NHL Rumor Mill – March 1, 2022

by | Mar 1, 2022 | News, NHL | 40 comments

The latest on the Ducks’ efforts to re-sign three key free agents plus updates on the Canucks and Flyers in today’s NHL Rumor Mill.


THE ATHLETIC: Pierre LeBrun reports Anaheim Ducks new general manager Pat Verbeek intends to sign Hampus Lindholm, Josh Manson and Rickard Rakell to new contracts or he will move them before the March 21 trade deadline.

Anaheim Ducks defenseman Hampus Lindholm (NHL Images).

At the end of the day, there’s no guarantee I can get those three free agents back,” said Verbeek. “I’m going to attempt to sign them, if it doesn’t happen, I can’t just let them walk out the door free.”

Verbeek has reportedly started contract talks with Lindholm last week. There’s no word of discussions yet with Manson or Rakell.

LeBrun’s colleague Eric Stephens considers Lindholm a player the Ducks would prefer not to move but might have to if they can’t get him signed to an extension. He believes they’re willing to listen on Manson and Rakell. Stephens also suggested Max Comtois might benefit from a change of scenery.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: It’ll be interesting to see how this all shakes out. Lindholm would draw the most interest in the trade market. Former GM Bob Murray listened to offers on Rakell last season but ultimately retained him. Manson remains week-to-week with an injured finger and might not be back before the trade deadline.


CHEK TV: Appearing on the “Donnie and Dhali” show on Monday, Sportsnet’s Elliotte Friedman said the Vancouver Canucks have thrown almost every player’s name out there except for Elias Pettersson, Quinn Hughes, and Thatcher Demko to gauge their worth if they became available. However, they’re still in the playoff chase and don’t have to make any decisions by the trade deadline with players like J.T. Miller under contract for next season and Brock Boeser a restricted free agent this summer.

NEW YORK POST: Larry Brooks reports the Rangers got a good look at Miller during their 5-2 loss to the Canucks on Sunday with Miller setting up the Canucks’ first two goals. Brooks believes he’d be a great fit on the Rangers but the asking price and the lack of pressure on the Canucks to trade him would make Miller an expensive acquisition for the Blueshirts.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Canucks management could be more willing to entertain offers for players such as Miller if they tumble out of contention over the next three weeks leading up to March 21. Nevertheless, they can afford to wait until the offseason if they don’t get any offers to their liking.


BOSTON HOCKEY NOW: Jimmy Murphy recently cited Sportsnet’s Elliotte Friedman speculating Rasmus Ristolainen could get moved. The 27-year-old Philadelphia Flyers defenseman has never played in the postseason in his NHL career and Friedman thinks his physical style is best-suited to playoff hockey. Murphy wonders if Ristolainen would be a good fit with the Bruins, citing rumors claiming general manager Don Sweeney was interested in the blueliner before he was traded to the Flyers by the Buffalo Sabres.

THE PHILADELPHIA INQUIRER: Olivia Reiner reports oft-injured Flyers forward Derick Brassard could become a trade chip if he can stay healthy leading up to the trade deadline.


  1. What would it take to trade Comtois to mtl? I like the kid ink the Q … Speed and intelligence … Curious.

    • likley a lot Fred , perhaps something like Poehling and a 2nd. He is having an off year stat wise ( keep in mind that he had surgery on his hand ) but he has all the makings of a power forward. Fans in Anaheim like him , I see his name come up in trade proposals on other sites and they quickly get shot down by Ducks fans.

      • @Fergy22

        Poehling is not going to move the needle in any trade. He’s 23, drafted in 2017 and played 67 total NHL games scoring 16 points.

        He’s a 1st round bust.

  2. THE ATHLETIC: Pierre LeBrun reports Anaheim Ducks new general manager Pat Verbeek intends to sign Hampus Lindholm, Josh Manson and Rickard Rakell to new contracts or he will move them before the March 21 trade deadline

    How Pierre managed to hustle Pat Verbeek for that info is beyond me.

    • Hahaha

    • Verbeek said that much to the press: “I think going into this, I’m looking at it like we could make the playoffs, we could miss the playoffs. At the end of the day, there’s no guarantee I can get those three free agents back. I’m going to attempt to sign them, if it doesn’t happen, I just can’t let them walk out the door free.” direct quote

    • That is putting pressure on players and agents! Very good negotiation tactics!

  3. I know Dubas gets a lot of heat for different things but some of his moves have been very good. Here is my list of A+ moves:

    1- trading for Jack Campbell
    2- signing Reilly to max term under market value
    3- trading for Jake Muzzin
    4- signing T.J. Brodie
    5- refusing to part with William Nylander
    6- signing Kampf and Case for bargain contracts. They have been nothing short of incredible, bringing stability, work ethic and leadership by example.
    7- signing Jason Spezza and recognizing what a class act he is.
    8- firing Mike Babcock and his narrow minded coaching style.
    9- signing Michael Bunting
    10- trading for Ilya Lyubushkin and coming to realization that you need players like this to succeed deep in the playoffs.

