NHL Rumor Mill – March 12, 2022

by | Mar 12, 2022 | Rumors | 39 comments

The latest on Hampus Lindholm, Josh Manson, Rickard Rakell, Marc-Andre Fleury, Dominik Kubalik, Max Domi and Joel Armia plus updates on the Blues and Senators in today’s NHL rumor mill.


THE ORANGE COUNTY REGISTER: Elliott Teaford reports scuttlebutt around the league suggests defensemen Hampus Lindholm and Josh Manson and winger Rickard Rakell won’t get long-term contract extension offers from the Anaheim Ducks. Pat Verbeek, their new general manager, is said to favor three- or four-year extension offers (or possibly shorter) rather than six- to eight years deals.

Anaheim Ducks defenseman Hampus Lindholm (NHL Images).

Verbeek’s priority is believed to be signing Lindholm. He’s the only one of those three pending unrestricted free agents the Ducks GM mentioned by name during a recent meeting with season-ticket holders.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Verbeek will have to make the money worth their while if he hopes to get those three to sign deals that are at most four years in length. Otherwise, he should start peddling those three now because I doubt they’ll take less than market value cap-wise on short-term deals to stay in Anaheim.

The annual average value of Lindholm’s current contract is $5.205 million but he’s earning $6.75 million in actual salary. He could seek at least $7 million annually on his next contract.


CHICAGO SUN-TIMES: Ben Pope reports Blackhawks goaltender Marc-Andre Fleury hopes to avoid this summer’s free-agent market by re-signing with the Hawks or inking an extension with whichever club might acquire him at the trade deadline. Pope also reported the Ducks and Edmonton Oilers have been linked to Blackhawks winger Dominik Kubalik.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Fleury is an unrestricted free agent this summer. He could be amenable to a one-year contract but could seek something not too far below his current annual average value of $7 million.

Kubalik is a restricted free agent with arbitration rights who’s a year away from UFA eligibility. He’s earning an annual average value of $3.7 million while his actual salary this season is $4 million. Maybe the Ducks are eyeing the 26-year-old winger as a possible replacement for Rakell.


TSN: Darren Dreger reports there’s a higher level of interest in the trade market for Max Domi. The Columbus Blue Jackets winger has elevated his play in recent games. Dreger noted Domi may not be among the top tier of players in the trade market but he’s not that far below.

MONTREAL HOCKEY NOW: Marco D’Amico also cited Dreger reporting the Canadiens have fielded some calls about forward Joel Armia based on his playoff performance over the past two seasons. D’Amico points out Armia has three more seasons left on his contract with an annual average value of $3.4 million, suggesting the Canadiens might have to retain some salary to move him or take back a contract in return.


THE ATHLETIC: Jeremy Rutherford weighed in on some of the recent trade speculations regarding the St. Louis Blues. One source said they’re no longer involved in talks with the Seattle Kraken regarding Mark Giordano while Arizona Coyotes defenseman Jakob Chychrun isn’t the blueliner they’re focused on as they seek a shutdown rearguard.

The Blues remain interested in the Montreal Canadiens’ Ben Chiarot and the Seattle Kraken’s Carson Soucy. They’re also seeking a fourth-line penalty-killing forward.

Rutherford acknowledged the trade speculation linking the Blues to Philadelphia Flyers captain Claude Giroux. While not ruling it out, he considers the addition of Giroux a long shot citing his contract and the Blues’ depth at forward.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: The Blues are also bumping up against the $81.5 million salary cap. It will take some creativity to acquire Chiarot or Soucy even though they carry affordable cap hits. It could take a three-team deal to bring Giroux to St. Louis.

OTTAWA SUN: Bruce Garrioch reports Senators GM Pierre Dorion is ready to deal but things are quiet right now in the trade market. He’s willing to move defensemen Michael Del Zotto and Josh Brown and forwards Chris Tierney and Zach Sanford.

Teams are expressing interest in pending UFA forward Nick Paul and goaltender Anton Forsberg. However, the Senators are focused on keeping them.


