Tag: NHL Trade Rumors

Winnipeg Jets Lose 7-1 To Colorado… Is The Case For Matt Duchene Becoming Stronger?

The Winnipeg Jets got beat up pretty badly Wednesday night vs Colorado. The first period went pretty smoothly, both teams exchanged some chances the Avalanche definitely out-chanced and out played the Jets in the first but from their on it was all Avalanche.

The Avalanche played a very quick transition game, worked well down low and all four lines were clicking. The recipe to beat the Jets seems to be a quicker game than they play, don’t allow them to get second chances, move the puck up the ice quickly and score the first goal. The Jets have been in a little bit of a rut. The Jets still sit a top the Central division, separating themselves from Nashville by one point and St. Louis by six points. The Jets though in nine February games have lost six of their eight games, two coming in overtime therefore they pick up two points and have only won four of their eight games.

The concern is not about the Jets ability to make playoffs obviously it seems the concern is their ability to get into the playoffs and make a run. The Jets were bounced in the Conference Finals last season vs the Golden Knights. Their window seems to be getting smaller as the years go and some their back end ages, are free agents at the end of the season or the concern of cap issues. The Jets have scored 12 goals in their last five games (2.4 goals per game), have allowed 19 goals in those five games (3.8 goals per game). Something we usually never see from Winnipeg is a lack of offense and a poor defensive game.

Granted the Jets are missing a few pieces on their back end right now with Dustin Byfuglien being out and Joe Morrow as well but their defensive issues from last night’s game seem to be from their front end as well. They back checked terribly and in front their own net their defenseman and centers were puck watching a lot. As well it does not help that Nikolaj Ehlers is out still and Patrik Laine is on a 15-game goal-less drought and two goals in his last 28 games but Mark Scheifele, Blake Wheeler and Kyle Connor have a combined 5 goals and 6 assists in their last five games. Wheeler and Scheifele are both point less in their last three game.

Here are some glaring mistakes from the Jets 7-1 loss to Colorado Wednesday night. I’d like to make aware of how Patrik Laine being scoreless in 15-games straight shows zero effort in this back check that leads to a Colorado goal. And Mark Schefiele seems to be not hustling back either on the 2-vs-1 goal as well as the terrible in front of net coverage on the final goal. Two guys can’t tie up one guy to keep him from scoring.

With the Jets loss to Colorado and lack of offense in their last five games and 45 goals in their last 15 games, and now if we take out the 9 goals they score vs Anaheim, their 36 goals in 14 games and 2.5 goals for over that span is a glaring issue. With that said, are the Jets heavy favorites and or considering Matt Duchene even more now? Their offense seems to be struggling. Even in that 7-1 loss to Colorado they got outshot 46-27 another issue. The Jets have been outshot numerous times now over the last week plus. They were outshot 41-28 vs Ottawa, outshot 35-26 vs Colorado (Feb. 14), outshot 37-36 vs Rangers (Feb. 12), outshot 26-29 vs Buffalo (Feb.10) there seems to be some issues on the offensive side of things for Winnipeg and it only makes sense that will be heavy favorites for Duchene amongst these issues.

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NHL Trade Deadline: Conversations About Matt Duchene’s And Michael Ferland’s Future

The trade deadline is about a week away and there has really not been much buzz about what players are going to be moved. We heard so much about certain players like Mats Zuccarello, Kevin Hayes, Dougie Hamilton, Justin Faulk, etc. But, as we hit the one-week mark it seems a lot has gone radio silence. Well, silence for us, the fans.

Anyways, the biggest player we have had our eye on all season is Matt Duchene. What is his future in Ottawa and what is he going to do. Well, after monitoring the situation, reading up on the player and his agent and more information. It seems Duchene is almost a lock to be moved at the trade deadline. It is unlikely he will sign with Ottawa but it is also not out of question it juts seems as if a trade is more likely.

Where can Duchene land? Well, that is unknown. There are a few teams who can add him as a rental player or a team that can add him and sign him for a long term extension if moved. Duchene could be moved to Winnipeg or Columbus but if he is moved to one of these two teams he will probably test the free agency market come July 2019. Deeming Duchene a rental for these two teams due to Winnipeg’s cap space and Columbus’s uncertainty with Bobrovsky and Artemi Panarin. If he is moved to a Nashville, Islanders, Panthers or Vegas team they can be a team that signs him for a longer extension if he is moved there.

