NHL Morning Rumor Mill – June 22, 2013.

The latest on Ilya Bryzgalov, Jonathan Bernier, James Neal, Drew Stafford and more.

Ilya Bryzgalov's status with the Flyers remains uncertain.

Ilya Bryzgalov’s status with the Flyers remains uncertain.

COURIER-POST.COM/PHILLY.COM: Randy Miller reports agent Ritch Winter, who represents Flyers goalie Ilya Bryzgalov, said GM Paul Holmgren told him the club had “no current plans” to buy out his client, though Winter acknowledged things could change. Frank Seravalli believes Winter sounds desperate, and claimed Bryzgalov bragged to some teammates earlier this year he would be bought out.

CSNPHILLY.COM: John Boruk also reported on the ongoing uncertainty over Bryzgalov’s status with the Flyers, and mused on possible replacement if he were bought out. He suggested Tim Thomas on a one-year deal as one option, Roberto Luongo (whom he believes the Canucks will buy out) and Minnesota’s Niklas Backstrom as others. He’s not optimistic over the Flyers chances of landing LA Kings goalie Jonathan Bernier.

He also doubts the Flyers trade for Phoenix’s Keith Yandle, but suggested the possibility of trying once again to pry Shea Weber away from the Predators, claiming there’s “rumblings” they could shop Weber on July 23, the one-year anniversary of their matching the Flyers offer sheet. Boruk also believes the Flyers could pursue Anaheim Ducks winger Bobby Ryan, and listed Nathan Horton, Jarome Iginla and David Clarkson as attractive free agent targets.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: If the Flyers can land a suitable replacement for Bryzgalov via trade (like Bernier), I don’t believe they’ll hesitate one second to buy him out. As for Weber, Predators GM David Poile has repeatedly stated he has no intention of trading his captain, citing he and Pekka Rinne as the foundation of his team. The Flyers might be able to land Ryan if the Ducks believe they must move him to shed salary space, but that’s not a certainty. Horton, given his injury history, could be a risky free agent signing for the Flyers or anyone else. Iginla’s age means they should only approach him if he’s interested in a short-term deal for no more than $5 million per, while Clarkson’s value could be driven beyond the Flyers price range.

NBC SPORTS PRO HOCKEY TALK/SPORTSNET.CA: Recent reports suggested the Toronto Maple Leafs, Philadelphia Flyers and Minnesota Wild are the only clubs remaining in the bidding for LA Kings goalie Jonathan Bernier. The Kings are prepared to take the best offer presented by one of these three.

STARTRIBUNE.COM: Michael Russo reports Wild GM Chuck Fletcher would like to re-sign Nicklas Backstrom, but he is considering other options, including Bernier. The NY Islanders are also believed still in the bidding for the Kings backup. It’s believed the Kings want to move Bernier prior to the June 30th NHL Draft.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: It’s possible Bernier could be dealt at some point next week. The Flyers would love to land him for obvious reasons (see above), and he’d certainly be a good fit with the Wild and Islanders. As for the Leafs, while I understand Dave Nonis’ desire to improve at every position, I think he’s wasting assets on Bernier which could be better used to address more obvious issues (center, defense) elsewhere in the lineup. For me, James Reimer’s performance this season establishes him as their starter. If Nonis wants to bring in an experienced backup, fine, but adding Bernier will only create a goaltending controversy which will prove an unnecessary distraction next season.

CSNWASHINGTON.COM: Chuck Gormley noted Daniel Briere’s upcoming availability via free agency, considering the pros and cons of adding him to the Capitals roster.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Briere will certainly attract considerable attention in this summer’s UFA market, where his buyout makes him an affordable option.

TRIBLIVE.COM: Rob Rossi noted recent reports suggesting the Penguins could shop winger James Neal, and claimed the Pens have no intention of moving Neal.

EDMONTON JOURNAL: Jim Matheson (via David Staples) still believes the Oilers will try to acquire winger Drew Stafford from the Buffalo Sabres. Staples wondered if the Sabres might be up for a Stafford-for-Ales Hemsky swap?

