NHL Rumor Mill – January 31, 2023

by | Jan 31, 2023 | Rumors | 67 comments

Do the Islanders have more to do after acquiring Bo Horvat? Will this trade spur the Bruins and Capitals to go shopping in the trade market? Find out in today’s NHL Rumor Mill.


THE ATHLETIC: Following the New York Islanders’ acquisition of Bo Horvat yesterday, Kevin Kurz felt they have more to do if they hope to contend for the Stanley Cup this season. He believes the move doesn’t resolve their depth issue, especially after trading Anthony Beauvillier and Aatu Raty to bring in Horvat.

Vancouver Canucks trade Bo Horvat to the New York Islanders (NHL Images).

Kurz points out that Oliver Wahlstrom remains sidelined with an injured knee since Dec. 27 while Cal Clutterbuck is listed as out indefinitely. With approximately $9 million in trade deadline cap space, the Islanders have room to add another forward, particularly one that goes to the front of the net.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Cap Friendly shows the Islanders currently carry $11.3 million in accrued cap space by deadline day. That could fluctuate depending on potential call-ups or demotions but they should still have sufficient room to make another addition if necessary.

Finding sufficient trade assets to add another noteworthy player could become a problem for the Islanders. They’ve traded away their 2023 first-rounder and their third-rounder could end up belonging to the Coyotes as part of the conditions of shipping Andrew Ladd to Arizona in 2021.

In the Horvat deal, they also included one of their better prospects in Raty. Potential trade partners could ask for William Dufour or Calle Odelius.

NBC SPORTS BOSTON: Nick Goss noted the Bruins were rumored to be interested in Horvat before he was shipped to the Islanders. He believes they need another goal-scorer on the wings or a middle-six center with a left-hand shot.

Options could include Arizona Coyotes center Nick Bjugstad, Columbus Blue Jackets Gustav Nyquist, St. Louis Blues forward Ivan Barbashev, and Chicago Blackhawks forward Max Domi.

THE ATHLETIC: Fluto Shinzawa included those players in his list of trade targets for the Bruins. He also mentioned the Blue Jackets’ Jack Roslovic and the Blues’ Ryan O’Reilly along with the Detroit Red Wings’ Oskar Sundqvist, San Jose Sharks Kevin Labanc and the Florida Panthers’ Colin White.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Apart from O’Reilly, the aforementioned players would be affordable trade options in terms of salary and return for the Bruins, who currently have $4 million in projected deadline cap space. That cap space could shrink substantially when winger Jake DeBrusk comes off LTIR later this season.

The Bruins will probably have to get creative to acquire O’Reilly. That could involve getting a third team involved to broker the deal and spread O’Reilly’s $7.5 million cap hit around.

BOSTON HOCKEY NOW: Speaking of the Bruins, Jimmy Murphy cited Sportsnet’s Elliotte Friedman speculating the Bruins could add to their left defense. However, he considers it highly unlikely that they’ll part with DeBrusk or right-shot defenseman Brandon Carlo.

WASHINGTON HOCKEY NOW: Sammi Silber doesn’t expect the Capitals to follow the Islanders’ example and swing a major trade for an impact forward. She pointed out they could have 14 healthy forwards when they return from the All-Star break.

The Capitals have little space to work with unless they intend to move a forward like Anthony Mantha or Lars Eller. Silber noted that the trade value isn’t high for those two as they’ve been struggling to produce.

Silber doesn’t see the Capitals chasing a big-ticket forward. Instead, they need someone like the Montreal Canadiens’ Joel Edmundson or the LA Kings’ Matt Roy to provide a solid presence and leadership on the blueline.


  1. Wonder if Schenn to the Caps is possible. Sure the Canucks would like a few of their prospects or a good pick.

    • Hi Gordie,
      I think there is a very good possibility Both the Caps and the Pens miss the Playoffs❗️
      After yesterdays trade…. NYI & Buffalo taking 7th & 8th Spot…🤔

      NYI bigest problem was they could not Score, Lou fixed that getting a #1 Centre, but they are not done trading, they still have $2.5M in cap space and lots of picks and prospects

      • So, willieW, you think that, just by adding Horvat, the NYI will jump from being a .514 team over 52 gp to a .750 one for their final 30 games – putting them in the class of Boston and Carolina?

