Evaluating The Latest Notable Trades Before the 2020 NHL Trade Deadline
The New Jersey Devils traded defenseman Andy Greene to the New York Islanders for prospect defenseman David Quenneville and a second-round pick in the 2021 NHL Draft. The Devils also shipped winger Blake Coleman to the Tampa Bay Lightning for left wing prospect Nolan Foote and a conditional first-round pick (originally belonging to Vancouver) in the 2020 NHL Draft.
SPECTOR’S NOTE: Just over a week before the Feb. 24 trade deadline, Devils interim general manager Tom Fitzgerald is wasting little time getting started on rebuilding his roster. Greene and Coleman were recent fixtures in the NHL rumor mill.
Greene, the now-former Devils captain, is slated to become an unrestricted free agent this summer. Islanders general manager Lou Lamoriello knows him well, as Greene played for Lamoriello during his tenure as the Devils GM. He’ll bring invaluable defensive experience to the Isles’ blueline as they jockey for playoff positioning down the stretch. The 37-year-old rearguard also indicated he intends to continue playing next season. Perhaps he’ll earn a bonus-laden one-year deal with the Isles if he plays well.
Quenneville, 21, was a seventh-round pick by the Isles in 2016. He spent last season with their AHL affiliate in Bridgeport and this season with Worcester in the ECHL. The real prize for the Devils is the second-round pick, replacing the one they traded to Nashville last summer in the P.K. Subban deal.
Coleman, 28, is a versatile two-way forward with 21 goals this season, putting him on the verge of eclipsing last season’s career-high of 22. He’s no playoff rental, as he has a year remaining on his contract at an affordable annual salary of $1.8 million. This move is a bit of a surprise, as it was assumed the Bolts were more in the market for a defenseman with Ryan McDonagh and Jan Rutta on injured reserve. Nevertheless, Coleman will be a solid addition to their already deep forward lines.
The return for Coleman is better for the Devils than the one they got for Greene. Selected in the first round (27th overall) by the Lightning in last year’s draft, the 19-year-old Foote is the son of former NHL defenseman Adam Foote. He’s a promising scoring winger currently with the Kelowna Rockets. He tallied five points in seven games for Canada’s gold-medal team at the 2020 World Junior Championships.
The Devis also picked up the Canucks’ conditional first-round pick that the Bolts acquired last year in the J.T. Miller trade. They now have potentially three picks in the first round of the 2020 draft.
The latest on Alec Martinez. Tyler Toffoli and Jake Muzzin plus updates on the Wild, Islanders, Devils, and Senators in today’s NHL rumor mill
WILD GM FACES TOUGH DECISIONS AS DEADLINE NEARS
THE ATHLETIC: Michael Russo believes Minnesota Wild general manager Bill Guerin must decide if he’ll be a seller by the Feb. 24 trade deadline. Teams are showing interest in defensemen Matt Dumba and Jonas Brodin and winger Marcus Foligno, though Russo wouldn’t be surprised if Foligno stays put. He believes Toronto, Carolina, Tampa Bay, Vegas, Winnipeg, Columbus, and Montreal are among the teams with interest in Dumba or Brodin.
The Maple Leafs seem the most interested in Dumba, but Russo feels they’ll have to part with a center like Alexander Kerfoot, and Russo doubts he’d be enough. The asking price from the Lightning could be Anthony Cirelli.
Russo doesn’t see the Hurricanes parting with Martin Necas for either rearguard. He also thinks the Canadiens could part with Max Domi for Brodin as they have a surplus at Domi’s position and need a left-shot defenseman.
SPECTOR’S NOTE: Since trading Jason Zucker to Pittsburgh earlier this week, Guerin has warned his players that other moves could be coming if they fail to play up to his expectations. Nevertheless, he’s not going to move Dumba, Brodin, Foligno or anyone else simply for the sake of making a trade.
Unless someone offers up a first-line center or a second-line center and something else for Dumba, he’s not going anywhere. The asking price for Brodin could be a second-line center. If Guerin doesn’t get any suitable offers, he’ll wait until the off-season for something he likes.
COULD INJURIES FORCE ISLANDERS INTO THE TRADE MARKET?
THE ATHLETIC: Arthur Staple recently suggested the pressure could be on New York Islanders GM Lou Lamoriello to make a move as injuries pile up. Staple suggested Ottawa Senators center Jean-Gabriel Pageau as one option, but doubts Lamoriello would part with a first-round pick to get him.
