NHL Rumor Mill – April 23, 2020

NHL Rumor Mill – April 23, 2020

Recent speculation on the Oilers, Flames, and Red Wings in today’s NHL rumor mill.

OILERS

SPORTSNET: In a recent mailbag segment, Mark Spector was asked if the Edmonton Oilers might bring back Taylor Hall if they can shed some salary. He felt there’s zero chance of the 28-year-old winger returning to Edmonton, pointing out the Oilers already carry several players with expensive contracts. “I think it’s a dream Oilers fans should wake up from. Hall’s not coming back,” wrote Spector.

(NOT MARK) SPECTOR’S NOTE: I agree with “Cousin Mark”. Hall returning to the Oilers is a pipe dream. Stop pining about what could’ve been and look forward.

Jesse Puljujarvi’s future remains an off-season question for the Edmonton Oilers (Photo via NHL Images).

Asked out the most likely scenario for Jesse Puljujarvi, Spector said the Oilers prefer he returns and plays for them. If he doesn’t, they could let him spend another season in Finland (where he’ll make less money), or trade him at the draft for perhaps two second-round picks, or a second and a prospect (the Oilers lack a second-rounder in this year’s draft). Spector thinks Puljujarvi should return to the Oilers on a one-year deal and prove he can still play.

(STILL NOT MARK) SPECTOR’S NOTE: It’ll be interesting to see how the Oilers handle this situation. Puljujarvi’s done well in Finland (53 points in 56 games), but that’s not much of an indicator whether he can be an effective NHL player.

Asked if Sam Gagner might sign with the Oilers as an unrestricted free agent, Spector believes he will. He’d be an affordable signing, his home is in Edmonton, and Oilers general manager Ken Holland could see Gagner as a future member of the front office.

(THE OTHER ) SPECTOR’S NOTE: Gagner is completing a three-year deal worth an annual average value of $3.15 million. He’s not getting that much ever again, but he could be a decent fourth-line pickup for the Oilers (or somebody else) on a one-year, $900K contract.

FLAMES

SPORTSNET: Eric Francis recently opened up the mailbag to address questions from Calgary Flames fans. Asked if the Flames might shake up their core, Francis doesn’t believe they will. Acknowledging the production of stars like Johnny Gaudreau is down this season, he feels the early end to this season ensures Gaudreau will return next season. He thinks players like Gaudreau and Monahan shouldn’t be shopped until they’ve had a shot at redemption.

(THE BETTER-LOOKING) SPECTOR’S NOTE: I didn’t put any stock into the trade rumors involving Gaudreau and Sean Monahan this season. Yes, their production was down this season, but they’re only a year removed from their respective career-high point totals. They’re still in the mid-twenties and very much in their playing prime. Unless they asked to be moved, they’re not going anywhere.

Francis thinks the Flames will kick tires on Taylor Hall if he tests the UFA market but believes they’ll use their cap space to plug holes in their defense corps than overspending on Hall. He also doesn’t see both T.J. Brodie and Travis Hamonic returning next season but Brodie could stay.

Francis also sees the Flames attempting to re-sign UFA goalie Cam Talbot or taking a stab at Vancouver’s Jacob Markstrom or Vegas’ Robin Lehner. He doesn’t think they’ll try to buy out Milan Lucic’s contract, pointing out he fills an effective physical role, as well as his popularity with his teammates and among Calgary fans.

Asked if interim coach Geoff Ward will remain as their bench boss after this season, Francis believes he will, citing GM Brad Treliving saying he’s seen enough to make his decision. Following a shaky start, the Flames turned things around under Ward, who has a year remaining on his contract.

RED WINGS

THE DETROIT NEWS: Ted Kulfan recently weighed in with his thoughts on what Red Wings GM Steve Yzerman will do with his 12 restricted free agents.

Tyler Bertuzzi will likely get a long-term deal. Anthony Mantha’s situation could be more complicated. He could sign a one-year deal to post up big numbers before his UFA eligibility in two years, or the Wings could ink him to a four- or five-year deal believing he’ll keep progressing.

Kulfan believes Robby Fabbri has shown enough this season to be part of the Wings’ short-term future. He expects Adam Erne to be re-signed but feels he must take a bigger step forward.

He wouldn’t be surprised if the Wings cut ties with Madison Bowey and Brendan Perlini.










