NHL Morning Rumor Mill – February 28, 2013.

The latest on Daniel Briere, Jay Bouwmeester, Stephen Weiss, Ben Bishop, Brenden Morrow, Ryan Whitney and Alex Kovalev.

NBC SPORTS PRO HOCKEY TALK: Jason Brough and Mike Halford discussed potential trade targets Daniel Briere, Jay Bouwmeester and Stephen Weiss. They’re not surprised teams are kicking the tires on Briere or the Flyers roster in general. Given Briere’s movement clause, they doubt he’ll be moved. They wonder if the Calgary Flames might shop Bouwmeester to a playoff contender if they fall out of contention themselves by the deadline, and speculate on Weiss’ trade status near the deadline.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Briere said he’s not interested in being dealt, but of course if Flyers GM Paul Holmgren pushed the issue he might be willing to waive his clause for the right club. Still, I don’t expect Briere will be dealt. If the Flames stay in playoff contention, Bouwmeester won’t be moved. If not, they might be able to convince him to accept a trade, but I think there would be more interest in Jarome Iginla.  If the Panthers haven’t gained ground soon, I believe the fire sale starts in mid-March, and Weiss could be among those on the block.

Could Bishop be shopped when Anderson returns?

Could Bishop be shopped when Anderson returns?

SI.COM: Allan Muir wonders if the Ottawa Senators shop Ben Bishop once Craig Anderson returns from injury.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Muir acknowledged Senators GM Bryan Murray isn’t in any hurry to move Bishop, whose solid play is one reason the injury-ravaged Senators have won five straight games. If the club is healthier by the trade deadline, Murray could consider it, but I don’t think it’s a certainty. 

DALLAS MORNING NEWS: Tim Colishaw believes the Stars acquisition of Erik Cole helps them financially, but it could spell the end of Brenden Morrow’s tenure with the club.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: With the Stars in playoff contention, I didn’t think they would make a move like the Ryder-for-Cole swap. I wouldn’t rule out Morrow being shopped by the trade deadline regardless of where they are in the standings.

EDMONTON JOURNAL: Jim Matheson reports there doesn’t seem to be a market for Oilers defenseman Ryan Whitney right now.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Is anyone surprised by this? 

RDS.CA: Renaud Lavoie reports the Florida Panthers could try to trade or demote Alex Kovalev.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Another non-surprise.  I don’t see anyone having interest in acquiring Kovalev, who is clearly well past his “best-before” date.


  1. How does trading a $3.5m player for a $4.5m player “help” you financially?

    • The only thing that makes sense would be that the Stars will reach the floor next year with Cole’s 4.5. Ryder is an UFA after this year.

      • Plus, Cole is bigger and stronger than Ryder. Dallas already has players that can score, they need some size that can throw the body and score…which is what Cole provides.

        • You’re kidding right?…. Cole isn’t really a bruising type hitter, a big guy with some speed but not exactly a physical force I think the stars will look to guys like Morrow and Benn…

          • YOU’RE kidding, right? Cole puts up 200 hits a year and can lay guys out pretty good too…and then when you compare him to Ryder, there is a clear upgrade in the physical department.

      • We’re actually at the cap-floor for 2013-14 with Cole and 17 total players signed, and with our backup goalies still unsigned, I don’t see his signing being for making the floor. It’s almost entirely about securing spots in the top-six. Roy may be re-signed, but Jagr, Morrow, and Ryder (whose demands would’ve been high) were most likely gone, leaving a gaping hole on the top-six. Whitney is here only for one more season, and so we needed that extra guy to help the kids like Smith, Fraser, Ritchie, Eakin, etc. etc. transition smoothly onto bigger roles. The move is a lateral move however, and didn’t make us any better per se.

        • True, but it did make your team more harder to player against physically, as Cole is a big guy who can throw his weight around…and score. But I think it should of been a straight up trade, not giving Montreal an extra bonus of a 3rd rounder.

          • I never said I was exactly happy with the trade or giving up the draft pic, did I? IMO, Joe Nieuwendyk is not an aggressive GM a la Chiarelli or Papa Lou.

  2. I think the Flyers keep Brier for sure. When they make the playoffs, he’s bound to get back into form. The Flames need to tear it down and start getting assets back for these players that aren’t going to get them anywhere. Whitney and Kovalev probably have negative trade value at this point, they won’t be moved.

