NHL Rumor Mill – June 25, 2022

by | Jun 25, 2022 | Rumors | 41 comments

Speculation is growing suggesting the Canucks could trade J.T. Miller. Could the Capitals or Penguins be among the suitors? Find out in today’s NHL rumor mill.

THE PROVINCE: Patrick Johnston cited CHEK TV’s Rick Dhaliwal reporting the Vancouver Canucks are once again listening to trade offers. He added he checked with the 29-year-old center’s representatives, who weren’t surprised by the news.

Vancouver Canucks forward J.T. Miller (NHL Images).

Miller is a year away from unrestricted free agent eligibility. He’s coming off a career-best 99-point performance this season. He carries a $5.25 million cap hit on his current contract and is in line for a big pay raise.

Johnston spoke with Canucks president of hockey operations Jim Rutherford, who indicated the club would like to keep Miller, However, he warned that it might not make sense for both sides. “We’d like to do it but we’ve got to be careful,” said Rutherford.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Miller was a fixture in this season’s rumor mill leading up to the March trade deadline. The Canucks retained him in part because they were still jockeying for a playoff berth.

It doesn’t hurt to gauge Miller’s value in the trade market but it doesn’t mean he’s certain to be moved. Nevertheless, if the cost of re-signing him proves too high or if he’d prefer to test next summer’s trade market, it’s best to move him this summer (preferably before free agency opens on July 13) when teams have the cap space and the willingness to make deals for players like him.

Better to move Miller for the best possible return now than have his eventual departure hang over the Canucks next season. It would be an unnecessary and unwelcome distraction for him and the team.

There’s no guarantee hanging onto Miller for the trade deadline will result in a better return. If he gets injured, his value plummets. If it’s a season-ending injury, they’ll at worst lose him for nothing to free agency next July or at best get a conditional draft pick if they shop his rights before the free-agent market opens.

WASHINGTON HOCKEY NOW: Sammi Silber cites Sportsnet’s Elliotte Friedman telling Dhaliwal that the Washington Capitals have been linked to Miller and Colorado Avalanche center Nazem Kadri. The Capitals are searching for a suitable replacement for Nicklas Backstrom, whose future is in doubt after undergoing potential career-ending hip resurfacing surgery.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Miller would be the better choice for the Capitals. He’s locked in for one more season at $5.25 million. Kadri is slated to become an unrestricted free agent on July 13 and in line for a big raise over his current $4.5 million annual average value.

Whether the Capitals can afford the Canucks’ asking price is another matter. I suspect they’ll want a first-round pick or a top prospect plus a young, promising NHL player in return.

Replacing Backstrom isn’t the only issue facing the Capitals this summer. Silber points out they need a proven starting goaltender, a scoring winger and blueline depth.

VANCOUVER HOCKEY NOW: Rob Simpson reports the New Jersey Devils have been mentioned as a suitor for Miller. They’re willing to part with their 2022 first-round pick (second overall) for the right price. He also mentioned the Pittsburgh Penguins could be interested if Evgeni Malkin departs via free agency next month.

Simpson suggested Capitals winger Conor Sheary might be enticing to the Canucks brass, as they remember him well from their days with the Penguins. The Caps also have a right-shot prospect defenseman in Coquitlam native Vincent Iorio who could interest them.

Penguins defenseman John Marino could be an attractive option for the Canucks. Winger Kasperi Kapanen could be another option.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Miller can play wing or center, which could work for the Devils in their quest for an impact player to play alongside their young forwards. However, they might prefer assurances they can re-sign Miller before parting with that second-overall pick. Otherwise, they risk losing him for nothing next summer.

As I mentioned earlier, I’m skeptical that the Capitals have enough to offer up to the Canucks for Miller. Rutherford and GM Patrik Allvin know the Penguins’ depth pretty well from their tenures there. Whether a deal can be made there, however, is another matter.


  1. Really don’t want Kadri on the Capitals. Would highly prefer Miller or trying to lure Giroux. They also ideally will move Mantha, but unlikely they move him yet. Need to have another year of inconsistency (all he’s ever known) before moving his contract.

    • Claude would be better off to go to the Avs or Dallas

      • Would love to have Girouux in Victory Green. But only if he’s at a point in his career that he takes a considerable discount. Anything over 5 million, I just done see. Radulov’s 6.5 is gone, Klingberg’s 6 will be gone, but Peterson and Oettinger need well deserved raises. If we could get someone to take Benn or Seguin and replace with Claude, that would be OK too. But no one will take those contacts.

  2. Miller is top ten in scoring this year. Washington is not getting him for a first or a too prospect. It would be both plus an additional piece be it draft pick or young roster player.

