NHL Rumor Mill – November 30, 2016

by | Nov 30, 2016 | Rumors | 91 comments

Don't expect the Toronto Maple Leafs to offer up William Nylander to Calgary for Dougie Hamilton.

Don’t expect the Toronto Maple Leafs to offer up William Nylander to Calgary for Dougie Hamilton.

Latest on the Leafs, Flames, Coyotes, Penguins and more in your NHL rumor mill. 

TSN: Bob McKenzie reports there’s not been substantive trade talks between the Toronto Maple Leafs and Calgary Flames. Addressing the rumors swirling about Flames defenseman Dougie Hamilton, McKenzie said they’re listening when teams call, but they don’t seem eager to move him.

While the Leafs would like to move a winger at some point for a defenseman, they aren’t intent on moving a winger such as William Nylander. McKenzie suggests Leafs veteran winger James van Riemsdyk is the logical trade candidate to be dealt at some point for a blueliner. 

Earlier in the day, Darren Dreger appeared on TSN’s Leafs Lunch, where he discussed with the hosts the notion of the Leafs shipping Nylander to the Flames for Hamilton. As alluring as it would be for the Leafs to land a 6-foot-6, over 200 pound defenseman like Hamilton, why would he be about to join his third team. He also asks if Nylander is enough, suggesting the Flames could give it serious consideration.

Dreger stressed that Flames management insists there’s nothing specific to any workings or dealings with the Leafs, though he heard a couple of weeks ago they were believed sniffing around at some of the Leafs’ AHL players. Dreger said he’s not throwing Nylander on the trade block, but speculates at some point down the road the Leafs could perhaps move a couple of of their young players to address other roster needs.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: I’ll be very surprised if the Leafs move Nylander, unless it’s for a terrific offer. I agree with McKenzie that van Riemsdyk seems the logical trade candidate. He’s got one year left on his contract before becoming an unrestricted free agent and will seek a substantial raise over his current $4.25 million annual cap hit. He carries a modified no-trade clause with a 10-team no-trade list. van Riemsdyk is currently on pace for 35 goals and 70 points. If he maintains that level of production, he will be an attractive trade chip. 

Dreger reports Leafs GM Lou Lamoriello met with center Peter Holland today and decided it would be best if Holland didn’t accompany the club on their current road trip. Dreger claims there’s some limited interest in Holland, though some believe it more likely the center will get placed on waivers. 

Dreger also touched on recent trade speculation regarding Arizona Coyotes winger Anthony Duclair. Like the Flames with Hamilton, the Coyotes aren’t shopping Duclair, but they could consider moving him if they get a center back in a significant deal. Dreger said Duclair’s name initially came up in trade talk back in June and recently resurfaced, but there’s no indication they’re actively trying to move him. 

SPECTOR’S NOTE: I don’t see the Coyotes giving up on Duclair, who’s going through a sophomore slump (four points in 21 games) this season. Still, it never hurts to at least listen to offers. Dreger didn’t indicate who could be interested in Duclair. 

PITTSBURGH POST-GAZETTE:  Dave Molinari reports Penguins general manager Jim Rutherford admits his two-goalie system of Marc-Andre Fleury and Matt Murray isn’t working out as well as he hoped. Both goalies are used to seeing starter’s minutes but are currently splitting those duties. With the expansion draft on the horizon next June, Rutherford must decide when one to protect in the draft. He said he’s not feeling urgency, but it’s the one area he’s looking at the most right now. Fleury could be the odd man out. 

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Everyone knows Fleury will be asked to waive his no-movement clause to either accept a trade or to be left exposed in the expansion draft. The more likely scenario is the Penguins deal him before the March 1 trade deadline. Rutherford could wait until the offseason, but he’ll only have limited time to swing a deal before the expansion draft. Rival GMs will attempt to squeeze him in hopes of getting more than just Fleury in return 

SPORTSNET:  Elliotte Friedman reports the Florida Panthers traded Dave Bolland and Lawson Crouse earlier this season for salary-cap flexibility to add “one major body.” 

