and was on pace to exceed 20 goals for the second straight year and 40 points for the third straight year before COVID-19 prematurely ended the regular season.

I agree with Willis’ take on Puljujarvi. Shipping him out for another struggling youngster doesn’t guarantee improvement. Best to bring him back and give him an opportunity to build up his game.


THE ATHLETIC (subscription required): Lisa Dillman doesn’t expect the Los Angeles Kings to pursue any big-name talent via free agency. If they do look toward the UFA market it could be for affordable options. Oilers winger Tyler Ennis, Nashville Predators winger Craig Smith, and Washington Capitals defenseman Brenden Dillon were among Dillman’s suggested targets.

Dillman also pointed out the Kings carry over $19 million in salary-cap space, putting them in a good position to acquire a player from a cap-strapped club who can provide immediate help if they’re willing to part with draft picks and prospects. Arizona Coyotes captain Oliver Ekman-Larsson and fellow Coyotes blueliner Niklas Hjalmarsson could be available. The St. Louis Blues could look to move winger Jaden Schwartz to clear cap room to re-sign Alex Pietrangelo.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Before COVID-19 flattened the salary cap it was expected Kings GM Rob Blake would wait until next summer before getting into the UFA market as the 2021 pool of free-agent talent is deeper than this year’s. We don’t know if the current economic landscape has changed his mind.

Dillman isn’t saying Blake will pursue a big-name player via trades or free agency. She’s simply looking at possible moves if the Kings GM were inclined to get involved. Blake could make a move or two but I’ll be surprised if he makes a big splash in this year’s trade or free-agent markets. He could stick with his plan of rebuilding with youth but I see him adding a reasonable price veteran or two.


NBC SPORTS WASHINGTON: J.J. Regan wonders if the Washington Capitals need to trade a defenseman. If they re-sign Brenden Dillon they’ll be overloaded with left-shot blueliners as they’ll also have Dmitry Orlov, Michal Kempny and Jonas Siegenthaler, as well as prospects Martin Fehervary and Alex Alexeyev. He speculates that could leave one of them expendable.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: A lot will depend upon whether Dillon re-signs. Even then, there’s no rush to ship out one of those blueliners. If they do I suspect it would be Kempny or Siegenthaler.


  1. Lyle, re your comment: “Dallas’ Anton Khudobin is due to become a UFA but his playoff heroics will price him out of the Oilers’ range” … as I mentioned yesterday, while his performance so far in the playoffs is probably shooting him up the list of the glut of UFA goalies available, how much term and cap could a team – any team – invest in a goalie just turned 34 coming off a $2.5 mil cap hit? Indeed, how much of either could he and his agent realistically expect in those circumstances – combined with the numbers of goalies available?

    • Never underestimate the ability of general managers to overpay. Even in the current economic climate, a club with sufficient cap room looking for help in goal could be prepared to do so, especially if Khudobin carries the Stars to the Cup.

    • What do you guys think about the Leafs moving Anderson and signing Thomas Griess to be the 1 B to Campbell’s 1A.

      If it is true that the Leafs believe that Campbell is good enough to carry the load for 40 games, then I see Griess as the perfect partner.

      As an Isles fan, I see the writing on the wall and there is no room for Griess with Sorokin signed.

      Judas knows Griess from his days with the Isles and would probably recommend him.

      I hate the Leafs and want to see them fail, but this seems like a “No Brainer” to me.


      • Lol @ Judas!
        Too much!

    • It’s nice to have George hear it from a person he will not take pot shots of personal attacks. So thanks Lyle for stating That. Now maybe he may rethink my opinion on GM spending. I don’t expect agreement but it’ll be nice to leave a post here with out an insult coming back as a response.

      The entire history of the league. Pre cap, post cap, lock out etc shows GM’s willingness to spend. Now I am sure bottom tier players will scrap for the left overs. But players will be paid teams still need to put bid each other.

      • I reread my post. Perhaps *make pot shots is a better way to say it.

