NHL Morning Rumor Mill – Tuesday, February 12, 2013.

The latest on the Canucks, Flyers, Oilers, Penguins, Blues, Flames, Jets, and more.

VANCOUVER PROVINCE: Ed Willes believes the best option for the Canucks this season is to retain Roberto Luongo, pointing out goaltending has been the club’s strength this season.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Willes acknowledged circumstances could change forcing the Canucks to shop Luongo this season, but feels for the short-term it’s best to keep him. I agree. Best to retain him for this season, then shop him in the off-season when there’s a better chance of landing the type of return they want.

Could the Oilers shop Ryan Whitney?

Could the Oilers shop Ryan Whitney?

EDMONTON JOURNAL: Jim Matheson noted Ryan Whitney’s recent poor play made him a healthy scratch twice already, and wondered what the Oilers plans are for the struggling blueliner. He believes the Oilers will trade Whitney, given his UFA status this summer.

Matheson also listed Whitney among several players likely to be shopped this season. They include Mark Streit of the NY Islanders, Robyn Regehr of the Buffalo Sabres, Tim Connolly of the Toronto Maple Leafs, Nik Antropov of the Winnipeg Jets, and Dustin Penner of the LA Kings.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: There probably is a market for Whitney, but given the decline of his mobility, it could be a limited one, and it could take time to generate interest. Streit could be moved, but never underestimate the Isles ability to re-sign key players. Regehr would likely accept a move to a playoff contender. Connolly is currently in the minors and could be had cheap near the deadline. The Jets won’t move Antropov if they’re in playoff contention by the deadline. As for Penner, his inconsistency makes him a tough sell.

ESPN.COM: Pierre LeBrun speculates if the Philadelphia Flyers make a trade between now and the April 3rd trade deadline, it’ll be for either a forward or an offensive defenseman. They won’t shop for a goaltender, as Ilya Bryzgalov has played well this season, earning the praise of GM Paul Holmgren.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Forget about those “Luongo to Philadelphia” rumors from a month ago. Bryzgalov’s play has silenced that speculation.

STLTODAY.COM: Jeff Gordon wonders if the Blues recent slump could propel GM Doug Armstrong, who has plenty of cap space, into the trade market for help. Gordon was  in Toronto taking in the Flyers-Maple Leafs game last night. Gordon noted Jaroslav Halak’s nagging groin injury and Brian Elliott’s recent struggles, wondering if Armstrong would shop for another veteran goaltender.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: The Blues certainly seem to need a jolt, but if Armstrong’s looking around for a goalie, he won’t be contacting the Leafs and Flyers, who don’t have any veteran netminders they could spare.

CALGARY SUN: Eric Francis noted the Flames plucking goaltender Joey MacDonald off waivers from the Red Wings yesterday, wondering if GM Jay Feaster was merely adding more depth at that position, or perhaps the MacDonald acquisition was a sign of a bigger move to come.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Miikka Kiprusoff is reportedly due back off IR soon, Leland Irving played well in his absence, and Danny Taylor was signed to an NHL contract last week after Kiprusoff got hurt. It’ll be interesting to see what Feaster has up his sleeve.

WINNIPEG FREE PRESS: Gary Lawless believes defenseman Paul Postma is the Jets’ most likely candidate to be trade bait if management decides to shop for a forward with size and skill.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Postma is a young, affordable asset who could generate interest around the league, though they might have to wait until later in the season for his trade value to increase.

BOSTON GLOBE: Fluto Shinzawa reports Bruins pending UFA defenseman Andrew Ference wants to stay in Boston, but he might have to accept a pay cut on a lesser deal to do so. Negotiations have yet to begin between he and Bruins management.

 PITTSBURGH POST-GAZETTE: Dave Molinari suggests if Penguins management doesn’t believe prospect winger Beau Bennett is ready to contribute now, they should shop some of their assets (like their promising young defensemen) for a scoring winger.

CBC.CA: Elliotte Friedman reports a few teams have interest in Colorado Avalanche center Ryan O’Reilly, but it’s uncertain how his contract standoff with the Avs will end. Derick Brassard of the Columbus Blue Jackets has also been mentioned. The Jackets also have three first round picks this year (theirs, plus the Kings and Rangers) but they probably won’t move their own unless it’s for a “superstud”. Dustin Penner of the LA Kings could also be a player of interest.


  1. Kipper seems like a good obvious choice to move for a semi rebuild in Calgary.

    The St. Louis Blues could be a darkhorse team to acquire Luongo this offseason.

    • If calgary doesn’t make some moves toward a rebuild or at least some younger skilled players they need to fire feaster, or ownership is responsible either way this has gone on to long.
      St louis could be an interesting trade partner for a lot of teams. They have a lot of young skilled players including some big centers.
      Its pretty obvious philly misses pronger and I don’t think losing carle helps that. Not sure of any d men that could help them right now other then boumeester. But not sure if they would take that salary on now.

