NHL Rumor Mill – July 11, 2014

Top offseason defense targets, the latest on Ryan O’Reilly, Bruins more likely to trade for a right wing, Blackhawks could move Johnny Oduya, plus updates on the Devils and Wild. 

ESPN.COM: Tim Kavanagh lists Washington’s Mike Green, Toronto’s Dion Phaneuf and Buffalo’s Tyler Myers as this summer’s top offseason trade targets.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Of the three, Green is the most likely to be dealt. The Leafs apparently aren’t getting any calls about Phaneuf nor are they actively shopping him. Sabres GM Tim Murray has said he’ll listen to offers for pretty much everyone on his club, but he’ll set a very high asking price for Myers, which could scare off potential suitors. 

Ryan O'Reilly heading to arbitration with the Avalanche.

Ryan O’Reilly heading to arbitration with the Avalanche.

DENVER POST: Adrian Dater reports it appears Ryan O’Reilly and Colorado Avalanche management appear headed to arbitration on July 23rd as contract talks have stalled. O’Reilly will have his choice of a one- or two-year contract from an arbiter, which can’t be less than 85% of his base salary from last season ($6.5 million), guaranteeing he’ll receive at least $5.525 million per season. The Avalanche took O’Reilly to arbitration as it would’ve cost $6.5 million to qualify his rights for next season. While an arbitration award could be worth less than that, it also runs the risk of driving O’Reilly to arbitration when he becomes eligible in two years, unless he’s traded before then.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: If O’Reilly chooses a one-year award, he’ll be a restricted free agent again next summer. The Avs cannot take him to arbitration again, but he can file if he chooses. If he accepts the two-year deal, he could be as good as gone to unrestricted free agency in 2016.

The previous Avs front-office badly handled this situation from the start by playing hardball with O’Reilly following the last lockout, leading to the Flames offer sheet of two-years, $10 million which forced the Avs to match. They cannot trade him until after his arbitration awarded contract, provided the Avs don’t walk away from the awardI don’t expect they’ll do the latter as that makes O’Reilly an unrestricted free agent, which would certainly provide some spice to what’s now become a dead UFA market this summer.  It remains to be seen if they’ll trade him before the expiration of his contract. 

**UPDATE** As the Avalanche filed for salary arbitration with O’Reilly, they cannot walk away from the arbiter’s decision.

CSNNE.COM: Joe Haggerty reports a Boston Bruins source said the club could stand pat, but would be more likely to add a right wing via trade if they decide to upgrade. The source shot down speculation the Bruins could have interest in UFAs Peter Mueller or Lee Stempniak. The Bruins will have to move salary in order to add an established right wing to play on their top line.

The Bruins have some solid trade chips in Matt Bartkowski, Jordan Caron, Gregory Campbell, Daniel Paille and David Warsofsky if they’re looking for a depth player, but a potential top line player could come with a cost along the lines of Johnny Boychuk, or a Brad Marchand. There have been some twitter murmuring of a Johnny Boychuk-for-Tomas Jurco swap between the Bruins and Red Wings, but there have been no indications that the divisional rivals would be willing to help each other out.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: The Bruins will have nine defensemen under NHL contract and, as Haggerty reported earlier this summer, GM Peter Chiarelli acknowledged he can’t go into next season with that many blueliners. At least one of them could be traded or demoted before the season starts. 

TSN radio host Jason Gregor reports the following via Twitter: “Shannon just said he is hearing Oduya is guy looking to move to get under Cap. One yr on his deal, should be calling.”

NJ.COM: Rich Chere reports Devils GM Lou Lamoriello is still interested in re-signing winger Ryan Carter but nothing has happened thus far. Lamoriello also said he could make a trade this summer.

STARTRIBUNE.COM: Michael Russo reports Minnesota Wild GM Chuck Fletcher hasn’t ruled out making a trade to replace Clayton Stoner, who signed with Anaheim earlier this month.


