NHL Rumor Mill – December 15, 2021

by | Dec 15, 2021 | Rumors | 45 comments

Are the Coyotes willing to entertain offers for Jakob Chychrun? What’s next for Stars goaltender Anton Khudobin after clearing waivers? Find out in today’s NHL rumor mill.


SPORTSNET: In his latest “32 Thoughts”, Elliotte Friedman indicated most teams he’s spoken with said trade talks are “quiet”. However, he reported that it sounds like the Arizona Coyotes “are gauging the market on Jakob Chychrun.” Coyotes GM Bill Armstrong declined to comment on the speculation.

Arizona Coyotes defenseman Jakob Chychrun (NHL Images).

Friedman said the asking price is “massive” but it’s not deterring interest in the 23-year-old defenseman. He’s got three more seasons left on his contract with an annual average value of $4.6 million.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Chychrun has just seven points in 26 games with a plus-minus of minus-29 but that’s more indicative of the weakened roster around him. He had a career-high 41 points in 56 games last season and was considered by some observers as a potential candidate for Team Canada at the 2022 Winter Olympics.

Until now, all the Coyotes trade rumors claimed Chychrun was their only untouchable. Perhaps that’s changed but Armstrong could be simply curious about what the young blueliner might fetch in return. Interested clubs could try to talk him down but I think Armstrong would keep the asking price high, whatever it may be.

Armstrong isn’t in any rush to move Chychrun unless the rearguard has requested a trade and there’s no indication he has. Unless someone’s willing to pay big, Chychrun will remain a Coyote.


THE DALLAS MORNING NEWS: Matthew DeFranks reports the Stars sent Anton Khudobin to their AHL affiliate after he cleared waivers yesterday. The 35-year-old goaltender hadn’t played since Nov. 18 and was a healthy scratch in the Stars’ last eight games.

The Stars attempted to trade Khudobin but his performance and contract were considered deterrents. He has a 3.73 goals-against average and .873 save percentage in seven games and is signed through next season with an annual average value of $3.33 million.

A source told DeFranks some teams show an interest in Khudobin but wanted to see him play more games first. Given his current minimal trade value, the Stars might have to package him with a draft pick or absorb part of his cap hit to move him.

PITTSBURGH HOCKEY NOW: Dan Kingerski believes Khudobin would make a better backup for Penguins starter Tristan Jarry than Casey DeSmith. He pointed to Khudobin replacing sidelined Ben Bishop in the 2020 playoffs and backstopping the Stars to the Stanley Cup Final. Kingerski acknowledged the Penguins would have to shed some salary to take on Khudobin’s cap hit if the Stars won’t retain part of it.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Interest in Khudobin could improve if he plays well in the AHL. His cap hit, however, will remain a sticking point for cap-strapped playoff contenders like the Penguins.


  1. The Yotes would be crazy to trade Chychrun. He’s a great young D-man who they will have to build around.

  2. Throwing out a trade proposal Pens/‘Nucks…

    Zucker (40% retained) and Ruhweedel for Pearson and Schenn

    The Cap hit difference …. Is only 50 K total this year ; and about the same next year (pending what ‘Nucks would pay for a 7th D [Schenn is 850 K]

    Age…. Basically no diff…. Schenn is 6 months older than Ruhweedel; Zucker 7 months older than Pearson

    Zucker and Pearson BOTH have 4 G and 6 A…. a change of scenery is warranted… both should improve production with a new team

    Why would ‘Nucks do it…. change of scenery should increase production for their top 9 winger ; same net Cap hit. More importantly…. Jimbo absolutely adores and craves Zucker (Jimbo gets his years’ long public bromance rekindled with Zucker ). The expense to rekindle his flame is flipping a depth/7th RD for another player Jimbo loves (Ruhweedel). Jimbo gets Zucker for 3.3 next year.

