NHL Rumor Mill – January 7, 2017

by | Jan 7, 2017 | Rumors | 56 comments

Could Colorado Avalanche captain Gabriel Landeskog kick up his heels with the Boston Bruins?

The Colorado Avalanche and Boston Bruins could be talking trade, plus the latest on the Toronto Maple Leafs, Tampa Bay Lightning and Ottawa Senators in your NHL rumor mill. 

BLEACHER REPORT’s Adrian Dater recently put out a series of tweets reporting he’s heard the Boston Bruins had talks with the Colorado Avalanche regarding left wing Gabriel Landeskog. He claims Avalanche general manager Joe Sakic wanted promising defenseman Brandon Carlo as part of the return but the Bruins declined, countering with unproven blueliner Jakub Zboril. Dater believes “Zboril, (Joe) Morrow, (Jake) DeBrusk and Bruins #1 pick could be part of a potential package.”

THE BOSTON GLOBE’S Kevin Paul Dupont, however, pointed out that “Landeskog cap hit is $5.5 million. Bruins can’t absorb it without moving a body or two.”

CSNNE.COM:  Joe Haggerty believes the slumping Bruins management must make a major move by either replacing head coach Claude Julien or swinging a major trade. He acknowledged the trade chatter linking the Bruins to Landeskog, but believes the Bruins will find it difficult to part with Carlo. 

THE DENVER POST:  In a recent mailbag segment, Mike Chambers said he doesn’t think anyone on the Avalanche is untouchable. He doubts Nathan MacKinnon and Miko Rantanen are going anywhere, “but you never know.” He believes the Avs won’t move a core player unless it’s for a substantial return. Chambers expects pending UFAs, such as Jarome Iginla, John Mitchell, Rene Bourque and Fedor Tyutin, will be unloaded but doesn’t expect the Avs to get much for them. Outside of MacKinnon, he feels center Matt Duchene could fetch the best return. 

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Landeskog to the Bruins seems an ideal fit for both clubs. The Bruins get a physical scoring forward to bring in some much-need offensive depth, while the Avs should get a package of promising blueline prospects. However, the key is Carlo and I really don’t see the Bruins parting with him. The speculation is Sakic wants a good young defenseman or top defensive prospects as part of the return for Landeskog. If the Bruins aren’t willing to part with Carlo, I don’t see a deal there. I daresay the Bruins aren’t the only team Sakic could be talking to regarding a possible trade. And as Dupont points out, the Bruins must find a way to free up cap space for Landeskog’s contract. 

THE ATHLETIC: In a recent mailbag segment, James Mirtle said he’s reasonably confident forwards James van Riemsdyk and Tyler Bozak do not fit into the Toronto Maple Leafs’ future plans. However, he doesn’t expect they’ll be moved by the March 1 trade deadline. With the Leafs in playoff contention, they don’t want to pull apart the roster and limp through the final weeks of the season. As for the possibility of the Leafs pursuing St. Louis Blues defenseman Kevin Shattenkirk via free agency in July, Mirtle thinks they should pass on such a potentially expensive commitment. 

SPORTSNET: Rory Boylen wonders if the Leafs will try to acquire a defenseman via trade this season. Such a move, however, could be expensive, speculating it could cost someone like van Riemsdyk or William Nylander to land a top-four blueliner. Boylen also cites Elliotte Friedman expressing doubt the Leafs would pursue a rental player, such as Arizona Coyotes defenseman Michael Stone, as they continue to look at the long-term picture. 

SPECTOR’S NOTE: If the Leafs move JVR and Bozak, it’ll be this summer, not while they’re in the thick of a playoff chase. Indeed, I can see them becoming buyers, but only for the right player at the right price. They won’t sacrifice futures for a quick fix, so forget about Nylander being dealt. Still,  I expect they’ll keep an eye on the trade market to see which defensemen become available. 

ESPN.COM: Pierre LeBrun reports the Tampa Bay Lightning’s depth at forward will affect their expansion draft plans. In order to protect forwards such as Nikita Kucherov, Tyler Johnson, Ondrej Palat, Alex Killorn, Jonathan Drouin, Vladislav Namestnikov and J.T. Brown, they could try to move Valtteri Filppula or Ryan Callahan. He notes Filppula, Callahan and Steven Stamkos must be protected because they carry no-movement clauses. He speculates the Lightning could try to convince Filppula or Callahan to waive their clause to either accept a trade or to be left unprotected in the expansion draft. 