  1. Anyone else think with ROR’s contract troubles with the Avs basically tells us that this will be the final contract between the two?

    • Too soon to tell, but hopefully not, as they just lost Stastny for nothing (BTW, excellent signing by St L). Not the same management team that had so much trouble last time leading to the offer sheet, which ridiculously increased his salary, so this was somewhat predictable.

      • We should trade him, the relationship with management is broken and all we need is another “hometown discount” deal again.
        The return won’t be what ROR thinks he is worth, he’s a second line player.
        As with Stats his points would be missed but his loss defensively will hurt as well.

    • move him to tampa for drouin. have that duo back together again

      • Drouin’s not going anywhere for a very long time. My bet is he wins the Calder by a landslide this upcoming season.

      • Tampa doesn’t need another center. Aside from not needing a center they are already 200k over the cap……How would Drouins 900k make room for ROR’s 6-7 million?

  2. Ryan Carter would be a good additional to the Rangers. Tanner Glass signing still beyond me

    • Agree, Carter is an excellent 4th line forward. Would be a good fit with a lot of teams.

    • Vigneault has had Tanner Glass with him before in Vcr so the know what they’re getting, smart, disciplined and tough

  3. Matt Bartkowski is the most likely Broon to be traded. He was dreadful against Montreal in the playoffs. He has excellent skills, but no hockey sense; his positioning is horrible, resulting in numerous holding penalties. Caron is next most likely to be traded. And yes, the guy who drafted Hamill, Colborne, and Caron in the first round is no longer with Boston, replaced by Keith Gretzky. And his first rounder this year, Pastrnak, looks like a real find at development camp.

    Devils need to trade a forward, as they’ve signed two new ones (Cammy and Havlat) and none of their extant forwards have left. BTW, is Havlat on the LTIR yet? Give him some time. They should only trade 1 forward. They’ve lost 3 dmen and will have to actually play Larsson next year.

    No one wants Phaneuf’s contract. He’s paid like a #1 dman, but he isn’t one. Good #3, but that’s it.

    • Nice slam on phaneuf, you’re sadly mistaken. FYI the Broons never really draft well … ever and when they do they trade the good ones away. It’s a Burin thing.

      • The Bruins never draft well? Krejci, Lucic, Bergeron, you’re right. they’re awful! They should just trade all 3 to the leafs for Phaneuf cuz he is so awesome.

        In two lines you were able to conclusively prove how clueless you are. The Bruins draft very well. and Phaneuf is best suited for a #3 role on a team. He certainly isnt a #1 or #2. Sorry Ron, go back to homeroom.

        • Boston got great value out of the draft in 2006 – Kessel, Lucic, Marcahnd, and from 03-05 they got guys like Versteeg, Sobotoka, Hunwick, Krejci, Bergeron, Stuart, and Brown; all successful picks to varying degrees. Not much success from 2007 on so far. Seguin was 2nd overall, which doesn’t take great scouting, and Hamilton was also a top 10 pick who was a gift that fell to them. Great value in that pick, as I think he will be better than your average #9 pick, but again, doesn’t take as much work to find value in that spot, and they haven’t been as successful finding value in later spots which hurts when you are so good and picking late.

          That being said they have a good young core, and some guys still poised to take a step forward which gives them time.

          I disagree about Phaneuf being a #3. That underrates him quite a bit. Personally I think he’s a weak #1, or strong #2. He is definitely capable of being a top pairing defensemen on a good team. Ideally he would be your 2nd best, with a #1 who is better offensively and a #3 who is better defensively, so he would be #2 in every situation which would provide his best overall value. Something along the lines of a D-Core with say a guy like Yandle and Staal providing insulation. Not saying he is worth the money he is currently being paid, or that he is a bonafide star, but there aren’t many teams where he would be a #3. (Chicago, St.Louis, Nashville)

          • I’m on the fence about Phanuef. I think he is somewhere between a 2 or a 3-4 guy.Really depending on what team we are talking about. But you can add NY, LA, Minnesota, to the list of him falling into a 3-4 d-man without question.