    Why SHOULD Pens do it…

    The flip of Zucker/Pearson should increase production for the same cap hit (the Cap hit is “sunk” this year and next) just due to change of scenery. Zucker can in NO WAY be put on Gino’s or Sid’s line. Pearson can (and has) play up with both). Pearson brings 2 cup rings in his back pack. Pearson has better hands, better overall ice awareness.

    More importantly….. MASSIVE improvement at 3RD for Pens…. Just MASSIVE

    Finally , and very importantly…Pens gain a combined 46 lbs, and a combined 5” in height….that is a big diff come playoffs

    • So overall , “massive improvement for the Pens”,Pens gain size”, “Pens get a little younger”

      While the Canuck’s gain “hopefully a change of scenery on Zucker” and Rutherfords love for Zucker?

      You know what “Jimbo” probably loves more than Zucker or the idea of “massively “ improving his former team?

      His current job.

      This isn’t as awful of a trade proposal as Miller for Zucker, or the countless other trades involving Zucker, but as you clearly point out, it seems to benefit Pittsburgh a hell of a lot more than it does Vancouver.

      • Highly doubt Rutherford makes a garbage for trash trade. Your proposal does zero for the Canucks.

        Schenn has played above expectations this year. One or two heavy hits per game. Pearson is garbage. Invisible most nights, Pens much better off keeping Zucker, at least he can skate.

        Next thing you know youll be forecasting a Jack Johnson trade to Vancouver, because Jimmy loves him.

      • Pengy and Captain Obvious that is not a good trade for the Penguins.

        We had Pearson once and he was terrible hence the reason we dumped him…and Schenn eeeeehhhhhhhhhhh no thanks

      • Nope you dope it doesn’t..

      • Hi CO

        Yes it does benefit Pens much much more than ‘Nucks

        As I said to Ed below…. I hoping that Jimbo trades on emotion (and bromance)

    • Pearson is WORSE than Zucker, plus yesterday you wanted to send Zucker to SJ for Kane … Luke Schenn??? Ruewhedel is way better, faster and can skate better, Schenn can fight (sometimes) … delusional

      • Ed your right but Captain obvious doesn’t think so..good grief he is a mess !!!

      • I’m a mess? You can’t seem to quote anybody correctly and think articles from a month ago in the 4th period are current and accurate? On top of thinking Zucker will get you Miller as the primary piece going the other way.


        Keep living the dream buddy.

        If you’re trying to bait me with your 7 year old half insults, keep trying!!!

      • Hi Ed

        Re Schenn/Ruhweedel…. It’s not even close this year. See what Ron posted here re Schenn. He’s over-performing this year. I’ve watched prob 8 ‘Nucks games …. And he definitely showed way way better than Ruhweedel (I’ve seen all the games he’s played for Pens

        This year Schenn 82 game pace (note: on a struggling team )….. 5-22-27 and + 33.

        Ruhweedels’s pace this year …. 0-7-7 and a +/- of zero

        Schenn can move guys out from in front of the net and can (and does) dish out hard hits. Both…. Ruhweedel can’t do and doesn’t

        Re Zucker /Pearson… Zucker WAS better than Pearson earlier in his career. This year… identical production 4-6-10. Last 3 years…. Pearson 35-38-73; Zucker 33-36-70…. Basically two guys playing equally and equally underperforming …. change of scenery warranted

        As Ron put… ‘Nucks shouldn’t trade to get garbage.

        I only posted this scenario as Jimbo already moved on from Pearson once; and absolute adores (thinks unicorns and fireworks fly out of his butt) Zucker

        The deal of course favours Pens (Schenn this year substantially better than Ruhweedel AND with equal production [Zucker/Pearson] ; and the fact that Zucker should absolutely not be allowed on the ice with Gino or Sid; and not fairing well now with Carter, Pearson the better option)… I was hoping Jimbo’s emotions would get him to do the cap neutral move

    • Pengy……Zucker is a better player than Pearson end of story. We had Pearson once he was awful.

