We’re closing in on the All-Star Break and the NHL rumours are starting to pick up steam. Teams are going to use the All-Star Break to take stock of what they have and assess team needs. Injuries have forced some teams back onto the market or to go after multiple targets. Some general manager are trying to give players a fresh start in a new location. Today’s NHL rumours focus on the New York Rangers and the Edmonton Oilers.
All NHL rumours come from the original source and are subject to change.
New York Rangers
Rumour: Sportsnet’s Elliotte Friedman said the Rangers will have maybe acquire more than one centre with the injury to Filip Chytil. A name that’s popped up is Montreal Canadiens forward Sean Monahan.
Saturday Headlines/32: Hockey Canada, Monahan & NYR (?), OTT & Tanev:https://t.co/NQ5qyeYqbp
— Elliotte Friedman (@FriedgeHNIC) January 28, 2024
Analysis: The Chytil injury is a big blow for a team that was flying high to start the season. Chytil was a solid second-line centre and he clicked with multiple different forwards. However, ongoing injuries have shut down the young Czech forward for the rest of the 2023-24 season.
The Rangers were already in the market to add some more depth down the middle. However, the injury to Chytil may force general manager Chris Drury to make more than one move. Centre depth is crucial in the Stanley Cup Playoffs and was a problem last year against the New Jersey Devils.
Friedman mentioned Monahan’s name Saturday night’s Headlines segment on Hockey Night in Canada. Monahan comes at a very low cap hit of $1.985 million and is very respected around the league.
Montreal general manager Kent Hughes that he has a lot of teams asking about Monahan and he can wait for a good trade package. Could the Brampton, Ontario native get a second or even a first-round pick at the deadline? Players like Monahan could draw a nice haul for Hughes that get the Habs some picks, players or a combination of both. Hughes seems to have the hammer and could make Drury or other general managers pay up.
Rumour: The Athletic’s Chris Johnston and Harman Dayal composed a list of 10 young players that could do with a change of scenery. One of those players is young Oilers’ defenceman Phillip Broberg.
We already know who the big name trade targets are.
— Harman Dayal (@harmandayal2) January 23, 2024
Analysis: Broberg screams like the prototype of an NHL defenceman at 6-foot, 4-inches tall. The former eighth overall selection of the 2019 NHL Draft has been stuck at AHL Bakersfield waiting for an opportunity. Broberg has done everything asked of him in the minors and has put up great numbers while eating up a lot minutes. However, there seems to be no path forward for him to make the big club.
This could mean that general manager Ken Holland could use the young Swede as a trade chip. Edmonton has burst back onto the scene as a Stanley Cup contender. Holland may be tempted to push all of his chips in the middle and shore up his lineup for a big drive to a title. A prospect like Broberg could be used as trade bait to land another current asset.
According to The Athletic article, “Broberg has only started to scratch the surface of what he can be as an NHLer — averaging 12:36 across his 79 career games at that level — but projects out as a minute-munching, all-situations defender in the future.” He’s got all the tools to succeed at the NHL level, but he just needs a place to get that opportunity. A team would do well to ask for Broberg if the Oilers come calling looking for a current NHL player. The young Swede just needs a chance to crack a lineup somewhere.
Main photo by: Eric Bolte – USA TODAY Sports