Sunday NHL Rumor Roundup – December 11, 2011.

A collection of trade and free agent rumors from the Ottawa Sun, Edmonton Journal and Buffalo News, plus the latest on the Blackhawks and Kings.

OTTAWA SUN: Bruce Garrioch reports  the Canadiens surprise acquisition of Tomas Kaberle had better work out for the Habs, or it could cost GM Pierre Gauthier his job…The Capitals would love to move Alexander Semin, but there’s “no market for a struggling, underachieving winger making too much money these days”…Don’t expect Martin Brodeur to be moved at the trade deadline. He’s already got three Cup championships under his belt and doesn’t have to prove anything…If the Bruins fail to re-sign Chris Kelly, his former team, the Ottawa Senators, might be interested in bringing him back…Leafs GM Brian Burke could be in the market for a center once his self-imposed holiday trade freeze of December 9 to 27th is over. Garrioch suggested Columbus’ Derick Brassard might be a target, reports Blue Jackets GM was spotted at a Toronto Marlies game last Saturday…Kings GM Dean Lombardi is reportedly working the phones trying to find help for his struggling team. The Kings would move Dustin Penner in a second.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Kaberle had a good debut with the Habs, setting up both goals in their 2-1 win over the Devils…If Semin were to be dealt, it would have to be at the trade deadline, when over half of his $6.7 million salary will have been paid out by the Capitals…Any talk of Brodeur moving on, especially to win another championship, is absurd. Brodeur will retire a Devil and likely become a right-hand man to GM Lou Lamoriello…It’s believed Bruins management is keen on re-signing Kelly…If the Leafs were to take on Brassard, they’d have to ensure they’ve got the cap space to absorb that $3.2 million per season cap hit. Right now, they don’t. Sure, they have over $2 million on LTIR, but they’d have to clear cap space when those injured players return to action…Penner’s poor play and big salary make him tough to trade, but hey! If the Hurricanes could find a taker for Kaberle’s contract, which had two more seasons on it, the Kings might be able to find someone desperate enough to take a chance on Penner, perhaps as the trade deadline nears.

Could Red Wings have interest in Hemsky?

EDMONTON JOURNAL: Jim Matheson reports the Red Wings, with $5.6 million in available cap space, could add a top-six forward later this season, and suggested they might have interest in Oilers winger Ales Hemsky. The Wings would also like a physical defenseman…Matheson also panned the Canadiens acquisition of Kaberle…He also wondered if the NY Islanders might shop defenseman Steve Staios if they’re not in the playoff hunt by the trade deadline, or if playoff-bound teams would have more interest in Calgary’s Cory Sarich

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Hemsky’s value, however, could be hurt by his history of shoulder injuries. I’ve suggested Carolina’s Tuomu Ruutu might be a better fit on the right side for the Red Wings, as he brings a more physical edge to his game…Wouldn’t be surprised if the Isles shop Staios by the deadline if they’re out of the post-season picture by then. Ditto the Flames with Sarich, who’ll be a UFA next summer and might have value as a rental player.

THE BUFFALO NEWS: Bucky Gleason reports Oilers center Sam Gagner has been on the trade block since last summer, and they’re listening to offers for Hemsky, but teams aren’t lining up for either player…Gleason also suggested the Buffalo Sabres should make inquiries into the trade status of Colorado Avalanche forward Paul Stastny, who sources say is available.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: If the Oilers can stay in playoff contention in the next couple of months, they probably won’t move Gagner or Hemsky. Stastny might be available, but at $6.6 million per season, he’s an expensive addition, one which might not be movable until the off-season, when teams have more cap space and willingness to spend.

ESPN.COM: Jesse Rogers reports Chicago Blackhawks GM Stan Bowman has been in contact with his peers, saying if he sees an opportunity to add a forward or defenseman which could help them, he’ll look at it. Rogers suspects Bowman would look for help on defense, as his team “ranks 21st in the league, giving up three goals per game; additionally, their penalty kill is 27th.” They could also use a good second-line center.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Bowman has over $5.5 million in available cap space, so don’t be surprised if he makes a move or two over the next couple of months to address his needs. We’ll likely need another month or so to determine which players might be the best targets for Bowman, though I suspect he’s got his eye on a few candidates.

