NHL Trade and Free Agent Rumors – January 20, 2012.

The latest on Ales Hemsky, Josh Harding, Jaromir Jagr, Hal Gill, Wojtek Wolski, Steve Mason, and more.

EDMONTON JOURNAL: David Staples reports former NHL GM and Sportsnet analyst Doug MacLean believes Oilers winger Ales Hemsky will “most definitely be traded at the deadline.” MacLean listed Ottawa, Washington, Vancouver, Detroit and San Jose as potential destinations for Hemsky, while fellow analyst Nick Kypreos listed Chicago, Pittsburgh and Detroit. MacLean doesn’t believe Hemsky will fetch a big return for the Oilers.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: That’s because of his injury history and poor numbers this season. Still, I agree with MacLean that Hemsky will be moved by the trade deadline. It’s just a question of where.

STARTRIBUNE.COM: Michael Russo reports Minnesota Wild goalie Josh Harding isn’t oblivious to his name being floated in the trade rumor mill. It’s rumored he could be shopped for a top-six forward. He’s also an unrestricted free agent this summer.

Jagr hoping to remain a Flyer.

CSNPHILLY.COM: Tim Panaccio reports Flyers forward Jaromir Jagr has enjoyed this season with the club, and hopes to re-sign a one-year extension. There’s been some discussion between Jagr’s agent and Flyers GM Paul Holmgren, but Jagr doesn’t want to negotiate during the season to avoid it becoming a distraction. Panaccio points out the Flyers current have over $58 million committed to next season’s payroll, which could make it a tight squeeze to fit a new contract for Jagr under the salary cap.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Holmgren has proven capable of doing a nifty job of juggling cap numbers to fit in contracts for players he wants to retain.If there’s a way to get it done, without the loss of another quality player, he will.

LA PRESSE: Marc Antoine Godin speculated how much longer defenseman Hal Gill will be with the Canadiens as their season slowly slips away. Godin noted the Flyers, Blackhawks and Sharks are believed in the market for blueline depth.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: The Habs shouldn’t have too much difficulty moving Gill if they go into “sell” mode in the coming weeks.

DENVER POST: Adrian Dater, responding to a reader’s query, dismissed the notion of the Colorado Avalanche bringing back forward Wojtek Wolski, who’s currently on the outs with the NY Rangers.

COLUMBUS DISPATCH: Aaron Portzline, in a recent live chat, suggested goalie Steve Mason’s days with the Blue Jackets may be drawing to a close, either via trade or waivers.

CHICAGO SUN-TIMES: Adam L. Jahns reports the Blackhawks are in the market for a defenseman and veteran center. He listed the Ducks, Oilers and Blue Jackets as the only sellers in the Western Conference at this time, while Buffalo, Montreal, Tampa Bay, Carolina, NY Islanders and possibly the Winnipeg Jets could be Eastern Conference sellers. GM Stan Bowman is willing to part with draft picks, prospects or minor leaguers, but wouldn’t rule out moving a depth player.


  1. Who do the Blackhawks have that the Habs might want for Gill?

  2. If the Hawks do want a D-man and veteran center then picks and prospects for Ducks Toni Lydman and Saku Koivu would seem to be a decent fit. Both are affordable but Koivu would have to waive his NTC

  3. Makes me wonder what kind of dressing room guy Wolski is. He gets bounced around constantly, can’t stick with a team. At one point, earlier in his career, he was looking like a top six forward.

  4. Koivu isn’t getting dealt. (extremely low likelihood)

    If the Hawks know what’s good for them, they won’t touch Hal Gill.

    Hensky is destined to be moved for a second round pick and minor leaguers on deadline day 15 minutes before the deadline. That’s about his worth right now (and Tambellini will take that long to realize it).

  5. MJR, I think you’re bang on in your assessment of Hemsky’s current value. No way does he fetch a first-round pick or even a top-4 d-man with how he’s played this season.

  6. MJR – Yeah, why would anybody want Hal Gill. In a three year period he went to two Stanley Cup Finals, including one Cup win with the Pens where anybody who watched knew he was a key piece, only to move to Montreal and be a key piece of a team that had no right going anywhere and taking them to the conference finals beating both Washington and his old team Pittsburgh. Yeah, going into the playoffs, when the rules unofficially change, why would anybody want a fantastic playoff performing shutdown d-man like Gill. I’d imagine so many teams want him Montreal will start a minor bidding war over him – he’s that highly regarded come playoff time.

  7. Agreed on Gill. Haven’t seen much of him this year but he was a beast in the playoffs. Teams will have lots of interest.

  8. Seriously. What do people expect of this guy? Have you seen him kill a 5-on-3? He is a monster.

  9. Winnipeg would be willing to ship Hainsey and Antropov to the Hawks.

  10. Agreed on Gill. The guy is a giant who kills penalties, shut downs, clears the area in front of the goalie (something Chicago have been struggling with since Buff left), and most of all shows up when it matters. Yeah he’s getting up there in years but the teams looking to getting him are thinking playoffs which is where he shines the most. I personally hope Gillis makes a play for the guy.