    • If you stick with practices, Kovalev will AMAZE you. He is still extremely gifted and can deke around pretty much any player. The only drawback is he dipsy doodles so much that he never gets any closer to the net and eventually loses the puck.

      • I could see a playoff team maybe kicking the tires on adding Kovalev at the deadline if the price is CHEAP. I’m talking a conditional pick ONLY cheap… Give him one last shot at a run for the Cup and maybe he’ll heat up a bit. If he doesn’t, no big loss. Bury him in the press box and let him go back to the KHL next season.

    • I think Briere’s production has suffered due to the injury of Hartnell – don’t they play on a line?

      • Nope, and they havent normally in over a year. Hartnell played on a line with Giroux and Jagr most of last season. Briere has played on the G line while Hartnell was hurt as a winger.
        The problem is that A) he’s coming off of an injured wrist and B) hes naturally a center playing wing. He works better as a center, and the Flyers have 3 other gifted centers who are playing now

    • Written by Damien Cox…

    • Riiiiiiiiiiiiiiiight………Stamkos was coming, Richards was coming, Neal was coming
      _______ was coming, etc. etc., and we know how everyone of those turned out, don’t we?

      Maybe there’s a very slim chance Perry does end up there, but if Cox, Rox, Fox, Mox, and Box from the Toronto media throw enough crap on the wall, eventually something will stick. So far, nothing has stuck.

      • While I agree Cox has a bit of an ego at least he writes stories “outside the box” and against the grain as opposed to 99 percent of the other writers that bore you by stating the obvious, or write rubbish to try and boost their readership or just write a recap of last nights game.

        • I would argue that 100% of what Damien Cox writes is rubbish unless you’re a Leaf fan, and then it’s just pure fantasy.

        • How writing that Leafs should seek ___________ (insert big name player) is “outside the box” is beyond me considering that very topic is always a hot-button issue among Leafs nation. Like I said, Stamkos was coming to Leafs land, Richards was, Neal was, etc. etc….and none of them did.

  3. I have no idea how getting Cole helps the Stars financially. I think the Cole for Ryder deal gives Dallas another guaranteed body for next season, considering they were scheduled to potentially lose five of their top nine forwards come July (Ryder, Morrow, Roy, Jagr and Nystrom). Of the four still scheduled to become UFA’s, who is going to want to come back? I’m sure Roy will want to test the market since it will be his first time as a UFA. I think if Dallas falls out of the playoff race in the next 2-3 weeks, this will factor into them being big deadline sellers.

    • Because with Ryder at the end of his contract this year, he’ll likely demand and fetch more money.

    • i don’t see dallas as sellers. currently they hold the 7th spot in the west and are playing good hockey. doubt they’d be on the outside looking in come playoff time

      • That’s why I said “if Dallas falls out of the playoff race in the next 2-3 weeks”….

    • Roy might not be as eager to test the FA market as you think. I think it made a big impact on him that Dallas had him get shoulder surgery (and thus he got paid during the lockout) even though he’s only signed through this year. That’s something Buffalo wasn’t willing do to for the year before the trade.

  4. I also think that Flyers will keep Briere but I would love to move him for 1st round pick and decent d-sive prospect, some one NHL ready 1st or 2nd line potential. Not Tarasenko like but a step down. if you know what I mean.

  5. The Sens should be shopping Bishop now. Anderson will be back soon and Lehrner is the future so why not move him to goalie needy clubs for D. If Calgary is out and the Sens in the playoff hunt it would seem a Bishop for Bouwmeester deal is a no brainer for both clubs. Or Visnovsky (Siberia melts before he re-signs with the Isle) for Bishop.

    • Well thought out deal regarding Bishop for J-Bo.

      • I certainly hope you are not suggesting a one for one swap. This trade would work but ottawa would definately have to add something decent

        • tsk, spelling. Definitely

        • Something like maybe a second round pick not much more if that…

          • Let’s not forget that is a pretty big cap hit next year 6.6 mill whole Lotta salary going to the Senate may keep the asking price reasonable….

    • Agreed. When Karlsson went down I said that J-Bo should become the target for the Senators and the deal should surround Ben Bishop. However, I think it is a closer to deadline deal. Flames are still in the thick of the playoff race and while we know they are going to fall out, we have to wait for it to happen and Bishop is keeping the club alive and kicking right now. If the Senators are going to make the playoffs this year and keep playing well they will need to add a defenseman and some depth in goal scoring.

