NHL Morning Rumor Mill – December 7, 2013.

The latest on the Islanders, Ryan Miller, Kyle Quincey and the Hurricanes.

Could Anton Khudobin hit the trade block?

Could Anton Khudobin hit the trade block?

SI.COM: Allan Muir believes the sooner the New York Islanders acquire a goaltender the better, citing Carolina’s Anton Khubodin, Anaheim’s Jonas Hiller and Buffalo’s Ryan Miller as possibilities. He doubts, however, they can land Miller while the asking price for Hiller (picks, prospects) could be too expensive at this point. He expects them to make a couple of smaller deals to acquire a goalie with long-term potential as well as a veteran blueliner…Muir doubts struggling forward Zack Kassian will get his chance to improve with the Canucks, believing most teams around the league would love to add his size and nastiness. The problem for the Canucks is any return for Kassian would be compared to what they gave up (Cody Hodgson) to get him.

CBS SPORTS: cited NHL columnist Chris Botta’s recent tweet claiming former Flyers coach Peter Laviolette is definitely a top candidate to replace Jack Capuano if the Islanders make a coaching change. Laviolette’s first head coaching gig was with the Islanders, who hired him in 2001. Botta also took to Twitter with the following: “Told GMs have started to check in with Snow re: Vanek, Nabokov, AMac. They’re not available yet. Garth looking to add pieces.”

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Even if the Isles made a pitch for Miller and the Sabres were willing to move him there, I don’t believe he’d approve of the deal. Hiller’s not going anywhere with Viktor Fasth currently sidelined until January. The best option could be Khudobin or his Hurricanes teammate Justin Peters. The Isles have resisted firing Capuano, who can’t be blamed for the crappy goaltending and the injuries to his blueline. Sadly, coaches sometimes end up as scapegoats for poor roster decisions by management. I don’t see how Laviolette improves their current roster.  Snow won’t be a seller until closer to the trade deadline if the Isles are still out of playoff contention by then. There will be interest in Vanek and Andy MacDonald, but I don’t know who would want Nabokov, as he’s now past his “best-before” date. As for Kassian, if he can packaged into a deal which lands the Canucks an affordable scoring winger, they’ll consider it.

THE BUFFALO NEWS: Mike Harrington reports Sabres goalie Ryan Miller appreciates the faith coach Ted Nolan has placed in him as a player to build around, but he also noted the new contract for NY Rangers goalie Henrik Lundqvist (seven-year, $59.5 million) “sets the standard” now for free agent goalies. Miller also had a “getting to know you” discussion with new Sabres president of hockey ops Pat LaFontaine. He also said talk of accelerating the club’s rebuilding process isn’t enough to convince him to stay, as he needs to see results.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: In other words, if the Sabres are willing to offer up seven years and nearly $60 million, Miller will consider it; otherwise, he’s outta here. Considering Miller will now be the best goalie available in next summer’s UFA market, he’ll find a club willing to invest long-term in him.

CAROLINA HURRICANES; In a recent interview, Hurricanes GM Jim Rutherford said he doesn’t intend to place Anton Khubodin or Justin Peters on waivers, knowing they would be claimed by a rival club. He admits that’s resulted in teams contacting him about trading one of his goalies, which he could make a decision on within a week. He also acknowledged trade talks had heated up over the past couple of weeks because of his unhappiness with his club’s performance of late, adding he wouldn’t be surprised if a trade developed over the next couple of weeks.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Hat tip to GJ Berg for the link. Khudobin or Peters will be shopped, possibly packaged with veteran blueliner Tim Gleason. The Islanders desperately need goaltending help, and while Khudobin and Peters aren’t proven starters, they’re probably better than what they’ve got now.

DETROIT FREE PRESS: Helene St. James believes the Red Wings should trade defenseman Kyle Quincey in order to allow promising Danny DeKeyser to come off LTIR sooner.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Quincey’s mediocre performance won’t help his trade value, but there could be a couple of clubs out there (hello there again, Islanders!) who might be interested.


