Latest Leafs, Rangers and Hurricanes Rumors – January 1, 2014

What effect will Dion Phaneuf’s new contract have upon the Maple Leafs pursuit of talent? What’s the latest on Nazem Kadri and Michael Del Zotto? Are the Hurricanes close to moving a goalie? 

NATIONAL POST: Bruce Arthur provided analysis of Dion Phaneuf’s new seven-year, $49 million contract with the Toronto Maple Leafs. The club now has over $50 million invested in 13 players next season, with UFA Dave Bolland and RFAs James Reimer, Cody Franson, Jake Gardiner, Peter Holland and Jerry D’Amigo to re-sign. Arthur questioned how they would add talent, suggesting perhaps a “heist of a trade”. He also noted the importance GM Dave Nonis put on the draft.

Could the Leafs move Nazem Kadri?

Could the Leafs move Nazem Kadri?

TORONTO SUN: Mike Zeisberger reports Leafs coach Randy Carlyle’s recent criticism of center Nazem Kadri’s performance puts the 23-year-old back into an uncomfortable spotlight, garnering attention in the trade rumor mill. GM Dave Nonis also pushed Kadri to improve. The Leafs GM didn’t deny Kadri could be moved, but said the same for the rest of his roster. “Anyone is available for the right price,” Nonis said. “But you have to get back a return that makes your team better.”

SPECTOR’S NOTE: In other words, Nonis won’t move Kadri just for the sake of making a trade. Regarding adding talent, with the cap expected to reach $71.1 million, the Leafs have $21 million in cap space to re-sign key players. If they want they have sufficient space to retain all their notable free agents but not enough to pursue free agent talent this summer. They could free up some additional space ($3.875 million) if they can find any takers in the off-season for John-Michael Liles. Trades are possible but it’ll depend upon the market and where the Leafs are in the standings by the Olympic trade freeze in February and the March trade deadline.  Kadri, Gardiner and Reimer would be their best trade chips if they hope to land a solid return.

NEW YORK POST: Brett Cyrgalis reports the Rangers made struggling blueliner Michael Del Zotto a healthy scratch for the eighth time in Tuesday’s game against the Florida Panthers. The Rangers are shopping Del Zotto but can’t find any takers.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Stop asking for a top-four defenseman in return and you’ll be able to move him.

NEWSOBSERVER.COM: The Carolina Hurricanes have recalled Anton Khubodin from his conditioning stint with their AHL affiliate. Coach Kirk Muller, meanwhile, said talks about a shakeup and trade speculation hasn’t affected the players or the coaching staff.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: The Hurricanes will carry three goalies for a while but it’s believed only a matter of time until Khudobin or Justin Peters is dealt.  Ignor rumors claiming Cam Ward could be shopped. Rutherford isn’t trading his starter.


  1. Happy new year everyone.

    • You to Frank…

  2. Can someone explain the MDZ issue in NY? If they want a top 4 dman in return why are they shopping him?

  3. I don’t know how glen sather still a gm to begin with. Think of all the bad contracts he has handed out. Gomez, Drury, Redden and some people would put Brad Richards contract in that list. All the millions of dollars wasted. Any other GM would of been fired along time ago..

    • Couldn’t agree more. I think he’s been riding his past successes way too long.

    • my sediments exactly, worst GM in the league

      • maybe I can dream and he trades Richards (bc of contract) and MDZ to the Flames for Giordano =)

      • I agree he’s not a great GM, but let’s not forget McDonough for Gomez trade.

    • Sather is horrible. Like the Oilers situation with Lowe I honestly think Sather has something on the organization. No one could keep a job this long while spending most in the NHL since the 90’s.

    • Amen.
      This guy has done squat for too long. His days must be numbered.

    • I couldn’t agree more. How does Sather remain a GM with all the bad signings he has orchestrated.

    • I’m not defending Sather but, he kind of makes up for his short comings in other areas. He rebuilt the Rangers farm system and scouting system. He drafted Staal, Callahan, Kreider and Lundqvist among others. He has made a few big trades too, to redeem his bad contracts: Gomez for McDonagh, and traded Gaborik which was a good trade for the Rangers.

      As a Rangers fan I’m not 100% with Sather but he isn’t the terrible GM people think he is. He did sign Gomez, Redden etc… during his early years with the Rangers he signed those bad contracts to “make the team competitive” while he was rebuilding the foundation of the Rangers.

