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NHL Trade Deadline 2021: Breaking Down Latest League Buzz

Maurice Bobb@@ReeseReportFeatured ColumnistApril 10, 2021

St. Louis Blues' Mike Hoffman (68) skates against the Anaheim Ducks during the first period of an NHL hockey game Friday, March 26, 2021, in St. Louis. (AP Photo/Joe Puetz)
Joe Puetz/Associated Press

Buckle up, hockey fans, because Monday's 3 p.m. ET NHL trade deadline is fast approaching, and teams are about to start scrambling to make deals to improve their rosters.

The New York Islanders made the first major trade Wednesday, sending A.J. Greer, Mason Jobst, a first-round pick in 2021 and a conditional fourth-round pick in 2022 to the New Jersey Devils in exchange for Kyle Palmieri and Travis Zajac.

Now that the first blockbuster deal is in the bag, things are about to start heating up, especially with teams that are out of the playoff hunt who are now sellers looking for buyers.

With that in mind, here's a look at the latest trade rumors from around the league.

                   

Is There a Trade Bruin for Jake DeBrusk?

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Chris O'Meara/Associated Press

The Boston Bruins haven't let on that they're interested in trading Jake DeBrusk, but according to The Athletic's Craig Custance and Eric Duhatschek, there's a lot of interest in the 24-year old left winger.

"For teams interested in a younger player who would remain under team control, Jake DeBrusk might be the most interesting option," Custance and Duhatschek wrote. "Teams continue to call the Bruins to inquire about DeBrusk and get a sense of what it would take to acquire the 24-year-old winger. What makes him so intriguing? 'His scoring rate doesn’t drop in the playoffs,' pointed out one source. He has 14 goals in 49 career playoff games."

Boston drafted DeBrusk in the first round back in 2015, and while he's shown that he's a dependable scoring threat in the playoffs, he's only scored three goals and has four assists in 24 games this season.

DeBrusk is signed through the end of the 2021-22 season, so he's not just a short-term rental for the teams that are testing the waters.

                 

Boston Wants Mike Hoffman

Got expiring contract, will travel.

That seems to be the theme for this year's trade deadline, and Mike Hoffman is right in the middle of it.

The St. Louis Blues winger signed a one-year, $4 million deal before the season. That expiring contract coupled with his ability to score is very enticing to the Bruins, according to TSN's Darren Dreger.

"A team like Boston is looking at Mike Hoffman for sure," Dreger said recently on TSN 1050 Toronto.

Boston is hurting for secondary scoring help, and the 31-year old Hoffman can still fill the net. This year, he has nine goals and 12 assists in 36 games.

Hoffman scored 65 goals in 151 games with the Florida Panthers over a two-year stretch, so the potential change of scenery just might be what he needs to get back to his normal levels of production.

                   

Taylor Hall to the Maple Leafs?

Jeffrey T. Barnes/Associated Press

Whenever a veteran player is a healthy scratch, that's the biggest indicator that they're on the trading block.

"He might be out," Sabres interim head coach Don Granato told Jackie Spiegel of The Sporting News before Taylor Hall was held out against the New Jersey Devils on Monday night. "We still, undetermined yet. But it's just part of it, it's part of the business. Taylor knows that."

Hall should go ahead and pack his bags, but it's still unclear as to where he might be going.

There was some talk about him heading to the Toronto Maple Leafs, but according to TSN Senior Hockey Reporter Frank Seravalli, that might not be the case.

"I think as we all try and sort out exactly what that market for Taylor Hall does look like, a lot of people are wondering, 'Could the Toronto Maple Leafs be in the mix for Taylor Hall?' I'm told at this point the answer to that is no," Seravalli told Insider Trading host Glenn Schiiler. "Now, could that change? Yes, of course the Maple Leafs are going to monitor what the price on Hall continues to be until the deadline hits."

The 2018 Hart Memorial Trophy winner signed a one-year, $8 million deal in the offseason, but things haven't worked out in his reunion with ex-coach Ralph Krueger.

In 37 games, he's only had two goals and 19 points.

Still, Hall is a bona fide scoring threat, and there are plenty of teams that could use a winger who can put points on the board.