  3. Miller, Boeser, Horvath…..let’s make up our minds on who goes instead of this carousal! Inquiring minds wanna know! LOL

  4. Miller is a good player that had a great season. Vancouver media has the nasty habit of referring to Miller, Hughes and Pettersson as “elite”. When the only “elite” Canuck is Demko.

    Id be wary of an overpay if trading for Miller.

    • Ron…Allvin watching elite talent such as Crosby, Malkin, also came out and said the team doesnt have elite players.
      Hughes COULD be that if Canucks ever got him a decent partner other than 32yr old Luke Schenn.

      Demko sure is pretty good and likely get that status as well if he was playing in Toronto, Carolina or markets with excellent teams in need of a goaltender

      • Tyler….I’ll take tough, dependable, not flashy, but will fight to stick up for a teammate Luke Schenn on the Penguins.

        Kapanen to Vancouver for Luke Schenn !!

        Schenn helps us with toughness and steadiness to our defense corps and Kapanen is a young, skilled, and yes inconsistent talent that might be a better for with the young Canucks..

      • BnG

        Schenn on Pens …. Great idea 👍👍

  5. mrazek and nylander for miller

  6. mrazek and nylander for miller

    • No one want s Mrázek. Unless one nice sweetener is attached He will be Leafs starter next year 🤔

      • Scooby Dubas has no prospects to sweeten any deal with.

    • Nobodys going to give up an asset for Mrazek, an overpaid injury prone backup goalie they could have claimed waivers for free.

      The Canucks already have a roster filled with creampuffs, no way the move Miller for William MeLander.

      Dont say add Holl either. The Canucks defence is already rife with pylons and turnstiles, no need for another one.

      • I guess you being a flyers fan you should know crap when you see it, or are you so overfilled with it (based on your comments, I’m leaning towards this) all you see is crap. Thanks for keeping my team in the conversation again when no mention of them in the post. A true Beleafer!

      • Sounds like you know Ron

      • We have alot of crap on our team for sure, and a useless GM who couldn’t figure out how to build a cup ever.

        We do have some good pieces but no great to elite players. Flyers shouldnt be adding anything but we will and once again finish outside the playoffs.

        Goal is to get the GM fired this year!!!!!!!!!

      • Chicago trying to trade tons of assets and this is where Mrazek could come into play. So if they want to gain higher draft picks what goaltender should they go after? Maybe Mrazek is first on their list. Never say never.

      • Knies would look good in Vancouver but Dubas wont part with him

      • Uhh. don’t look now but it was crazy canuck who brought them up first.

      • MP not real offense to all you good Flyers fans, just the trolly ones that are an embarrassment to their fan base like Ron clearly is.

      • It seems like a Canucks – Penguins trade is coming.. Rutherford loves certain guys on the Penguins. they have stolen 3 executives now from the Penguins and Vancouver does need a RHD….they want to move Meyers,

        The main name that keeps coming up is 25 year RHD John Marino to Vancouver..

        The names are varying on who goes to Pittsburgh..

        Connor Garland
        J.T. Miller
        Brocck Boeser

        Why Vancouver wants to trade any of them is baffling.

        I think Conner Garland is the Penguins 1st choice and J. T. Miller 1 A…things will need to be added but there is a lot of smoke here between he two clubs…

        Something is a brewing and it may happen soon or at the draft but this should get done before or at the draft definitely before free agency July 13th

    • Why would a team in cap trouble ever take on a back up Goalie at over 4 mill . They have a a stud young goalie right now no need absolutely brutal offer .

    • I wouldn’t trade Nylander straight across for Miller.
      Willie is barely coming into his own. He’s a star imo. Miller just may be a one hit wonder.

      • Miller’s been a one hit wonder for several seasons now, SOP.

      • I suppose. Would you make that trade?

  7. Robertson and Oettinger (above) auto-correct…ARGH!

  8. No way Devs should trade the 2 pick for Miller

  9. Miller to Boston for DeBrusk and Carlo

    • I wouldn’t make that trade. It’s not awful, but I’d rather keep my D core intact.

      • Agree SOP, no not awful, but with Grz and Mac out for few months, they need Carlo to start the year.
        The D I trade is Grz as he is redundant now with Lindholm signed.
        But he is hurt so value too low, TDL maybe.

        B’s need to shed some $, and UFA shop for help or it is whack a mole unfortunately.

  10. Re Miller to Pens

    Still hoping for a reasonable re-up of Tanger and Gino…. if that happens ; Miller likely not needed

    If Gino does not re-up; Miller would be good add at 2C but… Pens are likely out of any cup chances next year; so 1st rounder should not be on table….

