NHL Morning Rumor Mill – May 7, 2014.

The latest on the Sharks, Shea Weber, Vincent Lecavalier, Shawn Thornton and the Panthers , plus a look at this summer’s goalie market and more. 

Could the Flyers try to trade Vincent Lecavalier this summer?

Could the Flyers try to trade Vincent Lecavalier this summer?

CBC.CA: Elliotte Friedman believes the Sharks would find it difficult to get back equal value if they shopped a cornerstone player like Joe Thornton, Patrick Marleau, Logan Couture, Joe Pavelski or Marc-Edouard Vlasic). He also claims GM Doug Wilson has no inclination to deal any of his promising young players. Friedman also wondered about the state of their goaltending…Noting Canucks president Trevor Linden citing Boston’s four-line approach as something he wants to emulate, Friedman wonders if Linden might pursue Bruins pending UFA Shawn Thornton…Predators GM David Poile once again says he’s not trading Shea Weber. Friedman thinks Poile believes the Predators stand a better chance of finding the scoring forward they crave with Weber in the lineup…With Peter Laviolette now in Nashville, Friedman wonders if there’s a trade fit there for the Flyers involving Vincent Lecavalier. Laviolette apparently had a hand in bringing Lecavalier to Philadelphia. The Flyers would have to pick up part of Lecavalier’s salary…Panthers GM Dale Tallon said it would take a lot to convince him to part with one of his young core players…Dallas Stars GM Jim Nill said defensemen Alex Goligoski and Trevor Daley will return with the Stars next season. The pair were subject of trade rumors earlier in the season but have since improved their play.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: If the Sharks do move a core player it could be Pavelski, whose 41-goal season puts his stock at an all-time high…If the Bruins don’t re-sign Thornton he will get considerable interest even though he falls into the 35-and-above category…I believe Poile when he says he’s not trading Weber. If he ever changes his mind, it’ll be down the road, and depending upon the development of promising Seth Jones.  Won’t happen this summer…Friedman was only speculating about a Lecavalier-to-Nashville deal. I think Poile’s smarter than that, even if the Flyers picked up part of his salary. The Preds GM will want something else in return even to consider it…The only young Panthers player I see as a trade candidate is Dmitry Kulikov, and that depends upon the RFA’s contact talks this summer.

STLTODAY.COM: Jeff Gordon recently examined this summer’s NHL goaltender market. Gordon considers the Islanders acquisition of Jaroslav Halak a good move…The Blues will promote Jake Allen into their lineup next season. Remains to be seen if Ryan Miller, Brian Elliott or someone else is his goalie partner…The Maple Leafs must decide if they’ll tender a qualifying offer to James Reimer, as they risk being stuck with an unhappy goalie if they fail to move him via trade…The Ducks could let Jonas Hiller depart via free agency this summer…The Hurricanes could shop Cam Ward but his contract makes him tough to move…If Marc-Andre Fleury can put his previous playoff disappointments behind him he could translate it into a contract extension with the Penguins…Will the Sharks stick with Antti Niemi or pursue another starter like Ryan Miller?…Flames GM Brad Treliving said he’s not in the market for a goalie, preferring to stick with Karri Ramo as their starter…The Canucks might take a look at their goaltending at some point this summer as Eddie Lack has yet to prove himself as a starter…It’ll be interesting to see what the Wild do with their goaltending this summer. Niklas Backstrom is coming off injury, Josh Harding is battling career-threatening multiple sclerosis, Darcy Kuemper remains untested and Ilya Bryzgalov is merely a fill-in…Perhaps Tim Thomas could be an insurance backup for a contender.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: I expect the Isles to re-sign Halak to a multi-year deal around $5 million per season…I doubt the Blues re-sign Miller, who could be pursued by the Sharks or Ducks, though in my opinion he’s scarcely an improvement over Niemi or Hiller. The Ducks could stick with young goalies Frederik Andersen and John Gibson…I still expect the Leafs to qualify Reimer’s right and trade him this summer…Hiller’s a goner via free agency…The Hurricanes must pick up part of Ward’s salary to move him, provided he’s willing to waive his no-trade clause…The Canucks will probably stick with Lack and Jacob Markstrom to start next season…The Wild’s goaltending will depend upon Harding’s battle with MS. 


  1. Lyle, your right Hiller is a goner unless by over whelming odds he suddenly gets HOT but I think the Ducks will go with Andersen / Gibson next year and try and pick up a vet like Thomas or Giguere or ? to provide stability and backup if needed. I can see Hiller’s rights traded in June for a low round draft pick if some one wants to get a leg up on finding a goalie before July 1 kicks in,

    • I think the play in this series with the Kings will determine if they are content with Andersen full time or not.

      Gibson and Andersen would just be a 1a 1b situation IMO. Gibson IMO will win it overall. I think it’s time to bring Gibson up full time. If Andersen runs away with the starting role then maybe go out and get a veteran to backup Andersen while Gibson gets a little seasoning in the AHL.

