Today’s NHL rumors is loaded with interesting tidbits from around the league. And more fallout from the blockbuster trade between the Jets and Jackets.
NHL Rumors: Ducks tried to acquire Pierre-Luc Dubois and others unsuccessfully
In a recent article in The Athletic, Eric Stephens does a deep dive as to why GM Bob Murray was unsuccessful in trading for either Justin Faulk, Kasperi Kapanen, and Pierre-Luc Dubois,
And if Kekalainen wanted Trevor Zegras – which is believed to be the case – for Dubois then Murray might be proven right to hold on to this year’s world juniors MVP. Moving either Zegras or Drysdale isn’t feasible unless you think Dubois is going to be a top-10 player for years to come. Even if Zegras was included, it’s a wonder if a package highlighting him could compare with Laine and Roslovic as the Blue Jackets are out to win now.The Athletic
The Ducks are trying to get better and the only way they can do that with their current cap situation is to make trades. By the way, Anaheim’s current cap space per CapFriendly is a big fat 0.
Murray is dealing with an aging and expensive lineup. Ryan Getzlaf is 35 years-old and makes $8.25 million. He represents 10% of the team’s cap and is not producing at that price tag any longer.
Trading away a young asset like Trevor Zegras doesn’t help the Ducks future. Anaheim will be in a much better position once Getzlaf comes off the books next season.
NHL Rumors: Jack Eichel’s future with the Rangers?
The Athletic’s Craig Custance sent out a survey to 21 player agents back in November to ask a variety of questions. He did so on the condition of anonymity in order to elicit unfiltered responses.
“Jack Eichel,” one anonymous agent said is very likely to be traded. “He’s an interesting one. At some point, he’s just going to say, enough. Buffalo and losing is not fun.”
So could the 24 year-old pivot get dealt this upcoming season? New Sabres GM, Kevyn Adams said he’s listening but has no intention of trading Eichel. Here’s the rub, it’s not solely because they don’t want to, it’s also because they paid him to play already this season, shelling out a $7 million signing bonus check.
The growing talk around NHL circles is that if Eichel does get traded the most likely destination is going to be the New York Rangers. They have the right amount NHL talent and high end prospects to get it done.
They also have a willingness to improve at center. Let’s not forget, they’ve already checked in on Eichel once this past offseason.
NHL Rumors: Why Patrik Laine wanted out of Winnipeg
Patrik Laine is now a happy member of the Columbus Blue Jackets. But why did he want out of Winnipeg in the first place? Finnish paper Iltalehti has what they say are the answers, which appears to have something to do with Laine’s teammates.
[Blake] Wheeler felt his position on the right side of the No. 1 line was threatened because Laine was originally the right winger. Wheeler was also not enthusiastic that the young Finn was becoming almost as popular in Winnipeg as Teemu Selänne.
[Mark] Scheifele, who was on the team captain’s line, made it clear to everyone that he wanted to play with Wheeler.ILTALEHTI
Wheeler has admitted that he could’ve handled things better with Laine. However, when pressed to what that meant spoke of getting frustrated on one end, then saying he “coddled” Laine.
“Maybe I could have communicated a little better instead of just getting frustrated,” Jets captain Blake Wheeler said. “That would be the extent of it. Never once was I hard on Patty, far from it. If anything, I was very respectful and coddled a teenager and a young 20-year-old. … maybe if I could have communicated better, maybe it would have made things better.”NHL.com
Even head coach Paul Maurice accepted culpability for why things didn’t work out in Winnipeg. He noted that at times he struggled to find a fit for Laine.