NHL Rumors – December 5, 2011.

The latest from the Edmonton Journal, plus the Bruins are well-positioned to make a move, if needed, later this season.


Could the Blackhawks target Sam Gagner?

EDMONTON JOURNAL: Jim Matheson yesterday suggested the Chicago Blackhawks decision to move Patrick Kane from center back to right wing could mean they’re in the market for a second line center, as Dave Bolland is a perfect third line center, while Patrick Sharp is a winger, not a center. Matheson believes one couldn’t blame the Blackhawks if they were looking at Edmonton’s Sam Gagner, who played with Kane in junior hockey.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: It’s not the first time this season Gagner’s been linked to the Blackhawks, but there’s no guarantee the Oilers would part with him, and if so, if they would send him to Chicago. One shouldn’t fully rule out the possibility, but it’ll depend on where both teams are in the standings by the trade deadline. If the Oilers are still in the hunt, they might be buyers, not sellers.

BOSTON HERALD: Stephen Harris yesterday reported the Bruins still have considerable cap space (currently $3.1 million, not counting the LTIR relief from Marc Savard being out for the season) to bolster their lineup, but GM Peter Chiarelli currently sees little reason to make a move at this time. Harris also suggests Chiarelli must ensure he leaves himself enough space beyond this season to re-sign key players. “Chris Kelly Gregory Campbell,Daniel Paille, Shawn Thornton, Johnny Boychuk and Joe Corvo are all due for unrestricted free agent status, and Tuukka Rask and Benoit Pouliot are restricted free agents.”

SPECTOR’S NOTE: If the Bruins are playing as well by the trade deadline as they currently are, Chiarelli would probably stand pat. As for next summer’s free agents, I see them re-upping Kelly, Thornton, Rask and perhaps Boychuk. Feel free to weigh in, Bruins fans, which of those free agents do you think the Bruins should re-sign?


  1. Well as a bruins fan i would let Joe Corvo go. Steven Kampfer is waiting in the wings and can do what Corvo does for a fraction of the cost. Benoit Pouliot is making 1.1 million and they will have to qualify him at that price to keep him, I say let him go as well he hasn’t shown me enough to say yes this guy is worth what he is getting, especially when Jordan Caron is waiting to get his shot and i feel is a better option then Pouliot.
    As far as trades go i would’nt make any this team can still win the cup with what they have now. Resigning Chris Kelly is a must, as is Gregory Campbell, Shawn Thornton and Danile Paille. Johnny Boychuk would be nice to get locked up only if at a reasonable price, because i thik cheaper options are available and really how much longer until Dougie Hamilton gets a shot at a bottom pairing to bring him along slow. Plus Matt Bartkowski will be looking to make the team full time next year as well. Tuukka Rask will got locked up no doubt in my mind PC wants Rask in the fold and has made it clear he will be they number 1 goaltender in due time. So with alot of these guys due for a raise and even if its only slightly a raise they will need every penny to keep them all, leaving really no room to aquire someone else. Plus with the CBA coming to an end who knows what will happen with the current salary cap it could get pushed down from what it already is. So many question so few answers.

  2. If the Blackhawks need a center, I am sure Ducks could offer Saku Koivu at a reasonable price.
    Time to move the older players and rebuild that team.

  3. As a Leaf fan I hope the Bruins don’t resign Thornton. I’ll even say please.

  4. Koivu with Kane/Sharp on the wings? Not going to lie that’s a pretty sick sounding line up!

  5. The blackhawks dont need Koivu. Giving up an asset for a guy who wont help them win a cup doesnt make sense. As for the bruins, I wouldnt be worrying about free agents just yet. When the time comes however iceman is right, they have to make room for guys who are ready to make the jump fulltime. Corvo who cant seem to stick with anyone will be gone. They could lose Paille and Campbell and not be hurt but Thornton would be hard to replace. Lucky for the bruins they dont have to worry about the top six, but even if they did have high priced guys going UFA I dont think they would have much trouble signing them.

  6. Everything is speculation until the next CBA is approved. Having said that, currently Capgeek lists a $13.4m projected cap space entering next season not including the $4m that should be freed up on Savard’s contract (get well Marc, now helping coach Peterboro, I believe). I personally don’t think the Bruins can part with Kelly due to his versatility and leadership, a Mark Recchi with added youth. I expect Kelly to be the next signing. Campbell, Thornton and Paille make up arguably the best 4th line in hockey logging nearly 10 minutes of high energy and tenacity. Campbell and Paille are monsters on the PK. Thornton is a hockey god in Boston. Altho Paille may become expendable due to Caron. Corvo is everything they expected from Kaberle except with a shoot mentality and a plus rating. I do think Boychuk is expendable, benefiting from playing along side Chara. I don’t think Bartkowski is the answer but Kampfer may be. And yeah, Rask is going nowhere. As for Pouliot, well we’ll just have to see how his year plays out. Just my thoughts as an armchair GM.

  7. Chiarelli I’m sure also realizes that Seguin’s entry level contract will be up soon. At the rate he is playing right now he could sign for anywhere from 5 million plus. Marchand and Lucic’s contract also ends the same time as Seguin’s. Chiarelli will want to keep these three pieces in place.

    He will resign Rask 100%.

    Depending on how much Kelly, Campbell, Pouliot, Paille, Thornton, Corvo and Boychuk demand he might not be willing to resign them all. Pouliot and Corvo in my opinion are expendable. Kelly has shown that he is a great third liner and gives them depth. The Campbell, Paille, Thornton line is one of the best 4th lines in the game. He will like to keep it that way, but may have his hands tied Charelli will want to keep his high end players.