SPECTOR’S NOTE: If the Oilers are interested in Stafford, I believe Sabres GM Darcy Regier would be willing to deal him, but I doubt he’ll want Hemsky in return. The Sabres are rebuilding with affordable youth, so I don’t see them taking on Hemsky’s $5 million salary for next season.

DETROIT FREE PRESS: Helene St. James reports the Red Wings will look at compliance buyouts if no trades are available before the draft to free up cap space. Mikael Samuelsson could be a candidate, though that depends on if he’s medically cleared during the buyout period. Carlo Colaiacovo could be another candidate. Todd Bertuzzi could be another, though St. James believes his size and physical play could make him worth retaining next season.

CSNBAYAREA.COM: Kevin Kurz reports the San Jose Sharks are in talks with pending UFA goalie Alex Stalock, which could signal the end of Thomas Greiss (also a pending UFA) as the Sharks backup.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: There’s speculation the Predators could target Greiss as their backup if he hits the UFA market.


  1. Re: The Leafs and Bernier, if the Leafs grab this guy and make him the starter, they have effectively slapped Reimer int he face and told him he’s not good enough. This will crush him, IMHO, and cause him to want to leave town. If he can repeat his performance from last season even with a small drop in Save%, he is still deserving of the number 1 role. This seems extremely foolish.

    Re: The Sabres trade with Edmonton. As a fan of the Sabres I am all for trading Stafford, but there is zero need to take back a guy like Hemsky. This one of those stupid trades to try and dump a bad player onto someone else. A better trade value might be a 2nd round pick or a prospect and a 4th rounder, but Hemsky would be a total waste for the Sabres.
    That being said, I expect Darcy will make this trade as soon as he can……

    • First of all concerning Bernier:
      1. Is it never a bad thing to have to many good players. Depending on what the Leafs give up, Bernier is an asset not a scrub. He has value.
      2. Reimer and Bernier have completely different styles. Reimer is bigger and more of a drop and block style goalie, while Bernier is a little smaller and plays more of a hybrid with a lightning fast glove hand. Two different looks for NHL shooters. That’s a good thing.
      3. If Nonis does acquire Bernier, I will give him the benefit of the doubt that he has a master plan in place, using 1 of Reimer/Scrivens/Bernier plus whatever other asset to move up in the draft and acquire the center his is after (perhaps)
      4. If we are trading wingers like Kulemin or Frattin to obtain Bernier, no big deal, wingers are the easiest pieces to replace, Bickell/Dupuis/Clarkson/Horton etc. on the UFA list. Plus Nonis might have the scoop on other wingers like Clutterbuck who will be moved for cap reasons.

      I will reserve judgement on the first move of the off-season until I see how Nonis plays this out.

    • Nonsense. Darcy has more sense than you or those silly writers at the Buffalo News give him credit for. If anything he may trade Stafford and his 8th to move to 7th in the draft if someone they really want is still available.

      • I agree with Kurt. Until the whole trade is known (if it happens) I will judge it then.
        Everyone saying leafs need a centremen not a goalie well you tell me who is trading one? Not happening especially for the price of Bernier who everyone keeps saying is an unproven goalie. So you want an established #1 centre for what your going to pay for an unproven goalie.

        • Agreed and riddle me this also if there was a game 8 or it was the regular season and your team blows a lead like game 7 you coming back with Rimer the next game? How confident in him are you now?

      • The last line regarding Darcy was sarcasm..thank you very much.

        • @ bullwinkle, Darcy has so much good sense the Stanley Cups are just piling up everywhere. I think Ville uses one of them to drink out of while in the press box..(sarcasm again btw)
          Don’t be drinking too much of the cool aid, look at the whole picture. Darcy hasn’t been as bad as the BN says he has, but he also hasn’t been as good as the marks believe he has been either.
          And if you believe the trade with Edmonton makes sense, we know which category you fall into.

