NHL Trade and Free Agent Rumors – May 31, 2012.

The effect of Lidstrom’s anticipated retirement upon pending UFA Ryan Suter, potential destinations for Kings goalie Jonathan Bernier, and an update on the Rangers.


Could Suter replace Lidstrom on the Red Wings?

THE TENNESSEAN: Josh Cooper reports today’s anticipated announcement long-time Detroit Red Wings defenseman Nicklas Lidstrom will retire could have an effect upon Predators pending UFA blueliner Ryan Suter, who’s been linked with the Red Wings in rumors if he’s unable to re-sign with the Predators by July 1.  Cooper acknowledged that possibility, but also pointed out the Red Wings core is ageing, and the Predators eliminated them in the first round of this year’s playoffs. Suter would also face considerable pressure to fill Lidstrom’s shoes if he were to join the Wings.

MLIVE.COM: Ansar Khan believes Suter would help fill the void left by Lidstrom’s retirement. Khan noted the Predators are expected to being contract talks with the Suter camp this week, and the Philadelphia Flyers and Minnesota Wild could pursue Suter if he becomes a UFA on July 1. What could help tilt the balance in the Red Wings favor is if they could also sign New Jersey’s captain – and Suter’s friend – Zach Parise. Khan listed other free agent options if the Wings were unable to sign Suter, but none are as talented.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Some folks seem to think Suter joining the Red Wings is a fait accompli, but one shouldn’t dismiss the possibility of his re-signing with the Predators. Money isn’t the only factor (family, championship potential), and the pressure of replacing an icon like Lidstrom could also be a factor.

ESPN.COM: Craig Custance looked at  trade destinations for LA Kings backup Jonathan Bernier, listing the Tampa Bay Lightning as the favorite, with the Columbus Blue Jackets and Toronto Maple Leafs other possibilities.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Bernier could be dealt this summer, but the Kings aren’t just going to give him away, and considering he’s under contract for one more season, and would be a restricted free agent after that, they’re in no hurry to trade him. Not saying he won’t be dealt this summer, just that there’s no rush to get a deal done.

NEW YORK DAILY NEWS: Pat Leonard reports Rangers GM Glen Sather isn’t willing to discuss possible off-season moves for his club, other than to say he won’t include young players like Chris Kreider in any trades.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Expect the Rangers to be active this summer, especially in the UFA market, and perhaps in the trade market as well, which could include revisiting the Rick Nash trade talks from last February.


  1. Ansar Khan believes Suter would help fill the void left by Lidstrom’s retirement.

    Gee, that’s a really bold statement … no kidding!

  2. If the Rangers do not include any young prospects, they won’t get Nash, it is that simple.

  3. Suter is not an offensive power like Lidstrom. Suter will replace Stuart is more accurate. Detroit will still need a PP quarterback unless they use a forward on the point. I hope Detroit signs him to use up some of that cap space, I think Suter is a little overrated. Good defensemen but not offensive. $5.5 mil per year not much more.

    • Agreed. I think he benefits largely because of Shea Weber. He has very little offensive expectation on the Preds. He changes teams for a big pay day and fans are going to be all over him.

      He’s more of a Jay Bouwmeister (spelling?)

    • I think Kronwall will take over as the QB, with White and whoever is Lidstrom’s replacement taking turns as the other point. Suter could fill in admirably.

    • Look for Smith to develop into that PP quarterback. He should be playing everyday next year with plenty of PP op[ortunity.

  4. NYR will want to make Gabs as the main piece of the Nash deal.

    • I disagree, the team needs more scoring and trading your best pure goal scorer for another does not add Offense.

      I wouldnt be suprised if it did involve Dubinsky, a d man, and a 1st rounder. but gaborik is going no where.

  5. Tom, Sather said he won’t include anyone like Kreider that doesn’t mean he won’t give up Dubinski, Del Zotto and I could see either Anisimov, Zuccarello or Haglin added to the deal – Nash and a draft pick. By far, the biggest disappointments for NY in my opinion were Richards and Gaborick, but NY will not move them – they will spend the bucks to have a $21MM first line.

    What is going to make things interesting is that I think a lot of teams are going to be making trades to upgrade the chemistry of their team. Parity is prevalent in the NHL and a majority of teams know it is just a matter of tweaking a player or two to get over the hump.

    • You will need to give up at least Del Zotto and Haglin. Dubinski has negative value. Zuccarello will not even be a Ranger next year.

  6. Richards a dissapointment?
    He took that team to 1st place in the East and into the Conference finals with is smart play and clutch goal scoring/offense. he is one of hte best all-rounded players in the league. Without him the Rangers would have struggled to secure a playoff spot.

    Ryan Sutter couldn’t fill one third of Lidstrom’s role. Were talking one of the greatest ever vs a current #2 d-man. he will sign in Detroit, but he will not replace Lidstrom by any means.

  7. The Red Wings have several defensemen in their system who have learned to play well like Lidstrom. Let those defensemen step forward and continue the Wings’ youth movement.

    The Predators are making the playoffs consistently. Ryan Suter has done well in Nashville, and he would like to remain if possible. Suter and the Predators have less than a month to make a new deal happen.

  8. I think the Rangers can afford to give up Stepan, Anisomov and Hagelin for Nash. It wouldn’t hurt them to lose those guys.
    Nash – Richards -Gaborik
    Kreider – Dubinsky – Callahan

    They end up with a hell of a top 6 and can fill in the empty roster spots through inexpensive free agents

  9. The Predators came close this year, much closer than Detroit, and much closer than Detroit is going to get, with Lidstrom retiring, even if Suter goes there.

    Maybe this is Nashvilles time to to open the flood gates and go for it. Resign Weber, Suter and go for Parise. Spend up to the cap limit and go for it. They have solid goaltending and defense, just need more help up front, and Parise could help do that.

    They only have 4 players signed going into the 2013-2014 season. So this is the year, because after that it may be rebuilding all over again.

  10. Your right murph. If Poile can convince Suter of what you just said, and then convince weber of the same thing with Suter behind it, then convince Parise ith the help of Suter and the presence of Webber and Rinne that they are in it to win it.

    Maybe the only change in all of these players we are rumoring is that they all play on Nashville next year.

  11. The Rangers wont land Nash if they aren’t willing to trade value young players. Nash’s trade value will be at its peak during the draft, Columbus is in the drivers seat in this trade. Its a win/win situation for them regardless, if they trade Nash or not. They will ask for ALOT in return, more than double the amount during the trade deadline. Teams like the Rangers will have give up more than they want to land Nash. I don’t think its gonna happen in NY.

  12. Montreal is now the leagues biggest joke, McDonagh looks great for the Rangers, while we still have Scott Blowmez, then we sign Kaberle, and trade for that bum Bourque..We also cant draft worth a lick, Kreider makes Louie Leblanc look sad.

  13. I am not sure if the Rangers will be that busy in the UFA market. Maybe they could add some depth for the bottom two lines, especially if Prust leaves, but i don’t think they will go for high priced UFAs because they just are not that good.

    I think Nash will be a Ranger unless Craig Patrick has too much influence in the decision making and pulls a Jagr-style deal. He wanted too much from the Rangers back when Jagr was a Penguin. He ended up taking less from Washington. He has a big ego.