NHL Rumor Mill – June 15, 2023

by | Jun 15, 2023 | Rumors | 37 comments

How will the impending sale of the Senators affect their offseason plans? What’s the latest on the Canadiens? Could the Predators explore this summer’s trade market? Find out in today’s NHL Rumor Mill.


OTTAWA SUN: Bruce Garrioch reports speculation began over what changes Michael Andlauer could make to the Senators following news of his agreement in principle to purchase the club. Whatever he has in store must wait until the sale is officially completed, which could take several weeks or months.

Ottawa Senators winger Alex DeBrincat (NHL Images).

That won’t affect the offseason plans of general manager Pierre Dorion and his staff as they prepare for the upcoming draft in Nashville (June 28-29) and the start of the free-agent period on July 1. Dorion must also consider possible trade options for restricted free-agent winger Alex DeBrincat.

DeBrincat lacks a no-trade clause but he and his agent provided the Senators with a list of preferred trade destinations. Garrioch reports the list includes his hometown Detroit Red Wings, Florida Panthers, Vegas Golden Knights and Dallas Stars. He pointed out that the Panthers and Golden Knights lack the salary-cap space to make a deal for DeBrincat so there would have to be some major juggling to do that.

Garrioch also indicated that DeBrincat will receive his $9 million qualifying offer from the Senators on June 25. Dorion will have until 5 pm Monday to determine if he’ll elect arbitration in the hope of getting a 15 percent discount on that qualifying offer.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: It’s anticipated that the Senators will attempt to move DeBrincat prior to the first round (June 28) of this year’s draft. As Garrioch noted, this is the time to strike when the iron’s hot while general managers have the cap space and the willingness to spend in the trade market.

The Red Wings have plenty of cap space and need additional scoring. However, they could be seeking more of a power forward than a finesse player.

I doubt the Golden Knights and Panthers will get into the bidding. Nevertheless, their respective general managers have well-earned reputations for making significant moves.

Like the Golden Knights and Panthers, the Stars lack sufficient cap room. GM Jim Nill could be in the market for more affordable depth. Encouraged by the play of promising young players like Wyatt Johnston, he could also promote a youngster such as Mavrik Bourque.


THE ATHLETIC: Arpon Basu confirmed a Radio-Canada report claiming the Montreal Canadiens are attempting to move up in the 2023 first-round draft order. Currently holding the fifth-overall pick, they’ve attempted to swap picks with the fourth-overall San Jose Sharks and have contacted the Anaheim Ducks about the second-overall selection.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Basu observed that the cost of jumping to second overall would be astronomical but worth it to land a highly-touted prospect like Adam Fantilli. If this wasn’t Connor Bedard’s draft year, Fantilli would be the favorite to go first overall.

I don’t see the Habs prying that pick away from the Ducks but it doesn’t hurt to ask. The same goes for trying to get the Sharks’ pick.

Basu also reports the Canadiens will not buy out winger Mike Hoffman. The first contract buyout window for NHL teams opens today and runs until 5 pm ET on June 30. They are willing to retain half of Hoffman’s $4.5 million cap hit in a trade but that seems unlikely to happen given he didn’t produce enough to justify the cost.

The Canadiens won’t be tendering a qualifying offer to restricted free agent Denis Gurianov. However, they haven’t ruled out signing him as an unrestricted free agent to a one-year deal at a reduced rate.

They’re also interested in signing pending UFA center Sean Monahan to an affordable one-year deal to give him a chance to prove he can stay healthy and improve his value in next summer’s free-agent market.


NASHVILLE HOCKEY NOW: Michael Gallagher reports Predators general manager Barry Trotz intends to go shopping for offensive-minded players in this summer’s trade market. He’s willing to spend as much of the club’s $15.5 million in projected cap space for 2023-24 as possible to achieve that aim.

Trotz doesn’t anticipate he’ll be a big player in this summer’s UFA market, describing it as “a little bit lean.” He also wants to add players “that fit our culture.” He’s pitched trade offers to clubs that are looking to shed salary.

Gallagher observed there are three teams (Montreal, Tampa Bay and Vancouver) with less than $1 million in cap space. He also noted there will be several others looking to move a player with a sizable cap hit.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: The Canadiens will garner $10.5 million in cap relief by placing all-but-retired sidelined goalie Carey Price on long-term injury reserve. Still, they’ll be open to moving out a veteran forward like Mike Hoffman to free up cap room.

Meanwhile, the Lightning will garner over $6.8 million in LTIR cap relief due to permanently sidelined defenseman Brent Seabrook.