NHL Morning Coffee Headlines – February 12, 2020

NHL Morning Coffee Headlines – February 12, 2020

Ducks-Blues game postponed following Jay Bouwmeester’s cardiac incident, injury updates, and more in today’s NHL morning coffee headlines.

GAME RECAPS

NHL.COM: Last night’s game between the Anaheim Ducks and St. Louis Blues was postponed after Blues defenseman Jay Bouwmeester suffered a cardiac incident and collapsed on the Blues’ bench in the first period. Thanks to the quick response of the medical staff of both clubs, Bouwmeester was stabilized and reportedly conscious, alert, and moving his extremities as he was transported to a local hospital for further tests and observations. An update on his condition will be released later today.

St. Louis Blues defenseman Jay Bouwmeester hospitalized following a cardiac incident (Photo via NHL Images).

SPECTOR’S NOTE: A frightening moment for all concerned. Here’s hoping Bouwmeester makes a full recovery and returns to action soon.

Yanni Gourde’s overtime goal gave the Tampa Bay Lightning a 2-1 win over the Pittsburgh Penguins. Lightning goalie Andrei Vasilevskiy extended his franchise-record points streak to 19 games. The Bolts (79 points) have won eight straight games and sit one point behind the league-leading Boston Bruins. It was a costly win for the Lightning, as Nikita Kucherov and Anthony Cirelli left the game with lower-body injuries.

Philipp Grubauer turned in a 34-save shutout as the Colorado Avalanche blanked the Ottawa Senators 3-0. The Avs (72 points) have won eight of their last nine contests and sit one behind the Western Conference-leading Blues. Earlier in the day, the Avalanche learned center Nazem Kadri will miss multiple weeks with a lower-body injury.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Kadri’s injury has sparked speculation the Avs could seek a short-term replacement before the trade market. I’ll have more shortly in the Rumors section.

Dallas Stars captain Jamie Benn’s hat trick powered his club to a 4-1 victory over the Carolina Hurricanes. The Stars (69 points) have won four of their last six games and sit third in the Central Division, while the Hurricanes (67 points) are two points out of an Eastern Conference wild-card berth.

Leon Draisaitl had a goal and three assists while Kailer Yamamoto scored twice in the Edmonton Oilers 5-3 victory over the Chicago Blackhawks. The Oilers (66 points) sit one back of the Vancouver Canucks for first in the Pacific Division, while the Blackhawks (58 points) are six points out of a Western Conference wild-card spot. Earlier in the day, the Oilers announced captain Connor McDavid will be sidelined two-to-three weeks with a quadriceps injury.

The New York Islanders blew a 3-0 lead but rallied on goals by Ryan Pulock and Leo Komarov to down the Philadelphia Flyers 5-3. Isles center Mathew Barzal collected three assists while teammate Casey Cizikas left the game in the first period with an apparent cut to his left leg. The Isles (72 points) sit third in the Metropolitan Division, while the Flyers (69 points) hold the final wild-card berth in the Eastern Conference.

An overtime goal by Kasperi Kapanen lifted the Toronto Maple Leafs to a 3-2 win over the Arizona Coyotes. The Coyotes had seemingly won the game earlier in the extra frame, but it was overturned due to goaltender interference. Zach Hyman scored both regulation goals for the Leafs (68 points), who hold third place in the Atlantic Division.

Mike Matheson, Mark Pysyk and Noel Acciari each had a goal and two assists to power the Florida Panthers over the New Jersey Devils 5-3. The Panthers sit two points behind the Leafs in the Atlantic Division.

Sam Reinhart’s early third-period goal held up as the game-winner as the Buffalo Sabres edged the Detroit Red Wings 3-2. The Sabres sit 10 points behind the third-place Leafs in the Atlantic Division. Wings forward Anthony Mantha picked up two assists. Teammate Brendan Perlini suffered a bruised right orbital bone and received several stitches to his face after being struck by a skate in the first period.

Minnesota Wild goaltender Alex Stalock made 26 saves to shut out the Vegas Golden Knights 4-0. Kevin Fiala scored and picked up two assists for the Wild (60 points), who sit four points behind the Golden Knights and Coyotes for one of the two wild-card spots in the Western Conference.

