NHL Rumor Mill – June 23, 2022

by | Jun 23, 2022 | Rumors | 51 comments

The Jets are reportedly exploring trade options for Blake Wheeler while Pierre-Luc Dubois indicates his time in Winnipeg could be short. Check out the details plus the latest on Tyson Barrie in today’s NHL rumor mill.


DAILY FACEOFF: Winnipeg Jets captain Blake Wheeler checks in at No. 3 on Frank Seravalli’s updated list of this offseason’s trade targets. He indicates sources say the Jets are exploring the trade market and engaging with teams on the possibility of moving the 35-year-old right winger.

Winnipeg Jets captain Blake Wheeler (NHL Images)

Wheeler has a full no-movement clause until July 1, after which it reverts to a five-team trade list. He has two more seasons remaining on his contract with an annual average value of $8.25 million.

Seravalli suggested Wheeler’s contract might not be difficult to move. He suggests there could be a market among playoff contenders seeking a “point-per-game, play-driving winger with size and heart.”

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Wheeler was all those things Seravalli described during his playing prime. However, age could be catching up with him. He got off to a slow start last season and was hampered by a bout with COVID-19 and an injury, though his performance improved over the second half as he finished with 60 points in 65 games. His leadership also came under criticism by Winnipeg pundits and fans amid rumors of divisions in the Jets’ dressing room.

Wheeler’s contract is an issue with the salary cap rising by just $1 million for 2022-23. It’s not impossible to move as there will probably be general managers willing to gamble on him remaining a point-per-game winger on a deeper roster. However, they might not be keen to carry an $8.25 million cap hit for the next two seasons. The Jets could end up taking back a comparable contract, retain part of his annual cap hit, or attempt a three-team deal to spread the dollars around.


THE SCORE: cited Sportsnet’s Elliotte Friedman reporting Pierre-Luc Dubois informed Jets management of his intention to test the open market when he’s eligible to become an unrestricted free agent in 2024.

Dubois is a restricted free agent this summer with arbitration rights. Friedman said the Jets have control of the process until then and intend to keep the 23-year-old center “and have him as a Jet for a long time.”

SPECTOR’S NOTE: The Jets acquired Dubois last season from the Columbus Blue Jackets in exchange for Patrik Laine and Jack Roslovic. They probably envisioned signing him to a long-term contract with perhaps an eye on him taking over from Mark Scheifele as their first-line center. Scheifele, by the way, is also eligible for UFA status in 2024.

This is not an ideal situation for the Jets. Dubois intends to just sign a two-year extension and then leave in 2024. Based on Friedman’s report, management seems to believe they can convince him otherwise. Unless they’re willing to open the vault and overpay for his services this summer, they risk watching him walk away in two years’ time.

That might explain Seravalli’s report claiming the Jets are gauging Wheeler’s value in the trade market. They might be trying to shed his salary to make room for a hefty raise for Dubois.


EDMONTON JOURNAL: David Staples weighed in on Tyson Barrie ending up on Daily Faceoff’s list of this summer’s trade targets. He not only agrees with it but predicts the 30-year-old Oilers defenseman will be shipped out this summer.

Staples believes Barrie’s puck-moving skills will draw interest in the trade market. With Evan Bouchard and Cody Ceci as right-shot defensemen superior to Barrie at even strength, the latter’s $4.5 million cap hit is a luxury the Oilers can’t afford. He suggests shipping him out to clear cap space to add a goaltender or to re-sign Evander Kane.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Barrie carries a reasonable short-term contract and lacks no-trade protection. I can see him getting moved in a cost-cutting deal this summer.


  1. Ultimate punishment.. Send Wheeler back to AZ.

    • Where, in a couple of years, he could be playing RW on a line with Matthews in a new arena. 🙂

      • Wheeler won’t last that long.

    • AZ is a worse place to live compared to Winterpeg?

      • Weather and taxes matter now!

    • Arizona is an awesome place to live…I’m not sure I’d consider it punishment.

      • I don’t think AZ meant the weather.

      • Ray shoots and scores… Not about the weather… Look up whiner’s I mean wheeler’s history….

    • Yeah 5 team trade list, Zero chance he’d ever go back to Arizona.

  2. Fun Fact :

    Since 1967 Nazim Kadri has more Stanley Cup Finals goals than the entire Toronto Maple Leafs franchise.