LIGHTNING INSIDER: Erik Erlendsson believes the Lightning’s current struggles means the time for changes may be at hand. He feels the excuse of injuries to key players can only go so far. Erlendsson doesn’t feel it’s time for a coaching change yet. He points out the Bolts are in “dire need” of help on defense. 

SPECTOR’S NOTE: My guess is Filppula will be asked to waive his movement clause, either before the trade deadline or in mid-June.  As for possible changes now, the Bolts are still very close to a playoff spot. I don’t see GM Steve Yzerman making any panic moves, but I wouldn’t be surprised if he’s closely monitoring the trade market in search of blueline depth. 

OTTAWA SUN: Don Brennan believes Arizona Coyotes center Michael Hanzal would be a good fit with the Senators. “The 6-foot-6, 226-pound Czech would give Ottawa some much-needed size up the middle,” said Brennan, who also praised Hanzal’s two-way play. If they want him, Brennan advocates pursuing a deal soon, as he’ll attract considerable attention as the March 1 trade deadline approaches. 

SPECTOR’S NOTE: The problem with pursuing Hanzal now is the Coyotes apparently want a good young player who can help them right now in return. Senators GM Pierre Dorion’s been working the phones in recent weeks, but deals are very hard to come by right now. Hanzal’s injury history should also raise a “buyer beware” flag. 







56 Comments

  1. When Brennan comes up with these brainwaves I instinctively look at any of his proposals as a disaster-in-waiting. No thanks on Hanzal.

    • A younger more brittle rental version of David Legwand? No thank you

  2. Leafs with a big win last night over the Devils to move ahead of the Bruins into 8th place in the East, with three games in hand.

    BigBruin, you said the Leafs would spend the next six years making lottery picks as a repeat of the Oilers mistakes. What about the Bruins?

    Seems like BOS is in no man’s land, headed to a full blown tear down without realizing it.

    Backes, Krejci, Bergeron putting up Connor Brown (6th rounder for us) numbers isn’t going to make that teardown pretty.

    The Landeskog trade would only delay the inevitable.

    Landeskog for Zorbil + Debrusk + Morrow + your lottery 1st

    That’s four firsts essentially, all of them having declined from their optimistic draft assessments, especially Morrow, for a 53 pt player, headed for less this year. Desperate

    Meanwhile, Auston Matthews scored again, bringing his total to 21, inline with Unsustainable Laine, and second in the NHL behind only Crosby among C.

    • the Mathews, Laine thing is dumb. It will take years to see who has the bigger impact. both awesome players with neither being better or worse than the other right now. and ultimately neither can step out of Wieresnki;s shadow right now for what he is doing as a rookie d man. Much harder and more valuable that what Mathews or Laine have to do. Duh.

    • Ya, can we not do this today? lol
      I get it the Leafs are in a playoff spot and things are going well but I think they are a ways away from suddenly trolling the Bruins Jets Laine Bbb and anyone else you can think of in a single post.
      You keep saying what Laine is doing is unsustainable and for the most part I tend to agreeI also realize so is the pace that Mathews is going since he has got on this streak and has showed in the past that it’s capable for him to go 12 games with out a point so just calm down. Both are going to be fantastic The Leafs got their centre sit back and enjoy the ride Dan don’t need every thread to devolve into shots fired.

      • Hey Shticky….long time no post.

        This is about the most sane and reasonable post I think you have ever posted here.

        Happy New Year!

      • lol hey gary same to you, place hasn’t been the same with out your obvious Flyers bias …I mean that scott guy tries but it’s just not the same.
        Happy new year man.

      • Thanks for that Shticky. Things can turn so quickly. I think one of the things I like less than a sore loser is a classless winner.

    • And you take exception to “Leafs haters” dumping on your favorite team! Ever wonder why they are quick to jump on them when things go bad? And there’s still plenty of time for things to go downhill so why invite the comments?

      As for Laine-Matthews “dispute” – both are very good young players who will be around for a long time. When it comes to this, their rookie seasons, what remains to be see is which best handles the grind of an 82-game schedule after playing in leagues where they play far less in any given season. Only time will tell that story.