    • I think the Leafs are crazy to even be thinking about Bernier , Reimer did a good job last year. What the Leafs need to do is get a stay at home d-man and another power forward.Get someone like Clarkson, Filppua or even Clowe. While Clowe had a rough year last year, he is a leader and willing to go to the dirty places, work the corner and stand in front of the goal – and he’s not afraid to stick up for a team mate. As for D – maybe someone like Ian White, Clitsome or even Sulzer.

      • Ian white? Seriously? No thanks, Clowe is a ghost of his former self, Clarkson if they went that route is UFA and not going to cost pieces and if you bring in a guy like that who plays right wing Fratin becomes expendable as you are not playing Fratin on the fourth line it makes no sense, again if you canupgrade in net and it dosent cost. Uch in the way of roster players or firstround picks you do it even if it was a guy like Emery you need better more consistent goaltending to get to the playoffs let alone to advance in a full season.

        • Ian white is a pretty steady d-man – moves the puck real well and he’s only 28. Because he had a lousy year with Detroit, maybe he can be signed for a reasonable price. Clowe had a crappy year also, but I think it was due to injury and he never was 100% – I look at Clowe more for leadership and his grit. If he can be signed for a reasonable price – why not.

    • Hemsky is one of the fastest wingers in the league with the puck. I think the Oilers would be the losers in that deal. The Hemsky for Neiderriter deal with the Islanders or the swap for Zack Smith out of Ottawa makes more sense for Edmonton. I’d like to see him sign with my Red Wings but probably not gonna happen.

  2. Neal isn’t going anywhere, but Fleury needs to go

  3. Here, here, to Lyle’s comments on Bernier to the Leafs. I agree whole heartedly. If Remi’s fails this year there are plenty of goalies that will be available via trade.

    Nonis needs to confirm what it would take to get Weber. Every player is available for the right price, we all know that… It’s just what is that price? Leaf’s can afford him so why not give it your best shot.

    I hope all the media keeps talking down the price on Horton due to his past injuries. Leaf’s can grab him for cheaper and have another Lupul situation. I don’t think any Leaf fans care that Lup’s was injured half the year because when it counts he is a force.

    • I would say there is almost no chance to land weber. Nashillve paid a heavy price for him and they will not let him go. Leafs imo need to target a few ufa’s scuderi for one would be great for us, clarkson if its under 5 mil, boyd gordon down the middle. Im okay if leafs land bernier but they better not sell the farm for him.

      • Exactly this

        • Probably not but always worth asking

  4. MAF, Chris Kunitz and Letang to Edmonton for their 1st rounder and Taylor Hall .

    Then IF Canucks buy out Roberto sign him, or go after Ryan Miller

    • ahahhaha yea how about horcoff and our first for geno? troll.

    • i’m a pens fan and that’s a horrible deal for Edmonton … Letang & Kunitz can walk after next year and then they will have Fleury for one more … McTavish wants to get bigger and this deal is the opposite of that … will never happen

    • Brutal trade. They would be crazy to move hall. They should move rnh he’s the one that should go. How about if Colorado takes Jones, Edmonton move rnh to Florida (plus) for the chance to get MacKinnon?

      • NO WAY..it would be great for the Pen’s ..dump some salary and get something better in return

    • WHAT?!?!?! Taylor Hall isn’t going anywhere. He’s their best player. Eberle and Edmontons 1st & 2ND rounders for Letang & Kennedy might be more plausible.

  5. One final comment on Bernier. The only way I see this trade benefiting the buds is if they can ink Bernier to a three year deal around $2M/season then they turn around and peddle Reimer for the same as what they paid for Bernier. The ONLY reason I say this is because Reim’s is a RFA next summer and IF he has another banner year he will demand at least $4M+ which will cut into the buds chance of improving under this new cap. GM’s have to look out beyond one season now under this reduced cap. Dion (not that I care), Reim’s, Kessel, Gardiner, Frattin, Kuli, McClement and Scrivens are all RFA’s or UFA’s next summer.

