NHL Rumor Mill – February 8, 2022

by | Feb 8, 2022 | Rumors | 51 comments

Should the Canadiens, Kings or Ducks attempt to acquire Jakob Chychrun? What’s the latest on the Senators? Find out in today’s NHL rumor mill.


MONTREAL HOCKEY NOW: Jimmy Murphy cites an NHL source claiming the Canadiens made plenty of calls during the recent All-Star break to gauge the trade market ahead of the March 21 deadline. The sources speculated they could be looking at more of a retool than a rebuild with player-for-player and money-for-money deals.

Arizona Coyotes defenseman Jakob Chychrun (NHL Images).

Murphy wondered if the Canadiens might try to get into the bidding for Arizona Coyotes defenseman Jakob Chychrun. They’re expected to part with two left-side blueliners in Ben Chiarot and Brett Kulak before the trade deadline and could also move right-shot Jeff Petry.

The issue is the Coyotes seek a first-round pick as part of the return for Chychrun. The Canadiens don’t want to go into this year’s draft (which they’re hosting) without a first-rounder. Murphy’s source suggests it might be possible if the Canadiens acquire an additional first-round pick and include that in a pitch to the Coyotes.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: It’s an interesting premise though we don’t know if that fits in with whatever plans the Canadiens new management has in store for this club. No way they’ll part with their first-round pick. It was supposed to go to the Coyotes as part of last summer’s Christian Dvorak deal but the Habs are now all but assured of retaining it given the conditions of the trade tied to their lowly position in the standings. If they do pursue Chychrun they could attempt to get the Coyotes to take on a salaried player to reduce some payroll.

Murphy suggested Jonathan Drouin, who has a year remaining at $5.25 million. However, the Coyotes could be on his three-team no-trade list plus they might prefer a player who’s not going to bolt on them via free agency next year.

THE ATHLETIC: Lisa Dillman examined the pros and cons of the Los Angeles Kings potentially acquiring Chychrun. While he could provide experienced depth to their top-four defense, there are concerns about the drop-off in his performance this season after a career-best effort in 2020-21. Still, he could be worth the risk if the asking price is reasonable and doesn’t include top prospect Quinton Byfield.

In a recent mailbag segment, Eric Stephens was asked if acquiring Chychrun would make sense for the Anaheim Ducks if they’re unable to sign pending free agent Hampus Lindholm to a contract extension. He believes the Coyotes blueliner’s affordable contract and puck-moving skills could make him a good replacement for Lindholm. However, the Coyotes aren’t under pressure to move Chychrun and their asking price could be costly.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: There’s some conjecture suggesting Coyotes general manager Bill Armstrong wouldn’t want to ship Chychrun to a division or conference rival. Subsequent reports, however, dispute this, which only makes sense as Armstrong shouldn’t turn down a terrific offer simply because it comes from the Kings or Ducks.

For now, we don’t know if those two clubs have made a pitch for Chychrun but they’re both in a good position to do so. Nevertheless, they’re also not under any pressure right now to make a big move. They could prefer sticking with what they’ve got, see how this season plays out and look at Chychrun or other options via trades or free agency in the offseason.


TSN (via THE SCORE): Pierre LeBrun reports the Ottawa Senators were a popular target for trade phone calls in recent days. They’re expected to be sellers at the trade deadline. Possible trade chips include pending unrestricted free agents such as Chris Tierney, Zach Sanford, Nick Paul, Tyler Ennis, Josh Brown and Anton Forsberg.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: LeBrun also said the Senators have an opportunity to be buyers as well because of their salary-cap space to shape their roster for next season. The Athletic’s Ian Mendes took note of general manager Pierre Dorion’s recent comments on TSN 1200 suggesting they’re in a position where they can afford to move some draft picks and prospects for immediate help.

Mendes wondered if Senators GM Pierre Dorion might kick tires on pending restricted free agents with arbitration rights this summer who could prove difficult for their current clubs to re-sign. He brought up Vancouver’s Brock Boeser, Minnesota’s Kevin Fiala and Columbus’ Patrik Laine but it could take a massive contract to convince one of those players to invest in the rebuilding Senators’ long-term future.

As for the Senators’ pending UFAs, I think they’re willing to shop all but Forsberg and Paul. They’d like to re-sign those two though they could also hit the trade block if they intend to test the market this summer.


