NHL Rumor Mill – June 23, 2021

by | Jun 23, 2021 | Rumors | 51 comments

Does Matthew Tkachuk want out of Calgary to go home to St. Louis? Could he be swapped for Vladimir Tarasenko? What players are on the Flyers’ offseason shopping list. Find out in today’s NHL rumor mill.


YAHOO! SPORTS: Steven Psihogias cited Sportsnet 650’s Shane O’Brien floating a rumor about Calgary Flames winger Matthew Tkachuk during a recent appearance on SiriusXM NHL Network’s “The Power Play with Steve Kouleas”.

Calgary Flames winger Matthew Tkachuk (NHL Images).

O’Brien claimed he heard the 23-year-old Tkachuk wants out of Calgary to play in his hometown of St. Louis. “I got (Vladimir) Tarasenko going to Calgary for Tkachuk,” he said. “I heard Tkachuk wants out of Calgary, Tarasenko’s time’s up there, I think that’s a trade that could happen.”

SPECTOR’S NOTE: I’m not going to disparage O’Brien or question his sources, but this move makes no sense for the Flames. Why trade Tkachuk for a winger who’s six years older and has a recent history of shoulder surgeries? For that matter, why would Tarasenko waive his full no-trade clause to join the Flames?

Sportsnet 960’s Ryan Pinder weighed in on that rumor. “In reaching out to some folks around the (Calgary) organization, they described this rumor in two words. The first one being bull. The second one sounding a lot like shirt.”

True or not, this will only stoke speculation about Tkachuk’s future in Calgary. GM Brad Treliving indicated he’d evaluate all his options after the Flames missed this year’s playoffs. Maybe Tkachuk will be part of any significant changes Treliving has in store. If he does want to return to St. Louis, the Flames will want a good young forward like Jordan Kyrou as part of the return, not a banged-up veteran.

Tarasenko’s name popped up in the rumor mill as some observers pondered the possibility of the Blues leaving him exposed in the expansion draft. There’s been no indication they’re going to approach him about waiving his no-trade clause, but that’s usually not the type of thing a team or player makes public. It will be interesting to see if he appears again in this summer’s offseason trade talk.


THE PHILADELPHIA INQUIRER: Sam Carchidi reports defensemen and goaltenders are on the offseason shopping list of Flyers GM Chuck Fletcher. He points out they gave up a league-leading 3.52 goals-against per game this season.

Carchidi believes Fletcher has “a long list of defensemen” on his radar. They include Columbus’ Seth Jones, Carolina’s Dougie Hamilton, Nashville’s Ryan Ellis, Minnesota’s Matt Dumba and Edmonton’s Adam Larsson.

He could also be looking at pending free-agent goaltenders such as Buffalo’s Linus Ullmark, Toronto’s Frederik Andersen, Colorado’s Philipp Grubauer, Detroit’s Jonathan Bernier and Tampa Bay’s Anders Nilsson for a potential 1B goalie to 1A Carter Hart.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: The Flyers have been frequently linked to Jones, Hamilton and Dumba in the rumor mill. I don’t see the Predators trading Ellis unless they get a significant player in return. The Oilers, meanwhile, appear intent on re-signing Larsson.

Grubauer’s a Vezina Trophy Finalist this season. He’s no “1B” and I doubt the Avalanche will let him depart via free agency. Ullmark, Andersen and Bernier would be good options. Nilsson’s been sidelined by concussion issues since last season.


  1. I have wondered why the assumption that Larson resigns with Edmonton just because Friedman uses an Edmonton based link that he is going to sign for more or less the same money he is currently being paid and that negotiations are going well.

    It seems incredible to me Larson ( or all the other UFAs) would not investigate other opportunities. He might still decide for Edmonton. These guys generally only get one kick at the can.

    • I think it depends on the player and the organization OBD.
      Seth Jones is going to test the market, good on him for saying early so the team can make decisions.
      If true, big if, Larsson may simply like it in EDM and the direction of the team.
      And if he does but still decides to test the market, that means the team will too as they may need to replace you.
      You may end up unhappy with the result and the options are no better, or even worse than where you are. But you have already been replaced because the team would be foolish to wait and left high and dry.
      You’re either in or you’re out, so if you want to stay, then stay.

