NHL Rumor Mill – June 14, 2021

by | Jun 14, 2021 | Rumors | 30 comments

Could the Avalanche let Gabriel Landeskog walk via free agency? Could they shop Samuel Girard? Check out the latest in today’s NHL rumor mill.


THE DENVER POST: Mike Chambers, Mark Kiszla and Ryan O’Halloron discussed possible offseason moves for the Colorado Avalanche following their second-round elimination by the Vegas Golden Knights.

Could the Colorado Avalanche part ways with Gabriel Landeskog? (NHL Images)

They mused over Gabriel Landeskog’s future with the club following his disappointing performance against the Golden Knights. Chambers speculates the Avs could offer their captain a “take it or leave it” offer of $5 million annually and not at his preferred term. O’Halloran believes a “bad team with salary-cap space” like the Los Angeles Kings and Anaheim Ducks seeking a “heart-and-guts leader like Landeskog” will give him an offer he can’t or won’t refuse.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Avalanche general manager Joe Sakic faces some difficult decisions this summer. Cap Friendly indicates he has $61.7 million invested in 18 players with Landeskog, goaltender Philipp Grubauer and winger Brandon Saad as unrestricted free agents and defenseman Cale Makar a restricted free agent.

The Avs will get some additional cap space when they lose a player to the Seattle Kraken in the expansion draft but it will still be expensive to re-sign those four. They can’t afford to lose Grubauer to free agency and Makar will get a hefty raise as a Norris Trophy finalist.

How much Landeskog wants will determine if he still has a future in Colorado. Chambers’ pitch of $5 million annually would probably ensure his departure.

Samuel Girard also had a difficult series against the Golden Knights. The 23-year-old defenseman is earning $5 million annually through 2025-26. Kiszla suggests Sakic check Girard’s value in the trade market, pointing out they have enough blue-line “wizardry” with Makar. O’Halloran thinks Sakic will listen to offers as the Avs need cap flexibility for Makar’s new contract. If they keep Girard, O’Halloran believes they need to add a defenseman like Jamie Oleksiak to give him the space he needs to use his puck-moving skills.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Moving Girard to free up some cap space makes sense, but it could also deplete their defense corps if they lose an unprotected defenseman (like perhaps Ryan Graves) in the expansion draft. If they trade Girard they could promote from within or perhaps look for an affordable physical defender.

If Sakic decides to make a blockbuster move, Chambers believes he should target a third-line power forward similar to Vegas’ Alex Tuch and “a big, heavy defenseman”. Kiszla proposed offering Girard to the Columbus Blue Jackets for Seth Jones, though he admitted the Jackets could be hesitant to do that deal. O’Halloran proposed pursuing Buffalo’s Jack Eichel but also suggested more realistic options like Montreal’s Phillip Danault or Toronto’s Nick Foligno.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Sakic has shown in the past his willingness to make big moves. We can’t discount he’ll make a big deal or two this summer to address his club’s needs.

Trading for Jones seemed like a bad idea given the Avs’ blueline depth. But if they lose Graves and decide to trade Girard, perhaps pursuing the Jacket defenseman wouldn’t be such a bad idea. Sakic could consider signing Danault or Foligno via free agency but he could seek better options in the trade market.


  1. I’m surprised that Nazem Kadri’s name didn’t make the list of potential changes for Colorado.
    Once again he hurt his team in the playoffs by taking a suspension when the Avs needed him the most.
    Does that guarantee Kadri a trip out of town or will Colorado give him another chance?

    • As reading this I thought exactly the same. You like Kadri’s play, BUT being suspended 3 out of the last playoff performances is just total lack of teamwork and mental fortitude. Some team will take the risk however….

  2. Girard for Seth Jones??? Bwa ha ha ha ha ha ha ha … utterly preposterous … how and why Kadri hasn’t gotten his teeth knocked down his throat by now is a great mystery to me … Avs sure could have used his grit and jam against Vegas … and Landy will be a great addition to the team he signs with, Avs will miss him …

  3. I don’t see the Avs letting Landeskog walk.
    If Girard is available, I hope Bergevin looks in on it. I’ll say for the millionth time, as well as their defense has played in the postseason, the Habs need a solid, puck moving LD. Girard’s play in his own zone is not what Bergevin normally looks for, but his offensive abilities make him worthwhile. Hopefully his being a Quebecker will tempt the Habs. Drouin could be a good fit for the Habs. He played with MacKinnon in the Q.

    • Av’s ask will likely start with Romanov. I would think Sakic’s preference would be getting players on ELC’s and exempt from the Kraken scooping them

      • Girard is 5’10” and 179 pounds.
        EXACTLY the kid of defence man that Bergevin has been loading up on and is giving us success in the playoffs, lol.

        Does he replace Romanov, Chiarot or Edmundson?

        Mtl is actually loaded with LD in the development pipeline and Girard is an LD.

        And why should we offer Romanov when the idea is to off-load Drouin?

        A) I’d rather have Romanov
        B) I hope not.

        Drouin is going, I agree.
        Let’s make a hockey deal, not some sociological arrangement.


  4. How much of Drouin’s salary do the Habs eat and what do they have to add. The D man , Girard, is probably a good idea for the Habs. The real question is how much negative value does Drouin have.

