NHL Rumors: Oilers, Stars, Rangers, Blue Jackets, More

In today’s rumor rundown, we look at the Edmonton Oilers search for a new GM, the New York Rangers bringing over a high-end prospect, the Dallas Stars having issues with Alexader Radulov and the Columbus Blue Jackets perhaps regretting some of their trade deadline decisions.

Oilers Getting Closer In GM Search

Darren Dreger was on TSN 1260 and said that the Edmonton Oilers and getting closer to taking the next steps in their search for a new general manager. Dreger called it the “next phase” of the search.

Kelly McCrimmon - Vegas Golden Knights
KELOWNA, CANADA – OCTOBER 25: Head coach Kelly McCrimmon of Brandon Wheat Kings could be Oilers next GM. (Photo by Marissa Baecker/Getty Images)

Dreger commented, “I expect that the timeline is probably the next 10-14 days where Nicholson starts to finally reach out, seek permission, from some of the candidates, and there could be as many as 10 on this list.” On his list, Dreger believes is Kelly McCrimmon, Dave Nonis, Sean Burke, Mike Futa, and Mark Hunter. He also thinks current interim GM Keith Gretzky gets a good long look.

If the Oilers decide to reach out to teams in the next two weeks, they may not get permission to speak with everyone, thus it’s difficult to assume a decision is coming soon. The organization may want to wait until they can speak with all of their leading candidates.

Related: NHL Rumors: Islanders, Wild, NHL GM Meetings, More

McCrimmon Wanted by Two Teams

While McCrimmon is garnering interest from the Edmonton Oilers, that the Oilers can’t and won’t likely get a chance to speak with him for some time is fine by the new Seattle franchise as they have McCrimmon at the top of their GM candidates list.

TSN’s Pierre LeBrun said on TSN Insider Trading that, “… while Seattle hasn’t officially decided that they’re going to hire their first GM this summer that’s where they are leaning.” The speculation is that they are prepared to give him the paid gig two year before the puck drops in 2021-22.

Related: NHL Rumors: Senators, Red Wings, Franchise-Altering Moves

Rangers Close to Signing a Key Prospect

The New York Rangers are closing in on a contract with one of their top prospects, Russian forward Vitali Kravtsov. According to Sportsnet’s Mike Johnston, Kravtsov is expected to sign his entry-level deal right away.

Vitali Kravtsov, KHL
Vitali Kravtsov could be heading to New York, KHL, 2018. (Photo: HC Traktor)

KHL insider, Aivis Kalnins was the first to share the news but it is unclear if Kravtsov will come and join the Rangers right away. His current club Traktor Chelyabinsk has been knocked out of the KHL playoffs, so the Rangers could bring him in now or wait until next season.

Kravtsov was the ninth overall pick in last year’s NHL Draft. He’s got size, skill, speed and as a winger, has 21 points in 50 games this season. that’s very strong production from a teenager in the KHL. He may even make a jump this season the NHL club, skipping over the minors before he does.

Related: NHL Rumors: Brown, Simmonds, Canucks, Oilers, More

Trouble in Dallas With Alexander Radulov?

There always seems to be something going on in Dallas. The drama that surrounds the team is never ending and today, it looks like Alexander Radulov will be left out of the lineup after showing up late to practice.

Alexander Radulov - Dallas Stars
Alexander Radulov and Stars not seeing eye to eye? (Jerome Miron-USA)

Sean Shapiro who covers the Stars for The Athletic tweeted, “Monty: “Radulov’s going to be out. He was late this morning. That’s all I’m going to talk about it.” Radulov declined to speak to media after skating.”

This could be as simple as the Stars enforcing a rule that if you’re late you don’t skate but this is now the second time the team and Radulov have had their issues and it sounds like some people get the sense there might be a problem between the two sides.

Blue Jackets Already Regretting Trade Deadline Moves?

While the Columbus Blue Jackets haven’t exactly been on fire since the NHL trade deadline and are hanging onto a playoff spot (barely), one player the team already seems to regret trading for is defenseman Adam McQuaid.

Adam McQuaid, New York Rangers
Adam McQuaid, former New York Rangers defenseman, September 27, 2018 (Amy Irvin / The Hockey Writers)

A healthy scratch in the Blue Jackets loss to the Winnipeg Jets, it appears McQuaid will be sitting out again when the team takes on New Jersey. “I have to make decisions on who I think is our best six, and right now [McQuaid] isn’t that,” Tortorella said on Monday. “I don’t know what he is; I know the character of this guy, that is a big reason why we got him, he is a high character guy. Little concerned about the speed of the game with him, so we went back to the other guys.

Listen to the Latest Version of The Hockey Writers Podcast