        I don’t think so. Both Washington and Pittsburgh still have way more firepower than NYI, and with Backstrom back the Capitals will start to play more consistently, with Wilson not far behind.

      • It’s not really hard to believe that one or both the Capitals and Penguins can miss the playoffs. Buffalo is one point behind the Pens and two points behind the Caps. Buffalo also has three games in hand on the Caps.
        The Islanders are two points behind the Pens and three points behind the Caps. Their issue is the Pens have three games in hand on them.
        With the firepower that the Caps and Pens have, the Islanders and Sabers have been able to keep pace with them. With the Islanders improving their lineup with Horvat, they just might be able to pass one or both of those teams.

      • Islanders have next to zero picks and prospects really . I don’t see how they are able to add a player with enough of an impact for the Islanders to make the playoffs. However , anything is possible if you have D and goaltending like Sorokin.

  2. There is NO way the Bruins will be in on ROR !!!

    The Leafs might make Kerfoot available – what a hall – he would bring

    • If that was a kerfoot for hall trade proposal….nicely done

    • Hi George,
      the NYI are in the top 10/11 in Goals against
      and top 10 in lowest amount of goal Scored,

      7 of there last 10 game they ether Won by 1 Goal or Lost by 1 Goal…..
      They need fire power these guys, Lou will make more trades in the next month once he sees how Bo fits in first,
      if its not working and he is not getting Signed …🤔they will trade him before the dead line…

      I still think in 7th & 8th Spot its Buffalo and NYI are in…..
      I wonder if Kevin Adams will be active at the trade deadline ….The Sabers have $18.M in cap space right now and have 3X2nd round pick to spend for the 2023 draft……..❓

      • willieW, I am not suggesting that the Islanders – whose smothering defensive approach keeps them close in most of their games – hasn’t improved their offense with the addition of Horvat. All I’m asking is, is he enough to increase their points % from 0.521 – established over 52 gp – to an 0.750 pace over their final 30 games in order to reach 100 points? (and with the improvement of so many of last year’s bottom dwellers in the East I don’t believe 100 is as much of an “anomaly” as some suggest).

        That sort of jump would put them in a class with Boston and Carolina in terms of points % – does the addition of one F do that?

  3. Who would want either of Boeser or Garland & what could they fetch?

    • The way those two are playing and their contracts, other teams would see it as Vancouver salary dumps, so I do not think Canuck fans will be happy with either return.

  4. Evgeny Dadanov would be a player the Isles should be interested in. He obviously hasn’t worked out with the rebuilding Habs, but he’s be able to add some scoring depth for the Isles. At this point, they could probably get him for a 4th rounder and if he doesn’t work out his contract is up at seasons end anyway.

  5. I am wondering if Larkin became available, as to what the Bruins would give for him.

    • Don’t see the Wings letting that happen.

      • i bet if they can’t sign Horvat by the deadline they will move him. and why is Sweeney so against moving Carlo? he is slow can’t move the puck won’t play to his size and is one hit away from wearing a helmet the rest of his life

    • I don’t know if the Broons have enough goods to get him.

      I just hope the Wings get enough for him!

      I love how much he’s helped in the rebuild, but he is NOT a #1 Center. And he is NOT worth $8 mill, let alone the apparent $9 mill+ I’ve heard rumors of!

    • Bruins don’t have the pieces for Larkin, Even as a rental Yzerman would want Carlo and Lysell at least and their 1st and 2nd probably take on DeBrusk as well.

      People need to get over Detroit trading Larkin because it’s just not happening. Yzerman will let Larkin walk before dealing him.

      Yzerman said that he has until June 30th to sign Larkin, So a deal will get done.

      • That’s just silly. Larkin would never fetch a haul like that.

      • Hilarious.

  6. Now Bo Horvat is traded & Team’s have gone back to the drawing board to figure out there next move regarding Centre needs….

