NHL Free Agent and Trade News – September 30, 2011.

The Maple Leafs won’t cut Mike Komisarek…Barrett Jackman has yet to talk contract with the Blues…Sabres working to loan Ales Kotalik to Europe…Red Wings could sign Fabian Brunnstrom to a contract…Senators Filip Kuba under deadline to raise his game?

TORONTO SUN (VIA KUKLA’S KORNER) Lance Hornby reports the Toronto Maple Leafs won’t be cutting veteran defenseman Mike Komisarek and his $4.5 million salary by burying him in the minors.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: The Leafs weren’t likely keen to bury another high-salaried defenseman in the minors (Jeff Finger and his $3.5 million per season salary is already there). According to CapGeek.com, Komisarek has a no-movement clause in his contract during the season, meaning they couldn’t demote him to the minors unless he approved it. Figure the odds of that happening!

ST. LOUIS POST-DISPATCH: Jeremy Rutherford reports Blues defenseman Barrett Jackman is in the final year of his four-year, $14.4 million contract. He’ll be eligible for UFA status next summer. Neither side is ready to talk contract at this time but both sides believe he belongs in St. Louis.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: The Blues are the only club Jackman has played for in the NHL. Much will depend on his performance this season, but if there’s a willingness on both sides to get a deal done, the Blues could keep him off next summer’s UFA market.

TSN.CA: reports the Buffalo Sabres are attempting to work out an arrangement allowing them to loan winger Ales Kotalik to a European team. Earlier this week the club demoted him to their AHL affiliate after he cleared waivers.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: I don’t think any is surprised how this is playing out. The Sabres essentially did the Calgary Flames a favor by agreeing to accept Kotalik as part of the deal which brought them defenseman Robyn Regehr, but no one expected the Sabres would find another trade partner willing to take Kotalik. I suggested weeks ago the Sabres might try to loan him to Europe.

DETROIT FREE PRESS: Helene St. James reports Fabian Brunnstrom has had such a strong performance in Red Wings training camp and preseason that he’ll likely earn himself a contract with the club.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Brunnstrom arrived in the NHL three years ago in a much-ballyhooed free agent signing with the Dallas Stars, but failed to play up to expectations with the Stars. He was dealt to the Toronto Maple Leafs, and became an unrestricted free agent this summer when the Leafs opted not to qualify his rights. Looks like he’s made the most of his tryout opportunity with the Red Wings, and if he continues to shine throughout the season, he could finally play up to that hype which accompanied his signing with the Stars.

OTTAWA SUN: Bruce Garrioch reported Senators defenseman Filip Kuba hasn’t had a strong camp as hoped, noting he’s got a week to raise his game before the regular season opens.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: The Senators have tried unsuccessfully to find takers for Kuba via the trade market. One has to wonder if they would consider burying him in the minors at some point, and then place him on re-entry waivers in hopes another club might find him more palatable at half his $3.7 million salary.


  1. I figure that Komisarek will be in the press box for the better part of the season (barring injuries) as he looks to be the weakest defender of the 8 the leafs still have on their roster!

  2. I guess this will be the third city Brunnstrom will be a bust in. Well I guess now he’ll (sort of) help out Grand Rapids, maybe on a second line in the A.

  3. And I love how Hornby says that the only guy with a NMC on the Leafs, won’t be demoted. In other news, the sky is blue, and Jello is awesome. Thank you Captain odvious!

  4. Brunnstrom will get his shot with Detroit, don’t just count him out loaded with veteran swedes!

  5. ummmm now i want jello

  6. We are stuck with the worst signing of Burke’s carear. Komi will be a leaf for the remaining of his contract. Nobody wants this bum and his brutal contract unless we give up a good young prospect to unload him…

    Something similar to the deal involving Lombardi.

  7. redder, I just had some…it was glorious.

  8. Buff, you know better then me, but even I know the Wings are pretty deep in the skilled-euro forward department. I don’t see how Brunnstrom makes the team. Especially when a roster spot could be filled by Tatar, Jarnkrok, Emmerton, Pulkkinen or Sheahan. (last two maybe a little young) still, Brunnstrom falls down the list IMO. It seems to me that the top 9 are already set, where do you see Brunnstrom fit?


  10. tHANKS aRKY.

  11. For some reason I think Komisarek will have a half decent season. And he’ll still be hated because of his contract, but I think money aside he will be a solid contibuter as a depth defenseman.

  12. Could the Sens work on a loan for Kuba to a European team? Just like the Sabres are doing with Kotalik?

    Start working Murray…

  13. interesting fact that Brunnstrom was lined up to play on Datsyuk’s wing the next pre season games, looks like thats on the back burner as Pav may sit out the back to back games with the Leafs. Detroit will sign the Swede and I honestly think he will thrive in the Wings system.

  14. If anyone can pull a player from the scrapheap and make them into a valuable team member, it’s Detroit. Spector is right now to count Brunnstrom out yet.

  15. Brunnstrom reminds me of Michael Ryder; he’s there some games and is a force, and then a lot of other games, he’s invisible. Detroit might teach him that consistency.

  16. we’ll sign him and he’ll put it down watch!!!!iv wanted this cat the whole time,he’ll thrive in the Wings system!!!!