      • ken sather has fleeced almost every gm he’s dealt too he has a knack for fleecing other gm’s

      • 100% Agree with you Ken. Not a big fan of how they worked out but at the time of the signings everyone was optimistic regarding adding each of those players. Sather’s trades have made up for his signings but I do think it is time for a new GM.

  4. The Del Zotto rumors are odd if the Rangers want a top 4 D in return. I say this because Del Zotto is not a top 4 D, but can be if his play improves. Why would a team trade a proven commodity for a struggling player with upside?

    • Agreed. MDZ in reality is an average forward who plays D. Very weak defensively and overrated.

  5. You sit a guy out for eight games and ask for a top-four defence man for him? Come on, man!

    • I know man at least it’s not a stretch like that Kadri, Gardiner and Reimer for Tavares lol. Still can’t stop laughing at that.

  6. The Sabres could use MDZ….I would gladly give them a couple of “useful” guys.

    • How about McBain and Tillander

    • No the Sabres do not need MDZ. They have Myers, Ehrhoff, Weber, Zadorov, Pysyk and Ristolainen for next year. Be way over crowded. Any one off NYR I’d be interested in would be Callahan, Girardi and Staal.

  7. Lupul cross-check to the head of eaves……better be a suspension…oh ya he is a leaf , never mind

    • Original 6 teams get a pass man you know that…

      • Someone should let the NHL know that jes because this will be Lupuls second suspension this year with Clarkson and Kadri Phaneuf Ashton this will make 6 in the first half of the season for the Leafs….Sure seems to me like Original 6 teams get suspended tell Thorton with his 15 games on the Bruins that….Idiot comment of the day award goes too….

        • come on shtick….if the play was reversed, the whole sports world would be lit up with outrage….the leaf suspensions were clear cut but when there is gray area who gets the benefit of the doubt? who is your fav team?

          • there was a lot of grey in the phaneuf suspension. Did you see the hit or are you talking just for the sake of talking?

          • The question is, what team do you hate? The bias works both ways. As for Lupul, what about the elbow to his head? He was basically retaliating for that but no call on that.

          • I think the uproar would have came if they suspended him and then nothing for the flying elbow he was retaliating from

      • I don’t remember Hagelin getting a “pass” for elbowing Alfredson in the playoffs a few years back.

    • Oh goody another wanna-be NHL sheriff who can’t focus on a terrific game and presentation in Michigan today in favour of talking about NHL disciplinary action over one incident.
      Good job there frenchy, good job.

      • sure it was a good game and presentation, but tired of preferrential treatment towards leaf players. yes i saw the phaneuf hit, deserved. so if lupul was checked in the same manner and had left the game there would not be any mention of that ONE incident?

        • How do you figure a team with 5-6 suspensions in a half a year is getting preferential treatment?

          • they are finally being held accountable because they are blatant infractions that cannot be swept under the rug….look at previous years, how many do you count? kessel was preseason and kadri should have been 2 separate suspensions on same game

          • Wow..nevermind no sense arguing with ya…swept under the rug eh? Big conspiracy theory you’re right.

          • call it what you want …keep an eye on them…they will have more breaks in their favor than against this year….we’ll talk about this again around playoffs when they are helped thru…and yes i am sane and very knowledgable on sports…lol

          • Shticky we all know the leafs players should’ve got more games then they got handed down. Kessel for whacking a stick at the legs of a player not once but twice would got most others at least 5-8 games in regular season. Kessel was suspended for what two preseason games? 2 games he’d probably end up resting for anyways. It was a total joke. Leafs been dirty throughout the whole year but haven’t got anywhere close to the punishments handed out to the Buffalo’s of the league.

          • Who gets more breaks than the Canadiens? Their history is littered with breaks and preferential treatment.

    • I know Leafs haven’t had any suspensions this year…Do you watch hockey??

      • 24 suspensions last year original 6 teams had 7 of em and 2 big fines, 54 suspensions the year before and 16. Of them were original 6 teams. So over 30 % of the suspensions that have been handed out over the past 2.5 seasons have been to original 6 teams or another way to look at it 30% of the suspensoins handed out go to 20% of the League…there is no preferential treatment or a “pass” for original 6 teams….quite the opposite really.

        • shticky…..LEAFS…not original 6 teams

          • Since 2010-11 they have nearly 10 % of all the suspensions in a 30 team league they have 9 out of 121. Generally there are around 30 suspensions per year sometimes less and the Leafs have at least 1 per year how is that any less than other teams? Nearly 4 years of hockey they are the most suspended team.

