The latest on Wayne Simmonds, Nail Yakupov, Nazem Kadri, Michal Neuvirth and Jaromir Jagr, plus updates on the Penguins, Hurricanes and more.
EDMONTON JOURNAL: In response to questions from his readers, Jim Matheson doubts the Philadelphia Flyers will move Wayne Simmonds, who was linked to the Oilers Ales Hemsky back in November. He also claims Oilers GM Craig MacTavish intends to stick with sophomore winger Nail Yakupov.
SPECTOR’S NOTE: The Flyers like Simmonds’ size and physical skills as much as his scoring touch. He’s a prototypical Flyers forward. Yakupov is probably the Oilers best trade chip but they’re reluctant to part with him.
WINNIPEG FREE PRESS: Gary Lawless claims Pittsburgh Penguins GM Ray Shero seeks a replacement for injured winger Pascal Dupuis and is said to be interested in Jets’ forwards Andrew Ladd, Evander Kane and Blake Wheeler. Lawless believes Shero would have to put together a significant offer to pry one of those guys away from the Jets. The Penguins have depth in young defensemen but the Jets want to add forwards, not shed them.
SPECTOR’S NOTE: I don’t believe the Jets wish to part with Ladd, Kane or Wheeler and doubt the Penguins can make a suitable offer for either guy.
SPECTOR’S NOTE: Leafs coach Randy Carlyle yesterday took Kadri’s line to task for not playing up to expectations and threatened to demote Kadri to the third line if things didn’t improve. Kypreos is now the third pundit since Sunday to claim the Leafs are shopping Kadri. It’s also rumored the Leafs are willing to entertain offers for Jake Gardiner. Wonder if GM Dave Nonis would consider packaging Kadri and Gardiner? That would garner considerable interest.
NEWSOBSERVER.COM: Chip Alexander reports the Carolina Hurricanes recent trade of Kevin Westgarth to Calgary might not be the only move GM Jim Rutherford has in store for his struggling team. Moving one of his backup goalies (Justin Peters or Anton Khubodin) is a possibility. Rutherford also noted the salary cap system is making it tough to find a trade partner and a deal to help his club.
SPECTOR’S NOTE: Rutherford was also believed shopping Tim Gleason, Tuomo Ruutu and Jiri Tlusty. A suitable shakeup deal, however, might not come until closer to the March trade deadline, which will be too late to help the Hurricanes.
CSNWASHINGTON.COM: Chuck Gormley reports the agent for Capitals backup goalie Michal Neuvirth would like to see his client traded to a team where he’ll get more playing time. Neuvirth has played in only seven games this season and has been knocked down in the goalie pecking order by the solid play of Philipp Grubauer, who was called up to replace Neuvirth when he was sidelined recently by an injury.
SPECTOR’S NOTE: Neuvirth joins Martin Erat among the Capitals who have requested a trade. Defenseman Dmitry Orlov was another but he’s reconsidered since receiving more playing time.
NJ.COM: Rich Chere reports Jaromir Jagr won’t ask the Devils to be moved by the trade deadline. Jagr expects a better second half for he and his team.
SPECTOR’S NOTE: Jagr lacks a no-trade clause so the Devils could trade him if they wish without his permission. Considering his strong play this season, that’s not likely to happen.
TORONTO SUN: Former Maple Leafs forward Leo Komarov would love to return with the Leafs. He’s currently playing in the KHL but hopes the Leafs will sign him to another contract. They own his rights until July, when he becomes an unrestricted free agent.