    If Marino is part of the deal…. Then Friedman moves up to 2RD (not ready for that) and Sully will stubbornly stick with Ruhweedel at 3RD…. Not good

    If Gino doesn’t sign; and the trade goes for Miller…. Zucker must also go over….

    Marino, Zucker, O’Connor


    Miller and Schenn

    That trade is highly unlikely to happen because Zucker in deal screws up ‘Nucks Cap issues

    Pens need to rid Zucker and hit… buyout saves $3.5 M this year; dead cap $1.7 M in 23/24

    Better deal….

    Marino, Zucker (50% retained) ; O’Connor ….


    Miller and Schenn

    Pens net $1.9 M in Cap

    Assuming $16 M max to sign Tanger; Rackell; E-Rod ; Heinen

    Qualify Kappy (only $840 K)

    Leaves $8.3 M to sign

    1 Fwd ; 1D ; back-up

    Promote 1 WBS fwd (from Nylander, Poulin; Legare, Puust; Bjorkwist)

    Leaves $7.5 M for a UFA 2RD and a back-up…. Could be done

    Sid Guentz Rackell

    Miller Rusty; E-Rod or Heinen

    Carter, Kappy; E-Rod or Heinen

    Blueger McGinn, Zoho

    Tanger Matheson

    UFA 2RD; Pettersson

    Freidman; PO-J or Schenn


    • Pengy–
      I like that second deal with Vancouver (Zucker at 50%) Miller and Schenn give our team what we lacked in the playoffs toughness and grit.

      They knocked Rakell out, gooned Crosby enough to miss the 3rd period of game 5 and the clinching game 6 at home..

      Malkin is gone and maybe be headed to the Capitals who will need to replace Backstrom.

      I dont see your insitence keeping Kapanen he has failed twice now in Pittsburgh and while ultra talented needs a change of scenery.

      I might deal him to Vancouver one on one for Luke Schenn and we save $ 2.1 million to sign Rakell and others..

      watching lots of outlets /sources many predict MAF will return to Pittsburgh on a short one or two year deal to finish with the Penguins

      • HiBnG

        Would love Schenn …. A Kappy for Schenn doesn’t save any Cap… it actually costs an extra $10 K… so call it even

        Kappy QO is only $840 K…. Just 90K over League Min. Schenn is $850 K

        Kappy had a bad year… really can’t get worse…. But his numbers were 11-21-32…. Only 90K over Min…. AND can send him down… then no Cap hit…. Might as well give him his QO

        Zucker must go

        Not sure Malkin is gone…. They’ll try and sign Tanger first , then make Malkin an offer

        I’d like to see Rakell and E-Rod back

        If Pens can move Dumo or Pettersson (Dumo easier) ; the remaining guy stays as 2LD; P-O J becomes 3LD (Matheson/Tanger top pairing) …That move nets $3 M – $3.5M

        Move Zucker

        Now that combined $8.5 M – $9.0 M….. goes a long way towards Pens roster

  11. Maybe Miller has told the stakeholders not signing beyond this season regardless . Then trade him now. If there is a legit shot at extending you need to keep him.
    Remember that McAvoy is out so I wouldn’t trade anything from the backend off the Bruins . Bergeron only a one year deal and you need a longer term solution up the middle like Miller. I would want Lysel or another of their top prospects and DeBrusk and maybe a pick of some sort.

    • Miller for Lafreniere, Rangers go all in NOW!

  12. Honestly, there are very few trade candidates or free agents that match up well with available cap space…except for bottom dwelling teams. Do we see trades at the draft? I am not seeing much more than wishful thinking posted for most rumors. TOR, MTL, VAN rumors are particularly warped. Supposedly the rest of the league is clamoring for guys who under-performed their contracts last year or will demand any new team to magically re-jig their entire salary structure.
    Do we see free agents taking big $$ but accept the fact that the next few years are not going to be on serious contenders?
    At best, I see teams trading almost-there prospects for draft picks.

  13. It might just be me but people seem to think Miller only has only had 1 good season. Generational? No, but elite, I dare say. He does have 282p in 296 games in his last 5 years. Consintency will probably not be an issue for the next 4 years. Anything after that…. Do you think you got a legitimate shot at winning in the next 5 years. If the answer is yes go for it, if not stay away. The guy deserves whatever raise he is about to get. Timing is what is important here. Montreal, Ottawa, San jose . bad idea. LA, Rangers, devils on the rise or Florida with the window closing strong yes.
    Also does anyone know Mrazeck health condition? Is he ready to play?

  14. DeBrusk for L Crouse

    • Not even close Joe.

      Would need to add alot, this kid is for real and the yotes wont let him go.