      (While Pearson may need a change of scenery Pittsburgh is a scenario that didn’t work)

      Zucker is a 5 time 20 goal scorer Pearson isn’t.

      I know you don’t like Rudwhedel and quite frankly I don’t either and feel he will get exposed in the playoffs

      Our recent game at Calgary he and Letang were like Black Friday and Cyber Monday with all their giveaways

      But I am willing to give the Devil his due has has played well so far and almost an unsung hero… yikes.

      Schenn is slow and well slow…

      • Hi BNG

        No challenge for me whatsoever on how well Zucker did in the past and that he was a better player than Pearson earlier in his career

        That said this year for the last three years they’re basically equally producing forwards

        Difference is, Zucker is a major drain on the production of Pens top two Cs and Pearson wasn’t

        Absolutely right the Pearson did not produce at a great clip when he was with the Penguins; however he did not detract from the production of Sid or Gino. That cannot be said for Zucker

        The flip of the two forwards in and of itself at worst has zero change to their production but DOES give Sully more flex (as he can’t play Zucker with Gino or Sid) . What SHOULD occur is an increase in production for both (change of scenery) …So both teams gain

        I cede that you and I see Zucker differently . Very differently. Not his past… we agree on his early career. It is his stint with the Pens and his recent production and value that we disagree on.

        That’s what this site is all about. Agreeing to disagree and posting our viewpoints. All good!!

        I’ve been transparent all along that I did not at all like the overpay for Zucker at the time. I think many Pens fans as at now would rather have had the extra $5.5 M in space last summer to have signed another UFA at top 6 LW; AND at the same time have Addison AND (Ceulemans OR L’HeureuxOR Lambos)

        Setting that aside…. This year Schenn is far far better than Ruhweedel. Schenn can hit; and move players easily out from in front of the net (Ruhweedel can do neither effectively). Schenn’s offensive production this year especially is also much better than Ruhweedel and Schenn full year tracking has him at his best numbers in 10 years. Add to that the extra 35 lbs and 3” …. Easy to see the advantage of that flip

        That said; no way Jimbo flips Schenn for CR…. No way. However, with his uncharted love for Zucker, he just may be fooled into the overall trade (which for sure favours Pens)

        Neither is likely to happen soon as ‘Nucks are starting to gel and produce and win again… no need for a knee jerk reaction right now

        An easy trade for Pens is to acquire Psyk (Sabres) for a 5th or 6th. He can fill in better than Ruhweedel at 3RD (I’ve no idea why Sully refuses to try Friedman or Riikola); but more importantly ; Psyk can (and does) play RW and RD and is equally adept at either

        That flex allows Sully to play him 4RW in a pinch when 1 or more D-men are playing hurt… if they go down; he can pop in to play D.

        Fingers crossed on continuing current streak

    • The player the Pens could use is Chariot. Even if the Habs retained 50%, don’t know if the cap would work for the Pens. Habs will want a first rounder.

  3. The Nucks are not going to trade any of their core for awhile. They may be back in the hunt by mid-January!

    • Agreed. Right now it looks like they may have turned the corner.

      I think if they make any trades, they will be purely smart hockey trades. I don’t see them blowing up that roster and making Pennie’s on the dollar trades.

      I doubt they do anything of significance prior to the trade deadline or possibly even the off-season.

      Anything is possible, but Unless they completely fall off a cliff I just don’t see it.

      • Think youre pretty much spot on.

      • Not trying to bate you just saying your trade and Pengy’s idea of Pearson and Schenn for Zucker and Rudwhedel is silly.

        Zucker > Pearson
        Rudwhedel a tad better than Schenn..

