NHL Rumors: Erik Karlsson to Oilers, Jakob Chychrun to Kings, and Trade Deadline notes

Today’s NHL Rumors kicks off with a deep dive into the Erik Karlsson trade rumors.

Karlsson, 32, is having an insane season with 18 goals and 73 points in 54 games. He is easily the favorite to win the Norris Trophy, despite playing for the defensively inept San Jose Sharks.

As the NHL Trade Deadline set for March 3 approaches, his name is really starting to heat up the Rumor Mill.

NHL Rumors: Erik Karlsson to Oilers

When it comes to Karlsson, I’m shocked that there’s really this much buzz surrounding him. Not just because of how great he’s been, but due to his contract which has four years remaining at a whopping $11.5M AAV. He also has a full no-move clause that must be considered.

Karlsson trade rumors recently boiled over this past weekend thanks to the latest 32 Thoughts Segment with Jeff Marek and Elliotte Friedman.

“The Edmonton Oilers have made it clear that one of their key acquisitions is going to be a puck moving defenseman,” Friedman revealed. “For this to work, Karlsson has to be about a $6.6 to $7 million player for the Oilers. His salary for the next four years is about $11.5 million. So basically, they need San Jose to eat about $5 million for the next four seasons.”

Would the Sharks really eat that much salary for that long? I have a hard time seeing it happen. What would the Oilers need to give up for this to come to fruition?

Sure, you can throw in Jesse Puljujarvi and this year’s first-round pick to get the ball rolling, but it’s not enough for the Sharks to do it. What about adding first-round picks until 2025? The bottom line is the Oilers need to seriously incentivize the Sharks to pay a player $5 million to not play for them.

The Oilers have also been linked to Arizona’s Shayne Gostibehere and Columbus’ Vladislav Gavrikov.

NHL Rumors: Jakob Chychrun to the Kings?

Jakob Chychrun
Mar 10, 2022; Toronto, Ontario, CAN; Arizona Coyotes defenseman Jakob Chychrun (6) celebrates with team mates at the bench after scoring against the Toronto Maple Leafs in the first period at Scotiabank Arena. Mandatory Credit: Dan Hamilton-USA TODAY Sports

When the Arizona Coyotes scratched Jakob Chychrun prior to their game Saturday night due “trade related reasons,” it set off a firestorm of speculation. Jeff Marek immediately addressed it on Sportsnet’s HNIC coverage saying that it’s not the Edmonton Oilers or Toronto Maple Leafs that are in on the talented defenseman.

“The L.A. Kings are throwing cold water on [trade rumors],” Marek said. “Keep in mind this is Dustin Brown night…retiring Number 23 but we’ll see where this one goes.”

GM Rob Blake has been looking to improve his defense for some time and is one of the few teams with assets to meet Arizona’s asking price of what amounts to three first-round picks.

Chychrun, 24, has scored 28 points in 36 games this season. He has 3 years remaining on his contract (this season plus two more) with an excellent AAV of $4.6 million. That’s great value for a cost-controlled top 4 d-man.

As far as what the Kings would send the other way, it would likely be a prospect like Alex Turcotte and their first-round pick in 2023 for starters. One player they’re highly unlikely to include is Quinton Byfield.

The expectation is for Chychrun to be traded early this week.

NHL Trade Deadline Tidbits

Alex DeBrincat not available

Many people are wondering what will happen with pending RFA Alex DeBrincat and the Ottawa Senators at the deadline. There’s been little to no news on a contract extension.

“The Senators have been asked about Alex DeBrincat,” Friedman noted. “They’ve indicated they’re not trading him at this deadline. I think they want to wait until the ownership is set up to attack contract talks.”

DeBrincat, 25, has 42 points in 51 games this season.

Tyler Bertuzzi is not going to be extended

The Detroit Red Wings are likely to extend their captain Dylan Larkin, but Tyler Bertuzzi may be wearing a new uniform before next week.

Jeff Marek believes the Dallas Stars and Tampa Bay Lightning are in the mix to acquire the pending UFA forward.

Bertuzzi, 27, has just 7 points in 20 games in 2022-23.

Vitali Kravtsov on the block

The New York Rangers are going all in for the Stanley Cup this season and put the league on notice by acquiring Vladimir Tarasenko and Niko Mikkola last week. Now, they will be trading former 9th overall pick Vitali Kravtsov to help bolster their bottom six.

Per Larry Brooks of the NY Post, Kravtsov has requested a trade and it’s expect GM Chris Drury will accommodate.

Over at Forever Blueshirts, I noted to keep your eyes on the Rangers and Arizona Coyotes over the next few days. The Yotes have two potential targets in Nick Bjugstad and Nick Ritchie that could make for a suitable trade partner involving Kravtsov.

In July, the 23 year-old will be an RFA with arbitration rights. He has six points in 28 games this season.