NHL Rumor Mill – June 16, 2022

by | Jun 16, 2022 | Rumors | 23 comments

Is it worthwhile for the Blackhawks to trade Alex DeBrincat? Are there any potential trade partners for the Sharks’ Brent Burns? Check out the latest in today’s NHL rumor mill.


THE ATHLETIC: Scott Powers explains why the Chicago Blackhawks are likely to trade Alex DeBrincat this summer.

Chicago Blackhawks winger Alex DeBrincat (NHL Images).

One reason is it would be pointless carrying the 24-year-old winger on an expensive long-term contract when their rebuild process could take four or five years to complete. DeBrincat is a restricted free agent with arbitration rights next summer who will cost $9 million just to qualify his rights. Powers believes Blackhawks management would prefer to have cap and roster flexibility at this point.

Powers also suggested that there’s no certainty DeBrincat will sign a long-term extension if the Blackhawks are rebuilding. Moving him now while he still has a year left on his contract could help them fetch the best return.

Mark Lazerus, on the other hand, believes it would be short-sighted madness by the Blackhawks to trade DeBrincat. While acknowledging Powers’ points, he believes it’s worthwhile to retain a player to build around who wants to be in Chicago. Lacking a star like DeBrincat during the rebuilding phase could also hurt the Blackhawks at the gate.

CHICAGO SUN-TIMES: Ben Pope reports the New Jersey Devils have been linked to DeBrincat. They hold the second-overall selection in this year’s draft. So have the Philadelphia Flyers (fifth-overall pick), Ottawa Senators (seventh overall), New York Islanders (13th overall) and Los Angeles Kings (19th overall).

Trading away DeBrincat could also lead to long-time Blackhawks stars Patrick Kane and Jonathan Toews to depart either by requesting a trade or via next summer’s free-agent market. Both have one season remaining on their contracts.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Blackhawks general manager Kyle Davidson has already indicated the club is undergoing a rebuild. However, that process could take place with DeBrincat as a foundation player.

I don’t think Davidson is actively shopping DeBrincat but could listen to offers. It’ll take a significant one to convince him to part with the two-time 40-goal scorer. If he moves DeBrincat, it’ll likely be in the days or hours leading up to the opening round of this year’s draft on July 7.


NBC SPORTS BAY AREA: Sheng Peng recently examined potential trade destinations for Brent Burns if the 37-year-old defenseman and the San Jose Sharks decided to part ways. Peng observed Burns didn’t exactly quash the notion of chasing a Stanley Cup elsewhere during his end-of-season interview last month.

Peng listed the Dallas Stars, Nashville Predators, and New York Islanders as three possible destinations, speaking with reporters and bloggers who cover those clubs if Burns would be a suitable fit.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Despite his age and the three years remaining on his contract, Burns would still be a terrific fit for a team with Stanley Cup aspirations seeking a big puck-moving defenseman.

However, his $8 million annual cap hit and three-team trade list are significant sticking points. Unless the Sharks retain salary or take back a contract of roughly the same value, I don’t see Burns changing teams this summer.


  1. Burns an Islander with Lou in charge???? I really wanna see this! LOL

  2. Trading DeBrincat should trigger a Kane trade. This would be VERY beneficial for the Hawk’s rebuild!

    • Johnny..I agree not sure what are they doing in Chicago?

      They moved Hagel why ?

      They are talking about moving DeBrincat why?

      They are talking about moving Kirby Dach why?

      They are moving young affordable players ???

      Kane would have to approve any move correct?

  3. Debrincat is a pure goal scorer. Shoots BB’s . Also durable for his size and still young . Excellent chemistry with Kane . I think Toews goes ahead of him .
    The only way I would consider it is for a top 5 pick included so maybe NJD and Philly . Would work well with J Hughes
    At #7 I think Sens need to add quite a bit more. Like one of their top D prospects and maybe a Pinto . They are not paying that salary though so a mute point .

    • Have to agree there, SilverSeven. I mean, I LIKE what DeBrincat brings to the table, but qualifying him at $9 mil? Whoof.

      He’s played 368 games and his 82-game averages work out to 36g 33a 69 pts and he’s a career -20. He’s also what you could call diminutive at 5′ 7″ and 165 lbs soaking wet, so there’s always the question about how he’d stand up to the yearly grind.

      I don’t know – is $9 mil per to be the going rate for that sort of production? Maybe, if the cap ever starts rising annually at the rate pre-Covid.