        I know you don’t like Zucker but he is way better than Pearson…
        Please have some coffee and wake up Captain

      • Hi BNG

        See my response to Ed above re Zucker vs Pearson (same production this year and over last 3 years)

        They BOTH would benefit a change of scenery

        I can see some picking one over the other… but too close to call IMHO… and since Zucker completely drains Gino’s and Sid’s production, and starting to drain Carter’s… it’s time to move him

        That said…. There is no way that Ruhweedel is as good as Schenn this year…. and Schenn waaaay stronger; can move Fwds out of the crease easily and make very solid hits (Ruhweedel can’t do either effectively) the strength, clearing and hitting abilities lies substantially with the extra 3” and 35 lbs (over Ruhweedel)

        Replacing Ruhweedel and Zucker would go a tremendous way to ensuring Pens finish in a playoff position; and if they get in; would give Pens a much better chance at success

    • First of all, you seriously need to learn where to reply. It isn’t that hard! Last comment on a particular thread where you’re able to reply, hit reply. Not on a completely different thread.

      I’d say things like “dope” , “captain useless” are baiting. Or in my case attempts at baiting. At least attempt to make your baiting funny. I’d actually have to respect your opinion or care about you to get all huffy about these dumb half insults. Neither applies here.

      You don’t see much outside of Pittsburgh and this is grossly obvious.

      I’m not a fan of one single player mentioned in that trade. I again have absolutely no pony in that race. But if you think Rudwhedel is good, it’s seriously time to take off those black and gold glasses. He’s not good. And Pittsburgh would welcome Schenn for him in a heartbeat.

  4. I would love to see Cychun on the Wings! Kenny missed on this pick!
    I say Leddy (retain half salary) a 2023 unprotected 1st, Caps 2022 2nd, and Albert Johansson for Chychun. Leddy is just a replacement for this year, actually he is the Wings best LD. NOT GIVING THEM EDDY!!!!!!

    • I’m Armstrong, I don’t need more draft picks — I have 3 first rounds this year, and 5 second rounders this year alone. But I like what you are thinking Johnny…. maybe another roster player like Smith (someone that can play right away because Yotes have no one to call up from minors). When Holland traded that pick with Datsyuk knew it was going to bite them in the tail. Regardless of all this movement, that team will not be in Arizona for much longer anyway.

      • All those picks can also get NHL players…..I imagine 2 2nds could get a middle six player.

  5. Debrusk. Rielly and a 1st either this year or next do it Don

    • MrB

      I am going to try to top your offer with Vladdy, Kostin, Walman, and Husso. Bill Armstrong knows all of these players from his St. Louis years. I bet he and Doug could strike a deal!?

  6. Last 4 posts. You all tried and failed. A top pair d man with a super contract. And just as importantly. No trade protection. Would be competing against nearly all 29 other teams. Well 28. I don’t think the pens have the pieces to make an offer.

    • Would Chychrun be a top pair D-man on the better teams in the NHL? Maybe, some not all IMO.

      How about this: Grzelcyk and DeBrusk for Chychrun and a 2nd?

      • Was that sarcasm?

      • Nope

      • Oh.

        Doubt chyck goes for the equivalent value of a second and third round pick. If your being generous

      • You may be a little low on their value Chrisms.
        Both young both solid NHL players.
        a 3-4 D and 3rd line winger are worth more than a 2nd and 3rd IMO. Both have control.
        Chychrun had a good year last year and other than that?

      • Dunno ray. You don’t get a first for grezuck and right now bruins would not do better than a third for debrusk. And that is a bit generous considering how few teams have the cap space for a bottom 6 winger at that cap hit. I think my estimates are pretty close.

      • We agree on most things chrisms we a mile apart on this one though.
        Grz plays the 3rd most minutes on a playoff team for starter D this year and is 3rd by 10 seconds a game less than Carlo. Last year 2nd most, on a team that won a playoff series. You could argue is is almost equal to Chychrun but what he has accomplished, but doesn’t have the “upside”, which is an unknown IMO.
        The B’s wouldn’t trade him for a 1st that isn’t in the lottery.
        DeBrusk gets you a first from a team drafting in the back half.

