NHL Rumor Mill – March 5, 2022
What moves could the Leafs, Avalanche, Red Wings and Oilers make before the trade deadline? Check out the latest in today’s NHL rumor mill.
SPORTSNET: Luke Fox reports Toronto Maple Leafs general manager Kyle Dubas has made adding a defenseman his priority before the March 21 trade deadline. What type of blueliner and how much he’ll cost will depend upon the healthy of sidelined rearguard Jake Muzzin, whose $5.625 million cap hit is currently on long-term injury reserve. If Muzzin is out for the regular season with concussion symptoms, one imagines Dubas will seek a comparable left-shot defenseman.
TORONTO STAR: Mark Zwolinski examined what Dubas could part with to bolster his roster before the trade deadline. The Leafs GM isn’t afraid to trade draft picks and he’s got his first-, second-and seventh-round picks in this year’s draft. He might be willing to part with his first-rounder for a defenseman like Dallas’ John Klingberg, Arizona’s Jakob Chychrun or Anaheim’s Hampus Lindholm.
Other trade chips could include a defenseman such as Justin Holl, Rasmus Sandin, Timothy Liljegren or Travis Dermott. Pending restricted free agent forward Pierre Engvall is another possibility. Minor leaguers Joshua Ho-Sang and Alex Steeves and prospects Matt Knies, Nick Abruzzese and Topi Niemela could interest other clubs.
SPECTOR’S NOTE: Dubas has shown a willingness in the recent past to swing big deals with seemingly limited cap room. I don’t dismiss the possibility of him pulling another rabbit out of his hat again.
I wouldn’t expect to see Klingberg, Chychrun or Lindholm joining the Leafs by deadline day. The Stars aren’t sellers as they’re battling for a Western Conference wild-card berth. The Coyotes’ asking price for Chychrun is likely too expensive for the Leafs while the Ducks are reportedly trying to re-sign Lindholm.
Some Leafs followers believe Dubas needs to improve his goaltending. That’s as maybe but the reality is there aren’t many quality goalies available that would be an improvement over the current tandem of Jack Campbell and Petr Mrazek. Marc-Andre Fleury seems to be leaning toward finishing the season with the Chicago Blackhawks while there’s no indication the New York Islanders are shopping Semyon Varlamov. The rest of them are career backups or past-their-prime starters.
THE DENVER POST: Mark Chambers lists Philadelphia Flyers captain Claude Giroux, San Jose Sharks center Tomas Hertl, Dallas Stars forward Joe Pavelski, Vancouver Canucks center J.T. Miller and Buffalo Sabres defenseman Colin Miller as five potential trade targets for the Colorado Avalanche.
THE ATHLETIC: Peter Baugh and Scott Wheeler list prospect defenseman Justin Barron, the Avalanche’s 2023 first-round pick and prospect forward Oskar Olausson among the potential trade chips general manager Joe Sakic could dangle. Others include defenseman Sean Behrens and their 2023 second-rounder.
SPECTOR’S NOTE: Giroux is the main guy the Avs have been linked to in the rumor mill. Everything depends on whether he’ll waive his no-movement clause to go to Colorado. The Flyers will likely seek a first-rounder, a top prospect and a young player in return.
Hertl could also be an option though he and the Sharks are reportedly engaged in contract extension talks. The Stars are in the thick of the Western wild-card chase so they’re not shopping Pavelski, who’d like to stay in Dallas after this season.
The Canucks aren’t parting with Miller unless someone makes a substantial offer that involves young NHL players. Colin Miller, on the other hand, would be an affordable pickup for the Avs once he returns from his undisclosed injury.
DAILY FACEOFF: Frank Seravalli added Detroit Red Wings forward Filip Zadina to his list of trade targets at No. 12. He said Wings GM Steve Yzerman hasn’t tipped his hand but there’s a sense around the league that the 22-year-old winger could benefit from a change of scenery.
DETROIT HOCKEY NOW: Kevin Allen wonders if there will be much of a trade market for Wings backup Thomas Greiss. Washington Capitals GM Brian MacLellan doesn’t seem to like his choices in the trade market. Darcy Kuemper’s improved play takes the Colorado Avalanche out of the goalie market. The Edmonton Oilers, Boston Bruins and Minnesota Wild could be interested in Marc-Andre Fleury but some believe he wants to finish this season with the Blackhawks.
SPECTOR’S NOTE: The sixth-overall pick in 2018, Zadina hasn’t blossomed into the scorer he was projected to become. He’s still young enough to get his career back on track and reach his full potential, which could prove enticing to clubs looking for promising scorers.
EDMONTON JOURNAL: Jim Matheson reports the Oilers are seeking a dollar-in, dollar-out trade and seek a veteran, big right-shot rental defenseman. He pointed out Oilers winger Josh Archibald is slated to become an unrestricted free agent this summer, suggesting shopping him and his $1.5 million cap hit to an American team.
