A list of 12 “big time players” who would benefit from a change of scenery, and more on Drew Doughty. Enjoy!

BLEACHER REPORT: Keegan McNally listed twelve “big time” players who might benefit from a change of scenery. Among them: Drew Doughty of the LA Kings, Shea Weber of the Nashville Predators, Loui Eriksson of the Dallas Stars, Jason Spezza of the Ottawa Senators, Paul Stastny of the Colorado Avalanche, Rick Nash of the Columbus Blue Jackets, Evgeni Nabokov of the NY Islanders, Roberto Luongo of the Vancouver Canucks, Shane Doan of the Phoenix Coyotes, Jarome Iginla and Miikka Kiprusoff of the Calgary Flames, and Alexander Semin of the Washington Capitals.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: I really don’t think a “change of scenery” will honestly improve the performances of most of these players. For many of them, their current teams aren’t the problem. Doughty, Weber, Eriksson, Luongo, Iginla and Kiprusoff aren’t going to play any better on other teams. They’re already among the league’s elite, and changing teams won’t make them become any more elite than they already are. Spezza’s problem is injuries, not the Senators. Eriksson had a five-game scoring streak, plus scored in two more games, during the 11 games Brad Richards missed last season, so I doubt his stats will be adversely affected this season with Richards now a Ranger.

Semin  and Statsny might improve if he played on another team, but then again, they might not. There’s little evidence to suggest their current teams are hindering their performances.  Nabokov has yet to play a single regular season game for the Islanders, so we really can’t pass judgment until he has a few games with them under his belt. Until the Blue Jackets landed Jeff Carter, I would’ve agreed Nash would probably fare better elsewhere. Doan doesn’t want to leave Phoenix, and at this late stage in his career, I doubt he’ll elevate his game much more than he previously has.

HOCKEYBUZZ.COM: “Eklund” claims he’s “not convinced” about the existence of rumors of offers sheets for Drew Doughty, but suggests “the mere mention” of offer sheets could force the issue, meaning a possible contract signing with the Kings.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: I doubt it. As I previously noted, if a team were going to pitch an offer sheet to Doughty, they would’ve done it by now. Of the 9 teams with the available cap space who might be able to send him an “unmatchable” offer sheet – St.Louis, Winnipeg, Phoenix, Florida, Nashville, Dallas, NY Islanders, Carolina and Colorado – all are teams which in recent years have stuck as close to the cap floor as possible. Sending him, say, a $10 million per season offer sheet, which is likely what it would take to keep the Kings from matching, doesn’t seem feasible for those teams.

The Ottawa Senators were previously big spenders, but they’ve indicated they’re rebuilding with affordable young talent, and I don’t see Bryan Murray deviating from that plan now. The traditional big spenders are all maxed out and cannot possibly afford to send Doughty an offer sheet. Any “threat” of an offer sheet probably has no bearing on the status of the Doughty contract talks.

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11 Responses to NHL Rumors from the Blogosphere – September 27, 2011.

  1. CR says:

    Though inexplicably the most popular, those are the most horribly embarrassing examples of the hockey blogosphere.

  2. ACR says:

    Come on now, if Eriksson had come to the Pens instead of Neal his career would’ve been elevated to a whole new level. With Malkin or Crosby, he could’ve been the Jagr to either of those Marios. He could have a shot at trophies and cups. With Dallas he’s going nowhere fast, considering that team won’t be any type of threat for at least the next half decade.

  3. Aj says:

    Sad to say ACR is right. However that hinges on the ownership situation. Once that gets settled shortly and if the new owner is willing to be aggressive and turn this ship around fast, it can be done within 3 years. We all saw how well the Stars were last season and they are a top line centre away from being that again. With some new money and no self imposed cap, they could easily buy one from free agency.
    The only issue they have coming is to restock the cupboard some more, but if they draft well over the next 3 years and make smart college signings, that can be taken care off.
    Eriksson will have to simply be made apart of the solution and they’ll have to pony up for another top line playmaker for him to play with. Given his age, its an investment I would be more than willing to make.

  4. MJR I says:

    You could immediately rule Colorado out; they don’t have a first rounder next year.

