In today’s NHL rumor rundown, we look at the decreasing likelihood of the New Jersey Devils getting Taylor Hall re-signed, the Toronto Maple Leafs are constantly talking with Jason Spezza but does Mitch Marner’s injury change the conversation? The Boston Bruins have their eyes on the marketplace and the hockey landscape seems to have their eyes on Don Cherry after comments he made Saturday night.
Devils’ Chances of Signing Hall Dropping
Elliotte Friedman said during Saturday’s Headlines that he considers it unlikely the Devils find a way to extend Taylor Hall this season. At best, he re-signs but during the offseason and that’s a pretty big risk for the Devils to take considering that opens the door to the franchise losing him for nothing.
Friedman noted that Hall’s people and the Devils met in Calgary recently but things don’t seem closer to a resolution. Speculation is that Hall’s agent Darren Ferris wants Hall to wait to determine his true market value, which Friedman feels has put Devils general manager Ray Shero in a tricky situation.
Among the teams that might be rumored as interested in acquiring Hall either during the season or in free agency are the Colorado Avalanche, Edmonton Oilers, Vancouver Canucks, Calgary Flames, San Jose Sharks, Florida Panthers, and Pittsburgh Penguins.
Related: Do You Know Your Rangers Trivia?
Spezza Conversation Constant
When it was Chris Johnston’s turn during the Headlines report, he spoke of the ongoing rumors surrounding the Toronto Maple Leafs and Jason Spezza, confirming he believes Spezza is the odd man out when the Maple Leafs choose to activate Zach Hyman this week.
Now out of three-straight games as a healthy scratch, Johnston notes that Maple Leafs GM Kyle Dubas and coach Mike Babcock are constantly talking about what to do with Spezza and where he fits. That may have changed with the potential injury to Mitch Marner on Saturday.
How bad Marner’s injury is remains unclear and the two play a different positions so things may not be affected if Marner is out for any significant time, but it appears the Maple Leafs will get news on Marner, then make their decision on Spezza. Speculaiton is they will place him on waivers or attempt to trade him.
Related: Worst Toronto Maple Leafs Trades
Bruins Looking at Toffoli?
Jimmy Murphy of Boston Hockey NOW notes that the Boston Bruins are always looking to upgrade and that general manager Don Sweeney constantly has his eyes on the marketplace. The team has started strong but they want to improve their middle-six depth.
One name to watch out for here appears to be Tyler Toffoli. Known as a perennial 20-goal scorer, but one who is struggling a bit in Los Angeles, it is public knowledge that Toffoli — along with every other member of the Kings core except Drew Doughty and Anze Kopitar — are available on the market.
This may be a move that happens later in the season and closer to the trade deadline as his $4.6 million cap hit isn’t an albatross but it’s not insignificant. The Bruins and other teams are taking stock of the marketplace and Toffoli appears high on their list. Kevin Fiala might be another name to watch.
Don Cherry In Hot Water With Sportsnet?
Typically, we don’t discuss political topics while discussing hockey rumors but on Saturday, Don Cherry slammed the two worlds together and he could be in some hot water for it.
Cherry’s made the following comments during Saturday’s hockey broadcast:
“You people you come here you love our way of life, you love our milk and honey, at least you can pay a couple bucks for a poppy or something like that,” Cherry said during the controversial segment. “These guys paid for your way of life that you enjoy in Canada, these guys paid the biggest price.”
Sportsnet almost immediately issued a statement about those comments condemning Cherry’s words. They wrote in a public statement.
“Don’s discriminatory comments are offensive and they do not represent our values and what we stand for as a network,” read the statement. “We have spoke with Don about the severity of this issue and we sincerely apologize for these divisive remarks.”
There might be more coming as Sportsnet has taken some heat for not publicly announcing some kind of discipline for Cherry. This might be something to keep an eye on if the story continues to build steam.
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.”