    Who would look good in Boston..❓
    do they go with a B centre and wait till F/A kicks in July to go after one…..

    A grade Centres Left… =2
    if horvate got a 1st, a good prospect & a player
    what are these guys worth..🤔
    Or is Bo A Rental player…?
    2-Ryan O’Reilly

    B-grade Centres we know are out there that could abe a 2nd rd pick…
    1- Max Domi,
    2- Ivan Barbashev,
    3- Jack Roslovic

    • My thoughts exactly!

      I think this trade set the bar for Larkin and O’REILLY, as well as numerous others.

      As for Boston…as long as it doesn’t disrupt the room, make a tweak or two. Otherwise, let the Juggernaut alone. If it ain’t broke, no need to fix it!

      No…I’m not a Bruins fan!

      • You’re kidding right.

        Horvat trade didn’t set the bar for anyone.
        Vancouver got royally screwed in that deal. Beauvillier was a cap dump to fit in Horvat.
        I’m sorry but Raty is massively overhyped he’s really not all that good. And a top 12 protected 1st so basically 13th to 16th if the Islanders don’t make the playoffs. Larkin as rental will return a far better offer than that.

      • More than a mid to late first b prospect and a cap dump/reclamation project ? That’s about what top rentals go for.

    • willieW – re “or is Bo a rental player?”

      Unless Lou has other improvements in the mill – and soon – there is no way the addition of Horvat alone suddenly turns them from a notch above a .500 team to one capable of playing at a .750 pace down the stretch. NO way.

      It’s therefore more plausible that, either Lou has reason to believe he can get Horvat’s signature on a new deal for the the future OR he has plans to flip him for a better haul than the one he just gave up – and closer to TD Day when the bidding could get fierce.

      • George, I read Lous comments yesterday and I believe he said something about this move not just about this season but also for future. Curious who plays wing out of Horvat, Barzal, and Pageau. Also, will Lou look to move Pageau in off dragon? Will alou still have a job if aisles miss playoffs?

      • Why do the Islanders need to play at a .750 pace down the stretch? They are only three points from the first wild card spot? With the addition of Horvat, they are fully capable of doing that. Not saying they will, but it certainly can be done.

      • Simple math Kevjam. Right now the Isles have 55 points out of the 104 pts available to them over the 52 games played so far – which works out to a 0.529 % pace. If, like last season, 100 pts becomes the cut-off for the last WC spot in the East, they would need to get 45 pts out of the 60 pts available to them over their final 30 games, which works out to a 0.750 pace from here to the end. That’s a % increase of 0.221.

        Pittsburgh would need to play at a 0.650 % pace – a bump of just 0.070% – Buffalo would need to play at a 0.667 pace – a bump of just 0.096 – while Washington would need to play at a 0.700 pace – a bump of 0.142 in their case.

        In each case that’s significantly less than the increase need by NYI.

        Of course, who each plays over the final games, not to mention who has the most – or least – back-t-backs and, of course, injuries will also be prime factors.

      • A quick glance at their final 30 games shows 15 at home – 15 on the road, with one nack-to-back on Feb 17/18 = at home to Pittsburgh – on the road in Boston

        Their away games are Philadelphia (1), Montreal (1), Boston (1), Pittsburgh (2), Winnipeg (1), Minnesota (1), L.A. (1),Anaheim (1), San Jose (1), Columbus (1), Washington (2), Tampa Bay (1), Carolina (1)

        Their home games are Seattle (1), Ottawa (1), Pittsburgh (1), Winnipeg (1), L.A. (1), Detroit (1), Buffalo (2), Vancouver (1), Washington (1), Toronto (1), NJ (1), Tampa Bay (1), Philadelphia (1), Montreal (1)

      • That 100 points last season was an anomaly. From what I have heard the projected cut-off in the East is 96 points.
        Right now the Caps and Islanders have played 52 games. In the next 30 games, the Islanders only need to increase their win percentage by .029. With Horvat that is very likely do able.
        That is the way I see it.