    • And about to join a growing list of ex-Leafs who went elsewhere to win their first Cup: Kaberle, Andreychuk, Damphousse, Kessel, McDonald, Bozak, Verhaeghe, McElhinney, Schenn, Gunnarsson, Steen

      The start of a pretty good team there.

      • You would know George since like most here, devalue a player because of the team they play on happen to have a maple leaf on its sweater then with all the hindsight in the world and being blissfully ignorant, post a comment like you did above…what the real funny thing is, that is soooo true about your team, the Sens but not so much about your other fav team the Habs…many will agree the opposite is true there…the Flyers, we’ll do you really want to call them an NHL team at this point? The S#it Show is just starting there.

        I can’t help but wonder if you guys – like Ron, wake up everyday needing to spew your vitriol here. I’m sure I’m not alone in thinking this and have no problems pointing out your BS resisting to having call people deserving awful names that would aptly suit them.

      • Mr Moore,

        Thank you for your in depth input. As always your well thought out verbiage is sure to enthrall the humble masses with its brilliance.

        Fact: Kadri does indeed have more Finals goals since 67 than the entire Leafs franchise. That is indisputable, you cannot argue that.

        Fact : Johnny PJs Tavares makes 11 million dollars. That also is indisputable.

        Fact: Marner does have a summer residence in the Muskokas.

        Not Actual Fact but Humor: No evidence of any smores being consumed or hot chocolates being enjoyed. May also be doubtful that Scooby Dubas or Mr Shanaplan have led a rendition of any campfire songs.

        Fact: The Not So Fabulous Flyers in their current state do indeed “suck”.

        Odd that you take such offense at others sense of humor and opinions yet offer little more than criticism in response.

        It was a joke, an attempt at humor. My deepest most sincere apology if it upset you or caused you any deep emotional harm.

        Might I suggest a week in the Muskokas to help you unwind?

        Do enjoy a most fantastic day, cheers.

      • I’m Glad the Leafs bug you that much. But to be reaslistic that team should have been traded to Ottawa for your enjoyment minus Damphousse and Andrechuck.

      • George O – don’t forget Gary Leeman who raised Lord Stanley in 1993 with the Habs

      • And to add Mr. Moore, it’s a fact that all those players listed had to go elsewhere to win a cup after many of them became targets of crowd anger i.e. scapegoats) – an ongoing feature of playing in Toronto. Kadri was no exception. He got suspended a couple of times – and boo-hoo, his loss was the sole reason they failed to get out of Round 1.

        Ottawa? What about them. Of course there are similar cases of ex-Senators winning a cup elsewhere. But I don’t recall many of them being targets of fan vitriol before leaving.

        And, like some in here, I don’t have “another” team. At one time I was a Habs fan. But that changed when the city I live in got a franchise. Seems appropriate to me.

      • Thank you both for your response.

        Ron I apologize if I was unable to detect the humor in your joke but alas it seems I’m not alone. I think as for your joke writing, you lack a segue into that joke or you really need to put more of an effort in it. So… not funny/dumb “point” or good example of the definition of vitriol.

        George I think our problem lies in our differentiating definitions of the word fans. I’m sure your mixing it up with either the press including the talking heads on the tv and/or radio or the people that claim to be a fan but you would be hard pressed if you’d ever expect them to say anything positive about any part of the team.

        And I’m pretty sure your very aware of how large of a following the team has and with that you’ll have a large range of opinions that often contradict another group of fans opinions. Then you have a large majority that can’t be bothered to discuss the team or hockey because nothing will be gained by it.

        Re: you being a Habs fan, I get the sense that like a Leafs fan, your kinda always one and as such, you still hold a special place for a most hated (in a sports lingo way) rival of that team. I could be wrong but I really don’t get your impulse to post about the Leafs, often for no apparent reason. I’m missing something I guess.

    • So does Helm.

    • Wow that’s amazing.
      Pick a number in your head…double it, add 4, divide by two , take away the first number you were thinking and have yourself not one,..but 2 hero cookies.

  3. Meanwhile at Lil Mitchys million dollar cabin in the woods the Muskoka Maple Leafs are chilling by the campfire choking down Johnny its not about the money Tavareses world famous smores and hot chocolates.

    Scooby Dubas and Brenden Shanahasnoplan leading a rousing chorus of Koom Bye Ah.

    Special moments, lol.

    • That’s really good Ron.

    • great message Ronny!