  8. In my opinion Kadri for Grigorenko would be good or Kadri, Gardner, and reamer for Traveres would be another good trade.

    • Kadri is on pace for 50 pts how is Kadri for Grigorenko a good deal for the Leafs?

    • Geez, if Nonis can get Tavares for that little I would be one happy leaf fan

    • OMG you want a Superstar center for an unproven Kadri who’s been struggling basically all year, an overrated Gardiner and an average goalie in Reimer? LOL HAHAHAHAHA!!!!!!

      Wow man this is hard not to laugh at…

      • @Jes Both are bad deals yes but explain how a guy second year in the league has been struggling all year long with 23 points in 37 games comment?

        • You can tell he’s been struggling. You can’t just look at the points. You got to listen to what the coaches have been saying. Kadri won’t net you anywhere close to that. Maybe 2 a tad over average prospects, a low first round pick and a roster player. Someone who is struggling but has potential to be a solid second line guy or possibly even a 1st line (Someone like Stafford.)

          That’s the max you guys could get for Kadri. And that’s for a desperate team IMO.

          • If Kadri doesn’t bet a good return I’d like to see them move him to the wing. 2nd line Holland/Lupul/Kadri. Sorry Mason I like you too but we need to get Kadri going to increase his value.

    • I’m sorry guy but I couldn’t control myself all I got to say is wow!!!


      That “proposed trade” for Tavares is by far the worst I have seen in awhile, maybe the worst.


    • While your at it you give Pittsburgh a call for Crosby. Bozak and Holland for Crosby… lol ok now I’m done…

    • ……….ahhhh no.
      Just because Kadri is not progressing at the rate everyone would like still not not mean we should unload him like so many past mistakes.
      If there is a deal to be had, then it would be in the off season.
      I believe the acquisition of Peter Holland has changed the dynamics of Kadri’s development latitude but to simply unload him would be a mistake. He is still quality and would require quality coming back. (Sorry Gary but Tavares for Gardner/Reimer is called a wet dream not a trade).
      Leaf fans, you need to be patient. Sorry to say it but it is true.

    • i think you should put the crack pipe down!

    • Why in the world would they even consider trading Tavares? He is signed through 2018 at 5.5 million cap hit and is their “marque” player on a team moving to a new arena next year.

  9. Something more whitty than “Maple Laughs”?….very clever play on words, is that new? Can really see your intelligence shining through.

    • I’d expect less from the Hahahabs

  10. Now that the leafs have gleson do you expect someone to be moved? Is this a deal that sets up Gardiner moving somewhere with pieces for a center?, or is this the type of deal where a guy like gunnerson gets moved for a pick etc? I’m happy with the deal because I’ve always loved glesons game. Interesting move

    • Im thinking the same thing unless Rielly ends up going to the Marlies in March, blueline is kinda crowded, you know Randy is going to continue to play Ranger and will need or want Gleason to probably be a 4 with Gardiner or Franson so…

    • I think this will set up a trade for a new center. Definitely not Tavares like mentioned above. How are the Leafs on the wing?

    • Leafs are pretty ok on the wing. the gap still remains a number one centre and a top pairing shut down dman.
      unless the Leafs find a true top pairing d man, moving gunnar would be high risk.
      He’s been fairly solid

      • move ranger to boston for a pick and package kadri to edmonton for gagner

        • hey Frenchy

          since you are super knowledgeable on sports as mentioned above, could you explain how the leafs will fit that under the cap? what’s the cap you ask……?Also, what in your expert opinion makes Gagner an upgrade on Kadri?

          Might want to look at the Phaneuf hit again and notice that Miller lost his balance. it ended up being a hit to the head and the suspension was handed down. common sense says that the intent was clearly not there, the suspension was harsh and no one did the Leafs any favours.

          Stick to your team. Stuff you are saying to look smart isn’t working out to well for you.

        • Other then getting rid of a player that doesn’t seem to be liked by the coach that Kadri for Gagner makes 0 sense Frenchy. Gagner could even end up being a downgrade over Kadri.

  11. Everybody calls the Leafs the Laughs. It doesn’t have to be new to be funny lol.

    • Like most jokes, this one got old fast, so 15 years ago kid.

      • 30

  12. I still think Toronto is best served dealing Reimer for a forward and adding a decent back-up but the Phaneuf deal complicates things from a cap perspective.

