Latest on the Devils and Senators – May 30, 2012.

Zach Parise deflects free agency talk as Stanley Cup Final looms, and five potential trade candidates for the Senators.


Parise can't escape free agent questions.

ESPN.COM: Katie Strang reports New Jersey Devils captain Zach Parise continues to refuse to answer questions regarding his plans once the playoffs are over. Parise is eligible for UFA status on July 1st, making him the topic of increasing speculation over whether he’ll re-sign with the Devils or test the free agent market.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: The questions won’t go away following the Cup Final. If the Devils win, the first question he’ll be asked (after the usually lame “How does this feel?”) is if that’ll convince him to re-sign with the Devils. If the Devils lose, he’ll be asked what impact that could have on his future plans.

OTTAWA SUN: Bruce Garrioch lists Nick Foligno, Sergei Gonchar, Robin Lehner, Zack Smith and Bobby Butler as potential trade candidates for the Senators.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Garrioch isn’t suggesting those players are available, merely speculating over their possible trade value. Of this group, I’d say the most likely to be moved is Butler, as the rest are more valuable to the Senators. Given the Senators surprising improvement this season,GM Bryan Murray isn’t under any pressure to make trades.  Doesn’t mean Murray won’t make any trades, but if he does, I expect they’ll be minor moves, involving a player like Butler.


  1. The media questioning Parise on his plans right now is either the interviewer is stupid, or thinks Parise is. For him to give an answer now does nothing but hurt him later. He’s been told what to say, he’s not so unhappy in New Jersey to come out and say he won’t sign with them, but he probably does wonder what it would be like on another team in another market where ownership is less of an issue

  2. If he does test the market, i see the bruins making a huge push for him

  3. I see Parise staying in NJ at this point. Owners, whoever they may be, have made lots of money in the playoffs.

    As usual, Garrioch the Hut doesn’t know what he’s talking a-boot. Gonchar is untradeable, unless equal money is coming back on an overpaid player.

  4. I think Gonchar is untradable not because of his contract, but becasue of his value to the team. It is very hard to replace a guy with his skillset. he may not be the 30 goal scorer he once was, but he is stil an elite puck mover and powerplay specialist.
    I would also venture to say that he was also a big reason for Karlsson’s success.

    Parise will only stay in NJ if they shore up their goaltending for next season either with the return of Brodeur, or by acquiring another top goalie (Luongo?).

    • Gonchar is paired with Cowen… Karlsson was paired with Kuba.

      No team would take on Gonchar’s contract.. but if the Sens are out of playoff contention in Feb he may go at the deadline.

      Trading Lehner would be one of the biggest mistakes the Sens franchise could make. This kid won their AHL team the Calder Cup at the age of 19… He is the future and will be a better goaltender than Ben Bishop.

      Trading Foligno & Smith would not do the team any good…

      The only way the Sens trade anyone of their young players is to move up in the draft to get a really good young D… That’s where they are lacking right now… defense…

  5. I don’t think Gonchar ever scored 30 goals lol

    • 26 in 01-02 was his highest.

    • I meant 20… stand corrected.

  6. I would enjoy seeing someone like Foligno in a Canucks uniform. He could and would take Mason Raymond’s left wing spot on the third line for sure and wouldn’t look out of place on the second line either. It is time the Canucks got some hard nosed players who don’t mind digging in the corners and going to the front of the net.
    Raymond has had his chance in Vancouver and with his speed would be a valuable to a team out there, possibly Ottawa.
    I am a big fan of Foligno and enjoy his brand and style of play.

    • Van needs a Jordan Tootoo type player.

  7. There’s a reason PIT let Gonchar go, worry his declining skills could crap out completely any season now.

    A high priced player like him, with performance worries, age, and past injury issues is definately always a trade consideration.

    Especially if it meant giving the Sens more space to add several other roster pieces to venture further into the post-season.

    • The only reason Pitts let Gonchar go was for that 1 extra year the Sens gave him on the contract.

      Pitts offered the same money but on 2 yrs… Ottawa offered the 3rd with the NTC to boot.

  8. What I find most funny is the list that Garrioch generated may be by far the closest one to pausable he has EVER come up with. He usually is so far up himself he can’t see reality…

  9. My guess is that the Senator’s hold off on doing anything major until or after training camp. And that’s assuming there is a training camp. Butler is a bonafide prospect but he’s allowed himself to get lost in the shuffle and there’s going to be an influx of young skilled forwards coming this year so he’s expendable. Sen’s do need some additional defensive depth, especially if they don’t re-sign Kuba, so they may have to give up a promising young forward or two to achieve that aim. Gonchar will more than likely start the season with Ottawa but will be gone at the trade deadline if the team falters. Chris Kelly, provided he hasn’t re-signed with the Bruins by July 1 he might come back however this will likely hinge on whether Alfredsson returns or decides to retire as a player. There’s always room for few veteran players to provide leadership on a re-building team however the club still needs to integrate these younger players or risk losing them. Kelly would provide that kind of quality leadership if needed and he’s still available.

  10. I also agree with “Eddie is the greatest,” when he says that Vancouver needs Jordan Tootoo and if salary wasn’t an issue would enjoy seeing both Foligno and Tootoo on the Canucks. I believe that would go a long ways towards changing the teams overall image.
    Oh well, we can all dream.

  11. At this point of time, anyone thinking Parise will be moving is crazy. Unless LA 4 game sweeps these guys, it’s not happening. He got to the finals with the team he was drafted by, why would be leave if he gets the same money in Jerey?

    Answer is he won’t.

  12. zack parise is a good player but I don’t think he has shown as much as he should have considering the money he will demand. he is playing much better in the playoffs as of late but IMO he is not worth more than 5.5 mil per. As per usual if he goes the free agent route the rangers will outbid everyone else. I hope they do and put themselves in a position where they will not be able to sign their young d-men when the time comes.
    Ottawa fans should be proud of their team for the accomplishments they had during this past season. However, I do believe they played well over their heads so don’t expect a repeat performance next season. They will be trading a few extra parts this off-season but don’t expect a lot for guys like Butler or even Gonchar if some fool GM takes him. He’s done like dinner. The sens have some great prospects but for their sakes I hope they don’t rush them to the bigs.

  13. you would have to be braindead to take Gonchar at this point.

  14. Gonchar is still a serviceable player. His salary is too high for what he brings now, but he showed last year that he’s still got some value. I think the only way the Sens move him is if a team is having trouble making the cap floor – his contract is large, but it also expires at the end of the season.


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