NHL Rumor Mill – November 5, 2022

NHL Rumor Mill – November 5, 2022

Could the Flames re-sign Milan Lucic? Will the Oilers trade a forward to make room for Dylan Holloway? What coaches are available if some teams consider making changes behind the bench? Find out in today’s NHL Rumor Mill.

WILL THE FLAMES SIGN LUCIC TO A NEW CONTRACT?

CALGARY HOCKEY NOW: Steve Macfarlane recently mused over whether the Flames will re-sign Milan Lucic. The 34-year-old power forward is slated to become an unrestricted free agent next July. He’s been one of their steadiest players this season and is skating on the second line with Elias Lindholm and Tyler Toffoli.

Calgary Flames winger Milan Lucic (NHL Images).

In addition to Lucic’s improved play, he’s also become a leader in the dressing room. Macfarlane believes there’s little doubt he wants to stay in Calgary and would cost a lot less than the $6 million average annual value he’s earning split between the Flames and the Edmonton Oilers.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: The Flames have limited cap space ($1.7 million) for 2023-24. Fortunately, all their core players are under contract and Lucic is their most noteworthy pending free agent.

They might have to create some additional cap room even if Lucic’s next contract is a short-term one at a far more affordable rate than his current one. Still, I think the two sides can work something out if he wants to stay and management feels he can still contribute.

WILL THE OILERS MOVE A FORWARD TO MAKE ROOM FOR HOLLOWAY?

THE ATHLETIC: Allan Mitchell examined the Edmonton Oilers’ options to get promising winger Dylan Holloway more playing time this season. The easiest choice would be to send him to their AHL affiliate in Bakersfield and then recall the 21-year-old if he does well there after a few games.

Another would be finding a way to create room on the roster for Holloway to skate among the top-six forwards. That could come down to making a decision on moving Kailer Yamamoto, Jesse Puljujarvi or Warren Foegele.

Mitchell believes Yamamoto will stay put, in part because he’s signed through next season. Puljujarvi has frequently surfaced in media trade rumors but Mitchell believes the big winger helps the team even when he’s not scoring.

That leaves Foegele as potentially vulnerable. He‘s a left-shot winger filling the position Holloway is best suited to play.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Foegele hasn’t popped up as much as Puljujarvi in the rumor mill but he has been mentioned before as a trade candidate. However, general manager Ken Holland has found ways to balance his roster thus far without resorting to a trade. I think Holloway’s destined spend some time in Bakersfield.

AVAILABLE NHL COACHES

DAILY FACEOFF: Matt Larkin looked at the notable former NHL coaches currently available for any team that might be considering a shakeup behind the bench this season.

Topping the list, of course, is Barry Trotz followed by Rick Tocchet. Other familiar names include Alain Vigneault, Dave Tippett, Andrew Brunette, Travis Green and Jeff Blashill.

Larkin also listed “up-and-comers” such as Ryan Warsofsky, Jay Leach and Ian Laperriere. He also noted former NHL coaches Mike Babcock and Joel Quenneville are available but suggests both carry too much baggage to return to the league’s coaching ranks.










NHL Rumor Mill – October 1, 2022

NHL Rumor Mill – October 1, 2022

Are the Oilers in the Jakob Chychrun sweepstakes? Is Blues defenseman Torey Krug a trade candidate? Find out in today’s NHL Rumor Mill.

SPORTSNET’s Mark Spector took to Twitter on Friday to report the Edmonton Oilers are “NOT in on any Jakob Chychrun talks at this time.”

Arizona Coyotes defenseman Jakob Chychrun (NHL Images).

Spector indicated that Philip Broberg and Dylan Holloway are non-starters as prospects heading to Arizona as part of any trade return. He also said that a package of Jesse Puljujarvi and a first-round pick was not enough for the Arizona Coyotes.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Chychrun carries a $4.6 million average annual value through 2024-25. The Oilers can’t afford the 24-year-old Coyotes defenseman unless they included a salaried player in the return to Arizona or make a separate cost-cutting deal.