With Brent Burns re-signing last week with the San Jose Sharks, next summer’s top UFA blueliners are St. Louis’ Kevin Shattenkirk and Washington’s Karl Alzner. Friedman cites Nick Kypreos reporting Alzner is seeking between $5.5 – $6 million per season. 

SPECTOR’S NOTE: The Caps have over $51 million tied up in next season’s payroll. In addition to Alzner, Evgeny Kuznetsov, T.J. Oshie, Justin Williams, Dmitry Orlov and Andre Burakovsky are among their notable free agents. Alzner could be pricing himself out of the Capitals market. 

In all of last summer’s Shattenkirk trade rumors, Friedman reveals a few teams were allowed to talk to him. Arizona and Edmonton had their shot. Of the two, Friedman doubts Shattenkirk was interested in Edmonton, but Arizona made some progress. It’s also believed the New York Rangers could be interested, but that will take freeing up some cap space. 

SPECTOR’S NOTE: I also don’t see Shattenkirk signing with the Oilers. Scuttlebutt suggests he’d prefer joining an American-based team on the east coast. That’s why we heard the Rangers and Boston Bruins linked so often to Shattenkirk in the rumor mill. 

Friedman wonders if Brad Richardson’s injury could make Arizona a possible landing spot for Leafs center Peter Holland. 

He also sees New York Islanders goalie Thomas Greiss becoming the backup for Martin Jones with the Sharks. Greiss began his NHL career with them. 

Friedman also notes the Buffalo Sabres are watching a lot of the AHL’s Utica Comets, who are the farm team of the Vancouver Canucks, He speculates they could be looking at Jake Virtanen. 







91 Comments

  1. Dreger is now routinely exposing himself as a fool without his cousin leaking information to him from Leafs head office. No, Nylander is not getting traded – thank you Bobby Mac for calmly putting that nonsense to bed.

    Nylander is a cost-controlled asset that is putting up (16 pts / 21 games) 0.76 ppg this season as a 20 year old. Would WPG trade Patrik Laine (19 pts / 25 games / 0.76 ppg)? It’s not even a question.

    None of Nylander, Matthews, Marner are getting traded. Period. This isn’t a EDM situation where 7 years of rebuilding have brought on desperation. They are in Year 1 of their rebuild and are sitting 19th in the league standings (17th on goal diff).

    • Think it’s more a question of needs and strengths. Not to say that Nylander is getting moved but out of the big 3 I believe he would be the one that would go to address an area of need. Yes JVR makes the most sense to me and I think if they don’t get greedy and try to rush for a playoff spot and let things play out, over the summer moving JVR to a team with expansion issues on the blue line would likely net a very good D. Depends on how Lou and the gang view the rebuild. You can almost see it in Babcock eye and hear it in his interviews and see it in some of the things he is doing I think he is starting to like this team a lot and not just as a young teaching type thing, Im starting to think maybe they do make more of a bold move. Something I would not have thought at the beginning of the season or even a couple weeks ago for that matter.

      • Yes, agree very much with that Shticky. JVR is on 19 pts in 22 gp (0.86 ppg / 70 pt pace) with a 15.6 SH%, which will moderate down the stretch. I think he still looks good for 60 pts and a positive possession share.

        Between his performance, durability and under-priced (+1 year) contract, I can see him as a valuable asset for a team in win now mode although probably not a team that would have trouble retaining him like CGY.

    • Bang on Dan39, I chuckled at the Nylander trade rumours.

    • And not to argue but Hunter and Dubas were hired in 2014…this is a few years of a different type of rebuild, it’s going on year 3 still early but…

      • Yes, you can easily look at it that way and I’m sure people do. I don’t include the tear down and tanking period. I consider this year 1 of building back up with assets for the long term.

      • How do you not include the tear down as yr of a rebuild?? Lol

      • Shanny start the rebuild 2 yrs ago this is yr 3

    • How do you perceive this is year 1? Shanahan was hired in April of 2014. He’s now had 3 drafts. Wouldn’t this be the start of year 3 year, at least year 2?

