It’s Monday and the Last Word on Hockey is here with another dose of NHL trade rumours. We gather a group of three or four rumours and try to make sense of them. The NHL trade deadline is under a month away on Feb. 25, so these rumours will heat up as we get closer to the date. Today we talk about the Columbus Blue Jackets, Nashville Predators and San Jose Sharks.
We gather all rumours at the original source and are subject to change.
Columbus Blue Jackets
Rumour: The Athletic’s Aaron Portzline reports that Artemi Panarin’s agent Dan Millstein wants another meeting before he informs the Blue Jackets of his willingness to re-sign. The parties met in Miami, but would like a second meeting.
Artemi Panarin’s agent, Daniel Milstein, said he wants another meeting with his client before he informs #CBJ of Panarin’s willingness to negotiate a contract w Blue Jackets. The two met over the weekend in Miami, but a second meeting now is necessary.
— Aaron Portzline (@Aportzline) January 27, 2019
Analysis: Columbus desperately wants to lock in Panarin for a long-term deal. However, the Russian forward has always wanted to play in a large market like New York, Los Angeles or one of the Florida teams. The Blue Jackets are also uncertain on what to do about goalie Sergei Bobrovsky.
Columbus sits in one of the Eastern Conference playoff spots, but it wants to get something in return for their star players. This meeting could boil down to a “take-it-or-leave-it” scenario for Panarin.
Rumour: Bob McKenzie was on TSN 1290 in Winnipeg and he said the Nashville Predators could be very active at the deadline. General manager David Poile could be willing to sacrifice the future for an “all-in” type gamble.
Analysis: Poile has been one of the game’s most decorated executives, but does not have a Stanley Cup. The Predators reached the final two seasons ago before losing to the Pittsburgh Penguins. Nashville took the President’s Trophy last year before the Winnipeg Jets spoiled the party.
Could players like Kevin Fiala, Dante Fabbro and other youngsters be on the trade block to help the Predators nab that elusive title? Poile is one of the smarter traders in the league and it’s possible he can make a blockbuster deal.
San Jose Sharks
Rumour: Kevin Kurz of The Athletic Bay Area says don’t be surprised if the Sharks and the New Jersey Devils become trade partners at the deadline. He specifically mentioned Marcus Johansson, Brian Boyle and Keith Kinkaid.
Keep your eye on the New Jersey Devils as a potential trade partner for the #SJSharks. Marcus Johansson, Brian Boyle, or even goalie Keith Kinkaid could be targets. All are pending UFAs and would presumably be rentals
— Kevin Kurz (@KKurzNHL) January 27, 2019
Analysis: All three of those Devils are impending unrestricted free agents at the end of the season. It would make sense for New Jersey general manager Ray Shero to try and get something for any of these players. San Jose is another club that has desires on winning a Stanley Cup. Doug Wilson will likely be another active general manager at the deadline.
Anyone of these three Devils’ players would be useful for the Sharks’ playoff push.
COLUMBUS, OH – DECEMBER 28: Artemi Panarin #9 of the Columbus Blue Jackets skates the puck away from Par Lindholm #26 of the Toronto Maple Leafs during the game on December 28, 2018 at Nationwide Arena in Columbus, Ohio. (Photo by Kirk Irwin/Getty Images)
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