The Oilers are sitting above the $82.5 million salary cap this season by over $7.5 million. They’ll get over $6.3 million in cap relief with Oscar Klefbom and Mike Smith on long-term injury reserve but could face icing a 21-man roster to be cap compliant for the start of the season unless they can clear another contract from their books.

STLTODAY.COM: Jim Thomas reports Blues defenseman Torey Krug was mentioned in trade rumors as this summer’s free-agent period approached. “It’s not certain if there was any substance to this,” writes Thomas. “Was his name just being floated, or was general manager Doug Armstrong actively trying to move him?”

Krug, however, brushed off the rumors. “When you have a full no-trade clause, you don’t worry about it too much,” he said. The 31-year-old blueliner is in the third year of a seven-year contract with an annual cap hit of $6.5 million.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: If Armstrong was looking at moving Krug it doesn’t sound like he approached him about it. The rearguard’s full no-trade gives him complete control over his situation.

It doesn’t necessarily mean Krug can’t be traded. There have been instances where players with such clauses agree to waive them to go to specific teams. We don’t know what he might do if he was asked to waive his clause but it’s evidently not a scenario that’s causing him any sleepless nights.










NHL Morning Coffee Headlines – September 13, 2021

NHL Morning Coffee Headlines – September 13, 2021

Penguins GM Ron Hextall talks about his club’s offseason and their plans for the upcoming season, plus the latest on Jason Demers, Bo Byram, Ryan Donato and more in today’s NHL morning coffee headlines.

POST-GAZETTE.COM: In an interview with Mike DeFabo, Pittsburgh Penguins general manager Ron Hextall said “there wasn’t a feeling around here” that big changes were needed during this offseason. “I think the part you can’t lose sight of is we did win the division last year,” he said.

Pittsburgh Penguins general manager Ron Hextall (NHL.com).

Hextall doubts team captain Sidney Crosby will be sidelined long-term by his recent wrist surgery. However, he conceded Evgeni Malkin (knee surgery) could start the season on long-term injury reserve. Hextall also said the departures of Jared McCann and Brandon Tanev were cost-cutting measures to remain under the salary cap. He also

Turning to the UFA status of Malkin, Kris Letang and Bryan Rust, Hextall remains hopeful of reaching an agreement with the trio that’s fair for both sides. He’s also looking for better performances from defenseman Marcus Pettersson and John Marino and winger Jason Zucker.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: The Penguins failed to advance past the first round in two of the last three postseasons and didn’t get past the qualifying round during last year’s expanded playoff format. Questionable goaltending and an aging roster core were contributing factors behind those playoff disappointments.

Hextall’s limited cap space prevented him from making any significant additions to his roster this summer. The outcome of this season could determine if Malkin, Letang and Rust still fit into the Penguins’ long-term plans.

PHNX: Craig Morgan reports former Arizona Coyotes defenseman Jason Demers is still waiting to find an NHL team to play with. “There’s hard days and there’s good days,” he said. “You’ve just got to focus on keeping yourself ready and making sure you don’t look too far ahead or you can make yourself go crazy, sitting in the house.” The 33-year-old Demers is training in Arizona.

COLORADO HOCKEY NOW: Avalanche defenseman Bo Byram is hoping for a healthier season after being limited to just 19 games in 2020-21 by concussion symptoms and testing positive for COVID-19.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Byram could see more playing time and responsibilities this season following the offseason departures of Ryan Graves and Patrik Nemeth.

CAP FRIENDLY: reports Ryan Donato signed a one-year, $750K contract with the Seattle Kraken.

EDMONTON JOURNAL: Oilers prospect Dylan Holloway might not be on the ice for the club’s rookie training camp. He underwent offseason surgery to repair a broken thumb suffered last season playing for the University of Wisconsin but it may not be fully healed.