  1. Dang it hope the Isles dont fire Cappy I want Laviolette to wait for a bit more high profile job which hopefully becomes available in the next month or so…lol see what I did there?

    • Where do you have in mind?

      • Rhymes with Chiefs….

  2. Sorry Miller, but at your age no contending team is going to give you 7 years $59.5 mill, even with the cap going up its not going to happen, especially the California teams. The only teams desperate enough to do that are teams like the Isls and Oilers.

    • I would not under estimate the GMs ability to over pay during the FA period.

    • It was only said that it would take that to stay in Buffalo, & I’m pretty sure the Oilers are no where near that desperate. Comprehend what is being written!!!!!!!

      • Gordoil…..I understood perfectly what was written, did you? Miller syas that Henriks contract “sets the standard” now for UFAs. To me that says he expects something in that ball park, re-read and get back to me, clown. and yes the PATHETIC Oilers are that desperate!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    • Never underestimate the stupidity of Holmgren

      • and exactly why would Holmgren be interested at all in Miller

        Mason is better, younger, and they’ll be able to sign him for less than what Miller wants

        • Holmgren likes big names. Mason has only played a third of the year. If he falters in the second half? You can bet your savings account Holmgren will be I on the bidding for miller. The Flyers are like the Rangers, they like to be in on everything.

          • what big name goalies has Holmgren gone after?

            Bryzgalov? that was all Snider. he told Holmgren to get the best available because he didn’t want to go through the goalie circus that was the 2011 playoffs with Bob and Leighton

            Before that, they never had a serious goalie, which has been part of the problem with the Flyers

        • Well the only thing I could see is that mason isn’t a proven goaltender yet miller is

          • Mason has been one of the best in the league since the trade to the Flyers. only 25. Rookie of the Year and has a lot of experience for his age

            the change of scenery has been good for him. Hasn’t allowed more than 3 goals in a game as a Flyer. steady, composed, and confident in every game. they’ll be trying to re-sign him after January 1

            there is no reason to believe he falters in the 2nd half. when the team was playing its worst hockey, he was at his best. they’re now playing a lot better under Berube and attribute the fact that they’re in the playoff race to Mason. He’s been their MVP in the first 1/3 of the season, no doubt about it

          • Oh Mason today

            4 GA,
            .846 SV%
            And the loss

          • Thanks Man_Oss well said and you the man.

        • @jango

          Mason better then Miller?

          That’s the dumbest thing I’ve heard since Kadri for Monahan.

          • Shhhhh! This might get funnier.

          • yep

            at 20 years old, Mason had a year just about as good as Miller’s Vezina year….not much difference

            Mason’s had 10 shut-outs in a season. Miller’s best is 6

            Miller was just coming into the league at 25. Mason already has 259 GP at 25

            Miller is 33. Mason is 25

            Miller thinks he’s worth $8M a year. Flyers will get Mason for $5M

            GAA…Mason #10, Miller #34

            Save %….Mason #6, Miller #19

            Mason is better, dope

          • All those stats are great, but lets wait and see how he does after another 8 years and 250 games.

            Please note that all but 27 of those games Mason has hovered around a GAA of .900. He has played well for the last 27 games!!! That’s a perfect comparison. Give your head a shake!!

            I won’t even comment of your lots of experience at 25 remark.

          • Jes–

            oh yah Mason today

            you missed the part where Hartnell said without Mason, it would have been 9-1

            the 1st goal was a 1-time tip by Seguin on a 2-on-1 break

            the next 2 were deflected off Flyer players

            Mason could have stopped only the 4th

            Berube said they wasted another great effort by Mason and the PK. the PK killed 7:00 straight in the 1st period and then they got another 2:00 minor, so played more than half the 1st period short-handed….Flyer only goal was SH

            1st time as a Flyer that Mason has given up more than 3

            and i know Miller has never given up more than 3

            still no comeback to the actual stats, keep working on it bro

            and to the dude who said he didn’t want to address the fact that Mason had 259 GP at age 25, it means Mason was good enough at age 20 to get and hold a starting job in the NHL….good enough at age 20 to win Rookie of the Year and put 10 shut-outs and put up numbers as good as Miller’s Vezina year, which came when Miller was 30

            Mason all day long better than Miller

            the most important fact that you’re over-looking is the fact that players get no credit for past stats. it’s what they do moving forward. Miller’s best days are behind him. Mason’s best days are ahead, as evidenced by the turn-around by the change of scenery…..Flyer MVP this year, the only reason they’re still in the playoff race

          • Ron was right…it gets funnier.