New Jersey Devils center Travis Zajac could be another target. Lamoriello drafted and signed him to his current contract when he was Devils GM, but Zajac already rejected a trade offer and could remain reluctant to move. More affordable options could include Anaheim’s Derek Grant, Los Angeles’ Trevor Lewis, or Detroit’s Luke Glendening.
SPECTOR’S NOTE: Lamoriello is the NHL’s most secretive GM, so we have no idea what he’s planning. Still, I wouldn’t be surprised if he makes a move before the deadline. With over $23 million in projected deadline cap room, he has more than enough to swing a significant deal. We’ll find out soon enough what he has in store.
UPDATE ON THE DEVILS
TSN: Bob McKenzie cites colleague Pierre LeBrun’s recent report claiming the Vancouver Canucks might have interest in New Jersey Devils winger Wayne Simmonds. However, that could depend upon the performance of physical winger Micheal Ferland when he returns to the lineup. Ferland is currently skating with the Canucks’ AHL affiliate as he works his way back from an upper-body injury.
Darren Dreger expects Devils GM Tom Fitzgerald will be busy leading up to the trade deadline. There could be “a ton of activity” involving pending UFAs such as Simmonds, Andy Greene and perhaps Sami Vatanen. There’s also interest in players signed beyond this season, such as Kyle Palmieri and Blake Coleman.
SPECTOR’S NOTE: NJ.com’s Chris Ryan acknowledged teams could call about Palmieri and Coleman, but he feels the Devils would need a big incentive to move them. In other words, you won’t be getting either guy at rental prices.
LEAFS COULD RE-SIGN MUZZIN BEFORE TRADE DEADLINE
TSN: Darren Dreger speculates the Toronto Maple Leafs could re-sign Jake Muzzin before the upcoming trade deadline. The 28-year-old defenseman is due to become an unrestricted free agent this summer.
SPECTOR’S NOTE: This isn’t a trade rumor and the Leafs aren’t a seller as the deadline nears. Nevertheless, whatever Muzzin’s gets on his next deal will affect the Leafs’ salary-cap payroll for 2020-21. They already have over $71.3 million invested in 15 players, with notables such as Tyson Barrie, Travis Dermott, and Jason Spezza to re-sign or replace. Muzzin’s new contract won’t leave much room to fill out the rest of the roster.
LATEST ON MARTINEZ
TSN: Bob McKenzie reports the Los Angeles Kings’ asking price for defenseman Alec Martinez appeared to be a second-round pick and a prospect. He said the Winnipeg Jets, Calgary Flames, Florida Panthers, and Carolina Hurricanes have varying degrees of interest in Martinez, who has a year remaining on his contract.
LIMITED INTEREST IN SENATORS UFAS.
TSN: Darren Dreger reports there hasn’t been as much interest as we might think in the Ottawa Senators’ pending UFAs. Contract talks between Senators GM Pierre Dorion and a couple of those UFAs, like Mark Borowiecki, could pick up next week.
SPECTOR’S NOTE: Those UFAs include Borowiecki, Jean-Gabriel Pageau, Craig Anderson, Vladislav Namestnikov, Ron Hainsey, Tyler Ennis, and Dylan DeMelo. Perhaps the limited interest is due to the Senators’ intention to re-sign some of them. It could also be that those players are low down on the priority list for most buyers.
— Sam Carchidi (@BroadStBull) February 13, 2020
The latest on Jason Zucker and Blake Coleman, plus updates on the Senators and Penguins in today’s NHL rumor mill.
ARE ZUCKER’S DAYS WITH THE WILD NUMBERED?
THE ATHLETIC: Michael Russo reports Jason Zucker won’t discuss the trade rumors swirling about him. The winger said he hasn’t spoken about his status with Minnesota Wild general manager Bill Guerin. “Heard nothing. Whatever happens, happens. I’m done dealing with it. I’m done worrying about it,” he said.
Zucker’s been the subject of trade chatter for the past two years. A deal that would’ve sent him to the Pittsburgh Penguins last May fell through. It’s assumed he could be the odd-man-out for the Wild, either at the trade deadline or the 2020 NHL Draft in June.
He has a 10-team no-trade clause, which Russo said is believed to include almost every Canadian team and a handful of American clubs. Sources claim the Penguins aren’t on that list. Zucker is believed to be a player on their radar as the trade deadline approaches.
SPECTOR’S NOTE: Zucker is signed through 2022-23 with an annual average value of $5.5 million. Guerin doesn’t have to move him at the trade deadline. If he doesn’t get an offer to his liking, he can wait until the off-season.
