The latest on Mike Smith, Simon Gagne and Jose Theodore, plus updates on the Bruins and Flyers.
ESPN BOSTON: James Murphy listed Calgary’s Jarome Iginla, Dallas’ Michael Ryder, Florida’s Stephen Weiss, San Jose’s Ryane Clowe and Philadelphia’s Ruslan Fedotenko as five forwards the Bruins should target leading up to the NHL trade deadline. All five are slated for unrestricted free agency this summer.
SPECTOR’S NOTE: Where their respective teams are in the standings will determine their availability, plus those with movement clauses (Iginla, Weiss) must be willing to waive them.
Of this group, I’d say Ryder and Fedotenko would be the easiest to acquire. Ryder’s a former Bruin (he was part of the 2011 Cup championship) so he’d fit it easily, and Fedotenko (who has a modified NTC) would address their need for grit on left wing. Iginla and Weiss would cost too much, and I doubt the Sharks will part with Clowe.
FOXSPORTS ARIZONA: Craig Morgan reports Phoenix Coyotes GM Don Maloney said contract talks with goaltender Mike Smith are on hold this season due to the club’s uncertain ownership situation. Maloney also won’t be sending Colorado Avalanche holdout center Ryan O’Reilly an offer sheet.
SPECTOR’S NOTE: It would be a shame if the Coyotes lost another starting goalie because of their never-ending ownership woes. We’ll have to wait until the off-season to see how this plays out. Don’t expect Smith to be shopped. Maloney hopes to re-sign him.
RDS.CA: Renaud Lavoie reported a GM told him there is “no doubt” LA Kings winger Simon Gagne could be dealt to a club seeking depth at forward. Gagne is healthy this season and has five points in 11 games this season. He’s due to become a UFA this summer.
SPECTOR’S NOTE: Gagne’s cap hit is $3.5 million. At this point in his career, I believe clubs could have more concerns over his concussion history than his salary.
SUNSENTINEL.COM: Harvey Fialkov reports the poor performance this season of Panthers center Stephen Weiss is hurting his trade value. GM Dale Tallon insists he wants to re-sign Weiss, while a source told Fialkov neither Weiss or goaltender Jose Theodore were being shopped…yet.
SPECTOR’S NOTE: If the Panthers don’t turn things around soon, I expect the fire sale to begin around mid-March.
PHILLY.COM: More than 21 scouts and front office types from around the league took in last night’s Maple Leafs-Flyers game, including the GMs of the Winnipeg Jets and St. Louis Blues.
SPECTOR’S NOTE: Let your imaginations soar!