    Ideally I would like to see Reimer, Clarkson a prospect (not Gardiner or O’Reilly) and 2nd round pick going to NYI for Vanek, but even with moving Clarkson’s salary, the deal only makes sense if they resign Vanek and that would involve serious money making 14 players using up the majority of the cap.

    What might make more sense now is Reimer and Clarkson to Florida for Clemmensen, Mathias, Gilbert and 2nd rounder mainly to get the cap relief but at the same time making a small upgrade to the bottom half of the roster.

    Another option (but not sure exactlyhow to make the cap numbers work) would be Reimer and Clarkson to Calgary for Cammeleri and Stajan where Toronto would need to gwet some sort or pick or prospect since Reimer is the only player in this deal adding any future value to his club..

    • Isles would be foolish to make that trade.

  13. I think the question Spectator posted “What effect will Dion Phaneuf’s new contract have upon the Maple Leafs pursuit of talent?” was answered yesterday with the Gleason for Liles deal. Salary in salary out. This is the way it is in this cap world. The Leafs have their hands tied with these big long term contracts. No one will take them unless the Leafs take the same salary and term back. So Dion, Bozak, Kessel, Clarkson are with this team for a long time unless the Leafs trade for an equal contract one day which will most likely be an under performing player someone else wants to rid themselves of.

    • If Bozak keeps playing like he has this year he is worth every penny, same as Dion and Kessel. Bozak has 15 points in 18 games, I understand what you mean but you could say the same of any teams top talent. Kessel is on pace for 40 goals and 80 points and generally finnishes better than he starts has 5 straight seasons scoring 20 or moer 6 out of 7 seasons he has done that. Look at Phaneuf has played the highest level of competition in the league over the past 2 years, still puts up points and still shuts guys down. What if Kane and Toews and Keith have bad years or Crosby Malkin and Letang. You could say the same thing about any long term contract and there are tones of them to choose from around the league.

      • What if Parise and Suter, Getzlaf and Perry, Nash and Lunvquist, Quick Kopitar and Doughty, Pietroangelo, Bogosian the list could go on and on top players no matter what team they are on generally get longer high priced deals which makes them harder to move dosent mean you dont sign better players. If they are good you sign them for longer term, no “star” players are going to accept a 3 year deal when they can go UFA and accept a deal with more security elsewhere especially guys who are under 30. Steen is an exception to the rule not the norm.

        • And finnaly before you go on and compare the contracts of guys like Bogo Doughty and Peitroangelo to Dion keep in mind those are deals that they signed as RFAs and are younger than Dion now think how much money they are going to be making when they sign their next deal when they could be UFAs after they have been in the league for another 7-8 years its going to make Dions 7 mill look like peanuts.

      • I agree with everything you are saying. I’m just stating a fact about the current trade market. If you see Dion/ Kessel/ Bozak/ Clarkson being the guys to get this team to the cup then you are golden. If not it will be tough to change the landscape with the way most teams are up against the cap with long term contracts especially now that there are no amnesty buyouts once the two are used up. If you are unhappy with one of these four guys in the future the best you can do is trade for a comparable contract most likely an underachiever unless you want to sweeten the pot to dump salary to a team under the cap by including a very good prospect.

        • Bro I posted above after your first post. You are banging your posts out way to quick. What’s done is done with Dion. No point in discussing it anymore. I was only referencing Spec’s article as to how Dion’s contract will affect cap space.

        • If the cap keeps going up (lets face it it will for at least 3 more years) teams will continue to spend more and more on players so say in the next 4-5 years the cap sits at close to 85-90 mill (kinda conservative when you consider it will be over 70 next year) and teams are signing their stars to around 9-10 % of the cap like they do now…how hard is it going to be to trade Dion who makes 7 mill. with three years left on a contract when others are making closer to 8.5-9 mill for the next 7 years it all works out in the wash. Same as Phil If he is still a top 20 goal guy (in 3 years still under 30) and there are other guys making 9-10 million buck a year an 8 mill for 4 more years wont be all that hard to move compared to the alternatives.

          • The only reason you would be trading Dion is if he is playing brutal ala Komi so in that case I say his contract will be immovable

          • Who wants to trade for a brutal guy with a good contract? If they play brutal contracts dont really matter at that point. No one is trading a good player for bad ones.

  14. The only reason you would be trading Dion is if he is playing brutal ala Komi so in that case I say his contract will be immovable.