We’re into the dog days of the NHL off-season, when most of the moves that will happen, have happened. There are still some NHL rumours circulating out there, however. Rumours are still constant around the league. Today we will be looking at rumours that involve the Toronto Maple Leafs, the Minnesota Wild and Alex Ovechkin of the Washington Capitals.
Toronto Maple Leafs
Analysis: Early this off-season, it was leaked that the Hurricanes had potentially inquired about goaltender Frederik Andersen and that they could be in trade talks. The Hurricanes always seem to be in on goaltenders, so it made sense from their end. However, Dubas remarked that he was unhappy about the rumours being out there. According to Chris Johnston the Leafs believe the Hurricanes are leaking their trade talks.
It is very likely that the rumour being leaked had nothing to do with the trade talks falling through. However, doing such things can build ill will between teams. It doesn’t seem like it will stand in the way of these two teams, though. The Hurricanes could still use a goaltender as an upgrade, and Andersen still will be difficult for the Leafs to keep, but it seems these talks have halted.
Rumour: According to Michael Russo, unless the Wild are willing to take less, a Matt Dumba trade is unlikely to happen.
🚨MEATY #mnwild notebook🚨
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🏒 Matt Dumba trade talk update
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🏒MN-based Wild players skating
🏒Wild world junior hopefuls https://t.co/Wcsbb79L7H
— Michael Russo (@RussoHockey) November 5, 2020
Analysis: The Wild were looking for a top 6 centre for Dumba. That is unlikely to happen at this point in time according to Russo. Dumba is part of a very deep defence core and is arguably the #4 defenceman on the Wild. It makes sense that they are looking to address an area of need from an area of strength. However, in the current trade market, it doesn’t look like the Wild will get that value. They could take a lesser package or take futures, which could make sense if Minnesota looks to retool.
It makes sense for Minnesota to hold onto Dumba at this point in time. If he is able to put together a good 2020-21 campaign for the Wild then they can look to get a top 6 centre at the deadline or next off-season. If Dumba is able to stay healthy and can get continue to get powerplay time, then that could raise his trade value even further. Waiting for the season to begin to leverage the market as injuries begin to roll in for teams could also benefit the Wild.
The Wild are severely lacking at centre, especially after dealing Eric Staal to the Sabres, so holding out makes sense. If they are able to flip Dumba for a similar quality player at that position, then the Wild should wait for that trade to become available.
Rumour: In an interview, Alex Ovechkin stated that he wants to end his hockey career with Dynamo Moskow.
Alex Ovechkin shares where he wants to end his hockey career, and it's not with the Caps. 👀
— BarDown (@BarDown) November 5, 2020
Analysis: With contract talks looming, Alex Ovechkin is looking to the future. He has said that he will look to end his hockey career where it began. This is not an imminent thing for Ovechkin, as he still feels like he has multiple years at the NHL level in him. Ovechkin still believes he is in the prime of his NHL career.
Ovechkin will almost certainly re-sign with the Capitals, and when he reaches an older age he will return to the KHL to play out his career. Moskow should be ecstatic at this new, as not only has one of the best players of this generation said he will be playing the last year of hockey with them, but also the merchandising opportunities that come with such a big name.
This is not uncommon for a lot of the bigger Russian stars. We have seen this with Pavel Datsyuk, or Ilya Kovalchuk before he made a second NHL stint. This is just confirming something that people would have begun to infer as Ovechkin began to grow closer to 40 and his career began to wind down.
This concludes the NHL rumours for today!