NHL Rumor Mill – April 25, 2022

by | Apr 25, 2022 | Rumors | 12 comments

An update on Jakob Chychrun plus the latest on the Blackhawks plus in today’s NHL rumor mill.

GOPHNX.COM: In a recent mailbag segment, Craig Morgan was asked about Jakob Chychrun’s future with the Arizona Coyotes. He believes once rumors got out that teams were calling about the 24-year-old defenseman that his camp became open to the idea of a trade.

Arizona Coyotes defenseman Jakob Chychrun (NHL Images).

Morgan doesn’t think Chychrun, who’s signed through 2024-25, wants to sacrifice three seasons of his playing prime in a rebuild. He doesn’t see Coyotes general manager Bill Armstrong budging from his high asking price. If teams aren’t willing to pay it this summer (and Chychrun’s subpar season didn’t help), Armstrong won’t trade him.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: The passing of last month’s NHL trade deadline brought an end to the seemingly endless Chychrun trade speculation that had been ongoing since last fall. Things are quiet now but we can expect the rumors to ramp up again as teams are eliminated from the playoffs, reaching another fever pitch approaching the 2022 NHL Draft on July 7 and 8.

Despite the decline in Chychrun’s production this season, his age, puck-moving skills and affordable $4.6 million contract will ensure he remains an attractive trade candidate this summer. A number of the clubs that were linked to him before the trade deadline, such as the Anaheim Ducks, Columbus Blue Jackets, Los Angeles Kings and St. Louis Blues could revisit their interest when the offseason begins.

THE ATHLETIC: Scott Powers recently speculated over the potential rebuilding plans of Chicago Blackhawks general manager Kyle Davidson in the upcoming offseason. If they end up with one of the top two picks in this year’s draft following next month’s draft lottery and send their 2023 first-round to Columbus as part of the Seth Jones trade, perhaps Davidson will have some incentive to improve the club next season. He won’t want that pick to turn into a generational talent for the Jackets if he tanked next season.

On the other hand, if the Blackhawks don’t get that top-two placement and send their 2022 pick to the Blue Jackets, Davidson could commence a major teardown to improve his club’s chances of winning next year’s draft lottery. That could mean letting restricted free agents Dominik Kubalik and Dylan Strome walk this summer without bringing in top-six forwards to replace them.

A league source told Powers they wouldn’t be shocked if Davidson shopped Patrick Kane and Alex DeBrincat this summer. However, there’s no indication the Blackhawks GM has any plans to do that. Davidson is expected to meet with Pat Brisson, the agent for Kane and team captain Jonathan Toews, to discuss his offseason plans.

Meanwhile, Mark Lazerus recently reported Tyler Johnson is willing to embrace a role in the Blackhawks’ rebuild. However, it’s uncertain where he fits in Davidson’s plans.

Johnson is signed through 2023-24 with an annual average value of $5 million. He could fill a veteran leader role if Toews and/or Kane decide to move on from the Blackhawks. Otherwise, Davidson could attempt to move Johnson via trade or buy out the remainder of his contract.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: The Blackhawks will be one of the clubs worth watching during this offseason. Big changes could be in the works that might involve a core player like Toews, Kane or DeBrincat moving on. Davidson won’t shop those guys just for the sake of making changes. However, as we saw with the Brandon Hagel trade, he’ll be willing to move those players for the right offer.

Toews and Kane are in the final seasons of their respective contracts with $10.5-million annual cap hits and full no-movement clauses. DeBrincat is a year away from becoming a restricted free agent with arbitration rights. He has a $6.4-million annual cap hit and lacks no-trade protection but is slated to earn $9 million in actual salary next season.

Johnson’s decline in production and injury history could make him a tough sell in this summer’s trade market. He also has a 20-team list of preferred trade destinations. Cap Friendly shows a buyout will count as over $2.6 million next season, $1.66 million in 2023-24, followed by over $1.46 million for each of the final two years.


