NHL Rumor Mill – March 29, 2023

by | Mar 29, 2023 | Rumors | 20 comments

Speculation over Mark Scheifele’s future with the Jets resurfaces plus the latest on the Blue Jackets in today’s NHL Rumor Mill.


WINNIPEG FREE PRESS: Mike McIntyre recently observed Jets first-line center Mark Scheifele’s offensive struggles have contributed to the club’s slide in the standings in recent weeks.

Winnipeg Jets center Mark Scheifele (NHL Images).

After being benched in the second period of a 5-3 loss to the Carolina Hurricanes on March 14, Scheifele responded with no goals and one assist in the seven games since then while appearing less engaged than ever. McIntyre noted the similarities with the Jets’ fading performances in 2018-19 and last season when Scheifele’s performance was also a big issue.

Scheifele’s play is a big reason why there are rumblings around the league that the Jets could undergo a major makeover this offseason, especially with Scheifele, Blake Wheeler, Connor Hellebuyck and Pierre-Luc Dubois all a year away from unrestricted free agency. “Maybe that’s for the best,” writes McIntyre, who doubted the Jets could do any damage even if they squeak into the playoffs.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: I believed this season was going to be a make-or-break one for the current Jets roster. They looked so good during the first half of the season but they’ve definitely lost their mojo now. As McIntyre pointed out, that’s on their best players, especially those like Scheifele among their leadership group.

General manager Kevin Cheveldayoff must finally accept that the Jets have gone as far as they can with this core and make changes. Scheifele and Wheeler are most likely to go, as well as Dubois if he’s unwilling to sign a long-term extension.

Cheveldayoff could be reluctant to move Hellebuyck as reliable starting goalies are hard to find these days. Nevertheless, he should also determine whether the former Vezina Trophy winner still fits within the Jets’ long-term plans.

I don’t see Cheveldayoff parting with Kyle Connor, Nikolaj Ehlers or Josh Morrissey as they still have several years remaining on their respective contracts. If he’s looking at a quick turnaround he can build around that trio with promising talent already on the roster like Cole Perfetti and the kids in their pipeline like Chaz Lucius, Rutger McGroarty and Brad Lambert.


THE ATHLETIC: In a recent mailbag segment, Aaron Porztline was asked if the Columbus Blue Jackets might attempt to trade Jack Roslovic this summer even if the return wasn’t that appealing.

Portzline believes the center position will change for the Blue Jackets this summer with Dmitry Voronkov coming over from Russia and the possibility of adding a high-quality center in this year’s draft. That means they won’t have to get a center in return for Roslovic. He speculates their recent move of Patrik Laine to center and Roslovic to the wing might be about showcasing the latter in that position to prospective trade partners.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Part of the reason the Winnipeg Jets included Roslovic in the Laine trade to Columbus was his unhappiness about playing wing. He could draw interest as a versatile third-liner in this summer’s trade market but the inconsistency and defensive lapses in his game that Portzline mentions will hurt his value.

Portzline doesn’t see the Jackets drawing from their deep prospect pool for trade bait to acquire a top center, especially since such players are difficult to find in the trade and free-agent markets.


  1. Rosy not only prefers playing center, he’s at his most productive playing there. That said, the Jackets quite possibly go from scrambling for centers to being overloaded with centers. Hunter McKown has played a very solid 3rd line center since signing as a college free agent. Theoretically, the Jackets could have Kuraly, Roslovic, Jenner, McKown, Sillinger, Johnson and a 1st round draft pick able to play center.

    • They could take a run at JT Miller, is signed, even if the contract will look bad in 4-5 years. By then he could move to the wing and the Canucks need to send money out

  2. Some may look at Mark Scheifele as the main root of uninspired play by the Jets and not saying that isn’t part of it, but for me there is a bigger concern.

    The Coach!

    Time for Rick Bowness to stop throwing everyone of his star players under the bus.

    It’s almost become like a misdirection, yes the media love him because he open and transparent.

    I doubt the players ie Wheeler, Scheifele, Connor and Ehlers like the constant bashing in the media.

    He suppose to be a great communicator…. to who the media?

    Then go communicate with the players privately not publicly.

    The daily media bashing of your team seem like he finding excuses for reasons that are his and his alone.

