Sunday NHL Rumor Roundup – June 22, 2014.

Latest on Brad Richards, Mike Richards.  Ryan Kesler, Keith Yandle, Ales Hemsky, Anton Stralman  and more.

Anton Stralman could cash in big this summer.

Anton Stralman could cash in big this summer.

TORONTO SUN: Steve Simmons reports the Kings aren’t buying out or trading Mike Richards but they aren’t happy with his performance. They’ve also offered Marian Gaborik a three-year, $15 million contract. Retaining both could mean parting with Willie Mitchell or Matt Greene…Simmons expects someone will pay Anton Stralman a lot of money via free agency and will be disappointed.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Several observers, notably The Score’s Justin Bourne, recently wondered about the decline this season in Richards’ performance.  The center has acknowledged he must change his off-season training. For his sake and the Kings, hopefully that improves his play. Stralman might indeed be overpaid this summer, but as analytics blogger Tyler Dellow notes, they might not be as disappointed as Simmons suggests. 

NEW YORK POST: Larry Brooks reports the savings the NY Rangers received from their compliance buyout of Brad Richards will go toward re-signing their key players, rather than adding new ones. He claims the Rangers have allotted $4 million to re-signing Anton Stralman, likely on a three- or f0ur-year term. They’re expected to let Justin Falk depart.

BOSTON GLOBE: Fluto Shinzawa believes Ales Hemsky could cash in big via free agency…He also speculates new Penguins GM Jim Rutherford could sign pending UFA center Manny Malholtra.

THE GLOBE & MAIL: James Mirtles lists this summer’s top free agent goaltenders. It’s a short list, led by Ryan Miller, Jonas Hiller, Martin Brodeur and Tim Thomas.

CSNCHICAGO.COM: Tracey Myers notes the Blackhawks are among Ryan Kesler’s preferred trade destinations, but cites his salary ($5 million per), injury history, asking price and the ‘Hawks intention to re-sign Jonathan Toews and Patrick Kane as reasons why he won’t land in Chicago.

SPECTORS NOTE: The ‘Hawks would have to shed at least $4 million to make this work, and even then it wouldn’t leave them much available space to work with heading into next season. 

NBC SPORTS: Brad Richards’ agent isn’t ruling out his client returning to the Tampa Bay Lightning as a UFA.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: The Lightning are deep at center with Steven Stamkos, Valtteri Filppula and Calder nominee Tyler Johnson. Richards isn’t a fit there.

DETROIT FREE PRESS: Helene St. James believes the Red Wings would have to pay a hefty price to land Phoenix Coyotes defenseman Keith Yandle.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: The Coyotes need scorers, so they’ll want at least one of the Red Wings promising young forwards as part of the return. 

NEWSDAY: Arthur Staple reports NY Islanders GM Garth Snow is willing to trade his first-round pick (fifth overall) for an NHL-ready player who can help the club now.

DENVER POST: Adrian Dater speculates over which pending UFAs the Colorado Avalanche could pursue this summer. The focus will likely be on defense. Targets could include Matt Niskanen, Brooks Orpik, Dan Boyle, Willie Mitchell and Matt Greene.

AZCENTRAL.COM: Sarah McLellan reports the soon-to-be Arizona Coyotes will have a higher budget to work with for next season. They could have about $4.6 million to address their offense.

NEWSOBSERVER.COM: Chip Alexander reports Carolina Hurricanes GM Ron Francis doesn’t anticipate making any sweeping changes to his roster this summer. It’s possible they could look at trading goalie Cam Ward.

STLTODAY.COM: Jeremy Rutherford reports Blues management had hoped to re-sign pending UFA Steve Ott but that’s not a guarantee. The club doesn’t intend to spend to the cap ceiling, and finding a No. 2 center via trade or free agency won’t be easy.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: If the Blues acquire either Jason Spezza or Ryan Kesler they’ll have to free up about $5 million in cap space if they intend to remain a non-cap ceiling club. 


  1. You know who is going to be even more disapointed than the team that overpays Stralman?

    The Avs, if they think Boyle Mitchell Green or Orpik makes their D that much better.

    • Highly unlikely the Avs would think they’d make that defense much better but in all honesty it does make that defense better. That’s all anyone is looking from those 4 names you’ve mentioned above.

