NHL Rumours: Vancouver Canucks, New York Islanders, Pittsburgh Penguins

NHL Rumours

Welcome to the Friday edition of NHL Rumours! Hope everyone in the United States enjoyed their Thanksgiving. Usually, the quarter mark around Thanksgiving is when teams fall into playoff position. This year was a little different with the season starting a week later. However, that does not mean teams are not looking to make improvements as they try to climb their way back up into playoff contention. In today’s edition of NHL Rumours, we look at the Vancouver Canucks, New York Islanders, and Pittsburgh Penguins

NHL Rumours

Vancouver Canucks

Rumour: According to the Fourth Period, the Minnesota Wild have an interest in Vancouver Canucks forward J.T. Miller

Analysis: The Canucks are struggling and changes are on the horizon. While the organization does not want to do anything drastic, general manager Jim Benning has to do something to shake things up a little bit. The moves Benning made in the offseason have not worked out especially on defence. So the Canucks are looking to improve their along with adding a bottom-six forward. In order to get something, the Canucks have to give something up. That something could be Miller. And one team that is interested in Miller is the Wild.

Now while Miller’s agent has denied the interest, the Wild are a good fit for Miller and the Canucks should the two teams start negotiations. The Wild has several defencemen that could be moved. Kevin Fiala and Jordan Greenway are the reported names that could be a part of this deal. Ideally, if the Canucks were to move Miller, they would look for something that could help them salvage this season instead of something that will help for seasons to come.

New York Islanders

Rumour: According to Elliotte Friedman on the Jeff Marek Show, the New York Islanders are looking to improve their defence by adding a young defenceman with some term.

Analysis: Look it is no secret the Islanders defence is bad. Not only that it is slow especially with the addition of Zdeno Chara on the back end. Injuries to their defence are not helping. Ryan Pulock is out for up to six weeks, Both Andy Greene and Chara are on the COVID-19 protocol list and they do not have the depth they did from a year ago. The salary cap has really hurt the Islanders and their ability to keep players. First, it was Devon Toews followed by Nick Leddy. And the Islanders have not found a suitable replacement for Leddy. It is all well and good to have a shutdown pair of Adam Pelech and Pulock, but it does them no good when the rest of the pairings can not be mobile enough.

Noah Dobson really took a step back this season. The Islanders have looked internally at Robin Salo, but general manager Lou Lamoriello is looking outside of the organization for help. For weeks, we have talked about the Islanders adding a defenceman. Now young mobile defencemen are hard to come by, but the Islanders have salary cap space now after moving out some contracts. A player the Islanders could go after is Samuel Girard from Colorado. The Islanders might have enough at the forward position in their system to get Girard. Or do they go with a cheaper option? One thing is for sure Lamoriello will not sit ideally while his team struggles.

Pittsburgh Penguins

Rumour: Dan Rosen of NHL.com was asked in a recent mailbag about the Pittsburgh Penguins and suggest Marc-Andre Fleury as a good backup option. 

Analysis: The Penguins were off to a rocky start this season. Besides injuries and some COVID-19 issues, the Penguins goaltenders have not been very good. And they need a suitable backup option if they want to make a push up the standings in a tough Metro Division. Tristan Jarry is playing better as of late, but Casey DeSmith is not cutting it. Fleury is a perfect option to be the backup. Not to mention his career would come full circle finishing in a Penguins uniform. For all parties involved, that is the perfect scenario.

However, the Penguins have to be smart about doing this trade. IF the Penguins want to resolve their backup they will try to trade for Fleury right away. A caveat of the deal will be Chicago retaining some salary. However, they will have to trade a player or two in return for example a goalie like DeSmith to fit under the cap. The Penguins could also wait until the trade deadline to see where they are in the playoff race. If the Penguins are close, do not be surprised if the Penguins try to get Fleury back and his cap hit will be less.

That does it for this edition of NHL Rumours stay tuned for another edition coming soon.

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