      • You know George the sad part of the Calder race is that only one kid will win. I think they should put an asterisk to 2017 and call it 12 way tie. There seems to be that many deserving kids that some one could make a good case for. Sadly it`ll come down to just goals scored. Don`t think there`s every been a year like this one for quantity or the quality of the rookies in the NHL. Probably never happen again.

      • It will happen again. Didn’t you just watch the WJC’s? The # of studs being developed world wide is amazing especially in the US. This is just the tip of the iceberg.

        It’s currently a 3 man; their kust kids really, race. Matthew’s, Laine & Werenski. The voting may never be more divoided. Several others could enter the race over the 2nd 1/2 of the season especially if 1 of these 3 is felled by injury like McDavid was last season.

      • The juniors another affirmation that Canada can’t call hockey “their” game anymore. Kinda like Baseball in US. Best Canada can say is that Hockey is Canadas pasttime.

      • Meh! While not so ignorant as to not acknowledge the accomplishments of other nations, I’m still pretty comfortable calling it ‘our’ game. It’s about a lot more than winning every tournament. There won’t be a national summit to dissect what is wrong with hockey in Canada because of the world jr’s shootout loss. I’m pretty sure we are just fine.

      • Response of Chrisms. Hockey is a great game, Canadians love it and it’s clearly a passion. More than happy to share it but I think “pastime” undersells the level of interest it holds. I still believe it’s Canada’s game but am more than happy to share it with the world.

      • Not your game anymore just like how baseball isn’t us’s game. Hockey is all over the world. Young top talents are less likely to be from Canada. The past two drafts had only 5/20 of the top ten picks come out of Canada. It’s still the biggest thing in Canada but Canada can’t call it its game anymore.

      • Styx. I think the us baseball reference I used is pretty dead on. Baseball is America past time and is as much a part of American life as hockey is in Canada. But. It’s not americas game anymore. It’s huge in Asia and Latin America and many MLB players come from those areas and in increasing numbers. It’s the same for hockey and Canada. The percentage of Canadians in the NHL will likely always be higher than any one other country but it will continue to drop in the years to come

      • I think until some other countries could put a line up together of their best players that can compete with the Crosby McDavid Toews Price… it’s pretty safe to assume it’s a Canadian game. Maybe someday in the near future you may be right Chris and I tend to agree to an extent that it’s becoming less, but for now no matter how you look at it at the highest of levels it’s a sport dominated by Canadians.

      • I think they are getting close schticky to that level . But that’s not my argument. No one can say that Canada still isn’t the dominant nation. But the game has grown so much and talent is coming in increasing ways from outside Canada that sayings it’s Canada’s game is not accurate anymore

      • Maybe not entirely, no I do see what you are getting at with the comparison brtweeen hockey in Canada and baseball in the US I just don’t think it’s quite to that point yet.

      • When you look at all the Canadian coaches and instructors all over the world and take all the tournaments around the world, under 17,World Cup,under 20, Spengler cup, iihf World Cup even the major peewee and bantam tournaments pretty safe to say it’s still Canada’s game

      • Fewer than half the players in the NHL are Canadian, and while it can’t be said that hockey is a sport played and beloved only by Canadians, the flavour of the game remains preeminently Canadian. Those who aspire to play in the world’s best league learn to play on Canadian-sized ice according to rules made and enforced by mostly Canadian officials with the help of a Situation Room in Toronto. According to Wikipedia, of 42 NHL referees, 33 are Canadian, 8 are American. and 1 (Evgeny Romasko) is Russian. Of 37 linesmen, 7 are Americans and the rest Canadian. Judging by the game’s rapidly growing popularity, I would say that, with the help of some Gary Bettman Americanization, the Canadians and a Canadian organizational structure are promoting their game very well

    • I perceive Boston as in year 2 of a rebuild on the fly. Sweeney took over in the April of 2015, a year after Shanahan took over in Toronto. Gone were Hamilton & Lucic. In were a ton of picks & prospects when the dust settled. Those prospects now form 1 of the best group of D prospects in the NHL.

      Last season Spooner was added as a full time NHL player with numerous short term stop gaps, Pastrnak, C. Miller & Vatrano started getting exposure, limited games & minutes. This season Pastrnak, C. Miller, Czarnik & I assume Vatrano are full time NHL players, joined by Carlo.