It’s been well-documented the Canucks are actively trying to shed salary. They’re believed to be shopping Conor Garland but Trotz might have his eye on scoring winger Brock Boeser.


  1. I’d hardly call Brock Boeser a ‘scoring” winger.

  2. the Canucks keep flip flopping on what to do with Broke Boeser.

    We shall see.

    I can see DeBrincat going to Nashville or Pitt for one of those mid-teen 1st round picks and maybe something else

    • Or New Jersey.

      • The leafs should let KERFOOTS 3.5 million go to BARBASHEV .

    • Dark G
      The Canucks still dont know where they are going with a Re-tool or a Re-build……….
      fan base hase been asking for months in vancouver
      The d is pretty bad,
      lots of cash strapped teams out there this year, they may have to move a pick to get some of these guys gone

      OEL is not movable at $7.26M for 4 more years
      Tyler Myres will get moved at the trade dead line $6.M
      Quinn hughes is there best d/man thats a project rebuild right there…on D

      As for forwards not a pretty pickture there

      I’m Not sure if they Move $8M TJ Millar…❓
      Trading Brock Boeser, they may have to eat $2.5 of his $6.6 Salary for 2 more years❓
      Connor garland could be tought to move also$5M.
      Anthony Beauvillier is a UFA not sure he want to stay for a Re-something

      The Re-soming will all start with there Goaltender Thatcher Demko if they trade him…?

      I could see the Preds going after Debrincat, they have lots of picks 2 in each of the first 3 rounds and some good prospects…. to offer up, they do need scoring…. i think he is traded in the first round of the NHL draft on june 28th…..🤔

  3. The leafs should offer 3.5 million to BARBASHEV and let KERFOOT walk with his former contract for the same amount.

    • It will take more than 3.5 to sign Barbt.

  4. George O, help me out here, I can’t remember his name the rfa and 20 goal scorer who was part of team Canada.

    What is the latest on him? has he unofficially been banned by the league?

    His name rarely comes up and it seem the league just want him forgotten about.

    This isn’t sarcasm, i don’t remember his name, i know i could google it and find it and maybe this is what the league wants; just forget about him.

    • Caper, Alex Formenton hasn’t actually been officially banned … but the fact he’s playing in Switzerland for peanuts suggests he may have been involved to some extent.

      And by the way, he never scored 20 goals – although he did get to 18.

    • Thanks George, correct 18 goals, teams don’t give up on 23yr old who scored 18g and 6’3″ 195lbs unfortunate for Ottawa they have an untradeable asset at the moment. How much better Ottawa would be with him in the line up.

      • Ah, he’s honestly not needed. Pinto is rounding out to be a better player and Norris should be fully healthy by next season. Debrincat will likely be sent somewhere with a decent player in return PLUS Belleville has quite a few guys all ready to go IE Ridley Greig.

      • Thesaint, he is a valuable asset; if not needed in Ottawa he would certainly draw a lot of interest from other teams. Therefore Ottawa could trade him for a need, draft picks or prospects. Unfortunately their hands are tied.

      • Oh that’s what I meant caper haha. I do not think he would be missed on the Sens but another team could take a risk on him all depending what is happening with the charges and investigation.

        I feel like the Sens have built something that he would not really fit into anymore, especially cap wise. Great trade chip is he isn’t marred by controversy.

      • I get the sense that the investigation could be wrapped up with little to nothing coming of it other than Formenton and only Formenton missing a season. If the investigation is concluded with no charges or further inquiries I could see Formenton and his agent pursuing legal action against the Sens/NHL for essentially derailing his career. He’s so far, only guilty of not giving a statement. The Sens were only able to bury him Europe because he lacked a contract. A certain tradeable goaltender who gave a statement but was rumoured to be one of the main three involved was able to continue playing because he had a contract. I’m not absolving these individuals or suggesting what they did wasn’t reprehensible. I’m simply saying the hockey community is very tight knit. The people in Ottawa who know stuff. Know stuff. Rick Westhead is a putz. I’m mostly annoyed at how long this is taking. Poop or get off the pot. Charge the men involved. Or don’t.

  5. I don’t see the Habs moving up. Cost will be too high. I’d love to have Fantilli, but undoubtedly so would Anaheim. They will certainly ask for one of the Habs untouchables.
    There may be a small chance of moving up to #4 if the Sharks plan on drafting Michkov and if their ask is reasonable. It’s believed that the Habs want one of the four centers and do not plan on picking Michkov even if he’s available.
    If a trade for PLD doesn’t happen, it would be wise to sign Monahan to a one year incentive laden deal. If he manages to stay healthy it’ll give them a solid veteran center behind Suzuki and allow the Habs to play Dach with Suzuki and Caufield, which worked fairly well this past season. I frankly don’t see Monahan getting more than a one year incentive deal from anyone.

