Alex Galchenyuk, Matt Duchene, Travis Hamonic, Marco Scandella, Jonas Brodin, Matt Dumba, Marc Methot. …all as of 4 PM ET had not been traded yet but were according to numerous sources very much in play as the gong show had begun at the 2017 NHL Entry Draft in Chicago.
Since the salary cap era began with the 2005-06 season, the NHL trade deadline has typically been a dud and the NHL Entry Draft has become the real trade frenzy with teams having a clearer picture of their needs and cap situation in the present and the future. That’s been the case so far at the 2017 NHL Entry Draft in Chicago as the host Blackhawks kicked things off in a big way making two notable trades, the second of which took the hockey world by surprise. After dealing away defenseman Niklas Hjalmarsson to the Coyotes for forward Laurent Dauphin and defenseman Connor Murphy, GM Stan Bowman made a ‘future cap’ type deal, reacquiring forward Brandon Saad, goalie Anton Forsberg and a 2018 5th round pick for high-flying winger Artemi Panarin, Tyler Motte and a 2017 6th round pick. The feeling around the NHL was that GM Stan Bowman would still make another big move being to appease the hometown crowd at the United Center.
While Bowman – who was clearly trying to trim salary – would likely not be involved in such a trade, numerous NHL sources said that Flyers GM Ron Hextall was “listening” – and we stress listening not shopping – to offers for captain Claude Giroux. Giroux’s name had been out there at the trade deadline and it’s believed his name surfaced again now because the Flyers are very much looking to the future and a possible face lift with the team’s core. One NHL source told Murphy’s Hockey Law Friday he wouldn’t be surprised to hear if the Ottawa Senators, Montreal Canadiens and Los Angeles Kings inquired on Giroux. Remember, Hextall was the Assistant GM for the Kings before returning to the Flyers organization.
Other big names like Duchene and Galchenyuk continued to be bantered about with the Islanders and Devils rumored to be still very interested in both. According to one source close to the talks though, Colorado’s demands for Duchene were too high for both. According to another source, the Canadiens wanted either a top 6 center and prospect or a top 2 defenseman and prospect for Galchenyuk.
Speaking of the Devils, they still held the top pick overall as of 4 PM ET but it was widely reported that the pick was very much in play and one source said he wouldn’t be surprised if they traded it to get future UMass-Amherst defenseman Cale Makar a few picks later.
Finally, while they had been rumored to be hot after Brodin, the Boston Bruins had according to one NHL source shifted their focus to fellow Wild defenseman and Montreal native Marco Scandella whom the Canadiens were also interested in. The Bruins first round pick (17) was also very much in play.
TSN.ca has a trade tracker going here to follow what promises to be a wild night in the Windy City! Enjoy!