  1. If KD does a complete teardown, Maybe Kaner can be persuaded to go home to Buffalo. Kaner might be able to take Jonny Toes along with him:
    Kane + Toews (1/2 salary) for Tuch + Middlestadt
    The Hawks gain over $8M in cap savings, Kaner come home, Toews has a longtime friend in the room for what may be his last season. The Sabers get to the cap floor and have a chance to sign Kane to 4-5 more years.
    If that doesn’t fly, substitute Toews for Johnson ($2M salary retained) for the same return.

    • Hi JZ

      Decision fully with Kane and Toews (full NMC).

      Going back to hometown MIGHT happen… my bet is more on a contender

      From my previous post re Kane/Toews:

      “Ladd (pre signing bonus) to Chi for. 7th…..

      Chi pays Ladd SB, Kane SB, Toews SB….. retains 50% on Kane and 50% on Toews and flips ….

      Kane (50% ) , Toews (50%) , Ladd (full whack) to Arz

      Arz then retains another 50% on EACH of Kane and Toews…. Flips on to one final team

      Final team gets BOTH Kane/Toews for a TOTAL combined Cap hit of ONLY $5.25 M and total cash of only $1.45M

      Arz would have (without above trades) paid Ladd a total of $4 M and had a Cap hit of $5.5 M;

      With this trade (post SB paid by Chi)….. Arz with Ladd back, total Cap hit (including Toews/Kane) of $10.75 M, but only paying Ladd $1M in Sal and $1.45 M total retention on Toews/Kane combined Sal….total Cash outlay…. $2.45 M…. Saving $1.55 M cash while increasing Cap by $5.25 M

      I would argue that benefit to Arz must be worth at least 2 2nds (they have 3 2nds in ‘24) AND a prospect

      Receiving team getting BOTH Kane and Toews for only total Cap hit of $5.5 M…. for ALL of 22/23 …..That has to be worth a 1st, a 2nd, 2 prospects

      So… Hawks could in effect “buy”… a 1st, THREE 2nds, 3 prospects for their rebuild”

      • Pengy….Penguins have had a good season but a bad loss to Philadelphia could have them playing Florida instead of the Rangers.

        Penguins are a good team but not an elite team the need to make some tweaks in the off season.

        – Rebuild a soft defense Resign Letang say 3 years at $ 8 million if not jump on Klinberg asap (trade Petersson then add Luke Schenn
        and Nikita Zadorov..size and grit.

        – Let Malkin walk his 5 on 5 stats are atrocious and he is -12, inconsistent, undisciplined it is time,,,use that $9.5 million to sign some other players.
        – if you trade Petersson, let Malkin, Kapenan, De Smith, Boyle go…

        –That is $18.7 million–

        You can resign Rakell and Rust and still have 5 or $6 million to sign others plus cap goes up $1million

        that 5 or $ 6 million could het us 25 year old center Jack Roslovic of Columbus UFA who is fast, gritty, skilled and has 21 goals this season.

      • Hi BnG

        good points

        Yes tough loss. They just didn’t seem to click; and of course… 2 GAs on you know who…. under no circumstances should he ever play on the PK

        On one shift he had 3 separate chances to get the puck out… Nyet.

        I am not as down on Gino as you are. All comes down to what he is willing to take as a home-town discount.

        They will move either Petterson or Dumo (P-O J in)… netting around $3.1 M in Cap diff

        Zucker out; Poulin or another WBS in… there is another $4.6 M

        At that point $37.4 M in space

        I think they will not be able to afford Rusty; and they will re-up Rakell cheaper

        If they get Tanger/Gino/Rakell/Good Back up for a total of $25 M….

        $12.4 left for 6 Forwards…

        including re-up of Heinen and E-Rod; I don’t have confidence that they will re-up Kappy, but if they do, it will be less than the $3.2 M that he is getting now.

        I don’t think Jackets will let Roslovic go.

        Zahardov might be available.

