NHL Rumors: Canucks, Kraken, Penguins, Red Wings

The Hockey Writers

In today’s NHL rumors rundown, the Vancouver Canucks are receiving phone calls about the availability of Andrei Kuzmenko. Would they consider moving him? Meanwhile, teams are calling the Seattle Kraken about defenseman Adam Larsson. The Kraken need scoring. Would they make a swap? The Pittsburgh Penguins have signed Jesse Puljujarvi to a free agent PTO, and there is big news coming out of the Detroit Red Wings game where Dylan Larkin was hurt and David Perron ejected.

Canucks Getting Calls on Andrei Kuzmenko

Elliotte Friedman is reporting that teams are calling the Vancouver Canucks and inquiring about the availability of struggling forward Andrei Kuzmenko. Curious as to what the Canucks are doing with the player, teams have noticed he’s played under 15 minutes in his last few games and has been sat twice.

Andrei Kuzmenko Vancouver Canucks
Andrei Kuzmenko, Vancouver Canucks (Amy Irvin / The Hockey Writers)

Friedman said the Canucks are looking to clear cap room and said that apparent friction between the coach and the forward could lead to ramped up discussions if the Canucks are open to moving on. Rick Tocchet was annoyed with questions about the forward in a recent media conference, noting, “I’m tired of answering questions about him. We came back, it worked out…Kuzy’s gotta…he’s gotta forecheck, let’s start with that.”

Are the Kraken Open to Trading Adam Larsson?

Friedman also suggests that veteran defenseman Adam Larsson of the Seattle Kraken is potentially on the trade radar of a few teams. The Kraken, in search of improved scoring, might entertain offers for Larsson if the right deal emerges. Larsson is highly regarded so the Kraken’s openness to a trade remains uncertain.

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Larsson is the kind of defenseman most teams want, so if the Kraken trade him, they would probably look to immediately replace him. But, if they aren’t going to make the playoffs, the team could become a seller this season. Balancing the need for offensive firepower with Larsson’s defensive prowess is a crucial consideration moving forward.

Penguins Sign Puljujarvi to a Free Agent Tryout

Forward Jesse Puljujarvi, recovering from double hip surgery, will be joining the Pittsburgh Penguins on a free agent tryout after gaining clearance for full-contact training. The 25-year-old boasts speed and size, but injuries and his deficiency in finishing and passing is what has hampered his career in the past.

After being traded from the Edmonton Oilers and going unqualified by the Carolina Hurricanes, he entered free agency. He was working this summer to rehab surgery and is ready to go. With 51 goals and 114 points in 334 NHL games, Puljujarvi eyes a potential role with the Penguins, currently seventh in the Eastern Conference wild card race. While his two-way strengths could boost the team, adjusted expectations are necessary considering potential scoring limitations.

Dylan Larkin Injured, Perron to Face Hearing

A concerning incident occurred when Dylan Larkin was left motionless on the ice after taking a headshot from Matthieu Joseph. He was seemingly unconscious for a minute or two, but eventually awoke and was able to get up and skate off the ice with assistance. Larkin has a history of neck issues and we send our hopes for a speedy recovery. Kevin Weekes writes, “I’m told all scans are negative (clear) for @DetroitRedWings Captain Larkin. No timeframe for his return.”

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After the incident, Red Wings’ forward David Perron cross-checked Senators Artem Zub directly in the face, a move that resulted in a major and match penalty. He was ejected from the game and it has been announced that Perron is scheduled for an in-person hearing with the NHL DoPS. The potential suspension could exceed five games.

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