Collections of rumors from around the NHL, including the latest on the Leafs, Flames, Blackhawks, Flyers, Kings, Hurricanes and more.
Trade rumors thoughts from Elliotte Friedman.
SPORTSNET: In his weekly “30 Thoughts” column, Elliotte Friedman reports notes Maple Leafs like Phil Kessel, Dion Phaneuf and Tyler Bozak have limited no-trade clauses, but wondered if the trio might be willing to widen their lists if it’ll get them out of Toronto…The Leafs are trying to move Bozak, but the three years and $4.2 million annual cap hit left on his contract could make him a tough sell in the trade market at the deadline…The Leafs could hang onto Mike Santorelli up to deadline day to boost his trade value. Friedman speculates he might fetch a second-rounder right now…Anaheim Ducks are seeking a defenseman…Senators winger Chris Neil could end up in Nashville if Predators GM David Poile wants him…Are the Blues willing to try another splash at the deadline?…The Sabres asking the Bruins about promising goalie Malcolm Subban. “No”, was the reply.
SPECTOR’S NOTE: Wouldn’t surprise me if Kessel, Phaneuf and Bozak could widen their list of acceptable trade destinations, especially if they know they’re no longer wanted by the Leafs front office. Still, they’re not going to accept just going anywhere (sorry, Edmonton and Buffalo)…The Leafs could face pressure to pick up part of Bozak’s salary if they want to move him on deadline day…I don’t believe Santorelli will fetch more than a second rounder. I know GMs can overpay on deadline day but only to a point. Santorelli isn’t a star, so if the Leafs can get a second round pick for him, git ‘er one.
Short shifts from Jim Matheson.
EDMONTON JOURNAL: In his weekly “Shorts Shifts” column, Jim Matheson suggests the Edmonton Oilers inquire into the availability of LA Kings backup Martin Jones…The Blackhawks have interest in Arizona’s Antoine Vermette. Matheson believes the ‘Hawks will have to move Patrick Sharp this summer and let Johnny Oduya depart via free agency to free up cap space. The Coyotes seek a first-round pick and a prospect for Vermette…He wonders if the Calgary Flames might have interest in Phil Kessel, noting former Leafs GM Brian Burke is now Flames president…He believes Flames winger Curtis Glencross would be a good fit with “New York”, who seek third-line depth.
SPECTOR’S NOTE: Martin Jones isn’t going anywhere. The Kings need him for their playoff push in case Jonathan Quick gets hurt…Don’t see how the Blackhawks can possibly squeeze Vermette into their limited cap space this season unless they convince the Coyotes to take on part of his remaining salary. I also expect Patrick Sharp will be a trade candidate this summer, but teams could push for blueliner Brent Seabrook, who’s a UFA in 2016 and could cost over $7 million annually to retain. Seabrook is blueline gold and teams will happily pay him whatever he wants… I don’t see Kessel as a fit in Calgary. They’re building a good thing there and don’t need to blow up their budget chasing an expensive star. While they looked into Evander Kane’s availability, Kessel is too costly in salary and return. Besides, Calgary could be on his “no-trade” list…I’m assuming Matheson meant the Rangers when he said New York, but they’re looking for a versatile third liner who can win faceoffs. Glencross doesn’t fit that category.
List of potential Flyers trade bait.
NJ.COM: Randy Miller lists 10 Philadelphia Flyers who could be trade bait leading up to the March 2 trade deadline. Notable include Kimmo Timonen, Nicklas Grossmann, Braydon Coburn, Nick Schultz, Michael Del Zotto, Luke Schenn, Matt Read and Mark Streit.
SPECTOR’S NOTE: Of these, the only guys who could move are Coburn and Read. Timonen has health issues, Grossmann and Schenn scarcely generate any trade buzz, Streit is too expensive and the Flyers reportedly hope to re-sign Schultz and Del Zotto. Read, however, has played through injury so they could retain him, knowing how well he plays when healthy. Coburn could still have some value as there’s a belief he could improve playing for a better team.
Latest Kings and Hurricanes rumors.
SPORTSNET: Damien Cox wonders if LA Kings GM Dean Lombardi has another notable trade deadline deal in him akin to last season’s when he landed Marian Gaborik,who helped the Kings win the Stanley Cup last spring. This season, the Kings need blueline depth Cox believes Lombardi would be leery of parting with a first round pick or top prospect the Maple Leafs could want for defenseman Cody Franson. Oilers blueliner Jeff Petry might be a more affordable option.
NEWSOBSERVER.COM: Luke DeCock reports we’ll soon learn how good a general manager Ron Francis is, for with the trade deadline fast approaching, he’s got a desirable trade chip in pending UFA blueliner Andrej Sekera. Francis is in his first season as Hurricanes GM and has yet to make a significant move. What he gets for Sekera, and to a lesser degree winger Jiri Tlusty, will be a good indication of how savvy a wheeler-dealer he can be.