NHL Rumor Mill – February 10, 2023
What’s next for the Blues and Rangers following the Tarasenko trade? How does that move affect the trade market for Patrick Kane? What’s the latest on Timo Meier and Tyler Bertuzzi? Find out in today’s NHL Rumor Mill.
WHAT NEXT FOR THE BLUES AND RANGERS?
ST. LOUIS POST-DISPATCH: Jim Thomas reports Blues general manager Doug Armstrong said the franchise has reached the end of an era by trading winger Vladimir Tarasenko to the New York Rangers on Thursday.
Armstrong didn’t rule out making other moves if they make sense leading up to the March 3 trade deadline. He also wants to see how his players respond in the coming weeks to the Tarasenko trade.
SPECTOR’S NOTE: The status of Blues forwards Ryan O’Reilly, Ivan Barbashev and Noel Acciari remains uncertain. Like Tarasenko, the trio are slated to become unrestricted free agents on July 1 and have been the subject of growing trade speculation as the trade deadline draws near.
TSN’s Darren Dreger believes the trade market is heating up for Barbashev. He’ll also be watching to see what happens with O’Reilly when he returns to action later this month. Dreger isn’t ruling out the possibility of O’Reilly re-signing with the Blues.
NEW YORK POST: Larry Brooks reports Rangers GM Chris Drury might not be done dealing after acquiring Tarasenko. They’ll have around $1.6 million in cap space once Libor Hajek either clears waivers today or is claimed by another club before noon ET. Brooks speculates Drury could look at bolstering the fourth line or the defense before deadline day.
HOW WILL THE TARASENKO TRADE AFFECT THE MARKET FOR PATRICK KANE?
THE ATHLETIC: Mark Lazerus and Scott Powers looked at potential trade destinations for Patrick Kane following the Rangers’ acquisition of Tarasenko yesterday. The Vegas Golden Knights, Carolina Hurricanes, Los Angeles Kings, Colorado Avalanche and Dallas Stars were among their suggested options, provided the Blackhawks retain half of the 34-year-old winger’s $10.5 million cap hit. They also didn’t rule out the possibility of a third team getting involved to broker a deal and spread the cap dollars around.
NBC SPORTS CHICAGO: Charlie Roumeliotis noted a report by ESPN’s Emily Kaplan that the Rangers felt the asking prices for Patrick Kane and San Jose Sharks winger Timo Meier were too high. They also had some concerns over Kane’s reported hip injury but Roumeliotis felt that was overblown, pointing out it’s an ailment that the winger’s been dealing with for years. He believes the decline in Kane’s production this season is due to the Blackhawks’ deplete lineup.
TSN: Chris Johnston believes the odds of Kane leaving Chicago by the trade deadline got slimmer with the Rangers’ acquisition of Tarasenko. He pointed out there’s only a small handful of teams that the winger considers acceptable trade destinations and the Rangers were thought to be among them.
CHICAGO SUN-TIMES: Ben Pope believes the return that the Blues got for Tarasenko throws cold water on the possibility of the Blackhawks getting a first-round pick and a top prospect for Kane. He also noted that Jonathan Toews’ recent illness could affect his value in the trade market.
SPECTOR’S NOTE: Kane and Toews are reportedly supposed to make their decision by mid-February on whether to waive their no-movement clauses. It’ll be interesting to see if the Tarasenko trade prompts Blackhawks management to press Kane for a decision before then.
Pope speculated that Western Conference clubs like the Dallas Stars, Los Angeles Kings and Vegas Golden Knights are still “theoretically logical fits for Kane”. However, he also thinks the Tarasenko return may have set the market for the Blackhawks star.
THE LATEST ON TIMO MEIER
TSN: Pierre LeBrun believes the Tarasenko trade could increase the chances of the San Jose Sharks trading winger Timo Meier before the trade deadline. If an extension is to be part of a trade, LeBrun believes this will have to be done a few days before March 3.
There’s also sufficient interest in Meier that the Sharks have a good idea of his value in the trade market. LeBrun said the New Jersey Devils and Carolina Hurricanes remain very keen on the Sharks winger but there is interest from other clubs as well. He thinks a Meier trade will take place before March 3.
SPECTOR’S NOTE: The Tarasenko trade will encourage clubs with an interest in Meier to move more quickly now. Sharks GM Mike Grier could be hoping for a bidding war as that’ll dive up the potential return.
The Devils have the depth in promising young assets to tempt the Sharks. The Hurricanes have sufficient trade deadline cap space to take his entire cap hit off the Sharks’ books for the remainder of this season.
RED WINGS GETTING CALLS ABOUT BERTUZZI
TSN: Darren Dreger reports the Detroit Red Wings are getting calls on Tyler Bertuzzi. The 27-year-old winger is slated to become an unrestricted free agent on July 1. He’s struggled through injuries this season but reached 30 goals last season. Dreger said Wings GM Steve Yzerman is weighing his options to decide if the Wings are better off trading Bertuzzi or signing him to an extension.
SPECTOR’S NOTE: I think Bertuzzi’s going to be traded. Yzerman’s main focus seems to be on getting pending UFA center Dylan Larkin under contract.