NHL Rumor Mill – May 25, 2021

by | May 25, 2021 | Rumors | 54 comments

Could the Flyers land Dougie Hamilton via free agency this summer? Should the Rangers attempt to acquire Nazem Kadri from the Avalanche. What’s the latest on J.T. Miller? Check out the latest in today’s NHL rumor mill.


NBC SPORTS PHILADELPHIA: Jordan Hall examined the possibility of the Flyers signing Dougie Hamilton. The Carolina Hurricanes defenseman is slated to become an unrestricted free agent this summer.

Carolina Hurricanes defenseman Dougie Hamilton (NHL Images).

Signing Hamilton away from the Hurricanes won’t be easy. They finished among the league’s top teams this season and he’s in a good spot there. There’s mutual interest between Hamilton and Hurricanes management in getting a deal done.

The Flyers must also be cognizant that Claude Giroux and Sean Couturier will be due for new contracts after next season, with the latter due for a big raise.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Hall cited Flyers GM Chuck Fletcher saying his club will have to get creative to address their roster issues. With over $69 million invested in 17 players for 2021-22 (as per Cap Friendly), that creativity will require freeing up sufficient cap room for someone like Hamilton without tying up too much for future signings like Couturier. That could prove too daunting a challenge.


NEW YORK POST: Larry Brooks suggests the Rangers should consider acquiring Nazem Kadri if the Colorado Avalanche dangles the 30-year-old center on the trade market this summer. Kadri is serving his third playoff suspension in four years and the sixth overall in his nine NHL season.

Despite Kadri’s suspension history, Brooks thinks he could be the type of “nasty, jagged-edge, checking-type center who can score” that the Rangers need.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Maybe Rangers GM Chris Drury would consider it if Kadri is shopped this summer. However, they would better off acquiring a physical forward who isn’t as reckless as the Avalanche center.


THE PROVINCE: Steve Ewen reports the agent for Vancouver Canucks forward J.T. Miller said his client loves Vancouver and hasn’t asked for a trade. Brian Bartlett said Miller “has loved Vancouver and we’ve never discussed him wanting out.” He added this stemmed from a meme with a fake quote attributed to his client.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Sportsnet’s Elliotte Friedman also cited a source over the weekend citing Miller saying he didn’t want to leave the Canucks. There could be some changes to the Canucks roster over the summer. Some players could be traded or bought out but Miller won’t be among them.


  1. Please, no on Kadri, the Rangers don’t need to be losing games to bad penalties. They should be able to find some grit elsewhere I think with more upside

    In fact, I’d have said no, please no, ever since watching him tear our Thornton’s beard. Only a crazy person ruins a beard that awesome!

  2. To be fair, Brooks also stated the problems with Kadri. There are plenty of other 3rd and 4th line players that the Rangers can look into

    The Canucks should see what they can get for Miller since he will be at least 30 when they play in the playoffs next time

    • Rangers need to be harder to play against upfront for sure. Kadri in theory would fit the bill but he is not worth their time with his control issues.

      • until the playoff incident kadri to me was “soft” and didnt play with much of a edge at all…if anyone needed to be beat up landy handled it…

  3. Yeah, the Flyers have to get creative because of Chuck Fletcher … as a Pens fan I hope the Flyers give him a ten year extension … and they will be one less team to worry about …

  4. Flyers don’t need hamilton, we need seth jones or josh manson type dman.

    • MP,

      Agreed, a bruiser that can actually play. No marshmellows.

  5. Good thing Jimmy Rutherford ran Fleury and Murray out of town before he quit. Penguins might actually have the series lead if they were using an NHL goalie.

    Hextalls got a major dumpster fire on his hands.

    Curious to see what hes going to get for whats left of Malkin or perennial Norris contender Kristopher LeTurnover.

  6. Penguins could easily have swept Islanders out played them most of series but the score is what counts not the play. Sid looks average and Malkin is a head case with poor attitude and a broken body. Penguins are caught between a rock and a hard place impossible to move their old guys and are not winning with what they have. Just my opinion and yes my Bruins are aging also but at least their contracts expire at same time.

    • If Colorado fails to make the finals this year, they have the pieces to legitimately trade for Crosby. Good young F, Good young D and picks. It could even be other prospects as they are stacked.

