NHL Trade Bait List: J.T. Miller top target

j.t. miller rangers
Nov 2, 2021; Vancouver, British Columbia, CAN; Vancouver Canucks forward J.T. Miller (9) scores on New York Rangers goalie Igor Shesterkin (31) in the third period at Rogers Arena. Canucks won 3-2 in overtime. Mandatory Credit: Bob Frid-USA TODAY Sports
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When it comes to a NHL Trade Bait List, J.T. Miller of the Vancouver Canucks has jumped to the top of most them. Thanks to Alex DeBrincat being dealt to the Ottawa Senators on the day of the draft, everyone is looking at Miller to be traded next.

Vancouver’s leading scorer has one more year at $5.25M left on his deal and is expected to test free agency next summer. After DeBrincat’s move, many believed that he was next with the Canucks seeking a high first-round pick but that never came to fruition.

The New York Rangers are considered the top contender to the land him but Vancouver is not in any rush to move him.

Winnipeg Jets pending RFA Pierre-Luc Dubois has dropped from number 2 to 7. Reports surfaced that he wants to test the UFA market in 2024 but the ask is too high and GM Kevin Cheveldayoff has to be blown away to trade him.

There’s also a lot of talk regarding Patrick Kane, but he has a full no-move clause plus a $10.5M cap hit. Blackhawks GM Kyle Davidson said that he, Jonathan Toews, and Seth Jones were considered untouchable due to those clauses. Of course, if Kane openly asks for a trade he will move to the top of this list.

So let’s look at the top 25 players that will be at the forefront of rumors heading toward Free Agent Frenzy on July 13.

NHL Trade Bait List

RankPlayer (Team)POSAGETERM – AAV
1J.T. Miller (VAN)F291 YEAR – $5.25M
2Jakob Chychrun (ARI)D243 YEARS – $4.6M
3Sean Monahan (CGY)C271 YEAR – $6.75M
4Tyler Bertuzzi (DET)F271 YEAR – $4.75M
5Jesse Puljujarvi (EDM)F24RFA – $1.175M
6Ethan Bear (CAR)D24RFA – $2M
7Pierre-Luc Dubois (WPG)C24RFA – $5M
8Tyson Barrie (EDM)D302 YEARS – $4.5M
9Blake Wheeler (WPG)F352 YEARS – $8.25M
10Patric Hornqvist (FLA)F351 YEAR – $5.3M
11Jeff Petry (MTL)D343 YEARS – $6.25M
12Mark Scheifele (WPG)C292 YEARS – $6.125M
13Pavel Zacha (NJD)C25RFA – $2.25M
14Semyon Varlamov (NYI)G341 YEAR – $5M
15Justin Holl (TOR)D301 YEAR – $2M
16Sergei Bobrovsky (FLA)G334 YEARS – $10M
17Josh Anderson (MTL)F285 YEARS – $5.5M
18John Gibson (ANA)G285 YEARS – $6.4M
19Jake DeBrusk (BOS)F252 YEARS – $4M
20Vladimir Tarasenko (STL)F301 YEAR – $7.5M
21Dominik Kubalik (CHI)F26RFA – $3.7M
22Jonathan Drouin (MTL)F251 YEAR – $5.5M
23Nils Lundkvist (NYR)D211 YEAR – $925K
24Conor Garland (VAN)F264 YEARS – $4.95M
25Vitali Kravtsov (NYR)F22RFA – $925K

A look at the top five trade candidates

j.t. miller
Bob Frid-USA TODAY Sports

J.T. Miller: He was the Canucks leading scorer with 99 points in 80 games this past season. He has one year left on his current deal which comes at a very affordable $5.25M cap hit. The problem for the Canucks is what will his next contract look like? Speculation has it that a new deal in the 5-7 year range with an $8.5M AAV is very likely. Latest rumors have a 6 the Canucks with a 6 year deal on the table, but both sides are not optimistic about an extension.

Jakob Chychrun: When it was announced that Chychrun suffered a lower-body injury that would keep him out 2-4 weeks, it basically put the kibosh on a trade at the deadline last season. Chychrun openly expressed his disappointment in not being moved. The Coyotes were asking for a package that started with a first round pick, a young player, and a prospect. They will likely get that at the draft. Just prior to the draft, the Columbus Blue Jackets were trying to make a move to acquire him but it didn’t happen. Keep an eye on the Ducks and Kings as possible trade partners.

Sean Monahan:  The Calgary Flames need to clear cap space for Johnny Gaudreau and Matthew Tkachuk. Monahan is very likely to be moved but his health is a huge concern. The 27 year-old’s season once again ended prematurely because of a hip issue. He is currently recovering from surgery but is expected to be back for the start of training camp. Monahan, 27, finished last season with just 23 points in 65 games. For his career, he has 462 points in 656 career contests over nine seasons all with the Flames. The two-way center is in the final year of a deal with a $6.375M hit against the cap.

Tyler Bertuzzi: The 27 year-old winger had a hot start to the season despite being the center of controversy as one of the NHL’s few unvaccinated players. Unable to cross the border to play in Canada, he posted some strong numbers. This season, he potted 30 goals and 62 points in 68 games. He’s in the final year of a deal that comes with a $4.75M cap hit before becoming a UFA in 2023.

Jesse Puljujarvi: The Edmonton Oilers would like to re-sign Evander Kane and need to make cap space. The retirement of Duncan Keith and trade of Zack Kassian will help but they also need to sign a goalie. There’s a lot of buzz around Puljujarvi again as he’s a pending RFA. The 24 year-old scored 36 points in 65 games last season.

Note: The majority of this article first appeared at The Daily Goal Horn

Anthony Scultore is the founder of Forever Blueshirts and has been covering the New York Rangers and the NHL... More about Anthony Scultore

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