  2. From what I’m reading about the Bruins they want to get bigger on the wings and on the D ….names mentioned going in trades, DeBrusk, Krejic & even he’s a big Dman Carlo .. and letting Krug walk if all of that happens it’s a big change in the team not counting what might happen to Rask, play.trade or retire

  3. Kings are interesting team. They have 2 star players who still have term left on big contracts. They’ve built one of the better pipelines and could get an NHL ready player with 2nd pick in draft. It’s easy to say they’re “not ready to win yet”. But, looking ahead to next off season, there’s no big names who are still in prime hitting free agency. (Dougie Hamilton and RNH would be 2) And there’s no guarantee that the better ones don’t sign extensions before then. Rangers where kind of in same position last year when they signed Panarin. Reasoning being that players like him don’t become available all the time. L A has Doughty, so I don’t see them having interest in Pietrangelo. What about Krug? Hall? Dadinov or Hoffman?

    • Taylor Hall, who turns 29 in Nov, has averaged 21g 56pts over the past 6 seasons and is a UFA coming off a $6 mil cap hit who some think will be commanding in the area of $8 mil per.

      Mike Hoffman, who turns 31 in November, has averaged 28g 59pts over the same span and is a UFA coming off a $5,187,500 cap hit per.

      Hall’s average was bumped up thanks to one 39g 93 pt season – subtracting those totals his average is 17g 49pts. If you take away Hoffman’s best season of 36g 70pts his average is 27g 56pts.

      If, as some suggest, Hall will command (and get) around $8 mil per based on that history, you have to wonder what Hoffman is going to be seeking. I just don’t see Blake investing $8 mil plus in a 30 y/o F.

      Canadian King, if you’re reading this, what are your thoughts?

      • Hey Slick, George. The age of those players listed by Slick just doesn’t mesh with LAs rebuild timelines.

        If Blake dips into Free Agency this year, it will be for a stop gap left-handed defenseman on a shorter term contract, maybe something around 2-3 years. I hope he stays far, far away from Krug.

        Other than that I don’t see him throwing big bucks out to players in their 30’s or close to it, who will eventually be on the down turn of their careers when LA is getting back into contender status. That’s just a waste of money and roster spot at this point in the rebuild.

        What I can see Blake doing, is targetting a cap strapped team like Tampa Bay to see if he can get his hands on a Sergachev or Cirelli, with some of their plethora of prospects/picks they have.

      • That’s exactly what I’ve been thinking these past weeks, Canadian King, when it comes to teams with ample cap space like L.A., Ottawa, Detroit.

        They have NO need to panic-buy but there are lots of teams who need to panic-sell as the clock ticks down and they can’t even sign their key RFAs. The latter WILL start to blink first.

      • Can-King and George. My thoughts were based on the notion that Blake will wait till next year to add a top ufa., while taking into account players they have. Understand points being made, I just don’t get narrative always of not being in timeline of rebuild. I don’t believe GM’s go into season accepting that they’ll be losers and hope prospects pan out. Still have to fill out roster. If that’s their thinking, the they should be asking Kopitar for his trade list and talking to Doughty About waiving his nmc.

      • No teams need to panic sell George. Not to the point they will have to pay teams to take good players. They simply don’t have to sign their rfas. Panic sell way overstates the situation

      • Well, it may not be overstating if some of those RFAs teams walk away from sign elsewhere as UFAs … and thrive. We’ll soon see who’s been right.

      • I see what your saying Slick, but in LAs case they have a bunch of good prospects that they need to see in action to see if they have what it takes to become NHLers. There’s only one way to do that, and that’s by giving them meaningful minutes in the NHL.

        I believe that’s Blake’s intentions for this year and maybe next, is to see what he’s got in the pipeline. If guys don’t pan out as expected, then backfill with free agency or other trades.

      • George O..That was a interesting list of playoff series won since the start of the millennium..Good stuff and yes surprising…Go Ottawa

        I pose this question to you as if you were the GM of either team would you make this deal.

        – Def Jeff Petry 32, $5.5 million 11 goals 29 assists 40 points
        – C/W Max Domi 25, $3 .1 million 17 goals 40 plus points

        – Def- Kris Letang 33, $7.25 million 16 goals 44 points

        – C/W Jared Mccann 24, $1.25 million 21 goals 35 points

        Money is almost identical, ages are almost identical, statistics are almost identical. Both teams fill a big need and gain a solid replacement.

