By: George Potter
Now that the NHL season is over, trade rumors have been on the minds of hockey fans and sports analysts alike. This year is probably interesting now that the Seattle Kraken is now officially the 32nd franchise of the NHL and is able to make moves such as trading, and signing players. Despite the fact they are only rumors there are many big names that might possibly be on a different team for the 2021-22 NHL season. Here are some of the possible trade rumors that could possibly happen this offseason.
Jack Eichel Leaving Buffalo?
Jack Eichel, the Captain of the Buffalo Sabres, has struggled to find success with the franchise. This year, despite the Sabres looking good on paper with Taylor Hall, Eric Staal, Jeff Skinner, and Dylan Cozens being a part of the team's offense, the team looked to be at its lowest point yet. The Sabres had a record of 15-34-7 and had no choice but to trade Taylor Hall and Eric Staal to playoff contenders at the deadline. Since being drafted in 2015, Jack Eichel and the Sabres have yet to make the playoffs.
In all honesty no matter where Eichel goes, if the Sabres trade him, it will not be good for the franchise. Especially since Sam Reinhart and Rasmus Ristolainen have both been traded out of Buffalo recently.
Despite the heated topic of where Eichel will go, due to his big contract, it will be challenging to move him. The Hockey News writer Ryan Kennedy tweeted about a possible deal to the Vegas Golden Knights. The trade involves Eichel for Payton Krebs, Nic Hauge, Reilly Smith, and a first round pick.
If this rumor turns out to be true, the Vegas Golden knights without a doubt will have one of the strongest offenses in the league. The only concern is what exactly will Buffalo get out of this trade, this will be an interesting discussion.
Vladimir Taresenko wants out from St. Louis
Russian born forward Vladimir Taresenko has been a key part for the St. Louis Blues and their Stanley cup victory in 2019. However, according to the Athletic, Tarasenko had shockingly requested a trade in the early offseason by communicating to Blues general manager Doug Armstrong. Analyzed by the Bleacher Report This could be because of how Tarasenko’s shoulder injury was mishandled and his disappointment of not being the team's 23rd captain.
According to Lyle Richardson of the Bleacher Report With two more years on his contract that is currently worth $7.5 million dollars it could possibly be extremely challenging to move him especially with his injury.
He was unprotected in the recent Seattle Expansion draft which made many speculate that Ron Francis could potentially choose the Russian forward to help the offense. However, Seattle passed on him and chose Blues defenseman Vince Dunn instead of Tarensnko.
Many analysts from multiple sports media outlets have some speculation that the New York Rangers could possibly pick him up sometime this offseason. The Rangers have had a fair bit of struggles with both offense and defense this past season.
According to Lyle Richardson form the Bleacher Report the Rangers are in desperate need for a key player on the right wing side of the ice. Especially how Rangers star forward Pavel Buchnevich was traded to the blues for Forward Sammy Blais and for a 2022 second round pick. In addition, the Rangers have bought out defenseman Tony Deanlgelo’s 4.8 million dollar contract which will undoubtably help their cap struggles.
This trade could possibly be a good fit for the Russian forward as he could have potential to help with the blue shirts offence.
Who will leave the Calgary Flames next?
Trade Rumors have been very present in the city of Calgary on what will happen for the Flames in the future. Recently Flames veteran defenseman and captain Mark Giordarno was selected in the Seattle Expansion Draft. Many were somewhat shocked as Milan Lucic agreed to waive his contact for the Expansion draft leaving himself unprotected. Many people speculate whether Monohan, Gaudreau, or Tkachuk might possibly be going somewhere else sooner rather than later. The thing is, only time will tell what will happen in Calgary and who will leave or stay.
In all honesty the Flames have struggled with being consistent this season which gives many Calgary fans worries over what the future may hold for the team, despite making playoffs in 2019 and 2020. Now that their 2019 Norris Trophy winning captain, Mark Girodarno, is gone the Flames are in desperate need for leadership roles.
Most importantly, The Flames have shown a lack of consistency through defense and goaltending. Now that free agency has begun, it is vital that the Flames make some moves to strengthen this aspect of their team whether it be signing or trading players.
“We have to make changes” said Brad Trelleving quoted in the Calgary Sun
The first move of the offseason was a trade between the brand new franchise the Seattle Kraken by getting fromer Coyotes forward Tyler Pitlick for a 4th round pick in the 2022.
The speculation has been Flames star Forward Johnny Gaudreau. Gaudreau was able to lead the Flames in points in the 2018-19 season scoring 99 points in 82 regular season games. However, he had a disappointing performance in round one against the Colorado Avalanche by only scoring one point.
When asked about the possibility of signing an extension with the Flames, Gaudreau had no intentions of leaving Calgary for good.
“I love the city and I don't think I've ever once said I don't want to be here. If that comes up this summer, I would be willing to do that and get it done.” said Gaudreau.
TSN Insider Pierre Leburn had recently tweeted that there is a chance for five teams to have a chance to pick up Gaudreau that involves a no move clause.
Whatever happens about this will be a very interesting offseason not only for Johnny Gaudreau but for the Calgary Flames.