While we all wait on a potential Alex DeBrincat deal (again) ala Anchorman with panda watch we have seen some notable trades happen in the last 24-30 hours. Here is a quick rundown of the league deals being reported:
1. The Chicago Blackhawks have acquired former #1 overall pick LW Taylor Hall and the rights to veteran forward Nick Foligno (then signed for 1yr / 4m) for the rights to RFA defenseman Ian Mitchell and defenseman Alec Regula.
2. The Pierre-Luc Dubois saga has ended in Winnipeg as his request for new scenery (again) has led him to the Los Angeles Kings. The Kings received an absolute haul in return with Gabe Vilardi, Rasmus Kupari, Alex Iafallo, and a 2024 2nd round pick (via Montreal) going to the Jets. Just the other day the Kings traded young blue liner Sean Durzi to Arizona for a 2nd (head scratcher to me) so if you actually put the deal together it looks like Durzi, Vilardi, Kupari, and Iafallo for Dubois. Look, this is about the position Dubois plays in my opinion. A young talented center available doesn't happen often. That's why the Kings did this from my perspective.
They also have some clocks starting to tick in terms of stalwart players Kopitar and Doughty. The addition of Dubois may help or may hurt them in the long run, but for next season at least they are better (🤔 ). The Kings then reportedly extended Dubois 8 years at an 8.5 AAV. I personally wouldn't have committed to him for that long and for that much, but they made the move and now must live with it.
3. The Flames start their eventual teardown? Tyler Toffoli goes to the Devils for Yegor Sharangovich and #80 in Thursday's third round. I think this is a fair deal for both teams. Toffoli had a very under the radar year and should be a big time producer for New Jersey. Sharangovich is young and has upside and pick #80 is more like a late 2nd in most drafts. Win-win here. The Devils also moved on from the Mackenzie Blackwood experiment by sending him to San Jose for a 6th round pick. Once thought of as the future in net for the Devils it will be interesting to see if the Sharks can help him find his crease again.
4. Kevin Hayes and only Kevin Hayes gets dealt to the Blues for a 6th round pick. This was suppose to be a bigger deal, but it was reported that Torey Krug would not waive his NMC for the larger deal to be completed. Having signed a good faith contract, Krug has every right to nix the deal. This deal bascially signals that Hayes was just a cap dump for the Flyers admist rumors that he and the Flyers head coach could not get along.
5. Young forward Alex Newhook was dealt to the Montreal Canadiens for picks #31 and #37 in this draft. It isn't that Newhook was dealt that's surprising, but more that the return was in the form of "not NHL ready" compensation. Colorado, in win now mode, are likely to use their 3 picks in the same range (27,31,37) to try and acquire help for the upcoming season.
Apart from these deals there is a lot of chatter on guys like Elias Lindholm, Alex DeBrincat, and Erik Karlsson. Some other notes being talked about: Looks like Max Comtois will be a UFA as well as our own Caleb Jones. Teams may be calling about Knights goalie Logan Thompson as well per Kevin Weekes (@KevinWeekes).
It's been an exciting day for Hockey fans before the day of the draft. Will more deals go down before Connor Bedard is called to the stage? Chances are looking good that will be the case.