  6. Hall isn’t going anywhere. The Oil are building their team around him.

  7. Think out Loud.
    This week could be a block buster week. As I see it everything will be squeezed down because of the playoffs
    ending last week of June.
    1) The draft is less than a week after the last playoff game. Maybe as few as 4 days.
    2) All 7 rounds on one day, and as I recall draft starts at 2:30 in the afternoon.
    That makes for a long day, does anyone know if the time between picks in the first round will be shorter ?
    3) No overnight chance to regroup for 2-7 rounds and get a deal done if need to.
    4) Only 4 days between the draft and UFA/RFA starts. Meaning if a team didn’t get a replacement for a
    pending UFA at the draft via trade or draft, they have 4 days to get a deal done.
    5) Because this draft may be the deepest in years, if a team wants to trade a vet for picks the time is
    NOW, for them to get the most out of it.
    6) I don’t recall a year when so many teams have goalie questions.
    A) Some have too many Vancouver, maybe Anaheim,
    B) Some are unsure if their current #1 is good enough, Toronto,
    Philly, Washington, Pitts, Edmonton
    C) At least one has really old goalies NJ
    D) Some need to sign their #1 or find a new one, Minnesota, NYI, Columbus
    E) At least one has to figure out if their #1 is coming back Calgary
    F) Some have to figure out what they what to do with their #1,
    Keep or Trade – Buffalo.
    I can really see a game of chicken here, someone will make the first move and open the
    flood gates and my guess is that it will happen on Friday or Saturday and then Sunday morning
    becomes very interesting. Any Thoughts ?

    • None, either than that is an awesome breakdown, al. Nice work!

    • Agreed nice work

    • Nicely done.
      IMHO, I think the Sabres being told, by the two players in question, that they want to wait and see what Darcy is going to be able to do before they recommit to the team. If Darcy is unable to impress them enough that this will be a quick rebuild they will be looking for the door. Which is why both Pegula and Darcy said this week that the situation is up in the air. Darcy said, “they are considering their options.”

  8. Gillis will wait to the last possible second hoping for a trade and then buy out Luongo (which I think can be in sept but I’m not sure). That’s what they did with the head coach position. Waited way to long and go with the worst possible decision because everyone else is gone. Gillis needs to be fired. He seems to think he’s always holding all the cards when really he has none. Can’t see the sedin’s signing an extension (if they do) until next season is done and when Gillis and Torts are fired (hopefully). They need a GM that can make a decision in a timely manner.

    • gillis is a douche. personally i think he’s going to run the team into the ground.

      stafford for hemsky is absurd. one underachieving overpaid player for another doesn’t make sense. drew stafford coupled with miller would fetch a nice ransom.

  9. You wouldn’t get hall alone for Letang and Kunitz, forget about the 7 pick. Wake up

    • Agreed

  10. Interesting take on the goaltenders in the NHL.They have become like NFL quarterbacks,a handful of elite players who will play the majority of their careers with one team.The vast majority bounce around like ping pong balls from one franchise to the next and in some instances from one elite league to another.Even taking your team to the Cup finals is no guarantee you will be wearing the same colors next year.Hired guns.

  11. Maybe there is a third team in play in regards to the Bernier to Toronto rumors? LA doesn’t want to trade him to someone in their division, so maybe the Leafs will flip him to someone in LA’s division.

    • Be nice if he ended up in Calgary. I just don’t see what Calgary has to give up for him

  12. Leafs trade #21and a prospect for Bernier, then flip Scrivens and a Dman (Kostiak) to Edmonton for their 7th. They then trade the 7th along with Berneir and Garbo to Tampa for their 3rd and take Vinny’s contract and keep him for the year and buy him out.