        Schenn would need to be traded for (I wanted him this season) as he has one more year under contract

        Do you think Jimbo would take Zucker and Ruhweedel for Schenn (LOL)

        Re Pens and playoffs this year.

        There best chance is against Canes; and that is looking less and less likely

        CanNOT see them beating Cats

        Shesterkin scares the Shesh@#$tkin out of me

        Needed that win last night, and for Leafs to win in Reg.

        Caps one point behind, game in hand; Pens without Jarry…. looking more and more like Pens will be WC team; and Bruins looking like they will finish ahead of Pens… so the worst…. Pens travelling to Sunrise

    • Im not trading Tuch for one year of good Kane, not great, and a very expensive Toews who is probably worth a quarter of his contract. Hawks should be glad if Buffalo takes them(combined) for nothing

      • Tuch is a very good player. He is not from Buffalo and he will NEVER be as good as Kaner. Kane most certainly has more than a year left at being a top producer in this league. He doesn’t have much help and still is elite. He’s taken like almost no injuries. If you think Kane isn’t still in the top 20 for the next 3 years AT LEAST, you are going to be wrong. Alex Tuch will never be a draw to Buffalo fans. The best American born hockey player of all time that’s from Buffalo can. Tuch’s name will most likely never be on a cup. You know how many Kane has along with personal trophie achievements. Don’t ever say Tuch is untouchable when you can get the best athlete to ever come out of Buffalo. Get a grip.

    • absolutely not!

      • Yes, Tuch is not as good as Kane, but there’s also like 780 players that also aren’t. Also, how would you know that Tuch most likely won’t win a cup?He made it to the finals his first full year.If Kane maybe love’s Buffalo but I highly doubt he loves the Sabres.

  2. I wonder, if Chicago doesn’t win the lottery, gives their pick away to Columbus……if there’s a deal to be done with Ottawa for their pick……and Seth Jones. He almost seems like he doesn’t fit in with a rebuild.

    Big ticket item for the Sens.I don’t know what a deal would look like or if Hawks fans would be interested.

    • Hi Dark G

      As you know I’m a Leafs and Pens fan… but if I’m Dorian and knowing Sens much further along rebuild than Sabres…..I’d be aggressive…

      Sanderson + Jarventie + Pinto + 1st (‘22) + 2nd (‘22 – BOLTS) for

      Power + Jokiharu

      • Pengy…BNG here I think Rutherford would take Kapanen or Zucker for Luke Schenn.

        Luke Schenn is so steady, so solid, and terrific with physicality and grit which is what we need..
        The other night bug Jamie Benn Rode Quinn Hughes hard in to the boards (legal) but Schenn went right after bug Jamie Benn and out him down.

        iI’m realistic when it comes to Malkin at 36 he is a good player not elite anymore and just bad defensively.

        His home is in Florida we can use the $9.5 million.
        Crosby is still elite closing in on 90 points..
        still dominate 2 way player..

  3. Quite an emotional tribute by the Habs to The Flower last night. Brought back memories of those great Habs teams of the 70s. That was the team I grew up watching. I remember Beliveau’s last season and Henri Richard’s last few seasons, but the better parts of their careers occurred before I was old enough to watch the games. Cournoyer and Lemaire had been playing a few years by that time as well. But I remember Lafleur being drafted and then watched as he became a superstar.
    Quite simply put, Guy Lafleur was the best player on the best hockey team of all time. The atmosphere was always super-charged when he was on the ice. As one columnist put it, no other player, not even Orr, Gretzky or Lemieux, could electrify the crowds like he could. RIP Guy.

    On another note, there was a post a few days ago in which a writer put forth his belief that Letang would sign with the Habs (I missed being able to post a couple of days because of Passover). I would imagine he’d want at least 8M. AAV for 3-4 years. As great a player as he is, I think a contract like that for a 35 year old is not what the Habs need now. Justin Barron must be given a chance to play next year. Assuming that Petry is traded, bringing in a less expensive and younger than Letang RD would help. Maybe Dumba, as the Wild will likely have to trade him.