The latest on the Flyers, Blues and Capitals heading into Day Two of the NHL UFA market.
CSNPHILLY.COM: Tim Panaccio reports the Flyers ”are monitoring the situation in St. Louis where defenseman Alex Pietroangelo has not yet accepted his RFA qualifying offer sheet.” Panaccio feels it could take a lot to pry him out of St. Louis.
Sarah Baicker, meanwhile, reports the Flyers currently lack the cap space to sign winger Simon Gagne. “We don’t have a lot of space here to maneuver unless we were to make some kind of move”, said GM Paul Holmgren. “That’s something I don’t think any of us around here want to do right now, because we feel comfortable with our team.”
SPECTOR’S NOTE: As we all know, Holmgren’s comments regarding player moves are to be taken with a grain of salt. Speculation persists Braydon Coburn could be moved to free up cap space, part of which could be used to re-sign Gagne.
As for Pietrangelo, the Flyers certainly can’t afford to send him a big offer sheet, and acquiring him via trade will prove very costly (Coburn plus Sean Couturier or Brayden Schenn is my guess, as the Blues are seeking depth at center).
STLTODAY.COM: Jeremy Rutherford reports the Blues failed yesterday to land a quality center via free agency, but GM Doug Armstrong isn’t ruling out acquiring one. Mikhail Grabovski could be an option.
SPECTOR’S NOTE: The Blues also really want to re-sign Pietrangelo, but assuming they can’t and look to move him, the asking price will include a top-six center. Otherwise, Grabovski could indeed be a free agent option, as the market is rather thin now and he’s arguably the best available center now.
CSNWASHINGTON.COM: Chuck Gormley lists Mikhail Grabovski and Derek Roy as options for the Capitals to add a center to play on their top-two forward lines.
SPECTOR’S NOTE: With just over $8 million in cap space and RFAs Karl Alzner and Marcus Johansson to re-sign, the Capitals won’t have a lot of money to toss around for a second-line center.