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[Speculation] Jets’ Cole Perfetti Drawing Trade Interest

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Jets’ Cole Perfetti Drawing Trade Interest


MAY 30, 2024 AT 10:36 AM CDT | BY JOSH ERICKSON 


It’s been a tumultuous offseason in Winnipeg already after a disappointing first-round elimination, with Scott Arniel taking over behind the bench and deadline addition Tyler Toffoli reportedly not returning to the club. David Pagnotta of The Fourth Period writes that the Jets are also receiving interest in forward Cole Perfetti, although there haven’t been any serious trade discussions surrounding the pending restricted free agent.


Winnipeg has done well for themselves in the draft in recent years, picking up a few quality forward prospects to help extend their playoff contention window in the Connor Hellebuyck/Mark Scheifele era. 2022 first-rounders Rutger McGroarty and Brad Lambert look like top-six fixtures, especially the former, and 2023 first-rounder Colby Barlow is coming off his second straight 40-goal season with the Owen Sound Attack of the Ontario Hockey League.


But Perfetti, the 10th overall pick back in 2020, is the crown jewel of that group. Now 22, the Ontario native is coming off a decent sophomore campaign, totaling 19 goals and 38 points in 71 games with strong possession numbers. Yet his ice time dipped from his rookie season, averaging 13:35 per game in his second year under head coach Rick Bowness compared to 14:58 in 2022-23. He was used especially sparingly down the stretch and was inserted into the lineup just once in the first-round loss to the Avalanche, posting three shots on goal in under 11 minutes of ice time in their Game 5 season-ending loss.


His lack of usage late in the season naturally has teams inquiring about whether he’s on the trade block. But as an RFA without arbitration rights, there’s no urgency to move him aside from the threat of an offer sheet, which would provide them with appropriate compensation anyway.


Trading Perfetti also jumps out as an unforced error as the matching seven-year, $59.5MM extensions for Hellebuyck and Scheifele kick in next season. He was especially strong before the All-Star break, putting up 30 points and a +12 rating in 47 contests. However, he resumed play with an 11-game pointless streak and overall had five goals and eight points in his final 24 outings. Part of that was due to his ice time beginning to routinely dip under 10 minutes per game, though.


For a team facing a decent amount of free-agent turnover this summer, parting with a high-ceiling asset like Perfetti doesn’t make much sense, especially since he won’t command immense value on his next deal after his slow end to the campaign. Evolving Hockey projectsa bridge deal for the youngster at $3MM per season for two years, and he could likely be had for closer to $2MM on a one-year pact if conserving cap space becomes a premium for general manager Kevin Cheveldayoff. Perfetti won’t be eligible for unrestricted free agency until 2029, so the length of a short-term deal doesn’t matter much, although he will be eligible for arbitration the next time he’s up for a new contract.



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Posted this due to rumour on a podcast that WPG is considering a swap of middling RFA talents with another club and Perfetti's name was specifically mentioned.

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Posted (edited)
20 minutes ago, HKSR said:



Rights to Demelo





I don't mind Perfetti as a young talent, but I don't see him pushing the needle come playoffs.


He's more of a lesser skilled player rather than a gritty or two-way/defensive forward, and I'm not really looking for that.

Edited by c00kies
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Yeah I'd much rather the team keeps Hronek. Perfetti was always an imperfect prospect. Ultra skilled but doesn't play a particularly pro-style game, and certainly not an NHL playoff-style game. I compared him very loosely to Jordan Eberle in his draft year, but probably without the clutch-time heroics. Smaller, highly skilled forwards, but average skaters who lean goal-scorer more than play-maker. That he could put up some points in the NHL was never really in question, but to be able to put up major points and be a gamebreaker, the player's coach and teammates need to be able to trust him in all matchups and situations, and that's where the questions come up with Perfetti.

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