    Having said this, here are my recommendations for whatever their worth (as a king suffering Lead fan that would like to see a Stanley Cup before I die):

    1- trade for Matt Martin
    2- package Kerfoot, Mrazek, Holl, Simmonds and Dermott salaries out the door between now and next year for salary cap space and replace with tougher, cheaper alternatives
    3- T.J. Miller for Kerfoot, Abruzzese, Dermott and 2nd round draft 2023. Is that enough?

    • Won’t be enough to get Miller from Van It would start with a 1st. A good young player and top prospect minimum. Probably more

    • Welcome back, Frank, nice balanced post.

    • No way that is enough. Starting point would be grade A RD prospect and a first. My guess is they would want at least a good prospect as well

    • Typical Leaf Fan…Rutherford’s in Vancouver with Bruce and a wack of new front office talent. Management aren’t trading Miller for a bag of pucks.

      Leafs should go after Fleury after letting Andersen go…Carolina is just Chuckling. You did not want to pay Andersen, now you will have to pay Fleury $7 mil. : )

      • Typical. A guy who says a lot about something he knows so little about. How refreshing. Sign Fleury because they let Anderson walk because while in Toronto everyone was saying sign him to the max right? No one was talking about trading him.

        Just like how what are the Leafs to do to when they need to resign Campbell the way he’s been playing. People were saying it would be north of $6m. Can you believe it? It’s usually the same people.

  4. Frank, and all those good moves have amounted to ZERO playoff round wins.

    I bet MLSE is salivating at the mouth to hand Dubas another contract

  5. Frank- If Doobie had balls, he should attempt these moves in order to go deep, save cap space for next year(because with this team, he might not get fired) mind you,..draft picks are slim but this is a win now window. 🙂

    Leafs trade march 16th
    Kerfoot 3.5M
    Holmberg .827K
    Woll .750K
    2022 1st
    2023 2nd
    = 5.077M

    To Vancouver for:
    Miller 5.25M
    Halak 1.5M

    The reason for the (march 17) trade is because that is when we would get the most savings for a LTIR Muzzin contract.

    * also just because “dubas” says he won’t trade a player i.e. Knies..doesn’t mean he won’t. Maybe he is bragging him up in a sense to get a little more for a little less.

    Leafs trade
    Nylander 6.96M
    Mrazek 3.5M
    2022 2nd
    2023 1st

    To Chicago for
    Fleury 7M
    Hagel 1.5M

    Leafs trade
    Campbell -1.65M
    Dermott – 1.5M
    Liljegren -.863K
    Engvall -1.25M

    to NYI for
    Mayfield -1.45M
    Chara – .750K
    Parise -.750K
    Martin -1.5M (retained @50%)=.750K

    New Look

    Bunting – Matthews -Marner
    Miller – JT – Hagel
    Parise – Kampf – Kase
    Martin – Spezza – Simmonds

    Rielly – Brodie
    Sandin/ Muzzin – Mayfeild
    Chara/ Lybushkin


    • Chi would jump on that trade. Not sure about the others

      • Mr Bruin. I thought so too (chicago trade) and would maybe have to offer Lou a draft pick in order to make a trade like that happen (to really shore up our D0 and add some grit and scoring for our forwards. I think the Vancouver offer is at the very least something that Vancouver would consider and it should at least be pretty competitve offer wise if they ever were thinking about unloading Miller.

    • @ DJ

      The trade proposal for Fleury and Hagel is terrible.

      Hagel is having a decent year but definitely not on par with Nylander. MAF is a UFA at end of season. His numbers are close to Campbell so what’s the upgrade?

      Getting Mayfield out of NYI would be a good plan but Chara and Parise’s best years are behind them. Leafs already have a Martin type in Wayne Simmonds…Leafs don’t need two fourth liners like that.

      I like the VAN proposal except for Knies…switch him with Abruzzese and I like it better.

      Leafs need help on the back end before a forward.

      • Shhhh this is stupid funny. Please don’t reason.

    • There’s some value in that Miller package but it doesn’t seem like a great fit for the Canucks. Vancouver’s biggest need is RD and it needs both prospects and young players at that position.

      Vancouver’s ask for J.T. Miller would be a 1st (2022 or 2023), high-end RD player or prospect, and one other piece (preferably speedy defensive winger or right-handed defensive centre).

    • Vanouver trade might work if they value Knies as a grade A prospect. Problem for Vancouver they need a RD

      • @ Kent Nilsson

        Not sure how they wouldn’t view Knies as a grade A prospect? He just played on the US Olympic team. He’s 6’3” tall (C/LW) and is a point per game player with the University of Minnesota.

        If they were truly after Miller I’d say that a package of a 2022 1st pick, Liljegren, and Robertson might get the conversation started?

