Latest on Dion Phaneuf, Patrick Sharp, Jonathan Bernier, Antti Niemi, Kari Lehtonen, Mike Richards and more.
Rumors from Elliotte Friedman’s “30 Thoughts.”
SPORTSNET: Elliotte Friedman reports there’s simply wasn’t enough time at the trade deadline for the Toronto Maple Leafs and Detroit Red Wings to put together a complex deal for Dion Phaneuf on short notice. Friedman also claims the Philadelphia Flyers shipping Braydon Coburn to Tampa Bay for Radko Gudas and two picks changed everything. He guesses pre-Coburn a deal would’ve centered around Phaneuf, Stephen Weiss and Brendan Smith. Despite reports of the Leafs seeking Wings prospect Anthony Mathan, Friedman doesn’t believe it was a sticking point.
It’s believed the Chicago Blackhawks got calls last week for Patrick Sharp but the asking price was too high and potential trade partners didn’t like the request. It’s thought the demand from the Washington Capitals was winger Joel Ward and a first-round pick.
The Arizona Coyotes couldn’t trade Martin Erat because they had no more space to retain salary. Teams are allowed a maximum of three retained salaries and the Coyotes reached their limit with Keith Yandle, Zbynek Michalek and David Rundblad.
Andrew Hammond’s performance suggests the Ottawa Senators could face a decision regarding their regular goalie tandem of Craig Anderson and Robin Lehner.
The Maple Leafs might be unwilling to make a full-time commitment to Jonathan Bernier as their starting goalie. San Jose and Edmonton could be possibilities, though the Oilers could attempt to pursue Chicago’s Antti Raanta.
The Anaheim Ducks have two good, affordable goalies in Frederik Andersen and John Gibson. Teams like Buffalo, Edmonton, San Jose, Toronto and others could be interested in what the Ducks do after this season.
The Buffalo Sabres could seek youthful options in goal, but Friedman speculates they might have interest in San Jose Sharks netminder Antti Niemi if he hits the UFA market this summer or in dealing for Dallas’ Kari Lehtonen.
SPECTOR’S NOTE: It’s possible the Leafs and Red Wings could revisit a deal for Phaneuf this summer, but it’ll also depend upon the Wings playoff performance and if they decide to go shopping for a potential UFA like Mike Green, Paul Martin or Christian Ehrhoff….I believe Sharp is a certainty to be shopped this summer as a cost-cutting measure by the Blackhawks…If Hammond helps carry the Senators into the playoffs it could force the Sens to move either Anderson or Lehner. I’m guessing the latter…I don’t think the Ducks intend to move Andersen or Gibson this summer…Given Lehtonen’s struggles it wouldn’t surprise me if they try to trade him or buy him out in June and then take a serious run at Niemi. They could also get into the bidding for Raanta.
Latest from TSN’s Insiders.
TSN: Darren Dreger reports the Ottawa Senators had some interest in David Clarkson before the Maple Leafs shipped him to Columbus. The Leafs also reached out to Clarkson’s former team, the New Jersey Devils, but discussions didn’t get far. It’s believed the Leafs would’ve had to pick up the contract of injured winger Ryane Clowe.
Pierre LeBrun reports the St. Louis Blues had interest in bringing back blueliner Roman Polak from the Leafs. The Blues shipped Polak last summer to the Leafs for Carl Gunnarson. The Leafs, however, like Polak’s character…LeBrun also speculates there’s a chance Mike Richards might return with the LA Kings this season. Richards has played well with their farm team in Manchester.
PHILLY.COM: Sam Donnellon reported earlier this week Flyers GM Ron Hextall must determine which of his players still qualifies as young, and of those which ones still have potential or has developed as far as they can go. As an example, Donnellon notes winger Matt Read is in only his fourth NHL season but is 29 and may have already peaked compared to Brayden Schenn, who has as many seasons as Read but is only 23.
SPECTOR’S NOTE: Hextall isn’t done making deals. He’s got to get this team younger and to free up cap space. Don’t be surprised if Vincent Lecavalier is shopped or bought out in June.