        Do you like the deal, would you make the deal, who adds, who subtracts..Thoughts GEORGE o AND PENGY TOO

      • I’m not saying some teams arnt in bad situations George. Just that panic sell isn’t an apt description. I’ve seen people say teams will have to pay teams to take good players. Not ok but overpriced players but good players. I doubt that happens.

      • BlacknGold – at first blush, how does the deal fill a need for both teams if the positions are identical? It’s like tweedle-dum for tweedle-dee – except I think Petry is a much better defensive D than Letang.

        Then there’s the question of the M-NTC, NMC of both Petry and Letang.

      • Chrisms, I only use the word panic for one reason. There are 21 teams who absolutely MUST clear cap space for the reasons oft stated. At the same time there are only 5 teams with what can be described as ample cap space – and that ranges among the 5 from “lots” to “modest.” And every one of them have various numbers of their own RFAs and even a UFA here and there they’d like to keep. So when those are settled, the cap space will have been whittled down in each case to the point where the numbers of players they are able to take on to relieve the 21 cap-strapped are well below the numbers of players that would need to be moved.

        In short, more supply than demand. As and when these deals go down and the demand starts to shrink, that’s where some of the cap-strapped could start to get “edgy” – “fidgety” – “worried” – “concerned” – “apprehensive” – or “panicky” – take your pick. They can’t all walk away from RFAs, some of whom are damned good.

        And for the 21 to deal with each other is a non-starter in terms of clearing space because there’s little point in one team taking on $5 mill or so when they, themselves, have to find takers for the same or near amount.

      • I’ve said it many times…whichever GM signs Taylor Hall to a contract in the $8-9M range will immediately regret it.
        He’s a complimentary piece at best. Everybody takes lot shots at Phil Kessel for making $8M a year and he’s had 6-30G seasons. Kessel should have won the Conn Smythe over Crosby but there was no way the media were voting for him.

        I’d take Hoffman at $6M/yr over Hall

    • George, will also add as far as Hall… he’s a bit of a risk. Don’t know if anyone can predict if he’s either injury prone or really unlucky. You can average out his point totals per season and take out best season, but his actual points per game is still pretty impressive. It’s a high reward risk if anyone’s willing to take it. Will Blake? Idk.

  4. I have something for Roger Laurin, as I was too late last night reading his latest response in our exchange regarding how the Habs stack up against other teams next year.

    Yes, Boston may be in decline. Don’t take my word for it: “It just kind of hit me after the game that the core group, a few of us, we have one or two, three years left,” Krejci told reporters after the playoff loss to the Lightening (Boston Herald).” Patrice Bergeron on the possibility that the B’S window is closing fast: “It’s definitely something that crossed my mind. You never want this to happen and obviously, well see what happens going forward.”

    The B’s relied too heavily on one one line this year and have decisions to make on several core players. Will Tuuka be back? Lots of questions around the Bs right now.

    You say Toronto is where Tampa was a few years ago. Correct, if you are talking about 2017 when the Bolts missed the playoffs. The Leafs haven’t won a playoff series in three years. 4 high end forwards, but paper thin on D and questions in goal. I have no idea what you mean when you said: “They’re just the leafs so they’re not allowed any room to grow.” Continuing to lose in the first round isn’t my idea of growth.

    Another team that you have the pom poms out for, Washington, has lost in the first round of the playoffs the last two seasons. I call that in decline. Ovi is 35 in a few days – how long can he keep scoring at an elite pace? – and there are questions about Holtby.

    Sure, every team makes off season changes. My push back is that your dislike for the Habs renders your assessments simplistic.

    There is no question you are correct about one thing: This season is not next season and we’ll have to see how things pan out. You say the Habs won’t make the playoffs. They aren’t close to contenders but I say they will. Let’s remember this at the end of next season and one of us can come back, stick our thumbs in our suspenders, and strut around this site.

    In closing Roger, I haven’t seen you comment on Price’s playoff performance, after numerous pre-playoff posts in which you denounced his play. He had a .936 save percentage and a 1,78 goals against average. Anything to say about that?