The Islanders have around 10 million in cap space and have a few RFA’s to re-sign and it would be a very tight squeeze to add Duchene, but that is not to say this is not a possible landing spot. Vegas has the same situation but a lot less in cap space but also a lot of RFA and UFA’s on the move that they can option to not re-sign and free up space. Panthers make for an interesting situation due to their very little cap space but 3-4 players worth 2.5 million or more on the move it can be a possibility. Nashville is a probable destination for Duchene due to their contention spot right now, their window seems to be closing more and more each year so they could be looking to make a push. Either way the Senators and Duchene seem to be on the agreement to part ways and explore Duchene’s future elsewhere.

Michael Ferland Trade Rumors
Michael Ferland continues to help Hurricanes make playoff push as trade deadline nears.

Michael Ferland is an interesting case, he was rumored to be on the block for the Hurricanes about two-weeks ago, but now as the Canes are making a little playoff push and are one point out of contention they may have pulled the brakes on this move. It is not to say that the Canes are not willing to still move Ferland but it seems a lot of talks have slowed down.

As of now we are excepting Ferland to test the free agency market come July 2019 and it seems that is what he wants to do as well. Ferland is coming off a $1.75 million cap hit right now he has 33 points in 50 games (16G, 17A) on pace for back to back 40+ point seasons. Ferland will probably be looking at a 3-4 year contract extension around the 4.5 million AAV value, possibly more.  Which if so the Hurricanes may be able to afford once they come to agreement with Sebastian Aho and Brock McGinn, therefore Ferland even though he is going to test the market could end up back in Carolina.

New Jersey Devils F Marcus Johansson Is A Name To Watch At The Trade Deadline

It has been a bit of a rough stretch in New Jersey for the once hopeful and highly sought out forward. But Johansson played just 29 games last season due to injuries and has missed 12 games this season. Johansson spent 6.5 years in Washington where he recorded five 40+ point seasons and never really lived up to that expectation in New Jersey. Now as the Devils go from a playoff team to a re-tooling situation, Johansson is one of those players that has not been spoken about much this trade deadline. He is a UFA (unrestricted free agent) at the end of this year, on a 4.8 million dollar deal and probably will not get much more than that due to his lack of production/presence in New Jersey. Plus he is 28-years-old and definitely a player that can be very valuable on a contending playoff team.

Although the price for Johansson may not be as much as Ray Shero and Devils fans except they can still receive a 2nd round pick and prospect for Johansson, or possibly a borderline top-four defenseman and pick. The price will vary depending on how desperate a team is.

Johansson is showing his worth more now as he continues to stay healthy and produce. In his last 11 games he has 5 goals and 5 assists, and in his last 25 games he has 8 goals and 9 assists. Johansson has 25 points in 46 games (11G, 14A, 9PPP, 94 SOG). He is not a name we have heard thrown around much but Ray Shero is at a cross road, re-sign the unpredictable and injury prone forward or trade him to a contending team to at least get something in return. I would have to guess if Johansson does not get traded this deadline he will not re-sign in New Jersey. Shero is not the type of GM to wait until the last second to make a deal either. I would not be surprised to see Johansson’s name thrown around more so over the next 3-4 days.

NHL Trade Rumors: Panthers Interested In Blue Jackets Goalie Sergei Bobrovsky

This news has been circulating the hockey sphere for about two days or so now, it was mainly from smaller media sites but Larry Brooks has confirmed that this is in fact true and the Florida Panthers are talking to the Blue Jackets about goaltender Sergei Bobrovsky.

What could this deal look like? 

The Panthers are rumored to be interested in moving James Reimer and Derick Brassard, but it will take a little more than that. If the Panthers do move these two players they will probably add a 2nd-3rd round pick or a high-end prospect as well.

Also, the Panthers are interested in signing Bobrovsky to an extension, 8-years supposedly. With that, at 30-years-old Bobrovsky would be signed until he is thirty-eight. If they do sign Bobrovsky to a long term deal and get rid of Brassard and Reimer it does free up 7.4 million in cap space and they would probably pay Bobrovsky around 8-8.5 million a year.

Bobrovsky is 19-16-1 with a 3.01 goals against (GAA), .901 save percentage (SV %) and two shutouts. In his career his numbers are 237-145-37 with a 2.49 GAA, .918 SV % and 26 shutouts.

If this trade does occur and the Blue Jackets do trade Bobrovsky. This gives current back up goalie Joonas Korpisalo a look to be their number one for now and possibly the future. Korpisalo has a 9-4-2 record, 2.96 GAA, .901 SV % on the year.

What this also means is that the Blue Jackets do not need to worry about signing Bobrovsky, and they can throw all their chips and more at Artemi Panarin in the off-season. If this move does occur it allows the Blue Jackets to feel more confident in Panarin returning for next year.