New York Rangers goalie Igor Shesterkin kicked out 42 shots in a 4-1 win over the Winnipeg Jets. He briefly left the game early in the first period under the league’s concussion protocol but showed no ill-effects upon his return. Chris Kreider scored twice for the Rangers (60 points), who sit nine points out of an Eastern Conference wild-card spot. The Jets (63) sit one point out of a wild-card spot in the West. Rangers defenseman Jacob Trouba received a mixed reaction from Jets fans in his first game back in Winnipeg since getting traded to New York last summer. Before the game, Randy Carlyle and Tomas Steen were inducted into the Jets Hall of Fame.

IN OTHER NEWS…

THE COLUMBUS DISPATCH: Blue Jackets defenseman Seth Jones will be sidelined for eight-to-ten weeks with an injured right ankle.

MONTREAL GAZETTE: The Canadiens remain mum on the status of captain Shea Weber. The Habs captain remains sidelined with a lower-body injury and there’s no timetable for his return.

THE WASHINGTON POST: Capitals center Evgeny Kuznetsov is listed as day-to-day with an upper-body injury.

SPORTSNET: Vancouver Canucks winger Antoine Roussel was fined $5,000.00 by the NHL department of player safety for slashing Nashville Predators defenseman Yannick Weber.

EDMONTON JOURNAL: The Oilers re-signed forward Joakim Nygard to a one-year, $875K contract.

 










NHLer Perlini Offers Example of How Hockey World Is a Small World After All

NHLer Perlini Offers Example of How Hockey World Is a Small World After All

 










NHL Morning Coffee Headlines – October 29, 2019

NHL Morning Coffee Headlines – October 29, 2019

Three stars of the week, Vladimir Tarasenko sidelined for five months, Evgeni Malkin hopes to return by week’s end, and more in today’s NHL morning coffee headlines.

GAME RECAPS

NHL.COM: A five-goal first period powered the Vancouver Canucks to a 7-2 thrashing of the Florida Panthers, ending the latter’s eight-game points streak. J.T. Miller scored twice while Elias Pettersson and Alexander Edler each collected three assists. Panthers goaltender Sam Montembault was pulled after giving up three goals on nine shots but returned for the second period after Sergei Bobrovsky allowed two goals on six shots.

Nick Schmaltz scored in the shootout as the Arizona Coyotes overcame a 2-0 deficit to nip the Buffalo Sabres 3-2. Conor Garland had a goal and an assist for the Coyotes, who’ve won six of their last seven games. Jeff Skinner had a goal and an assist for the Sabres.

HEADLINES

Boston Bruins winger Brad Marchand, Nashville Predators defenseman Roman Josi, and Philadelphia Flyers goaltender Brian Elliott are the NHL’s three stars for the week ending Oct. 27, 2019.

STLTODAY.COM: Blues winger Vladimir Tarasenko will undergo shoulder surgery and will be sidelined for five months.

Shoulder surgery will sideline St. Louis Blues winger Vladimir Tarasenko for five months (Photo via NHL Images).

SPECTOR’S NOTE: This is a serious blow to the Blues’ offense, robbing them of their best goal scorer. They’ll have to turn to a young forward like Robert Thomas, Sammy Blais or Robby Fabbri to fill the void.

SPORTSNET: Pittsburgh Penguins center Evgeni Malkin hopes to return to action on Saturday against the Edmonton Oilers. A lower-body injury has sidelined him for all but two games this month.

CHICAGO SUN-TIMES/DETROIT FREE PRESS: The Chicago Blackhawks traded forward Brendan Perlini to the Detroit Red Wings in exchange for defenseman Alec Regula.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Perlini requested a trade last week after seeing limited playing time with the Blackhawks. He could provide a bit of a boost to the struggling Red Wings’ anemic offense. Regula currently skates for the OHL’s London Knights.

WINNIPEG SUN: Jets center Adam Lowry received a two-game suspension for a dangerous hit on Calgary Flames defenseman Oliver Kylington during Saturday’s Heritage Classic game in Regina.

TSN: The Flames placed winger Tobias Rieder on waivers.

TORONTO SUN: Maple Leafs defenseman Travis Dermott will make his season debut tonight against the Washington Capitals. He was sidelined by offseason shoulder surgery.

NJ.COM: New Jersey Devils defenseman Connor Carrick required surgery to repair a broken finger. He’ll be sidelined four-to-six weeks.

CBS SPORTS: Columbus Blue Jackets defenseman Ryan Murray will miss three-to-four weeks with a broken hand.