      I had Boston as I bubble team again this season missing the playoffs. What’s to tear down, Boston is fast adding youth. Backes, Bergeron, Krejci & others are part of the core & will be for many years to come as they help lay the foundation for the kids coming.

      You must have missed the memo. The tear down started when Sweeney was hired 2 years ago, now were just starting to what Sweeney’s plan is. Build from the net out. We’re a year behind Shanahan’s rebuild & not taking the same path. Boston has actually tried to win well rebuilding they didn’t tank it on purpose. They sure tanked, not once but twice but once was before Sweeney took over. Ha-ha!

    • Yes Dan, Boston is going to give all that up for Landeskog….You can ask for the moon doesn’t mean you’ll get it. However Sweeney is under pressure to get something done, personally I think its time to say thanks to CJ for his services and replace him with fresh air. As far as your leafs are concern they are playing well and enjoy it. But curious of why you think Laine is unsustainable but Matthews is. Lastly never refer to BBB as a troll on here again because that title belongs solely to you.

    • Matthews pace is unsustainable let’s be real Laine is the Better player! Lol As far as the bruins they’re doing exactly what I said they were I said the backes was a horrible signing along with liles and Miller. That’s the difference about other team fans and leaf fans we don’t go around saying all our players are amazing and will return the world in trades, be a dynasty for years. Dan39 is gloating about a team that has made the playoffs once in the last decade and besides the habs and lightning both good teams that have a ton of injuries I think the habs have 7 starters out of the lineup for the leafs game tonight? Anyways the Atlantic is the weakest division in the league

      • And this is for non leaf fans Matthews is tweeting out pictures of the American flag by the way leaf fans thought stamkos was coming to Toronto because of his tweets, does this mean Matthews wants to play in his home country? Lol

  3. Good point about Sakic waiting Boston out. He is not in dire need to trade Landeskog as there aint no chance they make the playoffs… if Boston doesnt give them what they want someone will, prior to deadline or in offseason. Make someone pay for the guy or hold onto him. The other deal wasnt terrible though… morrow is almost zero value, but Boston could be a top ten pick and the other two guys are young and fairly promising. I wonder if Boston or COl shone the light on this offer… Col maybe to show competitors what to beat, or boston to say to their fans… Hey, we tried, dont blame us for sucking.

  4. For people who do not watch Hanzal often, they might miss what he does beyond the stat sheet but Hanzal is a very imposing presence on the ice. He plays against the other team’s top lines on a nightly basis and contains the top centers in the league very well. He hits, wins face-offs, defends his team mates, and the younger players all play better on his line then with anyone else. He can be an absolute beast.

    He is capable of much more scoring too but is stifled like the rest of the team under Dave Tippet’s coaching. I think he would do a lot to make a play-off team a contender.

    But his downfall is his injury history and that is a huge consideration. He is often playing hurt, on injured reserve, or coming back from injury trying yo regain his form.

    When healthy, he is a great player but whoever might trade for him is really rolling the dice because of this. If he could stay healthy, he would never be available for a trade.

    • I agree Hanzal is a good top 6 forward when healthy. He is one of those players that can play any kind of game you want to play. Hanzal will be an affordable true rental. The risk is that he remains healthy for the last third of the season and playoffs. Being a UFA at season end and not needing to be protected in the expansion draft will work in his and Arizona’s favor. I would not be surprised if he is traded right after the star break.

  5. I was reading Jamie Oleksiak( sorry for Spelling) may be the odd man out in Dallas who has a abundance of dmen.So could he be someone the Leafs could target. I know nothing about him other then he’s Penny’s brother and he’s 6’6″ left shot, so asking for opinions.

  6. Why on Earth didn’t the Avs just draft Seth Jones?

    “You always take the best player available.”

    That worked out really well for them, huh?

    If you have 3 beach houses and no car, you might want to get a car before your 4th beach house.

    The Avs were stacked with young centers and desperately needed D.

    Why not just keep Duchene, O’Reilly and (possibly) Stastny? They’d have had Jones, Erik Johnson and Tyson Barrie as their right side D. How good would that team be?