      Who do you think will have the starting job by next April?

      • Gibson BUT I see next year as maybe 40 games with Andersen and 30 games with Gibson winning out, 10-12 games with a Old Vet who can help out as a teacher. Perhaps next summer a decision will be made to trade one of them but since they are both on the cheapie contracts, no rush. What Ducks now need to do is draft a goalie for 3-4 years out, someone who will be back in Juniors for next year or two and then AHL for a couple of years. At start of season they had 4 Hiller, Fasth, Andersen and Gibson – soon they will be down to TWO.

    • I have been saying all year long that if Hiller doesnt win us a Cup this year, he is a goner. I honestly think Gibson should be up here. But if Miller is willing to take a 2-3 year deal at $3.5-$4.5 mil per to be in Anaheim, I would do that and keep Gibson down in Norfolk for 1 more year. Let Andersen and Miller battle it out. If all works well, you can trade Andersen for something nice and have Gibson up here the following year with Miller as his mentor. Just a thought.

      • That is a great thought, but I really don’t believe that Miller sees himself in the mentor role for the “next big thing.” It would appear that he is happy being away from Buffalo and having contenders want him.
        I would think Miller scoffs at the value of the deal as well as the term. But I could be wrong…

        • He may scoff at the deal but that’s all he’s worth. His starting days are almost over.

  2. I don’t know why Friedman think both Marleau and Thornton are cornerstones?

    • Jes, both Marleau and Thornton are locked into their contracts with NMC for the next 3 years. At one point I thought the Sharks would move Marleau after they were eliminated a couple of years ago, but they stuck with him. Both players are Top 6 – durable, talented and will get you 70 points – Thornton by setting up his wings and Marleau with his speed and goal scoring ability – Thing is…..there is something lacking there – leadership….just something – where someone from the Sharks steps up and rises to the occassion. Because the Sharks are locked in with Marleau and Thornton – their two key players that would give them the most return would be Pavelski or Couture. Sharks have made it very clear that Couture is their future – so that leaves Pavs and I think he is a worthy pickup. Is he worth #2 from the Sabres, I wouldn’t go that far, but I would give up Meyers and #39 for him. Bflo would get Pavs for the next 6 years and I think he could be a strong leader to mentor our youngsters.

      • Myers and #39 won’t land you Pavelski! Keep dreaming!
        Myers is an overpaid d-man and as mentioned above, the trade value of Pavelski has never been higher than now. A point per game player last season and 41 goals scored!

  3. Miller will land in San Jose IMO. Looks like they are ready for a change in that department. Funny haven’t they had like 2-3 different starting goalies but have the exact same core? There was Nabokov, Niemi and Toskala (Unless he was the one traded to TO?)

    • Jes, I know San Jose is always looking for the next Lunquist and Rask, but Niemi is a very solid goalie. Might not be flashy, but he is pretty consistent and has a SC ring. San Jose would be foolish to swap Niemi out for Miller – they should stand pat with their goalie tandem and if anything give Stalock more playing time.

      Miller’s performance during Round one has affected his value and I could see him ending up in Anaheim mentoring Anderson and Gibson (giving Anaheim a real home town discount). At one time I would have said he resigns with St. Louis, but I think the softies just killed him there.

    • Besides that Toskala never was the starting goalie in San Jose (hope I’m not wrong :-) ) all you’ve said is correct imo. I too think it’s not a goalie problem, but I also think the solution is not trading Pavelski and / or Couture. Replace Boyle with two solid d-men via trade (Thornton or Marleau?) and free agency. Sign a veteran back-up to play 30 games (don’t know much about Stalock) and be sure you don’t overplay Niemi.

  4. Looks like Hextall is new GM of Flyers. No idea if Homer is stepping down or getting a different position.

    • Homer is President I think.

      • This could create Garth Snow part 2.

  5. I agree with Steve about Niemi and Miller. There’s no way, especially after his poor playoff, that the Sharks go for Miller. Stalock looks like the future with his strong play, and I see Niemi being his tutor for the next year or two. They’re a good pair and get along very very well.

    As far as trading Pavs….yes, this team definitely needs more grit up front, but I think Pavs has more upside than Couture…defensively, face-offs, scoring all part of Pavs game. Trade Couture for some leadership. I think Boyle is a goner unless he’ll take just one year. 3rd and 4th lines look solid for a change, and Havlat will be bought out, and wouldn’t be surprised if Burris gets bought out as well to bring in someone with great leadership qualities who is also physical and a decent scorer with speed to play the Shark’s north-south style. They are not that far away. Perhaps Stuart or Hannan moving on/retiring as well.

    • Agree on many points. San Jose`s defense probably need a overhaul. Boyle gone and possibility of Stuart and Hannan leaving no better time then now to overhaul that defense. Sign Orpik and Niskanen in the offseason

    • If its Pavs to go, could something like a Phaneuf and either Kadri or Bozak, land Pavs and some pocket change? Fills a need for both teams…