LOS ANGELES TIMES: Lisa Dillman wondered if a major shakeup, either via trade or a coaching change, might be coming for the struggling Kings, who’ve lost four in a row.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Management could point to the loss of Mike Richards to injury as the prime reason for their slump, and try to stay patient in hopes they’ll ride this out, but one gets the sense this can’t go on much longer, which could force a move. This week could prove an interesting one for the Kings.

17 Comments

  1. Please, for the love of all things holy, can someone stop the Hemsky and Gagner talk? Take up a collection and send them to Europe, anything, please…..

  2. Hemsky for.some kind o d man. Gagner has shown he wants to stay with the Oiler. Great play in the past couple games…minus last nights stink bomb. The Oil need a big guy on the backend…one who doeant play a few games between suspensions or injuries. Like Sutton but he can be costly to the team

  3. I’d be surprised if the Bruins let Kelly walk. He’s a very smart, versatile player who responsible in both ends of the rink plus he’s been scoring for the Boston. While he played in Ottawa he was seemingly a very popular player with both mngt. and his team-mates however I’m not sure where he would fit in with the team today. The Senator’s needs to find room for next years wave of young players (Z’bad, Silfverberg etc.) in order to continue with their re-build. Love to see him back for his leadership but unfortunately can’t see it happening any time soon.

  4. I can’t imagine the Kings will wait much longer and play .500 hockey. After Christmas i would expect the Kings to make a move; be it on the bench or behind it.

    Obviously the vets on the Kings appear to be untouchable or very hard to accept, such as Penner. I think that if it will be an impact trade then the Kings will need to part with youth assets and draft picks.

    Anyone willing to take Penner’s salary (soon to be half) will also want a youth asset or a high draft pick.

  5. The Oilers need a Defenceman. It’s as simple as that. The last time they were competitive they had Pronger. They won’t be able to land anyone of that caliber unless they are willing to part with some high end talent. Sam Gagne however, is NOT high end talent and Hemski is injury prone. They are goint to have to stop pissing around and pay up for a quality defenceman. Either that or draft one.

  6. I think Cory Sarich will be out of Calgary. Although you can’t get a good return for him, you can definitely get a late round pick or maybe a kid that’ll help out the Heat team.

    Issue with Sarich is his numbers are definitely inflated in Calgary the last two seasons (his +/- and even points are up from playing with real NHL defenseman in Mark Giordano and the last two seasons with RR). Although he could help out a team, the time of this type of Dman is past. He’s very slow and out of position a lot. If you need more evidence of his lack of utility, Flames, who are considered by most; to have an empty cupboard especially in the defensive end… have 7 guys playing in front of him.
    At 3.6, he’s also not even cap friendly. If he moves, it’ll be like Semin… right at the deadline.

  7. Fire Terry Murray

    @Micki, the problem is the Kings have less than a million in cap space so the can’t really add an impact player (big contract) for young assets and picks (small contracts) unless they get a salary dump in there too which only makes a trade harder to pull off. If Lombardi is working the phones I believe he’s looking to move defenseman Martinez as the Kings have a glutt of young skilled blueliners, but he won’t fetch much of an impact in return.

  8. $6.6 million is alot to make room for, but if teams have a need for a player like Stastny there are most likely players on every team that need a relocation and some new scenery. The Sabres can clear $6.6 million in a heartbeat by dumping off guys like Roy, Stafford, Ennis and Sekera. The rookies from Rochester have come in and brought a different mindset to the team. No, things haven’t turned around, but the kids are helping in their own ways.

  9. Perhaps the kings need to clean house. With all the talent and prospects in their system they should have been showing some better results by now. Lombardi has made some big mistakes and the coaching staff doesnt seem to be able to motivate these guys to the next level.
    Several teams are looking to add a d-man. Even teams that havent said so would add a quality d-man given the opportunity. Teams are going to have to pay a premium and if not willing just wont get their guy.
    I for one am glad the sabres are struggling. They were throwing money around like some big shots and figured it would translate into instant success and a cup. I however think it may be a mistake to trade Roy, Stafford,and Ennis especially for Stastny who isnt exactly tearing things up with Colorado. And why would they want to trade Stastny? Cant be just his huge salary, there must be something else wrong.
    If the bruins let Kelly walk it would be a big mistake. However if Kelly wouldnt mind changing teams for some reason he would be in big demand and would get one big pay raise come July 1.
    Would I trade for Hemsky? not unless it was at the trade deadline and he was a UFA the following summer and I didnt have to give up much. So, I guess the answer would be no unless he got some bionic shoulders implanted.