      I am sure they would look to trade Malkin before him, but if the pens wanted tool on the fly and in a hurry the Avs make most sense to me.

    • Im sad to say but they should really trade Malkin while they can, hasnt got much left in the tank, Crosby can still play but he needs help

  7. Coilers just proved you need more than the two best players in he world to win in the playoffs .
    No depth scoring at all . Ethan Bear was terrible . I believe he was on he ice 5 of the last 7 scored. The tying goal a brutal giveaway . Sat him two O.T. Periods came out Just in-time for the winner

    • SilverSeven,

      Uhmmm, the 2 best players in the world (and likely the universe) play in Toronto. Just ask TSN or Sportsnet after their night Matthews and Marner ballwashing.

      Watching either of them is very similar to having to endure 3 hours of Pierre Mcguire gushing over Crosby while he washes his nuts.

      Sickening and unwatchable.


  8. The Oilers should at least construct potential trade of McDavid for multiple assets. Quebec/colorado won the Lindros trade. The Oilers could win a McDavid trade.

    I am not anti McDavid and do consider him to be the best regular season player. I would point out he did the give away for the tying goal in the game 2 days ago and the winning goal last night.

    • Old Blue Dog, while Lindros and McDavid had very similar stats after around 400 games played, the difference there is, when the Lindros deal was finally decreed in favour of the Quebec-Philadelphia over the one made with the Rangers (wouldn’t something like that fiasco be a hot issue in these pages!), Lindros had done squat, whereas McDavid has been lighting it up for several seasons now. It would take a GM with gonads the size of basketballs to come to an agreement with anyone to move him out of town. and I don’t think Holland is that GM.

      But I agree, would that ever have them lining up for a gate attraction like no other.

      Unfortunately, among all teams fan bases there is a large % who latch onto certain players as quasi-gods and you can bet that element would be screaming bloody murder, vowing never to return to another Edmonton game, yadda yadda. Like they did here when Dorion moved Karlsson.

      • Um, I kinda hate to break the news to ya, but Big E in today’s NHL would have been as good offensively as McD, however, he would have been even more dominant and physically and defensively. Headshots were a plenty in the 90s. I would kinda steer clear of that comparison. Times yours

      • No kidding! Clearly, you didn’t get the gist of what I wrote and although I kinda hate to set you right – I’ll try. I KNOW how dominant Lindros became – and certainly would have continued sans concussions – but the difference I was pointing out is that, when he was dealt from Quebec, he had yet to play a single NHL game and so had proven nothing at that level, whereas McDavid has several dominant seasons recorded.

        Which is why I say trading him would be a LOT more difficult to sell to the home-town fans as compared to when Lindros was dealt. There they were selling/buying potential.


    • I usually agree with you on most topics OBD. Not this one! They can’t win that trade.

      McDavid is still learning to win in playoffs, and agree he wasn’t great this time around.
      We all learn when we fail. He and Draisaitl were way better 200′ players this regular season, now the next step. Plus Holland has some money and youth coming. Hopefully they can split the 2 moving forward.

      Interesting stat – not one penalty was called on a WPG player when defending McDavid. Zero. Not even the knee on knee from Pionk.
      Seems odd to me. The way these games were called did not benefit the Oil. Other series were called differently is all I am saying.

      All in all, all part of growing up for the Oil IMO.

      • Did I count correctly – the Oil have 11 UFAs now? That creates a lot of opportunity. But the Oilers are in rare company with 25% of their cap space devoted to two players.

        With only a cursory look I could find only Vegas amongst the contenders with that much cap space devoted to two players. To make the point the Avalanche have three players at approximately 25%.

        Parenthetically, cap friendly has the Lightening at just shy of a 99 million cap hit. I believe this is because the kept Kucherov out of the line up all year, committing what we might generously call legal larceny.

      • To be fair, Tampa and Vega are entering an off season with very little cap space available.
        Tampa already has 22 players under contract for next season and are already over the cap by $5 million. Vegas has 22 players under contract for next season and only $2 million in cap space. The Oilers have 17 players under contract with $22 million in cap space available with just Nurse and Nuge as important pieces to resign.

