NHL Rumors: First round pick starting point for Taylor Hall, Canadiens have more moves coming, Hurricanes were in on Eric Staal and may move a goalie

taylor hall islanders
Feb 22, 2021; Uniondale, New York, USA; Buffalo Sabres left wing Taylor Hall (4) has his shot blocked by New York Islanders goaltender Semyon Varlamov (40) while being checked by center Anders Lee (27) during the third period at Nassau Veterans Memorial Coliseum. Mandatory Credit: Andy Marlin-USA TODAY Sports

The sale has begun in Buffalo as the Sabres traded away Eric Staal yesterday to the Canadiens for two draft picks. Next up on the list is probably Taylor Hall as GM Kevyn Adams has been speaking to a number of teams about him.

NHL Rumors: Sabres want a first round pick and more for Taylor Hall

Miserable season be damned, the Sabres want a haul for Hall. According to Pierre LeBrun the starting point must begin with a first round pick. Even though he suggests that might be tough, you know if there are several teams already asking just over two weeks out they will get it.

The 29 year-old is having an abysmal season by his standards. In 32 games he only has two goals and 17 points. To be fair, this has to be simply considered the Buffalo Effect. The Sabres are the worst team in the NHL and are missing Jack Eichel to boot. Their defensive structure is non-existent and goaltending has been bad or injured all year. Contenders are taking this all into account when looking at Hall and realize this one time Hart Trophy winner can still be a huge help in a playoff run.

Teams reportedly interested are the Islanders, Maple Leafs, and Panthers.

NHL Rumors: Canadiens not done after acquiring Eric Staal

It was barely 24 hours after Marc Bergevin told the media that the Montreal Canadiens were not likely to do anything at the deadline. “We have no cap space, so it’s money in, money out,” he said. “Expectation to do something at the deadline is probably very unlikely.” Then he went out and traded for Eric Staal and it’s believed he has more moves to make.

Sportsnet’s Eric Engels think Bergevin is going to try and clear cap space in order to sign prospect Cole Caufield whose season with Wisconsin ended. It isn’t hard to believe, especially when Badgers head coach says that’s what he expects to happen.

“He’s going to get a call, I’m sure, from his agent and from Montreal real soon,” Granato said. “The Canadiens watched him play this year, the scouts all watched him play this year, so they have a plan. I don’t know that plan. I’m assuming that plan is to try to get him up there as fast as they can, so he’ll have to answer to some calls really quick.”

Sportsnet

NHL Rumors: Canes were in on Staal ready to trade goalie

Eric Staal waived his no trade to go to Montreal as they were not on his 10 team trade list. One team that was interested according to Pierre LeBrun was the Hurricanes who made calls to Buffalo about him.

In a recent interview with The Athletic, GM Don Waddell stated he’d been willing to trade one of his goalies and is looking for a right handed shot defenseman.

“We don’t have a lot of [NHL salary] cap space,” Waddell said in remarks published Friday. “If we’re going to do something at the trade deadline, maybe one of the chips is one of our goalies. I can’t say which one. It depends.”

Don Waddell via NHL.com
eric staal canadiens
Feb 27, 2021; Buffalo, New York, USA; Buffalo Sabres center Eric Staal (12) and Philadelphia Flyers center Sean Couturier (14) battle for position in from of Buffalo goaltender Carter Hutton (40) during the third period at KeyBank Center. Mandatory Credit: Timothy T. Ludwig-USA TODAY Sports