In today’s NHL rumors rundown, it’s not Bruins or bust for goaltender Tuukka Rask. Does that mean a team like the Edmonton Oilers would have a shot at the netminder? Are the Florida Panthers going to look at trying to replace Aleksander Barkov’s production after he went down with an injury? Vancouver Canucks’ general manager Jim Benning spoke about the team’s struggles and offered
some little clarification as to whether or not Travis Green’s job as head coach was safe. Finally, who could be moved out of Montreal? Are both Ben Chiarot and Brendan Gallagher possible assets on the trade market?
Not Bruins or Bust for Rask
Sportsnet’s Elliotte Friedman was asked during a Thursday appearance on The Jeff Marek Show if Tuukka Rask back the Bruins is the only realistic option for the veternan. Friedman responded, “I don’t think it’s Boston or bust. At least that’s not the information that I’ve heard,” He added, “I’ve just heard the Bruins remain his No. 1 priority. Now, we’ll see what happens, but that’s just what I’ve heard.”
Marek was really trying get a sense of whether or not a team like the Edmonton Oilers would make sense when it comes to teams kicking tires on Rask. The Oilers are currently trying to figure out their goaltending situation as Mike Smith seems unhealthy but Stuart Skinner had a great performance against the Winnipeg Jets on Thursday night. Mikko Koskinen has been steady, but is prone to let in bad goals at key times.
Panthers Not Rushing to Trade Market
As per TSN’s Pierre LeBrun, despite the Florida Panthers losing Barkov to a knee injury, they aren’t looking at what forwards are available on the trade market. A team that has played well and has the most points in the NHL, the organization believes they can weather the storm.
“We all saw the hit, knee-on-knee, a couple nights ago. But they believe they have the depth to get through this while Barkov is out. Now, part of the reason they don’t need to go out and get help is the injury isn’t as bad as when you might have looked at that hit. I’m told he’s going to be out three-to-four weeks with a mild sprain. So again, probably avoiding what could have been a catastrophe for Sasha Barkov.”
Travis Green Job Security Canucks
When asked if Travis Green’s job was safe with the Canucks, GM Jim Benning said:
“We’re looking at everything right now. I’ve been working with the coaches, the coaches work with the players. We’ve been talking to agents about their players to just see where they’re at and what they’re thinking and how we can help. I’ve looked to the outside, talking to other general managers from other teams to see what’s available.”
Benning wouldn’t come right out and say that Green was either safe or on the hot seat. He just continually noted that the Canucks are not where they want to be and that they are looking at a number of options when it comes to trying to get back on the right track. The GM was confident the group he has can perform better.
Gallagher a Possible Trade Piece?
It’s tricky to know who might be safe and who might be a possible trade piece out of Montreal if things continue to slide but TVA Sports’ Anthony Martineau and Nicolas Cloutier weighed in on which Montreal Canadiens players could be traded if the team was to being selling off before the deadline.
Martineau suggested the Canadiens shop Brendan Gallagher but knows the 29-year-old winger’s $6.25 million cap hit through 2026-27 could be difficult to move. Saying that Gallagher hasn’t played well and often been selfish during this bad run by the Habs, there have been instances this season where he’s made things worse in Montreal and not better.
While Gallagher may be struggling in Montreal, Martineau feels the player’s overall reputation for hard work would make him enticing for some clubs. If the Canadiens were willing to retain some salary, they could find a taker before the deadline.
There was also mention by Elliotte Friedman that Ben Chiarot could be on the move and notes, “The team that really sticks out to me that should probably be feeling very good about itself thinking about what it could do is a team like Edmonton”.
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.”