      • KevJam, we have some time with Nurse but would be nice to have done this off season, new cap hit won’t be til 22/23.
        Larsson and Nuge.
        The Oil have room to lock both of them up for a max of $9M. $3.5 and $5.5.
        Nuge can get more elsewhere as he will get paid as a 2C instead of a W, we’ll see if he stays.
        The question on Klefbom looms large as well.

  9. Brooksie is obsessed with this “grit” bs. He won’t be happy until Fotiu comes out of retirement. This narrative started because of late season losses to Isles and the Wilson fiasco. Let’s be real though. Kreider, Trouba, and Lindgren were all out for that Washington game. Does Pitt have any more grit than Rangers? Isn’t Washington done already? Rangers have a pretty big team. Last year they drafted Schneider and Cuylle. Both pretty big, nasty types. They signed Barron, who’s 6’4 220lbs. I’d like to see them add a 4th liner who can actually fight, but it’s not going to ale a huge difference in wins or losses. No thanks to Kadri

    • How about Marcus Foligno?

    • @slick
      End of the season was rough when Trouba, Lindgren and Kreider so team seemed extra soft.
      That said if 2c or 3c was little harder to play against and the 4th line could be deployed with an edge the Rangers will grow into it
      Someone needs to win faceoffs next season

      • 1st priority will be getting a top 6 center. Agree Blackwell should not be in top 6. Buchnevich is a guy I’d move on from too.

      • ahhh I like Buch but there is not enough ice time for him+Kakko+Kratsov. and his new salary

      • @DS ya 1st line needs to become

        Kratsov to slot 2RW with Strome & Bread

        then Kreider with Chytil and Gauthier

        Buch is needed but not at a 4 yr plus deal for 4.5 mill plus

    • @Slick

      Players like Coleman & Cizikas are the type of bottom 6 players the Rangers need to go after within reason. Guys that play 200 ft. I do not want to see Blackwell in top 6 and building a 4th line with Coleman & Cizikas may be worth considering to slightly overpay for.

      Other guys I’d consider trying to trade for are
      Sammy Blais in STL and Greenway in Minny.

      On D CHARA is my #1 pick to get to bottom pair with Jones. I do not want to see Smith back. Not because he was not tough or a good teammate but he did not elevate his teammates to the next level and does not have the experience Chara can help their young D core. To mentor Jones and the gang like he did to McAvoy and company would be worth the $$$ spent.

    • Slick 62 , that’s hilarious , “Fotiu out of retirement”. Look at what St. Louis tried to do to the Avalanche, they tried to “grit them” to death! We just filled up the back of their net! The game evolved, but you need certain grit for sure but the days of Nick Fotiu are over, where’s Terry O’Reilly when you need him? At least O’Reilly could put the puck in the back of the net and had plenty of grit to spare. Plus Landeskog beat the crap out of Schenn. So, the Avalanche have grit to their game/ or can match it when they have to! GO AVS!!!!

      • Ya Tommyboy, the fear amongst us Bruins fans would be the big bad Caps played tough playoff hockey and could the B’s stand up to it.
        Turns out they did. Pretty soundly I might add.

        The Big Bad Caps have lost in the first round in 3 straight years.

        Need grit to go to the tough places, take the hits to make plays and stand up when needed. If you can do that and dish it out, even better.

      • Tommy boy and Ray. Exactly. This idea that you add players to be a “deterrent” is a joke. Was Wilson “deterred” when he took Carlo’s head off a couple months ago?

  10. Come on folks. If Kadri hits the block, many GM’s will be lining up to take a look at him. The guy is certainly reckless, no doubt about that. But he is a legit 2nd line center, full season he is giving you 25-30 goals and putting up 45-60 points, while also being one of the best overall faceoff guys in the league. He is great on the powerplay and often trusted for key defensive zone draws. Plus for a 2C he is only sitting at $4.5 million.

    I don’t like how reckless he is. But when he is on the ice he makes a difference and there is no changing that. Gotta coach him to do just that, stay on the ice, get him an emotional coach or something to keep him in check.

    Even with the reckless play, if it were not for the fact that Colorado was in a cap bind with very key players to resign … Makar, Landeskog, Grauber, Jost, Johnsson … with Eric Johnson coming off LTIR next season (hopefully) and maybe even looking at keeping Saad … then Kadri wouldn’t even be a discussion.