  4. Imagine if Rick was a Leaf fan lol blood pressure 200 over 100 and his head would have exploded years ago.

    • So True plus,…JT’s head ( he knows which head) would have exploded lol

  5. I still find it amazing. Certain teams turn themselves into fantasy hock teams (stars and scrubs) then wonder why they are against the cap and still cannot win. Its about balance. I was reminded when I see the PLD comments above. Yes he is due a hefty raise. But does he care about winning as opposed to being a little less incredibly wealthy. If he signs for $9-10 million in Winnipeg, he will be wondering why they aren’t winning in a few years and tell management to do something about it or trade him. Sorry I had to rant

    • Totally agree. PLD should be a $7m player. Either that or these $9.5m contracts should only get 4 years’ term.

    • Is Dubois a number one centre? And is he actually worth that big cap hit? I wonder if it would be best for the Jets to enter a rebuild. Trade Dubois, Scheifele, and Hellebuyck for picks and prospects.

    • Not a rant at all redmonsters … it’s a perfectly valid – and accurate – description of the basic flaw in a sport where, although salaries (and hence cap hits) continue to rise, unfortunately the cap limit does not keep pace. So much so that, this year there are projected to be even more RFAs who will be allowed to become UFAs simply because their current teams don’t have the cap space to re-sign them. And, once again, there will be a number of UFAs who, in past years, might have found new locations but now will either have to retire or play elsewhere.

      And every year the NHL holds their think-tank meetings in some sunny clime and, in the end, avoid coming up with a different formula to take this increasing trend into account.

    • Red monsters. I also read PLD comments as he’s keeping options open. He’s really just coming to his prime years. He’ll get a nice 2 year bridge deal. Then we’ll see where his value is and what future cap looks like.
      The Wheeler rumors are interesting. 1st Schiefele now him. I believe this goes back to Schiefele hit on Evans that he got suspended for. Wonder if it’s these 2 vets causing riff in locker room.

    • This was exactly my point in a post a few weeks back. Having $98 million in the bank when you retire, but never even having played for the Cup…or maybe retiring with $80 million, because you took a team friendly salary for a few years, but you actually have your name on the Cup. I would think Henrik Lundqvist would take that deal.
      I’ll say it again, no 11 year kid is in his driveway shooting pucks and hoping that he scores the goal that makes him sign a 7 year/$70 million contract…he’s playing out game 7 of the cup finals in his head, and he just scored the winning goal….in overtime.
      So, agree 100% with what you said…”a little less wealthy”

      • Starsfan, I think you are right, the player wants the cup (in most cases). But his agent is driving the negotiations and the players union is against what we refer to as “home-town” discounts”. Its always more, more, and more. The old theory of a rising tide raises all ships. But that would only be true in a static player market – which we know we don’t have. If you are a fringe or even a decent player there is some youngster on a cheaper contract waiting to take your job – so some ships just sink….

      • And for the majority of those that would take less money but still not get a cup… hardest trophy to win… do they look at the 18 mil they sacrificed and say it was worth it?

      • Probably not. No, scratch that … DEFINITELY not. But then some of those players who opted for the really big bucks should have the common sense not to bitch – or demand trades – when, year after year, their team gets knocked out of the playoffs because their cap hit, combined with 3 or 4 others, make it impossible for their GM to flesh out his roster in a manner that makes it a 4-line 3-pairing D winning combination. Of course, to be charitable, I’m also assuming they have the rudimentary mathematical skills to add.

    • When I read the Dubois item, it made me nauseous. Two years before he ‘s a free agent, he’s telling the team he wants out. What a joke.

  6. Wheeler contract will be easy to move. hahaha that’s funny.

    PLD now that’s disappointing, that statement doesn’t do anything for Winnipeg.

    Basically saying A. I don’t want to be here or B. I plan on as getting as much money as possible.

    Which is fine and his right, but he just reduced the value of any potential trade Winnipeg could make. No team is going to give up alot for a player who let it be known, he is going to market.

    Things are starting to look ugly in Winnipeg.

    • Caper, you’re a B’s fan who lives in WPG.
      B’s need a C, PLD is a solid #2, could be a #1 with a guy like Pasta or March on the wing.

      Agree, he just hurt his trade value, but by how much?

      Lysell, Haula (trade chip at deadline if not a fit and on a good deal) Carlo with Foligno to make the $ work for BOS?