          • 5 or 6 teams is along way off 30…again statistically speaking his numbers are pretty simmilar to more teams top pairing than not. Past few years top 20 in points despite playing with players considerably weaker partners than a 1 or 2 on most teams (Gunnarsson and Kostika and Franson are not top pairing types) primarily starting in his own zone, top 10 in hits, top 20 in block shots, top 5 guys in the league in mins….still havent heard a reasonable stat that says otherwise, just a whole lot of just because.

          • Minnesota? He is a 3? My favorite comparison! Suter

            Ryan Suter 672 gp 50 goals 263 assists 313 points 8 gwg +60
            Phaneuf 680 gp 114 goals 257 assists 371 points 25 gwg +3

            Not saying Phaneuf or Suter is better but they play simmilar minutes, Phaneuf has more hits about equal in block shots. +/- in this situation throw it out the window Suter played with Weber in Nashville which really helps the old plus minus.

        • Sobotka Hunwick Kessel Seguin Versteeg Colborne some examples of those picks Ron mentined getting dealt pretty early….whole lot of other first rounders that went no where Andrew Alberts Matt Lashoff Zach Hamil….even a blind Squirrel finds a nut once in a while but seems to me Boston trades good picks and makes bad picks more often than they keep good picks, the picks they keep are very good but go back over the past 5 years or 10 years the record speaks for itself even a blind Squirrel finds a nut every once in a while.

          • Ya, and the Leafs drafts lately have been really good. The Bruins have sucked picking in the 1st round, but have found steals later on in the draft. And if i remember right, didn’t Toronto deal some guy named Tuukka Rask? Talking about dealing one of the best goalies in the league right now

          • See the thing is noone is arguing thst the Leafs have drafted well.

        • Notice, what you get if you reverse his first and names?

          • Gee thats clever lol who could have possibly noticed that?

      • Your sadly mistaken Ron if you think Phaneuf is any better then a marginal number 2. And name one team that’d want Phaneuf’s contract? He’ll the Leafs don’t even want it.

        • I’m curious to see how M. Subban pans out. Thinking that was a wise drafting choice. Not a poor one.

        • Pick 1 d man let alone 3 off each of the 30 teams thats better…and have some kind of stats to back it up monkies…have fun with Edmonton Calgary Islanders Avs…on and on.
          Jes I wont even bother with today.

      • Phaneuf is terrible

    • Im gonna come in to say Bartowski did have some nig mistakes in playoffs but,brfore this season he had only ever played 32 games in the nhl over 4 years.In 64 games this year he had 18 assists was a plus 22 and had 155 hits.He was played over veteran Meszaros in playoffs.He may never be a top 4 d man but he can hit and play solid defence could add good value in a trade.

      • oopps meant big mistakes not nig lol

  4. In a weird kinda way Feasters offer sheet kinda worked. The Avs matched and should have enough space to sign Barrie and OReilly, but its really kinda thrown a wrench in to how it all has to be handled and quite possibly could lead to players moving on from the Avs a little sooner than they would have otherwise.

    • Was just thinking the same thing, which is pretty rare for the two of us.

      Funny how the second year of the contract was the higher of the two and how that 85% rule works.

      • Feaster got to screw them on two consecutive deals to a degree.

    • Incorrect, the only thing messing up this process is the Duchene contracts. PS was offered $5.9M per (Duchene = $6M). ROR was offered $3.5M per last time (Duchene = $3.5M) and many Avs fans thought he was easily worth north of $4M. Roy and Sakic have both spoken about The Structure (blessings and peace be upon it) openly; nobody should make more than the team’s best player. Duchene signed discount deals the last two times because he loves playing for COL; he’s easily worth $7M today. When you look at deals signed by Dubinsky, Callahan, Bolland, Clarkson, it’s easy to value ROR over $6M.

