The Taylor Hall trade watch continues to gain steam and a deal could come well before the trade deadline.
Sportsnet’s Chris Johnston reported during Saturday’s Headlines segment on Hockey Night in Canada that the New Jersey Devils are moving forward with their plan to deal the former Hart Trophy winner.
“It sounds as though the conversations so far have largely been one-sided,” Johnston said. “The Devils are encouraging teams to step forward with offers, not so much of a back and forth.”
It has been a tough season for the Devils who sit near the bottom of the NHL standings and recently dismissed head coach John Hynes, which has raised the urgency to move on from Hall (a pending unrestricted free agent).
Johnston adds that it could take “as many as four pieces” to get the Devils to move on from Hall and, to no surprise, there have been many teams looking to make a deal. However, one has apparently emerged as a likely destination and a trade could happen this month.
“The feeling in the industry … is that the Colorado Avalanche are the favourites right now pushing to try to get Taylor Hall; perhaps as soon as the Christmas break, which starts Dec. 19,” Johnston said.
On Nov. 8, Sportsnet’s Elliotte Friedman reported that it was “unlikely” that Hall would sign an extension during the season.
The 28-year was traded to the Devils in exchange for defenceman Adam Larsson in June 2016 after spending the first six years of his NHL career with the Edmonton Oilers. In 28 games this season, the first overall pick from the 2010 NHL Draft has five goals and 23 points.