  2. Lyle-do you think the flyers could land Yandle with Brayden Schenn and a draft pick?

    • They’ll have to move a salaried player to do it, or convince the Coyotes to pick up half his salary.

      • If the Coyotes trade Yandle they won’t retain salary. Yandle will net them a good return without retaining salary!

        • It’s very unlikely the Coyotes will trade Yandle until they are convinced that Gormley can play top 4 minutes. I do not think the Flyers have any interest in paying what it would cost to acquire Yandle.

    • The Yotes can find a trading partner for Yandle without having to take back salary. Detroit is a good option.

      • I certainly could see Perron and/or Yaks headed from the Oil for Yandle….Would be a good trade for both sides….

  3. I’m surprized the media haven’t written about Brad Richards to the Leafs. This way Toronto could have 4 expensive second/third line centers Kadri/Boz/Bolland/Richards once Kadri resigns next summer. In all seriousness if The Leafs could ever trade Bozak and Kadri could step up to #1 and Richards could be had for around $3.5M on a three year deal for the second line role maybe there is a fit. Before Shticky gets his panties in a bunch and starts quoting stats from last year about Bozak’s (shortened year) points vs Richards keep in mind Richards had an off year from his usual 25 goal 60 point totals and Bozak had a shooting percentage that is impossible to maintain therefore Boz will probably go back to his 17 goal 50 point pace in an 82 games. Richards could provide some much needed leadership and we could finally breakup the Kessel/Boz bromance. After reading that Boz is part of the untouchables along with Kessel but JVR is not untouchable I realized Boz is really running things at MLSE. lol

    • Shooting percentage:
      Bozak – 21.11% (unsustainable, due for a decrease in goals)
      Kadri – 13.51 (last year almost 17% then fell back to more reasonable 13.5)
      Richards – 7.72 (he’s usually around 10%)

      Kessel – 12.13 (usually around 12.5%)
      JVR – 10.75 % (usually around 12%)
      Bottom line is Kadri will never be given the number one role in Kessel’s mind if Bozak is on the team.

      • at this point in there careers, Id rather have bozak. Richards will command a lot more then 3.5 to come play in Toronto, and even if he does he might have what 1 maybe 2 good years in him?? Bozak plays harder to me then B. Richards does, and is younger and on a good contract for years to come. and that line of jvr-bozak-kessel were in top 5 lines of nhl last year for points, so why break up chemistry just because the name on the back of a sweater??

        that being said would pho have any intereest in lupul for a trade for yandle?? salaries are close and gives pho a scoring winger which they could use. might half to add a prospect from Toronto but seems like a deal could possibly be made???

        • Maybe Lupul and Gardiner for Yandle works, but Yandle is a puck moving d-man and the Leafs need a shutdown d-man who is able to play 20+ mins.
          IMO they should try to get rid of Gleason. Maybe the Isles take him for a bag of pucks :-)

        • If you are keeping Bozak on the number one line then you might as well trade Kadri because you will stunt any further growth and you might as well stop looking for a number one center because Bozak will NEVER be on the Leafs playing on a line without Kessel it just won’t happen ever…

        • I doubt Yotes want any part of Lupul. Seems like he always misses at least 20+ games a year due to injury.Honestly IMO I doubt many if any teams have interest in Lupul. Maybe Kadri instead but probably have to add something else to that package as well.

      • No worries its an easy response….no mention of the Leafs in this article here, but since you tie everything only to the Leafs. Richards does not fit for so many reasons there is no point. Which is probably why its not mentioned very much by anyone who has half a clue.

      • Just one more thing….your fancy stats there you point out 2 guys who have lower sh% than avg but their yoals actually increased then you point out a guy with high shooting percentage and say if it drops so will his goals…again how much do you think Bozak actually has to shoot the puck playing with Kessel and JVR? Does it not stand to reason that his %is so high due to lack of attempts? What happens if you shoot more? Would it not be logical that with more attempts comes more opportunities for goals? Not saying Bozak is my first choice for a no.1 center but besides Kadri he is the only decent center on the team.

        • You either keep Bozak and finally come to terms he is your number one center or you trade him because as I said earlier the bromance will never withstand Bozak on another line other then Kessels. Shticky you will realize this in a year or two. I know it takes you years longer then most people to realize Leaf managements short comings. I expect you to be asking for a Bozak trade in a year or two when you realize Toronto will never have a number one center as long as Boz is on the team.

