NHL Rumors: Five players that would heat up the trade market if made available

claude giroux trade
Dec 16, 2021; Montreal, Quebec, CAN; Philadelphia Flyers center Claude Giroux (28) during the warm-up session before the game against Montreal Canadiens at Bell Centre. Mandatory Credit: Jean-Yves Ahern-USA TODAY Sports

As we near the end of the year with COVID once again wreaking havoc and uncertainty, we wish you all the very best. The NHL is working hard to reschedule postponed games in the February break that was meant for the Olympics, but they also need to prevent the round of disruptions.

Tweaks are being discussed concerning taxi squads, and possibly some salary cap exemptions. While the league works those out, teams are still thinking about how to improve.

The NHL trade deadline is March 21, 2022 and these are five names that could set the market on fire if they become available.

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NHL Rumors: Jakob Chychrun

At the top of our list is Arizona Coyotes Jakob Chychrun. He leads the pack because he’s not a rental. This is a young defenseman with a great contract and years left on it. His deal has three years left on it at just $4.6 million.

Chychrun, 23, had a breakout performance with 41 points in 56 games during the 2020-21 season. This year he has just 7 points in 26 games but the Yotes’ lineup is filled with young prospects and several aging NHL vets.

Sportsnet’s Nick Kypreos recently stated that if Chychrun, the return would be high. Most likely four pieces including first round picks.

Are the Coyotes really shopping him or are teams just asking is the question. If he is officially made available almost every team will be in on him.

J.T. Miler would be a wanted man

jt miller trade
Jan 28, 2021; Vancouver, British Columbia, CAN; Vancouver Canucks forward J.T. Miller (9) checks Ottawa Senators defenseman Braydon Coburn (55) in the third period at Rogers Arena. Vancouver won 4-1. Mandatory Credit: Bob Frid-USA TODAY Sports

When things were hitting rock-bottom in Vancouver, J.T. Miller’s name hit the rumor wire.

A number of teams have been circling around Miller (including one of his old teams, the New York Rangers) amid the Canucks’ disastrous season, although it seems as if GM Jim Benning does not have the full autonomy to make a core-altering trade at the moment. 

Frank Seravalli, DFO

The 28 year-old has one more year left on his deal worth $5.25M before becoming a UFA. He’s also been extremely productive with 32 points in 31 games for Vancouver this season. Since joining the Canucks he has 150 points in 153 contests.

Miller is unlikely to be moved if the Canucks continue winning and climbing up the standings. However, if the Boudreau-bump gives out and he is available at the deadline, Vancouver will get a lot of good pieces.

Tomas Hertl, to trade or not to trade

Hertl, 28, is in the last year of a deal with a $5.625M cap hit. His pending UFA status made him talked about as a trade candidate early in the season. However, the Sharks are in playoff contention and will not move him if they are still in it come March.

Last season, he recorded 43 points in 50 games and is posting decent numbers this year with 22 points in 30 contests.

Per reports, the Sharks told inquiring teams in the offseason that they were still hopeful to work things out and Hertl is open to staying. One thing is for sure, if he hits the open market the Sharks will easily get a first round pick for him.

Marc-Andre Fleury is an interesting name

marc-andre fleury
Oct 16, 2021; Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, USA; Chicago Blackhawks goaltender Marc-Andre Fleury (29) takes the ice to warm up before the game against the Pittsburgh Penguins at PPG Paints Arena. Mandatory Credit: Charles LeClaire-USA TODAY Sports

Fleury, 37, had a rough start to the season, as did all the Hawks, but has settled in and helped Chicago win some games. His numbers are respectable all things considered with a .913 SV% and a 2.86 GAA and if he were open to trade, it would set some contenders hot after him.

“Chicago has not made up their minds yet,” ESPN’s Emily Kaplan reported. “If a trade proposal does come for Marc-Andre Fleury they are definitely open to listening to it..”

MAF is in the final year of a contract that pays $7M and has modified no-trade protection. He had to be convinced not to retire and report to Chicago, so this would be a complex deal with Fleury in complete control. However, imagine Fleury joining Alex Ovechkin in Washington for a Cup run.

Claude Giroux on his way out

Giroux, 33, has spent his entire stellar career with the Flyers. He’s amassed 883 points in 973 games with the franchise. His next point will break a tie with Bill Barber and make him the second all-time leading scorer behind Bobby Clarke (1210).

Of course, he is a pending UFA and the Flyers don’t appear to be going anywhere.

This is the final year of a contract that comes with a $8.275M cap hit. He has 25 points in 29 games and would instantly go to the top of the trade rental market.

Editor’s note: Thank you all for reading this year – Happy Holidays!