Rumor Roundup: Maple Leafs, Wild not carried out dealing, Panthers’ Hoffman could possibly be commerce bait

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The Maple Leafs and Wild had been entrance and middle in two pre-deadline trades, and it won’t be the final we hear from both crew earlier than the freeze. In the meantime, the Jets’ Kyle Connor has entered the rumor mill and the Panthers may transfer Mike Hoffman for blueline assist.Mike Hoffman|Eliot J. Schechter/NHLI by way of Getty ImagesThe Toronto Maple Leafs lastly took motion final week to deal with their goaltending depth, buying Jack Campbell (together with winger Kyle Clifford) from the Los Angeles Kings. On Monday, the Minnesota Wild shipped proper winger Jason Zucker to the Pittsburgh Penguins for Alex Galchenyuk, a conditional 2020 first-round decide and protection prospect Calen Addison.
With the Feb. 24 commerce deadline lower than two weeks away, extra strikes could possibly be in retailer for the Leafs and Wild.
Toronto GM Kyle Dubas indicated final week he’s awaiting updates on the standing of sidelined defensemen Morgan Rielly and Cody Ceci earlier than deciding his subsequent plan of action. If Rielly, Ceci and injured winger Ilya Mikheyev stay on long-term injured reserve till the playoffs, TSN’s Frank Seravalli reported it will unencumber greater than $9 million in cap house for the Leafs. Dubas may bolster his blueline with out liberating up cap house when these sidelined gamers return as a result of there’s no wage cap within the post-season. That may additionally present the Leafs with extra NHL-seasoned depth for the playoffs.
Seravalli noticed it will be much like the Chicago Blackhawks putting winger Patrick Kane on LTIR late within the 2014-15 season, utilizing the financial savings to accumulate Antoine Vermette and Kimmo Timonen on the 2015 commerce deadline. They helped the Blackhawks win the Stanley Cup later that spring.
In the meantime, The Pioneer Press’ Dane Mizutani studies Wild GM Invoice Guerin indicated every other strikes on his half earlier than the deadline trusted his membership’s efficiency. He nonetheless believes they’ll safe a playoff berth. “If there’s give up, there will probably be extra trades,” mentioned Guerin.
Matt Dumba and Jonas Brodin could possibly be subsequent on the commerce block. TSN’s Pierre LeBrun studies Guerin is prepared to take heed to presents for the defensemen and is available in the market for a first-line middle. If the most effective supply the Wild get is a second-line middle, LeBrun believes one thing else should be included within the deal.
AVALANCHE EYEING CONNOR?Now in his third full NHL season, Kyle Connor is blossoming into an offensive star in his personal proper, main the Winnipeg Jets with 28 objectives and tied for the membership factors lead (59) with Mark Scheifele.
One would contemplate Connor among the many Jets’ untouchables. Nonetheless, a current report from the Winnipeg Free Press’ Mike McIntyre steered the Colorado Avalanche could possibly be among the many groups attempting to accumulate the 23-year-old winger. Citing a “well-connected supply,” McIntyre mentioned Avalanche prospect defenseman Bowen Byram was the principle identify linked to Connor, together with two different smaller items. Nonetheless, McIntyre doubted the Jets will transfer the winger and doesn’t consider they’re actively purchasing him.
Shifting a participant of Connor’s caliber would fetch a much-needed top-tier defenseman. Byram could possibly be that blueliner in the future, however he’s but to make his NHL debut. If the Jets had been to maneuver Connor this season – they usually received’t – it will be for instant assistance on the blueline.
PANTHERS LOOKING TO FLIP HOFFMAN FOR BLUELINE HELP?The Florida Panthers are in a battle for a playoff berth within the Atlantic Division. A current four-game winless skid despatched them sliding into fourth place they usually stay exterior the ultimate wild-card spot within the Japanese Convention.
Panthers GM Dale Tallon final week indicated he’s available in the market for an skilled defenseman to pair with Aaron Ekblad. Tallon felt he wants extra consistency on his blueline. CapFriendly signifies the Panthers have little greater than $141,000 in commerce deadline cap house. Touchdown a top quality associate for Ekblad may imply a dollar-in, dollar-out transfer.
TSN’s Pierre LeBrun reported groups had been making inquiries about Panthers winger Mike Hoffman. LeBrun felt it will take a defenseman to entice Tallon to half with the 30-year-old winger. With 21 objectives and 45 factors, Hoffman’s on tempo to exceed 30 objectives and 65 factors. He’s additionally an unrestricted free agent this summer season and will search an enormous elevate over his present $5.187-million salary-cap hit.
Nonetheless, Hoffman could possibly be engaging to a membership carrying blueline depth looking for a scoring winger. Sportsnet’s Elliotte Friedman thinks Hoffman could be a superb fallback for the St. Louis Blues in the event that they fail to pry Chris Kreider away from the New York Rangers. 
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Tags: winnipeg jets, florida panthers, minnesota wild, rumor roundup, toronto maple leafs, st. louis blues, colorado avalancheAbout the AuthorLyle RichardsonLyle Richardson is a contributing author to THN. His Rumor Roundup has been an everyday characteristic since 2007. He additionally runs the web site spectorshockey.internet. A Canadiens fan married to a Leafs fan, Lyle’s Saturday nights throughout hockey season can get fairly entertaining at his dwelling.

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