  1. Chychrun to Florida. Tippett Juolevi Acari or Vatrano and a first 2024 second 2023
    It’s a lot but the Forida D needs help to win the cup this year or next

    Defence will be at a premium. I would suggest pulling the trigger early

    • There are lots of D becoming UFAs on teams not making the playoffs, including all teams 80. Trade for one on a non playoff team instead, much cheaper due to surplus.

    • Hi SS

      Panthers already a very good team; IMHO giving up 3 or 4 assets (due to bidding war) to get Chychrun is overkill

      Soucy at a much lower cap; will come at a far lower trade price; and Soucy easily fits in top 4 …

      Ekblad, Weegar , Montour and Soucy…. That’s a pretty dang good top 4

      Soucy possibly may not have the long term outlook that Chychrun has; and is 3 1/2 years older than Chychrun …. But he is a bit bigger; is stronger; has performed better for sure than Chychrun this year (both on weak teams) and most importantly comes in $1.85 M (Cap) cheaper this year and next (Note: Panthers have $6.6 M in dead cap next year) AND possibly will cost somewhere in the range of half the value of assets needed to acquire Chychryn (bidding war)

      So… better performer this year (when Panthers are all in) for less Cap (definitely an issue next year) and less futures given up….IMHO…. a call (by Zito) to Francis, is in order

    • As a Coyote fan, I hope not!
      No reason to trade Chychrun except for an overpayment of sorts with a priority of a near future roster that GMBA can call his team, at least not until the draft.
      My prediction is no team will meet GMBA’s price and Chychrun stays a Coyote.

  2. JImmy Murphy needs to get a life where there is a modicum of common sense. That was wacky tobacco stuff.

    Depending on Price, where he wants to be (which may be Montreal ) or how he comes out of this year, Montreal should not consider a tune up but a rebuild.

    This year has done a lot of damage. Though the POH appears to be a real winner. I wonder the Montreal zietgist could handle a rebuild.

  3. Except for 2 of their UFAs (Paul & Forsberg) I think the Senators would quickly move any of them, but should Dorion get the feedback from the agents of those two that they wish to test the open market waters, they’d be 1 – 2, followed by C Chris Tierney in any interest from other clubs and, by extension, bring back the best returns.

    The rest would garner returns in diminishing order as follows ranging from not much to zilch, so they may as well hang onto

    Josh Brown,
    Tyler Ennis,
    Zach Sanford

    until season’s end

  4. If Montreal is serious about Chychrun, what is a legit offer? Sorry Drouin isn’t it. I would think Arizona wants more control not a ufa after one season.

    I would think Romanov has to be part of any package.

    Here is my Boston package: 1st, Lysell, Debrusk, Moore and Vaakanainen. Moore has to go to give up that much.

    there is 4 1st rounders in there; we can debate Debrusk all day but he is a 1st round pick and a former 20 goal scorer. think Sam Bennett

    • There is no way I trade Lysell he is the best prospect Boston has drafted since Pasta. I know he is still a prospect but he may be the best prospect they have.

    • No one can accuse you of a homer trade proposal Caper. You’re right that is a lot.

      I think I am in the minority with what the value of Chychrun is. IMO he is a 2nd pair guy until he proves he can be top pair on a good team.

      So maybe he is, maybe he isn’t, I dunno. Just don’t like the price tag for a maybe. Talent is there for sure, but is the hockey IQ/vision there? Really hard to tell at this point. Seems risky.

      • Agree Ray

        I too believe Chychrun has been over-hyped and ask is too much

        Yes certainly risky for assets (required in trade) currently being bandied about

      • Since it doesn’t really make sense for rebuilding Coyotes to trade Chycrun, this is probably why the reported ask is so high. If someone makes an offer they can’t refuse, then maybe he gets moved.

      • Hi Slick

        Very valid observation

      • Entirely possible Slick, but kind of weird to float his name out there and test the market for a 23 yr old player.
        Usually when you value a young player and plan on keeping him long term, you keep his tires pumped and moving forward with a positive attitude.
        Maybe he asked for a trade and just isn’t public?
        Or they don’t think he is a fit?

        Just kind of weird, as you don’t see this often.

    • Nice to see you posting caper.

      My question to you is, would you prioritize a D man over a second line centre (IE Giroux, pavalski, hertle)?

      If the Bruins send that package to AZ they really got nothing to trade for a F.