      • Technically Nonis drafted Nylander and was here before Shanny but still ya a year or 2 off year 1 lol

      • Nonis was GM but was that his decision, Shanahan’s or done collectively by the hockey operations dept? I think Shanahan immediately took control of all hockey operations at hiring. April 11 2014 & the house cleaning was coming as soon as Shanahan could get a handle on who had to go & who he wanted to replace them with but we essentially agree. Nonis was certainly part of that decision as GM. I think these types of decisions now are almost always be committee with The President of hockey operations now having the final say over the GM. Really just a title change as to who has the power over hockey operations.

        That said I say start of year 2 as well. Shanahan started putting his stamp on this team following the 2014 draft really, Kyle Dubas was hired July 22, 2014, Hunter April 12 2015, the same day Nonis was given his walking papers & then Babcock & Lou brought in that summer.

        This isn’t going to take 5 years, Toronto may well be a playoff team next season, year 3 of the rebuild. If not certainly by year 4.

      • Let’s all be honest Leaf fans this is yr 50 !

    • Typical leafs fan.If you think all three of these guys are going to be stars just because of what they are doing now forget it. Next year will be a lot harder for them than this year.

  2. Wonder if the Flames would be on JVRs list? not so sure

    • Thats what I was thinking Shticky. He would probably prefer to win sooner rather then later.

  3. Trade suggestion here:
    M. Pacioretty, T Plekanec + M. McCarron
    For
    L Couture and M. Boedker
    Thoughts?

    • No 1’s truly untouchable but I would be surprised if SJ, a cup contender, moved Couture. What’s gained by SJ in this trade suggestion?

  4. Montreal would make that trade all day, I can’t see why San Jose would want to get older, McCarron projects as a third line guy so not really a big factor in the trade.

    • That’s just awful for the Habs is my thought.

      • Totally read wrong thought it was a Habs Flyers deal lmao not sure I’d be giving up Paccioretti and Plek for Couturier

        *drinks more coffee*

      • It really comes down to Couture & Patches. Who would you prefer to have?

      • If I’m Wilson I’m keeping Couture laughing and hanging up the phone if I’m Hextall I’m driving Couturier to the airport.
        It was one of those I glanced at it and replayed with out reading it moments.

      • Ha-ha!

        You can argue both parts of that deal. Money & contract terms have become such a pressing factor in trades today due to stagnant cap issues.

        JvR is a great example. A great player, I would love him as a Bruin but his current contract with only 1 season left to UFA status after this season downgrades his trade value. He’s going to want at least Bobby Ryan type money & as a UFA he’ll get it. I like JvR a ton but I don’t want to pay him or numerous others 6 to 7.5 million per. These are great players but that’s almost superstar money & are they even real stars never mind superstars?

        Something is wrong with the business model when a really good hockey player is getting 6 or 7 mil long term especially if over 30. At least JvR won’t be 30 if he hits the UFA market if not reupped this summer or during next season either before or after a possible trade.

        I would love to see him stay in Toronto but don’t see how they can afford him with All those stud prospects looking at significant raises coming out of their ELC’s.

  5. Dan 39-Dreger is one of the most respected accurate insiders in the industry. To question his credibility is ignorance.

    • It’s all good Scott just the homer side of Dan39 coming out. It’s just a rumour but a little touchy for Dan39. Sooner or later someone has to be moved in Toronto.

      In that same interview where Mackenzie mentioned Nylander rumours saying JvR was the most obvious trade option due to contract status & future cost that if Leipsic & Kapanen aren’t NHL ready now they will be very soon & something has to give. Not enough spots for scoring forwards on the leafs roster for all these players.

      Seeing Hall move for Larsson was extreme but Dman are expensive. Always have been barring very unusual circumstances. Injury issues, contract demands, trade demands, personality flaws, etc.