  1. Sidney Crosby for Carson Soucy … whoever this Pengy guy is will be happy.

    • Zadina for Soucy + a 6th

    • Better yet:
      Soucy + Donato for Zadina + Avs 4th

  2. MAF goes to Trono, because he will shine with all that media attention! (cringe)

  3. Max Domi seems to be falling into that category where some think he still has value because, well, he was a 1st round pick, you know!

    Except for those seasons in Montreal where he produced like a 1st rounder primarily because of his linemates, the guy seems to have settled in to become a 4th liner – not someone you’d want to give up assets for to bolster your scoring – and coming off a $5.3 mil cap hit and a UFA at season’s end.

    • @ George O

      In complete agreement about Domi. He seems to me a selfish player that plays for the name on the back not the crest on the front.

      What are your thoughts about the OTT players mentioned? Good depth pieces for sure but what’s the trade value for Tierney or Sanford?

      As you mentioned yesterday OTT is pretty set at C and D for the future…where do they need some upgrades?

      • Daryl, of the 4 Ottawa players mentioned I think 27 y/o LW Zach Sanford might draw the most attention since he’s a big one at 6’4″ 206 lbs and plays with a bit of an edge – certainly doesn’t back down. Playing limited 3rd/4th line minutes he still has managed 9g 8a 17 pts in 57gp. He’s a UFA at season’s end coming off a $2 mil cap hit – maybe draws a 4th rounder

        After him might be 27 y/o left-shooting C Chris Tierney, 6′ 1″ 191 lbs who has 6g 9a 15 pts in 51gp – currently on IR with an “upper body” injury classified as game to game – should be back soon. He, too, is a pending UFA coming off ab $3.5 mil cap hit. Anyone taking him will be doing so as pure 3rd/4th line C depth – the return would either be a secondary prospect or low (5th/6th round) pick – otherwise Dorion might just hold onto him for the balance.

        Strangely enough, even though RD Josh Brown is still with Ottawa, I think Del Zotto, currently with Belleville in the AHL, might draw more interest as a pure veteran depth addition. The 31 y/o shoots left has good size at 6″ 200 lbs, and in 24gp in the AHL has 10g 16a 26pts. He has one more year to go at $875,000. A 7th rounder would be the return

        Josh Brown – big as he is (6’5″ 217 lbs) – has struggled defensively since coming over from Florida, and doesn’t provide any offense to speak of. 28 y/o, he’s a UFA coming off a $1.2 mil cap hit. Anyone taking him would be for 5/6 depth pairing. But I don’t see it – he’ll likely play out the string in Ottawa

        As for Ottawa’s needs, it’s more production from the bottom 6 F, Their projected Top 6 has Norris centering Tkachuk and Batherson and Stutzle centering Formenton and Connor Brown. That’s a good combination for lines 1 & 2

        The 3rd line has Shane Pinto at C. LW could be Nick Paul IF they can re-sign him as a UFA. but with Sanford likely history they’ll need to find a RW with a bit of a 3rd line scoring touch – that might be Colin White who can play that position.

        The 4th line is a mix of “who, who and who” (Gambrell centering Kelly at LW and Watson at RW. Improvement there is paramount.

        A mock draft has Ottawa picking 8th and taking RW Daniel Yurov from Russia – but I highly doubt that will happen now. But whoever they pick it will be someone with promise at all 3 positions – best available, probably.

        They do have LW Ridley Greig, a feisty top pick with Brandon Wheat Kings where he has 26g 37a 63pts in 39gp, but he’s at least a year away with some AHL experience to be obtained.

      • Hi George

        DelZ (*with 50% retained) should get well more than a 7th

        *Re 50% retention…, I’ve posted twice before re the savings of 50% retained over (1) buyout and/or (2) keeping him (and to add insult to injury…. Paying him an NHL Sal to play n Belleville)

        50% retained in return for a 4th is not unreasonable IMO

        Acquiring team get him at annual Cap hit of $1M (inly $250 K over League min) for balance of this year and all next year

        If acquiring team next year feels pushed to bury him (if he clears) ….max showing as Cap …. $440 K (that’s if CBA requires buried Cap to be split per retained deal; if not…nothing showing )

        DelZ would be a great low cost (Cap, Cash, & in trade offered up) depth TDL aquisition

      • Pengy, sounds reasonable re Del Zotto – I think he goes somewhere regardless – but if someone offers a 4th for 50% retained I think Dorion jumps at that.