    Just today in the news section a Dallas player retired due to depression. The Avs would have to be worried about that potential with Drouin.

    • “Dallas player retired due to depression”….wrong….Steven John’s retired due to post trauma headaches and concussions. He was a strong defensive player with a bazooka for a slap shot…he didn’t retire because he was depressed. He retired for health reasons. (so he could have a life and a future) Much like Andrew Shaw and none ever said he was depressed….His not being able to play the game he loves was why he was depressed.

    • The Habs will lose a D-man Seattle. Likely Chiarot.
      I realize that Girard is different than their other D-men. That’s what they need.

      • Howard,

        You don’t know that, it’s just your opinion.

        It might happen, and, if it does, then it might be the time to consider Girard.
        Not before.

        They might equally lose Allen, so should we be trading for, for eg, Driedger (S?) beforehand?

        Makes no sense at all.

        Or maybe it will be Armia, or Lekhonen.

        Or maybe Weber is exposed and Petry, Edmundson and Chiarot are protected?

        Or maybe Bergevin will cut a deal.

        You have no idea, nor do I.

        Better to wait, imo.

        btw, I would prefer Drouin/Risto.


  5. Wow a take it or leave it cut in pay for one of the best bargains in the league not to mention cutting his term.

    Landeskog will get offers and could sign in a New York minute if he declared UFA.

    This guy has been underpaid for years in exchange for long term security, there’s no way Sakic makes such an insulting offer.

  6. is this the year we see an offer sheet or two get signed? Makar could be a target

  7. Douglas Hamilton has been granted permission to speak with other clubs. Don Waddell won’t pay him 8 million per. Wonder if anyone else will?

    • And what Hamilton wants in and of itself makes me laugh. Isn’t this the same cat that bitched about the lightning being $18 million over the salary cap (which really was half that when you subtract the 2 LTIR for Gaborik and Nilsson)? And now he wants to force whomever he signs with to throw cap management to the wind

  8. Girard for Risto plus work both both sides?

    Avs get tougher and similar $ so if they lose Graves they have some toughness still albeit it on the RD side.

  9. Girard’s trade value took a hit in the playoffs, and he isn’t exactly cheap. Kadri is gone, and again, his trade value has surely suffered because he is an undisciplined moron. Finally, the Avs would be silly to let Landeskogget away, but they also can’t pay him $7.5 mil or more in a flat cap environment. Unfortunately for Colorado, some other team will, possibly the Kraken.

  10. TO COL: Kreider & Hajek
    TO NYR: Kadri & Girard

    NYR gets 3C and Kreider replaces Saad or Landy ( in case he doesn’t resign) and gets depth D to cover for Girard. NYR taking Kadri why they dont get a pick for the Girard value differential.

    • Kreider not waiving nmc. Rangers aren’t taking Kadri in place of guy that’ll probably be Capt next year. And what need do they have for Girardis when they’re already loaded on left side?

  11. Lately folks are stating as “fact” that Drouin is gone next season.

    How is this a fact?????

    He’s under contract for 2 more years at $5.5 million

    He’s a Hab for the next two year and on the Cap unless:

    1- he’s traded
    2-he’s left unprotected and claimed by Seattle
    3-he retires
    4- he stays on LTIR .

    1,2 and 3 are unlikely , 4 is a possibility.

  12. Calm down you guys, first of all these columnist who cove the AVS might cover the AVS but they don’t know what they’re talking about half the time, especially Kisla, the worst sports journalist there is. He’s always throwing someone under the bus to get someone to read his column, he’s a hack at best!!!…Landeskog is the Captain, he’s not going anywhere, the team would suffer greatly without him. Girard, is expendable, although I like him , he get’s pushed around by the other teams especially in the playoffs and he was awful against Vegas. The AVS abandonment of Grubauer was awful and cost them the series. I would like to see if they can move Kadri and Girard in a package to get another defensive defenseman , maybe like Oleksiak? What do others think?

    • what about to Buffalo for Risto plus something?

      • ihatecrosby, you mean Ristolinan to AVS for Kadri and Girard plus something additional, like draft pick or Bjork? Yeah, I would be open to that if I were the AVS. Maybe another forward, they got some good young guys coming up their with Buffalo

      • exactly bc Risto wants out so you get Girard for him and then can flip Kadri

        should be traded to boston to play along with Marchand or to WSH to play alongside Wilson

        dirty players line.

  13. Risto wants out? When did he say that?

  14. If I’m Boston I sign Landeskog before Hall couple years ago there were rumors of Landeskog to Boston. Maybe sign both and let Krech walk.

    • Obe…nice thought but this team will need to get some quality DMen….they really only have one they can count on right now… Grzelcyk is a PP guy and a #6 Dman….Carlo isnt a healthy person 4 concussions in 5 years

  15. A team that trades for Girard should have an opening on first pair LD. Girards problems shows when he plays D behind the 3rd and 4th line on the 2nd or 3rd pair.
    If Avs let Landy go they are idiots, however I agree that term and not cap is the thing to watch for, his play risks going south in 3-4 years
    If you think Columbus will trade Jones for Girard you are nuts
    A player the Avs should look at is Armia in Montreal, he has had a really good season

  16. Heard this rumor … DeBrusk to the Oilers for Zack Kassian

    • No. Hard pass.