NHL Rumors: Canucks interested in Kravtsov, and could the Rangers target Devils’ Zacha?

nhl rumors
Oct 1, 2021; Newark, New Jersey, USA; New Jersey Devils center Pavel Zacha (37) (not shown) scores a goal on New York Rangers goaltender Adam Huska (32) during the third period at Prudential Center. Mandatory Credit: Ed Mulholland-USA TODAY Sports

The Vancouver are expected to be an active team at the NHL Trade Deadline. While there’s been a lot of talk about who they might move off the team, there’s been very little by way of whom they might be interested in.

As of late, that seems to be changing.

NHL Rumors: Canucks interested in Kravtsov

The New York Rangers have been strongly attached to former Blueshirt and current Canuck forward J.T. Miller.

Thomas Drance of The Athletic acknowledged that fact and even added one of the pieces that could be coming to Vancouver to facilitate the trade.

Our sources were split as to whether Kravtsov had ever been part of any latent trade discussion between the Rangers and the Canucks, however. What is clearer is that Kravtsov is a player of interest for the Canucks and that interest may not necessarily be tethered to any of the flashy star-level players popping up in Canucks-centric trade rumours as we approach the NHL’s silly season.

The Athletic
vitali kravtsov trade
Apr 20, 2021; Uniondale, New York, USA; New York Islanders defenseman Nick Leddy (2) and New York Rangers right wing Vitali Kravtsov (74) fight for the puck during the second period at Nassau Veterans Memorial Coliseum. Mandatory Credit: Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports

Kravtsov, 22, is playing really well for Traktor in the KHL. In 19 games, he’s registered 6 goals, 7 assists for 13 points.

He was selected by the Rangers in the 2018 Draft, 9th overall. His situation and fallout with the organization is well documented. GM Chris Drury has been ready to trade him since his demand went public in October.

Of course, Kravtsov alone won’t get it done. If a deal is made, expect a righthanded defenseman like Nils Lundkvist to be part of the trade.

Pavel Zacha a wanted commodity

Another player the Canucks may be targeting is Devils’ forward Pavel Zacha.

“The Vancouver Canucks have interest in, or at least curious about is Pavel Zacha,” Jeff Marek said. “He is an impending RFA, but he’s one year away from becoming a UFA. He can take his qualifying offer and walk after a year.”

Zacha, 24, has 22 points in 45 games this season. His current cap hit is $2.25 Million.

The Devils are loaded down the middle with Jack Hughes, Nico Hischier, and Dawson Mercer leaving Marek to wonder where Zacha fits going forward. He added that other teams are calling on Zacha as well.

One of those teams could be the Rangers, who can use a player like Zacha themselves. With PK Subban heading to UFA status, would a deal involving either Zac Jones or Nils Lundkvist make sense there?

A trade between the two teams has only happened once before in 2018. Michael Grabner was sent by the Rangers to the Devils for defenseman Yegor Rykov and a second-round pick.