Latest Leafs, Flyers and Canucks Rumors – September 28, 2013.

John-Michael Liles days with the Maple Leafs may be numbered, the Flyers could make a salary-dumping deal, and an update on the Sedins contract talks.

SPORTSNET.CA/NATIONAL POST: It appears increasingly likely veteran defenseman John-Michael Liles could lose his spot with the Toronto Maple Leafs. It’s anticipated Liles, 32, could be placed on waivers this weekend. If he’s sent to the minors, the Leafs will receive $925K of salary cap relief. The remainder of his $3.875 million annual average salary still counts against the Leafs cap, but his demotion could make them cap compliant in time for the regular season.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: As both articles noted, it’s not that Liles skills have declined, but his style of play doesn’t mesh well with the more aggressive physical style of head coach Randy Carlyle. The Leafs would love to trade Liles but his salary and limited no-trade clause could make him difficult to move at this point in the year.

Could the Flyers shop Sean Couturier?

Could the Flyers shop Sean Couturier?

PHILLY.COM: Frank Seravalli reports Flyers GM Paul Holmgren admitted having trade conversations with other teams, though he wouldn’t elaborate as to which teams he was speaking with and which players were discussed, claiming it was just “general talk”. The Flyers currently have nine defensemen under contract and Holmgren said he’s not demoting Erik Gustafsson as he’d have to pass through waivers, where another team could claim him. It’s believed the Flyers will simply make a “paper transaction” by demoting Sean Couturier and Brayden Schenn (who are waiver-exempt) for one day, then recall them after placing Chris Pronger on LTIR (as he must appear on their opening day roster before he can be placed on injured reserve).

DENVER POST: Adrian Dater speculates Schenn our Couturier “might get dealt”.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: There was talk of the Flyers shopping Andrej Meszaros, but his $4 million salary and injury history could make him a tough sell. I don’t believe Brayden Schenn or Sean Couturier will be dealt. Worse comes to worse, the Flyers go the paper transaction route in order to put Pronger on LTIR. Schenn and Couturier won’t even have to leave town.

SPORTSNET’s Nick Kypreos reports the following on the Sedins via Twitter: “Sedin’s contract extension in the hands of #Canucks. If ownership accepts latest proposal an agreement could be done b4 start of #NHL season”.


  1. You would have to assume that if Schenn or Couturier get shopped there would be a plethora of interested parties.

    Can someone help me understand what happens to the cap after this season? Will it go up?

    • Early NHL Corporate estimates have theorized that the cap will go up $5,000,000 for the 2014-1015 season to 69,300,000 then rises again another 4 to 5 Million for 2015-2016.

      I believe that to be too much of a spike too quickly but League Revenue is at an all time high. When you have Billionaires owning Sports Teams and using it as their tax write off’s it’s a huge win for the fans.

      Bettman may be hated by the “fans” but (whether you accept this or not) he is the saviour of the NHL. Thank you Gary.

      • “it’s a huge win for the fans”. Depends on your point of view. In the 1969-70 season I started being a LA kings season Ticket holder. Third row up from ice in the corner
        $ 5.50 a seat, of course gas was maybe 30 cents a gallon and if you made $ 1000 a month you were living well. Just a gut feeling but I’m betting those seats are “slightly” more than $ 5.50 right now.

        • I never said it was right for the “fans” to have to pay enormous prices to watch any sports team or live performance but it has become a reality.

          If you want to see any live performance get ready to pay for it.

          Most people have accepted it.

      • Its not like Gary just got here. Who’s fault was the lockout? Its Gary’s fault we were in trouble in the first place

      • Are you kidding me. He has 5 teams that should not be in this league losing money. Put some Canadians teams in there and they will not lose money.

    • I believe Philadelphia will need to trade one of those two centers. Philadelphia has signed Giroux and LeCav for long contracts so they are set with 2 Center positions. Niether one should be sent to the 4th line to play.

      Of the two I think Schenn is the more likely player to get dealt in part because he is unsigned and his price will likely be a higher number against their cap.

      I could see the team moving both Schenns in the same deal where they get back a top pairing Dman + young cheaper forward.

