The latest on Roberto Luongo, P.K. Subban, Ryan O’Reilly, Yannick Weber, Mathieu Perreault and more.
TORONTO SUN: Steve Simmons believes last night’s shaky goaltending by Ben Scrivens and James Reimer during the Maple Leafs last two games, including a 7-4 loss to the NY Islanders, should push the Leafs management to seek improvement between the pipes in the form of Vancouver’s Roberto Luongo.
NBC SPORTS PRO HOCKEY TALK: cited an interview by Canucks GM Mike Gillis with TEAM 1040 in Vancouver in which he said he’d have no problem trading Luongo to a Western Conference team for the right offer. For now, however, Gillis is comfortable retaining Luongo and dismissed media suggestions doing so was unfair to Luongo and Cory Schneider.
SPECTOR’S NOTE: If I’ve said it once, I’ve said it a dozen times: there’s no issues between Luongo and Schneider over this situation. Luongo has been the consummate teammate and a true professional, and Schneider has also handled it well. As for the Maple Leafs, Nonis won’t panic and I expect he’ll give Scrivens and Reimer a little more time, but if it becomes apparent goaltending remains the Leafs weak link, Nonis won’t hesitate to act. It remains to be seen, however, if Luongo will still be available when the Leafs new GM is ready to make his move.
TSN.CA: Bob McKenzie recently suggested the contract standoff between the Montreal Canadiens and P.K. Subban could end with the defenseman being dealt. “They’re just too far apart on the term of the contract – P.K. wants long, the Canadiens want two years – and they’re probably at least $2.5 to $3 million per year apart on where they want to be” said McKenzie. “Ultimately I think this ends up in a trade.”
RDS.CA: Renaud Lavoie reports another Canadiens defenseman, Yannick Weber, wants to have the chance to play, either with the Canadiens or another NHL team. Weber hasn’t requested a trade and is a restricted free agent this summer. Weber has yet to play a game with the Habs this season.
SPECTOR’S NOTE: Of the two Canadiens defensemen, I expect it’ll be Weber who gets dealt. Habs GM Marc Bergevin has repeatedly stated he’s not shopping Subban, who has also repeatedly stated his preference is to remain a Hab. Bergevin and Subban’s agent Don Meehan are slated to have face-to-face meetings this weekend in hopes of advancing negotiations. Ultimately, I believe the two sides will reach agreement on a new contract sooner or later.
DENVER POST: Adrian Dater reports Colorado Avalanche center Ryan O’Reilly has left his KHL team and returned to North America to receive treatment for a foot injury, but he’s no closer to a new contract with the Avs.
SPECTOR’S NOTE: Between Subban and O’Reilly, I think the former is re-signed before the latter. The Avs and O’Reilly seem further apart than Subban and the Canadiens.
OTTAWA SUN: Bruce Garrioch reports the Edmonton Oilers have interest in Senators backup Ben Bishop, but the Sens won’t shop him until they’ve had a chance to see how he performs in game action, which could come this weekend. They also want to see if his market value might improve once Roberto Luongo is dealt.
SPECTOR’S NOTE: There’s also speculation the Oilers have interest in Luongo, but it appears they want to be patient with Devan Dubnyk, who rebounded well from a poor game against the San Jose Sharks with a 30-save performance in the Oilers 2-1 win over the Kings last night. If the Oilers pursue Bishop, it’ll be as a backup for Dubnyk.
WASHINGTON TIMES: Stephen Whyno reports Capitals center Mathieu Perreault denied he told Le Journal de Montreal in a recent interview he might seek a trade if he didn’t receive more playing time. “All I want is to play. I wanna be here. I don’t wanna go anywhere. If you guys read the article in French it doesn’t say that I asked for a trade. Never.”