    • LJ, slight correction “The Leafs haven’t won a playoff series in twenty years.”

      • Well, at least they can pay thier players….er overpay thier players!

      • Actually, that got me to wondering how the Canadian-based teams stacked up against each other in terms of playoff series won since the turn of the millennium – and the results were a bit surprising

        Ottawa – 10
        Montreal – 8
        Vancouver – 7
        Toronto – 5
        Edmonton – 4
        Calgary – 4
        Atlanta/Winnipeg – 2

      • George: zinger! Actually they won a first round series against your Senators in 2004. So it has only been 15 years. LOL!

      • Yeah, that’s t rue – helluva accolade on which to hang your hat though – beating Ottawa.

      • Hey George, don’t sell your Sens short. A lot of good teams have beaten the Sens on their way to actually winning the Stanley Cup.

      • George O…Pittsburgh fills the need of a young third line center…which we haven’t had since Bonino.. he will thrive here and get t play center not wing.. the Lemieux Family and Domi family are tigth and for some reason Montreal has soured on him at center.

        Jared Mccann is super fast, fits Montreal’s speed game and is more of a winger…he hasn’t worked out at center here and Montreal is stacked at center… so they get a speedy winger….he had 21 goals

        Montreal gets a d-man ice time eater, a better offensive defenseman than Petry.. (agree Petry id better defensively)

        Letang is capable of locking it down ala Cups 16 and 17 and i think being a French Canadian Montreal will be good for him and the one place he would waive his limited movement clause.

        Petry slides with Dumoulin…

        i honestly think Letang will flourish in Montreal both he and Mccan fit that up tempo style…

        I think Domi will flourish in Pittsburgh

      • Well, perhaps. But I think Letang is also well aware of how fast the fans there can turn on you – French Canadian or not. I well remember how they got on J. C. Tremblay for his penchant of turning over the puck which, although it happened often enough to draw their ire, it wasn’t nearly as often as we’ve seen from Letang.

        Putting his family through that sort of minute attention I don’t imagine would be high on his bucket list.

    • Ha! I know that was for Roger, but somehow it made me very sad.

      • Come on, George, you remember when Toronto/Ottawa was a tremendous rivalry. Those were some of the best series I can remember.

    • The Habs certainly cannot yet be considered as Cup contenders. But if they can sign Edmundson, which I think they will, and add a winger who can score 25-30 goals, they can certainly make the playoffs. Hopefully, Bergevin will make those moves and there will be something to build on.

      • Dreaming is free, Howard, and we can indulge ourselves in such happy, if modest, dreams.

      • So far I haven’t seen anything that suggests Bergevin got a “feeling” from the Edmundson camp that he’d be will to sign there so, all they have right now is the right to negotiate.

        It could be that Edmundson and his agent feel there’s nothing to lose by testing the UFA waters (as Borowiecki has done in Ottawa) and, in that event, I can see Dorion giving them a call. Among others.

    • LJ, I ain’t Roger, but will comment. SOP, yes it is depressing.
      Bruins are in decline.
      Their top 2 C’s are 34 and 35. Their Captain will retire this season or next, and I am not sure which one I prefer.
      If Krug walks, (I think they should let him) and Chara retires (probably should), that leaves Grezlyk and Moore as your only 2 NHL LD’s. Far from awe inspiring.

      Their prospect pool is thin as they continued to go for it, as they should have. Yes they blew it in 2015, what matters is what you do going forward. My guess is they give it another go this year and then accept reality, but I wouldn’t dismiss that they cut salary this year either.
      If you look at the Jacobs family business, it is made up almost entirely of market segments hit hardest by Covid. Things can’t be good financially.

      MTL has an excellent prospect pool and quality young players. The problem MTL has is it’s 2 best players are Price and Weber, 33 & 35. Will the youngsters develop fast enough while these 2 guys are still at a high level? They best hope so because their contracts don’t expire until they are well past the normal age for being highly productive. My guess is MTL catches the B’s after next season, maybe even next season. But when Weber and Price really start to decline, then you have a problem.

