In today’s NHL rumor rundown, there are questions about who the Anaheim Ducks might trade away this offseason, are the Calgary Flames looking at moving Johnny Gaudreau, what are the Edmonton Oilers, Los Angeles Kings and other Western Conference teams doing, and is Mikko Koivu ready to walk away from the Minnesota Wild?
Ducks To Move a Few Players?
Sportsnet’s Ryan Dixon took a look at some Western Conference teams and wondered if the rebuilding Anaheim Ducks might shop a defenseman like Josh Manson or Cam Fowler. Both have modified no-trade lists, Manson has a 12-team no-trade list, while Fowler has a four-team trade list.
Dixon said Manson’s name, “churned pretty heavily through trade talk leading up to the deadline in February, but any move involving Manson was always more likely to happen in the summer.” It will be interesting to see if he’s a focus for some teams this summer.
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What Will The Flames Do?
Dixon also took a look at the chances of the Calgary Flames shopping Johnny Gaudreau, He notes, “If Calgary puts him on the market, something tasty would be coming back to Southern Alberta.”
Dixon states that Sean Monahan has left people wanting, too, but because he’s a big centre he’s probably safe. This isn’t the first time Gaudreau’s name has been mentioned in trade rumors and if he were made available, surely a team would be interested.
Other Western Conference Notes
Dixon believes the Colorado Avalanche might be a good fit for Taylor Hall and he thinks the Chicago Blackhawks will be looking for goaltenders. As far as the Edmonton Oilers are concerned, Dixon wonders what Ryan Nugent-Hopkins will cost on an extension and believes the Oilers may let Mike Smith walk. The Dallas Stars will look for young forwards and the Los Angeles Kings may try to trade Dustin Brown or Jeff Carter.
Bill Peters Hired in KHL
Avtomobilist in the KHL has hired former Calgary Flames and Carolina Hurricanes coach Bill Peters. The team announced a two-year deal for the coach who was released earlier this season after it went public there were incidences in the past with former NHL’er Akim Aliu, back when Peters was head coach of the Rockford IceHogs in the 2009-10 season.
Mikko Koivu to Leave Minnesota Wild?
According to a report from Minnesota Wild insider Michael Russo of The Athletic, Wild captain Mikko Koivu is ready to walk away from his team in free agency and return to Finland to finish out his hockey career.
Russo adds that Koivu says he doesn’t have a “clear answer” as to what he’ll do and where his future will be but that “he’d be lying if he hadn’t thought that this could be the way his NHL career ends.” Apparently, while some days he believes the NHL season will resume, other days he’s not too sure.
Koivu is finishing the last of a two year, $11 million contract and there are serious questions about what the salary cap might look like next season. As a veteran, he may be one of those players teams can’t afford to give too much money to. Still, he’s highly respected in Minnesota and holds a number of franchise records including games played (1028), assists (504) and points (709).
Can The Jets Re-Tool Their Blue Line?
There is buzz the Winnipeg Jets will try to completely rebuild their blue line this offseason after losing Jacob Trouba, Tyler Myers, Ben Chiarot and — likely — Dustin Byfuglien.
Noting Neal Pionk was a great piece coming back in the Trouba trade and 2019 first-rounder Ville Heinola will probably be a regular next year, what else can the Jets do? Dixon believes it’s time to pull the trigger on a move that sees a forward leave town for a defenceman.
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Jim Parsons is a freelance writer who covers the Edmonton Oilers and news and rumors posts here at The Hockey Writers.
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