    • There is something said about security. There have been more than a few players who decided to go to FA only to end up with less than what their original team offered them in the first place. Especially during this flat cap period. Players like Seth Jones are going to FA to get out of a team or situation they don’t like, not necessarily for more money.

    • Just curious but how do you Oiler fans view the Larsson for Hall trade now?

      Hall has bounced around everywhere while Larsson found his home in Edmonton.

      What say ye?

      • Was thinking the same thing the other day nevinsrip. Turns out not too bad.

  2. Tkachuk should be the last player out of Calgary so this is one of the most stupid rumours I have heard in a long time, and for Tarasenko no less.

    All those goalies except Nilsson are looking at a 1A destination if possible, not 1B

    As for Larsson, unless he has ties to Edmonton I would think that he would at least look at what he can get in FA. In my opinion he has really come into his own these last 1-2 years and probably deserve a raise

    • Considering phillys track record with goalies and harts inevitable decline to one and done I’d say philly is a 1a situation

      • No way Grubauer goes to Philadelphia, the graveyard for goaltenders!…Grubbi proved his worth and then some during the season and playoff, the team hung him out to dry in Vegas series. Hart, I still don’t consider an elite goaltender, he get’s all the hype from the east coast and didn’t exactly play all that well in “the bubble” prior to this years demise. So, I still need to be convinced about him, he has holes but he does have a great glove hand it seems. Flyers are funny team, literally wasted their whole season due to forwards not backchecking/ or showing up most nights. Maybe they turn it around this year? I think they may have tuned out their coach somewhat, he’s a good coach and had them going in the right direction. I would move out some of those veteran guys: Voracek , Koneckny, JVR? Let the younger guys begin to play. To me their the most predictable team to watch in the NHL and have been for long time, just waiting for stretch passes to go on offense for one. At least Alaine Vingeault had them structured with their 5v5 play and defense but I don’t know what happened to them this past year?

      • Right? Flyers are one of the easiest teams to play for. little travel, and on most nights, no back checking, or hard work really…
        Coaches and players just have to be able to look into the camera with a straight face, night after night and say “we weren’t ready to play…

  3. Pens and Flames should be trade partners, Pens need grit and the Flames need skill … probably won’t happen though …

    • @ Ed Van Impe….You are probably right not sure what we even offer Calgary ?

      Maybe Jason Zucker, POJ, and a number # 1 draft pick? +

  4. Tkachuk would demand more than Tarasenko . Notice how Flames have had very few Russians in the lineup for decades . Not happening
    Kyrou Thomas Dunn to open any discussion.
    Treliving is sneaky. Could be in on any deal.

    • Shane O’Brien is a worse insider than he was a hockey player.. And he was a terrible player!

  5. I think the NYR ears just pricked up .They want to add grit to their top six. Ever since Wilson turned the Breadman into the Doh boy

    • Thachuk wouldn’t even fight his own battles until his dad got on his case (Rumored) after his multiple dangerous cheap shots on Kassian. What makes you think he will standup for anybody?
      Grit? Only if smoking guys who aren’t looking, or falling on tenders when they are exposed and down is considered grit these days.

      Take Brady, not Matt.

      • I recall Tkachuk standing up to the meathead Kasian. After the game he got smoked .Who has one role and not even that good at it. Tkachuk is not a fighter but certainly not afraid to answer the bell.

      • Tkachuk has never stood up to Kassian on his own. The only reason why he fought Kassian that once was because his teammates, or Lucic, pressured him into it after turtling the game before. Funny how after that incident Tkachuk hasn’t gone after another player out of his weight class. He only goes around picking fights with players smaller than him now like Ethan Bear and Jeremy Lauzon.

      • Ray, I don’t see any of the Oiler’s top players doing anything but run from a fight. I recall Draisaitl running from little Mangiapane last year.

        Expecting our best player to fight your biggest goon (and he did) is like us expecting McDirty to fight Lucic after one of his cheapshot elbows or boarding incidents.

        Chucky didn’t think the trade off of spending 5 minutes in the box with a neanderthal was a good deal. Oiler fans can say what they want but he definitely beat up Bear, and he fought Kassian after being jumped from behind by him. The only problem I have, is Lucic should have hung a lickin on that big goof.

