The latest on the Maple Leafs, Senators, Capitals, Coyotes, Sabres and much more.
OTTAWA SUN: Bruce Garrioch reports sources claim the Sabres are shopping Chris Stewart, Christian Ehrhoff, Luke Adam and Drew Stafford, plus they’re willing to listen to offers for Marcus Foligno, Johan Larsson and Chad Ruhwedel…The Canucks will likely have to surrender a draft pick if they don’t select one of their assistant GMs (Laurence Gilman and Lorne Henning) as one of the replacements. Coyotes assistant GM Brad Treliving has surfaced as a top candidate…Garrioch claims Pittsburgh and Chicago were both close on deal for Canucks center Ryan Kesler. He believes the Canucks could revisit that possibility in June…Lots of changes could be coming for the Hurricanes…The Kings could be a landing spot for Mike Cammalleri via free agency in July…Garrioch claims one suggestion for possible destinations this summer for Martin Brodeur could be Pittsburgh to mentor Marc-Andre Fleury…There’s talk Panthers GM Dale Tallon might not be on solid footing. Garrioch suggests the Panthers should add Doug MacLean to give Tallon some help.
SPECTOR’S NOTE: I believe the Sabres are more interested in shopping their pricey veterans than their young players, but one can never fully dismiss the possibility of moving one or two of the latter for the right price…The Ducks had serious interest in Kesler. Blackhawks GM Stan Bowman claimed he wasn’t among the clubs pursuing Kesler. Maybe he was, maybe he wasn’t, but the asking price was likely more than Bowman was willing to pay…Cammalleri’s tenure with the Kings didn’t end well (contract dispute resulting in arbitration, followed by Kings GM Dean Lombardi eventually trading him to Calgary), but he was linked to them leading up to the trade deadline…I don’t see the Penguins adding Brodeur to mentor Fleury. If anything, I could see them trying to replace the latter if he has another lousy playoff performance…I also doubt the Panthers hire Doug MacLean.
NBC SPORTS: Jason Brough recently analyzed this summer’s UFA goalie market. Among the notables are Ryan Miller, Jonas Hiller, Jaroslav Halak, Martin Brodeur, Tim Thomas, Brian Elliott and Chad Johnson.
SPECTOR’S NOTE: The Blues are keen to re-sign Miller. Hiller’s struggled of late which is generating speculation the Ducks could part ways with him if they come up short in the postseason. Brodeur will attract some interest if he still wants to play, as could Thomas. Johnson could be the sleeper of the bunch, just like Anton Khudobin was last year.
TORONTO SUN: Steve Simmons cites a report out of New Jersey suggesting new Maple Leafs president Brendan Shanahan would like to Devils coach Pete DeBoer behind the Leafs bench next season…Simmons believes Leafs defenseman Cody Franson (a restricted free agent this summer) has less trade value now than he did a year ago.
TORONTO STAR: Kevin McGran suggests replacing Randy Carlyle as head coach and trading goalie James Reimer could be among the big changes for the Leafs this summer.
SPECTOR’S NOTE: It’s believed the Devils hope to re-sign DeBoer. I don’t see Carlyle returning as Leafs coach. Reimer and probably Franson could be dealt this summer.
OTTAWA SUN: Bruce Garrioch believes the Senators won’t be the same club when they return next season. They not only have to decide if they’ll re-sign free agents Milan Michalek, Ales Hemsky and Matt Kassian, but also if they’ll offer contract extensions this summer to Jason Spezza, Bobby Ryan, Craig Anderson, Clarke MacArthur and Marc Methot.
SPECTOR’S NOTE: Read my take on possible moves by the Senators here.
FOXSPORTS ARIZONA: Craig Morgan reports the Phoenix Coyotes off-season actions will speak volumes about their future. While GM Don Maloney is reluctant to promote too many young players too soon, particularly if they fail to add veteran pieces via trade or free agency.
SPECTOR’S NOTE: Hat tip to GJ Berg. After missing two straight playoffs, the Coyotes face a crucial off-season. I think you’ll see them draw on some of their depth in young players as trade bait for some established talent to bolster next season’s lineup.
CSNWASHINGTON.COM: Chuck Gormley recently responded to reader questions about the Capitals. He suggests the possibility of a “mutual breakup” between the Capitals and GM George McPhee. He doesn’t believe they’ll trade Alexander Ovechkin and Nicklas Backstrom but could see Mike Green dealt. The Caps need a gritty top-four defenseman, of which the best in this summer’s market could be Pittsburgh’s Brooks Orpik. He’s heard Mikhail Grabovski is seeking $5 million per season. He feels the Caps could re-sign him if he accepts $4 million per.
SPECTOR’S NOTE: The Capitals are a mess but they don’t need to completely blow up the roster. They must bolster their defensive game and their depth at center.