      • The PS $5.9M offer was disclosed in one of Adrian Dater’s latest podcasts. I believe Dater also confirmed the previous ROR $3.5M offer.

  5. After the arbitration is set and ROR has his salary. The Avs will take trade offers on him.. IF he really wanted to be in Colorado long term he would have signed a deal already. But he thinks he is the TOP DOG on the team. HE wants to be paid that part. Dutchy is what made that top line go.

    Yes ROR is a good 2 way center but he is crazy if he thinks he should be getting 6.5 million a year.

    I personally would love to see us trade him sooner rather than later as another team would give up more NOW since they would control him for 2 more years at the very least.

    COLORADO : Ryan O’Reilly (C/W), Ryan Wilson (D)

    WINNIPEG: Evander Kane (W), Prospect, pick

    Colorado gets a younger winger who is locked up for 4 years at 5.25 million / season which fits
    what we are trying to build here. A prospect and a pick.

    Winnipeg gets a top center that they have been looking for even though ROR is turning into a drama queen he will get his spotlight and be the man in Winnipeg.

    WIN WIN for both sides. Plus it will add intensity when we play Winnipeg as they are a division rival.

    • That’ll be interesting to see being that a team can’t trade a player away they took to arbitration until the end of their contract…

  6. There are rumors abound (remind you they are rumours) that Ottawa is looking to make a splash in the trade market. These rumours revolve around Sharp (who has a no trade clause so I think we can forget that), Thornton (Yep, another player we can forget having a no trade clause) and now O’Reilly in Colorado. It appears Jason Spezza’s media scrum down in Dallas where he stated that the chance to win is all a player can ask for really hurt Sen Management’s egos. They appear to be kicking tires around some big trades. Should be interesting to watch. Hopefully they don’t do something stupid to try and save face in front of their fans with some band aide solution. Hopefully as a fan I can see them put in place some coherent plan. What is the plan anyways?

    • Ehh Ithink they should just stick to what they have mayne try to add some experinced depth…aside from ROR who is a good player but could cost them in the long run (have to figure a first round pick along with other pieces that might not be the best idea for the Sens to be giving up this year) Everyone else mentioned seems like older baind aid type players, or guys that might be a nice pice on a contender but not guys who are going to carry a team very far.

    • Good question, seems like the plan is the classic ‘Make a trade and hope that it gets us to the playoffs but lose in the first 2 rounds because were competing against teams spending at least 10 million more than our own’ scheme. It’s a technical term
      Yeah Spezza’s comments might hurt but I think it was code for the owner will only spend 14 million under the cap and the team won’t go anywhere with that. Everyone knows the Sens are a budget team anyway. I hope they can make something big happen via trade. I think it could be one of those off the radar moves like when Phili moved Carter and Richards. No one really saw those coming. An Evander Kane deal could be interesting (not off the radar). But I don’t see a great need for forwards with all the young talent and current players so I’m thinking maybe a top defenseman could be the target?

  7. Arbitration is not good for long term relationships, one side tells the other that they are not as good as they think they are while the other side typically inflates their value. I agree that after the dust has settled in Colorado that OReilly won’t be around for long. Duchesne is number one and it won’t be long before MacKinnon is knocking at that door. If the Avs could flip ROR for a top pair dman they should consider it IMO.

  8. Leafs’ problems go past Dion – the rest of their defense is very average. Toronto cannot trade Dion until they can find another defenseman to play his minutes. Phaneuf is not a number 1, but he plays alotta minutes and the Leafs need to fill the void before they consider trading him. I like Rielly a lot, Gardiner is a terrible defenseman he needs to be playing out west.

  9. If traded, ROR will not resign in Winnipeg – so a deal with the Jets will not work. Good premise, but he won’t stay there in two years when he has a choice and the rest of the league will be calling. There’s alotta money out there, ROR will look for his best deal and his best situation. He has a Lady Byng on his fireplace now, probably thinks he can get more.