      Bishop + 2nd for Bouwmeester is where I think the deal would line up. With Spezza supposed to be back by the playoffs I don’t think they will go after a centre, but winger depth with someone like Brad Boyes or Brendan Morrow could fit that mold.

  6. Bishop for Iginla seems a better option. Iginla and Spezza have worked majic before. But it would be like the Sens trading Alfie. I just don’t see it. Jerome IS the Calgary Flames.

    • There’s been rumblings that if Calgary misses the boat this season they might blow things up and go for a rebuild. Iginla isn’t getting any younger, will he want to stick around for that? Or will he want to go to a contender and have a better shot to win a Cup? Calgary could certainly get a decent package from a playoff team willing to overpay.

      Ray Bourque was the face of the Boston Bruins, but he knew when it was time to move. I guess we will see if Iginla feels the same way.

      • It is commendable for players to want to stay with one organization there entire career, but as a child growing up you always dreamed of winning the stanley cup. As stated Ray Bourque understood this and I do believe Iginla will also. There is a definite differance between players born in North America and some of those born in Europe. Alfredsson would like to win a cup but he will remain in Ottawa because he believes it the right thing to do. Of course he didn’t even know about the stanley cup until he was in his late teens or later.

    • J-bo I could see but I think the flames would want more than just Bishop for Iggy… Some other teams I am sure would pay a very high price for that type of player….Boston Philly ( if they were in the hunt) I am a Leaf fan but imagine what the Habs may look like with a good vet like him there I am sure if Calgary decides to blow it up there will be all kinds of teams kicking some tires, some that we may not expect.

    • Iginla will move on but not to OTT. He’ll end up with a team like CHI where he has a grt chance of winning. If he chooses wisely he could win a cup and resign in CAL in the off season. He can do what Mat Sundin shouldve done. CAL fans should not be pissed if he does this because in reality he is still putting the team first like he has always done.

      • I doubt Ottawa would want to part with the package it would take to get Iggy…

    • Bishop for Iginla will never happen. The Flames will get a much better return for Iggy at the deadline, but I do think that if he gets traded (which may not happen), it’ll be to an Eastern team. My money’s on Pittsburgh.

  7. If Calgary makes the right moves this year, they should end up with three firsts, two seconds, and an up and coming goaltender like Bishop or Holtby.

    Then at least they’ll have a well to draw from, even if they don’t have Iggy, Kipper, or JayBo.

    • Not sure Washington is ready to give up on Holtby just yet.

    • Of course, the Flames never did play their hand of cards right. Instead of possibly coming out of the year with 3 1sts and 2 2nds, now they might walk out with 0 firsts because of that offer sheet to O’Reilly.

  8. As a flames fan, I want to see the team do well. However it’s become clearer more then ever we’ve got a mediocre squad. In a deep draft year I’d like to see us acquire some first round picks. Any means necessary….

    • with how good this draft is, they should move everyone they can for draft picks. for a team like calgary it only makes sense. the team is too old and slow. as said, this years draft is great, adding as many top 3 round draft picks as they can will only help the team. it may take 2 or 3 years for the kids to develop, but why not? if they dont they are only not taking advantage of a very deep draft and delaying the rebuild another year or two where the draft won’t be as deep. it is only stupidity now that is holding them back i believe

  9. Calgary acquires Brian Mcgratton… Oh boy….

    • Hey, at least its all up hill from there.
      I’m not sure Feester is the right GM in Calgary right now. He has not shown any willingness to make major re-build moves. I realise it is a dificult decision to make as it could cost his job, but if he has the go-ahead from ownership he should be on the phones now. Perhaps it is ownership that is the problem and Feesters hands are tied, but from any conversation I have heard involving Feester he doesn’t seem willing to make the appropriate moves.

      • It’s kinda sad really…they could have had a pretty good start if they blew it up a year or two ago when the rest of the hockey world knew they were going nowhere

        • I keep hearing over and over that Feaster says that the Flames are not a team that will blow it up. He believes that they are a trade or two away from being a playoff contender, and if someone in the head office decides to go the rebuild road then he will not be a part of it. I don’t think that there or many fans that would agree with Feaster on this one. I would rather dip in the standings for a few years to setup the future as opposed to being a perennial 9-10 team in the west.

  10. I don’t see Boston going after Briere. I think Hartnell or Simmonds are more a Boston type player.
    Boston isn’t going to change the top two lines its the third line that needs a quality left wing and possibly a complete overhaul maybe Kelly or Peverley could be moved. Both have extended contracts and are not living up to their pay. Don’t get me wrong they are good players and play both sides of the rink but not much production from that line.

