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Vladimir Tarasenko, Adam Henrique deals among NHL trade deadline news, rumors

NHL: Ottawa Senators at Philadelphia Flyers
Credit: Eric Hartline-USA TODAY Sports

Two days away from the NHL trade deadline Friday at 3 p.m. ET, the news and rumors continue to build.

On Tuesday, the Vegas Golden Knights acquired Anthony Mantha in a trade with the Washington Capitals. Plus New Jersey Devils general manager Tom Fitzgerald stated that they are “not shopping” pending UFA forward Tyler Toffoli and would prefer to retain him with a contract extension.

What’s taking place Wednesday? Let’s take a look. And make sure to check back often for the latest updates.

Related: Tuesday NHL trade deadline news, rumors

Wednesday NHL trade deadline news, rumors

NHL: New Jersey Devils at Anaheim Ducks
Mar 1, 2024; Anaheim, California, USA; Anaheim Ducks center Adam Henrique (14) controls the puck against New Jersey Devils defenseman Jonas Siegenthaler (71) during the second period at Honda Center. Mandatory Credit: Kiyoshi Mio-USA TODAY Sports

Edmonton Oilers acquire Adam Henrique, Sam Carrick: report

The Edmonton Oilers acquired not one, but two centers, from the Anaheim Ducks on Wednesday

John Shannon, speaking on NHL Network Radio, said Henrique is “the guy they’ve been targeting.” He added that “I had heard [Henrique and Carrick] were always a package deal.”

Henrique has 18 goals and 42 points in 60 games this season. The 34-year-old is in the final season of a contract that carries a $5.825 million salary cap hit. He would fit in as the Oilers No. 2 or 3 center, with Ryan Nugent-Hopkins able to move full time to the wing.

Carrick slots in as a solid bottom-six center. The 32-year-old pending UFA has an $850,000 cap hit. He has 11 points (eight goals, three assists) in 61 games this season and has never scored more than 11 goals in a season as a defensive-minded pivot.

Panthers acquire Vladimir Tarasenko from Senators

The rich continue to get richer.

The League-leading Florida Panthers acquired forward Vladimir Tarasenko from the Ottawa Senators for two draft picks on Wednesday. It appears Ottawa is picking up half of Tarasenko’s salary.

It’s the second straight deadline where the 32-year-old forward was traded. In 2023, the St. Louis Blues dealt him to the New York Rangers.

The 2019 Stanley Cup champion has 17 goals and 41 points in 57 games this season, including two in his past two games. He’s scored 287 goals in 732 NHL games and 44 more in 97 Stanley Cup Playoff games.

The Panthers are 43-16-4. Their 90 points lead the Vancouver Canucks and Boston Bruins each by three in the race for the Presidents’ Trophy. Florida won its sixth straight game Tuesday, 5-3 against the Devils in New Jersey.

Alex Wennberg shipped to Rangers by Kraken

The New York Rangers filled one of their needs Wednesday, acquiring center Alex Wennberg from the Seattle Kraken for a pair of draft picks, including a 2024 second-rounder.

Wennberg will slot in as the third-line center in New York, bumping Jonny Brodzinski to the fourth line and filling the hole created by the season-ending upper-body injury sustained by Filip Chytil two months ago.

The 29-year-old can be a UFA at season’s end and Seattle retained half of his $4.5 million salary. He has 25 points (nine goals, 16 assists) in 60 games this season.

The Rangers still are in the hunt for a top-line right wing and have their first-round pick in this year’s draft to use in a possible trade. They are in discussions with the Anaheim Ducks about Frank Vatrano, who’s got another season remaining on his contract after this one.

Avalanche acquire Sean Walker, Casey Mittelstadt in separate trades

The Colorado Avalanche got busy Wednesday. First, they acquired defenseman Sean Walker from the Philadelphia Flyers. And then they added forward Casey Mittelstadt in a one-for-one trade for defenseman Bowen Byram.

A first-round draft pick and disappointing forward Ryan Johansen are part of the return to the Flyers for Walker. Johansen was immediately placed on waivers by the Flyers.

Walker was acquired by the Flyers from the Los Angeles Kings last summer and has turned in the best season of his career. The 29-year-old’s six goals are already an NHL career-high and his 22 points are two shy of his total from 2019-20 with the Kings.