      • I have been talking about a Calgary and Philly deal for about a year now for Brayden Schenn …hes a Western boy however I am not sure if Calgary has the pieces for that However it was said that Calgary had the best draft this year !

        • Cool story bro.

        • Looks quite possible to me too.

        • I hadn’t heard that Calgary had the best draft. Who’s the source? I would like to compare. Thanks

      • I don’t see Philly moving Schenn or Coots.

        Couturier is signed for a very cap friendly hit. Schenn will be hard pressed to sign for more than what his current bonus laden cap hit is (Entry level deal)

        Both players and young, relatively cheap and have a lot of potential.
        We’ll see Schenn slot in on the second line playing wing w/ Vinny and Simmonds, while Couturier will be the third line center.

        With a healthy D-corps and some goaltending I fully expect Philly to be back in the mix this year.

        • For all the “hype” surrounding Schenn when he came to Philly. I’m not sure he’s played up to his current cap hit…..yet. Coots especially with his new extension is a steal at his cap hit.

          • I agree with the Schenn assessment 100%. That’s what’s tough with bonuses counting against the cap, especially on entry level deals. Some of them can be pretty silly. That’s why I stated I don’t believe he’ll be signing for a number much higher than his actual cap hit this season.

      • Schenn’s cap hit is already at $3.1 million because of an incentive laden contract (base salary of only $900,000). His next contract will probably not increase his cap hit by very much at all — if any. Consequently, talk of him being traded due to salary is unfounded.

  2. “Sean Couturier and Brayden Schenn (who are waiver-exempt) for one day”

    What is the NHL Policy for players to be “waiver-exempt”?

    • Those two are waiver exempt because they are still on their entry level contracts.

    • NHL waiver rules…..

      Its based on when they were signed (thus the number of years) and the number of games played. Once they pass one of those two benchmarks they have to go through waivers to be sent down to the AHL. Many teams will be sending down players to their AHL affiliate where they have to go through waivers.

      With Philadelphia both players have not done the game count of 160 yet.

      The issue that would be in play if Philadelphia does this is technically these two would then be considered call ups from the AHL where NHL teams are limited to 4 call ups. Similarly post trade-deadline many teams will send down 4 NHL players who are waiver exempt just in name only so they would then be technically on the final roster for the AHL team and thus be able to join the AHL team for their playoffs when the NHL team is eliminated.

      • Great post and thank you :)

        Very interesting and very informative.

        I love to read how you can still circumvent the Cap. I thought all this was dealt with in the new CBA? It seems there are always loopholes.

        • sending the players down to the AHL isnt circumventing the cap. Part of the new CBA was the wayne Redden rule where teams now cant stash salaries of players on the AHL club.

          So some teams with their final roster cuts will take into consideration who needs to go through waivers to the AHL (thus risking getting taken by another team) vs a player who still is waiver exempt.

          The two ways to “circumvent” the cap system is if you are talking to a veteran who knows they will only play for 3 more years before retirement but the NHL club is near the cap. So they want to pay him under the current max/min 50% and year to year 35% salary structure. So they front load the contract with the first 3 years say $9M, the next 3 years are transition salary years(8,7,6), then the final 4 years are $4.5M. its a 10 year/$66M or $6.6M per yr cap hit. Then the 3 yrs of paying him $2.4M above the cap hit needs to be counted post retirement so the $7.2M would then be spread over the final 7 years.. the second way, only if they are older, they can pay out bonus money which then counts the following year. Boston and detroit are doing this with Iginila and Alferdson where they are paying them a good amount but much of it is bonus money which hits them next year against the cap.

          The leafs are running into this possibility with Liles. they need to be compliant with the cap (currently over). they could send Liles down to the AHL but instead of wiping out his full $3.875M cap hit, it instead only saves them about $925,000 so he counts as $2.95M against the Leafs cap.

  3. I dont see Schenn moving but Couturier has been in multiple deal discussions !

    I dont see a need for a deal in Philly that would hamper the offense …doesnt make sense to me they need to score goals and stay healthy !

    Liles hasnt done anything worth anything in his stint in TO …its just best to get a player who will be there long term the position …and bring them along instead …they have veteran players Ranger Fraser Phaneuf and Gunnarson and Reilly is a better puck movers skater and heavier body than Liles and $3 million less for the next 3 years ……..that simple !!

