NHL Rumors: Oilers, Maple Leafs, Senators, Avs, More

In today’s NHL rumor rundown, there is news on who the Maple Leafs will count on to replace Morgan Reilly, there is news out of Ottawa when it comes to what the Senators will do with goaltender Craig Anderson and the Edmonton Oilers aren’t happy with the Zack Kassian ruling. And, would the New York Rangers actually consider moving Henrik Lundqvist if there was an interested team?

Maple Leafs Call Up Another Defenseman

In the face of a rash of injuries to the blue line corps, the Toronto Maple Leafs have recalled Timothy Liljegren from the AHL Marlies team. This comes just following news the Maple Leafs were also going to give defenseman Rasmus Sandin another look.

Marlies defenseman Timothy Liljegren
HERSHEY, PA – MARCH 15: Toronto Marlies defenseman Timothy Liljegren (7) skates to the puck during the Toronto Marlies vs. the Hershey Bears AHL hockey game March 15, 2019 at the Giant Center in Hershey, PA. (Photo by Randy Litzinger/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images)

With both Morgan Rielly and Jake Muzzin out, the Maple Leafs are doing everything in their power to stay afloat when it comes to their defense. These young defenseman will need to step up in a major way even if Liljegren is not likely to see action immediately. When asked what his plan is for Liljegren, head coach Sheldon Keefe said, “No real expectation. At this stage he’s just here to give us an extra guy and we think given the circumstances that he’s very much the next man up.” He added, “Just having him around a little bit more and around our group would serve him well.”

Related: Alexei Yashin Trade Revisited

Craig Anderson Trade Value Dropping

The Ottawa Senators are looking to move goaltender Craig Anderson prior to this year’s NHL Trade Deadline. The only problem, his trade value is rapidly falling.

Craig Anderson Ottawa Senators
Craig Anderson, Ottawa Senators (Amy Irvin / The Hockey Writers)

Anderson, 38, is running out of chances to win a Stanley Cup and the Senators are likely sellers this season. So even though both sides ready to try and get something done, it requires another team to bite. The Ottawa Sun’s Bruce Garrioch writes:

And, if the Ottawa Senators are serious about moving the 38-year-old goaltender before the Feb. 24 trade deadline at 3 p.m. EST then Anderson is going to have to get back into the net and prove he can help a contender down the stretch.

source-‘Anderson has to improve if he has any hopes of being dealt at deadline’ – Bruce Garrioch – Ottawa Sun – 01/13/2020

That could be a tough sell for the Senators because Anderson has not been good. He’s allowed four or more goals in each of his last four games and has a save percentage below .900. If he doesn’t get a chance to improve on those totals, the reality is, there are a lot better options out there for teams.

Related: What Can the Senators Get for Borowiecki at the Deadline?

Avalanche Interested in Henrik Lundqvist?

While it’s the consensus feeling the veteran goaltender doesn’t want to leave New York, Mike Chambers of The Denver Post believes the Colorado Avalanche have a trade option in Rangers goaltender Henrik Lundqvist.

Henrik Lundqvist New York Rangers
Henrik Lundqvist, New York Rangers (Jess Starr/The Hockey Writers)

The Avs might be looking for another option in net with both Philipp Grubauer and Pavel Francouz struggling. They also have the cap space to add Lundqvist who shows as a $8.5 million cap hit but earns just $5.5 million in actual salary for next season.

Chambers writes:

Lundqvist could be that guy for the Avs in 2020 or 2021, and the Rangers are undoubtedly looking at trading one of their three goalies. That’s not a typo — New York is carrying three goalies, including two young ones in Alexandar Georgiev, 23, and Igor Shesterkin, 24 — the latter of whom defeated the Avs in his NHL debut Jan. 7 in New York.

source – ‘Analysis: Avalanche could look into acquiring “King” Henrik Lundqvist’ – Denver Post – 01/13/2020

Could Lundqvist be convinced to move to an Avs teams that many consider to be a legitimate contender?

Related: NHL Rumors: Maple Leafs, Senators, Kings, More

Oilers Unhappy About Kassian Ruling

“The guy’s in a vulnerable position. Ask any guy in the league, no one wants to see that hit.” These were the words James Neal said to the media after news Zack Kassian had been suspended two games for his attack on Matthew Tkachuk during Saturday’s game. Neal went on to call the whole thing stupid.

James Neal Edmonton Oilers
James Neal, Edmonton Oilers (Jess Starr/The Hockey Writers)

Saying there is a lot of respect being lost in the league, especially by Tkachuk, he asked, “Am I going to see Lucic come around the net, target his head and try to kill him? No, because he’d kill me.” He added, “You don’t see anyone else in the league doing that because they know they have to fight him.”

Leon Draisaitl was asked how he’ll handle things if he’s slotted on the same line as Tkachuk during the All-Star Game next weekend and he said, “I’d probably get off the ice.”

Related: Good News and Bad: Kassian Suspended Two Games