If Guerin is shopping the veteran winger, he’ll want a return that provides long-term help for his club. Speaking of the Penguins…
POSSIBLE PENGUINS TRADE TARGETS
PITTSBURGH HOCKEY NOW: Dan Kingerski suggested Nashville’s Craig Smith, Toronto’s Andreas Johnsson, and Rangers winger Jesper Fast as backup options if the Penguins fail to land one of the bigger names in the trade market.
SPECTOR’S NOTE: Given Penguins GM Jim Rutherford’s trade history, it’s anticipated he’ll swing a deal before the Feb. 24 deadline. One of the aforementioned players could be wearing a Penguins jersey by then. If Rutherford wants Johnsson, the Leafs’ asking price could be a defenseman. And no, they won’t want Jack Johnson.
UPDATES ON THE SENATORS
OTTAWA SUN: Bruce Garrioch reported Senators GM Pierre Dorion is working the phones but hasn’t yet found any potential trade partners. One reason is several clubs remain undecided about which route they’ll take by the trade deadline. The Senators have plenty to offer if they go to market, including pending unrestricted free agents such as Jean-Gabriel Pageau, Dylan DeMelo, Mark Borowiecki, and Ron Hainsey. Craig Anderson and Tyler Ennis could also be available, but Garrioch anticipates their market will be limited.
Given Anderson’s inconsistency and $4.75-million salary-cap hit, Garrioch doubts the veteran goalie will be marketable. The Florida Panthers need a backup, but they lack the cap space for Anderson’s cap hit, especially given his .899 save percentage this season. While Pageau and DeMelo could be moved if still unsigned by the trade deadline, Borowiecki and Hainsey could end up staying put for the rest of the season.
SPECTOR’S NOTE: Garrioch also noted that Dorion won’t make a move just for the sake of doing so. The Senators GM indicated they’ve already got a lot of draft picks and prospects in the pipeline. He could instead want a young player who can step into the Senators lineup right away, like Anthony Duclair when he was acquired last season from Columbus.
SHOULD THE OILERS PURSUE COLEMAN?
EDMONTON JOURNAL: Kurt Leavins doubts the Oilers will be going big-game hunting at the trade deadline. However, he suggested New Jersey Devils forward Blake Coleman as a trade option.
The 28-year-old has a year remaining on his contract, and the Devils could go into a full rebuild under new GM Tom Fitzgerald. Coleman is a versatile two-way player who’s scored 20 goals this season. Leavins wondered if an offer of Jesse Puljujarvi and either a third-round pick or a prospect might land Coleman.
SPECTOR’S NOTE: Coleman’s name recently surfaced in the rumor mill, but we don’t know if Fitzgerald (the Devils’ interim GM) intends to move out players on contracts that expire at the end of next season. We also don’t know if Oilers GM Ken Holland has Coleman on his radar. If he does, I doubt Puljujarvi and a third-rounder or a mid-range prospect will be enticing to Fitzgerald, who could get better offers from other clubs.
Are the Canadiens shopping Tomas Tatar and Jeff Petry? Should the Islanders attempt to acquire Kyle Palmieri from the Devils? What’s the latest on the Leafs and Kings? Find out in this Sunday’s NHL rumor roundup.
CANADIENS NOT SHOPPING TATAR AND PETRY
TVA SPORTS: Renaud Lavoie dismissed recent trade speculation regarding Tomas Tatar and Jeff Petry. He claimed the Montreal Canadiens won’t move either player unless they get golden offers, which he doesn’t believe they will. Lavoie also doesn’t expect Habs general manager Marc Bergevin will be busy at the trade deadline, as he’s looking toward winning next season.
SPECTOR’S NOTE: Tatar and Petry are also signed beyond this season, so Bergevin isn’t under pressure to trade them now. If the Habs keep clawing their way back into the playoff chase, the less likely Bergevin will be a seller by the Feb. 24 trade deadline.
SHOULD THE ISLANDERS PURSUE PALMIERI?
NEW YORK POST: Larry Brooks wonders what it would cost the New York Islanders to acquire winger Kyle Palmieri from the New Jersey Devils. “Oliver Wahlstrom? Well, maybe the Devils would like to toss Blake Coleman into the mix, then. The Islanders could add Josh Ho-Sang.” He also wondered if Devils interim GM Tom Fitzgerald would move Palmieri or Coleman by the Feb. 24 trade deadline before contract extension talks starting July 1.