        Chychrun looks like he could be a top pair guy on a good team, but not for sure.

        I think it’s fair, but hey, been wrong before.

  7. Any 5 players off the bruins roster except 37,73,63,88.possibilities include Carlo DebruskULLMAN OR SWAYMAN,GRECZLYK,Studnicka for Cychun.

  8. I have been watching DeBrusk . Frankly not much there at least with the eye test. I don’t see any return value with his current salary. He could be a Sam Bennett but I doubt it. His stock will drop moving forward.
    Rutherford averaged a trade a month with the Pens. You don’t think he has an itchy trigger finger ? Someone

    • I repeat: The Nucks are not going to trade any of their core for awhile. They may be back in the hunt by mid-January!

      • What goes up….

        Despite what TSN already called the “Boudreau bump”, after an initial boost of confidence and freshness in that locker room, I suspect when the schedule begins to get tighter as the season drags on, the Canucks will revert to their norm, perhaps be a .500 team the rest of the way.

        There will be plenty of time for Rutherford to evaluate what he has over the rest of this season, and unless they make the playoffs and give a strong performance in the first round, I would imagine some tweaking would occur in the offseason!

  9. Cmon Captain they were at least 8 year old insults ,,,my my sensitive aren’t we are you generation Z?

    A millennial?

    Just having some fun loosen up Francis…

    • Actually, I’m nowhere near either. That would be you.

      I’m gen x. But again, when attempting humor, it’s important to remember to TRY and make the childish jabs funny. It’s an important part of humor. Being funny usually helps.

      • Ok I’ll work on that gen X promise..
        happy holidays

      • Booked any good hotels lately? 🙂

        (My attempt at childish humor)

  10. Dang, so many proposals involving Chychrun!

    I would caution everybody to remember the maxim that the team getting the better player almost always wins the trade.

    Sorry Ray, but DeBrusk and Grzelcyk don’t move the needle .. Grz would be a placeholder at this stage of his career and thus the whole trade kind of revolves around hoping DeBrusk becomes a 30-40 goal scorer to make up for losing Chychrun (not a 30 goal scorer but equal value as a D-man)..

    It may be true that AZ has 3 first rounders in this next draft, but they could always accept a 2023 1st rounder as part of a package, spread out the talent-finding through the draft, as your implication I think is right, can’t have too many of your extra picks stacked in the same draft – if they all make it to the NHL they’ll need post-ELCs all at once!! In any case, of AZ’s 3 1st rounders for 2022, they will have their own, plus Colorado’s and Carolina’s, as Montreal’s obviously will be top 10 haha. Wouldn’t hurt to acquire another top 15 pick in the 2022 draft.

    Someone had mentioned Detroit – imagine that top pairing of Chychrun and Seider, or splitting them and having 1A/1B pairings. Perhaps Yzerman would consider trading 2023’s 1st rounder, expecting an even more competitive team next season.

    I’m not sure how Buffalo feels about Dahlin’s development, but a one-for-one swap of the two would be interesting!

    • Great post. I especially like the Detroit musings. They’d be set on the back end for a very long time.
      As for Buffalo, I’d never part with Dahlin unless I was getting Makar, Hughes, Fox or Charlie Mac in return.

      • They certainly would be! (Detroit) – reading back up, it was Johnny Z that mentioned Detroit in the Chychrun conversation, and he even mentioned the 2023 1st round pick. So, apologies Johnny, you got to that idea first 😉

        That’s fair on the Dahlin part. I haven’t seen him play much, a few games here and there over the last two years. Makar would be a steal one for one, at this point. Too bad about Byram’s health issues! Seems to have slowed down the Girard rumors.

  11. Zucker’s best days are behind him. IMO the Pens are going to have to sell him off as he is now a negative asset, but that cap hit for his quickly declining production is gross.