NHL Rumor Mill – February 2, 2021

by | Feb 2, 2021 | Rumors | 40 comments

Check out the latest on Tony DeAngelo, Sam Bennett and Victor Mete in today’s NHL rumor mill.


NEW YORK POST: Mark Fischer yesterday reported Rangers general manager Jeff Gorton confirmed Tony DeAngelo has played his final game with the club. The 25-year-old defenseman cleared waivers yesterday and was placed on the club’s taxi squad two days following an altercation with goaltender Alexandar Georgiev. Fischer reports the Rangers are trying to trade DeAngelo.

Mollie Walker cited her colleague Larry Brooks reporting Rangers rookie defenseman K’Andre Miller broke up the altercation between DeAngelo and Georgiev with no other players involved. She reports the Rangers are working closely with the defenseman’s agent, Pat Brisson, to reach a solution.

NEWSDAY: Colin Stephenson reports the Rangers and Brisson are trying to find a team willing to acquire DeAngelo via trade but it won’t be easy. None of the 30 clubs claimed him off waiver. In addition to the blueliner’s personal baggage, he carries a $4.8 million annual average value through 2021-22.

SI.COM/THE HOCKEY NEWS: Ryan Kennedy reports DeAngelo has courted controversy throughout his playing career, including recently trolling people on Twitter with his political views. He’s had character issues dating back to his Junior days with the OHL’s Sarnia Sting, but teams willing to give him second and third chances because of his offensive abilities.

Tony DeAngelo has played his final game with the New York Rangers (NHL Images).

SPECTOR’S NOTE: DeAngelo has undeniable offensive skills but his lousy defensive play and cap hit probably contributed as much to his being passed over in waivers yesterday as his personality.

There always seems to be an NHL general manager somewhere willing to take a chance on a young player with character or maturity issues if they have a decent measure of talent potentially useful to their roster.

We’ll find out in the coming days if DeAngelo really has run out of chances. The Rangers might draw interest if they agree to pick up a healthy chunk of his salary-cap hit and/or include a sweetener like a draft pick or prospect.


SPORTSNET: Eric Francis reports sources claimed Calgary Flames management was blindsided by Elliotte Friedman’s report on Saturday that Sam Bennett’s agent, Darren Ferris, indicated his client preferred a change of scenery. However, the 24-year-old forward has not formally requested a trade.

No one is questioning Friedman’s report but they are questioning whether this was an appropriate way for Ferris to handle the situation. Bennett hasn’t spoken to the Flames’ coaches about his playing time and GM Brad Treliving wasn’t informed that Bennett might be interested in a trade.

CALGARY SUN: Wes Gilbertson reports Bennett has yet to give his side of the story. He wonders if the forward really wants to be traded and if so why do so early in a shortened season. He also wondered if Ferris said too much too soon “or at least too publicly?” Bennett’s teammates, meanwhile, insisted this situation won’t be a distraction for them.

SI.COM/THE HOCKEY NEWS: Matt Larkin believes Bennett could still have trade value despite his inconsistent performance, pointing to one report suggesting the Anaheim Ducks or Toronto Maple Leafs would make sense as trade partners.

However, Larkin thinks it would be risky for the Flames to trade Bennett now. Any player received in exchange would have to be quarantined for two weeks if they’re coming from a US-based club. Moving Bennett could also affect which players they protect in this summer’s Seattle expansion draft, possibly forcing them to expose one they otherwise would’ve protected if Bennett were still on the roster.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: One theory suggests Ferris saw how the recent trade requests made by Patrik Laine, Jack Roslovic and Pierre-Luc Dubois resulted in those players getting moved and is following suit for his client. Bennett might be reluctant to talk about this but the fallout from his agent’s comments could leave him little choice. His future and status with the club will remain a lingering, unwelcome distraction if he doesn’t address it soon.


SPORTSNET: Eric Engels reports Victor Mete’s season debut last night against the Vancouver Canucks was not an effort by the Montreal Canadiens to showcase the little-used defenseman for a trade. Darren Ferris, who also represents Mete, told reporters his camp would prefer if his client could be traded. Canadiens GM Marc Bergevin denied Mete requested a trade and indicated he wasn’t going to trade him.