SPECTOR’S NOTE: Like the Canadiens with Tatar and Petry, the Devils aren’t facing pressure to move Palmieri or Coleman before the trade deadline. Unless those two want out, management can wait and see how things unfold in contract discussions this summer. It would also be wise to determine if Fitzgerald stays on as GM or someone else takes over before deciding the fates of Palmieri and Coleman.
LEAFS TO WAIT FOR HEALTH UPDATES ON RIELLY AND CECI
SPORTSNET: Elliotte Friedman reports there’s a lot of talk suggesting the Toronto Maple Leafs could go out and get another defenseman because injured blueliners Morgan Rielly and Cody Ceci could be sidelined for a long time. However, the Leafs intend to wait for the health reports on the two rearguards. They’ll know more within the next couple of weeks.
SPECTOR’S NOTE: If Rielly and Ceci are sidelined until the playoffs, the Leafs can place both on long-term injured reserve and use the savings to bolster their blueline. Because there’s no salary cap in the playoffs, the Leafs wouldn’t have to shed salary to make room for those injured d-men when they are ready to return.
LATEST KINGS SPECULATION
SPORTSNET: Chris Johnston reports the Winnipeg Jets and Vegas Golden Knights are among the teams interested in Los Angeles Kings defenseman Alec Martinez. He also said the Pittsburgh Penguins and Calgary Flames have been linked to Kings winger Tyler Toffoli.
UPDATES ON KREIDER AND PAGEAU
SPORTSNET: Chris Johnston reports contract talks are set to begin this week between the New York Rangers and Chris Kreider. It doesn’t sound as though there have been any contract discussions of late between the Ottawa Senators and Jean-Gabriel Pageau.
Coyotes owner looking to sell a portion of the franchise, an update on Tom Wilson plus the latest contract signings and more in your NHL morning coffee headlines.
FORBES.COM: Mike Ozanian reports multiple sources claim Arizona Coyotes owner Andrew Barroway is looking to sell 49 percent of the franchise for an estimated $500 million. That figure includes “working capital to cover current losses as well as capital calls (money investors put into the team in subsequent years to cover operating losses).” Ozanian cites one source suggested the deal was “being presented would give the new investor a path towards control, if not immediate control” of the money-losing franchise.
SPECTOR’S NOTE: In Forbes’ annual evaluation of NHL franchises, the Coyotes were estimated to be worth $300 million last year. Ozanian said we should be skeptical if this deal is announced as $500 million as that’s not “a true sale price in the sense of an enterprise value.”
I’m doubtful Barroway will get $500 million for 49 percent of a franchise that’s been bleeding money for years. Then again, the Coyotes have proven to have more lives than a cat. Maybe he can find a new co-owner who can one day become majority owner.
THE WASHINGTON POST: Contract negotiations between the Capitals and restricted free agent winger Tom Wilson are ongoing but his agent claims they’re not close yet to a deal. Wilson passed on salary arbitration so it’s unclear how long talks could drag on.
The Capitals have roughly $8.2 million in cap space. Some have estimated Wilson’s new deal could come in between $3.5 – $4.5 million per season.
SPECTOR’S NOTE: As per Cap Friendly, Vesey’s deal is worth $4.55 million with an annual salary-cap hit of $2.275 million.
NEWSDAY: The New York Islanders and defenseman Ryan Pulock have agreed to a two-year contract.
SPECTOR’S NOTE: Cap Friendly reports the new deal is worth $4 million, with an annual average value of $2 million.
NORTHJERSEY.COM: The New Jersey Devils re-signed forward Blake Coleman to a three-year contract worth an annual average value of $1.8 million and forward Stefan Noesen to a one-year, $1.725-million deal.
LAS VEGAS REVIEW-JOURNAL: The Vegas Golden Knights and Tomas Nosek avoided arbitration as he agreed to a one-year, $963K contract.
THE NEWS & OBSERVER: The Carolina Hurricanes have hired Dean Chynoweth as an assistant coach.
TVA SPORTS: After a decade in the NHL, free-agent forward Torrey Mitchell is joining Lausanne of the Swiss National League A.
More awful news this morning. Former #Sens Director of European Scouting 2008-2017 Vaclav Burda passed away at age 45. Burda was with organization for 13 years. Claesson, Jaros, Lehner, Silfverberg, Zibanejad among those drafted during his tenure. https://t.co/zRcGwrF43v
— Murray Pam (@Pammerhockey) July 17, 2018