          • Lol omg

            Here you are talking about how good Mason was at a young age and the whole 10 shutouts then you go on to say it’s all about what they are going to do going forward. Seriously guy learn to debate instead of contradicting yourself. This was honestly the dumbest thing that has been said on here. Your the champ man. If any of those “hockey analysts” on TV read your post then they’d be laughing at you too. Mason better then Miller? I take back everything I said about the TO fans on here. I’d put a lot of goalies ahead Mason and I’m sure many on here would. I doubt he makes a top 15 list of the best goalies in the league.

            And you can’t predict what anyone’s going to do from a year from now.

            Lol and why does it matter what Berugay and Hartnell said in a post game interview? When was the last time a player chewed out his teams goalie in a post game interview. There not going to air there dirty laundry out in public man.

            There’s a lot of smart people on this board and what you are saying while contradicting yourself every step of the way is just plain dumb man. Sorry to have to put it bluntly.

          • @Jango

            Mason played for the Blue Jackets. They sucked while he was there.
            He took the blame for being an average goalie. He faced 1500 – 1600 shots each year and he was bad. Hovering around .900 GAA.

            This may be tough to hear, but they traded him for a bag of pucks and a mouth guard.

            He has played better, but he has only been better for 28 games. Hardly a record to hang on to. My guess is he won’t get $5 mill per. Why?


            Miller has played well for 500. He faces the most shots of any goalie in the league. He is on pace to face 2200 shots this year. Mason is on pace for 1800. You are comparing apples to oranges.

            Take off you Philly goggles and take a look around at the real world.

  3. What’s the scouting report on Andrew macdonald?? I don’t really pay much attention to isle but he is a shot blocker and decent defensively if I’m remembering correctly?

    • Plays tones of minutes over the past couple years. Albeit on a team thats not exactly deep with good experienced D.

      • I don’t think he’d be available. The Islanders are in need of good D. That’s like saying Oilers are ready to give up Ference.

        But back to the question he’s pretty good. Maybe not as good as he seems though since he’s playing on a team with no names on the back end.

    • McDonald during thsi season was top 3 in minutes played for ALL defensemen …very nimble… smooth skater…. is a thinker and takes the man before the puck …not overly physical but his smarts out performs that aspects of his game …he is a work horse right now …not a big point producers …more shut down guy …drafted 160 th overall

      • I would think of trading trade Reimer and piece for him and piece if given the chance !

        • I think if the Islanders brought in a Laviolett or Maurice or Boucher you would see a big difference ….Snow will buckle …and make a significant trade for another Goalie not named Miller or Hiller !!!

          • All over the map…

            Lavi = very open north south style of game

            Boucher = trap (boring) defensive game

            As Lyle stated this team is really hurting on D and has just terrible goaltending hardly a coaches fault, Laviolette really dosent go well with a team with little D and no decent goaltending,I think we have seen that movie before, and Im not so sure Boucher is an NHL level head coach.

        • I would think the Isles already inquired about Remier and didn’t like the asking price. His age and experience so far is a perfect fit for the young Isles.

          • Reiner for macdonald would be over payment no? Macdonald is a Ida next year he’s a rental

          • Doubt Reim’s is going anywhere until Bernier supplants himself as the guy. Maybe this summer since Reim’s is still restricted. The asking price on him will drop significantly with Miller and a few others out there and with him having arbitration rights. If the NYI can wait until the summer they could get a deal on him.

          • reimer to nyi for bailey, nilsson and prospect …anyone like it?

          • @ I hate Crosby

            You making a joke? Or are you serious?

