Latest on Mike Cammalleri, Cam Ward, Ryan Miller, Thomas Vanek, Ales Hemsky, Kris Letang and more.
SPORTSNET: Nick Kypreos reports the Flames are talking contract extension with Mike Cammalleri. Kypreos believes re-signing him could cost more than president of hockey operations Brian Burke is willing to pay and still expects the winger to be moved by the trade deadline, with a first round pick and a prospect as the asking price. Teams which could use scoring include the Kings, Sharks and Canucks. Roger Millions cites the Coyotes as a possible destination for Cammalleri …Teams will want assurances Blue Jackets winger Marian Gaborik is healthy before expressing interest in him by the trade deadline…Scott Morrison claims Hurricanes GM Jim Rutherford has no intention of trading Cam Ward and will continue carrying three goalies. If Rutherford decides to move one of them, it won’t be Ward….John Shannon claims there’s no way the Predators will trade pending free agent center David Legwand.
SPECTOR’S NOTE: Once Cammalleri has recovered from his concussion expect the Flames to get considerable interest in him. I expect he’ll be move by the trade deadline in March. A number of clubs will have interest, including those mentioned by Kypreos and Millions…Scouts would prefer seeing Gaborik play before the Olympic break, but I suspect he will still garner interest if he’s returned to the lineup between the end of the Olympic break and the March trade deadline. His injury history means the Jackets won’t get a big return for him…If Ward is traded, and that’s a big “if”, it’ll be in the off-season…The Predators may be getting offers for Legwand but moving him hurts their anemic offense and thus their playoff hopes.
ESPN.COM: Pierre LeBrun reports new Buffalo Sabres GM Tim Murray is weighing his options with pending UFA goalie Ryan Miller, which could include trying to re-sign him. However, if Miller isn’t interested in staying, LeBrun believes Murray has no choice but to move him at the trade deadline.
SPECTOR’S NOTE: I’ll be very surprised if Miller re-signs with the Sabres. I expect he’ll want to move on to a Cup contender if possible, preferably one either in California (to be nearer his actress-wife) or close to that state.
NEWSDAY.COM: Arthur Staple reports contract talks could soon pick up between the Islanders and the agents for Thomas Vanek. If Vanek isn’t willing to re-sign a long-term deal, Staple believes they’ll shop the winger at the trade deadline. There’s been no contract talks with pending UFA defenseman Andrew MacDonald, who is believed seeking a deal in the range of $5 million per season.
SPECTOR’S NOTE: Moving Vanek and/or MacDonald at the trade deadline are likely options, but if the Isles remain in the playoff chase they could retain both and try to re-sign or move them in June.
EDMONTON JOURNAL: Jonathan Willis notes Ales Hemsky seems the Oilers most likely trade candidate, but questions if he’d be their best one, believing Jordan Eberle or Nail Yakupov could fetch a better return which could truly address one of the Oilers needs.
SPECTOR’S NOTE: Hemsky lands at best a second round draft pick by the trade deadline. He won’t fetch a power forward, top-two defenseman or a true starting goaltender.
OTTAWA SUN/OTTAWA CITIZEN: Bruce Garrioch reports the Senators seek a top-six forward, listing Buffalo’s Matt Moulson (asking price: first round pick and a prospect), NY Rangers’ Ryan Callahan, Edmonton’s Ales Hemsky, Buffalo’s Drew Stafford and Carolina’s Tuomo Ruutu. Ken Warren reports the Senators are carrying two extra defenseman and could move a blueliner in the coming weeks.
SPECTOR’S NOTE: Forget about Callahan, the Rangers won’t move their captain while in the midst of the playoff race. The rest are believed available and could be among the Senators’ best targets. Garrioch excluded Mike Cammalleri, possibly because of his size and recent concussion. I think the Sens could package one of their spare defensemen with a draft pick or prospect for a winger.
CSNBAYAREA.COM: Replying to a reader’s question about the possibility of the Sharks bringing back Ray Whitney, Kevin Kurz didn’t rule it out.
BOSTON GLOBE/CSNNE.COM: Fluto Shinzawa lists Ottawa’s Chris Phillips,NY Islanders’ Andrew MacDonald, Detroit’s Kyle Quincey and Buffalo’s Henrik Tallinder as possible trade targets if the Bruins decide to acquire a defenseman before the trade deadline. He writes the Bruins prefer a stay-at-home left-shot defenseman. Joe Haggerty believes the Bruins would seek a playoff rental on defense.
SPECTOR’S NOTE: The Senators aren’t moving Phillips and the Isles won’t trade MacDonald unless they fall out of the playoff race by the deadline.
ARIZONA REPUBLIC: Sarah McLellan reports Phoenix Coyotes GM Don Maloney seeks scoring depth.“I don’t want to trade a forward for another forward,” he said. “You’re always looking to upgrade, but we’re looking to add instead of give a forward to get a forward.” . McLellan notes trade options for Maloney are slim right now.
TRIBLIVE.COM: Dejan Kovacevic calls for the Pittsburgh Penguins to trade Kris Letang.
SPECTOR’S NOTE: Yeah, like that’s gonna happen.