NHL Rumors Roundup: Blackhawks rebuild, Canucks changes, Bo Horvat, and Dylan Larkin

nhl rumors blackhawks
Oct 27, 2022; Chicago, Illinois, USA; Chicago Blackhawks center Max Domi (13) reacts after scoring a goal against the Edmonton Oilers during the second period at the United Center. Mandatory Credit: Mike Dinovo-USA TODAY Sports

Today’s NHL Rumors looks at the Chicago Blackhawks potential assets to be moved in their rebuild and an update on the Vancouver Canucks situation.

Plus could the Detroit Red Wings be eyeing Bo Horvat as Dylan Larkin’s replacement?

NHL Rumors: Blackhawks rebuild

The Chicago Blackhawks are off to a surprising 4-3-1 start to the season but the plans to rebuild are still moving forward.

Everyone knows that the two biggest names to watch for are Patrick Kane and Jonathan Toews. Of course they’re not the only pending unrestricted free agents to keep an eye on.

Sportsnet’s Mark Spector highlights two more players GM Kyle Davidson will trade in his latest article.

He’ll move expiring contracts in Max Domi and Andreas Athanasiou, but will have to consult with Kane and Toews on their destinations. The two have identical deals with no-move clauses, an AAV of $10.5 million, and $2.9 million of actual salary left to be paid after signing bonuses this season. 

Sportsnet

Another interesting nugget is the reveal that Patrick Kane may opt to re-sign with the Hawks for a discount to lead the rebuild.

Ultimately, the majority of insiders see Kane either on Broadway reunited with Artemi Panarin or the Colorado Avalanche.

NHL Rumors: Canucks changes

nhl rumors patrick kane bo horvat
Nov 21, 2021; Vancouver, British Columbia, CAN; Chicago Blackhawks forward Patrick Kane (88) and Vancouver Canucks forward Bo Horvat (53) look on as forward Juho Lammikko (91) strips the puck from forward Jonathan Toews (19) in the second period at Rogers Arena. Mandatory Credit: Bob Frid-USA TODAY Sports

Vancouver has won two in a row after a tumultuous start to the season.

According to Elliotte Friedman, their recent inspired play may have been spurned on by management with a direct message.

“The Vancouver Canucks made it very clear to some of their players that if there were changes, it wouldn’t just potentially be the head coach,” Friedman said on HNIC. “I think the players got that message loud and clear.”

While Bruce Boudreau is still on the hot seat, it sounds like Vancouver is open to trading certain roster players.

Could Bo Horvat be one of them?

NHL Rumors: Bo Horvat and Dylan Larkin

Horvat, 27, is playing well with 8 points in 9 games this season. Last year, he registered a career high 31 goals and 52 points in 70 games. He’s entering the final year of his contract with an AAV of $5.5 million. However, the general consensus is his next deal with be in the $7+ million range for max term.

Per Nick Kypreos, there’s a pretty good reason why Vancouver shifted priorities and inked J.T. Miller long term.

One question that isn’t being asked enough in Vancouver is why the Canucks, who spent the majority of the off-season trying to shop Miller, suddenly made him a priority over captain Bo Horvat, who is two years younger and staring at unrestricted free agency in the summer. The consistent message I’ve heard is that it had to do with Horvat rejecting a low-ball offer that wasn’t even close to what other comparable (centers) earn.

Nick Kypreos, Toronto Star

That led to Kypreos speculating that the Detroit Red Wings may opt to not give captain Dylan Larkin the huge contract he’s looking for and sign Horvat in the summer for less.

“When trade talks eventually heat up, keep an eye on the Detroit Red Wings,” Kypreos added. “With Dylan Larkin’s contract demands as high as what Mathew Barzal received from the New York Islanders (eight years at $9.15 million annually) Wings GM Steve Yzerman could instead choose to spend a good portion of that on Horvat.”

Interesting times ahead for some very good players.