      If & when Toronto wants to try & buy a Fowler, Trouba, Brodin, Savard type Dman the cost will be extreme. Expansion looming or not. All Expansion is really doing is making some Dman available that normally wouldn’t. They’ll be 20 to 25 other teams lining up to bid for those opportunities as well keeping the cost extreme. These assets are just to hard to acquire in anyway.

      • Striker, of course JVR is the logical piece to move as I elaborated on in my post above. Perhaps in a package with a top non-NHL prospect/young player or picks.

        You seem to be saying you think the price is one of our big three rookies. If that’s the case, then go ahead and put it in print for us to refer back to.

      • I Don’t think Nylander is untouchable. I agree it’s not the most likley trade asset but if & when a Dman suitable to Toronto is available the team trading him may not want JvR & his future contract nor may they want a player back that has to be protected come the expansion draft.

        Not saying it’s going to be Nylander but he’s at least on the table id that’s the cost to secure a solid Dman like those I mentioned. Matthew’s & Marner are untouchable. I’m not certain Nylander is & that isn’t meant as a slight in anyway.

        If Toronto can get it done moving JvR & something else I’m sure that would be their preference as well but it may not fly for the teams that have the Dman Toronto may covet.

        I’m sure Chiarelli would have preferred not to trade Hall for Larsson but apparently he had no choice.

      • Exactly gotta give something In the pecking order I’d say Mathews, Marner even tho it’s surprising I’d say to a lesser extent Rielly there is nothing untouchable I would think. Everything falls in line from there. With some of the youth the can plug in on wing Nylander or JVR would be the obvious choice to use to get a deal done for a D one or the other is going at some point if the plan is to trade for a good top 4 D. It’s not going to be picks and prospects to land that type of player and I can’t see anyone dumb enough to take a guy like Bozak for one.

      • Shticky, again, this isn’t the Oilers. Hamilton himself was traded for the 15th pick plus two 2nds!

        Would you trade a cost-controlled Nylander, on 29 pts in 43 gp at 20 yrs old, for a 15th and 2x 2nds?

        Of course not.

        And it doesn’t help that Hamilton is signed to such a rich deal.

      • Because you have too many scoring wingers and not enough D Dan, I don’t think Nylanders cost control matters as much to the Leafs after this season once many of these vet contracts are gone and again they will need to give something up of value to address the need if that’s the plan sure maybe JVR covers that and as I’ve said before I could see that being the case down the road but again if the plan was to go out and address that need now part of the value in Nylander besides his abilities to a lot of teams will be the fact that as you point out he is cost controlled and does not require protection in expansion. I’m not suggesting giving him away or that he isn’t as good or anything other than the obvious, and Hamiltons cost from Boston to Calgary was in part because he was without contract and no longer really wanted to be in Boston. It has little to do with what the cost would be now that he has a long term deal.

      • Think dan might have already bought himself an authentic Nylamder jersey. Hamltons previous cost is irrelevant. If leafs want an established top pairing d man (which Hamilton is not yet) it would take nylander plus. Jvr might bring a prospect/young potential top 4 d man but not a legit top pairing guy.

    • “Dreger is one of the most respected accurate insiders in the industry.”

      No he isn’t.

      The most respected and accurate insider – that description would match up with Mackenzie, less so Freidman in Canada. Re Leafs, even Mirtle is more useful than Dreger in terms of analysis and insight.

      Dreger’s primary value in my opinion was reporting leaks from Nonis. Without Nonis in place, he has no leaks to report on the Leafs. There simply are no leaks from this management group.

      Now, to be fair to Dreger, he still is an insider and has a valuable network of contacts he works to report buzz from elsewhere around the league, although not from the Leafs any longer.

      • Mirtle??? Omg dan just stop! Myrtle is a know nothing that can’t figure anything out for himself. Dreger is one of the top insiders in the league which includes the leafs lol

      • Mackenzie, Friedman and Gus Dreger are the most reliable and accurate insiders. Dreger’s connection/reliance on Nonis is over rated (yes I know Wikipedia says they are cousins). He actually has deeper connections with the oilers.