    • Or if you’re going to lose a centre as a UFA anyway (Stastny) and determined you are “rebuilding” your team with youth and draft picks why not trade him for a young D prospect and a draft pick at that point you could possibly have Johnson Barrie Zardov as well as at least 1 possibly 2 up and coming D….but hey Joe is doing an excellent job of drilling the Avs right in to the basement.

      • We have no idea who was making these player personal decisions in Colorado between Sakic & Roy or even Sherman in Sakic & Roy’s 1st seasons as he retained the GM title until the following season. If they were on the same page, obviously they weren’t as Roy packed up his toys & quit.

        There is no question who’s driving that bus now but until Sakic has been in place for at least 5 years we can’t fairly judge his performance. Factor in the unconventional 2 headed monster created longer may be needed to judge Sakic not that Roy is history.

        We’re going to find out in the next few seasons as Colorado’s prospects enter the system.

        Did Sakic refuse to sign your hockey card as a child? Pee on your shoe that day in the bar? This distaste you have for him, Yzerman & others is some what alarming. Ha-ha!

      • May 11th 2013, Joe Sakic was hired with full control of all hockey operations. This according to the Colorado ownership, from that date Sakic had final say on all trades, signings, drafts and players being released. This is Joe`s mess, even if he didn`t do it, he went along with it.

      • That’s kinda the thing isn’t it Yogi Striker is quick to copy a paste the Wiki article that says Sakic was first hired as an advisor to hockey ops in 2011 (so one would think he was being paid to advise the hockey
        team as to what he thought would make them better) and Striker then moves the target to well he wasn’t actually GM until 2013 then when you point to the mistakes made after 2013 it’s well that was all Roy…lol Sakic has been being paid by the Avalanche for nearly 5 years and for the past 3 they have been going backwards and none of it’s ever Sakics fault? But ya it’s because Sakic didn’t sign my hockey card that I think the last place team in the league is a mess.

      • Wikipedia.

        “On May 23, 2013, Roy was named head coach and vice president of hockey operations of the Colorado Avalanche.[34] TSN’s Bob McKenzie reported that Roy will have the final say in all hockey matters. Then-Avalanche General Manager Greg Sherman retained his post, but was considered the general manager “in name only.”[35] At the time, Roy was the only coach in the NHL who has the title or powers of general manager. Before the season started, his former Avs teammate, Joe Sakic, was hired as executive vice president of hockey operations. Although the title nominally put him above Roy on the organization chart, Roy and Sakic shared most of the duties normally held by a general manager in the NHL–a practice that continued after Sakic was formally granted the title of general manager in 2014.”

      • But worry not about the Avalanche fine citizens! Help is on the way from what the majority of any scouting material you will ever read considers one of the bottom 5 prospect pools in the NHL. Yay Joe!

      • Some how on this one I`m going with the owners of the hockey team over Wikipedia. If the owners don`t know when they hired Sakic and what they pay him for then the problem is far worse than anyone could imagine.

      • Let’s be honest the 3 of you are all googling crap and have NO idea what goes on behind closed doors!

    • It’s not that cut & dry. Mckinnon was the consensus 1st overall pick on every scouting bureau report. Neither Stastny nor O’Reilly were going to be able to be retained the season following McKinnon being drafted. Their contract demands exceeded what Colorado was willing to pay & the bad blood contract negotiations created before O’Reilly signed an offer sheet with Calgary set the stage for his being moved as that 2 year deal set to expire. Colorado went right to the end of that deal before accepting he couldn’t be retained & it wasn’t just about money.

      Had Colorado not had that surprisingly great season; finished 1st in the Central, 2nd in the west & 3 in the entire NHL, Stastny would have been moved at the deadline but they did & like most teams confronted with those situations they retained the player watching him walk as a UFA.

      Is Jones more valuable than McKinnon? Given a choice of McKinnon or Johansen the player Jones was moved for I take McKinnon. Having the benefit of hindsight & being old school, given a choice of all 3 players I take Jones as I would build from the net out.

  7. Let’s see if Hanzal is healthy at the trade dead line. Good piece in a deal but the not the centre piece…adding Duclair would help. I think Duchene needs to move and not Landeskog who is way tougher to play against.

