It’s time to start the work week with another fresh batch of NHL rumours. We’re starting the holiday season in style and teams are trying to give themselves important gifts. Those gifts can be players, cap space or draft picks. Some teams might be in a giving mood this Christmas season. Today’s NHL rumours focus on the Ottawa Senators, Dallas Stars and Vancouver Canucks.
All NHL rumours come from their original sources and are subject to change.
Rumour: Sportsnet reports that the Buffalo Sabres and Arizona Coyotes could be interested in recently waived goalie Matt Murray.
Ottawa Senators goaltender Matt Murray, winless this year at 0-5-0 with a 3.26 GAA and .890 save percentage, cleared waivers Sunday.https://t.co/sp6kMZ4WLM
— Sportsnet (@Sportsnet) November 28, 2021
Analysis: Murray cleared waivers on Sunday, but someone could still make a move for him. Both the Sabres and Coyotes could take a look at the former Stanley Cup champion netminder. Buffalo needs to fill the hole left by Craig Anderson, who may be out week-to-week with an upper-body injury.
Jeff Marek added on 32 Thoughts that getting Murray would help the Coyotes stay above the salary cap floor. Marek believes that Phil Kessel will be on the move and Arizona needs another hefty contract to keep them above the $60.25 million threshold. The Coyotes are in rebuilding mode, but wouldn’t mind a reclamation product like Murray.
The former Pittsburgh Penguins standout will report to AHL Belleville to try to reclaim his form. He has an 0-5-0 record with 3.26 goals-against-average and a .890 save percentage. If he bounces back in Belleville, he could drum up some interest from other teams.
Rumour: Marek also reported on 32 Thoughts that the Carolina Hurricanes reached out to the Stars about defenceman John Klingberg. However, Dallas isn’t interested in trading him at this point.
The Carolina Hurricanes have called the Dallas Stars regarding defenceman John Klingberg's trade availability, Sportsnet's @JeffMarek reported during 32 Thoughts on Hockey Night in Canada. https://t.co/6x7lty3lAQ
— Sportsnet (@Sportsnet) November 28, 2021
Analysis: The Swede is in the last year of his contract that pays him $4.25 million per season. Dallas might have some hard choices after locking down Miro Heiskanen to a long-term deal. Klingberg’s camp wants an extension close to what his teammate got. His representation said that Klingberg wants a deal “in the neighbourhood of an eight-year contract in the mid-60s.”
Carolina is a team that wants to make a big push for their second Stanley Cup in franchise history. The defence has gotten contributions from Anthony DeAngelo but would love to find a replacement for Dougie Hamilton. The Canes have been at or near the top of the Metropolitan Division and the Eastern Conference.
However, the Stars are still aiming for the post-season in their own right. Dallas was one point from the fourth-place Colorado Avalanche and Nashville Predators in the Central Division. The Stars still have plenty of time to get into contention, but teams will still call about Klingberg.
Rumour: David Pagnotta of The Fourth Period reported that many scouts watched Sunday’s game against the Boston Bruins. Seattle Kraken general manager Ron Francis and Minnesota Wild advisor Ray Shero were there.
Lots of 👀 watching tonight's Canucks/Bruins game. In addition to Shero (and a MIN scout) and Francis (and a SEA scout), there are reps on the list from TB, TOR, NYI, CHI, LA, DET, STL, OTT & FLA (Paul Fenton, Special Advisor to the GM) https://t.co/ffWxh3VWYq
— David Pagnotta (@TheFourthPeriod) November 29, 2021
Analysis: It’s no secret that changes are likely coming to the Canucks sooner rather than later. The rebuild is coming, so teams are going to take interest in pieces that will make them better. There may only be a few untouchable pieces like Elias Pettersson, Quinn Hughes and Thatcher Demko.
Teams like the New York Islanders and the St. Louis Blues may need reinforcements after being hit hard by COVID and injuries. Minnesota and the Florida teams are looking to add parts to make a deep playoff push. Seattle has financial flexibility after it didn’t do a lot of crazy spending during the expansion draft and free agency.
General manager Jim Benning has a lot of work to do to try to get picks and prospects to kickstart a rebuild. It’s going to be a long winter this year for Vancouver fans, but rebuilds often come with pain.