In today’s NHL rumors rundown, the Boston Bruins don’t appear to be in a situation to currently push for either Mark Scheifele or Elias Lindholm. If they still have interest in either player, what’s the play? Meanwhile, where do both Lindholm and Scheifele sit with their respective teams? Finally, the staff at The Athletic asked members of each of their teams to pick a trade candidate for this season, and below are some of the more interesting names that came up.
Something Has to Give With Flames and Lindholm
Elias Lindholm spoke with the media this week and it was clear he was frustrated with questions about his contract status with the Calgary Flames and why a deal wasn’t done yet. He said he was willing to stay and has let the organization know where he stands, he’s not waiting it out like Noah Hanifin or Mikael Backlund.
Julian McKenzie writes:
If Wednesday’s press availability was any indication, something is going to have to give when it comes to Lindholm. His camp seems to be standing firm on the 2024 unrestricted free agent’s asking price on an extension, and he probably would’ve liked for a new deal to have been resolved sooner. If it gets to a point where both sides can’t come to an agreement, Flames general manager Craig Conroy can’t let the situation linger.source – ‘Which NHL players could be traded in 2023-24? Our experts pick one from all 32 teams’ – Julian McKenzie – The Athletic – 09/16/2023
Blackhawks Could Showcase Tyler Johnson
Scott Powers writes that among the Blackhawks’ impending free agents, Tyler Johnson stands out as a particularly captivating player. Should he maintain strong performance levels, and if the team is open to shouldering half of his $5 million cap hit, it’s possible that a Stanley Cup contender might express interest in acquiring this seasoned veteran during the trade deadline.
Latest News & Highlights
Furthermore, there’s the intriguing possibility that Johnson could share the ice with Connor Bedard this season, which could further enhance his performance. If he shows well early, more teams will be interested, and depending on where the Blackhawks are at in their season, they could try and sell high on the player.
Who Goes for the Red Wings, Perron or Gostisbehere?
Max Bultman says it’s down to two names in Detroit where either Shayne Gostisbehere or David Perron are the likeliest trade candidates. He believes Perron might garner more attention due to his playoff-style play, but Gostisbehere occupies a position with more competition on the Detroit roster, making him a likelier candidate for a trade.
Sign up for our Daily NHL News & Rumors Substack newsletter
Perron has a $4.75 million cap hit, whereas Gostisbehere comes in at $4.125. Neither player likely fetches the Red Wings a really high draft pick, so a trade will probably depend on where the team is at in the standings.
Is It An All or None Situation in Winnipeg?
Murat Ates called Mark Scheifele the most likely player to be traded, but seemed to hint that if Scheifele is moved, so is Connor Hellebuyck. Noting that the team has asked both players to consider the other when making a decision, it’s likely either both stay or both go.
Winnipeg has seven pending unrestricted free agents — Mark Scheifele, Connor Hellebuyck, Nino Niederreiter, Brenden Dillon, Dylan DeMelo, Laurent Brossoit and Jansen Harkins — who are at various levels of career crossroads. Kevin Cheveldayoff says he’ll ask Hellebuyck and Scheifele to consider their futures “on parallel tracks,” and the truth is Winnipeg could sign (or be forced to trade) both of them, depending on how negotiations play out. Still, if the Jets move one and only one of these top players, I’m guessing it’s Scheifele.
The Bruins Have Checked in Both Lindholm and Scheifele
Having mentioned these two names above, it makes sense to talk about the Boston Bruins who have been closely linked to both players in trade rumors all summer. Boston Hockey Now’s Jimmy Murphy writes his sources confirmed general manager Don Sweeney had conducted his due diligence on the trade cost of Lindholm as well as Flames defenseman Noah Hanifin.
Meanwhile, Fluto Shinzawa of The Athletic notes that even if there is still interest in Lindholm or Scheifele, the Bruins will have to wait until later in the season to try and make a push for either player. He writes that, by using the Bo Horvat trade as a comparable, the Bruins are short on the commodities required for acquiring either Scheifele or Lindholm.
He suggests, instead, that the Bruins go after one of those two players in free agency. He explains that if they let Jake DeBrusk, Derek Forbort, A.J. Greer, Matt Grzelcyk, Milan Lucic, James van Riemsdyk, Kevin Shattenkirk and Jakub Zboril walk as unrestricted free agency, they’ll have over $19 million to spend. He writes:
That would still leave enough for the Bruins to chase Scheifele or Lindholm in free agency, assuming one or both remain unrestricted. They would have plenty of cash to do so. This way, they would only have to pay once, so to speak, instead of trading assets then signing one of the centers to a long-term extension.