      • Who in hell is Myrtle?

      • James Myrtle…works for the Globe and Mail
        Also editor and chief of a new Toronto Sports News website he has been on TSN from time to time.

  6. Is there anyway Dallas could swing a deal for MAF? how would they get rid (sorry move)one of their 2 goalies? Is there a team with lots of cap space willing to bury one of them in the minors for a prospect or pick?

    • MAF has a NMC I think and would need to agree to be moved. Both Lehtonen and Niemi have a NTC, I’m sure one could be moved to the minors, don’t see any issues on clearing waivers. The hurdle would be MAF and the asking price for him.

      • He also has an NTC which requires him to provide a list of 18 teams he can be traded to every JULy. His NMC has limits about being waived or sent to the minors not about being traded except as his NTC allows. Regardless all NMC’s require protection in expansion as mutually agreed to by the NHL & NHLPA.

    • Pens could take Niemi back if a decent pick or prospect came as well.

  7. I’m trying to picture a scenario where Fleury is traded at the deadline and I’m not seeing it as a certainty. Everyone seems to say its a foregone conclusion. If he has to be protected after a trade these are the only teams I can see taking him with a ransom: Arizona, Buffalo, Calgary, Dallas, and Philly. If he doesn’t have to be protected, that list may grow a bit but not much. First three might be on his no trade list so that leaves Dallas, basically. This issue is huge as Fleury is entering the twilight and Murray should be a star.

    • This is the biggest trade issue going and its hardly being covered. Everyone’s too busy talking about the god damn Leafs. Another part of it is because its about goalies which are for some reason a boring issue. Cary Price might be the best player in the world and he doesn’t even make the morning highlights.

      • Really do not like seeing references to the Lord God in this manner.

      • You obviously missed our summer doldrums conversations about goalies. We discussed these issues with Fleury, Bishop & numerous back ups that teams will potentially lose. We have also discussed them at various times as they have popped up in the rumour mill.

        Goalie trades are unglamorous & not overly exciting for the most part. See Roy’s trade as an exception. That was highly entertaining.

        The reality is few care about goalies being moved. The market is limited as you have stated. Fleury would be an upgrade for Calgary, Carolina, Dallas, NYI & possibly Phi both their goalies are UFA’s but what ails them currently has more to do with team defense than their abilities. To many good goalies & not enough teams for all of them to play for.

        Fleury will be moved. I assume no later than just before the expansion draft possibly sooner. The return will be decent but not stellar. The benefit to Pittsburgh being able to protect Murray as opposed to Fleury & the cap savings moving him should provide although they may have to take some salary back to get him off their roster.

        Supply & demand coupled with expansion has Pittsburgh looking at 4 maybe 5 trade scenarios. At this point I think Fleury would be happy to go any where he can be the #1 & not have to share the role. He is a very proud player, a great player & deserves better but this is the life of a pro athlete.

        As JJ Richards always said. “There is room at the top” Murray is & has stolen Fleury’s job & that with the other factors mentioned above diminishes the return.

      • Fleurys trade stock is down now. There are free agent goalies and possibly some other unprotected goalies that teams might trade for yet. It’s not easy for Pitt to get rid of him now, maybe why GM is calling out defense, even though Murray is 7-1-0. Division rivals NYI & PHI aren’t about to throw Pitt a life vest when there’s marginally equal talent out there. It’s not going to be easy.

      • He did put “god” in lower case – and not everyone is a believer anyway.

      • Lets stay with hockey. In this context it’s essentially a figure of speech & shouldn’t be offensive. It’s expressing frustration as we always end up speaking in length about the leafs. which makes sense. It has the largest population in Canada & is the 6th largest Urban area in Canada & the US. Makes sense we discuss them more than anyone else.

        I’m happy talking about any team or a posters opportunities to see teams play, nor do I have any issue with some personal antidotes as many of our life experiences relate to the business of hockey as a reference, but religion & politics are like hockey. Hot topics for discussion but lets keep politics & religion off the board as much as possible.

