NHL Rumours: Philadelphia Flyers, Dallas Stars & Montreal Canadiens

NHL Rumours
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This week has come to a close, bringing us nearer to the draft and free agency. As always this provokes the NHL rumours mill to fire up and today was no different, with the Dallas Stars and Montreal Canadiens all linked with fresh faces. Additionally, the revolving door of coaches begins and one team who is on the lookout for a new leader, the Philadephia Flyers, made headlines in this edition of NHL rumours.

All NHL Rumours are subject to change and come from the original source.

NHL Rumours

Philadelphia Flyers

Rumour: Per Frank Seravalli of DailyFaceoff, the Philadelphia Flyers have their final two choices for the head coach role

Analysis: Following a dismal start to the season, Philadelphia parted ways with Alain Vigneault on 7th December. Since then, they have been doing their homework for the perfect hire. Multiple big name coaches were linked to the vacant spot behind the bench, most recently Bruce Cassidy, who was just fired by the Boston Bruins. However, it seems Barry Trotz and John Tortorella have impressed the most.

Trotz was most recently with the New York Islanders unitl May, when the Isles failed to make the playoffs. However, his previous work speaks for itself, which includes a Stanley Cup win with the Washington Capitals. Undoubtedly, he is a strong choice but one concern is availability. The 59-year-old has been strongly linked to the vacant Winnipeg Jets posistion as he wishes to remain close to his family in Manitoba. As such, the Flyers may prefer their other candidate.

Tortorella, known for his strong willed and no-nonsense form of coaching, would be an interesting choice considering his previous tenure with the New York Rangers. He is however, the second most winningest American in NHL coaching history and won a Stanley Cup with the Tampa Bay Lightning, credentials which impress any fanbase and locker room. Most recently, ‘Torts’ was head coach of the Columbus Blue Jackets. He left upon expiration of his contract as the first coach to lead the franchise to a play-off win and with the most wins in Columbus’ history.

Dallas Stars

Rumour: Marco D’Amico of Montreal Hockey Now has speculated that the Dallas Stars make be interested in acquiring Jeff Petry

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Analysis: One of the top free-agents this summer is Dallas defenceman John Klingberg. Last season Klingberg confirmed he was open to a trade, but the deadline passed and the Swede remained in the Lone Star State. As such, he in all likelihood will be testing free agency, leaving the Stars short of a right-handed defenceman.

Montreal have made no secret  that they want to part ways with Petry. However, the team which will take him is less clear and at the recent trade deadline, Petry remained in Quebec. However, speculation has now heated up again after Stars general manager Jim Nill confirmed the right-side of defence was something they are ‘looking to address that in the offseason’.

In terms of what a trade would look like, the Michigan native does have a hefty cap hit. Therefore, Dallas would likely ask Montreal to retain some salary. If agreed to, Petry may be available for a mid-tier prospect and a more senior NHL player. Goalie Anton Khudobin could be said senior player. He has been used sparingly in Dallas but could provide a reasonably priced back-up option in goal behind Carey Price.

Montreal Canadiens

Rumour: Jimmy Murphy of Montreal Hockey Now has suggested the Canadiens may have interest in Jesse Puljujärvi

Analysis: Following the aftermath of being swept in the Western Conference Final, the Edmonton Oilers reflected on their current roster and the strides made. However, there were some interesting comments regarding Puljujärvi’s future. The Finn is a restricted free agent and Edmonton face a qualifying offer of $1.41 million and arbitration rights to retain him. The other options are losing him as a free agent or trading his rights. Based on general manager Ken Holland’s comments, the latter is a strong possibility.

Puljujärvi had his ups and downs last season, but has proven himself to be a useful middle-six tool. The big winger is fast and skillful, plus carries a high ceiling, which would definitely appeal to the Canadiens. As such, it is easy to see why a ready-made replacement would be the preferred return. If this is Edmonton’s stance, Montreal might be able to change their mind. This is because the 2022 Draft sees the Habs pick 8 times in the first three rounds of the draft.

It is also safe to say that Puljujärvi is not worth a first. That takes those picks are already off the table. What could be appealing is the Oilers’ second rounder, which the Habs acquired in the Brett Kulak trade. If they acquire this as part of a Puljujärvi trade, there is the possibility to use as a trade chip for a NHL-ready replacement.

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