    • I first thought of that to, but then they still have Halak. So I am thinking more in the line of Bishop from Ottawa.

      • Didn’t Ottawa get bishop from St. Louis last year?

        • Ahhh, you may be right, my bad.

          • As I recall, the Blues hand was forced by the fact that a quirk in Bishop’s contract made him a pending UFA. With Elliott having an all-star year and Halak healthy, they had no interest in signing him to a one way deal, so he was traded to the Senators – who were prepared to do that. The deal he signed with the Senators will make him an RFA at the end fo the season.

            That said, I don’t think the Blues are desperate enough for help in Goal that they’d be prepared to offer enough for the Sens to trade away their goaltending depth at this time.

    • Why would the Blues want Luongo? They already have Halek, and Elliot

  2. If Columbus is smart, they’ll hold on to all three first rounders they have this year. Both the Kings and Rangers are poised to miss the playoffs.

    • No offense man, but if you seriously think the Rangers and Kings are going to miss the playoffs you are going to be sadly mistaken. Both clubs have been playing well the last few games and look to be turning things around into the teams they were thought to be. Not only will both make the playoffs they will be forces come playoff time.

      I do agree however that the BJ’s should hold on to all three picks though as this is suppose to be a deep draft year.

      • I don’t necessarily think that either or both of the Kings and Rangers will miss the playoffs, but I suspect that they’ll hover around the middle of the pack.

        But yes, you’re right. I was suggesting that they should keep the picks regardless, but the fact that both the Rangers and Kings are hovering towards the bottom of the standings is a bonus.

      • Kings might… their playoff hopes and dreams (just like last year) lives and dies by Jonathan Quick.

        Rangers won’t miss the playoffs. They’re just dealing with adjustments. Give them 20 games and they’re going to be comfortable, supposing that Pittsburgh and NJ aren’t wiping the floor with them.

        • i’d disagree with you statement about the kings and quick. he is a core part of that team like any goaltender but it’s the kings defensive system that will determine if they will make the playoffs. the last few years they’ve been tremendous defensively -consistently being one of the best at goals against, shots against, and blocks. this year they are struggling defensively, and quick’s numbers are showing it although his play has been less than stellar.

          additionally, i think bernier will start picking up more starts and if given the chance could live up to all that potential people see but question if he’ll ever live up to.

  3. Would be nice if Dustin Penner returns as a Duck…

  4. I would love to steal Jack Johnson from Columbus. Flyers need puck moving d-men but it will cost us.

  5. I have O’Reilly as a 74 rating at the age of 21.

    I have Brassard as a 67 rating and he’s older. Absolute rip-off. A first rounder would also have to be going the other way.

  6. Following the articles above:
    The Flyers need to do something
    Trade availability could allow the Flyers to get Mark Streit and Nik Antropov, they would be a much improved team.
    (Providing the Flyers could not pry Yandle and Doan away from Phoenix.)

    • Its all fine and dandy to propose who the flyers might want to acquire, but the big issue is who are they going to give up to do so. And they will have to as they are right tight against the cap.

      • The Flyers have almost $8mil in cap space to use because they haven’t used Pronger or Walker’s LTIR allowances yet.

  7. pitt needs a scoring winger, really only to make them stanley cup favorites. anyone else think their d prospects and maybe a first for iggy and change? boy oh boy iggy would look great on crosby’s wing. this trade almost makes too much sense. calgary needs prospects/picks, pitt needs a scoring winger. how about iggy and stepniack (sp?) for matta and a first or pouliot and a second? anyone??

    as for kipper, a dark horse could be st louis. i know they are a western conference team but they have the prospects to make a trade. how about jaskin and a first for kipper. or binnington jaskin and a first for kipper and a Dman. calgary is awful this year, they have to rebuild, if they dont, their owners should be fired along with their management

  8. @ nitroglycerin101

    Jack Johnson has to be considered untouchable for Colombus. He played 36:00 minutes against Detroit and 34:00 against Los Angeles last week. The guys a stud.

  9. when calgary finally starts to off their older star players Giordano could be moved for a nice return of younger players. he is cap friendly as well for 3 more years. detroit washington or the flyers are in need of a guy like this .say detroit offered brendan smith and one of their good prospects and a draft pick .
    the flames really need to be drafting in the top two this year

    • Gunnin for McKinnon

  10. Dont think the Canucks get a better deal in the offseason for Luongo but I doubt they get anything in trade that helps them now. With teams facing the big cut in the cap next season it’s going to be really hard to find a trading partner. They could end up waiving him.