      • Hi George

        Your math bears out if in fact 100 points turns out to be the door to the playoffs in the East…, 610 clip or better after 82 games

        As at now; none of the EWC (or below) are at that

        It just may end up that the cut off this year is 98 or 97

        Current pace in %…

        Pens 58; needing balance of year 62 % to get to 98; 61% (for 97)

        Same set of numbers (current %, % bal total of year needed for 98; then 97….

        Sabres 57%,64%,62%
        Caps 56%,67%,%65%
        Isles 53%, 73%, 72%
        Cats 52%, 73%, 72%

        barring major trades; or major injuries; with recent play; Sabres…. I think , appear more likely than the other 4, to get in

        The other 4 all have a shot

        Put it another way

        Lets say Pens AND Sabres lose next 3 in reg; while Ilses and Cats win next 3 (I haven’t looked at whether any will f the 4 play each other…meaning 4 point games; but this is just to show the outcome)…. Then from that point onward to get to 98….

        Pens would need a 68% clip; isles 69% ; and both Sabres and Cats would need 70% clips…. Tight range

        Nothing cut in stone yet

      • That’s all I was saying, Pengy – if 100 points is again the cut-off – sure, it may be lower – then again it may not. At his stage who can say otherwise and based on what?

    • williew

      Curious how you state that Roslovic ($4M) is considered a B grade C but Kerfoot ($3.5M) is considered by many as undesirable.

      They both score at roughly the same rate. Kerfoot gets next to no PP time in TOR.

      Isn’t Barbashev a LW?

      • On Cap Friendly Barbashev is listed as a LW, RW, and C. Daily Faceoff has him on the second line LW. Hockey DB has him listed as a centre. So who really knows. LOL

      • He sure doesn’t take many draws for a C, only 125 so far this year. Losing 79 of them.
        As a comparison on STL, Thomas has taken 759.

      • The Penguins can’t defend or get a save consistently. That’s why even just a little more offence for the Isles is enough. The issue is resigning Horvath going forward. Gonna cost them 8-9 million for a career 60 point guy. They’re already over paying Pageau. And I like Pageau.

    • I believe they need a winger who can supplement scoring and a d man like Shenn to give some added depth

    • I think the Canes are going to go hard after a C . Thing is , they hardly ever go the high end rental route , so I am not sure if O’Reilly makes sense . But…. if the Canes think they are a O’Reilly away from the Cup … maybe they do go that route. I just can’t see them winning the cup with their current C depth. After Aho they have … a wooden legged Staal.

      As a Devils fan , I am very happy that the Canes did not get Horvat . Now Devils just need everyone to stay away from Meier. Hands off , he’s ours !!

    • Shoreorrpark,

      I doubt Detroit would accept that package for Larkin. Carlo is damaged goods, Debrusk is a 3rd line winger,Lysell is not quite an A prospect, and Bostons 1st & 2nd are really a glorified 2nd & 3rd. No thank you.

  7. Yesterday, looking at the East and what points % each would need to reach 100 points – which was the WC cut-off last year n the East, I showed the current % pace for each team and what % pace they would need to reach 100.

    In the West last year the % cut-off was 97 but in looking at what those teams are doing from a % aspect to date this year, and what each would need to perform at the rest of this season to reach 97, it’s clear that the cut-off is going to be somewhat lower – probably more like 90 points.

    The West’s Top 6 are
    Team – Current % – % Needed To Qualify
    Dallas – 0.647 – 0.500
    Seattle – 0.643 – 0.515
    Winnipeg – 0.625 – 0.548
    Vegas – 0.608 – 0.565
    Minnesota – 0.604 – 0.574
    Edmonton – 0.600 – 0.578

    As for the rest of the West here are their current % Paces and what they’d need the rest of the way in order to reach 97:

    Los Angeles – 0.596 – 0.583 – a decrease of 0.013
    Colorado – 0.594 – 0.588 – a decrease of 0.006
    Calgary – 0.570 – 0.625 – an increase of 0.055
    Nashville – 0.563 – 0.632 – an increase of 0.069
    St. Louis – 0.480 – 0.774 – an increase of 0.294
    Vancouver – 0.439 – 0.818 – an increase 0.379
    San Jose – 0.402 – 0.903 – an increase of 0.501
    Arizona – 0.380 – 0.922 – an increase of 0.542
    Anaheim – 0.370 – 0.958 – an increase of 0.588
    Chicago – 0.354 – 0.927 – an increase 0f 0.573

    There could be an interesting race for the two WC slots out West with 4 teams in the mix, but from St. Louis down their seasons are essentially over and now it becomes a question of who gets the best % shot at Bedard.