      At least the B’s contracts expire when they should and they can begin the inevitable rebuild, and yes they then will suck for 4-5 years. Just the way it works.

      • Well, Ray, take solace in the Bruins being resilient. They have overcome trading Thornton, Kessel, and Seguin and have managed to draft and trade well enough to win the cup once and get to the finals twice. Not too shabby.

      • I find it interesting to read that MTL has a deep prospect pool but all I keep hearing is that they need to trade for help or sign a couple UFAs.
        If they’re so deep in Laval why aren’t these guys being promoted to the big club?
        Do they have a winger in Laval capable of putting up 25-30 G at the NHL level?
        Are they that deep at C? Are Suzuki and Kotkienemi the real deal? Might want to find out before trading a guy that has scored 25+ G at the NHL level…?

        Everybody bashed the Leafs for not winning a series against veteran Boston and Washington teams…the Leafs were a very young team that took Boston to game 7 and Washington to six games with 4 or 5 of them decided in OT. Both of those teams went on to win the Cup.

      • Daryl ,

        Toronto lost to Washington in 16-17. Washington did not win the cup that year. Boston hasn’t won a cup since 2011… and Toronto did not qualify that year….?????

    • LJ the point O was making is that both Boston and Washington were top teams this year using the regular season as that is a way bigger sample of games. To say that to top teams this year are in decline is a bit premature. If they decline at a reasonable rate they both would still be playoff teams for 2 or 3 more years. You’re also assuming they do nothing to improve there teams in that time. Price did great in the play in round it’s not a shocker as a lot of people predicted it could happen. Not only that bit Montreal usually come out of the gate on fire just look at how they started this season and last season. You think I’m taking a slight at Montreal but I’m not. Take your fan boy glasses off and look at them objectively. What all of a sudden turned Korkiemi into a top 2 center without saying well according to how I saw him play. He had 4 points in ten game. Puts him on pace for a 30 to 35 point season over 82 games. Maybe for you that’s what a top 2 center is but for me it’s a 50-60 point guy. The third line center is where you put the 35 point guy. I’m a huge fan of Suzuki and maybe he becomes a number 1 center but at this point he’s been a second line guy. Even though Cary Price is perfectly capable of playing great for 10 games he has been a bottom end goalie over an 82 game season. Sorry but it’s the truth I’m not basing that on opinion I happen to like Price. He’s a true competitor. So honestly without the fan boy analysis tell me why you think Montreal will be a contender. They have a heavy prospect pool but no real grade a prospects. I might just be missing something so tell me with real analysis who Montreal has under 25 that will cary this team to contender status. They are not any better than they were this season yet they get a small run where they only played 10 games and now there center problems are fixed and there contenders. Bergie could shock us all and pick up those players I mean how good would Montreal look if they would have got Aho. Who by the way would immediately be there best player under 25. Like I said Montreal has a quantity of prospects that could make the NHL but teams like NJ, NYR, Carolina, Toronto ect…. have those prospects already make an impact in the NHL. There’s nothing I would love to see more than Ottawa, Montreal and Toronto fight for the cup every year just don’t know how Montreal gets there without any young star players.

      • Roger, that is a more reasoned response. Thank you.

        I have repeatedly said that the Habs need to upgrade on D and forward. Next season they have at least two young D who will be dependable, if not great, D in Romanov and Fleury at a time when they still have Weber, Petry, and Chiarot. They will not be elite, but they will be improved at the blue line.

        I have been saying for two years their forwards are too small. One of the reasons they missed the playoffs last year is that they had too many games lost to injuries and they had zero depth. Size was surely a factor, and so was a lack of talent. They need at least a couple of larger forwards who can skate and score to be truly competitive.

        A big change is that they now have some depth at center. Suzuki has surely shown he can play well now, and in my opinion KK was a completely different player after the break. He put on weight, his skating improved, and he was scoring.

        This doesn’t mean he or Suzuki is the next Crosby, it means to me that the Habs can now ice three competitive centers. And they have Poehing who is a bona fide prospect.

        With regard to Price, he has been both injured and overworked the past several years. Bringing in Jake Allen will provide Price with much needed rest and will surely result in more points in the standings.

