Latest on Marc-Andre Fleury, Tyson Barrie, Kevin Shattenkirk and Brian Campbell in your NHL rumor mill.
Marc- Andre Fleury to the Flames?
SPORTNET: Eric Duhatschek suggests Pittsburgh Penguins goaltender Marc-Andre Fleury could be a transitional netminder for the Calgary Flames, who need help between the pipes until promising Jon Gillies is ready. If there’s an expansion draft next summer, Duhatschek speculates the Penguins could protect Matt Murray, citing Fleury’s age and the possible salary-cap issues they could face down the road. Fleury has three seasons remaining on his contract at an annual cap hit of $5.75 million.
SPECTOR’S NOTE: It remains to be seen if Fleury becomes available this summer if (as expected) there’s an expansion draft next summer. The Penguins could retain him for next season to ensure young Matt Murray is ready to become the full-time starter and move him near the 2017 trade deadline or via trade in the days leading up to the expansion draft. Fleury also has a modified no-trade clause listing 18 preferred trade destinations and there’s no certainty the Flames are among them.
Tyson Barrie to the Rangers?
NEW YORK DAILY NEWS: Citing Sportsnet’s Elliotte Friedman’s belief that Colorado Avalanche defenseman Tyson Barrie could be available via trade, Pat Leonard suggests Barrie could satisfy the Rangers’ need to get younger while bringing puck-moving skills to the right side of their blueline. Leonard speculates Barrie could cost the Rangers a forward like Rick Nash or perhaps Chris Kreider.
SPECTOR’S NOTE: I don’t believe the Avalanche would have interest in Nash, but Kreider could entice them. They could also want a promising young defenseman as part of the deal. If Barrie hits the trade block, the Rangers will have competition for his services. Given the Edmonton Oilers depth in young talented forwards, they could win that bidding war.
Kevin Shattenkirk getting expensive for Bruins.
CSNNE.COM: Joe Haggerty reports St. Louis Blues defenseman Kevin Shattenkirk could be the Boston Bruins trade target of choice to upgrade their defense, but his playoff performance could be increasing the Blues’ asking price. The Bruins reportedly pursued Shattenkirk near the trade deadline.
SPECTOR’S NOTE: Shattenkirk’s among the NHL’s best puck-moving defensemen, so the Bruins were facing a steep asking price for his services even before the playoffs. If they do land him via trade, it could cost them upwards of $7 million per season to keep him off next summer’s UFA market. The Blues could seek one of the Bruins two-first rounds in this year’s draft, a top prospect and maybe a good young roster player in return.
Brian Campbell’s free-agent value.
TSN 1050 (VIA TODAY’S SLAPSHOT): Bob McKenzie examined the free-agent value of Florida Panthers defenseman Brian Campbell, who’s eligible this summer for unrestricted free agency. Despite Campbell’s age (36), McKenzie notes he doesn’t seem to have slowed, but he won’t get a long-term, big-money deal akin to his current contract. He doesn’t rule out the possibility of Campbell taking a lesser deal to remain with the Panthers.
SPECTOR’S NOTE: That wouldn’t surprise me. The Panthers are a rising club in the Eastern Conference. With their depth in young stars (Aleksander Barkov, Aaron Ekblad, Jonathan Huberdeau, Vincent Trocheck, Nick Bjugstad), they’re only going to get better. Campbell could accept a shorter-term deal (a couple of years) for around $5 million annually to stay in Florida.