  4. Khubodin is a solid goalie IMO. Boston shouldn’t have left him to. If he had a chance on a decent team he could do good job.

    • Yep but Rask is pretty durable so far in his career, I would think maybe you sign him to a cheaper deal in hopes of maybe moving him for a missing piece at the deadline if Rask was ready for the run. Just to let him walk unless you are really pressed for capspace (with the cap dropping I guess everyone was but still.)

      • Yeah that was the thing. They let him walk and then sign a guy with a almost identical cap hit but not as talented. Strange move. My buddy at work (massive Bruins fan, yes we get along even tho I’m a Habs fan lol) and never understood that. I know it’s not a terrible move but to just let him leave didn’t make sense to us at the time.

  5. The Isle problem is not their goalies…its their D and Management.
    This year, they began to loose when Visnovsky was injured and when Snow traded best Tavares friend and first line teamates Moulson (they were .500 and also the BEST power play in the league with Moulson, but the last in the NHL after the trade). Moulson was also an asset in the room.
    I saw every game and i can tell you that there is no goaltender that can change this team. We need to look at the source…i mean, management is so poor with Snow since he began as GM. This is one of the only GM in the NHL that never address the needs of his team and always loose good player for nothing at the trade deadline (see free agents).
    D is a major problem with Isles since he is there and was also a problem before with Milbury. In fact, Isle dont have a descent GM since Don Maloney in 1993. Don’t need to talk about Bettman that sold the Isles to an owner that knew nothing about hockey, fired an experienced GM after 24hrs and hired a goalie as GM !
    The main problem remain the team management since de 90’S…there was Milbury era and its now Wang and Snow era, a pathetic tandem…

    • Agree I think Snow has been given way to much time to prove his worth. Time to move him out.

      • snow does not have final say. wang does and tells him to keep budget low since he “lost” millions in the team thus far and still pays yashin /dipietro contracts. Wang wants to make money only…. Here on LI you hear about it all the time…. Snow is not great but Wang seems to be telling him no on some thing he wants to do to make it better. Although that Vanek deal was a BIG screw up on Snows part.

  6. what’s the deal with this cat Zack Cassian on the Canuck?

    is he on the trading block? if so, why?

    sounds like a great combination of size and attitude and was a 1st round pick. understand he might have some scoring ability

    • Kassian isn’t consistent – yes he is a big body, can play physical and has skill – he’s also been given numerous opportunities to play on top lines. Gels for a bit, then disappears. Buffalo stole Hodgeson from the Nucks.

      • Kassian to NYI for Eric Boulton 3rd rd pick? lol

      • maybe a change of scenery would help. look what it did for Mason in Philly

        sounds like a Flyer. wouldn’t mind seeing him in orange & black

      • Another one of Darcy’s brilliant moves!

    • Kassian is a kid. Canucks fans just keep harping on what Vancouver gave up for him – not his fault. He needs time to become a true power forward. If David Booth starts to score goals, Kassian gets to fly below the radar for a while.

      • I wouldn’t bet my mortgage on that. Kassian came into the league as an undisciplined kid, toned down his game, and now finds he’s having trouble keeping up with the big boys. Usually forwards mature quicker than defensemen. It is possible he is an exception to the rule, but like I said, I wouldn’t bet on it.

        • Na a power forwards game takes time to develop. It was an awful trade, but Id hesitate saying he wont be a decent NHL hockey player.

  7. I like Miller but trade him by the dead line. By the time this team is ready to contend Miller will be on the down slide. Draft picks are nice but it’s time to get some warm bodies that can contribute now and moving forward. If 8 mil is the standard, I’d rather pay it to a goal scorer or stud D-man something Buffalo doesn’t have.

    • Lol. Hilarious name.