        So, to be clear, I am saying the Habs are good enough to make the playoffs this coming year. I also said they were not Cup contenders. Note the difference.

        You can call me a fan boy, that’s ok. I think my assessment is a lot more fair and accurate than yours have been of them, and of the other teams in their conference.

        Still, thanks for coming out to play.

      • Lj your comments are 100 percent based on fanboy perceptions. Mine are using actual numbers. Just so I get this you’re saying the habs defence will be better this year because they have 2 unknown rookie defenceman who may be in the lineup. Poehling has 13 points in 36 all games and he’s already 21. If that’s the best prospect the Habs have then you’re in bigger trouble than I thought. The habs were in 11th place fighting for 12 with Buffalo when the season stopped they were nowhere near a playoff team this year but if you think they’ve improved that much and will make the playoffs next year then that’s ok. It’s hard for fans of there teams to see the reality in front of them. Using numbers and actual production though not only will the habs not make the playoffs but they will be on the bottom 10 of the entire league. Hab fans are some of the most pationate fans in the world and have the most storied hockey franchise to go with it so I hope you’re not to disappointed when I’m shown to be right like I have been the last couple of years. With that being said if Bergie can bring in a couple of high end talent before the season starts then go habs go.

      • Hmmm. Primeau will be ready to take over soon, Caufield and Romanov are also comming within the two next years to take over, Norlinder is doing good in Europe and Suzuki and Kotkaniemi (not Korkiemi) will be even better… They are no McDavid or Eichel but as a group joining the likes of Drouin, Domi, Gallagher, Danault, Petry… They are in better shape than the Bruins will be, especially with that orrific draft year when they had 3 1st rounders and passed on Barzal, Boeser and Connor three times to select Zboril, DeBrusk and Senychyn…

      • Just when I thought we were having reasoned exchanges you go back to being a ****, Roger. You have substituted slightly improved grammar for world class conceit.

        No one who posts here makes their living in pro hockey. Everyone’s opinion here is just that, opinion. Except you, who make declarations as if from the mouth of god. Take note, everyone: Roger declares that based on this season’s results the Habs will be in the bottom 10 in the league next year.

        Go read Craig Button’s assessment of the Habs “no real prospects.” It’s on TSN’s site now. He says, in part: “Alexander Romanov, Caufield, Ryan Poehling and Cayden Primeau are locks to be quality NHLers.” He grades their prospects as A -. But what does he know when Roger Laurin has declared otherwise and what he says is nothing so shoddy as an opinion, it’s “the truth.” If you had any dignity you’d be embarrassed by such statements.

        Button is not the only analyst who projects Romanov to play immediately, but I am not going to do your home work for you and catalogue his or other analysts’ assessments of him or the Habs young players. You are so enamoured with your own “facts” that it is pointless to have an exchange with you.

  5. Kris Letang for a couple of N-95 masks …

    • Ed van impe…Pengy would you make this trade if you were penguins gm

      To Pittsburgh
      Def.. jeff Petry 32 $5.5M
      11 G 29A. 40 PTS

      C- MAx Domi. 25 $3.1 M
      17 goals

      To Montreal
      Def- Kris Letang 33 $7.25M
      16G 28A 44Pts

      C/W. Jered MCCann. 24 $1.25M
      21 goals. 35 Pts

      Money. Ages, skill set almost identical both teams fill needs..

      • Hi BnG

        As I mentioned before; any trade made is completely useless if they keep #3

        Cost cutting is one thing ; but missing the playoffs again (which with #3 in the line-up for the season; has pretty high odds) while Gino and Sid are still highly competitive ; is a big problem

        Setting that aside and just looking at your deal; and setting aside cash and cap; Letang is better than Petry but Domi’s advantage (just looking at this years numbers) is marginal and certainly not as high a difference of Letang over Petry IMHO.

        Re Cap… you are showing 19/20 cap hits and the Cap switch is dang close; however Domi is likely to get a bigger bump than McC … by how much??