  10. Living on the West coast, I’ve happened to see quite a few Colorado games this year and have barely noticed Stastny. He doesn’t seem to really bring a whole lot to the table, so I doubt anyone would take that contract without an equally bad contract going back the other way. The Avs are honestly awful and I’m surprised Sacco hasn’t been replaced yet.

    I find it hard to believe the Wings would be interested in Hemsky. They are well-known as being injury prone up front as it is and have plenty of playmakers already – if they need anything it’s a forward that can score some goals. Tuomo Ruutu is an interesting idea.

    And I don’t think there’s any truth the Wings want a ‘physical’ defenseman. They already have 6 defensemen (Lidstrom, White, Stuart, Kronwall, Ericsson, Kindl) plus Smith and Commodore. The first 5 are going nowhere and Kindl has been too good to move out of the top 6, so where exactly would this ‘physical defenseman’ fit?

  11. Kaberle is quite capable of a good game and expect him to try and stick it to the Maple Leafs and Hurricanes next time Montreal plays them but by and large, this guy is washed up and indifferent to team success. Just ask Boston or Carolina about that.

  12. The Kings need to fire Terry Murray, Jon Stevens and Jaime (my power play strategy sucks) Kompon and bring in Wayne Gretzky to run the show.
    They also need to trade Doughty and Penner to the Ducks for Ryan and Fowler.
    They could also trade Bernier and bring in some extra cap space.
    Quick should start until he loses a game, Terry Murray had his head up his butt and doesn’t know how to handle his team or his goal keepers.
    Dustin Brown needs to have his Captaincy taken away and given to Anze Kopitar, he’s the real team leader now and Mike Richards should be made an Assistant Captain.
    It’s not to late for the Kings to salvage their season but they need to make these changes now!!!

  13. The Kings could also trade Doughty, Penner and Bernier for Brewer, Malone and Garon.
    This would give the Lightning a young defensemen, a young goalie and a veteran in front of the net presence for their powerplay (like Dave A.)
    The Kings would give themselves some much needed cap relief, get a good defensemen, a young forward and a veteran goalie to fill in for Quick when needed.
    I think this is a good fit for both teams.

  14. If you don’t like this Lightning trade you could substitute Hedman for Brewer and get an even younger defensemen.

  15. Jason… do you really think LA would part with both Doughty and Bernier for a bunch of bums? Honestly man the only way you acquire Doughty and/or Bernier is if you’re sending Stamkos the other way. And I don’t even think LA would do that trade either. Doughty alone probably fetches 3+ 1st round picks (if not more) and Bernier is probably going to demand two 1st round picks. You think you’d get 5+ first round picks for Malone, Brewer, and Garon? Not to mention the $$ Bernier and Doughty will demand. Tampa can’t absorb 10+ million dollars. Also, trading Bernier doesn’t give the Kings cap space (Berniers salary is 1.25M). And not only that but Brewer and Malone are bad contracts that amount to almost $9 million. Tampa would be happy to give those guys away for free probably and Garon is a dime a dozen back up goalie. What you’re suggesting is almost similar to suggesting the Penguins trade Crosby to get more cap space…

  16. T0 Json
    LMAO, Kings will never trade for Brewer, Malone and Garon.
    They all Suck and there old , The only trade I will pull of with tampa is Doughty Bernier & Penner for Stamkos & Malone thats all !

  17. As a Sens fan I would love Chris Kelly back in the lineup… but as someone pointed out — where would he fit in? The 3rd line centre position is just about locked up by Zack Smith … and he’s doing a good job. The 2nd line centre position will be between Regin & Zibanejad.

    I know Chris Kelly was just about Bryan Murray’s favourite player… it hurt him a lot to trade him.

    IF the Bruins have the cap space… they will re-sign Kelly.