    • The Leafs have a lot of speed in their forwards. Richards has slowed down.

      He’s not the player he was.

  4. What are the chances the Islanders make a play for Yandle,the #5 pick and a player like Grabner,etc?

    • I am totally baffled with Snow and really wonder if he knows what he’s doing. For one, IMO LI will never have a top contender until the Islanders get a new owner. So hopefully the rumor that everything for a sale is in place except the signatures and Wang will give it up.
      Secondly Snow has got to be ther worst GM out there. Does he have a clue of how to draft, make trades and sign UFA? He was taken on the Vanek deal – not just once, but twice. Broke up the chemistry of Tavaris and Moulson, Brought the rights to negotiate with Erhoff and now Boyle only to try to get something in return at the last minute. Both actions were failures. IMO, I think a big mistake was keeping the 2014 #5 pick and giving up the 2015 1st round pick – in a draft that is expected to be deeper. I guess in looking at the majority of moves Snow makes, I just shake my head.

    • I doubt it. Snow has to be more cautious now that the Boyle trade bit him in the ass. He’s got to impress the supposed new owners…

      • Tho it was a bit of a brain cramp and funny its along way from bit him in the ass, it was a 5th round pick. Doug MacLean was on hockey central saying when he was the GM in Columbus at the draft there were deals involving 5th 6th and 7th round picks changing hands for basically rounds of golf. Just to get it over with. Those are picks that are basically given away in parts of bigger deals.

  5. Any Penguin fans think we should look at Brad Richards??? What about moving Suter for a Pick or Prospect and trying to sign Richards to be our 3rd line centre…

    • Sutter was a bright spot for the Pens this playoffs. He is the type of player they need more.

    • Yesterday I wrote about that possibility that the Pens may sign Richards, but now I’m not sure if it would make sense. I’d rather sign Sutter (would be cheaper) and try to sign or trade for better players to play with him on the third line.
      I would try to resign Jokinen, Depres, Engelland (7th d) and Goc (I think he could be had for a reasonable price and it never hurts to have guys who are good in the face-off circle and can play a little bit). Try to trade Adams and Scuderi, let Orpik and Niskanen walk via FA.
      Sign a shutdown d-man like Fayne or Greene and get guys for the 3rd / 4th ( Santorelli, McCormick, Malhotra, Pouliot…)

      Jokinen – Malkin – Neal
      Kunitz – Crosby – Bennet
      Dupuis – Sutter – Santorelli / B. Pouliot
      Malhotra – Goc – McCormick / Glass

      Letang – Fayne
      Martin – Maata
      Depres – Bortuzzo
      Engelland, Doumoulin, Pouliot

      • I agree with what alot are saying, Pitsburgh, needs some more grind or size in its top 2 lines, I think if a guy like Marchand is avilable or Stewart they could be worth a look.They need a guy or 2 to do the dirty work to keep Malkin and Crosby from having to do everything, let them focus on being the type of players they are supposed to be.
        Big part of their last cup were guys like Talbot and Guerin and Craig Adams, not exactly soft or skilled guys.

    • Sutter is a lot better than Richards

  6. The perfect landing spot for Richards is Chicago. They desperately need a 2nd line center. They can fill that spot without moving any assets, which would be required to land Kesler. It also buys Terraivenen some time to mature and fill into that 2nd line role.

    • this is what I could picture as well. Fits a perfect need for chicago, and Richards has an excellent chance at a cup for what ever years he signs there. that being said Chicago would half to move some salary out.

  7. The pens don’t need another center – Sutter is perfect for the 3rd line role and on most other teams he would probably be their 2nd line center. What the pens need are effective wingers. Scoring and gritty wins to complement Malkin and Crosby.

  8. At this point in Richards’ career, he is looking to win another cup and money won’t factor in his decision. He’s made a ton! If a contending, cap strapped team like Chicago wants to sign him….it would be for around the 3 million.

    • Money is always an issue with the older guys that have won cups. They always want that final big payday. Florida Panthers I believe will make a good pitch for him as the owner has given the green light to Tallon to spend spend spend.

