NHL Rumors: Rangers trade targets; Jack Eichel blasted by Buffalo podcast; Canadiens and Sens interested in Vitali Kravtsov

The latest NHL Rumors buzz.

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

The New York Rangers have not gotten the offensive production they have hoped for on right wing after trading Pavel Buchnevich. Kaapo Kakko, who is projected to be a first line winger has yet to register a point this season.

This has led to a lot of talk on possible targets for a trade.

NHL Rumors: Rangers trade targets

Many people will immediately point to Vladimir Tarasenko with the Blues, who has an outstanding trade request. Although he would be a great fit, the 29 year-old has another year left on a contract that will pay him $7.5M against the salary cap.

Next season, both Mika Zibanejad’s ($8.5M) and Adam Fox’s ($9.5M) extensions will kick in. Kaapo Kakko and Sammy Blais will also be RFA’s so the cap squeeze is on.

That’s why Larry Brooks is looking for certain pending UFA rentals that could help for this season only. He calls out:

  • Reilly Smith (VGK)
  • Tomas Hertl (SJS)
  • Nazem Kadri (COL)
  • David Perron (STL)

All four would make sense, but it’s unlikely that the Sharks will move Hertl as long as they keep winning. The Avs on the other hand need scoring so giving up Kadri isn’t an option either.

Smith is someone that head coach Gerard Gallant knows well from his time in Vegas and is something to monitor as the Knights gets healthy and need to shed salary. Perron is also another interesting option.

Per a source, a name the Rangers are keeping an eye on is Filip Forsberg in Nashville.

Canadiens and Senators interested in Kravtsov

rangers trade rumors
Apr 6, 2021; New York, New York, USA; Vitali Kravtsov #74 of the New York Rangers prepares to skates against the Pittsburgh Penguins during the first period at Madison Square Garden on April 06, 2021 in New York City.. Mandatory Credit: Bruce Bennett/POOL PHOTOS-USA TODAY Sports

According to Frank Seravalli of The Daily Faceoff, the Habs and Sens have contacted the Rangers about Vitali Kravtsov.

League sources say the Montreal Canadiens and Ottawa Senators were the two teams who expressed the most interest in Kravtsov, who refused his assignment to AHL Hartford and forced his way back to Russia. The Rangers gave Kravtsov’s agent, Dan Milstein, permission to help seek a trade.

The Daily Faceoff

Kravtsov, 21, is on loan to Traktor in the KHL after officially signing a one year deal for the season. Other reports indicate that the Rangers can recall Kravtsov at any time. Considering how things transpired that’s unlikely to happen.

The latest ask for Kravtsov from Rangers GM Chris Drury is another top prospect in return.

Buffalo podcast blast Jack Eichel

Maybe it’s just sour grapes, but a Buffalo centric podcast was not too kind towards Jack Eichel after the trade.

After The Whistle is hosted by Andrew Peters and Craig Rivet, two well known radio personalities in Buffalo. They were talking with Elliotte Friedman about the trade and Peters wanted to separate the hockey player from the person.

“Let’s not get the hockey player confused with the person,” Rivet began. “He was a Hart ballot (MVP) on the ice and off the ice he was the exact opposite.”

The conversation continued into Eichel’s attitude towards people in Buffalo not being positive. A little unfair without Eichel being able to defend himself against the accusations. The exchange begins at 10:34 below.