Updates on Loui Eriksson and Dustin Byfuglien, a list of pending UFAs who should be re-signed and more in your Sunday NHL rumor roundup.
Highlights from Shinzawa’s Sunday Hockey Notes
THE BOSTON GLOBE: Fluto Shinzawa speculates on what the Boston Bruins might do if they decide to shop pending UFA right wing Loui Eriksson before the Feb. 29 trade deadline. One option could be peddling him to a team looking to clear salary for a defenseman with term remaining on his contract. Shinzawa’s suggested options include the Winnipeg Jets’ Tobias Enstrom ($5.75 million annually through 2018), Fedor Tyutin ($4.5 million per through 2018) or Jack Johnson (over $4.3 million per through 2018) of the Columbus Blue Jackets, the Anaheim Ducks’ Kevin Bieksa ($4 million per through 2018), the Calgary Flames’ Dennis Wideman ($5.25 million through 2017) or the Ottawa Senators’ Jared Cowen ($3.1 million cap through through 2017).
SPECTOR’S NOTE: Interesting premise from Shinzawa. I doubt Bruins GM Don Sweeney would be interested in Bieksa, Wideman or Cowen. Enstrom or Johnson could be intriguing, but I think Sweeney will look for less expensive options.
If the Toronto Maple Leafs decide to trade pending UFA goalie James Reimer, the Calgary Flames and Carolina Hurricanes could be interested.
Shinzawa believes struggling Nashville Predators’ starting goalie Pekka Rinne could use some help.
Updates on Byfuglien and Ladd.
SPORTSNET: Elliotte Friedman reports an increase in contract negotiations between the Winnipeg Jets and defenseman Dustin Byfuglien. Friedman also claims things are quieter in left wing Andrew Ladd’s discussions, though if both sides are willing to budge, there’s a possibility for a deal.
List of UFAs who should be re-signed.
ESPN.COM: Matthew Coller lists Boston’s Loui Eriksson, Winnipeg’s Dustin Byfuglien, Calgary Flames winger Jiri Hudler, Buffalo Sabres left wing Jamie McGinn, Toronto’s James Reimer and winger P-A Parenteau, New Jersey Devils forward Lee Stempniak, Edmonton Oilers winger Teddy Purcell, Philadelphia Flyers defenseman Evgeny Medvedev and Montreal Canadiens forward Dale Weise as pending UFAs who should be re-signed, rather than traded.
SPECTOR’S NOTE: Regarding Eriksson, Byfuglien and Hudler, their clubs want to keep them. However, their salary demands could be difficult to carry, especially when they’re got younger talent on the roster also due for big raises in the near future. As for Reimer, the Leafs must decide if he’s going to be their long-term starter or if they’re going to look elsewhere. The rest would be affordable re-signings if their clubs wish to retain them.
Rumors from the Blogosphere.
It’s been a quieter than usual Sunday for media-generated trade rumors, so let’s take a look at what’s kicking around the ol’ blogosphere.
THE HOCKEY PRESS: claims “league sources” say the Edmonton Oilers and Montreal Canadiens “are currently discussing a potential major trade involving Ryan Nugent-Hopkins, and Alexei Emelin and/or Nathan Beaulieu, Sven Andrighetto, Draft Picks.”
SPECTOR’S NOTE: That sounds more like the wet dream of a Habs fan than anything based in reality.
The Chicago Blackhawks are very interested in bringing back Winnipeg Jets left wing Andrew Ladd. The asking price is said to be Teuvo Teravainen, Trevor Van Riemsdyk, and Draft Picks.
SPECTOR’S NOTE: Well, that one’s not happening. Yes, the Jets will want a good return for Ladd and Bowman might be interested in bringing him back as a playoff rental, but not at that price.
The Boston Bruins and Philadelphia Flyers are in “HUGE trade discussions”. The Bruins wish to move winger Loui Eriksson and the Flyers want to move defenseman Mark Streit. “The Bruins would have to either include a cap dump or the Flyers would have to retain some salary on Mark Streit. Sources say if they Flyers were to choose to acquire a cap dump, they would have to take Chris Kelly from the Bruins, if not they can retain about $1.5M on Mark Streit”.
SPECTOR’S NOTE: This makes no sense for the Bruins. They don’t need another aging defenseman. If they do deal Eriksson for a blueliner, it’ll be for someone much younger than the 38-year-old Streit.
It’s reported the Minnesota Wild and New Jersey Devils are discussing a a trade revolving around Lee Stempniak and Marco Scandella.
SPECTOR’S NOTE: I don’t see why the Devils would trade one of their leading scorers for a defenseman. They’ve already got a solid blueline and are among the better defensive clubs. What they need is offense, as they’re among the lowest-scoring teams in the league. The Devils are jockeying for a playoff spot so it makes no sense to weaken their anemic offense by strengthening their defense.
HOCKEY BUZZ: Eklund claims the Detroit Red Wings have discussion Loui Eriksson with the Boston Bruins.
The Predators and Wild aren’t pursuing Tampa Bay Lightning winger Jonathan Drouin. The Blues remain the most interested.
The Los Angeles Kings are “trying hard” to land Dustin Byfuglien, but the Anaheim Ducks and Dallas Stars have entered the conversation.
SPECTOR’S NOTE: The Kings and Stars I can see, but not the Ducks, who are very deep on defense but could use a scoring forward, preferably a left wing. Yes, Byfuglien can also play on the wing but he’s most effective as a defenseman.