    • WPG have been underachievers with that lineup for 5+ seasons….. Maurice walked away. something off in that group

    • Two coaches in two seasons and the same issue with the team. The problem is not the coach.
      Fans like to get on coaches who criticize players in the media. The only time this is done is when the team is struggling. Why do teams struggle? Their best players aren’t playing up to their potential. If a coach is coming out to the media, that probably means they have already done everything else they can and the media is the last resort.
      Coaches on good teams don’t need to go to this level because their top players are being just that, their top players.

    • This is what I wrote about yesterday when the subject was Dubois to Montreal.
      Jets need to prep for a retool so better grab as many young assets ready for the NHL now because players like Wheeler and Scheffle are hard to replace.
      Trade PLD to Montreal ,get a 2nd , a 3rd ,Jordan Harris and Jesse Ylonen maybe Owen Beck and at least you have a promising young team with veteran presence

      • Jack, as has been said many times by others here, why would Montreal give up multiple assets for PLD when they can wait a year? PLD will not by himself accelerate the Habs’ rebuild.

        The only way I can see the Habs parting with assets is that (1) the Jets realize they will have to sell lower than they want (2) the Habs and PLD agree to a contract extension as part of the trade.

  3. Agree that Bones is too player friendly. But then throws them under the bus when the team starts derailing. He needs a little more Torts in him. He babied Benn and Seguin which turned them soft. Then threw them under the bus when the team was struggling.

    • Starsfan, he has already lost the room; if i was Chevy i fire Bowness today and go hire a guy like Marc Savard.

      Save the season before it’s to late.

      • As a human being, i think Bones is a super nice guy. As a coach, i think he is better suited as an assistant, like he was for much of his career. I used to joke that players who play for Brind’amor would skate through a brick wall for him. And the guys who played for Bowness would invite him to their child’s birthday party.

    • Two coaches in the two seasons and the team still has the same issue. The problem is not the coach. That core has a big issue. I agree with Lyle, Conners, Ehlers, and Morrissey are the untouchables.

  4. My view is that elite 1C level talent remains a pressing need for CBJ. The McKown signing and Voronkov coming over from the KHL are both potentially strong additions to C depth. Sillinger had a tough 2nd year but is still a promising prospect w/ the potential to develop into a strong 2C. I was sincerely hoping Roslovic would take a big step forward this season but the inconsistency and defensive lapses detracts from the elite speed and flashes of offensive upside. For right or wrong, Portzline has reported that the CBJ coaches apparently don’t feel KJ is ready to play C full-time & they prefer to be able to shift Jenner to W despite the admirable job he has done in the middle (perhaps an effort to manage his workload/minutes and keep him healthy/fresh). Not sure if that is Porty’s informed reporting or speculating. Lottery luck that lands them Bedard, Fantilli, or Carlson (I am hoping for Bedard but would love CBJ to land any of the 3) would be franchise altering. The buzz about interest in Hayes as a vet presence/bridge C until the kids are ready keeps being affirmed by legitimate insiders so apparently that, or a similar offseason move, may be in the works. Here’s hoping for the lottery luck to land the generational talent 1C that CBJ has never had in the history of the franchise…May 8th will be huge for this team

    • I honestly hope that Jarmo stays away from Hayes. Besides everyone I listed above, Laine keeps talking about playing center. Plus they have Boone, Gaudreau, Gudbranson and some young veterans to provide leadership. Hayes would only be a blockage to young players making the roster.

      • Agreed Paul. I’m not really sold on Hayes either but all the buzz does suggest they are planning to add a vet C. Pagnotta recently reported on the Hayes to CBJ rumor that PHL is going to retain significantly and the return is very modest. So if CBJ can get Hayes for C depth at a modest asset cost and a cap hit in the neighborhood of $4.8 (at a 1/3 retention), I suppose I am more comfortable with it. I anticipate LA’s 1st rd pick will be in play for a trade, but not sure if that will be used for a D man or if they go the FA route (Graves perhaps?). I do anticipate a busy, interesting offeason for CBJ

      • I don’t care if Philly retains 50% and only asks a 3rd round pick. As soon as Johnson and whomever gets taken with one of the top 4 picks are ready to be full time centers, Hayes is in the way. Which means that Jarmo will have to find someone to take him in a trade. Which, I guarantee, the Jackets will not get anything close to what they gave to get him. Don’t rush the rebuild. If they get lucky and get the first overall pick, the only question is who gets moved to the wing to make room for Bedard.
        Jarmo has done very good on selling the rebuild, as evidenced by the fact that most home games are total sell outs despite the terrible season. Why try to rush it just when the next wave of talented kids is maturing and the third wave is getting ready to push for roster spots?