    For easy comparison, I have repeated the East situation here:

    Team – Current % – % Needed To Qualify
    Boston – 0.810 – 0.297
    Carolina – 0.735 – 0.424
    Toronto – 0.686 – 0.484
    New Jersey – 0.694 – 0.485
    Tampa Bay – 0.677 – 0.515
    NYR – 0.633 – 0.576

    The one team in that grouping that could, possibly, fall off enough to make it interesting for them reaching 100 is the Rangers as the fall-off would only need to be 0.066.

    As for the rest of the East here are their current % Paces and what they’d need the rest of the way in order to reach 100:

    Pittsburgh – 0.582 – 0.652 – an increase of 0.70
    Buffalo – 0.571 – 0.667 – an increase of 0.96
    Washington – 0.558 – 0,700 – an increase of 0.142
    Detroit – 0.521 – 0.735 – an increase of 0.214
    NYI – 0.529 – 0.750 – an increase of 0.221
    Florida – 0.519 – 0.767 – an increase 0.248
    Ottawa – 0.500 – 0.773 – an increase of 0.273
    Philadelphia – 0.500 – 0,790 – an increase of 0.290
    Montreal – 0.440 – 0.875 – an increase of 0.435
    Columbus – 0.330 – 1.047 – an increase 0f 0.717

    • Thanks George! I mainly just read this site, but when I have time to comment (to get ridiculed for trade suggestions 🙃) I will!

      Thanks for doing the extra work! I’m sure Lyle appreciates it!

    • I’ll put $5 on CBJ getting to 100, if anyone on the list can win 105% of their remaining games it’s them.

  8. Bruins should stand pat. Maybe Schenn from Vancouver if he’s available.

    Save the space for next year for Nylander and / or Sillinger. If all else fails, go crazy and buy Matthews for 7 years, but the more I think about it, the more I can see him staying in Hogtown.
    Stay away from O’Reilly and Larkin.

    • Hi SOP

      I hate to (as a Leafs and Pens fan)…. But yes; small low cost tweak with Schenn…. Great move for Bruins

      I wish the other black/gold/white team could get Schenn

      Re Mathews on Bruins…. My gut says Kraken more likely to be his employer in July of ‘24

      Sillinger? Havng a rough song hmore year; but I’d think Jarmo would take a wait and see for a potential rebound next year

      He’s inly 19 (could have played at this year’s World Jrs)

    • No matter how you shake it, the Bruins need to get bigger on the back end, and preference would be someone that is a UFA at years end. If they can get rid of a guy like Grez all the better to me.

      I also think they need to get one F that can help add to the scoring.

      • Hey GG, what’s wrong with Grzylcyk? I’m not a Bruins fan but I am a long-time poolie guy who has noticed that Gryzlcyk but most numerical measures is having a decent year. Does the eye-test tell a different story? I find that the numbers only go so far and then eyes on how a guy plays can tell more to the story. Any insight would be appreciated.

  9. SOP, are you projecting Nylander as a centre? Wouldn’t that be Boston’s biggest need next year?

    • Yes, sir. I’d put Willy at pivot between Pasta and March if Saint Patrice and Krech both retire.

  10. Next up will be the Blackhawks.

    Would the Penguins be interested in Kane?
    If the Blackhawks retained 50% the Penguins could offer this years 1st and 3rd and next years 1st along with Zucker for cap purposes.

    • Flamefan

      I don’t see Kane waiving his NMC to go to the Pens who are precariously close to missing the playoffs.

      PIT has a very shalllow prospect pool. They should hang on to their picks

      • Daryl,

        You are probably right, but as we get closer to the deadline it is possible that Hextall / Burke get antsy to go for it one more time.