Dallas Stars blueliners Andrej Sekera (undisclosed injury) won’t play tonight against the Minnesota Wild.

Vegas Golden Knights defenseman Deryk Engelland is day-to-day with a minor lower-body injury.

NBC SPORTS: San Jose Sharks defenseman Radim Simek will join their AHL affiliate on a conditioning stint. He hasn’t played since undergoing season-ending knee surgery last March.

TRIBLIVE.COM: The Pittsburgh Penguins assigned Joseph Blandisi and Adam Johnson to their AHL affililate.

NEW YORK POST: The Rangers called up Filip Chytil and Ryan Lindgren.










NHL Rumor Mill – October 26, 2019

NHL Rumor Mill – October 26, 2019

The latest on the Penguins and Blackhawks plus some suggested destinations for Josh Ho-Sang in today’s NHL rumor mill.

WHAT WILL THE PENGUINS DO WITH THEIR EXTRA SALARY-CAP ROOM?

THE ATHLETIC: Rob Rossi examines what the Pittsburgh Penguins could do with their extra cap room beyond this season after trading Erik Gudbranson and his $4-million annual salary-cap hit to Anaheim yesterday. They could attempt to re-sign goaltender Matt Murray or defenseman Marcus Petterson to a contract extension. He also suggests packaging goaltender Tristan Jarry with a forward like Nick Bjugstad, Zach Aston-Reese or Dominik Kahun for a rental scorer.

Could the Pittsburgh Penguins used their recently freed-up salary-cap space to re-sign goaltender Matt Murray? (Photo via NHL Images)

SPECTOR’S NOTE: I believe that extra $4 million will go toward Murray, who’s a restricted free agent with arbitration rights next summer. It wouldn’t be surprising if Rutherford swings another trade later this season. He could bring in a rental player or perhaps something that provides some long-term help. For now, I think he’ll wait for his roster to get healthier to gauge their performance before making another move.

FIVE SUGGESTED TRADE DESTINATIONS FOR HO-SANG

THE HOCKEY NEWS: The Edmonton Oilers, Boston Bruins, and Arizona Coyotes top Steven Ellis’ list of suggested trade destinations for Josh Ho-Sang. The winger is currently in Toronto awaiting a trade by the New York Islanders.

Ellis believes the Oilers should swap Jesse Puljujarvi for Ho-Sang. Puljujarvi is playing in Finland awaiting a trade. Ellis suggests a reunion with midget hockey linemate Connor McDavid might spark Ho-Sang.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: As I explained in a recent Rumor Roundup for The Hockey News, Puljujarvi is believed to have more upside than Ho-Sang. There’s a belief the young Finn can still blossom into a top-six winger, something Ho-Sang hasn’t done at the NHL and AHL levels.

Ellis felt Ho-Sang could be an affordable fix for the Bruins’ lack of right-wing depth. He also suggests the Coyotes flip disappointing Christian Fischer or struggling Lawson Crouse for Ho-Sang.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: If the Bruins though Ho-Sang would help they would’ve acquired him by now. I’m not sure the Coyotes are willing to give up on Fletcher but could part with Crouse. As Ellis points out, he and Ho-Sang are once-promising prospects who haven’t played up to potential.

Ellis also suggests the Carolina Hurricanes and Ottawa Senators as possible destinations.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: The Hurricanes are believed in the market for a top-nine forward. They were angling for winger Ondrej Kase in trade talks regarding defenseman Justin Faulk with the Anaheim Ducks before shipping the blueliner to St. Louis. Ho-Sang isn’t in Kase’s class. The rebuilding Senators, meanwhile, don’t appear to be interested in the Islanders’ winger.

LATEST ON THE BLACKHAWKS

CHICAGO SUN-TIMES: Madeline Kenney reports Blackhawks forward Brendan Perlini confirmed TSN’s recent report claiming he has requested a trade. He’s discouraged by his lack of playing time after being a healthy scratch in seven of their eight games this season. Kenney said Perlini doesn’t want his situation to become a distraction for his teammates.

OTTAWA SUN: Bruce Garrioch reports Blackhawks center Zack Smith has popped up in the rumor mill. He’s been hampered by a back issue and only suited up for five games. Smith carries an annual average value of $3.25 million through next season. Garrioch believes he’ll have limited value in the trade market.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Perlini, 23, has power-forward potential, netting 17 goals with the Arizona Coyotes in 2017-18. He’ll have more value than Smith.










