Rumour Report: Top draft picks in play? Leafs talking trade? De Haan, Niederreiter rumours + more

A top 3 pick in the draft could be in play, the Leafs may have a trade in the works, and rumours swirl around Calvin de Haan and Nino Niederreiter in this edition of Rumour Report.

  • Dallas Stars GM Jim Nill has admitted he's had trade talks with other teams for the 3rd overall pick in this year's draft. This shouldn't be shocking considering the Stars want to win now and that selection likely wouldn't yield an automatic NHLer. Nonetheless, you'd have to think teams focussed building their prospects like Vegas or Colorado would love to move up to that slot. 
  • Every year a lot of buzz surrounds the first few picks in the draft. In 2014 many teams pushed to get the first overall pick from Florida who ended up taking Aaron Ekblad. In 2015, a lot of buzz surrounded the Leafs at #4 as well as the Bruins bid to use their three firsts to move up. Last year it sounded like the Blue Jackets wanted to move down from #3. In all instances, the trades fell apart. We'll have to wait and see if the dynamics are any different this year.
  • Islanders defenseman Calvin de Haan is back in the rumour mill. His name popped up last summer, and it sounds like he might be on the move some time before the June expansion draft. The other possibility is the Isles finally moving Travis Hamonic, who asked to be traded to Western Canada for personal reasons. He quietly retracted the request, but the possibility of a trade still exists.

  • Rumours suggest teams are inquiring on Minnesota Wild forward Nino Niederreiter ahead of the expansion draft as well. The Lightning made a pitch on Niederreiter last season, so it'll be interesting to see if they revisit those talks.
  • Maple Leafs GM Lou Lamoriello and head coach Mike Babcock are both in Nashville, and some believe it could be trade related. This could mean the Predators or Ducks, who both have a bevy of excellent defensemen that the Leafs would covet. On the Ducks, Sami Vatanen, Shea Theodore and Jacob Larsson are names to keep an eye on.
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