NHL Rumors Roundup: Stars, Oilers, Coyotes, Rangers, and more
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Sunday is a great time to digest a week’s worth of NHL Rumors and coupling it with the latest information to look ahead.
Three names are currently dominating the trade rumor mill lately. Dallas Stars defenseman John Klingberg, Arizona Coyotes defenseman Jakob Chychrun, and free agent forward Evander Kane. That has also impacted the rankings of the latest NHL Trade Bait Tracker and may change even more after this update.
NHL Rumors: Stars ramping up trade efforts on Klingberg
This past week, a report surfaced that John Klingberg demanded a trade. The 29 year-old rearguard wanted to clarify that notion.
“I don’t think it’s entirely true,” Klingberg said via The Dallas Morning News. “It’s not like I’ve been going out there and asking ‘I want to get traded now,’ or something like that. It’s something that’s been going on with the negotiations and stuff like that.”
Klingberg has 17 points in 30 games this season. According to multiple reports, the two sides had been talking but are too far apart on a deal to prevent him from becoming a UFA this summer. He’s looking for an 8 year deal in the neighborhood of $63 million.
Last night on HNIC, Jeff Marek updated the situation.
“We can report today that the Dallas Stars have upped their efforts to traDe John Klingberg,” he said. “We don’t when but the Stars hope it’s soonish.”
As far as trade destination go, Marek mentioned back in November that the Carolina Hurricanes are interested. Larry Brooks in the NY Post recently speculated that New York Rangers will be in on the pending UFA rental as well.
Evander Kane to the Oilers no sure thing
According to Elliotte Friedman, several teams have already decided to not go any further down the road with Evander Kane.
Kane received a 21-game NHL suspension in October for submitting a fake vaccination card. He appeared in five games with the AHL’s San Jose Barracuda this season and tallied two goals and six assists before being placed in the protocol on Dec. 22.
Kane led the Sharks in goals (22) and assists (27) while appearing in all 56 games last season.
While it is possible he could sign a deal, the risk of a season long suspension would mean dead cap space for the acquiring team.
That’s why a few teams, that likely includes the Oilers are waiting until this week to decide on signing Kane as they hope for more clarity on a potential suspension.
As far as the Oilers, they blew a lead against the Senators last night leaving Connor McDavid frustrated and speechless. Expect them to go hard for a goalie soon. Anton Khudobin and Joonas Korpisalo are two likely candidates.
Jakob Chychrun landing spots
Chychrun, 23, has just 7 points in 26 games but the Yotes’ this season and is dealing with an injury. Last year was a breakout for him with 41 points in 56 games. The left-handed rearguard has three years left on a cap friendly deal of $4.6 million.
“A couple of offers have given the Coyotes cause for pause,” Jeff Marek said on Sportsnet. “Here’s what they are looking for in exchange. It’s not unlike the old Brent Burns deal, which was Devin Setoguchi, Charlie Coyle, and a first round pick. So what the Coyotes are looking for is a young player, a high-end prospect, plus a first round pick.”
Marek also added the Los Angeles Kings, St. Louis Blues, and Anaheim Ducks have the prospects and desire to make that deal. All make a lot of sense, but if up to ten teams have supposedly reached out it is hard to imagine the Rangers not in the mix.
Rangers and Tomas Hertl
Speaking of the New York Rangers who find themselves atop the Metro Division standings as we near the halfway mark. They are going to be buyers and Tomas Hertl is likely high atop their list.
The NHL Trade Deadline of March 21 will come upon teams quickly. If the Sharks can’t work out a deal would they make him available?
“He has almost a 100 per cent no-trade clause,” Pierre LeBrun said. “Only three teams are on his “yes” list. He has lots of control and one team to keep an eye on is the New York Rangers, who I think have him on their list.”
Hertl would be a great fit for a Rangers playoff run. He could automatically slot as a top six winger. He also has the ability to play center which could prove valuable going beyond this season.
Hertl is 28 years-old and in the final year of a deal that has a $5.625M cap hit. Last season, he recorded 43 points in 50 games. This season, he’s keeping a similar scoring pace with 31 points in 39 contests.
Other rumor notes
Chris Johnston of the Toronto Star is reporting that the Vancouver Canucks are looking to offload back up goaltender Jaros Halak.
The 36 year-old is 1-4-2 in 8 appearances this season. He signed a one-year deal this summer for just $1.5 million, but there are achievable bonuses that can have that become $3 million. Including a $1.25 million performance bonus for hitting 10 games.
Halak has a no-move clause.
On the Canadiens GM front, Kent Hughes is quite likely a leading candidate as the Habs completed another round of interviews. The player-agent knows Jeff Gorton well.