    They then offer up Bernier to Yotes ( if smith tests free agent market) along with a prospect for Yandle or they ship him to St Louis for one of their Dman

    then they get Bobby lou for 2 draft picks

    • I’m not trading our pick for anything. How about phaneuf to Edmonton for mps and the7th frattin and maybe Percy to LA for bernier. Reimer plus to nj for their first rounder.

      Even writing this stuff feels stupid.

    • I am a leafs fan and theres no way edmonton even considers trading there 1st rd pick for scrivens and kostka. If leafs land bernier which i think they will they will not trade him, he wants to be closer to home which i believe is near toronto and compete for a number 1 job.

    • are you mad? i doubt those 1st leafs trades even get accepted on nhl 13. it’ll take a lot more to get the 7th. to get into the top 10 it’ll be fairly difficult. and trading an unproven goalie and a fading player in grabovski for lecalvier and the 3rd overall. Lecalvier does have a huge cap hit but he’s capable of putting up 70+ points a year. No ones getting rid of the third overall just to get rid of salary.

      smoking a lil too much of the good stuff bud

    • Scrivens and Kostiak for the 7th overall? Are you Scrivens mom? A back up goalie and Kostiak for the 7th? Overvalue much?

  13. Bryzgalov wasn’t the problem in Philly.

    Philly fans don’t know whats what. Your defense is what screwed shit up for you guys. If you guys struggle at all its the goalies fault. No matter what. Even if its a offensive or a lack of depth matter you guys always blame the goalie. Just like the Nucks fans.

    If your GM has any hockey sense he’d keep Bryzgalov and get some depth on D. Streit alone isn’t going to do it.

  14. Why are the Flyers going after Ryan when they need d and a good goalie with half a brain. Only way it makes sense is if they are willing to trade Courtier and or Shenn in a seperate deal.

  15. To Toronto: Bernier
    To LA: Frattin + 2nd Rounder
    To Philly: Bernier
    To Toronto: 11th Overall
    To Toronto: Stastny
    To Colorado: 21st Overall + Grabovski
    To Toronto: Halak + Stewart
    To St. Louis: Reimer + 11th Overall

    • the only one close to fair is the 2nd one.

      you leafs fans are all about getting something for nothing hey?

    • Halak and Stewart are 2 players I thought the Leafs would have interest in for years, but not sure how that happens. The Leafs would need to give something more substantial up.

      St Louis is definitely going to look for trade partners with all their RFAs

  16. Colorado needs nothing from Toronto. Nothing, Nada, zipola!

    Colorado is looking for young proven talent.

    A couple “big boy’s with talent that can play up front”,
    “a #1,2, or 3 defenseman/defensemen”
    And the Avs need more size up front.

    (per Adam Foote on the Denver Post’s Avalanche blog)

    Again, no offense to Leafs fans, but the Avs don’t want your hand me downs.
    Why do Leaf fans insist on proposing trading your own players that you, Leafs fans, repeatedly keep throwing under the bus (usually about 1/2 a season after they don a Leafs uniform for the first time)? Why would anyone want what you yourselves admit is garbage?

    • thank you my friend.

      all these leafs fans on here want absolute something for nothing in there bogus trade proposals. frattin the way there offering him up is the next pavel bure or something.

  17. Boy oh boy! This Bernier business is getting tiresome. I don’t recall this much trade speculation and anticipation when Patrick Roy walked out on the Habs and demanded a trade. What baffles me however, is where is the Toronto media while all this talk of significant offers involving the Leafs and Bernier is making the rounds? They’re usually all over even the most far fetched rumour, if it involves the blue-and-white. Yet there’s been barely a mention in any of the major papers. Anyone think there’s a possibility that Nonis could be trying to get into Reimer’s head with the potential arrival of Bernier? I did read somewhere that Nonis and Company were trying to get Reimer locked up for the foreseeable future, with his current deal set to expire at the end of next season. Perhaps talks aren’t going as smoothly as Super Dave had hoped.

  18. Remember Ray Shero is the best GM right now..he could sell a ketchup popsicle top a woman wearing white gloves!!