      • You should listen to the turtle song I attached Sparky, it’s catchy. I think you’ll like it.
        If Tkachuk didn’t want to fight Kassian then he shouldn’t have blindsided him twice behind the net when Kassian was engaged with another player.
        Leaving his D zone responsibility in he process I might add. He targeted him, it’s obvious.
        Watch the videos.
        You do that, you deserve everything Kassian does to you.
        First he turtled, then he got roasted, then he fought next game.
        Tkachuk is a knob, and if Cgy qualifies him for $9M, they will regret it.
        If he wants to leave, give him his wish.
        If I had to bet Lucic would probably prefer to kick Thachuk’s ass than Kassian’s.
        Can’t stand that guy.

      • Your on glue sparky . On hockey fights .com , over 100 people viewed and voted with 70% giving bear the nod , personally I would be with the 10% who had it a draw . Few missed swings by each maybe a glancing blow. The fact that lucic didn’t step in the next game tells you everything you need to know . In your theory , Edmonton’s goon got off about 5-6 haymakers (swings, most missed) on your best player . If lucic or the coach felt Kassian was in the wrong , lucic would have been lined up across from Kassian off the hop , he wasn’t for a reason . Tkachuk was taking heat from all across the league , and from his dad , Kassian was getting texts and calls from around the league with respect for his handling of turtle boy .

      • Craig, Likely means 70% of the voters were Oiler fans. I just watched the fight again and to my eye Tkachuk landed 9 punches and Bear 3. Hard to see how Bear won. Lucic was accused after that game of being too buddy, buddy with his old team mates. The following game Lucic has finally realized what team he is on.

        Bottom line, Flames best player will fight if he has to. Oiler’s best players hide behind their goons.

      • Yes I’m sure only the oilers fans voted lol , that makes sense in your world maybe . Our definitions of punches landed are drastically different, I’m not sure any truly landed , certainly not 12 like you counted .
        Bottom line , I don’t want drai or mcdavid fighting ever , UNLESS they pull something like chucky did , in that case , answer your own bell , don’t turtle away and have the league , your own dad and any true hockey fans lose respect for you, or they will be next with a song dedicated to them , like turtle boy .

      • The fact there is a hockey fights website is so irritating.

      • I’m not a regular visitor to hockey fights but it came up when looking for the bear tkachuk fight . I don’t really have a problem with it , it’s a part of the game , that fans love , or a lot of them . After all , they are 1 step away from Vince McMahon stepping in in sleeveless stripes to call the games. I heard game 6 they might even lower the steel cage or do a lumberjack match .

  6. with vegas looking thin at center do ya trade tuch to cgy for monohan plus?

    then move johny G for a center

    • nope , they most likely player(s) being moved are Smith or Marchessault. Tuch will only get better.

      • I will give credit to Nic Roy , he has impressed me

      • Never going to happen but

        to BUF: Karlsson, Marchessault & Smith (if resigned for same 5m for 3-4 yrs)
        to VGS: Eichel (if healthy) & Okposo

        the Eichel & Tuch play at the 2nd line.

        it is fun watching March & Smith & Karlssons line.

      • I don’t think Vegas can make a Eichle trade work. As per Cap Friendly they already have 22 players signed with only $2.4 million in cap space. By trading Marchessault and Smith to get Eichel that would be reducing their roster size to 21. Now they will need to sign 2 more players to fill out their roster with only $2.4 million in cap space.

      • @IHC…how do you get Karlsson and Marchessault to waive their M-NTC’s for the Sabres? I highly doubt they would.

        Also, Not exactly what the Sabres are looking for as reported in yesterday’s rumors.

    • Why would Calgary make that trade? That would leave them incredible thin at center.

  7. Maybe Tkachuk, for Robert Thomas +.

    Tarasenko is damaged goods

  8. Bull dirt?

  9. I really don’t see in anyway there be a chance that MT is leaving Calgary! He is young, one of their better contributors, and not the type you look to move out when you are retooling. He is a fantasy pipedream for hockey fans.

    Johnny G, Sean M are the most likely trade targets, they should listen on Mark G … the issue is, all of them have trade protection.

  10. Would CGY trade a top prospect &2 pick along with Lucic (who waived his NMC for expansion) for OEL?? Would AZ take that offer.

    AZ gets cap relief in 2 yrs rather than even longer. Can also trade Kessel this off season for even more room.

    AZ gets a top prospect & 2 picks for taking Lucic.

    • OEL would have to approve that move. Do you think he will wave his NMC to go to Calgary?

