In today’s rumor rundown, there is news on the Maple Leafs scouting the Hurricanes and chatting with defenseman Jake Gardiner. Meanwhile, there are updates on Kevin Hayes in New York and Matt Duchene and Mark Stone in Ottawa.
Maple Leafs and Hurricanes Still Talking Trade
TSN’s Pierre LeBrun is reporting that the Toronto Maple Leafs and Carolina Hurricanes are still talking despite the Maple Leafs adding Jake Muzzin in trade a few days ago. LeBrun writes, “One of my sources in Buffalo saw Maple Leafs assistant general manager Laurence Gilman in the press box in Buffalo for Thursday’s game against the Carolina Hurricanes.” He didn’t think the Leafs were there to scout the Sabres.
LeBrun wasn’t sure if the Leafs were there to look at one of Carolina’s right-handed d-men or if they were taking a closer look at Micheal Ferland, who is a power forward that has been on the market.
Leafs Also Speaking With Gardiner’s Agent?
LeBrun also noted that hockey agent Pat Brisson was at the Maple Leafs game where they took on the Ottawa Senators on Wednesday. He met with Leafs GM Kyle Dubas after the game to catch up a bit. Brisson represents defenseman Jake Gardiner and the assumption is that they were talking about the situation between Gardiner and the Maple Leafs.
Most are assuming Gardiner is a gone as of next season but Dubas has made a point of saying he’s trying to keep all the pieces together in Toronto. While Gardiner is a polarizing figure in that city, he has value. It’s simply about how much he believes in his value and if he wants to make as much as possible on an extension. If so, he’ll likely have to do so outside of Toronto.
The Latest on Kevin Hayes
Darren Dreger was on Montreal’s TSN 690 radio show and referenced what was going on between the New York Rangers and pending UFA forward Kevin Hayes. Dreger said tt’s still possible that the Rangers and Hayes could come to an agreement on an extension, but it’s more likely he’s moved to a contending team at the deadline.
Dreger said, “Kevin Hayes, to me, should be a player that Minnesota or a team like Winnipeg should be looking at. I mean, just everything he brings, I think he’d fit nicely in that conference.”
Bob McKenzie said, “I think the New York Rangers believe if they can get a first-round pick and something for Kevin Hayes, that would be fantastic. If they can get a first-round pick or a top prospect – not both, but one of those – for Zuccarello, that would be great too.”
McKenzie Says Outlook For Stone and Duchene Staying Not Good
McKenzie released his latest TSN Hockey Bobcast on Thursday and during the show said, “My needle on Stone and Duchene is that they’re not going to sign in Ottawa and they’re going to be traded.” He went on to explain that they could sign extensions and that he believes the Senators will continue to make plays to get those extensions done but by Monday, there should be a much clearer indication as to what’s going on with these two players.
McKenzie believes that Stone will get $9 million-plus per season on the open market and Duchene at least $8 million per season. If Ottawa stands a chance, they’ll need to get the money up to that level to keep either player.
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Jim Parsons is a senior THW freelance writer, part-time journalist and audio/video host who lives, eats, sleeps and breathes NHL news and rumors, while also writing features on the Edmonton Oilers. He’s been a trusted source for five-plus years at The Hockey Writers, but more than that, he’s on a mission to keep readers up to date with the latest NHL rumors and trade talk. Jim is a daily must for readers who want to be “in the know.”