        Now cash…. the two known for 20/21 is Petry and Tanger ; so that flip gains $4.25 M differential in Pens favour which will be nowhere near the differential in the Domi/McC flip

        So for Pens they’ll save cash; but will lose Cap space and overall a player swap slightly favouring Habs…. so I wouldn’t do it

        Again ; NO trade that Pens do will likely get them to the playoffs if they keep JJ

        Now ; I know Pens have already done a 6player deal a couple of weeks ago (6 player deals are rare)… but if you add JJ and Alzner in the deal…. where do I sign??:

        Alz and JJ make same Sal next year $3M) so the cash difference is as above

        The Alz play better than JJ makes up for the difference above

        Pens will lose big in Cap ; but they are not spending to Cap anyway; and will save cash. I’d be sad to see Tanger go ; to me by far the best Pens D now and for many many years; but I’d take the trade

        So Tanger; McC; JJ for

        Domi; Petry; Alz


    • Lj, did you day Craig Button?

      I would rather the Easter Bunny rate said prospects but ok, whatever pumps your tires.

  6. Why is Kuemper continually mentioned ? Young good numbers reasonably priced. Arizona would move him for what reason . I say not a chance. With all the goalie options in the market slim to none and slim just left town.

    Murray will not garner a first unless part of a larger package.

    • The thing is, SilverSeven, when it comes to the flat cap, which will be around for at least another year, Chayka has left the Coyotes between the classic rock and a hard place. They have $80,383,902 tied up in 17 players, leaving $1,116,098 to sign SIX! Their 3 RFAs alone (Fischer, Hinostroza and Lyubushkin) cost $3,295,891 collectively off the cap this year. Even at nominal increases to, say, $4 mil – they don’t have enough without clearing substantial space. So, forget about re-signing UFA Hall.

      They can also forget – in this era of so many teams up against the limit – about moving Kessel (32 & $6.8 for 2 more years), Stepan (30 & $6.5 for 1 more year), Goligoski (35 & $5,475,000 for 1 more year) and Hjalmarrson (33 & $5 mil for 1 more year).

      And before anyone tosses out Ekman-Larsson, just consider that, although just 29 y/o, is not the greatest defensive D-man in the league by a wide margin and is costing $8,250,000 off the cap for 7 more years when he’ll be 36! Who do you see investing in THAT in these uncertain economic times?

      So that leaves who to free up the cash needed JUST to re-sign their RFAs? With no cap hits coming back, Kuemper’s $4.5 mil gives them $5,616,098 but even that wouldn’t be enough to cover the 3 RFAs PLUS 3 more roster players. So, who else? Dvorak ($4,450,000 5 more years)? Grabner ($3,350,000 for 1 year)? Demers ($3,937,500 for 1 year)?

      • Arizona looks screwed this year but a lot of money coming off the cap next year. Arizona over paid their young players as they are not worth the contracts they received. Arizona needs that legit number 1 centre.

      • I would consider both stepan for 3C or kessel in Edmonton IF the coyotes were to retain 50%. Who pays what in those deals ? If they are dumps with retention maybe a pick swap mid rounds? Ray bark what you think ? I agree with most your oil takes and thoughts

      • Kuemper would be my first target but I could see some sense in both with 50% retention .

      • Ya, Arizona is in tough George. But I can see them being able to move a guy like Hjalmarrson to a team like Boston who likely wants short term and experience to give it one more go. He is exactly what they need on the left side if they decide to give it another go. Depends on the return.
        Stephan can be moved if they eat some salary. If they eat half the Oil could use him.
        The return for either of those guys? No clue in an off season like this, but he is still a good 3C.
        I can see teams waiting to see how this plays out.
        Also a general comment on the goalie situation. Yes there are plenty available, but there are also plenty of teams looking for one. Kind of like musical chairs, you want to be patient, but not too patient.
        Also would OTT look at a guy like Russell in Edmonton.
        After his bonus only owed $1.5 in real $$ and can still play. Either side actually. Quality vet, which they could use, but his hit is too high which shouldn’t bother OTT. At $1.5 he is cheap.
        Trade him at the deadline for another pick or keep him around for cheap like a Hainsey.
        That has some value for a guy like Melnyk IMO.

      • George O., in addition, losing those draft picks really hurt because they have no “sweeteners”.