      • First off KevJam, Calgary doesn’t want OEL with that contract. Secondly the Flames already have half of team Sweden on their team so he might want to go there. Unlike Edmonton

      • CGY better set up to compete beyond where AZ is. I think he may consider it.

        Just though the numbers work along with opportunity

      • Sparky? Did I hit a sore spot? The Oilers have no issues in attracting players. Barrie proved that last season by taking less money to play in Edmonton.
        Having the bottom half of Team Sweden on your team you aren’t going to attacked to many top Swedish players to your team.;)

      • No sore spot KJ, Wow Barrie wanted to go to Edmonton, for 1 year. You talk like the Oilers are a successful franchise. The last 14 yrs say different. Didn’t someone here say Edmonton was voted by the players as the LAST place they want to go?

        I personally like the city of Edmonton, but because I cheer for the Flames, I don’t like the Oilers.

      • OEL is 8 yrs younger than Giordano whom Seattle could be taking.

      • Sparky, I have lived in Edmonton and Calgary (2000 to 2011), even split season tix for the Flames. Was there for the cup run.
        Loved Calgary and wouldn’t mind retiring near there. Great city.
        So is Edmonton, but preferred living in Calgary because the mountains are so close and the golf is better.
        Edmonton is a better sports town than Calgary though, by a lot. Even the sports radio station is better.
        Tkachuk is a knob, even Lucic knows that.

        Even Sutter doesn’t like him which is why he cut his minutes more than any other player on the team.

        Oil are on the brink of being a contender for the cup for years, Calgary is on the brink of blowing it up and starting over. Start by moving Tkachuk.

      • People say a lot of things here, it doesn’t make them true. Like how the Knights will sweep the Canadians in the playoffs. The last vote that I found about the least desirable city to play in by players was in 2019 and Edmonton was 3rd on that list with only 10% of the vote followed by Calgary at 4%.
        The last 2 seasons the Oilers finished in second place in their division, then there was also 2016 playoffs when they were a game 7 and a goalie interference call away from the conference finals. So they have had a few successful season in the last 5 seasons. It’s not like the Flames have had a whole lot of success in the last 14 season.

      • I made the Sutter crack. But he did cut his minutes more than any other player. Doesn’t mean he doesn’t like him I suppose, right about that Sparky. I should have said he doesn’t like having him on the ice as much.

        Anyway just chirpin’ ya because Flames vs Oil rivalry. I made the Lucic crack because you said Lucic didn’t defend him. Just a play on that.

        No hard feelings, was trying to be funny, failed I guess.

        I hope Calgary does well, just not when they play EDM.

        Still can’t stand Tkachuk and if the Kassian incident is a reflection of his character? He is a knob.

  11. Ray, KevJ, Craig et al , how do you know what Sutter thinks? How do you know what Tkachuk’s team-mate’s think of him? How do you know who wants to go where? Are you insiders?

    It is OK with me if you don’t like him, in fact I wouldn’t want it any other way . Chucky is well liked by the most Flames fans and that is really all that matters to us.

    • Also , sparky , are you an insider ? In your previous post you said OEL wouldn’t go to Edmonton , do you know treliving or Calgary management personally ? You said the flames wouldn’t want him ? Insider ?

  12. Sparky I didn’t say anything about Sutter , or his teammates , except lucic and also didn’t mention anything about players wanting go there or not .
    What I did say is the proof is right in front of your eyes . If you have a lucic on your team , and “your best player” is ragdolled by “the other teams goon” and the goon gets off 5-6 good cuts at your best player , if the coach or lucic are doing there job , he is addressing Kassian on the opening draw , not your best player . Unless … the coach and lucic have told turtlechuk he’s on his own to clean up his own mess . Regardless of what turtlechuk wants , the coach especially is not doing his job , unless he was taking a long term approach and teaching the young punk a lesson .

  13. Flames radio had a segment a few months ago speculating as to why Tkachuk was not playing old Tkachuk style hockey, and rumor is some of his teammates would indeed see Tkachuk’s antics and react like, “That’s just chucky being chucky” kind of laughing it off, perhaps even frowning upon it.. and then Tkachuk became mopey and basically said, not out loud, “fine, you don’t want me to play tough I won’t” … again, just speculation based on conversations those guys have with insiders, but Tkachuk maybe reacted poorly to some teammate criticism/reaction to his style.