The NHL season has begun, and there are lots of moves being made still while each team figures out what is working and what isn’t for their roster. With lots of moving parts in the background, there are numerous NHL rumours as a result. Today we will be looking at rumours surrounding the Pittsburgh Penguins, Vancouver Canucks, and Chicago Blackhawks.
Rumour: According to Sean Gentille of The Athletic, there are a number of different possible candidates for the general manager position in Pittsburgh. He names people like Marc Bergevin, Jason Botterill, Peter Chiarelli, and Laurence Gillman to name a few. This comes after a surprise resignation from GM Jim Rutherford.
Analysis: There are quite a few names to digest which were suggested. Peter Chiarelli and Jason Botterill are less palatable options for the Penguins. Neither left their last team on a positive note. While Botterill is with the upcoming Seattle Kraken, and Chiarelli has taken a lesser role with the St. Louis Blues, both would likely jump at a chance to become a general manager again. The Penguins would really need to be wowed by these two to consider them based on past performances.
Marc Bergevin still has a year left on his deal in Montreal, however, Gentille suggests that the connection to Mario Lemieux would help. Bergevin has definitely increased his reputation in recent years around the league after making some good trades and good signings. His addition to the Penguins would be a strong one, as a proven GM taking his team on the upswing is always an attractive option.
Finally, Lawrence Gilman is suggested as an option. As the assistant GM in Toronto to Kyle Dubas, Gilman has had plenty of experience, also being assistant GM in Vancouver. Between jobs, Gilman even helped design the 2017 Vegas Golden Knights expansion draft, and, in turn, the 2021 Seattle expansion draft. Gilman has yet to hold a GM position, however, he could be a great option if given the chance.
Rumour: According to Bik Nizzar and Jamie Dodd of Sportsnet, the Vancouver Canucks could potentially look at acquiring St. Louis Blues defenceman Vince Dunn.
Analysis: Vince Dunn is an exceptional young defenceman. The Canucks should be clambering at the chance to acquire such a player. While he is a great up and coming defenceman, the cost has been rumoured to be a first-round pick. This is a steep price, especially considering the rough start for the Canucks. With the Canucks having given up their first-round pick in 2020 in the J.T. Miller trade, this would leave them without a pick in two straight years.
If the Canucks are able to see a turnaround without a trade and are confident they can make the playoffs in their seven-team division, then acquiring Dunn could be a fantastic move to make. This would add an excellent young defenceman to their young core.
Rumour: According to Scott King of NBC, the core 4 have a desire to remain in Chicago.
Analysis: Patrick Kane, Jonathan Toews, Duncan Keith, and Brent Seabrook have all stated they would like to remain in Chicago. These were all key players in the three Stanley Cups they won in 2010, 2013, and 2015. While they were all key pieces in the past, they have not provided the team with the same value.
This may indicate that, even if Chicago wants to move on from this core, they can’t. Each of the four players has a no-movement clause guaranteed in their contract and cannot be relocated, whether it be via trade or to the minors, without their permission. This could indicate that the shape of this team is largely dictated by the players moving forward until their contracts expire.
Either this or when things get bad enough that they ask to be traded. While they aren’t all terrible players by any means, none of them are providing the value of their contract. For the Blackhawks to compete again, it seems they need to move on from their old core.
This concludes today’s NHL rumours!
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