  4. Question for all you. How about Giroux for Klingberg straight up? Helps Philly for the future on D, and help Dallas put the puck in the net…. then both teams take their shot at resigning them in the off season?

    • Starsfan,
      I think that would be a very good deal for Philly.
      To even it out Philly would have to add another player or draft pick.

      • I disagree. Even value.

    • With the recent Mono diagnosis, I do not see Stars moving any D out, unless better D coming back in.

    • Klingberg + Kiviranta + 5th for Giroux (1/2 salary) + Braun

    • This is no longer an option with the Risto resigning yesterday. Philly has Ellis and Risto as their top 2 RD, no room from Klingberg. Giroux will get moved for picks.

  5. If Lindholm could be had I think one of if not the best pickups .
    I like Josh Bailey as a forward under the radar. Left unprotected in the expansion . Hold 1.5

    I see there are still people who honour their word. K.K signs for 8 at 4.2

    • That’s gonna chaff the Willy of those habs fans hoping he would drop on the canes like a bomb. Good mid risk high reward move.

    • SilverSeven – sounds like a fair deal on both ends. Would love to know what KK wanted from the Habs and what GMMB was offering.
      Chrisms – you’re right – worked out very well for the Canes. Most of the Hab fans I know, we’ve moved on – this disaster falls on GMMB from start to finish and he’s LA’s problem now.

  6. Sweeney’s swinging for the fences the bruins will no doubt end up with retreads.
    That’s Sweeney’s usual mo this time of the season. Don’t expect Hertl don’t expect Chychrun, expect Chara and probably someone like Karson Kuhlman. Yuck please fire this clown.

    • Rick I’ve told you 10 times Bruins need to stay the course a top 5 team in league can win with current roster. I’m not going to tell you again now wake up.

  7. I was a little late with this post yesterday so it didn’t get any replies. I hope a repost is ok.

    So why all of these comments that are constantly focused on the leafs and the teams in the east. And the in only team in the west is the avalanche. Hasn’t any one seen what Sutter has done in Calgary. Calgary has been out coaching, out playing and out shooting all of these “top teams”. This is an all in year for them no doubt as the cap crunch that has hit a lot of teams and resigning players is a reality. But where is the disconnect that the west is only one team deep. Flames have a deep roster. Too bad Monahan isn’t playing up to his old self. And just imagine if Bennett okayed the way he was playing the way he is playing now. They have cap room to make a move. They have a vezina caliber goalie. Johnny is having an MVP season. Lindholm should be considered a front runner for the selke.

    • Ash. It must be due to what is in news as most comments come from what is listed on site each day. I think Flames can beat anyone and built for playoff hockey Suter style

    • Ash, we get regular input from FlamesFan – keep posting, the more the merrier. Ron Jull pops in now and then on the Canucks and Ray Bark submits on the Oilers.

      The Avs, Jets and Blues also have regular contributors – but would love to see more regulars on teams like the Wild, Seattle, Arizona, Dallas, Nashville, Florida, Carolina etc.

      The Flames are a team to be taken seriously, built and coached as they are for playoff hockey, and with Gaudreau having a resurgence they could go deep. I know that any team winding up facing them in Round 1 will be wishing they had someone else as opponents.

      As for the Leafs being dominant in topic – that, I’m afraid, goes with the dominant media covering them … and the fact that, wherever the hell they play across Canada there are always significant numbers of Leafs fans in attendance – even in Montreal over the past couple of decades. But I remember when anyone wearing a Leafs jersey showing up in the old Forum was literally taking his life in his hands. Big changes in the approach of the fan base from the “old days” – believe me.

      • Tip of the cap to caper for his peg posts.