    It sucks that the Leafs can’t move him as the waiver wire will offer up free players without having to give up anything and take on salary ….the only way to move him is by waivers as a trade is most unlikely at this point or it would have happened !

    If Rielly doesn’t make this team its a tragedy …and sets backs the leafs in progression

    I posted all year last year that Gardiner is a great skater but TERRIBLE on the defensive side of the puck and I would move him up to the wing as he can get pucks in deep and blow by d men and make room for Rielly this way if you get any d men hurt you have the option to play 7 dmen and then put Gardiner on the back end on power play and to fill in for hurt D men and call up a winger who you can do that with at times through out the season !

    • RE: Gardiner
      Your correct. Gardiner at best will be a soft Christian Erhoff. Good offensive skills but after watching Caryle coach the Ducks he won’t use Gardiner when Leafs have to be in a defense mode such as tied or one goal ahead late in game. BUT still Jake should have a decent NHL career and live a really good life style if he keeps up the offensive numbers.

    • when are you Leafs fans going to learn that you have to develop your d slowly. DONT RUSH UP YOUR PLAYERS. I recently moved to Ontario from Saskatchewan, and got to see a lot of Rielly play in Moose Jaw. He is a great player but in no way is he ready for the NHL….Yet! Let him dominate the juniors for one year, as he hasn’t really gotten to do yet in his career with the injuries.

      • I really disagree !!


        There are some players that benefit from Junior another year and some who really need the guidance and confidence of playing for the NHL club instead ..I feel this is where Rielly is ….the 9 games will tell ….I hope he sticks …

        Now that the Bernier bubble has burst however he stopped a lot of shots …Reimer will not be out done !!

        • Bubble burst? 1 preseason game out shot 2-1 (again) he kept them in that game with some beauty saves….the competition is just begining the Bernier buble burst where you get this stuff? You make it sound like it was his fault. out shot badly 3 power play goals and some very bad coverage is what the story was there, not the goaltending give your head a shake.

      • i guess toronto is the only team that is not allowed to play its junior players but the other teams can

  4. Somewhere down the road, I could see Jake Gardiner doing a Red Kelly and moving to centre, not the wing, but either way he needs to perfect the defensive part of the game. I hope he’s one of the Leafs that plays consistently at a higher level this year. Could say that about three or four others, starting with the goalies. Should be interesting.

    • Gardiner didnt look good last night, or for that matter with the exception of 1 game thru most of the preseason but its just preseason give it some time…with the exception of the one beauty of a breakout pass to Bozak, Franson looked pretty average too but its just preseason no need to panic yet. All Ive seen so far this morning is media ripping on Gardiner but tell me who was his partner again for most the night? This is the problem I have had all along too many PMD not enough guys who can play in their own end.

      • This has been an ongoing issue with Gardiner …you guys are talking as if this is his first rodeo and hes a ROOKIE ….HES NOT !!!

        Young YES!! But his defensive side of teh game is not very good …if you notice even Erik Karlson is now getting exposed ( scouting report ) for his offensive outbursts and getting caught up ice …at least Karlson know how to play the play …Gardiner just keeps going and gets caught all the time !!!
        Can not play the d side of the game !
        As I said last year and the year before that this is his game …hes better on the wing and back checking as opposed to rushing the puck and getting caught with only one defender back every time hes on the ice !

        Take NOTE: Watch Riellys game if he p[lays again as he rushes the puck …hard through the neutral zone middle to outside …then over the blue line and curls at the top of the circle and allows for the rush to catch up and the defensive players to pass on by …while the defenders are stopping and turning he makes the play as they are flat footed and creates excellent opportunities …Jake on the other hand misses his opportunity with no shot and carries the puck into the corners or passes it on net and has to skate 200 feet to catch the play ..Reilly is the best QB they have !

    • Brilliant. Why don’s they try him on the wing, he is gifted ,just not defensively responsible.

      • Ya maybe him and Kuli could switch spots smh

  5. PANTHERS busy !!

    Trade for Barch sign Boyes and Gilbert to add some veteran presence . if Thomas saves some games this team may be a spoiler for the 8th spot !!

    As stated before Thomas will be in discussion for the Vezina …IMO