Canadiens coach Claude Julien said they were trying to find the right opportunity to get Mete into the lineup as they didn’t want to leave him sitting out for too long. He also said a player agent’s comments aren’t about to influence their decisions.

Engels said trading Mete would also affect the Canadiens’ blueline depth. It’s why Bergevin didn’t send Mete to the taxi squad as he would’ve been plucked off the waiver wire by another club.


  1. Sounds like DeAngelo is a locker room cancer.

    • Would his pattern of issues, coupled with the recent fight with a teammate, be grounds for voiding his contract?

      I know there have only been a couple of instances of this in the past, and for different issues. I’m really not familiar with the criteria required for contract termination.

      • Since the contract was signed recently, I suppose the Rangers would have a hard time including previous issues as “evidence” if they did pursue termination. Those issues were known when they signed him.

    • Interesting how this guy was given “second and third chances” yet this year in the draft the MSM and keyboard warriors torpedoed another young man’s future as a draft prospect thereby curtailing his chances at an education and earning a living. Cancel culture is alive and well

      • First wonder how this guy is considered a prospect in your mind? And how is the MSM or keyboard warriors cancelling a guy that the team says is disruptive, with incidents like taking and keeping the puck when K’Andre Miller scored his first goal and getting in a fight with the goalie in view of the cameras? That’s the MSM cancelling him?

      • If you are referring to Mitchell Miller, last I heard he was still enrolled at UND. Or at least he was allowed to stay if he chose to.
        If he has his head on straight he will get another chance at hockey.
        I agree it shouldn’t prevent him from having a career if he shows he has changed, and he is good enough to make it.
        My guess is unless he is a total knob, he will get another chance. As will Deangelo.
        Up to them.

      • Cancel culture is not a hockey thing.

        Let’s keep it about Hockey and not politics


    • I’m not sure this was Friedman’s fault: it seems like it was Ferris who spoke out of turn.

      • Agreed, you can’t fault Friedman for reporting what a player agent told him.

      • 100% Mark. Ferris has done this way too many times . No reason to make trade requests public.

  3. Rangers might have to hold half salary an give a pick to move deangelo, they need defensive help in a big way

    • He is actually a cheap buyout after the season.

      • Yes the buyout next summer is not much especially if they have to take back a bad contract that goes beyond this season to move in

        But I would think moving him asap helps the team have less distractions

  4. Ferris has taken his cue from Allan Walsh and is contesting the title of agent that GM’s dislike dealing with.

    The act is old, making the team look unreasonable, the player greedy and both frequently disgruntled at the end….with agent a hero for getting a contract signed.

    • Ewww Walsh! Good call. They are both awful for us fans via the media…bottom line is, what really do they have to gain like habfan said and exactly for what he said…pen to paper, period.

  5. This recent agent talk last year could in the future hurt his other clients. As a GM I would be weary to sign/trade for a player who has Walsh or Ferris as agent

  6. Mete was an outstanding -2 last night in where his team won 6-2 …

    and with games getting postponed left and right I really wouldn’t let the quarantine requirement worry me if I wanted to make a trade … if it makes sense, do it …

    • Mete is a player with great wheels but small size and not a lot of offense. There is a reason why he slid down the Habs’ depth chart.

      That said, the – 2 is not an indication of his play last night. The first Canuck goal was a knuckleball deflection that fooled Price. The second Canuck goal started with a mistake by another Habs player.

      As long as the Habs have to manage cap space to keep Perry in the line up it makes sense for them to keep Mete at $735K.

  7. Would add on the DeAngelo talk. Gorton said at press conference that he had a meeting with DeAngelo after he was benched and scratched at beginning of season. He told him that the issues need to stop and if something else happened they would cut ties. With latest altercation, Gorton said he had no choice but to make good in his word. If they can’t trade him, he won’t play. They’ll pay him to sit home and buy him out in off season.

