Speculation over offseason moves by Canadian NHL teams and the latest on Mike Green.
What moves could Canadian NHL teams make this summer?
OTTAWA SUN: Bruce Garrioch recently speculated about offseason moves by the Canadian NHL teams. The Montreal Canadiens could attempt to bolster their offense by targeting cap-strapped teams. The Ottawa Senators would like to add a top-six winger plus decide which of their goalies (Craig Anderson, Robin Lehner, Andrew Hammond) stays or goes. The Toronto Maple Leafs need to hire a new GM before they make any significant moves as they need help everywhere. The Winnipeg Jets could shop one of their two first-round picks for a scorer and have a decision to make on UFA winger Drew Stafford. Former San Jose Sharks coach Todd McLellan seems to be the front-runner as the next coach of the Edmonton Oilers. Garrioch suggests perhaps the best move for the Calgary Flames is not to make any bold moves. The Vancouver Canucks need to upgrade their defense and could perhaps target pending UFA blueliners like Jeff Petry or Mike Green.
SPECTOR’S NOTE: It’s the Victoria Day weekend in Canada, so there’s not a lot of trade and free-agent rumors in the Canadian press. While Canadiens GM Marc Bergevin downplayed the possibility of acquiring a top-line center I expect he’ll be making calls to see if there’s any deals to be had with teams looking to dump salary. No, I don’t believe he’ll pursue a fading Vincent Lecavalier. If the Senators re-sign Hammond, Lehner is likely a goner. I’ll be surprised if the Jets don’t re-sign Stafford, who quickly meshed with his new teammates after joining the club in mid-February. The Canucks don’t have a lot of cap space so I doubt they’ll be chasing Petry or Green this summer. If they pursue a defensemen it’ll likely be via trade for younger, more affordable options.
Who will overpay for Mike Green?
NEW YORK POST: Larry Brooks wonders who will overpay this summer for Washington Capitals UFA blueliner Mike Green, noting Green is a shell of himself who was a non-factor in the Capitals series against the Rangers. Brooks doesn’t consider the Edmonton Oilers a destination.
SPECTOR’S NOTE: It’s a fair question. Though Green has improved his defensive game, avoided serious injury over the past two years and had a good regular season, he wasn’t among the Capitals top defenders and had a quiet postseason. I doubt he gets any offers at or above the $6 million-plus annually of his current contract. He might get a two- or three-year deal worth around $5 million per. If the Caps want to keep Green, he’ll have to accept a pay cut.