Archibald has resumed skating with the Oilers after his COVID-related heart-muscle condition cleared up. He also remains unvaccinated, making it difficult for the Oilers to keep him due to Canada-US border restrictions. Matheson acknowledged that could also make American clubs leery of acquiring Archibald.
Friedman on TJMS says if there’s a chance some of Vegas’ injured players won’t be back before the end of the regular season he wonders if they’ll add, missing the playoffs is not an option there.
— NHL Watcher (@NHL_Watcher) March 4, 2022
One recurring theme from talking to a dozen or so NHL front-offices sources over last few days, the buyers keep telling the sellers they need more time (for cap reasons mostly, 16 teams in LTIR). Sellers are getting a bit antsy, they want to get it going… — Pierre LeBrun (@PierreVLeBrun) March 4, 2022
I wonder what the asking price is for Zadina, don’t get to see too many Det games, anyone hazzard a guess?
redmonsters, the fact he was taken 6th overall in 2018 will be over-shadowed by his so-so production for Detroit (where ice-time couldn’t have been an issue) over 139 games played – 22g 32a 54 pts which, over an 82-game schedule, averages out to 13g 19a 32 pts.
So far this year, over 53gp, he’s scored 7 goals 10 assists for 17 pts – wiped out statistically-speaking by a glaring -20.
An RFA (no arbitration rights) coming off a cap hit of $894,167, he shouldn’t cost much to re-up – whether in Detroit or somewhere else – so, unless the Red Wing brain-trust foresees a sudden turnaround in production in the not-too-distant future, anything they could expect in a trade would be no better than a 3rd or lower draft pick and/or a modest prospect.
Maybe the Detroit fans can kick in with how they see it.
Ther seems to be no consensus in Detroit about what to do with Zadina. Some have already given up on him, others have not. He often looks like he is unsure of where to go, or how best to fill in and be responsible at both ends of the ice. But you can say that same thing about most of the Wings. Some, like myself, wonder if some of Detroit’s issues stem from a lack of sophisticated systems. We too often look confused at both ends of the ice, Zadina included. I think that Zadina would benefit from different coaching, either here or elsewhere. Yesterday’s game against TB was a prime example of the difference between the two teams. Obviously, Tampa is more talented throughout the lineup, but you could see multiple offensive plays that the Bolts employed to generate high quality chances, including the game winning PP goal. You just don’t see any evidence of such organized systems in our players. Anyway, it’s tough for me to place a values on Zadina and others under those circumstances.
Iago, that # 6 slot has been a real mix of hit-and-miss since 2000.
The best to come out of that slot up to now have been Matthew Tkachuk (2016), Sean Monahan (2013), Hampus Lindholm (2012), Mika Zibanejad (2011), Oliver Ekman-Larsson (2009),Mikko Kopivu (2001), Moritz Seider (so far anyway – 2019), Jamie Drysdale (so far anyway – 2020)
The following are what could best be described as OK considering where they were taken: Pavel Zacha (2015), Sam Gagner (2007), Derrick Brassard (2006). Milan Michalek (2003), Scottie Upshall (2002). Scott Hartnell (2000)
These can be filed under “I wish I had taken X”: Cody Glass (2017), Zadina (2018), Jake Virtanen (2014), Nikita (Filly Doesn’t Do Rebounds) Filatov (2008), Gilbert Brule (2005), Al Montoya (2004)
That works out to a 30% chance of the 6th pick being a dud or just OK (in relation to where he was taken), and 40% getting a solid contributor.
A few trade comparisons: Filatov dealt for a 3rd round pick; Virtanen – bought out; Brulé – dealt for Raffi Torres; Montoya – dealt with Marcel Hossa for Fredrik Sjostrom, David LeNeveau & Josh Gratton (all filled under “Who?”)
Actually, on sober second-thought, Hartnell should be moved into the first grouping, increasing that % to 45%. He had some pretty damned good numbers early on.
Thanks George and everyone. Some smart team should trade a third for him if possible, worth the risk
Edmonton offers up a pick/prospect and Holland gets his last 1st rounder from his Detroit days back. Probably one or both of the Michigan born players in Cooper Marody or Tyler Tullio and D-man Samarukov gets it done.
Actually, not to nit-pick or anything, but his last 1st rounder was Joe Velino, taken 30th overall, a C who doesn’t appear to be doing much better – 44gp 6g 4a 10pts, most of which has come this season with 5g 4a 9 pts in 39gp – to go along with a -5.
Side note regarding Zadina.
The consensus at the time was that Zadina should be pick #3 in the draft and a large % of the Montreal fan base was upset about Kotkaniemi being picked instead of Zadina.
Interesting that neither of the two have met projected expectations.
The Habs received a good return from KK, whereas Zadina would be very lucky to get a 2nd….
I was hoping that he be traded for a LD with term such as Soucy or Siegenthaler even. Detroit’s LD prospects might not be ready by next season.