      • That was the pay day Richards received when he signed with the rangers in 2011…he’s set! :)

      • Money is not an issue when you’ve been bought out and you’re laughing to the bank. Richards will net about $3M from a team.

        • After seeing Philly and the Vinny situation, Id be surprised if he gets more than 3-3.5 for 3 years.

          • Vinny makes Richards look like a Selke winner…

  9. With Garth Snow looking to “trade his first-round pick (fifth overall) for an NHL-ready player who can help the club now” — and the article even saying that the “main focus is using that fifth pick to find either a top-pair defenseman or a top-line left wing to play alongside John Tavares and Kyle Okposo” — Nonis should be on the line with Snow right now pitching Joffrey Lupul for the 5th overall… Gives NYI a dynamic winger to play on Tavares’ left flank, NYI have plenty of cap space and need to get better next year (esp. to avoid giving Buffalo a really high pick in the deep 2015 first round from the Vanek trade). Gives Toronto cap relief (to go after Stastny if he hits UFA, or bring in help on D), and gives them #5 & #8 to get 2x top-end prospects who can step into their top-6 group in a year or 2. Is this a crazy idea?

    • Lupul for the 5? Great for Toronto I think the Islander would want more tho. Honestly could see Lupul by himself going for far less, Lupul the rights to Franson and the 8 is I think more along the lines at the very least.

      • @Shticky what are the rights to a awful defenseman worth?
        I’m guessing the isles want a defenseman who can actually, you know…play defense.:

        • Have you seen Boyle play the past few years? Garth traded for him no? They plsy pretty much the exact same game with the exception Franson hits people….alot.

          • @Shticky Boyle has played top 4 mins and won a cup. Franson plays 3rd pairing mins against weaker competition. Yeah, exact same game(sarcasm)

          • Shticky you honestly can’t be comparing Franson to Boyle. Boyle what 37 years old right now and honestly he’d probably be better then Franson at 40.

          • Im comparing Fransons past couple seasons to Boyles past couple of seasons yes, Boyle is 37 years old slower and probably not going to be having 50 point seasons any more. Iam not comparing careers. One guy is 37 almost ready to retire the other is 26 has more points over the past 2 years than Boyle and has only been in the league for parts of 5 years.

          • Bottom pairing or 5 and 6 in Toronto was Ranger/Gleason and Rielly. Franson played with Gardiner in the second pair and generally the pp with Phaneuf he avg over 20 mins a game not bottom pairing minutes.

          • Yup comparing the two guys overall careers like you said isn’t what you are doing. But simple fact right now as it stands Boyle’s better then Franson hands down. I’d take Gardiner, Rielly Phaneuf (Without the contract) over Boyle.

            I doubt Franson ever gets a 50 point season. He had a lucky campaign last season with the short lockout year IMO. He will definitely be a regular 20-30 point guy though.

      • Wow AK47 that is so far off… You honestly think you could get the 5th overall with Lupul? Lol… Unless Snow is the most retarded GM in the history of sports he would laugh at Nonis. Lupul has never played a full season in the NHL. Lupul hasn’t played at least 80 games in a single season since he was on the Oilers. He’s only once reached the 60+ point plateau. I can’t see Snow being that slow to accept that.

        Replace Lupul with Kadri, 8th overall and the rights to Franson and I think you’d get a conversation going.
        Just because he wants a

        • Sorry forgot to finish my paragraph.

          Just because he wants to trade the 5th overall doesn’t mean he’ll trade it for a guy like Lupul. He needs a body that can play on a game to game basis not missing games every year for injuries.

        • LMAO! Kadri Franson and the 8 for the 5…its a weak draft and to move up 3 spots you thinka 2 c Kadri that nearly has 100 points in a season and a half Franson has over 60 and the 8th pick to move up to 5? Besides the joke of it froma Leaf stand point why dothe Islanders want a center? To use your favorite term Jeswhatare you smoking?

    • Again, why not trade Erhoff or Myers and #39 to LI for #5. Would give the Islanders the Vet D-man they are looking for plus a high 2nd rounder.

      • Imo thats an overpayment for Buffalo.

      • @Steve Snow is looking for young talent back. Isles won’t give up 5th overall for Erhoff who is weeks away from his 32nd birthday.

      • Agree with Shticky total over payment. And yes Myers isn’t going anywhere

        • Jes, I hope you don’t get disappointed.

