We’re closing in on Christmas Day and we’ve got some more NHL rumours for you. There aren’t a lot of shopping days left before the big day. However, general managers around the league have a little more time to get their shopping done. There are some teams that are trying to offload players to clear out some salary cap space. Other clubs are trying to add pieces or make deals to lock in some of their players. Today’s NHL rumours focus on the Vancouver Canucks and the Anaheim Ducks.
All NHL rumours come from the original source and are subject to change.
Rumour: Rick Dhaliwal and Don Taylor on the Donnie and Dhali Show discussed if Nikita Zadorov will be getting re-signed by the Canucks.
“Term is going to big for his agent Dan Milstein..”@DonTaylor5 and @DhaliwalSports talked about what Nikita Zadorov has brought to the #Canucks and what a contract extension might look like. pic.twitter.com/AmuuEif5dw
— Donnie & Dhali (@DonnieandDhali) December 18, 2023
Analysis: Zadorov has already endeared himself to the Canucks’ faithful and made a good impression already. However, the Russian blueliner is an unrestricted free agent at the end of the season. The 28-year-old blueliner is in the final year of a contract that sees him making $3.75 million per season. Zadorov has been making in the $3-4 million range in his last couple of contracts.
The Russian defenceman is represented by Dan Milstein and he’s an agent that’s big on getting his clients lengthy deals. One wonders how that is going to fit into the vision of Vancouver general manager Patrik Allvin. Zadorov has a built-in advantage as he’s a young defender that’s ready to hit the open market. Most blueliners that hit the free agent market are in their 30s. Milsten tweeted out a money sign earlier in the season after Zadorov had another solid home game.
There’s plenty of time to get a deal done between the two sides. Vancouver seemingly made the right call in trading for the former Calgary Flames defenceman. He’s already making himself a force on the backend and that is going to lead him to a payday from the Canucks or another team that will want his services.
Rumour: Elliotte Friedman and Jeff Marek on the 32 Thoughts podcast talked about how Adam Henrique may become a commodity for a contender at the trade deadline.
Analysis: Henrique put his name out there in a big way after getting a hat trick against his old team, the New Jersey Devils. John Gibson is the name that many insiders are coveting at the deadline. However, Henrique will likely draw some interest.
The veteran forward is in the final year of a deal that sees him make $5.825 million. However, he does have a 10-team no-trade list and can pretty much dictate where he wants to go. The 33-year-old did post on social media that he has always loved playing in New Jersey. One wonders if a reunion could be in order for a team that’s loading up for a deep Stanley Cup Playoff run.
The Brantford, Ontario native has been a 20-goal scorer for a number of seasons in his NHL career. He’ll likely not be a top six forward, but he would be a good depth forward for a contending club. Henrique has plenty of experience, but hasn’t been part of a post-season run since 2017-18 season. He would love to get another taste of Stanley Cup Playoff hockey before he calls it a career.
Anaheim got off to a great start, but things have gone sideways in the last month. General manager Pat Verbeek will likely try to get some more assets for Gibson, but he could get some hidden gems if Henrique is amenable to getting traded at the deadline.
Main photo by: Christopher Hanewinckel – USA TODAY Sports