With the 2022 NHL Entry Draft in Montreal two weeks from Thursday, NHL Trade rumors are starting to pick up steam.
One rumor that took over social media Wednesday and became a ‘report’ on some legit news outlets online and on the radio involved Boston Bruins winger David Pastrnak heading to the New Jersey Devils in a package that would see the Bruins acquire the second overall pick. The problem was, this was simply a hypothetical trade proposal from the writer – who made that crystal clear – and not even an NHL trade rumor. In fact, when asked by Boston Hockey Now about the so-called NHL trade rumor, a New Jersey Devils source and a Bruins source agreed that it was ‘Bogus!’
On Tuesday, Matt Grazel, who covers the Philadelphia Flyers, New York Rangers, and New Jersey Devils for The Hockey Writers, suggested that if the New Jersey Devils are, or do take offers for the second overall pick, general manager Tom Fitzgerald should hone in on Boston Bruins winger David Pastrnak, who was the subject of NHL trade rumors two weeks ago. Remember, Pastrnak’s agent J.P. Barry, via Boston Herald reporter Steve Conroy, denied a rift between Pastrnak and general manager Don Sweeney. The reported rift stemmed from a source close to Pastrnak, who is entering the final season of his contract, telling Fluto Shinzawa of The Athletic that Pastrnak had no intentions of signing an extension with the Bruins if Sweeney was still the general manager when he becomes eligible to negotiate one next month.
“88 had seen how Don has treated his two best friends,” a source close to Pastrnak wrote The Athletic in a text on June 7. “No chance he comes back with Sweens as GM.”
That prompted his agent to tell Conroy the following:
“I spoke with Don and David this morning and we don’t know where this report emanated from,” Barry told the Boston Herald on June 8. “We both have a solid relationship with Don and the plan hasn’t changed one bit. We will sit down in July and begin extension negotiations.”
Just as it it is in the weeks leading into the NHL Trade deadline, it’s important to sift through rumors or reports as opposed to a writer simply proposing a hypothetical trade. Sadly, in today’s media world, legit news outlets actually pick up hypotheticals like they did Wednesday and report it as a legit rumor. In fact, if they actually did some Google research regarding the NHL trade rumors surrounding the Devils and the second overall pick, they would’ve stumbled upon a piece I wrote for Montreal Hockey Now on June 18.
“Well, I can tell you this, in talking to general managers around the league recently, there’s teams calling ‘Fitz’ [Devils GM Tom Fitzgerald] but right now that’s really all it’s been – like, hey ‘Fitz’ are you willing to move the pick? – and that’s it for now,” an NHL executive source told me. “You’re looking at an impact NHL roster player, a second rounder and prospect, or if not an impact guy in the NHL, a good player at least, a first round pick and prospect. I know they really want D and a goalie.”
Last I checked, Pastrnak doesn’t play defense or man the pipes. That’s not to say that Fitzgerald wouldn’t be interested in the 26-year-old sniper but right now, any talk surrounding Pastrnak and that second overall pick is pure speculation. Silly season is upon us! Enjoy, but unless someone references a source on any trade proposal or rumors, be careful what you believe.