In today’s NHL rumors rundown, are the Pittsburgh Penguins looking for a backup goaltender? Meanwhile, is Sidney Crosby going to receive any supplemental discipline for throwing a Washington Capitals player to the ice? There are questions about who the Anaheim Ducks should move if they embrace a rebuild and the Toronto Maple Leafs are concerned about playing time for a couple of key players.
Penguins Might Need to Address Goaltending
It was mentioned in yesterday’s rumors report that the Montreal Canadiens might need to search the market for a goaltender. They aren’t the only team with concerns. According to Dan Kingerski of Pittsburgh Hockey Now, the Penguins might be in the market for a netminder after watching repeated poor performances by backup goaltender Casey DeSmith. DeSmith has allowed four or more goals in seven in his past nine starts.
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Kingerski writes that the Penguins did search the market during the offseason even though the team relayed they were confident in their tandem. Perhaps one of Filip Lindberg (October AHL goalie of the month) or Louis Domingue will be a part of their future plans. The Penguins don’t have much salary cap room, but Kingserki threw the names Braden Holtby, Joonas Korpisalo, and possibly Petr Mrazek out there.
Also with the Penguins, Sidney Crosby will not receive NOT received any supplemental discipline from NHL Player Safety after throwing Washington Capitals player Martin Fehervary into the boards on Sunday. The play is getting a ton of talk because there was no penalty on the ice either and there’s been a lot of debate about star players not getting calls when other players impede them. Crosby seemed to take matters into his own hands.
Ducks to Embrace Rebuild, Move On From Gibson?
According to NBC Sports’ James O’Brien, the Anaheim Ducks would be best served to embrace a full rebuild following Bob Murray’s resignation as general manager. Part of that rebuild would include moving goaltender John Gibson, waiting to get the best deal in a sell-high trade.
Gibson has played well for the surprisingly competitive Ducks and carries a $6.4 million annual cap hit through 2026-27. There would be a number of teams looking for goaltenders that would be willing to part with some valuable assets to acquire him and have him under team control for a few more seasons. O’Brien suggests that if the Ducks start to regress and Gibson’s performances suffer as a result, the market won’t be as seller-friendly.
O’Brien also suggested shopping Ryan Getzlaf, Rickard Rakell, Hampus Lindholm, and Josh Manson who are all on expiring contracts. And, because the Ducks have salary cap space, they could get creative with trades and take on some bad contracts, while getting excellent prospects and high-end draft picks.
Maple Leafs Concerned Their Overworking Jack Campbell?
Jonas Siegel of The Athletic writes that there could be a concern in Toronto that goaltender Jack Campbell is being overworked and that while he’s playing like the team’s MVP to start the year, he can’t possibly maintain this pace. He’s played in 13 of the Leafs’ first 16 games.
The unfortunate thing is, the Leafs don’t have a great alternative as Mrazek is having a hard time staying healthy and “the Leafs’ faith in Michael Hutchinson, evidently, had dried up (again).”
If Campbell keeps playing this well, the Leafs will be hard-pressed to keep him out of the net, especially if the alternatives remain the same. Still, they need to ensure the wheels don’t come off, that Campbell doesn’t suffer an injury or see his performance slip from overwork.
Siegel wonders if the Leafs will seek out some help in goal. The team could give Joseph Woll a look, but they weren’t expecting him to play already.
Still with the Maple Leafs, Siegel writes that the Maple Leafs have decided to lower Wayne Simmonds’ minutes and will keep him slotted into a very specific depth role. It won’t include power play time and it shouldn’t see him on the ice for more than 10 minutes per game. The hope is that smaller doses of ice time will maximize what he can do while playing.
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.”