NHL Rumors: Bruins, Canucks, Flyers, Blackhawks, Plus Eichel Ready

In today’s NHL rumors rundown, one scribe asks if the Boston Bruins are a dark horse to land one of the big-ticket pending UFAs that could be traded by this year’s NHL trade deadline. Meanwhile, the Vancouver Canucks aren’t rushing any trades but now know what they can expect to get in return for J.T. Miller after the Tyler Toffoli trade on Monday. Claude Giroux has informed the Philadelphia Flyers about what teams he’d accept a trade to and what are the Chicago Blackhawks being offered for Bandon Hagel? Finally, Jack Eichel returns to the NHL on Wednesday night.

Are Bruins A Dark Horse to Land Fleury?

Jimmy Murphy of Boston Hockey NOW took a look at the chances the Bruins might be able to add one of Claude Giroux or Marc-André Fleury in a trade ahead of the deadline. Pointing out that TSN’s Jamie McLennan names the Bruins as a dark horse to land Fleury after Tuukka Rask’s comeback hit a major snag, Murphy writes the cost of acquisition might be too high and aren’t willing to spend that much considering what they already have in goal.

Substack Subscribe to the THW Daily and never miss the best of The Hockey Writers Banner

Murphy also seemingly ruled the Bruins out on Giroux, which as you’ll note from the next bit of news, probably wouldn’t have mattered anyway.

Giroux Tells Flyers He Has Three Teams He’ll Go To

According to an Adrian Dater tweet on Monday, Giroux informed the Philadelphia Flyers that the ideal trade would see him land with the Colorado Avalanche. This is the team he’s requested GM Chuck Fletcher try to work a deal with. Giroux knows it’s not a given so if the Avalanche can’t make it work, the Minnesota Wild and St. Louis Blues would be acceptable alternatives.

If the Avalanche are going to somehow pull this trade off with only $1.7 million in projected salary cap space ahead of the trade deadline, they’ll need the Flyers to retain close to 50 percent of Giroux’s $8.25 million cap hit. Beyond that, it could also mean trying to get a third team (like Arizona, Ottawa, Detroit or Buffalo) involved.

Asking Price for J.T. Miller Now Set?

With the Tyler Toffoli trade on Monday, speculation is that teams are looking at that deal between the Calgary Flames and Montreal Canadiens and telling themselves that’s likely the asking price for J.T. Miller out of Vancouver. As Joe Haggerty of Boston Hockey Now points out, there are a number of similarities between Toffoli and Miller.

J.T. Miller, Mike Smith
Vancouver Canucks J.T. Miller is stopped by Edmonton Oilers goalie Mike Smith (THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jason Franson)

The ask for Miller might be slightly higher as Haggerty writes:

“… are comparable veteran forwards that both have additional years on their contracts, so they would be considered comparable in many ways. The 28-year-old Miller might have the upper hand given that he’s got that one 27-goal, a 74-point campaign under his belt, and given the versatility that allows him to play both center and wing.”

The one thing going for the Canucks is that they don’t feel as though they are in any rush to trade players. Jim Rutherford spoke with Scott Burnside of Daily Faceoff and explained that none of the big names rumored to be moved out of Vancouver are pending unrestricted free agents. He said:

Well, we’re in a position that we don’t have to feel any pressure this year because we don’t have top players where they’re going to be UFAs. So there’s no urgency here to make those kinds of decisions. Our decisions will be made step by step as to what we think is best for the franchise now and in the future.

Related: Hurricanes News & Rumors: Kochetkov, Concerning Trends & More

Also with the Canucks, head coach Bruce Boudreau told beat reporter Jeff Paterson that he doesn’t anticipate that veteran forward Brandon Sutter will return to play at any point this season.

Eichel Ready to Make NHL Return

Vegas GM Kelly McCrimmon said Monday that Jack Eichel will play Wednesday night against Colorado. Eichel was asked about his return at a media avail and said, “I’m at that point where I’m ready to play. You can practice as much as you want. Obviously, the game is different and I just want to get back in there and start getting my confidence back playing a game.”

As expected, Mark Stone will be going on LTIR to make room for Eichel’s $10 million salary. When asked about how long Stone might be out, McCrimmon said:

“Our number one priority is Mark Stone’s health. It’s clearly not in a place where it needs to be for him to be successful. It’s not in a place it needs to be for our team. He’s our captain. The man wears his heart on his sleeve every time he puts on our uniform…”

Blackhawks Could Rake in Big Return for Hagel

According to Frank Seravalli on the Daily Faceoff Rundown podcast, if the Blackhawks trade Hagel, they can expect to get at least a first-round pick and a top prospect. It sounds like at least one team has already offered that.

Hagel has two seasons remaining on a very team-friendly contract of $1.5 million per season. He’s got 14 goals and 27 points in 43 games and there are playoff-bound teams kicking tires on his availability.