NHL Rumors: Avalanche, Flames, Canadiens, Canucks, Rangers, Blues

In today’s NHL rumors rundown, it appears the Calgary Flames have traded for Tyler Toffoli of the Montreal Canadiens. What’s happening with the rest of the Habs’ big-name potential trade pieces? Meanwhile, the Colorado Avalanche would like to get Nathan MacKinnon extended to a new contract and plan to do so as soon as they are allowed. The St. Louis Blues are being cautious with their approach to the NHL Trade Deadline and the Vancouver Canucks and New York Rangers might be working on something.

Avalanche Looking to Extend MacKinnon At First Opportunity

Peter Baugh of The Athletic tweeted that the Colorado Avalanche are looking to get MacKinnon signed to an extension this summer. They have to wait until then because they are not allowed to talk contract extension at this point. That said, GM Joe Sakic said the first day they are allowed to talk, he’ll reach out. Sakic added, “We’ve been looking at that for 3 years.”

Nathan MacKinnon Colorado Avalanche
Nathan MacKinnon, Colorado Avalanche (Amy Irvin / The Hockey Writers)

MacKinnon has been out since January 26 with a concussion and a facial fracture. He returned to the Avalanche’s top line Sunday, playing 17:45. “I felt great. Better than I thought I would. Had some good legs. Thought our whole team played really well,” he said about his return.

Update on Multiple Canadiens’ Trade Pieces

According to SPORTSNET’s Eric Engels (courtesy of a report from Brian Wilde), despite his minor injury, there are 12 teams showing interest in Canadiens defenseman Ben Chiarot. The asking price is said to be “at least a first”, which is not surprising if the demand for the player is that high.

Related: Maple Leafs News & Rumors: Kase, Matthews, Sandin & Spezza

He also updated the status of Tyler Toffoli, Jeff Petry and Josh Anderson. The Canadiens are going to be patient with Toffoli (turns out they got a pretty nice return) and would only move him if they get a big offer (which they did). Montreal is ready to move Petry but won’t give him away — Dallas and Detroit are said to be interested — and Anderson is unlikely to be moved as the ask for him in trade is extremely high.

Calgary Flames Land Toffoli

** Update: Calgary Flames have traded for Tyler Toffoli. According to sources, and first reported by Darren Dreger, the Flames have moved a first-round pick, a fifth-round pick and Tyler Pitlick to Montreal for Toffoli.

It winds up being a first-round pick, a fifth-round pick, Emil Heineman and Tyler Pitlick, according to Sportsnet’s Elliotte Friedman.

Canucks and Rangers Working on Something?

Thomas Drance and Rick Dhaliwal of The Athletic are reporting: “An intriguing name that we keep hearing linked to the Canucks as a player they regard highly is New York Rangers prospect Vitali Kravtsov.” They add that there are plenty of rumors connecting the Canucks to the New York Rangers in trade talks because of New York’s high interest level in J.T. Miller.

The scribes add:

Our sources were split as to whether Kravtsov had ever been part of any latent trade discussion between the Rangers and the Canucks, however. What is clearer is that Kravtsov is a player of interest for the Canucks and that interest may not necessarily be tethered to any of the flashy star-level players popping up in Canucks-centric trade rumours as we approach the NHL’s silly season.

source – ‘Inside the start of a new Canucks regime, what’s next for Brock Boeser and trade deadline targets’ – Thomas Drance and Rick Dhaliwal  – The Athletic – 02/09/2022

Blues Will Be Cautious Heading into Trade Deadline

While the St. Loius Blues will look to add at this year’s trade deadline, GM Doug Armstrong said he’s cautious about rentals because of how adding them can upset the team’s chemistry after that rental leaves. Noting that players with term will often feel unwanted and then bitter about being asked to come back and play their role one the rental who replaced them leaves, it’s a tricky thing to navigate.

St. Louis Blues Doug Armstrong
St. Louis Blues general manager Doug Armstrong. (THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jeff Roberson)

At the same time, he notes that the Blues will also need to be careful not to add players with term and then be stuck not being able to clear cap space in the summer. Pierre LeBrun writes in a recent column for The Athletic:

“I think the Blues will kick tires on the likes of rental players such as Mark Giordano (if he’s made available) and Ben Chiarot among others, but what I don’t think you’ll see is St. Louis paying a high price. …What I believe St. Louis will do is hang in on a bunch of D trade conversations but only pull the trigger if the price drops closer to the deadline.”

source – ‘LeBrun: Blues GM Doug Armstrong on what to expect at the trade deadline’ – Pierre LeBrun – The Athletic – 02/14/2022
Morning Skate newsletter Click To Subscribe