  5. Sandy says:

    Any offer sheet would cost a team 4 first round picks. For any team re-building that would be very foolish.

    The Bleacher Report? Who is running that? Do they spend all that time thinking up such garbage?

  6. mojo19 says:

    Louie Eriksson is a stud, no way Nieuwendyk would trade him. He has a great cap hit and that team is on a tight budget trying to stay competitive. I actually like the Michael Ryder and Sheldon Sourray signings a lot. Fiddler, Dvorak ,and Adam Pardy were all good depth signings and I think Dallas will surprise some people this year and stay competitive and in the playoff hunt.

  7. mojo19 says:

    Just a question though, if everyone hates the BleacherReport and hockeybuzz so much, why even report on what they say?

    I agree there is a lot of trash on there, but sometimes they bring up relevant rumors that will develop into something. And interesting hockey trade rumors are the reason people frequent sites such as those, and this one as well. So tone back the negativity guys.

  8. tourbear says:

    Are Habs shopping Yannick Weber?

  9. ACR says:

    There is one scenario there I see that make some theoretical sense, although in reality won’t happen. And that’s Florida. The have money and are now showing they’re willing to use it.

    Plus, since they’ve been a poor team for so long, they’ve already had years of top tier draft picks. They have a wealth of prospects and will be promoting new players every year, so 4 1st round picks isn’t quit as crushing a blow to them. Especially if their performance picks up and their pick number goes down. And given that they have a stockpile of prospects, they might be able to generate other draft picks via trade.

    St.Louis,Phoenix, Dallas, NY Islanders just don’t have the ability because of all the business turmoil surrounding them.

    And Winnipeg, Nashville, Carolina and Colorado are notoriously strict payroll teams, so they’re ruled out too.

    But Florida does not have those same probelms and have said they want to build to win now.

  10. gameon63 says:

    Ultimately you have to figure the Kings are going to have to do something they’d rather not to get Doughty under contract and that will likely be shortening the term, if they don’t then it could get really ugly.
    the Weber situation is likely to be a trade watch as Nashville can throw all the money they want at him (he would get the same money anywhere he went) but they can’t give him the supporting cast he needs, he saw that when they gave away Franson and Lombardi to Toronto and let Sullivan and Ward get away. at the end of the day Nashville isn’t as good a team as they were last year not matter how much their rookies contribute.
    what Luongo craves more than anything is the respect he thinks a Cup will bring him and he’s not likely to find a team that will get him any closer than Vancouver, if they were to win it this year then i could see him being moved (perhaps back to Florida) and Schneider taking on the top job with Lack as the backup otherwise look for Schneider to continue as the league’s best backup until Gillis figures his value is at it’s peak.
    Inginla has one year left on his contract after this season so the Flames are on borrowed time and Feaster will have to trade him before then as Sutter left him nothing in the way of prospects (Erixon refusing to sign forced Feaster to trade their top prospect to the Rangers) to engineer a rebuild. even if the Flames turn it around and make the playoffs this year their minor system is such a mess that it’s going to take years and luck before they’re able to graduate elite players to the NHL and their aging core will be gone before then.
    Semin won’t find a team that he’ll be able to produce on like Washington and they won’t be able to afford him so i see him moving on and disappointing whoever signs him. if he is traded it’ll likely be around deadline time when a team thinks they’re one player away.

  11. farleybear says:

    I think the most interesting team of the ‘nine’ teams that could send an offer sheet Doughty’s way is Nashville. The draft picks they’d have to surrender to LA wouldn’t be that high cause they should do well this year. Most likely 20th or later. They could EASILY move Ryan Suter and his $3.5 million contract and probably get a couple of higher 1st rounders they’re giving up for Doughty in the process. They would also be ridding themselves the headache of Suter’s contract negotiations cause he MAY want to test the UFA waters to see how much he could get.

    Offer Doughty $8.5 million per season for 5 years. LA wouldn’t match that. Then it’s all about the math; 8.5-3.5= $5 million more salary than they had before the offer. That would put them at $55 million which is still in the bottom half of the league.

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