          • Disappointed? Why would I be disappointed? Seems like you THINK you know this trade is going down which is laughable. Myers isn’t going anywhere so I hope you are not disappointed. :)

    • I think the Islanders need to stop worrying about a winger that fits Tavares…..Tavares has been, and will be fine with whoever he plays with on his sides. This is the mentality that has gotten Snow in deep poo…..They got their goal tender, now they need to build from the back end forward. Build everything around Tavares, and stop worrying about 1 line. The Islanders have plenty of young talent, but I doubt they trade the #5 for often injured Lupul.

  10. @AK47 in what world is Lupul with his injuries and $5m salary worth a top 5 pick? Leaf fans…lol

    • Dont forget its not a great draft, but I agree it would need more.

      • @Shticky it’s not a deep draft. But scouts are saying the talent in the top five has star potential. Not franchise potential, but star potential. Isles are not moving their first for another teams scrap. The players the other team wants to dump.

        • Its 3 spots difference in a weak draft, depending on what Snow has for priorites I could see a deal similar to what I mentioned involving, even with injuries Lupul is a 20 goal per year guy Franson is a big righthaned shot who is younger than Boyle but plays a very similar type game to Dan Boyle who has more points than Boyle over the past few seasons and has led the league in hits the past 2 years along with the 8 pick, so moving 3 spots back with 3 pieces that fit what could be needs.

          • @Shticky as I said.. the isles want a defenseman who can actually play defense.

          • Why did they trade for the rights to Boyle?

          • @Shticky Your deal makes sense. But @AK47 wasn’t suggesting Lupul and #8 for #5. He was suggesting Lupul straight up for #5.

      • @ Shticky….It’s a great top 5 the rest of the draft is iffy. So for NYI to give up one of the 5 best players in the draft for Lupul is pretty damn hilarious. I honestly do not even think Snow can be that stupid. Lupul, Franson and the 8th overall wouldn’t even get it done.

        • Not arguing with ya Jes.

    • are not comparing Boyle who’s played top 4 mins at a high level and won a Stanley Cup with Franson?
      Boyle who could have mentored all the isles young blueliners, with Franson who is a disaster in his own end?

      • I am not so sure that its a great idea to pay millions of dollars for a mentor, I think some of the thinking was more along the lines he is a big body right handed shot helps the power play and moves the puck well. God here we go with the he won a cup arguement…lol

        • @Shticky have you seen the number of really promising young, inexperienced defenseman the isles have? De Haan, Hickey, Harmonic, Donovan, Pulock, Pokka, Mayfield, Pedan, Pelech ,Czuzcman.
          Paying Boyle to be pair with Vis or Reinhart, while acting as mentor would have been money well spent.

          • Orpik Greene Mitchell Whitney…etc all d men that have won cups some that are definitely better in their own end than Boyle that could be money well spent to “mentor” young D, plenty available who can play on the Island, but he traded for a big righthaned shot, why you think that is? Probably because it fills a need. I am not saying for sure this trade works just saying that it “COULD” work for both teams.

          • It works for the Leafs but not for the Isles. I think they’d rather take Dal Colle or Draisaitl and I would rather to. It’s basically dealing the 8th overall for the 5th overall if you think about it. Most of the defensemen the Isles have although are younger but IMO are better then Franson. Lupul is a guy that you could see miss 60 games. They’ll never get a full season out him as the Leafs and Flyers know all to well.

            The Isles will be better off making a couple of big pitches for good defensemen in the free agent pool like Niskanen (Who seems money driven) and maybe Fayne.

            Byfuglien, Bogosian, Ehrhoff, Campbell, Giordano?, Seabrook? Phaneuf and Yandle could all be had by trade so why go after a bottom 2 like Franson with the 5th overall pick?

          • Because no one is trading “Byfuglien, Bogosian, Ehrhoff, Campbell, Giordano?, Seabrook? Phaneuf and Yandle” for a draft pick in a weak draft? Too many people over valuing draft picks, now that they know some names. How many of the Isles farm team games you watch Jes to come up with Most of the defensemen the Isles have although are younger but IMO are better ? Ypu talk out your ass and have nothing to compare too so you just assume because its a Leaf it must bet true, same as the draft you have never seen any of them play yet you assume that becsuse some one said something about a weak draft it must mean that the top 5 is still all fantastic but at 6,7,8 they will be lucky to make it to the NHL, its not thst way at all its 3 spots in a draft that overall isnot as strong as some other years, not comparing player to player but other years of drafts.