  11. Gill and Scott as dmen, pull the goalie and go with four forwards.

  12. So what went wrong with Mason @ Columbus, his rookie year was really good ?
    Flash in the pan or just playing for a bad team ?

  13. Sure you can get a penalty kill, but you’re also sacrificing goals. So while picking him up might make your PK woes disappear, be careful what you wish for, cuz then you’re going to have offensive woes suddenly plague your team when you have this defensive black hole on the back end.

    They can have him and his “playoff experience”. You solve one problem and create two.

  14. Hemsky won’t be traded to a division rival so the Canucks are out.

  15. Hemsky can be traded anywhere as he’s a rental player and isn’t really a big part of the Oilers team at the moment anywhere. Anything more than a 3rd round pick is overpaying for him though and as a Blackhawks fan I hope they do not go after him. He’s not at all a Quenneville type player and really wouldn’t fit into the system.

    Hall Gill on the other hand would be a great pickup. Hawks would prefer to get a top 4, but Gill would replace O’Donnell on the bottom pairing with Montador. Defensively he’s no more likely to get beat than O’Donnell is and as some have noted, he would be a huge help in clearing the crease which the Hawks have struggled with all season. Not to mention they could use some more size on the back end. If it doesn’t cost too much I hope they’re able to get him.

  16. Only got one name for all those steve mason supporters ” Andrew Raycroft” Calder Winner and then…

  17. Before Raycroft……Jim Carey

  18. Any chance the leafs trade Connoly? There would be a market for a guy on a pretty good contract with only one year left… they have a glut at centre and are apparently looking to acquire another one.

  19. I was hoping Boston signed Gill in the off-season.
    Gill with Chara would be scary together
    Gill played a great playoff series vs Boston and almost beat them.
    I would love to see him return to Boston but don’t see us dealing with the enemy.
    He should fetch a second rounder and prospect.
    He is getting older and isn’t a scoring threat but does shut down top lines.

  20. Steve mason will be a good goalie….. Somewhere else
    I get the feeling that Jeff Carter, when cleared to return to action, may not even suit up for the bj’s, because if Columbus wants a max return for him, they’ll have to make sure he doesn’t get hurt again. When he is a week away from returning, the chatter should increase.

    To jackets nazem kadri korbanian Holzer mike komisarek 1st+3rd this year

    To leafs Jeff Carter and Sami Pahlson

    Not only does Columbus get rid of Jeff’s big contract, but essentially 2 1sts and two d-men ready to play now. Kadri and Holzer are rfa’s and IMO could be nice pieces for the jackets going foreword.
    The leafs get their stud 1st line center and Pahlson played for burke in his anahiem days.

  21. I think that’s overpaying for Jeff Carter. Maybe take away Komisarek. Either way, I have a feeling he won’t be traded. They gave up a lot to get him and given his contract they basically made a big commitment to him. I’m sure they would trade him if the deal was right, I just get the feeling they’ll hang on to him.

  22. Gill and Moen to Vancouver for Ballard, a pick + prospect.

  23. I got another name for yas…

    another carey….

    Carey Price… great first year, lost the start the next. Mason could still have it in him but he needs to reestablish his confidence…

  24. If you took away komisarek you could not afford the deal.
    Cap geek says the leafs have 3 ish million in cap space.
    Any deal the leafs make has to involve komisarek Lombardi or lyles.
    When lyles is cleared to come back, komisarek should be the odd man out.

  25. @AceNewton That deal only works if the pick is a high fist, and the prospect a bluechipper. Moen is have a great year, adds size and toughness to Montreal which it needs. Gill, as others have noted, will be in demand so the offeer has to be good. Ballard has struggle these last two years and has a huge contrat for too many years.

  26. ballard has to go. he’s a decent dman but he needs a change of scenery, somewhere where there isnt any pressure on him… ballard and ryan parent to carolina for tuomo ruutu. ruutu isnt going resign in carolina and would look great with hansen and malhotra in the playoffs. even if he doesnt resign in the summer, canucks still get rid of ballard and carolina gets an offensive dman and a decent 3rd pairing dman

  27. Well it be battle for ruutu because the bruins are talking to carolina for him and Gleason, so good luck … Even though its not on here. I would Trade Boychuk and maybe a pick for gleason and Caron and some one else for ruutu.

    On the other hand i wouldnt mind seeing us get gill back either and there rumors floating out there that the bruins might be looking to steal some players from montreal…. would love to see that happen

  28. If Mason is waived bank on the Devils or Bolts getting in on him. He is young, showed he can play well … even if it was a flash in the pan to date he still showcased he HAS that talent. A Tampa/NJ have great goalie coaches and are both in need of a young future netminder. Mason can fit that bill and the change of scenery might help him a lot and both have vet netminders to mentor him (something he has been missing in a big way).

    Some off the wall teams that could show interest are also Edmonton, Anaheim, Phoenix, and New York Islanders.

  29. Anaheim will be last years devils in the second half so no changes to foundation of hillier,getz, perry,fowler or Ryan. I might see selanne coming to Detroit for a second rounder or kindl and koivu if he waves the no trade to Ottawa. They might get Bobby butler in return.