        I’m agnostic by the way. Or is that Pompous. I get the 2 confused. Ha-ha!

      • Religion and politics not welcome on strikershockey.net!

      • “let’s leave religion and politics off the board”…..”by the way, I’m agnostic “….. Lmao! Did that really just happen?

  8. I know he was scratched last week for missing a team meeting but no explanation for Klingberg being a healthy scratch last night.

    Just a wake up call or could there be a deal in the works?

    • Another great observation, too bad its 1000 miles from Toronto and Nazem Kadri the 2017 Selke Winner. Fantasy wise I’m keeping an eye on Dallas D. Looks like everyone is getting time in key situations, not just Klingberg.

    • Not playing well. Not shooting the puck. If he’s not scoring he’s not of much use as his defensive game is virtually non existent. Benched as a wake up call. Similar to Ekblad in Florida missing Campbell, Klingberg misses his partner Goligoski.

    • Doesn’t matter George O. and Striker. It is offensive to me. Not everyone will be offended but as a Christian I am. In a world of poltical correctness it’s not right. As a figure of speech it does not belong anymore. There are other ways of getting the point across.

      I have expressed my view on this as have others.

      Now Striker I agree about sticking to hockey.

  9. I cant see Arizona offering up a pick for Holland. They do not have a large number of picks this year and Arizona is a seller not a buyer. Someone may pick up Peter on waivers, I see him in the KHL next season.

    • Arizona has a 1st through 5th; Detroits 3rd & 7th. The draft pick compensation to acquire Holland will be almost nothing 7th round pick may suffice. I assume he gets waived but due to his 1.3 mil may pace through waivers. Arizona is in serious need of help at C though so they might be desperate enough to but him in trade or on waivers. Perhaps another team like Carolina or NYI as well might take him as they have significant holes at the #4 C spot.

      He was waived in July & went unclaimed but no 1 had a need then many do now do to injuries & players not accomplishing what they were thought to be able to achieve.

      • I count 6 picks. I would think they would like to get up to at least 8. Maybe not though as this years crop does not seem to be as rich as previous years.

    • I don’t, I think Holland is a decent to good 3/4 C in the NHL, someone will make a minor deal to pick him up or he will get an AHL deal next year (can’t see him being picked up on waivers) not sure what he’s done to get himself in Babs dog house but besides faceoffs Ben Smith is just about useless, weird thing is Holland and Corrado have the same agent.

      • Watching Holland play is like trying to find a needle in a haystack, he disappears so often you’d think the leafs were playing shorthanded. Yes he can probably put up 30 points+ but man, the guy is mostly invisible. Compare him to a Shoshnikov (who basically replaced him) and there’s a light year of difference between them and their impact without the puck.

      • Yep, you nailed it Noel. Shoshnikov is better than Holland in every regard. And I’d rather see Smith for his FOW% as a role player than Holland as a generalist.

        In fact, I’d rather see Leivo or Lepsic or Kapanen than Holland as well.

        I think Holland is one of those players that people look at the size and skating and draft and think he should be good and so he gets more opportunity than his play has merited.

        When I see the puck go to him, I assume the play is going to die right there and it usually does. He also doesn’t naturally play a physical, strong fore-checking game so he overcompensates and takes penalties.

    • Can’t really see anyone picking up a C whose cap hit is $1.3 mil and who has all of 30 goals and 70 points in 203 NHL games, and who will be an RFA next year.

      • Ya no George neither can I unless another farm hand with a million dollar contract is exchanged, my main point being I just don’t think Holland is playing in the KHL next year. He is a bottom 6 NHL player or a top 6 AHL callup type guy if you run in to injuries.

      • Are the Leafs therefore over valuing their players ? Why do they think Holland and Corrado will get picked up ? That kind of over valuing is usually left for Leaf fanatics.

