NHL Rumors: Provorov, Faulk, Neal, More

In today’s rumor rundown the Flyers are sorting out plans for Ivan Provorov and Travis Konecny, Carolina is still trying to trade Justin Faulk and Johnny Hockey wants James Neal.

Flyers Working on Their Own Guys

Dave Isaac of the Cherry Hill Courier-Post reports, the Philadelphia Flyers have had internal discussions about early extensions for defenseman Ivan Provorov and winger Travis Konecny. With both entering the final year of their entry-level contracts and both restricted free agents without arbitration rights, there’s no rush to sign either player but the team would like both in the fold long-term.

Travis Konecny Flyers
Travis Konecny Flyers (Amy Irvin / The Hockey Writers)

Konecny scored 24 goals and 47 points for the Flyers last season. That was more than double his previous season goal total and nearly double the total points. Should the Flyers wait a full season to sign him he could be more costly and the right play might be to try and sign him now. Provorov has steadily increased his production and role on the hockey club as well. With 41 points from the blue line last season, including 17 goals, he might be looking at north of $5.5 million on a long-term deal should he keep that production going.

Related: NHL Rumors: Matthews, Seguin, Lombardi, More

Hurricanes Still Working on Faulk Trade

Matt Larking of The Hockey News is reporting that despite the NHL trade market seemingly coming to a halt, the Carolina Hurricanes are still looking to make a move, specifically, shipping out either or both defenseman, Justin Faulk and left wing, Jeff Skinner.

Justin Faulk - Carolina Hurricanes
(Brace Hemmelgarn-US PRESSWIRE)

The Hurricanes are overloaded on blueliners and Faulk is the more pressing of the two players the Hurricanes would like to move. Larkin is suggesting the Toronto Maple Leafs and Chicago Blackhawks could have interest and the Blackhawks might also be interested in Skinner. The problem Larkin believes facing the Blackhawks is that Carolina is looking for a dominant center and Chicago doesn’t have one to offer up.

It could come down to Faulk moving for picks and prospects but that’s not what the Hurricanes are searching for.

Related: NHL Rumors: Nylander, Strome, Reinhart, More

Pittsburgh Will Be Patient But Aware

Jason Mackey of The Pittsburgh Post-Gazette reports Penguins GM Jim Rutherford said he’s prepared to be patient and stick with his team but that he’ll also be watching the market and ready to make a move if the opportunity presents itself. Rutherford is not worried about the optics of carrying six centers, suggesting he might have more moves in store but is in no rush.

Quenneville Not Worried About Getting Fired

Joel Quenneville acknowledged some uncertainty about his future as coach of the Chicago Blackhawks on Friday but also noted he’s not worried, doesn’t think about getting fired and wasn’t concerned about the comments made by owner Rocky Wirtz in June.

Joel Quenneville Blackhawks
Joel Quenneville, Chicago Blackhawks, Nov. 9, 2017 (Amy Irvin / The Hockey Writers)

“As a coach, [getting fired] can happen at any moment. That’s all part of our business. It’s the way it goes,” Quenneville said. He understands that winning is what keeps a coach employed and that’s all they think about while doing their job. He added, “We’re fighting to get two points, getting the guys ready to play and playing right.”

Back on June 4, Wirtz told Crain’s Chicago Business that “nothing lasts forever” and changes could occur after the holidays if Chicago wasn’t doing well. Many took that to be a threat or a warning that Chicago better come out of the gate strong this season but Wirtz then noted he wasn’t trying to send a message with his comments. “You see a lot of these decisions [around the NHL] are made at the spur of the moment. It’s something that I hope we never get to,” Wirtz said. “As long as I’m around, we’re never going to allow ourselves to be that way.”

Quenneville has been the coach in Chicago since Oct. 16, 2008, and Bowman the general manager since July 14, 2009. It was only last season, when the Blackhawks missed the playoffs, that either was ever looked at as potential candidates to lose their jobs.

Related: NHL Rumors: Gardiner, Panarin, Eaves, More

Johnny Hockey Wants James Neal

Johnny Gaudreau said he’s pushing for the Calgary Flames to deploy a line that consists of himself, Sean Monahan and new teammate James Neal. “I think he’s [going to be] a great addition to, hopefully, our line,” Gaudreau told the Courier Post. He noted the combination of his playmaking ability and Neal’s ability to shoot would compliment each other well.

Johnny Gaudreau #13 of the Calgary Flames
Johnny Gaudreau #13 of the Calgary Flames (Photo by Sean M. Haffey/Getty Images)

Calgary hasn’t had a top-line winger to play with Gaudreau and Monahan since the failed Troy Brouwer experiment. The duo have stayed dangerous on the ice but adding a pure scorer could allow the trio to “do some big things together.”

Neal signed a five-year contract worth $5.75 million per season with the Flames on July 2. he’d scored 25 goals for the Vegas Golden Knights during their inaugural season but chose to move on when the team wasn’t prepared to meet his contract demands. Neal is about as consistent a 20-goal scorer as there is in the NHL.