    • I can see Boston being one of the teams that has inquired about Val Filppula. He can slot in at LW on the 3rd line and is versatile enough to play no.2 centre, top 6 wing, and on the PK and PP. I imagine Pittsburgh and NYR would also be interested.

  11. After the hard push from the Pens this summer to add Shane Doan, my best will be that the Penguins throw w/e they can at the Flames to try and pick up Iggy Pop and play him with Crosby. A Crosby-Iginla Malkin-Neal combo would be pretty deadly. But at the same time it maybe a team like Montreal who swoops in and is willing to pay that extra to go for the deep run. At the end of the day I would say IF the Flames were to fire sale and begin to move things I don’t expect it all at the deadline.

    J-Bo, Iggy Pop, maybe some minor guys like Babchuk & Butler. Kipper would probably be an offseason move, along with maybe Cammelleri & Stajan or something.

    • Pens end up with either Iginla or Perry, need some size up front and have defensive prospects and picks to deal …

      • Lol never heard of Iggy referred to as “Iggy Pop” you must not be from out west!

        • I really have my doubts about iginla going to the penguins. It doesn’t really matter what Iginla’s contract status is either. If he is a UFA at years end then they would give up way to much to get him and then not re-sign him. Then again if he is not a UFA this summer then he or some other big piece would have to be traded because Letang and Malkin are free agents and need to be re-signed. Same thing for Perry, the pens just can’t afford him unless they trade other high priced talent.

          • I disagree. The Pens have a touch over $9 million in cap room right now. Their only free agents this summer are relatively inexpensive ones named Cooke, Dupuis and Adams. They could easily…and I mean way easily…afford to acquire Perry (who makes about $5 million), then nearly double his salary on a one year deal for 2013-14 (assuming he’d be interested in a one year deal to pad his bank account, then be an unrestricted free agent again).

            But even if Perry wants a multiyear deal, bear in mind that Malkin isn’t going to get much of a raise for his next contract, because he already makes $8.7 million and there’s just not a ton of room to give him much more before you hit the max salary, even if he wants to make more than Crosby (which he opted not to do last time around). Letang could get up towards $7 million a year…but that’s only a $3 million raise for him.

            If the Pens were to give up, say, Chris Kunitz to Anaheim as part of a theoretical trade for Perry, that would also remove Kunitz’s cap hit for them ($3.7 million). The Pens actually have quite a bit of room at this point, and they have defense prospects (and defensemen in general) stacked up like cordwood to go along with (for example) Kunitz and a draft choice or two. If they want to go that route.

            If they do and are successful in trading for Perry, goalies in the Eastern Conference will likely not sleep easy for a while. The notion of defending Crosby/Perry followed by Malkin/Neal for a combined 35 or 40 minutes a game is not a pleasant one. And that’s not even getting into what their powerplay would look like…

    • i think pitt throws a first and a third/second or a first and a prospect and the deal gets done. i think calgary should shop kipper to a team like washington for their russian goalie and forsberg or a first. Jbow to ottawa for bishop and a second or to montreal for leblanc and a second. glencross to boston for a second or a third/fourth. tangs for a second to tampa. here is the one i think has a good chance to happen. giordano will be traded to st louis for rattie and allen. i know it is a weird one and will probably not come true. but holy cow it works out for both teams

      • What would the Habs want with J-bo? And that salary? No I think they learned their lesson lol…he would even be top 3 d-men there at almost 7mill…and give up a pick and a decent prospect for him? I’m pretty confident he won’t go to Montreal….

  12. One team that is desperately seeking someone to play at center is Vancouver and that is Briere’s natural position.
    The Canucks need both a second (now that Kesler is injured…again) and a third line center and have a glut of decent wingers to offer the Flyers, IF Briere would agree to a trade.
    I totally understand a player, especially a married player with children in school, not wanting to accept a trade as that would disrupt his family even more than it did him, and who wants drama at home? But then again if the GM/owner comes to you and asks you to “take one for the team” you just might consider it.
    A week or two at the most will see teams deciding if moves should be made to get ready for the playoffs or dumping salary should be the way to go.

    • lol, Toronto is in more demand of someone to play at center, than Vancouver.