Walker is set to become an unrestricted free agent after this season.

The Flyers have been one of the biggest surprises in the NHL season. A pick among many pundits to be a bottom-dweller, Philadelphia has surprised everyone by holding down a playoff spot for most of the season. At 32-23-8, they’re currently sitting third in the Metropolitan Division.

With that said, general manager Danny Briere and team president Keith Jones have been adamant their focus lies on the future despite the surprising success.

Walker slots into a strong defensive group in Colorado headlined by Cale Makar, Devon Toews, Samuel Girard and Josh Manson. 

The acquisition of Walker made it possible for the Avalanche to move Byram, the No. 4 pick in the 2019 draft. The 2022 Stanley Cup champion has eight goals and 20 assists in 55 games this season.

Mittelstadt has 14 goals and 47 points in 62 games this season and is a pending restricted free agent. The 25-year-old established NHL career-highs with 15 goals and 59 points last season and slots in behind Nathan MacKinnon as the second-line center.

The Avalanche are in the thick of things in the tight Central Division. They’re currently third with 81 points, four behind the first-place Dallas Stars and two back of the second-place Winnipeg Jets.

Penguins looking to finalize Jake Guentzel trade Wednesday

The top NHL insiders all agree that the Pittsburgh Penguins prefer to finalize a trade for pending UFA forward Jake Guentzel by Wednesday night. They have zero interest in drawing things out to the deadline on Friday.

Tuesday night, Chris Johnston said on Insider Trading, “There’s a high degree of want to get this done by Wednesday night.”

Pierre Lebrun appeared on First Up on Wednesday and said, “Pittsburgh doesn’t want to drag things out.” 

Also in agreement was Elliotte Friedman during his appearance on Sirius/XM’s NHL Network Radio.

“Guentzel could happen today.”

Each insider believes the Canucks, Edmonton Oilers and Golden Knights are in the mix for Guentzel. Lebrun added that Vegas is “no longer the front runner” after trading for Mantha, but remains in the mix.

The biggest rumor out there has Guentzel going to the Canucks in a three-team trade where Vancouver would flip center Elias Lindholm to the Bruins. Lindholm, of course, was just acquired at the All-Star break from the Calgary Flames.

The Penguins are also rumored to have interest in trading forward Reilly Smith, who had a goal and two assists in a 5-3 win against the Columbus Blue Jackets on Tuesday. Smith has one more season after this one remaining on his contract that carries a $5 million salary cap hit.

Related: Edmonton Oilers among most intriguing teams ahead of NHL trade deadline

Wild limited in trade options after deciding to keep Marc-Andre Fleury

Hockey people aren’t expecting the Minnesota Wild to be very active ahead of the deadline. Especially now that it’s been decided pending UFA goalie Marc-Andre Fleury will finish the season with the Wild.

Forward Brandon Duhaime, who’s scored four goals and is second on the Wild with 66 penalty minutes, is most likely to be traded since he can be an unrestricted free agent at season’s end.

But that didn’t excite one personnel figure, who told Sportsnaut, “The Wild? They’ve got [expletive] to trade. Unless you tell me they’re dealing Marco Rossi or something.”

That, of course, is highly unlikely.

Maple Leafs seeking ‘any defenseman with a pulse’

So, perhaps Friedman was exaggerating. But the point is clear. Even after adding Ilya Lyubushkin last week, the Toronto Maple Leafs remain in the market to add a defenseman.

“If there’s a defenseman available, they have asked about him. Even if there’s not a defenseman available, they have asked about him,” Friedman said on NHL Network Radio. “If (retired Maple Leafs defenseman) Ian Turnbull were his 1977 self, they’d be asking about him now. … Any defenseman with a pulse, the Maple Leafs have been in on. That is absolutely true.”

Friedman did say Toronto general manager Brad Treliving likes St. Louis Blues defenseman Colton Parayko. But Parayko has a contract running through the 2025-26 season at $6.5 million per.

Lebrun mentioned Philadelphia Flyers blueliner Sean Walker as an option and added, “I think in a perfect world they’d add another D and a forward … a grimier type to help the PK.

“Obviously, Nic Dowd in Washington would be perfect.”

NHL writer Matt Calamia contributed to this article

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