NHL Rumor Mill – October 25, 2019

NHL Rumor Mill – October 25, 2019

Updates on Taylor Hall, Nicklas Backstrom, Braden Holtby, and Brendan Perlini, plus updates on the Sharks and Senators, in today’s NHL rumor mill.

HIGHLIGHTS FROM THE LATEST “INSIDER TRADING.”

TSN: Pierre LeBrun expects the agent for New Jersey Devils winger Taylor Hall to meet with general manager Ray Shero within the next two weeks. The dialogue between the two sides has been very transparent, including almost daily communication between Hall and Shero. The winger, however, is nowhere close to deciding on taking negotiations to the next level.

The Washington Capitals and Nicklas Backstrom could let the season play out before discussing a new contract (Photo via NHL Images).

LeBrun also said there’s no hurry between the Washington Capitals and pending free agents Nicklas Backstrom and Braden Holtby to reach agreements on new contracts. There’s been a dialogue between the team and the two players but they’ve decided to let the season play out for a while. The salary cap, the Capitals’ status as a contender, and promising goalie Ilya Samsonov are behind this decision.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Hall could be waiting to see how things pan out for the Devils this season before reaching a decision. Money and term won’t be an issue for the Devils. I think it comes down to whether Hall believes the Devils are building a true Stanley Cup contender.

Backstrom and Holtby aren’t getting as much attention as Hall in the rumor mill. The Capitals’ wait-and-see approach is one reason but there’s also a widespread assumption Backstrom will be re-signed and Holtby will depart via free agency, especially if Samsonov keeps making the case for more starts this season.

Bob McKenzie reports the Chicago Blackhawks are working with Brendan Perlini’s agent to find him a new NHL home. He’s skated in just one game this season.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: The 6’3″, 211-pound Perlini has power forward potential, tallying 17 goals with the Coyotes in 2017-18. At 23, he still has time to reach his full potential with the right club. He’s on a cap-friendly one-year contract worth over $874K and shouldn’t be too costly to acquire.

COULD THE SHARKS SHOP VLASIC OR DILLON?

THE ATHLETIC: In a recent mailbag segment, Kevin Kurz was asked if the San Jose Sharks could consider trading Marc-Edouard Vlasic or Brenden Dillon. He doesn’t see them shopping Dillon right now as he’s been their most consistent defenseman this season. If the Sharks are out of the playoffs by the February trade deadline, perhaps they’ll consider shopping the pending UFA.

Vlasic’s recent struggles are cause for concern but his no-movement clause makes a trade unlikely. Kurz wondered if the Montreal Canadiens might be interested but Vlasic hasn’t given any previous desire to play for his hometown club.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Of the two, Dillon would be the easiest to move but I don’t think the Sharks are entertaining that option. Vlasic’s contract is nearly ironclad. If he doesn’t want to be traded there’s nothing Sharks management can do about it. I don’t believe he wants to play under the harsh spotlight in Montreal.

LATEST ON THE SENATORS

OTTAWA SUN: Bruce Garrioch reports Senators general manager Pierre Dorion is working the phones in search of forward depth but his best bet could come from within the organization. Garrioch cites three league executives claiming the pickings are slim in the trade market. He said Minnesota Wild forwards Kevin Fiala, Joel Eriksson Ek, and Ryan Donato are on the market.

Garrioch also listed Tyler Toffoli but believes the Los Angeles Kings’ pending UFA is a likely trade-deadline candidate. He also said the Pittsburgh Penguins have some forwards they’d like to move.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: For what it’s worth, Minnesota Wild GM Bill Guerin is preaching patience despite his club’s poor start, claiming he won’t make any panic moves. I agree that Toffoli is more likely to be moved near the Feb. 24 trade deadline if the Kings fail to re-sign him.

All of the reports out of Pittsburgh claim the Penguins want to move a defenseman like Jack Johnson or Erik Gudbranson. They’ll have to make some room once sidelined forwards Evgeni Malkin, Alex Galchenyuk, and Bryan Rust return to action. However, they could do so by demoting forwards Sam Lafferty and Adam Johnson, who are waiver exempt.

Updates on Taylor Hall, Nicklas Backstrom, Braden Holtby, and Brendan Perlini plus updates on the Senators and Sharks in today’s NHL rumor mill.