NHL Rumor Mill – December 29, 2021

by | Dec 29, 2021 | Rumors | 23 comments

A look at several proposed Bruins trade targets plus some Red Wings speculation in today’s NHL rumor mill.

BOSTON HOCKEY NOW: Jimmy Murphy recently looked at some possible trade targets for the Bruins. He suggested Arizona Coyotes winger (and former Bruin) Phil Kessel as an option to replace Jake DeBrusk if they can trade the latter. The 34-year-old Kessel’s put up decent stats on a horrible Coyotes club and could provide the Bruins with middle-six scoring they need.

Arizona Coyotes winger Phil Kessel (NHL Images).

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Kessel for DeBrusk: who says no? Probably Coyotes general manager Bill Armstrong. He’ll likely want a draft pick and prospect for Kessel, and that pick could be a second-rounder if you want him to absorb a healthy chunk of the Coyotes’ share ($6.8 million) of Kessel’s $8 million cap hit. That’s assuming the Bruins are on the winger’s eight-team trade list or that he’s willing to add them to that list.

Other options included pending other pending unrestricted free agents such as the Pittsburgh Penguins’ Bryan Rust, Seattle Kraken’s Mark Giordano, San Jose Sharks Tomas Hertl and Dallas Stars’ Joe Pavelski.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: I don’t see the Penguins parting with Rust as long as they remain in playoff contention. They’ll likely keep him as an “own rental” if unable to reach an agreement on a contract extension before the March 21 trade deadline.

Giordano’s situation is an interesting one. The Kraken named him their first captain in franchise history and undoubtedly hope to re-sign him, but the 37-year-old defenseman isn’t getting any younger and his opportunities to play for a Stanley Cup contender are dwindling. He has a list of 19 preferred trade destinations.

The Sharks and Stars are just a handful of points outside of a Western Conference wild-card berth. They’ll retain Hertl and Pavelski if they should vault back into postseason berths.

Moving either guy won’t be easy as they each have three-team trade lists. Perhaps they could be convinced to widen those lists if their respective teams asked them to do so.

THE ATHLETIC: In a recent mailbag segment, Max Bultman was asked about possible moves by the Detroit Red Wings before this year’s trade deadline.

He doesn’t see the Wings parting with Tyler Bertuzzi even though he’s a year away from UFA status and missed several games because of his vaccination status. He doesn’t see any team parting with draft picks and prospects for a player like Bertuzzi who would miss a bunch of games in Canada this season.

Bultman suggested seeing what they could get for pending UFAs like Nick Leddy, Vladislav Namestnikov or Thomas Greiss if the Wings become sellers. If they’re buyers, he proposed a “fairly-young, change-of-scenery candidate like Boston’s Jake DeBrusk.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Bear in mind that Bultman is merely speculating here and isn’t saying the Wings will consider trading Bertuzzi, Leddy, Namestnikov or Greiss or pursuing DeBrusk. Still, it’ll be interesting to see what GM Steve Yzerman has up his sleeve at this season’s deadline after swinging the biggest trade of the day at last season’s deadline.

Where the Wings sit in the standings as the deadline approaches could determine what moves he makes. They’re currently holding the last wild-card berth in the Eastern Conference. I doubt he’ll be a seller if they’re still in the position or higher in the standings by deadline day.


  1. No sense in trading for Bertuzzi if he can’t play in Canada for a Canadian team, or vs a Canadian team during the playoffs.
    I’m betting he remains with the Wings.
    I’d like to pull Gio and McCann from Seattle, if at all possible.

    • I wonder what will happen with Bertuzzi on his next contract. Assuming that the Vaccination policies will stay in place which seems like a pretty safe bet, how much do you pay him? He’s a Supreme talent that would have probably been looking at a 7-8 million a year contract. Does a team sign him knowing that if you’re playing a Canadian team in the playoffs he might not be available for most of them?. How much is he hurting the team at that point? Can you imagine game 7 Stanley cup finals and one of your best players can’t play just because he refused to get Vaccinated? Seems pretty selfish to me.

    • Captain coal in the stocking..Yes he is struggling but he is a 5 time 20 goal scorer he has value. You add a Marcus Peterson 25 having a good season +14 @ $4.1 a d a high pick. Yes he has so.e value teams like Detroit Buffalo Anaheim Ki gs teams that need speed Kraken he will b moved

  2. No to any of the others although after thinking about it throw in a Third and Debrusk& Kessel might be an option, but Hertl is the main guy. They need a GOOD right now more than anything with the loss Of Zobril.

