NHL Rumors: Oilers, Canadiens, Canucks, Flames, Capitals

In today’s NHL rumors rundown, it was a big few hours for coaching changes in the NHL. The Montreal Canadiens moved from Dominique Ducharme and the Edmonton Oilers fired Dave Tippett. What’s next for these two teams and what is the plan moving forward? Meanwhile, the Vancouver Canucks have been busy taking trade calls and the Calgary Flames are interested in Tyler Toffoli. Finally, the Washington Capitals did try to acquire Marc-Andre Fleury, but things didn’t go according to plan.

Oilers Fire Tippett, More Moves Coming?

With the removal of Tippett and Jim Playfair as coaches in Edmonton and the hiring of Jay Woodcroft and Dave Manson from Bakersfield, there’s a sense some other big changes are coming to the Oilers. It will start with players from the Condors getting a much closer look, and it also might include GM Ken Holland working hard to find players before the trade deadline that can help.

Dave Tippett Seattle
FILE – Arizona Coyotes head coach Dave Tippett (AP Photo/LM Otero, file)

Firing Tippett was a decision Holland felt like he had to make. With two losing streaks in close proximity to one another, it seemed clear that a change was needed. All that said, there’s also a sense that Holland could be on the hot seat if he doesn’t do more to turn things around for the Oilers. Tippett should get some of the blame here but there’s a sense in Edmonton that Holland didn’t build a team that had the right mix of forwards, defense, and goaltending. That he didn’t upgrade his goalies for two straight seasons has the GM potentially on the hot seat as well.

Related: Edmonton Oilers Fire Dave Tippett, Hire Jay Woodcroft as Coach

It has been rumored the Oilers are looking for a left-shot defenseman and an upgrade in goal. Holland said he wasn’t willing to move a first-round pick to acquire either, but one has to think with his job potentially on the line, things have changed.

St. Louis Looking to Stick Around in Montreal

After the Canadiens fired Dominque Ducharme and hired Martin St. Louis, there was some thought that Habs were only doing this as a temporary fix until the Canadiens could undergo an extensive coaching search in the offseason. That might not necessarily be the case.

Martin St. Louis 2018 Hockey Hall Of Fame
Martin St. Louis takes part in a press conference and photo opportunity at the Great Hall in the Hockey Hall Of Fame on November 09, 2018 in Toronto, Ontario, Canada. (Photo by Bruce Bennett/Getty Images)

New GM Kent Hughes has confirmed the team will not rule out keeping St. Louis if things go well over the remainder of the season and St. Louis himself said at his media avail on Thursday morning, “I’m not coming here to be a substitute teacher…I have every intention of being here a long time, but I’ll have to prove myself again and earn it.” The former NHL player who is coming in straight from coaching youth hockey added, “I know I have no experience behind the bench, but I have a lot of it on the bench, on the ice and in the room.”

Canucks’ Allvin Already Taking Trade Calls

As per Thomas Drance of The Athletic, new Canucks’ GM Patrik Allvin isn’t wasting any time taking calls on some of his players. Drance writes, “Within the industry, the Canucks are seen as a team to watch on the trade front.” He adds, “That’s in part because of Rutherford’s reputation, and, in part, because the club is seen as a motivated seller.”

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Names like J.T. Miller and Conor Garland are out there. You can add Brock Boeser’s name to the mix as well. Drance adds:

Name a Canucks forward earning more than $2 million in salary who isn’t Bo Horvat and Elias Pettersson, and you can bet that there’s an NHL hockey operations department somewhere in North America that has discussed the fit at length and gauged their price with Canucks leadership too.

source – ‘Canucks to chart future in key meetings this week, Jaroslav Halak’s bonus and Jim Rutherford talks trade rumours’ – Thomas Drance – The Athletic – 02/07/2022

Flames Interested in Toffoli and/or Dvorak?

As per Elliotte Friedman, the Calgary Flames might be kicking tires on the availability of either Tyler Toffoli or Christian Dvorak out of Montreal. Friedman noted while on the Jeff Marek show that “a lot of people” think Toffoli could end up in Calgary by the time the trade deadline comes and goes.

Tyler Toffoli Montreal Canadiens
Tyler Toffoli, Montreal Canadiens (Photo by Curtis Comeau/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images)

The Flames are rumored to be buyers this season and speculation is that they are looking for secondary scoring. Toffoli has played for head coach Darryl Sutter in the past, and he could fit in nicely. The asking price will be high, potentially costing the Flames a first-round pick.

Capitals Failed to Acquire Fleury

According to Daily Faceoff’s Frank Seravalli, the Washington Capitals fell short in their attempts to land Marc-Andre Fleury from the Chicago Blackhawks. Seravalli writes, “They put on the full-court press for Marc-Andre Fleury, but it doesn’t seem like that’s going to happen.”