Could Nazem Kadri receive an offer sheet? Has Miikka Kiprusoff retired? Are the Hurricanes still interested in Brenden Morrow?
KUKLA’S KORNER: has a collection of tweets from TSN’s Bob McKenzie regarding the latest talk on the notable remaining restricted free agents. McKenzie claimed Nazem Kadri seeks a six-year deal around $5.5 million per season. That drew a rebuke from Kadri (“false bobo”), prompting McKenzie to tell Kadri to “feel free” to provide any details whilst expressing confidence in the info he had tweeted.
McKenzie also claimed NY Rangers center Derek Stepan was seeking a deal similar to teammate Ryan McDonagh (6 years, $4.7 million per season). He reported St. Louis Blues defenseman Alex Pietrangelo sought an eight-year deal but the question was where it would settle dollar-wise (between $6-$7 million per season). As for Ottawa Senators defenseman Jared Cowen, the two sides were discussing long and short term deals but nothing was imminent.
SPECTOR’S NOTE: No reaction from Stepan, Pietrangelo and Cowen on McKenzie’s recent Twitter reports. Of the four, Pietrangelo and Cowen seem closer to getting deals done, as they seem to be discussing various options with their respective clubs. Kadri and Stepan, however, appear stuck with the “take-it-or-leave-it” bridge contract offers from their teams.
THE SPORTING NEWS: Sean Gentille wondered if a Nazem Kadri offer sheet was possible. He noted several teams (Phoenix Coyotes, St. Louis Blues, Calgary Flames, Colorado Avalanche, Buffalo Sabres, Ottawa Senators, Florida Panthers and NY Islanders) had the cap space to pitch an offer sheet to Kadri, but noted various reasons (RFAs of their own to re-sign, self-imposed cap ceilings) hamper such a move.
SPECTOR’S NOTE: As Gentille noted, if any team on that list could make a pitch, it could be the Calgary Flames, who unsuccessfully tried to sign away Ryan O’Reilly from the Avalanche last season. However, that was under different circumstances, as the Flames were harboring playoff aspirations and seeking a center for the now-departed Jarome Iginla. The Flames appear committed to rebuilding from within this season. Factor in the reduced salary cap for this season, and I doubt Kadri gets an offer sheet.
CALGARY HERALD: Flames GM Jay Feaster said he’s had conversations with Miikka Kiprusoff about the goalie’s plans. While unwilling to discuss them now, Feaster claims they’ll “have a resolution” before the start of training camp.
SPECTOR’S NOTE: At this point I’ll be very surprised if Kiprusoff decides to return for one more season.
RALEIGH NEWS & OBSERVER: Chip Alexander reports the Carolina Hurricanes recent training camp invitation to Radek Dvorak hasn’t dampened their interest in signing UFA winger Brenden Morrow. GM Jim Rutherford said Morrow had spoken with the Hurricanes and other clubs and has narrowed down his choices. Hurricanes coach Kirk Muller believes Morrow is “hanging tight” right now to see what happens.
SPECTOR’S NOTE: In other words, Morrow could be weighing the offers and opportunities before making his final choice, which hopefully will come before training camps open next Wednesday.