Ha ha Toronto Star would suggest using the unsigned on AHL only deal Ho Sang in a trade. Or the team who want Ho Sang COULD just give him a contract
Bill just looked at a player like Guy Carbonneau scored 72 goals in 72 games in the Q
Wasn’t that prolific goal scorer in the NHL; however, I don’t think one has fan will complain about his career in Montreal.
I thought and still that Brady Tkachuk should have been this pick period. If you don’t want him, don’t put a tent pole in the sand (Button) and take someone else.trade down a few slots..for Kotkaniemi or Zadina who are such a proficient junior player hasn’t caught up to be what he was in the bigs…Heard this on NHL Sirius channel and it applies…”You know all those NHL defensive specialist and checking line forwards? Well, in junior they were proficient scorers but didn’t score in the NHL, and found a role…so Zadina doesn’t have checking line chops in his current game. You acquire him, and you become a team waiting to see if he emerges…
I wish No Trade almost lifeless Sweeney would get off his lazy carcass and make a trade to help this team. You need Color weather radar to find this miserable excuse for a gm. If they renew his contract I may have to stop watching this team for good.
Yeah make a trade for what and who Boston been best team over last month or so just play Swayman 75% of time. Bruins don’t need to do a thing unless it’s moving Jake who doesn’t want to be there. Don’t trade your first for a rental please.
Agree with you Obe
Zadina and Greiss for a second n 2023 ,Benson and Turis for money
Leafs will grab someone like Braun or Miller.
Giroux in Colorado would certainly make them a power house in the west. Could be done easily if he so chooses
There may a trade in the works, Dubas for Sweeney
We can keep you following your team !
At least Dubas is trying to improve his team Sweeney as usual does nothing.
What do you mean as usual Rick?
Last year he acquired Hall, Reilly and Lazar, all of which are still in BOS.
Oh, and every other year they make the playoffs as well.
I would guess he does this year as well.
I hope the Flames stand pat. We made our big move acquiring Toffoli. Going for depth defensemen is a waste of very limited draft picks.
We have a very balanced lineup from the goalie out. Can rotate all 6 defensemen equally. This team is the first Flames team that I have seen in a long time that is built for the playoffs
We will not be pushed around, just the opposite we will be the team doing the pushing.
Hopefully they can go a long way this year because next year this team will look different because of cap restrictions.
I can see the Flames having to trade Monahan or Backlund, possibly Dube in order to sign Gaudreau, Tkachuk, Mangiapane, and Kylington.
All very doable especially if Monahan gets traded for draft picks, no salary coming back
On the other side of the ruble, “The Hockey New” reported yesterday that a “handful of former NHL players are among a long list of players that have severed ties with their KHL teams during the playoffs amidst the ongoing Russian invasion.” As players looking to leave the KHL terminate their contracts, is there any NHL rule that would prevent their defection from influencing the thinking of NHL GMs contemplating their rosters?
A team can sign them now, but each one would have to go through re-entry waivers, where the other teams could claim him.
Thanks, Johnny. My guess is that every one of them would be happy to play with any NHL team, just to be away from Russia. And maybe with a pay raise to boot.
I believe Monahan is gone this summer. Fourth line role and not pp anymore. His $6m salary will be split over Johnny and Tkachuk. I also have a feeling Dube moving at this trade deadline but not for a rental someone with term.
Yeah you could be right. I do however have this sinking feeling that trading Dube will come back to haunt us the same way Bennett did. Dube has talent, speed doesn’t mind mucking it up even though he is on the smaller side, but I think he is trying too hard.
When I watch him it seems like passes hop over his stick, he misses the net gets hit a lot. I can see the talent but for some reason something is just a bit off
What’s the market for the 6 mil 4th liner?
Leafs still need the same piece on the backend that they’ve needed for 10 years or more, someone nasty that can clear the front of the net. Its just too easy going for teams in the leafs zone right now. I’d like to see Manson or Risto acquired
Monahan will be bought out of his last year or 50% retained for a middling pick …this summer
I believe Dube was captain of WJ team Canada . He would have some value at his age.
lots of Edmonton Oilers chatter going on
The Oilers Really Need RD Man Who is a big Phisical guy like NYI Scott Mayfield who may be avalable to play 2 rd man ⁉️
Archabaild could be a good trade fir both teams as that an area NYI need to work on they both have the same cap nubers….
Archabaild is a UFA next year and wants to play closer to home…..🤔
It Dose not sound like the Edmonton Oilers are going to do much with Goaltending….
they will wait till they get Miko Kossknin and his $4.5 million dollar….😭 contract of the books
We All Hope Mike Smith will call it a day as he is One & Done…. He cant even play 10 games this year and has Been Just HORIBLE❗️❗️
Young Skinner has been way better
Sounds like MAF may stay in chicago …? they olny place he wants to go is Back to his Pittsburgh to his Buddys
if the Hawlks can make it work with salary it may well happen … we hope for MAF….👍
That sounds like a great idea Willie