Calling on the Leafs to strike in the trade market…Senators might not make major deadline deal…Are the Canadiens shopping P.K. Subban?…Five Blue Jackets who could be on the trade block.
THE GLOBE AND MAIL: Jeff Blair believes the time has come for the Maple Leafs to make a significant addition to their forward lines.
SPECTOR’S NOTE: If we go by GM Brian Burke’s additions over the past couple of years around this time (Phaneuf, Lupul), it appears another big move will come soon. What it will be remains to be seen.
OTTAWA SUN: Bruce Garrioch reports Senators owner Eugene Melnyk is impressed with his club’s surprising improvement this season, but insists the team is still in rebuild mode, suggesting if any deadline deals are made, it’ll be to “tweak” the lineup.
LA PRESSE: Robert Laflamme of Canadian Press reports of speculation the Montreal Canadiens might shop defenseman P.K. Subban, especially with GM Pierre Gauthier scouting teams in California. While observers believe there would be interest in Subban if he were put on the trade block, they doubt the Canadiens will shop him.
SPECTOR’S NOTE: Unless the Habs are getting a player of equal or greater value, they’d be fools to move Subban. Yes, he’s struggled at times this season, forced to do too much due to injuries to teammates and thrust into roles he’s not fully prepared for yet, but he’s got the skills to become an elite defenseman, which he undoubtedly will become as he matures. He’s a keeper, part of a young core of players the Canadiens should use as a foundation upon which to rebuild.
ESPN.COM: Craig Custance listed Jeff Carter, Vinny Prospal, Derick Brassard, Antoine Vermette and Samuel Pahlsson as five Columbus Blue Jackets who could become trade candidates.
SPECTOR’S NOTE: Given Carter’s injuries, I believe the Blue Jackets management would like to see how well he and Rick Nash will perform together when he’s healthier. Brassard reportedly is no longer available. Prospal I think is the most likely to go, followed by Pahlsson, as both are UFAs this summer. Vermette is a possibility, though his $3.75 million per season contract would prove tough to move.