NHL Rumors: Stars, Wild, Rangers, Canadiens Kane Update

In today’s NHL rumors rundown, the Dallas Stars are actively trying to trade defenseman John Klingberg. Meanwhile, the New York Rangers and Montreal Canadiens have begun talking about a possible trade. Eric Staal is still holding out hope an NHL comes calling and more than one team is waiting to see what happens with the NHL’s investigation into Evander Kane.

Stars Looking for Klingberg Trade Partner

According to Jeff Marek, the Dallas Stars have made a decision on the future of defenseman John Klingberg and the decision to trade the talented offensive defenseman. Marek notes that the Stars “have stepped up their efforts to trade John Klingberg, we believe very much he is getting dealt.” Marek adds that it’s hard to say exactly when but that Dallas does seem aggressive in trying to get something done.

John Klingberg Dallas Stars
John Klingberg, Dallas Stars (Jess Starr/The Hockey Writers)

Teams Waiting on NHL Kane Investigation To Conclude

Elliotte Friedman noted that there are a couple of teams still waiting to see what comes of the NHL’s investigation into Evander Kane’s allegedly traveling illegally over the border on Dec 29, 2021. Kane maintains he did nothing wrong and Canadian border services are looking into the matter but are not commenting. The NHL says they have no timeline on when they’ll have an answer for teams.

Related: Holland Just Made Tyson Barrie the Oilers’ Most Likely Trade Chip

As for the clubs who are waiting to see what comes of this, the Edmonton Oilers are definitely in. Beyond that, any other teams being mentioned in connection to Kane is only being speculated at this point.

Eric Staal Wants an NHL Gig, Won’t Be With Wild

According to a report by Michael Russo of The Athletic, Eric Staal is very excited about the potential of playing in the Olympics for Team Canada, but he is really still hoping an NHL club calls and offers him an opportunity to play again this season. He’s got the itch to play and he’s watching teams closely to see if anyone feels the need to add a player like him based on unexpected circumstances.

Dean Evason Minnesota Wild
Dean Evason, Interim head coach, Mikko Koivu, Eric Staal, and Ryan Donato of the Minnesota Wild (Photo by Bruce Kluckhohn/NHLI via Getty Images)

Russo writes:

But Staal also openly admits that as much as he’d like to represent his country in the Olympics again, if an NHL team expresses interest in signing him before the Olympics and it’s the right fit, he’d be willing to sign immediately as a free agent. He has been skating three times a week in Edina, Minn., and is raring to go.

source -‘Eric Staal on potential Team Canada Olympic nod, future NHL gig: ‘I still have the itch to play’ – Michael Russo – The Athletic – 01/13/2022

Staal would prefer to play with the Minnesota Wild, but he knows it’s unrealistic to expect that the Wild, who moved on from him, would be interested in bringing him back. According to Russo, Wild GM Bill Guerin has actually told Staal it’s not happening.

Rangers Interested in Lehkonen of Canadiens

According to Arthur Staple of The Athletic, the New York Rangers are trying to add bottom-six depth to their roster, especially after news that Sammy Blais was going to be out the remainder of the season. One of the targets the Rangers have keyed in on is Canadiens winger Artturi Lehkonen.

Artturi Lehkonen Montreal Canadiens
Artturi Lehkonen, Montreal Canadiens (Jess Starr/The Hockey Writers)

Staple writes:

Artturi Lehkonen has been all over the trade-targets lists for a bit, and sources told The Athletic that Drury and his former boss, Canadiens hockey operations chief Jeff Gorton, have been in contact regarding Lehkonen, who is a pending restricted free agent with arbitration rights and is due a $2.3 million qualifying offer. The talks are believed to have been preliminary.

source – ‘How to fix the Rangers’ forward group: Internal solutions, plus trade targets for the top 6, third line and fourth line’ – Arthur Staple – The Athletic – 01/13/2022

It is said that the cost to acquire the player could be substantial because he’s not a rental.

Also out of Montreal, it is believed that the Canadiens are waiting for Kent Hughes to make a decision about taking the GM job.

Morning Skate newsletter Click To Subscribe