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Canucks Eye Cap-Clearing Move, Blackhawks Fit for Kuzmenko

The Vancouver Canucks are poised to make a cap clearing move and Andrei Kuzmenko’s name popped up. Are the Blackhawks interested?

It sounds like the Vancouver Canucks might be on the verge of making a move. Andrei Kuzmenkos‘ name has been in the rumor mill for some time, but the reports previously were that the Canucks were hesitant to move the forward, citing their belief he could potentially figure out how to thrive under coach Rick Tocchet. Things have changed because the team is being linked to a cap-clearing trade that would likely see Kuzmenko dealt.

In a recent interview, NHL insider Elliotte Friedman discussed the Vancouver Canucks’ plans to create cap space and potentially make significant moves. The Canucks are reportedly seeking a top-six forward with versatility, and Elias Lindholm from the Calgary Flames is a notable target, though the deal might be costly due to inter-division trading. Jake Guentzel’s name has also popped up.

With that in mind, to get what they need to get done, Friedman hinted that Kuzmenko could be traded. And, the Chicago Blackhawks might be a team to watch here.

Blackhawks Have Space and Have Liked Kuzmenko

Friedman highlighted the Canucks’ interest in addressing cap space concerns by exploring options like Andrei Kuzmenko and, surprisingly, Nikita Zadorov. Kuzmenko, turning 28, has a 12-team no-trade list, a $5.5 million contract for this season and the next, and an impressive scoring record. Chicago, in need of scoring, is exploring the possibility of acquiring Kuzmenko, with the Canucks potentially considering a pick and another move to secure a top-six winger.

Friedman told Rick Dhaliwal during a follow-up interview that the Blackhawks are a fit here. He notes they don’t want term and Kuzmenko has just one year left after this season.

Kuzmenko Blackhawks trade rumors

It won’t just be the Blackhawks who kick tires on this. Friedman and Marek’s conversation raised speculation about additional elements in the potential Kuzmenko deal, with Friedman suggesting that Vancouver’s General Manager Patrik Allvin might not make such a move without another imminent transaction.

While Chicago seems interested in Kuzmenko, Marek speculated that if the Canucks decide to part ways with him, he could end up with the New York Islanders and Friedman figured the Nashville Predators might show a little interest.

Next: Oilers’ CEO Hints Team Won’t Shy Away From Huge Deadline Deal



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