    • Hi Caper

      As a Leafs fan…. We’d love to see that 5 for 1 trade

      However, trying to be as unbiased as possible…. Trade is overkill; and Bruins should hang on to Lysell….. IMHO more/higher odds that he has a very good NHL future Vs a mediocre and/or poor NHL future

  5. A Chychrun Trade to Florida would be a great move to there young team, they need a young good d/man and they dont want to move him to the Western teams…

    The Trade
    A 1st & 2nd Picks and former 1st round pick Owen Tippiett and maybe a goaltending prospect Or a salary player they dont need/want ??

    • If. Florida offered. Tippett. 23 1st and 2nd. AZ. Would probably take it

    • Salary would have to go the other way if Florida does try to acquire Chychrun. Right now they have 6 RFA’s and 4 RFA’s this offseason and a projected available cap space of $4.5 million, which will turn to $5.5 if the NHL is able to increase the cap by the $1 million they previously mentioned. Chychrun has 3 more seasons of a cap hit of $4.6 million.

      • HiKevjam

        Bang on

        8 spots to fill with at best $5.5 M (if the Cap Hit increase DOES come through)…. That’s an average of $690 K and league min next year is $750 K….. in the word(s) of Homer Simpson…..” Doh!”

        Moving Horny (not a simple task)…. Then has them at best at $10.8 M to fill 9 spots…. getting JC ….. then only $6.2 M to fill 8; and they would have relinquished 4 futures to get the deal done

        Soucy the better option IMHO… with above (Horny moved) and Soucy in (instead of JC)….. more than $8 M available to fill 8 spots; and 2 less assets given up (JC acquisition vs Soucy acquisition)

        Panthers should NIT, IMHO, be considering getting in to the JC “sweepstakes”

      • Add to that, Huberdeau will be in last year of his deal

      • Completely forgot about that Slick…. Good point

  6. A Chychrun Trade to Florida would be a great move to there young team, they need a young good d/man and they dont want to move him to the Western teams…

    The Trade
    A 1st & 2nd Picks and former 1st round pick Owen Tippiett and maybe a goaltending prospect Or a salary player they dont need/want ??

    • Hi Willie W

      If Panthers are asked for that much (and if it turns in to a bidding war, they will be asked for that much)…. Then they should walk away from a Chychrun deal

      Already a very good team… 4 assets is a load to give up; and he is IMHO overrated quite a bit; and is not doing so well this year anyway

  7. Bruins won’t be trading Lysell. He is a keeper they probably won’t take Moore change that to Rielly and add Frederick or. Beecher. To replace Lysell

    • Beecher is another Zack Hamill no one is going to take that lemon. I think the best prospect and that includes Lysell is Mason Lohrei I’ve watched him in two games with Ohio State and he was the best player on the ice by a country mile.

      • Wow a Zack Hamill reference, went deep into the memory well on that one Rick.

        Beecher might still turn into a D first 3/4 C or no?
        Big guy who can skate, just not much in the skill department. Kuraly type guy?

  8. Kind of a comment out of left field but has anyone ever heard of the league starting to take into account the income tax of each individual state/province to truly level the Cap playing field? This would make sense to me since it seems to be such a big contributing factor for UFA’s and where they sign… If you’re gonna level the playing field for all franchises by having a cap then you should really level it with adjusting the cap ceiling depending on gov’t tax rates. Not sure if this is even possible and waaaaay too complicated…?

    • Hello swiss2793, this comes up all the time, and its not gonna happen. No more than the league will try and even out the cost of living index (think NYC vs. Columbus) between cities along the same thought line. Also while taxes are a factor, the team/player only benefits for home games, and have to pay taxes to city they visit.

  9. Beware any player that comes out of Arizona. Chances are it won’t work out.

  10. Nick Paul on Penguins please…. What’s the ask (acknowledging that Dorian more likely to re-up him)???

    • IF Paul and his agent make it clear to Dorion that they intend to test the UFA market and his availability at the trade deadline becomes known then be assured that there will be a number of teams calling. In that case, expect Pittsburgh to be among the last teams that Dorion would consider – unless the offer blows him out the water. So, in those circumstances, rather than “the ask” who/what do you seem them offering (NOT named Zucker)?

      • Is that cause of murray?

        With what I expect the market to be I see the fellow fetching a second if enough teams bid. Or a decent but not top three organizational prospect. With hextall I’d think the offer would be a third round pick.

