Report: Penguins, Panthers, Bruins among teams interested in Hanifin
The Calgary Flames appear to have some options in trade talks centered around Noah Hanifin.
The Florida Panthers and Boston Bruins are two clubs to have shown interest in the defenseman, reports The Athletic's Pierre LeBrun. Florida is reportedly including forward Anthony Duclair in those discussions.
There's also mutual interest between Hanifin and the Pittsburgh Penguins, reports The Athletic's Rob Rossi. The Pens are on a short list of teams that Hanifin would approve a trade to and sign an extension with, sources told Rossi.
A June report indicated that Hanifin wasn't expected to sign a contract extension with Calgary and that a trade was likely. The 26-year-old is on the books through next season at a $4.95-million cap hit, after which he can become a UFA, according to CapFriendly. His contract also includes an eight-team no-trade list.
The Bruins have inquired about Hanifin but lack financial flexibility, LeBrun adds. Boston has approximately $11 million in cap space and numerous pending free agents, including potential UFAs Patrice Bergeron, David Krejci, Tyler Bertuzzi, and Dmitry Orlov, as well as possible RFA goaltender Jeremy Swayman.
The Penguins have cap flexibility but lack trade assets due to a depleted farm system. However, the club has been searching for a top left-shooting defenseman to pair with Kris Letang, as head coach Mike Sullivan reportedly pushed for the club to acquire Jakob Chychrun last season before the former Arizona Coyote was ultimately moved to the Ottawa Senators.
The Panthers, meanwhile, also have needs on the blue line. They made it to the Stanley Cup Final despite 36-year-old Marc Staal playing a top-four role on the left side. Righties Aaron Ekblad and Brandon Montour are also dealing with injuries that could reportedly leak into next season.
Hanifin collected seven goals and 31 assists across 81 games this past season after tying a career high with 10 tallies to go along with a personal-best 38 helpers over 81 contests in 2021-22. The Boston-born blue-liner also authored favorable underlying numbers in 2022-23, including five-on-five expected goals for and scoring chances for rates of 54.93% and 52.87%, respectively, according to Natural Stat Trick.
His analytics overall have been strong over the last three seasons, specifically offensively.
Calgary acquired Hanifin in a blockbuster trade with the Carolina Hurricanes on the second day of the 2018 draft. The Canes dealt Hanifin and forward Elias Lindholm to the Flames for rearguard Dougie Hamilton, future Norris Trophy winner (and New York Ranger) Adam Fox, and forward Micheal Ferland.
The Flames fired head coach Darryl Sutter and parted ways with ex-general manager Brad Treliving after missing the playoffs this spring. On Tuesday, Calgary traded leading scorer Tyler Toffoli to the New Jersey Devils for forward Yegor Sharangovich and a third-round pick. The Flames signed Sharangovich to a two-year contract Wednesday.
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