NHL Canadian Corner – February 6, 2014

Latest on Carey Price, Roberto Luongo, Nikolai Kulemin and Chris Thorburn, plus updates on the Senators, Flames and Oilers.

Olympic teammates Roberto Luongo & Carey Price will face off tonight.

Olympic teammates Roberto Luongo & Carey Price could face each other tonight in Montreal.

LA PRESSE: Carey Price and Roberto Luongo are expected to be tonight’s starting goalies when the Canadiens face the Vancouver Canucks in Montreal. Price and Luongo are also among Team Canada’s three goaltenders at the upcoming Sochi Games.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: It’ll be interesting to see if Price or Luongo becomes Canada’s starter in Sochi.

VANCOUVER SUN: Don’t expect Canucks GM Mike Gillis to fire head coach John Tortorella as the pair are on the same page.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: The Canucks actually played better than most expected during the first half of this season but they’ve gone through a horrible stretch since early-January. Injuries and a lack of offensive depth are primarily to blame. Tortorella’s recent six-game suspension didn’t help but he’s not the reason for the Canucks recent decline.

TORONTO SUN: Long-time Maple Leafs forward Nikolai Kulemin has become the subject of trade speculation. He’s an unrestricted free agent this summer but says his preference is to remain a Leaf.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: It’s rumored the Leafs are shopping Kulemin but want a roster player in return. If they trade him it won’t be as a salary dump.

OTTAWA CITIZEN: Wayne Scanlan wonders if the Senators’ recent win over the St. Louis Blues could serve as a rallying point.

CALGARY SUN: Only the Montreal Canadiens have blocked more shots this season than the Calgary Flames.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: That’s one reason why the rebuilding Flames are playing better than many expected this season.

EDMONTON SUN: The Oilers are swapping around their first and second line wingers. “David Perron will play with Sam Gagner and Jordan Eberle on the second line. Nail Yakupov will be moved up to the top line with Taylor Hall and Ryan Nugent-Hopkins.”

WINNIPEG SUN: Jets winger Chris Thorburn is trying to make the most of his opportunity replacing the injured Evander Kane. So far he has three points in four games.


  1. The Flames in the late game on HNIC are generally some of the best games Ive seen this year, pretty much always an exciting close game no matter who they are playing.

  2. Although it’s unlikely to happen during the season as the teams are conference rivals I have to wonder how Kulemin might look playing beside Jason Spezza…
    A lot of people have speculated that Team Canada’s achilles heel may be their goaltending. With Bernier playing so well this season its a shame he didn’t get a look at the # 3 position. Expect a lot of second guessing if the team delivers a disappointing finish.

  3. The Leafs would be foolish to trade Kuli unless his salary request is greater than they’re willing to pay. They know what he brings to the table with his 2-way play and grit so I hope they re-sign him before the deadline otherwise trading him remains the only option other than letting him walk for nothing. Raymond should be who the Leafs should be shopping as they’re pretty aware he’ll be wanting a multi-year extention around $3mil/year. I feel the Leafs will re-sign Bolland and Kuli by the March deadline and trade Raymond and Franson for another Defenseman……(hopefully A.MacDonald)

    • I get that he plays a good 200 ft game but realistically Kuli is not going to take any less money in fact is going to want a raise and I cant see keeping him. It makes no sense D’Amigo is another responsible good defensive forward who could slide in to the third line with ease saving a lot of cap room. You dont pay good defensive. Third line wingers 3-3.5 million. He has to score which he doesn’t do enough of that for the Leafs, time to move on.

      • Well said