Top Sellers And Their Current Needs Heading Into The Trade Deadline

The trade deadline seems like it is so far away but in the blink of an eye it will be February 25th, therefore around this time, within the next two weeks we could see a flurry of moves. Always at the deadline there are three types of teams, sellers, buyers and teams staying put. Here are my top five sellers at the deadline and their current needs.

1. New York Rangers:

Clear as day this team is selling, they are probably performing a little above expectations but the team knows they have no intentions on winning right now nor in the next year or two. Therefore most of their roster/players that are ending or nearing the end of their contracts are on the move. For example, Mats Zuccarello is one of the many names on the list that will/is probably going to be moved. Adam McQuaid is on that list, Kevin Hayes, Vladislav Namestikov, and I believe Pavel Buchnevich should but have not heard much about him. The Rangers are going to be selling Zuccarello for sure, McQuaid more than likely, Hayes is 50/50 and same with Namestikov.

What could they use in return? The Rangers want prospects, high-end, projected top-three to six forward players. They could also use some draft picks, maybe another first rounder down the road, a first round this year, and definitely a second round pick. Essentially they want a top-three draft pick.

2. Carolina Hurricanes:

This comes of shock to me as well but the Hurricanes seem like they are in the boat to sell. They are in the market for some young prospects right now and I would say the Hurricanes want to sell because they usually are a team that comes in under the cap space and right now they have to worry about Dougie Hamilton, Justin Faulk and signing Sebastian Aho to a long term contract. Therefore they are looking to sell to do so. The Hurricanes are currently looking to trade Michael Ferland, Dougie Hamilton, Justin Faulk.

What could they use in return? The Hurricanes like forwards, young forwards, players like a Brock McGinn seems to be the Carolina fit. They said they do not want much defenseman actually and they would rather lose 5-4 then lose 2-1. Therefore the Hurricanes want top-two draft picks and high end forward prospects.

3. Detroit Red Wings:

Not big sellers but they are trying to get rid of, should not say get rid of but trade Gustav Nyquist and Jimmy Howard. The Red Wings know they cannot win right now nor next year they have full intentions and sights set on the future and with their current roster make up being a bunch of young up and coming players, it only makes sense to go after draft picks.

What could they use in return? The Red Wings do a helluva a job drafting, give this team two first round picks and they will find some gems. They got a steal in Filip Zadina last draft and would like to have some more draft picks this year. They have said the asking price for Howard and Nyquist are first round picks.

4. Florida Panthers:

The Panthers actually just made three call ups and placed Jamie McGinn on their non-roster. The Panthers are not what we expected this year they have got the goaltending, some inconsistent play and a slow start hurt this team.  Even with Mike Hoffman projected for 40 goals, Yandle having a Norris season and Barkov playing well they still are not in the playoff hunt. The Panthers wanted to be a playoff team this year but like we said things did not go their way and they are essentially just one piece away from being a playoff contending team. That piece is a goaltender. The Panthers could look to sell Mark Pysyk and Nick Bjugstad.

What could they use in return? A legitimate starting goaltender, top-six winger and second or third round draft pick. Could be a Jimmy Howard, Casey DeSmith situation for them but we have not heard much from the Panthers, just speculations.

5. Ottawa Senators:

The Senators have such a difficult off-season ahead of them in terms of contract renewals, they need to sign back Matt Duchene, Mark Stone, Cody Ceci and Ryan Dzingel probably only 2/4 or 3/4 players can come back therefore they are going to be selling one or two of these four names. If I had to guess after what has come out about Duchene and his agent, he could be gone and due to Ceci’s value he could be gone as well.

What could they use in return? Endless top draft picks never hurts, top-three/six forward and top-three/four defenseman prospects. You can easily get a first round, second and top-six prospect forward for Duchene and a 2nd round, bottom-six forward prospect for Ceci.

Where Artemi Panarin, Wayne Simmonds, Derick Brassard, Mats Zuccarello May Land

These four names plus two to three others have been the most actively spoken about names. Essentially these four are destined to be moved before the trade deadline. With the news that came about Artemi Panarin and how he does not want to talk about his contract until the after the season. The Blue Jackets are probably going to move him. The Flyers and Rangers are out of the playoff hunt and it would make zero sense for either team to sign these players, Brassard has been in hot water in Pittsburgh for nearly two months now.

Artemi Panarin

What it will take to acquire Panarin: the kitchen sink, who is willing to throw that at Columbus. Winnipeg, Bruins, Pittsburgh. In all seriousness where Panarin will end up is so unknown, it will require a first round pick, a high level draft prospect, a top six forward, or maybe high-end prospect, 1st round pick plus a 2nd or 3rd round pick for Panarin.

Landing spots for Panarin: Boston, Columbus, Pittsburgh, Winnipeg, Islanders, Rangers.