    Jost isn’t a 2C and I don’t see any immediate replacement for Kadri in Colorado. It isn’t that they want to let him go. He just provided an easy scape-goat with his play.

    • Kadri can pot you some goals, but to win a cup you have to be disciplined. NK is not the 2nd line center a team aligns with to chase down Lord Stanley’s Silver. Jost is not a 2C, but Newhook is and he’s already showing promise this playoff round.

      By Naz…don’t let the door hit you on the way out.

    • Kadri is a good player, but I think I’d rather have Kerfoot in the playoffs. I liked Kadri but he blows it in the playoffs every year, he’s 30 and isn’t going to learn at this point.

  11. Here is my armchair GM pitch to Edmonton to give them a blockbuster trade bait:

    To Toronto:
    Leon Drasaitl
    Darnell Nurse

    To Edmonton:
    Frederik Andersen
    William Nylander
    Morgan Reilly
    Travis Dermott

    • As a Leafs fan, where do I sign?
      Andersen is an FA this year, he isn’t going to be brought back.

      This trade is never happening, even if you replace Nylander with Marner

      • No kidding. I would as a Habs fan love this trade but it is effectively Nylander and Reilly for Draisatle and Nurse. Holland would be run out of town on a rail if he made this deal. Anderson is not an upgrade on Smith even as Smith is what, 38? Dermott? He has two goals this year. An usher could replace him.

    • Well, aren’t Andersen and Dermott both UFA’s after the season ? If Edmonton wanted either, which I doubt they do, they can have them for nothing. So the trade is really Nylander/Reilly for Drasaitl/Nurse. I would rather have Nurse and Drasaitl than Nylander/Reilly, so no thank you.

    • Two Leaf marshmellows for Draisitl and Nurse?

      Good luck with that.

  12. I think it will be Nugent moving on unless he is a fair bit less than he currently makes. The deal is needed that allows Edmonton to add a second line forward. Mcdavid & Draisaitl are in on over 55% of Edmonton scoring. Diversity in scoring especially in the playoffs is essential

    • To BUF: Neal & Koskinen

      To EDM: Skinner & Tokarski

      there is your scoring for Buffalo

      Skinner played and scored well when put with an actual center like Eichel. it’s when he was put in the bottom 6 he struggled. He got better once Kruger got canned.

      • Skinner’s contract runs 5 years longer than Neal’s, I think there is less than a 0% chance that the oilers do this.

      • So your saying there is still a chance then? lol

      • Ihatecrosby. Just for you.
        To Buffalo: Kravtsov, Strome,Buchnevich, Nils Lundkvist,Matthew Robertson, this years 1st and next years 1st
        To NYR: Eichel and Reinhart
        To Vancouver: Howden and Blackwell.
        To NYR: MacEwen and Virtanen.
        Kreider-Chytil- Virtanen
        Barron-MacEwen- Gauthier

    • Klefbom & pick to WSH for Kuznetsov & Schutltz?
      let RNH walk ? let barrie walk let chiasson walk let ennis walk
      clears space for them both

      then WSH tries to sign RNH for their 2C
      and creates a tad more room for more $ to OVI too

      • IHC, the long term goal is to have Draisaitl as their 2C. Most wingers with Nuge’s production will cost less than he does. So no need for Kuznetzov.
        Not sure Klefbom plays another game in the NHL. Too soon to tell.
        If he doesn’t they have a big hole on LD that needs to be filled. Broberg has the physical tools but needs another year of pro hockey IMO.

      • It will be interesting to see the interest level in kuznetsov. 7.8 for another 4 years is a big commitment and he comes with a lot of baggage

      • good points gentlemen.

        kuznetsov & wilson to Seattle for thier#1 pick this year?


        i am trying to wheel & deal here

  13. Any team signing Hamilton better have a defenseman similar to Slavin on their roster.

    • GP,

      I think that’s part of the reason the Flyers were mentioned as suitors for Hamilton, Provorov fits that exact description.

  14. Gretzky leaves the Oilers………again.

    • Did he promise “Mess” not to cry this time?

      • A great hockey player he was – a riveting conversationalist he isn’t.

  15. I learned one thing while reading through these comments. If a “Ron Jull” makes a comment that refers to Toronto in any way it’s not worth reading.
    Envy has never looked so ugly.