NHL Rumor Mill – September 23, 2022
KANE AND TOEWS
Kane, 33, told reporters he was disappointed that the club traded winger Alex DeBrincat in July. However, he dismissed the rumors that swirled about him during the offseason, saying a trade wasn’t something he’d thought about this summer.
The 34-year-old Toews, meanwhile, admitted he’d had some discussion with his family and his agent about a trade. However, those talks were not serious.
It’s apparent Kane and Toews will start the season with the Blackhawks. However, the focus could shift toward the March 3 trade deadline as the next opportunity when they could be moved. Pope reminds us that both players carry full no-movement clauses for the coming season, giving them complete control over this situation.
SPECTOR’S NOTE: Kane and Toews are both eligible to become unrestricted free agents next summer, hence the offseason media trade chatter. General manager Kyle Davidson has said he will leave it up to them to decide if they’ll request a trade.
I don’t doubt that some teams have contacted the Blackhawks about either guy but it sounds like Davidson won’t be approaching Kane and/or Toews with trade offers. He could instead tell the interested clubs that he’ll get back to them if one or both players ask to be moved.
THE ATHLETIC: Whether Alex DeBrincat will sign a contract extension was among Ian Mendes’ burning questions for the Ottawa Senators going into training camp. The 24-year-old winger is due to become a restricted free agent next summer and will be a year away by that point from UFA eligibility.
DeBrincat carries an average annual value of $6.4 million but will earn $9 million in actual salary for this season. That will have to be the Senators’ minimum qualifying offer if they want to keep him on a one-year deal.
Mendes believes DeBrincat’s situation could be among the interesting storylines for the Senators this season. His camp will want him to be the highest-paid player on the Senators if he fits in well and reaches the 40-goal plateau again.
SPECTOR’S NOTE: Another 40-goal performance could see DeBrincat’s representatives seek $10 million annually on an eight-year contract, especially if he helps the Senators reach the playoffs for the first time since 2017.
TSN: Pierre LeBrun reports contract talks between the Vancouver Canucks and captain Bo Horvat have been quiet of late but those discussions stretch back several months. Lots of time remains to get a deal done and it’s the club’s priority to get the 27-year-old center under contract.
LeBrun feels the Canucks feel a little less pressure to get Horvat signed after recently re-signing J.T. Miller. However, they have a delicate cap situation into which to fit his new contract. If he’s not signed by the March 3 trade deadline, there’s a possibility he could be traded.
SPECTOR’S NOTE: Horvat is slated to become a UFA next summer and carries a $5.5 million AAV for this season. He could seek over $7 million annually on his next deal.
Miller was the subject of considerable trade speculation before signing his new contract. While Horvat could get shopped at the trade deadline, I think negotiations would have to go downhill pretty fast to reach that point. We’ll see how the season plays out.
THE ATHLETIC: How the Boston Bruins will become cap compliant once sidelined stars like Brad Marchand and Charlie McAvoy return to the lineup was among Fluto Shinzawa’s burning questions as the club enters training camp.
General manager Don Sweeney could trade or waive players at the start of the season but that would leave the Bruins shorthanded. Shinzawa speculated he could wait until November or December to address that issue.