        If the Leafs are going to offer Knies in a trade I wonder if ARZ would trade him straight up for Crouse or as part of a package for Chychrun and Crouse? Knies is from AZ

    • Why would the Isles want this collection of spare parts? None of these guys would actually play.

  6. How about nylander, liligren, mazarek, 2nd round pick for lindholm, Gibson and rackell

    • 😳

    • That deal would probably get Verbeek fired.

  7. Regarding Rangers…

    Me thinks Canucks are holding out for RD Schneider or Lafreniere.

    Dont think they have any interest in Chytil, Lundquist, Kakko or Kravtsov unless they are add-ons. If they had, me thinks a deals wouldve been done already.

    Perhaps adding Schenn and his 2 Cups worth of locker room experience could also entice Rangers as he’s been great all year and like Miller still has another year on a great contract.

    Top 10 scorer in the league aint coming cheap folks

    • @tyler
      I think Laf is 100% off the table unless the deal includes similar aged center who can be controlled for some time. and even then Laf is just starting to showup

      And yes I do think Schneider is being asked for when GMs pickup Drurys call. Even if Nils L has a better career they love a kid that skates and hits like Schneider more

    • I think the Canucks would prefer Schneider but also be okay with Lundqvist if the rest of the package made sense.

  8. Wow, so now Toronto is trading a bunch of terrible contracts throwing in 1st and 2nd round picks to rebuild half their roster at the TDL? Yikes…….then we have another comment about comparing MAF and Campbell? Besides Seth Jones, who is playing in front of MAF?
    The Blackhawks defense, might be the worst defense in the NHL.

    • Hey Brian, Based on the comments on this site, I thought the Leafs defence was the worst in the NHL…

    • @Brian

      The Hawks also have DeHaan and Murphy playing D in front of Fleury. While not All-Stars they are capable NHL defencemen.

      Fleury is an aging goalie that has caché for what he was, not what he is…which is why VGK got Lehner.

      His numbers this year are not better than Campbell’s.

  9. Great defensive work by Matthews, stopping the puck from crossing the goal line, last night!

    • He’s really committed himself to being a true 200′ player. Can’t wait for him to play for the Bruins during his prime years. The kid is an absolute beast.

  10. Ristolainen Would be a nice add for the Bruins they can also bring in a LD and a tough banger for the wing

    M Martin
    Carson Soucy

    • Hey I agree I’d rather Chychrun, or Klingberg, but Risto would be an excellent addition the bruins are on a good run but in order to compete with teams like Car. Floria or the AV’s they need more. As well as second line centre & from what I’m seeing from Jt I’m actually liking him better than Hertl now, he’s got a rougher edge.

      • Bruins have split so far with Florida. Bested AVS soundly without 63. Only problem looks like canes. But took them out last 2 years in a row come playoffs. Bruins will not be an easy out to anyone if healthy

      • They will be a tough out MrB4.
        When you dig into the #’s, they have the second best expected goals for % after Calgary. Which is basically more scoring chances and quality chances vs what they give up of the same.

        Where they lag behind the elite teams TB, FLA, AVS, CGY, CAR is shooting % and save %. In particular high danger save %.

        Swayman, if he can stay hot through the playoffs, takes care of one area of that equation.

        Shooting % is lower than it has been over the years, so maybe a natural uptick and back to the mean. But wasn’t great last year either.

        They still defend really well and are getting some saves recently. So I would pursue some goals if I am Sweeney, and a banger on the back end that can play 4,5,6 depending on the opponent for when things get heated.

        They’re playing B’s hockey though, so got a chance.

  11. Wow, some fan proposed trades for the Leafs that I scratch my head over, and I have been a Leaf fan for decades.
    J.T.Miller? Excellent player, but earns too much combined with the cost to obtain him to be realistic for Toronto. I can’t see how he would fit in next year in the salary system in Toronto, and there is always the concern that his next contract, he wants to return to the states.
    Dubas will look for bargains, or guys who will likely sign long term for cheap.
    A young guy on the way up, or a vet who has lost a step but makes up for that with skill or leadership.
    If I am betting, the Leafs trade a non-roster asset for another top 4 dman. That would be it.
    They have a ton of good forwards on the fringe or in the AHL, but they don’t have an extra player who can drive a line or make a key hit. Another Hyman another Bunting, but maybe more size and grit?
    We’ll see what they do but I suspect an experienced dman with size, mobility and playoff experience is going to be the main goal. With Muzzin getting hurt so regularly they need a guy who brings the same qualities in a healthier body.

    • @Doktordave

      Well said.

      Very well said.

      I can see Dubas trying to upgrade on D with a guy like Soucy from SEA or Mayfield from NYI. A versatile forward that can play all three forward positions like Jarnkrok from SEA or a LW/C like Copp from WPG.

      Can never have too much depth on D or at C in the playoffs.