    Tim Thomas’ contract will be up around this time. I don’t think he will be back with Bruins, maybe even the league.

  8. Kampfer has done nothing to prove he is as good as Corvo. Kampfer is fine with his suit on during games.

  9. Although Corvo is playing very well and so is Pouliot, they are probably the most expendable of the group whose contracts are up after this season.

    Kelly is great on the 3rd line, and Paille is the most expendable of the 4th liners. Thornton is a decent player as well as a tough guy and Campbell is the Broons’ best 4th line center in many years.

    Tuukka is the goalie of the future and he will be signed and will NOT be traded. Boychuk should be resigned as well.

    The Broons are probably a better team this year than last because of Seguin’s breakout, but winning the cup will be harder if Pittsburgh is healthy. A Boston-Pittsburgh conference final would be a great one.

  10. @Dabroons – big game tonight then!

  11. As a leafs fan, I accept the risk we took with Phil Kessel. Albeit it stings more and more when I think what you got with Tyler and Dougie… but what truly hurts was our Rask Raycroft deal.

  12. you know, it seems everytime i check this website, Spector shoots down rumours. NEVER has he confirmed something that another reporter or insider heard. I find this very frustrating. So tell us, Mr Spector, are there ANY rumours out there that have some truth?

  13. Mike, you need to check in more frequently. When rumors make sense, or if I believe there’s basis of truth in them, I say so, and do so, on a regular basis. Problem is, most rumors usually have little basis in truth or fact.

  14. Boychuck should come back home! the Oilers need some heavy d

  15. Actually I agree with Mike. SPECTOR’S NOTES are generally some variation of “No truth to this…” , “Forget about this…” , “I doubt very much” , “Will never happen…” etc. Yes Lyle I understand that most rumors have little basis, but re-reading variations of the same commentary over and over again *is* frustrating. Look at it from our POV. I would suggest withholding this kind of “analysis” completely. If you can confirm some basis of truth and add some nugget of “journalism” to the rumor, great! But wading through copycat paragraphs of you saying “that’s stupid” takes up too much time.

    But hey its your blog, you’ll do whatever you want!

  16. Boychuk– heavy hitter, killer shot, getting better at deciding when to pinch, but a raise on top of his $1.8m salary may be one place the Bruins may look for a cheaper option.

  17. J.O. – What you might find “frustrating”, the majority of folks who visit this site find reasonable opinion, and appreciate my viewpoints.

    Again, most rumors have little or no basis in truth or fact, and I’m going to call it the way I see it. You have your opinion, and I have mine, and a means with which to express that opinion, which has turned into a nice way to make a living.

    I appreciate your feedback, but I see no reason to change my style now.

  18. For the guys that are complaining about Lyle’s repeat shoot downs and rightly pointing out stupid rumours perhaps your frustration should go more towrds the guys posting that garbage.
    if you will notice guys like garrioch/Eklund and a couple more are always repeating the same rumours or making up silly trades that make no sense.
    i would expect lyle is just as sick and tired of commenting on these guys as you are reading them but that is what his site is here to do.
    too many goofballs think because they are writers they must sound like they are connected.
    how often do you see real writers/experts like the TSN guys bring up trade rumours more than once?
    keep up the good work lyle,most of us are behind you and see it is not always an easy gig.

  19. J.O, & Mike….

    Sorry guys, I have to disagree with both of you. I have been a regular visitor to this site for several years, dating back to before the lock out. I visit here on almost a daily basis, more than once a day approaching the trade deadline, draft and July 1 every year. I have to say, Lyle is usually right on in his assessments of rumors put out there by the rest of the media. And on the occasion that he had it wrong, he is usually the one to point out that he was wrong.

    If you take a moment and read the header on his home page, he never claims to be a rumor breaker. It says, and I quote: “Lyle Richardson (A.K.A. Spector) compiles trade rumors from around the NHL, plus provides commentary on the latest NHL headlines, state of the game, Canadian teams, playoff predictions, and more.” He’s not in the trenches standing in the locker rooms with the players getting the feel of a players or talking to the assistant coaches secretary to see if he got any phone calls today. He’s providing a location to see what those pundits are saying, and giving his opinion and analysis on those rumors based off the over all picture, as well as the source it came from.

    Fact is, Im a Flyers fan. I know what websites to go to and how to find out the latest news/rumors or happenings for the Flyers without the help of Spectors website. But I don’t know, nor have the time to go find out what’s going on with the rest of the league, and this has been the best website, in my opinion, to find the complete information I want to know.

    As he said, you guys are entitled to your opinion and I respect that. But it’s my opinion that the information and analysis is tops out on the net, so I will continue to visit this site.

    Thanks Lyle!

  20. Bruins to keep Kelly,Thornton,Rask and Boychuk
    Bruins to let go for youth or cheeper free agents Paille,Pouliot and Corvo.
    Campbells on my bubble has good games and bad.
    Must save the cap space when Seguins contract is up at all costs.

  21. TopRightCorner and Cheesehead (Marc): Thanks for the support! Cheers!

  22. Most trade rumours are b.s. They’re fun to read but seldom happen. Keep ’em coming Lyle!

  23. Owned….

  24. Re-sign Campbell (around 1.5), Rask (around 3.25), Paille (around 1.25; although wouldn’t be too sad to see him go), Thornton (900K), Kelly (around 3)

    I would be open to letting Corvo and Boychuk (will probably sign with the Oilers) walk but I would make an effort to resign Johnny.