    • I think if the Habs sign PLD they will draft Michkov. They will be set at center with Suzuki, PLD and Beck coming up in a couple of years.

      • Premier, if the 4 centers are gone, the Habs will go for either Reinbacher or Leonard rather than Michkov. I wouldn’t call Hughes and Gorton risk averse but they see him as too big a risk that high.

    • Howard,I think Monahan will check the market before he signs a 1yr incentive package. Teams are looking for C, I’m sure some time will give him a multi year contract.

      • Caper, with all due respect, as much as teams are looking at centers, I don’t see anyone giving Monahan a multi-year deal at this point. Certainly not at big money. Monahan might prefer a 1 year deal to try to prove that he’s back and healthy. If he do so, then next year he’ll get a multi year deal for a lot more money than he’d get this year.

    • Howard, that the Habs are reportedly in the hunt for a center in the draft tells us that they are not keen on PLD, and, apparently, Smith.

      • LJ, I don’t think it tells us anything. Like a good GM, Hughes is looking at all options. And Smith is a center. That’s the guy they’d want if they move up to #4,

      • I know Smith is a center, Howard. If the Habs are really trying to move up then it surely means they are interested in Fantilli (fat chance) or Carlsson. Every expert’s 4 + are different and GMs have their own list but no one that I know of has Smith rated at 5 or higher.

        As for the Habs doing their due diligence, they are hardly going to try to move up to get a center and then add Dubois.

        You’ve been keen on Dubois for a while. That’s fine, and rumours are just that but the Habs have a # of young centres (Davidson, Roy, Beck, Farrell). With a contract offer rumoured for Monahan, where exactly is the room for any of the young center prospects to get ice time?

        So I say again, if the Habs are targeting a center in this year’s draft it makes no sense for them to add Dubois.

      • LJ, the Habs are reportedly inquiring of Anaheim as to the #2 pick. I don’t dispute that Fantilli is the better prospect than Smith. But when (not if) that doesn’t happen, they are also talking to SJ about #4. That would be to draft Smith. They’re high on him too.
        I guess we’re looking at different mock drafts and rankings because I’ve seen numerous that have Smith from 3 – 5.
        I stand by my earlier comment that Hughes is doing his due diligence in examining all options. He’d obviously like to draft a stud center, but that doesn’t mean he won’t also consider Dubois if that doesn’t materialize.
        Also, while Beck is a center, I believe that Roy and Farrell are wingers. Not sure about Davidson.

    • How about Juraj Slafkovský + no. 5 overall pick to Anaheim for 2nd overall?

  6. maybe a sign and trade of PLD to MTL for their #1 pick?

    • Mtl would be insane to send their 1st round pick for the privilege of having the dubious Dubois on their team.

  7. Habs should pluck Lafrenière away from the Rangers. they have the assets. besides the Quebec thing he has a skillset that could fit in with the other young core.
    He still gets 3rd line minutes and almost hits 20 even strength goals.

    • I don’t see the Rangers trading Lafreniere. They haven’t thrown in the towel on him yet and will likely give him more ice time. Kappo would be more of a possibility.

  8. preds just need to be fixed

    • Saros and Johansen to Nj for sign and trade with Meir and Blackwood

      Nj gets goalie top 10 of league which has been NJ Achilles heel lately
      Pick up a big body center who can play wing under contract for 2 yrs

      Nash gets prime Meir and can sign any of the UFA goalies

      • That’s some of your best work right there, Ihatecrosby.

  9. Dorian will take the Dat to arb, if only to delay the trade long enough to trade him for a good return and get an arb ruling where the Cat is paid around $8M. The Cat will be gone as soon as it is possible!

    • Yep exactly. The return on a signed player is higher than not I would think.

  10. DeBrincat is a lost cause. He’s made it clear he hates it in Ottawa and Canada. To be honest, I don’t want him signed in Ottawa. He faded out the last 1/3 of the season, horrible defensive side to his game and is nothing short of a candy-ass American who wants to live in the sunny south. I hope he gets traded, then gets pummelled into the boards with a clean but thundering hit. He is talented, but he is an entitled pansy. Go wilt in Arizona.

    • Wooooo. Spicy!

  11. Not a rumour, just spit balling here…

    You be the GM of Montreal or Anaheim…

    Would you do:

    From Montreal 5th overall pick + Juraj Slafkovský
    To Anaheim for 2nd overall pick

    • “Sure, why not! Ducks have enough C’s already” said Dylan Strome.