      • Yeah. forgot about that redmonsters. That certainly throws a kink into any proposals.

      • Money is tight in the desert agreed. However a combination of 50% held say with a trade and buyout of another should help in keeping young assets like Dvorak and Kuemper .
        Also agree Hall would be a very tall order for the Coyotes.

      • I view the Sabres need for a center and AZ’s need for high draft picks and cap space to be a good fit. All three of AZ’s top centers have higher cap hits than cash salary in 20-21. For me Dvorak for a 2020 2nd and a conditional 1st in 2021. Would be my pick. I could also see a possible trade with the Oilers where the Sabres send Mittelstadt for Jesse Puljujarvi.

      • Hi Craig

        Kessell in Ed even at 50% would be a very big mistake. He is in a big decline and doing so at an accelerated rate

    • I thought it was said on one of the Sportsnet intermissions that Arizona’s new owner is big in the hotel industry which is being battered by covid. It was mentioned that they and the Penguins want to get to an internal cap of 70 million.

      • Hi Tutone

        Many teams will be tightening their belts and reducing payroll…. with so many doing that and as George said; with very limited number of teams available, willing , able to take on higher contracts… the end result has to be buyout…. and yes Penguins are one of those teams where owners (Mario & Ronny) have told GM (Jimbo) cut costs; but you must remain competitive

        He made one move so far… trade moving Bjug; a deal he lost fairly badly. He did save about $1.7 M – $1.8 M cash (cash saved in trade less whatever it costs to replace roster spot [league min in $700 K])

        The obvious buyout of #3 saves immediately $2.1 M cash for next year; less replacement (Pierre Olivier Joseph or Czuczman would be best in house options) … so net savings of $1.3 – $1.4 M…. but more importantly moves Pens from very likely out of playoffs in ‘29 (playing JJ all season) to competing for 1st in Metro (with JJ out).

        Now even better… if they can instead of replacing JJ with Joesph or Czuczman ; they use JJ savings and get UFA Soucy…. Mark Pens down for an excellent shot of 1st in Metro and great chance of meeting Bolts in ECF

        The other buyout option for Pens is fan fav Horny who did have an up year.

        Buying him out saves over $3.5 M cash next year. I know he’s older and oft injured but his 82 game pace this year would have had him at 27-24-51 and plus 14!

      • Comparing Hall to Kessel is an insult.
        While everybody likes to bash Kessel he’s a six time 30G scorer in the league and was a big part of PIT winning two cups. Hall has played 10 playoff games in his career.
        I’d take a flyer on Kessel at 50% retained for two years before signing Hall for 6 at $8M

  7. Ray, as I pointed out the other day, for Melnyk – whose holdings haven’t suffered quite like some owners due to his pharmaceutical holdings, it’s put up or Eff Off time in Ottawa. He’s made the right noises and apparently has given Dorion the green light to spend the cap reserves – judicially. And that does NOT include the likes of a Russell. There are and will be better options around, either in the UFA pool, or through deals with cap-strapped teams (for someone like Hjalmarstrom if they decide to take that short-term route. They do have a deep pool of D prospects and will probably add another this year – either Drysdale or, according to some buzz here, Sanderson.

    • Craig Button ranks the Sens at having the best prospect pool of all Canadian teams. And they have what, 3 picks in the upcoming draft.

      Habs are ranked second.

      • Yes – 3 – in the 1st round. They also have 4 2nd round picks, 2 in the 3rd, 1 each in the 4th and 5th and 2 in the 6th. With their deep pool of prospects, it would seem superfluous to pick all 13 so we can expect at least 3 – maybe as much as 5 – traded

    • Also, Ray, while I agree Arizona could probably move a Stepan if they retained 50% – Hell, they could probably get someone to take Kessel under the same arrangement, that’s $3,250,000 or $3.4 mil they can’t afford to have around their necks as only the full cap hit would give them anywhere near the relief they need. So it would have to be Stepan plus someone else. Or two.

      That’s a rocky road they face so whoever gets the GM job better be ready for a monumental task.

  8. What’s wrong with Seguin he has like 10 points in playoffs making like 8 million a year maybe that’s why he was kneeling he was praying 🙏