      • I didn’t say that Toronto didn’t need a center I just said, “One team that is desperately seeking someone to play at center is Vancouver.”
        Even a leaf advocate should be aware that there are other teams in the league that need players other than Toronto.

        • Ahab, while I agree that the Canucks badly need a 3rd line centre that can play up a notch while Kesler’s on the mend (again), I doubt Briere is the answer. His cap hit is huge ($6.5m) which I can’t see the ‘nucks being able to afford without a Luongo deal being done first. Also, isn’t Briere divorced? 😉

          • Briere has steadfastly said he will not waive his no-trade option and wants to stay in Philadelphia, period.

          • I don’t follow the players to see if they are divorced or not or if they have a girl or boyfriend.

          • Agreed that Briere’s cap hit is more than the Canucks can take on without moving salary.
            The best the Canucks can do right now is to put Lapierre as the second line center, which I don’t believe is a step in the right direction.
            Not happy with what I see happening in Vancouver.

  13. Washington got a great player through waivers. Aaron Volpatti, who was one of the 2 or 3 Canuck players who showed grit, guts and determination every night, with a salary cap hit of just $600K, and they let him go.
    I realize that he was going to be a UFA after the season but how weak will the Canucks be now?
    With Malhotra and his $2.5 million gone and now Volpatti’s $600K I wonder what moves Gillis has in mind.

    • Probably looking for another goalie.to spend some money on….Gillis is an idiot

      • Very mature.

        • Tell me what has Gillis done to improve this team…was it tradeing Cody Hodgson (a pretty decent center doesn’t he need one of those?)….Or perhaps signing 2goalies to 10 mill a year and turning the team to a side show in a shortened season? Perhaps it was signing Sundin or acquiring Keith Ballard you’re right he’s a genius…

  14. Danny Briere.

    Mr.Clutch. I’ve been a hardcore Flyers fan for a long time and watch 82+ Flyers games a season and Danny Briere has been one of the classiest guys in the league. He’s semi-durable and no one can question his work ethic, especially during the playoffs….he has what so many other players want – an extra gear.
    The problem with Danny Briere is the fact that he’s an employee in a cap world and for a team that is traditionally against the cap ceiling, he’s considered “expendable”. He earned his 8-year contract and equally earned his full no movement clause. However, 6 years in and with many other young talented players waiting in line, he’s the odd man out. Not only that but he currently chews up 6.5 million on the salary cap with the next 2 years playing him 3 million and 2 million. It would cost the Flyers 3.33 million to buy him out and gain that 6.5 back on the cap, which in a cap world is a very good point. I’ve always like Briere but the Flyers need that money to get a big name blueliner they seek desperatly.

  15. I think Bishop stays until the draft… As long as he gets in the required # of games this season (at least 30 min. a game).. 9 I think, he retains his RFA status. No problem with him getting that now due to the Anderson injury.

    I don’t want the Sens to pay a huge price for a rental. Bryan Murray was on the Fan 590 yesterday.. and more or less said he won’t be doing much if anything at the deadline. Now that’s not saying he doesn’t make a hockey trade to get a young player.. like he did with Turris.. but I think rentals are definitely out.

    Without Karlsson and Cowen why bother.

    Also in regards to Perry… if he goes to UFA status I think 29 teams will be after him.

    But answer me this… when was the last time a superstar Cdn player signed as a UFA for a Cdn NHL team?

    They want more than anything to play FOR their Country.. but they don’t want to play IN their Country.

  16. Ouch Calgary signs Oriley to an offer sheet 10 mill 2 years

    • The Avs probably pretty happy to take that pick…if he signs it

      • What does feester have up his sleeve. Big trade in the works?

  17. Why is Visnovsky still an Islander?!?!?!

    Visnovsky to Ottowa for Bishop or to LA for Bernier. Some other small bits would be involved but that is the core of the deal.

    Calgary need to be agressive now and blow it up. They would be far better off long term making these deals:

    Kipper to Chicago (if Crawford is really sufering) for Stalberg, Roszival and a 2nd round pick
    Babchuk and a 2nd rounder to Ottowa for Bishop
    Iginla, Glenncross and MacDonald to Vancover for Luongo and Kassian (take is so low because Iginla will not commit to sign)
    J-Bo to Florida for Weiss.
    Re-sign Iginla in 13/14 for 2 year $11 mil deal plus some playoff bonuses.

  18. Daniel Briere appears to be content in Philadelphia and would not like to relocate. I know the Sabres faithful would like to have Briere back.