Rumour Report: Drouin in play again; Eichel; Eakin could be dealt

Jonathan Drouin's name returns to the rumour mill as many teams begin their offseason planning, and a two new names surface in today's Rumour Report.

  • Drouin's name has been in the rumour mill dating back to 2016. His discontent with ice time under John Cooper lead to a trade demand, which eventually resulted in a demotion to the AHL. The sides soon found common ground and Drouin returned to play for the AHL, and eventually worked his way back up to the NHL. While both sides insist all is well now that Drouin is thriving with the big club, there continue to be rumblings that they still don't see eye to eye. The situation is reminiscent of Ryan O'Reilly whose relationship with the Colorado Avalanche slowly fell apart over the course of a few seasons and ended up in the premier pivot being dealt to Buffalo in summer 2015.
  • It appears Jonathan Drouin is in play as rumours surfaced that he was nearly dealt to the St. Louis Blues at the trade deadline for Kevin Shattenkirk. The deal hinged on Shattenkirk singing a long term deal with the Blues. It fell apart when it became clear he was headed to the free agent market on July 1st, likely to sign closer to his home in New York City.
  • If Drouin is put on the market, the list of teams interested will be long. Consider St. Louis, Ottawa, Carolina, Anaheim and Montreal as potential trade destinations, though the list is likely to expand in the summer.

  • Speculation around the Dallas Stars points to Cody Eakin being potentially available this offseason. Between the cap crunch, the Vegas expansion draft and strong center depth, the Stars may elect to cash in on the young centerman to improve in other areas.
  • Finally, reports emerged today suggesting Jack Eichel is unhappy with coach Dan Bylsma and will not sign an extension this summer if he remains in place. If the report is valid (Eichel's agent denies it) it creates a lose-lose situation for the Sabres: either send a message to Eichel by keeping Bylsma, or fire Bylsma and create the appearance that a sophomore player is bossing around the organization. If, and it's a huge if, the Sabres-Eichel relationship continues to deteriorate, you can expect the other 30 teams to be making trade pitches in a hurry. Flashback to the 2015 draft: the Sabres fielded calls on the 2nd overall pick (which turned out to be Eichel) from several teams, including a Stamkos package from Tampa and a Bennett+ offer from Calgary.
  • UPDATE: The Sabres have fired both Dan Bylsma and GM Tim Murray. This could be just the beginning of a massive shakeup in Buffalo with decisions needing to be made on several players including Evander Kane, Robin Lehner and Zemgus Girgensons.
  • See Eakin, Eichel, Drouin and over 150 other names in the rumour mill on the NHL Trade Rumour Board right now.
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