      I can’t see Dorion doing that, automatically making him the highest salaried player on the team ahead of Tkachuk and Chabot and probably well ahead of Norris, who figures to get a pretty decent deal this summer.

  4. Toews contract might as well be a no-trade clause cause no team will ever touch that contract.

    • How many years are left on Kane and Toews matching $10.5 million dollar deals?

      • 1

  5. Why trade for Debrincat and give up assets this year when its apparent Chicago does not want to sign him? Play the waiting game for next year. Yeah, you might not get him, but you also don’t cripple your salary cap and lose high-end prospects.

    • As per Cap Friendly, Debrincat is an RFA after next season. A team would need to offer sheet him and still lose assets if they manage to sign him after next season.

      • Yep. Still not worth $9 million and losing assets.

  6. Chicago for sure needs to move out Kane and Toews before Debrincat. They can move him but its silly to make that move and still have the older guys around

    • Moving Kane would be easy, nut good luck trying to trade Toews.

      • I think any team interested in Toews Chicago would have to retain at least 50%..

        I could see a team trying to get over the hump take him for 1 year @ 50 % / 60 % retained to play 3rd line center and provide leadership..

        Kane much easier to move still playing at a high level..

  7. HARD pass on Burns. If we’re not going to pay Klingberg 8 million, then not a chance on Burns. Now if the Sharks want to retain half to reunite Burns and Pavs for a couple seasons…. maybe. But, then you’ve got Burns and Suter who can’t keep up with the kids in this league….so, rethinking it…. I’m back to HARD pass.

  8. HARD pass on Burns. If we’re not going to pay Klingberg 8 million, then not a chance on Burns. Now if the Sharks want to retain half to reunite Burns and Pavs for a couple seasons…. maybe. But, then you’ve got Burns and Suter who can’t keep up with the kids in this league….so, rethinking it…. I’m back to HARD pass.

    • Sorry for the duplicate. Lyle, please delete one. Thnx

    • Interesting off-season for the Stars .. sans Jake Oettinger, I’d say the Stars are a lost cause and should go into a rebuild for the post-Benn and Seguin era… with Oettinger, they might be a piece or two away from a ‘surprising’ playoff run – tough sledding ahead for Jim Nill! Either way, within a year or two I think they’ll be re-tooling or re-building anyway, around Oettinger, Heiskanen, Harley, Robertson, and maybe Hintz (who would be 26/27 years old by that time.

  9. Given the Canucks allegedly had interest in Pavel Zacha (if I remember correctly), what about:

    To NJD: JT Miller (sign and trade – get the 8th year and lessen the yearly cap hit), Brock Boeser

    To VAN: 2nd overall pick 2022, Pavel Zacha, +?

    What might need to be added to make that desirable for both teams??

    • Can’t re-sign Miller in time for the draft. NJ would have to add more just for Miller, his stock is very high right now. And yes, Miller whould have to be signed to an extension to be traded for that treasure trove of a return.

  10. Don’t see either Toews or Kane getting moved before next years deadline. DeBrincat should get a long term deal if anyone gives up assets for him. AAV would probably be closer to 7m than 9.

  11. Debrincat. To NJ. For 2nd overall pick and a 4th. This would probably lead to Toews and Kane being moved on or b4 the next deadline

  12. 🇺🇸 Re; Chicago Blackhawks Rebuild

    I would Try to Trade Both Patrick Kaine &
    Jonathan Toews at the NHL Draft Thursday July 7th
    to start there Re build Sooner than latter

    Hawlks will have to retain salary to make it work but they could get quite a bit for Patrick Kaine
    A 1st pick & a Very Good Top prospect…⁉️

    Jonathan Toews Will be Very hard to move because of his health, lack of scoring & $10.M contract….❓
    I can see him going home to winnipeg Jets for a year or 2…?

    Patrick Kaine
    Will want to go to a contender if he has to wave his NTC…..
    Dont rule out Vegas….,🤔

    They will both be gone at the end of the 2023 season via next summer’s free-agent market.
    Both have one season remaining on their $10.M contracts.
    both would speed up the Re-build,

    Would NJD be a trade partner with them for
    De-Brincat with there 2nd over all pick…. and a 2nd pick and a good prospect❓

    I would not Trade The Cat, he will be the Top line winger for the next 10 years…..👍