Wayne Simmonds

What it will take acquire Simmonds: Simmonds is not too expensive depending on the team. For example Simmonds would probably cost a 2nd round pick, mid-level prospect or a 1st round pick and low-end prospect, or a 2nd to 3rd round pick and bottom/top six forward/ a top-four/five defenseman.

Landing spots for Simmonds: Boston, Pittsburgh, Montreal, Winnipeg, Nashville, Dallas, Colorado, Edmonton.

Derick Brassard

What it will take to acquire Brassard: Easily the cheapest of the four names. Brassard may cost a 3rd round pick, maybe a 2nd if a team is desperate. He can even go for borderline number four/five defenseman.

Landing spots for Brassard: Winnipeg, Nashville, Montreal, Islanders, Edmonton, Dallas, Colorado

Mats Zuccarello

What it will cost to acquire Zuccarello: A 2nd round pick, mid-level prospect. A 3rd round pick, high-end prospect, 1st round pick that’s all though, 2nd, 3rd round pick.

Landing spots for Zuccarello: Winnipeg, Pittsburgh, Nashville, Edmonton, Columbus, Dallas, Colorado

Jake Muzzin Is A Piece Of The Puzzle In Toronto But Not The Whole Puzzle

The trade we have all been waiting for occurred Monday night around 6:00 PM (EST). Jake Muzzin was sent to the Toronto Maple Leafs for a 2019 1st round pick, Sean Durzi and Carl Gundstrom. The Leafs have been fishing for another top four defenseman for nearly two years. With this addition of Muzzin it allows the Leafs to play Morgan Reilly-Jake Muzzin, Jake Gardiner-Nikita Zaitsev with a third pair of Travis Dermott-Ron Hainsey. Which makes this Leafs team a deeper team on the back end.

More so looking at the trade, the headline makes it seem like Muzzin is not a good addition, by no means should it come off like that. Anytime you add a Stanley Cup winner, a veteran defenseman and someone to pair with Reilly on a consistent basis is always a plus.

Muzzin is a piece to the puzzle not the whole puzzle, hear me out…

What I mean by Muzzin is not the answer. The Leafs are shaping up to play the Canadiens or Bruins. Now if the Bruins end up being the #3 seed and the Leafs stay at #2 it will be the Leafs worst nightmare, in the past decade it seems the Bruins have had the Leafs number, therefore reason one Muzzin is not the answer is because, well will he propel the Leafs over the Bruins? Probably not, so he does not make a huge difference in that regard.

Reason number two Muzzin may not be the complete answer. My concerns about Frederick Anderson still loom, and I am talking playoff Anderson. In years past and hinting on last year Anderson posted a 3.76 goals against (GAA) in 7 games, .896 save percentage and allowed 23 goals on 198 shots. The previous year Anderson posted a 2.68 goals against in six games, the second year he was in Anaheim he posted a 2.34 GAA in 16 games started after a 3.10 GAA in 7 games started the year before. My point is what Anderson will show up in the playoffs this time around? Yes, getting Muzzin does help on the back end but the goalie still needs to stop the puck.

Concern number three with the Leafs is their very young roster of players coming to play in the playoffs, they have Nazem Kadri, John Tavares, Patrick Marleau and Ron Hainsey with playoff experience but Auston Matthews, Mitch Marner, Kasperi Kapanen and William Nylander have little playoff experience and I know some people say that means nothing but playoffs is a different game. Getting a team like the Bruins, a team that is young but has so many very well seasoned players and a different team when it comes to the playoffs is no easy feat for the Leafs. If the Leafs get the Canadiens than I would feel more confident in their chances of winning.

Can Muzzin be what Shattenkirk was to Washington two years ago?

I believe Jake Muzzin adds a great dimension to the Leafs defense, it allows Morgan Reilly to play more of an offensive game, it allows Jake Gardiner to play more of an offensive game. Therefore it gives these two offensive minded d-men to go out and play their game. It gives Travis Dermott the experience of playing with a veteran like Ron Hainsey. But the Leafs offense still needs to produce. If the Leafs cannot find a way for William Nylander, Kasperi Kapanen, Nazem Kadri to be CONSISTENT than adding Muzzin does not make them automatic cup contenders. The Leafs need to find a way for these young forwards to get into a groove from now throughout the playoffs. If the Leafs cannot get their top-six to be a consistent top-six then they will not be automatic cup winners. Therefore that is why I don’t think Muzzin solves the problem, he is a piece of the puzzle. Look at what happened in Washington two years ago when they added Kevin Shattenkirk to the mix the Capitals needed a offensive-defenseman and they added that but still got bounced early in the playoffs, one player does not make or break a team, they help but the other 17 guys in the line up need to show up too.