      • Then he won’t get him. And no, my position isn’t because of Murray who, if you’ve been noticing, is doing quite well. Hopefully it lasts!

      • Not sure who else watched the Oilers lose in OT to the Sens before the break, but Paul was really good in that one.
        Constantly battling and stirring it up, scored, 5 shots on net, getting the tougher assignments and starting his shifts in his own end.

        Not sure if he plays like that all the time, but since he wears an A, guessing there is some consistency in that effort.

        Guy seems like a gamer. Sens should keep him, if they think the #’s are fair and he wants to stay.

      • I just see with how many sellers there are your bottom 6 depth players getting a lot back. And I’m curious about the Dorian would be hesitant to trade with Pittsburgh thing…. They arnt in division. Have a recent trade history. Why would that be a thing?

        And I’m glad for ott and Murray.

      • ChrismsI think they could get a B prospect or a 2nd for Paul, at least. Sound fair to you? If OTT thinks they will lose him as an RFA, might as well get something for him.
        He seems to check all the boxes for a “playoff” type of guy.
        Teams that need some grit, battle, PK minutes and D on their 3rd line as a shut down line.
        Need guys like that to win and he fits the bill.

      • Meant to say UFA

      • I did say a second was feasible. Depends on market and interest. But I approached the question as what would the pens give up. With hextall heading it up I don’t see more than a few tweaks for mid round picks or long shot prospects.

  11. Oh, and if it’s to be a prospect his name had better be Sam Poulin.

    • Hi George

      It for sure won’t be Poulin , Legere , or P-O J

      Burke has been firm on not giving up assets unless they help in the here and now AND in the future (so players with term)

      I read Burke’s stance to mean that Pens will not be parting with a 1st or 2nd (and probably a 3rd) in a deal to get a UFA (unless something negative exits Pens; or in case of an impact player)

      Why “In that case, expect Pittsburgh to be among the last teams that Dorion would consider”???? Pens have traded with Sens before; and there is a “new Sheriff “ (well two new Sheriffs) in town

      Of course I’d love for Zucker to go to Sens…. But we both know that this is not happening

      Pens top prospects not named Poulin, Legere or Joseph are Zohorna , O’Connor, and Nylander

      I can’t see Burke letting the big boy (Zoho) go in the deal; and they just did the AHL swap and got Wee Wilkie’s bro …. and he’s currently doing pretty well for WBS

      That leaves O’Connor (who is on LTIR)

      Dorian might think he can comfortably trade Paul and get assets then be able to re-sign him in July???

      My expectations would be HexBurkie asking Dorian what it would take…. Not HB offering something to set up the counter-proposal

      My thoughts are….

      HexBurkie… “what’s it going to take , and don’t even talk about Poulin, Joseph, or Poulin”

      Dorian …. “Nylander”

      HB…. “Are you taking Zucker in that deal?”

      Dorian …. “Tabernac….. Ok , how about Zohorna “

      HB …. . “Are you taking Zucker in that deal?”

      Dorian …. “Tabernac….. Ok , how about Paul and a 6th for Zohorna”

      HB….. “Paul and a 3rd for Zohorna”

      Dorian… “Never… and double Tabernac. How about O’Connor and a 4th for Paul”

      HB … “Final offer … O’Connor and a 7th for Paul”

      • “Not Poulin” is exactly why I said they’d be the last team he’d deal with when it comes to Paul, simply because none of those names you mentioned would be among their own top prospects if acquired. There’s a reason the Penguins have ranked near the bottom of the heap in any analysis of team prospects for the past while.

        A big body like Paul who can skate, is physical and play up and down the lineup at two positions without hurting you defensively and able to chip in with timely offense will attract attention from more than one team and is the type of player that will generate competition for his services – even more so from teams who think they can get his signature on a new deal. Even a non-playoff team such as Seattle could jump into the picture and be prepared to offer better than those Pittsburgh “prospects” you mention.

        And don’t think for a minute that Maguire won’t be deeply involved in assessing offers.

      • I love how Pittsburgh is only offering up garbage contracts for good players ,(the usual suspects , Zucker, Pettersson Ruhwedal ) but the minute you start talking about anything close to reality. It’s “hey now, let’s not get carried away here, Pittsburgh isn’t absolutely stealing this deal!”

        Pengy, when putting together trade proposals, you should probably think about the trade from both perspectives, not JUST Pittsburghs.