  5. 🍁Jets need to do some house cleaning Big time 100% the past few years has been brutal.. ❗️

    They are coach Killers, the GM did not do anything to get good players for the playoff stretch,
    Now they have been playing like they dont care yet again.

    Maybe its time for a NEW GM for the Jets …❓
    time for Kevin Cheveldayoff to Go…

    Mark Scheifele…..M-NTC
    Blake Wheeler… NTC
    Connor Hellebuyck.. will be in Demand…open
    Pierre-Luc Dubois…. open

    Are all a year away from unrestricted free agency……
    Its just the Wrong mix there for the Jets

    Start the Re-build Now…..✔️

    Maurice walked away. something is 100% Not Working out there

  6. Connor Morrissey and Ehlers are the core. The old one is rotten.
    Chevy not quick to act. There is a saying hold off for as long as you have to and he does. Re Trouba blue print . Rinse and repeat Dubois.

  7. I was Reading tonight The Sen’s Cam Talbot
    is Looking for a Contract Similar toThe Oilers 30yr old Jack Cambell’s $5.M contract PA…..⁉️⁉️

    He has been out injured Again for the 3rd or 4th time this season😳
    Games played over the past 5 years in a season

    18/19–35 Games
    22/23–32 this season and he is out injured Again
    if your very lucky he will play an average 35 game’s Top’s ..😳👎

    Cam Talbot is now a Back up, He will be 36 yr old in July
    There are many many more Better, Healthier, Much Younger Goaltenders out there that are 10 year younger and that him…✔️

    Hope PD dose not Re-sign him at that money…
    Top $1.5M as a back up for 1 year and you maybe get 25-30 games out of him

    👌Then the Sen’s go out and get a Real Starter…

    • Sens will go for Jarry

      • Hey Johnny,

        Yes that would make the most sence as he Jarry is 27 yr old & is a UFA,
        If They Go For Jarry, they sign him for 7 years at..maybe $5.5M to $6.M range….❓

        Then they would not have to give up picks and prospects if they went that route,….👌

        un-like the following Goaltenders who are roumered to be coming on the trade block due to a Re-build with there current teams..

        All 3 of these team are on the rise and need a Good #1 Starter
        Buffalo, Montreal & The Sen’s
        They are All in the Market for a starting Goaltender’s for next season.

        it could be a very intresting Draft june 28th….🤔
        and UFA periof July 1st…

        27 yr old thatcher Demko,
        29 uyr old John Gibson,
        29 yr old Connor Hellebuyck
        24 yr old Carter Hart could be avalable also, but he has been Very Inconsistant again…❓😳

        The other Wild Card Goaltender is a
        Bostons young 24 yr old Jeremy Swayman
        who is a RFA,…… i can see him getting an offer sheet…..⁉️👍
        He has posted Great numbers this year…
        if the Salary is in this range, $4,110, – $6,166, the cost is
        1 First-Round Pick
        1 Third-Round Pick
        if its more the cost is
        $6,166, – $8,221,
        1 First-Round Pick
        1 Second-Round Pick
        1 Third-Round Pick

        They Boston currently have the #1 goaltender in the NHL 29 yr old Linus Ullmark, locked up for 2.2 more season at $5.M who has posted Great Numbers..👌

        For the Sen’s as they have traded away there 1st pick potently for 2023 or could be 2024….?

        The Conditions:
        If OTT makes it to the 2023 Eastern Conference Final, the pick becomes a 2024 1st round top 10 protected. If the pick is top 10, the pick becomes OTT 2025 1st round (unprotected) so potentially no 1st pick in 2023….

        I’m not 100% sure how that work if you sign an RFA but do have a 1st pick this season potentially
        but you could trade for a 1st pick in the late
        1st round of the draft… 25 to 32 range…..❓

        What Do you Guys think about this….. ❓