  8. Yesterday’s report of the DeAngelo altercation was more interesting than today’s. It had it that Chris Kreider had ended the scuffle by punching DeAngelo in the face. The reporter who next interviews DeAngelo should check his face for bruises.

    • Kreider denied that was the case. But who knows, except that DeAngelo is a poor man’s Sean Avery. I can’t imagine why another GM would take on a player with a toxic attitude who fights with team mates.

  9. Victor Mete for Sami Niku
    A change of scenery for both. Thoughts?

    • Victor Mete plus plus plus for Niku I would think. Potential for Niku is way beyond Mete

      • Why would Montreal consider this at all? Jets have had a weak D for a few years and Niku dressed for 51 games and 0 playoff games.

        Mete was drafted a year later and has dressed for 172 games plus 10 playoff games.

        Mete would start in Winnipeg and Niku would be in Laval (AHL)

    • I like it. A fair trade. But both still buried. How about both to pens for free?

  10. As Lyle mentioned, it turned out it was Miller that got between the 2 players. Rumors about Kreider punching DeAngelo seem to be just that. I was all for keeping him a couple years ago when he lacked any value. You can see the talent was there. Was surprised they didn’t get rid of him this past off season, although it sounds like they tried. Probably was asking too much coming off a pretty decent season. Still think he’d be a good add for Columbus. Maybe Torts can straighten him out

    • Just a sinister thought brought on by the good-old-days comment, without anything to support it: In those days, a law suit was probably less likely to come out of a fight than it is today. If Kreider injured DeAngelo with a punch in the face, a smart lawyer could have DeAngelo on the Rangers payroll without him ever working. Wouldn’t the Rangers want to cover it up?

  11. In the old days, you would fight your opponents not your teammates.

    • In-fighting happens. Emotions run high, frustrations get the better of people.

      I’d wager that in the “good old days” this kind of thing happened at least as often as today but the media and fans never heard a word about it.

      • DeAngelo’s behaviour prior to this had Gorton warn him that there would be no next time. This is clearly beyond whatever you imagine were the “good old days.”

      • I was replying specifically to Frank’s comment regarding fighting with teammates. Nothing I wrote indicates otherwise.

        Regarding DeAngelo’s “other behavior”; DeAngelo appears to be a real turd. I can’t imagine Gordie Howe, Mark Messier, Terry O’Reilly et al would have put up with him in the “good old days”. I highly doubt it would have been a goalie fighting with him.

        Of course, that was pre-cap so running a player out of town was a much simpler proposition and he would have simply been demoted or released.

    • Ive heard that DeAngelo gave Gorgiev a lot of sh** when they where both in AHL Hartford

    • Frank lj. So the research. Physical confrontation between teammates is far from uncommon in nhl history

  12. Locker room disputes have always happened. Ask BrindAmour and Lindros ask Iginla and Phanuef. These are two that come to mind. Usually one leaves town. In this case it is DeAngelo. In this case he had been warned. The risk with ADA is the Rangers hold him out of spite – can’t find a deal blah blah – and buy him out next summer. Essentially ending his career. Which may have happened anyway… Privileged nob… One of the first things pros are told is to watch who you associate with and refrain from social media. What ever you are caught doing is on line forever (re Phelps).

  13. Any value in DeAngelo 50 percent retained and Howden to Calgary for Bennett?

    Working a ton will try to see replies

    Ps pretty backhand Michigan’s attempt by sid

    • Nope

    • Ihatecrosby

      That would be a big no. Calgary doesn’t need or want him. The flames defense is actually really good this year.

      I don’t really see a fit with the Rangers

  14. I truly believe the Flames value Bennett. Looks like he is not mailing it A couple of shifts with the top lines last night. I question his offensive prowess though . Checks most of the other boxes on everything else and won’t be given away.

    • He doesn’t have a great shot. His other intangibles are above average. I’d take him on the Bruins in a heartbeat.
      His plus minus is skewed because he generally gets tougher assignments and playes with lesser players.
      I’d send Debrusk to Cowtown for him, if they’d consider it. Flames don’t need defensemen. The stable is full.