          • Shticky read up on the draft bud. Top 5 are considered to be elite compared to the rest of the draft class. You got to study the draft before you star criticizing it. Had you done your homework you’d know this.

  11. Frans Nielsen is coming off a very strong offensive season. A career high 58 pts on the isles 2nd line. He makes less then $3m. Is there a deal to be made between the Blues, who need a top 6 center and the isles, who need a top 4 defenseman?

    • Now who is over valuing?

      • @Shticky Frans Nielsen is one of the better two way players in the NHL. Very responsible defensively and his 58 pts show if put on a line with skilled players, he can put up pts. It’s not like Josh Bailey is some big time scorer that Nielsen leetched off of.
        A major benefit to adding Nielsen is his contract at $2.75m. Almost half the salary of kessel, who had 43 pts

        • Kessel had 43 assits 37 goals and, 80 points actually, his 5th 30 goal season at 26 years old not sure why you are comparing the 2 but…

          NIELSON is not worth Pietroangelo Boumeester Shattenkirk or Jackman maybe Polak…maybe. lol

          • Lol Shticky Nielsen NOT worth Jackman? Wow underrating a pretty good player there. I bet if he was on the Leafs he’d be able to get you Pieterangelo straight up.

          • Nielson is 30 years old Jes not exactly young and its his first season over 50 points and career wise is a minus player no I would not trade Jackman for him. Jack man is a very solid no. 4

          • Why trade a top 4 D for a guy who is 30 years old career minus plsyer who has been in the league 10 years and has maybe 3 seasons of over 40 points? Jackman is a pretty solid no 4 if the Blues were to move him they would get a better player than Nielson, the funniest thing is you sit their and slam a guy like Kadri who is 7 years younger than Neilson and has half of Nielsons point in 2 years in the league when Neilson has been in the league for almost 8 seasons.

      • Shticy, ne never said for what D-Man in St.Louis

        • he*

          • Read the post before you look rediculious… “Is there a deal to be made between the Blues, who need a top 6 center and the isles, who need a top 4 defenseman?”

          • @Jason W yes he.

            And I don’t know enough about the Blues, to say which d-man would be one the Blues might move. He’d just need to be an experienced defenseman. One capable of playing on the second pairing with Vis or Reinhart.

        • Jason you don’t have to say for what defense when you say top 4. Unless your thinking Leopold is a top 4 and Jackman isn’t?

  12. It’s almost comical watching Snow running around like a chicken with its head cut off trying desperately to improve his team in one year to avoid the humiliation of giving up a high pick in next year’s draft.

    Why this guy still has a job, I don’t know.

    • Probably best friends with Wang. Has to be.

      • He loves the Wang.

    • Just seen this rumor on hockeybuzz….

      James Reimer, Kadri and a pick for Ryan Kesler and a prospect…

      • Yeah, I laughed when eklund said that too.

        • Hilarious guy he is. Did you see the one from a couple of days ago that St. Louis is one of the favorites to land Miller? Even though St. Louis has already stated they are going with Allen and Elliott next season and will not be resigning Miller. He also said there’s a chance Tampa trades Bishop and brings in Miller. Lol it’s rather amusing to keep going back to the site and to see how many people actually pay for Eklund’s little chart or whatever it’s called.

  13. Richards has played a good amount of wing in NY the last couple years, I could see him being a good fit in Tampa on the wing, and he can always flip over to C to try different line combos or in case of injury, etc.

  14. (Just daydreaming) How about Garth Snow trades the #5 pick for Phanuef???? Could happen…I mean Snow has made worse deals…

    • Actually that’s not a bad deal. Would Toronto hold back any salary? #5 is the only pick in the top 5 I see Phaneuf being able to land.

    • @Leafsmedic yes like that Tavares to Toronto trade..oh wait. My bad.

  15. I see EVERYONE BEING SIGNED BACK to NYR besides Boyle. Sather will either trade for Grabo or make a surprising move for a center not in headlines. Stralman will get his (security) financially.