        Rebuilding teams aren’t looking to sell assets for Pittsburghs undesirables that are 30 years old, underperforming, overpaid etc.

      • I don’t think pengy speaks for Pittsburgh as a whole cap.

      • @Pengy

        Alex Nylander is on his third team since being drafted. He’s not getting anybody fired up in trade talks.

        I wonder if Dorion would listen to offers on Connor Brown? I was hoping the Leafs would keep him over Kapanen and Johnsson when they purged mid-priced wingers.

        I think you’re right about the Chychrun situation. There are better options at more reasonable asks than what ARZ is looking for.

      • Daryl, don’t hold your breath on Dorion trading Connor Brown. Back to the Leafs or anywhere else. He has another year to run after this at his current cap hit of $3.6 mil before becoming a UFA, by which time the kids like Norris, Batherson Stutzle, Brannstrom, Sanderson, Tkachuk, Formenton, Bernard-Docker, Zub,Thompson, Pinto will have that much more experience under their belts.

        From all reports, Brown loves playing for Smith and the city and wants to be among the veteran leaders, along with Chabot, Paul, Zaitsev, Holden, White, Murray and Forsberg. And Dorion and D. J. Smith absolutely love having around.

        He will get a decent contract offer renewal

      • Oh, and Pengy, what’s with the francophone stereotype and Dorion? The man is fluently bilingual. Denis Lemieux he is not.

      • Hi George

        Was just joking re Tabernac…. Knew he is bilingual…. Certainly not meant toffend

        If I have offended anybody here with that remark, I humbly apologize

        Unfortunately if Dorian won’t accept O’Connor and a little extra (late pick) for Paul…. Pens can’t deal

        Certainly not that they could use him…. I really like his play…. Iam only going on what Burke has repeated ….. he doesn’t want to give up futures unless it also helps at least next year

        I’d offer more…. But don’t see Burke doing it

        Paul a really nice add…. But Pens vital needs are (1) upgrade 3RD; and (2) pending on Domingue return, health and performance; a back-up upgrade. Once 1 & 2 are addressed…. Depth forwards can be looked at (unless they come free[nothing in trade] like E Staal or any UFA KHL players who don’t make playoffs )

        Would also love Paul as a Leaf… less likely trade there

        Hi Daryl

        Agree…. But he (Nylander) is exactly a player they should keep… reasonable contract and already below the line (not counting against cap)

        They (Pens) won the deal; and he (Nylander) is doing well in WBS…. so he is a viable call up if there are injuries

        Re Connor Brown… agree …. Good value at mid 6 winger that can play both wings…. Don’t see Dorian looking to move him

        Re Paul…. Dorian SHOULD re-up him…. But if a deal can’t be made and/or if he/his agent are gearing up for UFA season…. Dorian needs to move him to get at least something…. Yes there should be a handful of teams interested…..who? How much?

        3rd line wingers (with the ability to jump to 2nd line in a pinch); with his size and skills…..George….so what IS the reasonable ask by Dorian ?

        Krakken would be absolutely crazy to trade for him as they have a free shot at him at UFA….. they couldn’t possibly know that he would re-up with them w/o tampering …. Would be a big gamble and they’d have to win the bidding war to take that risk

      • A team like Seattle would be crazy to give up anything substantail for someone like Nick Paul as a pure rental – but not if Dorion gave them permission to talk to he and his agent beforehand to see if they’d be willing to re-up for $x over Y years after being acquired, Been done before – Dougie Hamilton comes to mind.

  12. And just to add – both O’Connor and Zahorna are LWingers where they have Tkachuk, Formenton and, if the C position is fleshed out in days ahead by Norris, Pinto, White and Bishop, perhaps Stutzle back there eventually, with system LW prospects Roby Jarventie, Ridley Greig and Egor Sokolov. How mich better – if at all – are Zahorna and O’Connor over them? Nylander you can keep, thanks.

    • Hi George

      Both O’Connor and Zoho shoot left

      Correct re O’Connor being predominantly LW

      Zoho however plays both and has of late been playing more RW than LW

      As I said…. Nylander should be kept

      Asking again…. What IS a reasonable ask for Paul?

      • “ Asking again…. What IS a reasonable ask for Paul?”

        He already did, didn’t he?

        Just didn’t give you the answer you want, which is Desmith, Zucker, Pettersson or Ruhwedal.