      • Think that it comes down to coaching decisions whiskey in the little he’s played Corrado tho not fantastic has looked no less capable of being a bottom pairing guy than Polak but Babs likes the Polak as the better option so who knows same as Smith for whatever reason to me Ithink management goes out and finds guys and it’s up to the coach from there I don’t think it’s a matter of overvaluing more than just a comfort level. Do you like Granny Smith apples or Spartans they are both apples

      • And I think that for the most part they have a specific number in mind for experienced players on the Marlies and they don’t want to tip it to far if they can avoid it so Holland and Corrado sit

  10. St. Louis should move Shattenkirk by the deadline to a east coast team.
    I’m against losing players for nothing.
    I’m sure they could have gotten decent returns for Backes and Brouwer last year.
    I know they were going for the cup but if you don’t win it then you suffer long term.

    • & there in lies the rub. I don’t disagree with you but in a few scenario’s. A serious cup contender being the significant 1. To even get good enough to be a legitimate contender can take years & not certain you can let the opportunity pass nor may get the chance again for a very long time. Few teams are giving that opportunity up. It’s costly but in today’s cap world the cap savings alone kind of helps justify the choice.

      It’s a risk & if I’m StL I take the risk unless the return is to good to pass up & helps now. This team is very close. That said if I had been Nashville; Suter, or NJ; Parise, I would have traded them as neither were serious cup contenders.

      Unfortunately the NHL’s new bracket rules are ridiculous making it virtually impossible for the best teams to even get to the conference finals.

      Last year we had StL the 2nd best team in the West 3rd in the league play Chicago the 3rd best in the West 5th best team in the league. In round 2, Stl played Dallas the best team in the West & 2nd best in the league. It was no better in the East. In round 2 Pittsburgh the 2nd best team in the East, 4th best in the league played Washington the best team in the East & league.

      This format is so stupid it baffles me how the NHL thinks this crap up. 1 should play 8, 2 play 7, etc. & each should be reseeded every round like it used to be. Why play 82 games only to bracket teams come playoff time. I know it’s a scheduling issue but it’s stupid regardless in so many ways & not remotely fair.

      A weak division advances a weaker team right through to the conference final unless a wild card team that gets bracketed into a certain division bumps them out but even then the wildcard teams are the 7th or 8th best teams coming out of each conference. I’m digressing but does this make sense to anyone else?

      A team in a weak division/bracket may keep a player as opposed to trading them as they like this scenario playing in their favor & there are also teams that just want the money a few playoff dates provide. It is a business after all & the idea is to make money.

      • I want to see the best teams having the greatest opportunity to move on. 1st vs 8th makes way too much sense. It’s one thing the NHL can do to help the game.

  11. I wonder what the players around the league are saying about potentially playing for the Leafs when you look at how they are treating veteran players. Example-They re-signed Peter Holland to a 1 year deal last year and now they have told him, we don’t want you. They also traded for Milan Michalek and told him the same thing, they also traded for Brooks Laich and have demoted him as well. Don’t forget Joffrey Lupul. Also don’t forget what they are doing to Frank Corrado. This disrespect they are showing veteran players is just awful. I know they want to rebuild and I agree with that, but to bring in veteran players and then quickly turn around and tell them you are not wanted.

    Just awful.

    • I think there is more to it if you look at that list…everyone of those vets have seen better days and a fair amount of injured reserve and Corrado and Holland I would not put anywhere near the category of vet. They are border line NHL players depending on what team they are on which is exactly the way they are being treated. Moral of the story is young teams don’t have many older players and when you have vets like the Leafs do that are going to be tough (impossible) sells go a variety of reasons this is what happens.

    • Few players careers end ideally or necessarily all that well. Most are forced from the game reluctantly. Toronto didn’t specifically trade for these players. These were business decisions to move out specific players & acquire specific assets & cap flexibility.

