In today’s rumor rundown, Kevin Hayes is keeping a close eye on his situation in New York, the Los Angeles Kings might be forced to make some personnel changes and scouts are checking out the Vancouver Canucks, mainly Alex Edler. Plus, does anyone know what’s going on in Winnipeg with Jacob Trouba?
Kevin Hayes Wants to be Part of Ranger Rebuild
Kevin Hayes is keeping a close eye on his situation with the New York Rangers who are going to have a difficult decision to make regarding their center. Larry Brooks of the New York Post writes that the team is rebuilding, and at the age of 26, Hayes is young enough to be part of their core, but he’s also a trade asset that could be used to acquire picks or younger talent.
Hayes acknowledged he understands what’s happening with his team but that it hasn’t changed his mind on wanting to stay. “I’m watching this develop, and it would be cool to be here for this rebuild,” he said. “I want to be part of the future.”
He added that he’s not going to get involved and he’ll let his agent do the talking but he said that when he’s eligible for a new deal on January 1, 2019, he hopes the team and his agent find a way to get it done.
There are plenty of teams who could use a reliable center and Jan 1. may not come for Hayes as part of the organization if the team decides he makes for a better trade chip.
Kings Ready to Make a Move?
Darren Dreger on TSN said that despite while people are looking at John Stevens as a possible coaching casualty in Los Angeles, perhaps there are other moves the Kings intend to make first before firing the head coach. Speculation is that some of the Kings’ top players might be available in trade.
Dreger did admit that before GM Rob Blake starts moving pieces that things will need to come off the rails but that if they do, watch for a name like Alec Martinez to pop up as a trade possibility. Blake was asked about Dreger’s report and responded:
“I’m not going to go into specifics into any of the [phone] calls. Listen, when you start a season like this, you’re going to have a lot of different rumors. That’s all I can say.”
source – ‘Kings general manager Rob Blake addresses the team’s struggles’ –
When Martinez was asked about the rumors, he said, “As far as I’m concerned, it’s not worth giving any thought because it’s not going to make things any better.” He added that no matter who rumors pop up about, the players need to stay focused. “I, like everyone else in this room, am focused on our game, focused on getting wins and quite frankly, I don’t give a … about the rest.”
Scouts Watching Canucks Defensemen
Elliotte Friedman was on Sportsnet 650 and discussed a large number of scouts at the Canucks game on Monday night. The Canucks have some extra defensemen, potentially Ben Hutton and Alexander Edler who might be available in trade and teams were doing their due diligence.
Friedman explained, “I do think teams are watching Edler this year. From what I understand, Edler is a pretty heavily-scouted player this year.” He added that people know Edler is in the last year of his deal and there’s not a lot floating out there about him being extended in Vancouver.
If they haven’t heard much about Edler being extended, the belief is he’ll be available in trade and teams want to know if he’ll fit in their roster. Friedman suggested the Tampa Bay Lightning or Pittsburgh Penguins might be a fit.
The Uncertainty of Jacob Trouba
Bob McKenzie suggested that there is no indication of what the Winnipeg Jets plan to do with Jacob Trouba. The belief is that the team does not want to trade him this season as he’s a valuable part of the potential Stanley Cup run but that as a restricted free agent who has not been able to come to terms on a long-term deal, his future in Winnipeg is questionable at best.
McKenzie said, “He’s playing lights-out right now. But if he’s not signed long-term to a deal this summer, I think the writing is on the wall.” He added, “But this is going to be the summer that defines whether Jacob Trouba is a long-term Jet.”
McKenzie suggested there is speculation the team may try to trade him a year before he’s unrestricted.
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.”