      • Two firsts plus the rest is a bit steep. Unless there is a huge bidding war and Kane would have to authorize that instead of only naming one or two teams he’ll go to. Plus hextall has a track record of not moving top picks.

    • Hi FF, Daryl, Chrisms

      Would I like Kane in Pens… ‘course


      Kane to Pens highly unlikely….

      1) Pens shouldn’t be bidding huge on top 6 winger… 3C is primary need in an add

      2) Agree… Kane waving to go to Pens…. Slim chance

      3) HexBurkie have done jack so far…. Homerun move to outbid others…. Hard to conceive

      If HexBurkie talking to BlackHawks…. Find out cost re Toews or Domi (3C over Carter)

  11. SOP has always liked the idea of Nylander centring Pastranak

    Aside from that – Back to Canuck Shuffle – Demko would be a nice pickup for the Sabres

  12. I bet Dubas is glad Horvart was not traded to the Bruin or Lightning lol

    • Not yet anyway.

    • Ny and pasta are good buds as well

  13. Bruins don’t need any big ticket names. They need 2 gritty players one on D and one forward that’s it. Jake will be back soon and the offense will be fine. So glad we didn’t get Bo

  14. JVR may fit in nicely with the isles, shouldn’t cost much even with salary retained.
    He can play middle 6 and PP1

  15. As usual, JBB & the lightning fly well below the trade radar, and have no cap space, so can’t do anything useful, just like last year & the year before, & the year before that. On a 12 Game Home win streak they may not need much; the first round in the East should be must watch hockey. A thought, the Leafs need to decide who their goalie is, and play 5 man defence in front of him to break the jinx….it’s not a trade thing.

    • Yes they do Richard.
      While I appreciate all the luv my B’s get on here of late, TB is the team to beat in the East until somebody does.
      They beat my B’s last week and they deserved the win.
      They have arguably the best D man in the league, strong at C, elite scoring, tough, and experienced. And oh yeah, the best playoff tender in the NHL.

      I think I just talked myself into the B’s need to add some quality at the TDL?

      • Bang on, Ray. Hedman is the best all-around defenseman, in my opinion. Vasy the best tender, and they are the deepest through the middle, and they are definitely the toughest squad in the league……..next to Minny.

      • Ray. I will have to disagree
        As Bruin best Tampa 2 vs the last win for Tampa that was caused by a missed huge face off violation for the bolts 2nd goal and the winner by hedman was caused by Carlo running into Ullmark. Canes are the team that could maybe throw a monkey wrench in bruins plans

      • It was a good competitive game MB4, one of the best I have watched all year. I thought the Bolts took it to them in the 3rd and out chanced by a pretty big margin on a whole. Especially the HD type.

        I have been on the don’t go big at the TDL for the most part this year, but that game showed how close they are, and IMO the Bolts are just getting it rolling and are the team to beat. Because they haven’t been beat in the East for 3 straight years. Basically the same guys lining up against each other again.

        B’s are playing well in every area of the game, so adding pushes somebody down that is playing well. And chemistry matters. But this year feels like the end for Bergy and Krecji, maybe the right call is to go big.

        I dunno, really tough call. In Sweeney we trust.

  16. Horvat is a career 55 point per season average very good 2way center having his best season. Not sure he is an 8 million dollar #1C. The team he was captaining was underachieving( i know that defense is not so hot…)

    Until he decides where to sign it is hard to know who wins this trade.

  17. Just like Lou the Isles continue to just get older. As an Isles fan I thought they should move some of their aging pieces and start to retool. They may make the playoffs but are the structured to beat Boston or Tampa? Not really. I thought they could have gotten something for Mayfield, Nelson, heck even Palmeiri might have gotten a pick back.

    • @styxcanada
      If the Isles can sneak into the playoffs they are not an easy out.
      #1 they have the goalie
      #2 the center depth

      A pure dangerous sniper ala Meier seemed the more logical move even if the cost was greater…in my opinion

      • I think Lou settles on a Bertuzzi rather than a Meier.