      Toronto took back what they had to to get what they want. They didn’t want Laich, Michalek, Greening, Cowen, etc. They wanted what those deals provided. Draft picks & players off their roster they no longer wanted. What do these players all have in common? With the Exception of Cowen they are all UFA’s at seasons end. Toronto could afford the salary & cap hits & achieved a goal. They assumed Cowen would be a 650K credit this year & 750K hit next year on buyout & he may well be & currently is. We are awaiting that arbitration issue.

      This pro sports. Players will line up to play in Toronto as it is a premier market & they are moving rapidly in the right direction & won’t care the slightest about Laich, Michalek, Greening, Holland, etc.

      Holland was signed July 15th & waived July 22nd. He knew the story going in signing that deal. Who wouldn’t take a guaranteed 1 year deal even knowing the inn was full. He could have held out for a better opportunity else where but 1.3 million is a ton of cash & that opportunity wasn’t coming in the NHL.

      If the NHL had walk away rights say like the NFL these players would be playing in the NHL for far less money but some where. In today’s cap world they just don’t fit but binding contracts are part of player personal decisions in this cap world.

      • As far as I’m concerned, the last lock-out should have had the condition attached that there are NO guaranteed contracts – like the NFL. We’ll give you the big bucks and term – but then you better do YOUR part and live up to the expectations. If you don’t – find another taker.

      • Agreed George.

      • I think the NFL is not a model to build on. More and more kids are moving away from football because of the devastating long term effects of the game. Lou Gehrigs , cte, dementia, Alzheimer’s… Aren’t exactly motivational to play a game that will walk away from you at any moment.

        I think something on a sliding scale contract would be a better solution.

  12. Whats Thursday rumor Leafs still pursuing Hamilton. How about only report it when it happens.

  13. The ads on this site are making a visit to it sometimes the most annoying. I don’t mind the ads but very much have issue when they cover the words you wrote. I’m on an iOS device and it’s a common occurrence.

    • Lyle has to generate revenue. This is a business. I try & hit at least 2 or 3 add links a day to help Lyle generate some revenue. He earns money just on hits but the margins are better if you link to placed adds.

      • Appreciate the support.

    • Which ads specifically are covering the words? I can’t attempt to address the issue without details.

      • Please email me and I will send you a screen grab of the offense. It is still happening on news and rumors pages…usually midway covering up half the article.

    • Wow really? I’m talking about ads that block the article piece. I’m sure you can understand that half a paragraph is covered up with an ad that shouldn’t be there be something annoying, right? I don’t have issues with ads or anything like you implied.

  14. As always gentlemen have a great day. Following the Leafs to Calgary tonight. Enjoy.

    • Enjoy the game, Striker. I hope Nylander puts up a few goals with Hamilton on the ice for you 😉

    • Yes Striker-your travel exploits. We all know you watch the games on TV-your creation OF this on line persona-of successful businessman travelling to all the arenas in North America is transparent.

  15. Kinda funny today Burke getting all upset about this rumour since he’s the guy that thought up salary retention to make moves easier and fans excited about potential trades again…Also reading about all this stuff kinda brought me back to this.

    Luke Schenn not in trade mix, Maple Leafs GM says thestar.com/sports/leafs/2… via @torontostar

      • Well done, Shticky! I recalled that but hadn’t had a chance yet to look for the link. Thanks for saving me the trouble…;)

      • No worries glad to do it ..Burkie is one of my favourite personalities in the game don’t agree with him much, can’t really trust anything he says, and glad he doesn’t run the Leafs any more but man he is fun to listen to. Just a guy you would love to have a couple drinks and talk hockey with…

      • Maybe the problem with the Flames is they’re not truculent enough – or most simply can’t spell “intensity.”

      • Maybe you’re on to something George…maybe Matt Martin for Dougie Hamilton? lol That’s right up Burkie’s alley that and drunks and lamp posts.

  16. Fluery for niemi a 2nd and janmark.

    Then pouliot and kunits for jvr

  17. “The more likely scenario is the Penguins deal him before the March 1 trade deadline.”

    Unless it is to a Stanley Cup contender I doubt MAF would agree, and doubt the Pens want to face him in the playoffs, even if it could only be in the finals.