      Too much, not enough? Perhaps it isn’t about the location and about something else and he is open to extension, B’s can talk to him if WPG lets him.

      • And what a team-mate he will be, Ray.

    • Ray I don’t think any of the trades work for Winnipeg.

      PLD can be a #1 C got size, speed and grit. Can totally dominate when he wants to. Plays with an edge that i really like.

      Winnipeg more then anything needs better D, start will Carlo and Debrusk and may have to throw in a draft pick.

      PLD turns 24 tomorrow is 6’3″ weighs 218lbs and already has season of 27 and 28 goals

      If Striker was still on here he would say something about his size and the amount of games it takes for him to reach his peak. my way of saying he hasn’t peaked.

      I don’t think Boston wants to give Lysel to anyone.

      I would try to move Charlie Coyle but Winnipeg is probably on his no trade list and Winnipeg may not want his contract.

      • Thanks Caper, I agree with what Striker said about the big guys, and he did back it up with numerous examples. As a general rule of course, always exceptions.

  7. Water is starting to thicken. (UFA’s RFA’s) fun time of the year. Can’t wait for the draft to see what transpires.
    PLD good player (3rd liner) Maybe he’ll go to Philly, join Torts? 🙂
    Wonder what’ll happen with Fail. Geurin will sign I’m sure.

  8. For all the talk about other canadian markets – can’t think of a team that had so much promise and collapsed so quickly. The Jets had it all it seemed..and not enough was made of Maurice’s departure.
    It was framed as good guy material but may more likely have been have been “this culture is crippling”
    Sad state of affairs…

    All the leaf haters love that Kadri scored last night… all the former leaf playoff success stories lol, like it doesnt happen to other teams.

    I like Kadri- BUT there are many who think he needed to be traded as well but wont admit now.

    He was playing 3rd line centre (and please dont tell me John Tavares wasnt a great signing at the time) and had come off a second straight suspension, was actually suspended the following year as well. Good to see he has his best year ever in a contract season- he will get overpaid and Im happy for him.
    While Im happy for the kid lets stop with the the should never have been dealt stuff.

    They picked up Kerfoot and Barrie, the latter didnt pan out, Kerfoot has been a solid additon and while the comparisons to kadri are inevitable- he plays 3rd and pk ..he isnt playing second line for the AVs.

    • You’re wasting your breath no matter how right or factual you are in here. I can’t tell you how refreshing it is to see tho.

  9. Seen this story before in Winnipeg Trouba Laine now Dubois. It must be the -45 wind chill in January’s darkest days.
    Wheeler will have to be 50 % retained to have any chance of moving –

    • If Letang walks, I could see the Pens targeting Barrie. Also wouldn’t mind if they could also get Puljujarvi in the deal.

      • It does make sense the Pens could make a play for Barrie Sjpp, if Letang moves on.
        I just don’t know what makes sense for the Oilers as a return off the PIT roster.
        The #1 thing the Oil needs is a starting tender, or an asset that gets them one, which isn’t likely.

        Can’t see the Pens moving ex Oil King – Jarry (if signed to an extension), as they will be in the same boat without a starter in net.

        If the Oil find their tender, and then move Barrie? Maybe, but would likely have to be picks and or prospects.

  10. Among the next Bruins coach’s priorities: reviving Trent Frederic and Jack Studnicka.

    Someone in the Bruins organization needs to tell Trent he isn’t a tough guy and he needs to stop laughing every time he’s engaged on the ice act gets old…. Studs isn’t ever going to be a legit 1st or 2nd line center a 3rd is more like it and even then it’s a toss up

    • Ray Bark
      Maybe P.O. Joseph( former 1st round pick and top defensive prospect) and a 2nd round pick gets it done for Barrie.

      • Value is fair player wise Sjpp, but still think Oil need to find that tender first, and maybe they do and then make the deal with PIT.

  11. George and Ron Jull is your daily mission to get on here and make a Leaf comment ! Really what a joke !

    • Dont blame me. Blame the Muskoka Maple Leafs, Scooby Dubas just makes it waaaay to easy.


    • bozh what are you saying, that it’s weird that without any Leafs mention in the days post that they post anyway and in an insulting manner? It is odd at the least and an annoyance since it’s like an echo that won’t stop.

      Just continue to comment and ignore, your not gonna learn anything at all from them…sit back and enjoy the derp derp derp.