    • You talk so much crap about Bruins front office. Now you think fat Phil might be a good move lol clueless

  3. What Boston needs more then anything is for Hall, Foligno, Smith and Haula to start contributing more then they have.

    If that doesn’t happen no sense fixing the lD or bring in ufa’s as the cupboards only have a few cans left and can’t be giving everything away.

    Unless it’s the fall for Bedard next season.

    • Caper. I. Agree. If what. Bruins have cannot get to their potential. It make little sense. To buy any big tickets at the deadline as it won’t be enough to get to final. If they do start helping out the 2ndary scoring they go for it. And Kessel will not be brought back to beantown ever

    • Both Foligno, Huala &Nosek, couldn’t score on my nieces bantam house league team, they are totally useless.

      • This ones way to easy, but I’d be disappointed in myself for picking the low hanging fruit.

        Have a good night, Rick!

  4. Seems to me that, with an aging core, Boston should start thinking rebuild, soon. Which, to me, means passing on Kessel and Hertl. Instead, depending on contract status, Sweeney should consider making everyone 35+, maybe even 30+ available for deadline trades, getting picks &/or prospects in return.

    • Kessel will never be a Bruin thinking otherwise is moronic

      Bruins are not at the full rebuild mode just yet

  5. How bout Malkin saying he is rich enough when asked about next contract. Could be a rare significant hometown discount?

    • Lets see when they start negotiating..when his agent is there..I ove Malkin and he has been a big part of 3 Stanley cupsl

      But i wouldnt pay him at 35 injury prone moody more than $7 million..

      I would add incentives games played points etc

    • That’s nice of Malkin, considering he hasn’t played a game this season and is making 9.5 mil.

      • Slick..well said he has averaged missing 20 games a season the last 4 years.

        We call it the annual vacation for Malkin..all pens fans just wo der each year when it will come…Lol

        Early this year..

  6. I think pens wait and see how he does when he comes back here shortly but the last he played he still was over a point per game player vs stingy isles despite being hobbled. Not gonna be a lot on the ufa or trade market. Maybe hertl makes it to ufa? Malkin when healthy, and you are right that’s a big when, is still a top ten center. Or was end of year last year.
    If he goes for 6.5-7.5 it’ll be a steal.

    • 100 agreed.Chrisms.. i would love Hertl as our new second line center next year..maybe hard but a Christmas miracle maybe..

      I would like chuchyrn for our defense, he is having a bad season-29
      But the two previous years 12 goals 18 goals 30 goals for a dman. +4 one year – 6 the other.
      Maybe brian rust and a pick?

      • Why would an pending ufa and even a first that’s gonna be mid to late get chychy? Pens don’t have the assets for chychy.

  7. Chrisms…. Maybe Zucker, a choice of defenseman Matheson or Petersson and a number 2 draft pick..

    Zucker gives them a decent second line winger not a UFA

    Peterson 25 locked up at only $4.1 for 4 years having a good season..or Matheson also having a boun e back season and a high pick???

    • Nope. Zuckers snakebit. Has little trade value. Petterson is a decent middle pair but not a prize. Chychy will get a first from whomever trades for him.

      Pens do not have the assets to do this.

    • Zucker again?

      Teams simply do not trade valuable pieces for guys like Zucker, ever. Certainly not teams looking to rebuild.

      Maybe, (and I mean long shot) a team takes a guy like Zucker to balance out the cap if needed. But he certainly isn’t going to be the primary player involved in any trade involving Hetl, JT Miller, or ANY top pairing defensemen.

      The best Pittsburgh can realistically hope for is a team trading another struggling player with a similar cap hit / contract and term.

      What team isn’t beating this proposed deal? He’s 29, (2 weeks from 30) struggling and overpaid. Not exactly a player rebuilding teams dream of landing. Definitely can’t think of any similar trades of rebuilding/ retooling teams have made in the past.

    • Zucker actually has a negative trade value. The Pens would need to add a significant asset to get rid of him. No one is trading FOR Zucker.

  8. Sweeney will be gone in 2022. Good riddance he has destroyed the bruins.Take Neely with you.