    • Hi Ash11

      Flames are the real deal

      Been playing great… stallwart between the pipes

      Flames v Avs in WCF would not come as a surprise

      Anything could happen re injuries (and suspensions ??); but as at now…. I’ve got a gut feeling Avs take West

      Per others above… Leafs centric posters are a product of (1) huge media presence (owned by 2 media giants ; and (2) being Canada’s largest (and North America’s 4th largest…. Only behind Mexico City, NY, LA) city by pop…. Mathematically there should be a disproportionate number of Leaf readers on this site; and likely disproportionate posters in this site

      Habs and Bruins are well represented here

      Posters here seem to be heavily numbered from the East based clubs

      Much fewer posters (at least that I’ve seen here) that reside in and/or cheer for; Western Conference teams/cities

      • 5th largest. You left out Chicago.

      • Toronto officially surpassed Chicago in pop a few years ago

      • In 2013 (had to look it up) Toronto surpassed Chicago in pop

        I thought it was only 4 or 5 years ago….9, wow, time flies

    • I got Flames vs Bruins in the finals.

  8. Breaking news.

    Sweeney fired. By Bruins. And replaced by
    Rick W Murray. This is based on his skills of getting the players to Boston on great deals who can ever forget

    Jack Eichel to bruins book it 🥸

    • I bet you yell “FIRE!” in crowded indoor places too.

      • Johnny Z. With last 2 years of Covid there has not been any crowded indoor places.

        Enjoy the weekend

      • Nice

  9. Thank Mr Bruin. Intend to agree. I suppose me being local to this team I would see more press and game coverage then other markets. I would still like to hear others opinions. Flames could still make big moves come the deadline. I think their highest need is at Center for the 3 or 4 line.

    • Flames may add extra depth but if they stay healthy I pick them to upset Avs in west

    • Ash
      Treliving is always active on deadline day. Unfortunately he is infatuated with defensemen. Normally trades for depth defensemen and gives up draft picks then never resigns them, drives me crazy.
      Personally I think we have enough depth at defense and I am in agreement could use a center for the 3 or 4th line.
      The only problem he would have to over pay so I hope he just stands pat and hangs on to our draft picks (the few that we have)
      Treliving s big move was getting Toffoli which has worked out very well.
      This team has a good chance to go far

      Wouldn’t that be something if the Flames and leafs play for the Cup!

  10. @ George O

    Again, thanks for your thoughtful reply.

    I do like your assessment of both Sanford and Tierney. I think Sanford would be a great playoff pick up for a lot of teams and would be a good fit on LW with the Leafs. As you mentioned at 6’4” he’s exactly what they’re missing in terms of size and grit. Wonder how he would fare at 2LW with Tavares and Nylander?

    Would a straight swap of Sanford for Engvall work? Engvall is a big C/LW that would be an ideal 3rd/4th line player for OTT. He’s a RFA so could be a good replacement for Sanford at a bit lower salary…say 2@$1.5M per season? TOR could add a 2023 4th round pick for OTT to retain salary so they even out?

    Tierney would be good depth at C but think his salary might be a bit cumbersome for a team to use him on 3rd/4th line or a Black Ace type player. Not sure how willing OTT is on retaining salary.

    I’m surprised at the delay in signing Nick Paul. Is it term or salary that’s holding things up?

  11. Could be a combination of both on Paul – then again (and I’m sure Dorion has already held preliminary discussions with his agent) perhaps they feel they might get a bit more and a longer term than Dorion is suggesting at the moment. We’ll see what happens down the stretch, and if his production increases (he’ll get lots of ice-time) the player/agent price could go up – if he doesn’t have an increase in production despite getting the ice-time, they might be more willing to take what Dorion is offering. No room for sentiment. It’s a business.

    Pure conjecture on who-for-who deals I tend to avoid because 99% of the time they stem from fantasy-league initiatives – so if Sanford is dealt for a specific individual it could be a wide range of candidates across all positions.

    Tierney, I’m still convinced, is headed for Minnesota as their scouts and Ottawa’s scouts have been seen at games of both teams – in fact, Dorion and Guerin were in attendance at a couple. For Minny, that would be pure depth interest at C, with most of his cap hit already paid out.

  12. I personally love the flames, i still think they are one or maybe 2-3 player away from the cup( 2 def + 1 centermen)

    claude giroux vs klinberg is dumb giroux cost more.. and older

    if i was the flames id go back to chariot or bring back gio

    giroux with the pants wow.. i think panters end up getting hampus lindolm + a guys like lekohnen