  8. The Bruins come out flat and fall behind on a regular bases, that falls on the coach imo, I know they are grown adults and should be ready to play but they are not, need a different voice in the room before any trades are made. The other big issue is they only have one win by their backup goaltenders this is a recipe for disaster. backups are 1-8-1 hopefully Zane strong play on the farm can translate to some success in the NHL. Do not want to see Boston trade away any of their D prospects until they establish what they got.

    • Agree 100% that the b’s should wait before making a trade.
      Also think they should hang on to CJ though. The guy hasn’t lost the room and has the respect of every player in the NHL. But that is likely what happens first.
      Landeskog or anyone else that is available will move the needle enough.
      I think they will get in, but it will be tight. DO NOT sell the farm.
      I do not envy the situation Sweeney is in with ownership having unrealistic expectations for this year.

      • Will not move the needle

      • I think Jacobs comments about the playoffs are what any owner basically states. Essentially rhetoric. Most owners come out a spout this kind of stuff not the least of which is Melnyk. Same BS every year followed by little to nothing.

  9. Bbb are you nuts? Laine is on a line that is being driven by Schiefle, who has finally come into his own and proven himself a no. 1 C. Without him, Laine wouldn’t be where he is; he’s a finisher, and a damn good one. But he doesn’t create the play or the drive. He’s also a turnover machine when he tries to drive the play.
    Let each player play to their strengths, but don’t think for a second that Laine has reached his point totals on his own. If thr Leafs had drafted him, we’d all be complaining that they just got a younger Kessel in the draft. Matthews has reached his totals playing with Hyman and Brown (outside of hardcore fans of the game, people would be asking “who are they?”) who also happen to be rookies as well. So in the end its an apples to oranges comparison of 2 young kids that play a very different style of hockey.

  10. If Colorado wants Carlo maybe a bigger deal can be made.
    Landeskog and the first rounder
    Carlo,Morrow,Spooner, first rounder
    I still think Boston will miss playoffs and best think to do this season is tank and fire Claude.

    • Not a chance the avs give up that pick!

    • No chance as it will likely be a top 5 pick. And dumping spooner and Morrow who have low value… avs wait out teams for the right deal or wait till offseason after expansion. Ana might really want to look into. A Theodore or montour could be a starting point.

  11. I find the whole Laine vs Mathews debate somewhat amusing. Both excellent but different animals. Which is better depends on what your team needs. What will be interesting for me is to see how they respond when the league adapts to them.

    A lot of very good players have started out incredibly well and then had their production decline significantly once other teams and players got used to them. Health will also play a significant role for both of these players as teams start to pay more attention.

    The one thing I am sick of is all of the hype that surrounds Mathews. At least it’s caused some of the McDavid hype to decline a bit. When the media starts saying he’s a top 25 player in the league right now I really have to shake my head.

    • Shake your head at what exactly? He is currently tied for 2nd in goals and 15th in points. So technically he is currently in the top 15…if he continues at his current pace will likely end up in the top by the end of the season. 70pts is no longer an unrealistic goal for Matthews and he may continue to elevate his game as the season progresses… I’m afraid if you are shaking your head its more in disbelief about how wrong you actually are. He isn’t Crosby or McDavid, but given another year or two, he could be another Messier or Lindros.

      • top 10…typo there…

      • ahh your one of those leaf medic 🙂 One of those folks that only counts points as a measure of someone’s level of play. Of course that means that some guys are better in one year than they are in another. If also doesn’t take their situation into account at all.

        Your logic would suggest Mathews is better than Tavares, Doughty, Price, Shea Weber, Stamkos, Toews, Malkin… For a player to be top 25 they’d need to be better than any player on at least 5 other teams. There are several teams with at least two or three players better than Mathews right now and a bunch with guys every bit as good. He’s a very good rookie, that’s great. He’ll get even better, so there’s that. There’s no way he’s top 25 in the league right now.

        Course I’m fine with the Leafs and their fans disagreeing. It’s the same mind set that got Phaneuf his massively inflated contract. Go ahead and over value all of them, the cap will sort it all out.

      • Well said Styx

    • i get your drift but there really isnt much to debate after his first game, especially the goal he deked the entire team to score

      • I do t think you watch Matthews play. He plays the entire ice and on top puts the luck in okay to score. Top 25 no doubt in my mind

  12. Pretty good Chance that the Av’s will be in the No 1 or No 2 slot and will not be giving that away. Maybe their second round which is also like a late first in a quicker draft.

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