Today’s NHL rumors mention that Oliver Ekman-Larsson could be a commercial candidate as part of the Vancouver Canucks’ mission to move money. How realistic is it that he could be moved?
Meanwhile, Filip Forsberg spoke to the media about his negotiations with the Nashville Predators. The Anaheim Ducks could consider a trade with Max Comtois, but does he want to leave? Finally, the Hart Trophy finalists were named.
Could Canucks try to trade Ekman-Larsson?
In trying to clarify Jeff Marek’s comments on the idea that the Canucks would use an offer sheet to improve their team, Sportsnet’s Elliotte Friedman hinted the team could seek to trade defender Oliver Ekman-Larsson in order to free up the money that would be required for such a move.
Speaking to Don Taylor and Rick Dhaliwal on CHEK TV, Friedman said he expects the Canucks to try to be aggressive this offseason and suggests they’ll look around to see if there’s a market for the 30-year-old defender there. He said, “I don’t know if the OEL thing is going to work … but I think the Canucks are trying to see if they could possibly do something there.”
Related: Should the Montreal Canadiens trade the first-overall pick?
The problem for the Canucks is that OEL has a no-move clause in his contract and getting him to Vancouver in the first place was a chore. He had the Canucks and Bruins on a limited shortlist when he was transferred from the Coyotes, and that deal fell through in the first offseason when it was attempted. If he doesn’t want to go anywhere, he won’t go anywhere. Not only that, he still has five years of contract costing the Canucks $7.26 million annually against the salary cap. Not many teams will want to adopt that.
Forsberg talks about wanting to stick with predators
According to NHL.com’s John Glennon, Filip Forsberg says he has no intention of leaving the Predators and upcoming UFA hopes to sign an extension with the team and return next season. Forsberg noted, “I’ve been saying that since day one: the goal is to get back here.” He admitted that the business side isn’t the same as the side on the ice and it’s a matter of waiting at this point.
When asked where things stand, he replied:
“I don’t want to give you too much information about the negotiations and such. But… there was progress up until the close and after that the teams were settled and obviously nothing was going to happen at that point. We just focused on playing well the rest of the season and playing well in the playoffs. I’m sure talks will move forward again and we’ll see what happens.”
Ducks considering Comtois trade?
According to The Athletic’s Eric Stephens, Max Comtois’ name has popped up in Anaheim trade rumors. In his disappointing 2021/22 season, some people are wondering if the 23-year-old winger could use a change of scenery. When asked if he thought he might need to move on, Comtois replied:
“The grass is greener nowhere. It’s up to you. I don’t really have a say in that. I have no (no-movement) clause. But I want to be here. I like this team. I like the lifestyle I have here. I know what I can bring to this team to make it successful that other guys on this team don’t have. For me, that’s one thing that’s important to me.”
Source – ‘Ducks Offseason: New Contracts, Jamie Drysdale Development, Coaching and More’ – Eric Stephens – The Athletic – 05/04/2022
Hart Trophy Finalists Announced: McDavid vs. Matthews?
There has been much debate over who should be considered, but Auston Matthews, Connor McDavid and Igor Shesterkin are the three finalists for the 2021-22 Hart Memorial Trophy. The trophy is “awarded to the player judged to be the most valuable to their team,” and there are people on all sides citing the reasons why.
Of course, there is talk of who has been removed from the list. After a season of 85 assists and 115 points, Jonathan Huberdeau was not a Hart Trophy finalist. Calgary Flames forward Johnny Gaudreau was also not included after scoring 40 goals and amassing 115 points.
The debate seems to boil down to whether a 60-goal season from Matthews or a 123-point season from McDavid is more impressive.
Jim Parsons is a senior freelance THW writer, part-time journalist, and audio/video host who lives, eats, sleeps, and breathes NHL news and rumor while also writing features about the Edmonton Oilers. He’s been a trusted source at The Hockey Writers for more than five years, but beyond that, his mission is to keep readers up to date with the latest NHL gossip and tech talk. Jim is a daily must-read for readers who want to be “in the loop.”
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