      The Sabres are in kind of a crappy spot eh? New owner came in and the GM spent a ton of cash for guys that aren’t panning out. Then he had to trade his good assets to get a decent return (and I think that pominville trade and gaustad trades were the result of Jedi mind tricks to pull what he did out of minny and Nash). Now he’s stuck with he over paid under achieves and he gets canned. Now they want it move their goalie and they have no one near his level to replace him. Goalies like miller are tough to get, look around the league and you will see he’s still a top 10-12 goalie. But no one is going to pay out he nose right now because good teams have good goalies. The miller trade will happen at the dead line and probably to a team that signs him as part of the trade or a good team has a injury to their starter. Kind of a tough trade to make to ensure you get the most you can. At least you guys can look forward to having Ekblad!

      • I think Regier made some really good moves – IMO the Sabres became complacent. Trading Roy for Ott, Gaustad for a #1, unloading Leopold and Regehr for draft picks and Pommer for Larssen, Hackett and a draft pick and his final move – Vanek for Moulsen and a draft pick – aren’t too shabby. To me, Rolston was in way over his head – so I welcomed the change. I like some of what Nolan has done – refocus on the basics and work hard. I don’t consider Hodgeson a #1 center, but I do consider him top 6. I think most people will be surprised with Leino – we’ve been used to his “lack of performance” for the past couple of years. We saw glimpses of his talent, but injury and being misplaced by his coach didn’t allow him to really contribute. The new philosophy has given more playing time and confidence to Stafford and Myers – seems to me we all were calling for them both to be traded.

        We do have some assets that we can trade – Miller, Ennis, Moulson, Ott, draft picks and prospects. We can also take back some salary. There are some tells with Miller – using Lundquist to set the bar is misleading because there are two factors that override that statement – closer to the wife and joining a contender.

        Miller can nix a trade to 8 teams – get the list and move on. Find a team not on the list and do a deal. Holding “Get to know you talks” is smoke and mirrors. Patty, either you are getting to know what teams he won’t go to and getting to know what teams are interested in making a deal – or your getting to know what being a GM entails.

        • The truth is Darcy was near genius status with the trades he pulled off. I wish he would be the guy dealing Miller, I would have no doubt to the fact that we would get a lot in return.

          Nolan should be gone by next season. His penchant for intruding into the GM’s role hasn’t gone away, as is testified by his “We should build around Miller” comment. Building around Miller is a stupid idea on many levels.

          Nolan has injected some life into this team, but you can’t make a silk purse out of a sow’s ear, as they say.

          Regarding personnel, they should keep Ott, trade Moulson, Miller, Stafford. Ennis should be traded when his stock is higher. Keep bringing in stop-gap guys like D’Agostini while players like Adam, Girgensons, and Pysyk develop.

          Draft Reinhart and try like hell to get McDavid in 2015.

          • Yes Darcy got great value, but he made several mistakes too.
            1. The team has been needing a #1 center for years
            2. He depleted the D and didn’t replace them.
            3. He got picks for many stars which created a lack of ability on the current team. His drafting record has been less than stellar.
            4. He assumed the fans would be ok with a lengthy rebuild. They were/are not.
            5. Neither was the owner.
            6. He made a slip up when he used the word “suffering” to describe the team.

  8. There is so much opportunity for Bryan Murray to improve the Sens right now I am almost salivating. Two trades that I would consider doing if I was Ottawa.

    To NYI: G Craig Anderson, D Joe Corvo
    To OTT: G Evgeni Nabokov, D Andrew MacDonald

    Islanders improve goaltending, Senators improve defense

    To VAN: F Milan Michalek, 3rd Round
    To OTT: F David Booth, F Zach Kassian

    The Sens get some much needed size depth and maybe Booth regains form. Canucks get a better scorer and at worse a shorter contract.

    • That first trade is pretty fair, but in the second one aren’t the Sens taking too much salary back?

  9. I also think it would be smart for Carolina to try and ship G Cam Ward over to the Islanders, they could take Nabby and either MacDonald or Bailey back for him and then add to their goalie depth or leave themselves with some options.

  10. Forget Miller he is going to be way over priced go after Khoudobin he will be a good number1 I was mad when the Bruins let him go for nothing also I said last year the only reason the Isles lost out was because of a washed up Naby why Snow brought him back is a mystery