NHL Rumors: Blues, Senators, Devils, Maple Leafs, More

In today’s NHL rumor rundown, the St. Louis Blues got hit with devastating news that Vladimir Tarasenko is out for what might be the remainder of the season. Will the team make a move to replace his offense? Did the Ottawa Senators call up a player because they intend to move on from another? What will the Toronto Maple Leafs do to make room for Zach Hyman and Travis Dermott and are the New Jersey Devils looking for a better goaltender?

Blues to Find Replacement for Tarasenko?

According to a report from the St. Louis Blues official website it now appears as though forward Vladimir Tarasenko will miss the remainder of the season (at least five months). Will the Blues now try and acquire someone once they put Tarasenko on long-term injury reserve?

St. Louis Blues Vladimir Tarasenko
St. Louis Blues right wing Vladimir Tarasenko (AP Photo/Kathleen Malone-Van Dyke)

Given that Tarasenko won’t be with the team over the course of the regular season and given that the Blues will place his $7.5 million cap hit on LTIR, it will open up some financial flexibility and if the Blues can stay competitive, likely opens up the option to acquire someone else.

On the flip side, there is a chance the Blues could struggle and if they do, they might become sellers. This could include moving Alex Pietrangelo.

Related: Revisiting the Brayden Schenn Trade

Senators Numbering Boedker’s Days With the Team?

The Ottawa Senators have called up 22-year-old Filip Chlapik from the American Hockey League and Senators beat reporter Bruce Garrioch believes this indicates the writing is on the wall for Mikkel Boedker.

Mikkel Boedker Ottawa Senators
Mikkel Boedker, Ottawa Senators (Amy Irvin / The Hockey Writers)

In his Monday Ottawa Sun report, Garrioch states that if Senators rookie head coach DJ Smith chooses to bench Boedker, it won’t really comes as a surprise or get kickback by the fan base. He writes:

Since Smith doesn’t want to play Boedker, the club may find another forward that can put a pressure on the veterans and allow the staff to sit guys more often if it becomes a necessity.

“Part of my job is to hold people accountable, to hold my staff accountable and they’ll hold me accountable. You have to put in your work before anything,” said Smith Sunday.

source – ‘Senators may acquire another forward to push the ones already here’ – Bruce Garrioch – Ottawa Sun – 10/27/2019

Related: Senators Make Mistake Trading for Namestnikov

Maple Leafs to Clear Roster Space

Mark Zwolinski of the Toronto Star reports it will only be a matter of time before the Maple Leafs start making room for the return of sidelined winger Zach Hyman and defenseman Travis Dermott.

Toronto Maple Leafs Zach Hyman
Toronto Maple Leafs left wing Zach Hyman (THE CANADIAN PRESS/Frank Gunn)

Zwolinski writes:

General manager Kyle Dubas and his staff have been finding creative ways to open up cap space since last spring’s first-round playoff exit at the hands of the Boston Bruins, but will need more to make it add up in the near future.

source – ‘Zach Hyman and Travis Dermott are worth the price of readmission to Maple Leafs’ – Mark Zwolinski – The Toronto Star – 10/27/2019

Saying something has to give on the current roster, the scribe suggests trading winger Nic Petan or assigning Petan and defenseman Kevin Gravel to the Marlies as options. Or, players like Jason Spezza, Dmytro Timashov, and Nick Shore could be moved out.

Related: NHL Rumors: Bruins, Maple Leafs, Oilers, More

Will New Jersey Go After Raanta?

Larry Brooks of the New York Post believes the New Jersey Devils will be trying to find an upgrade over Cory Schneider and MacKenzie Blackwood in goal. He wonders if the Devils will look at Antti Raanta out of Arizona?

Phoenix Coyotes Antti Raanta
Phoenix Coyotes goalie Antti Raanta (Brad Rempel-USA TODAY Sports)

Raanta has a year remaining on his contract at $4.25 million per season and, while recovered from his injury, seems to be playing the backup role for the Coyotes.

Brooks writes:

Clearly, the front office has selected Kuemper as their goaltender of the (near) future. The question is whether the club is committed to presenting this formidable one-two in nets in an attempt to nail down the franchise’s first playoff spot since 2012, or whether GM John Chayka could be enticed to surrender Raanta.

Related: The Nurse Contract Extension: What Oilers Can Expect