The latest on Jaromir Jagr, Ryan Miller, Paul Stastny, Rene Bourque and more.
OTTAWA SUN: Bruce Garrioch reports whether Ryan Miller re-signs with the Blues depends upon their playoff performance and his salary demands. Garrioch suggests the Canucks and Ducks could be good options for Miller, who wants to play on the west coast…The Flames will continue their search for a new GM in the off-season. One candidate could be Capitals GM George McPhee, whose contract is up following this season…The Flyers haven’t talked contract with Steve Downie. He wants to re-sign but Garrioch claims there was talk he was shopped at the trade deadline…The Avalanche have put off contract talks with pending UFA center Paul Stastny until the off-season. There’s talk the Predators could pursue him if he tests this summer’s free agent market…The Flames didn’t trade Mike Cammalleri at the trade deadline because the best offer was a third-round draft pick.
SPECTOR’S NOTE: If Miller doesn’t re-sign with the Blues, forget about the Canucks and Ducks as options. Miller doesn’t want to play for Canadian teams (especially a rebuilding one) and I believe the Ducks will re-sign Hiller. If Miller’s smart, he’ll re-sign with the Blues, as they are his best chance to spend the next several years playing for a genuine Stanley Cup contender…Given McPhee’s recent record with the Capitals, is he really a good choice for the rebuilding Flames?…The Flyers will need what cap space they have to re-sign other key players. Downie could be odd man out…Stastny says he’ll willing to accept a hometown discount to re-sign with the Avs. How much of a discount remains to be seen…No wonder the Flames opted not to move Cammalleri at the deadline. A third-round pick is an insulting offer.
NJ.COM: Randy Miller recently reported Jaromir Jagr’s agent, Petr Svoboda, claims there’s a “really great chance” his client re-signs with the New Jersey Devils. It’s expected Jagr will seek a one-year deal and Svoboda says he’s not seeking to break the bank.
SPECTOR’S NOTE: I’ll be very surprised if Jagr doesn’t re-sign. He’s had a terrific season with the Devils, proving to critics (like me) that he still has enough left in the tank to be an effective scoring forward over the course of a long NHL season.
CBC.CA: Guillaume Lefrancois recently reported the Canadiens face a difficult decision regarding winger Rene Bourque, who’s earning an annual cap hit of over $3 million per season through 2015-16 but hasn’t performed to expectations. It’s possible Bourque could be bought out in June, but Lafrancois suggests it might be best to wait until next summer to do so. Buying him out this summer would cost over $1.66 million per season for the next two seasons, and over $833K per season over the final two years of the buyout term.
SPECTOR’S NOTE: As Lefrancois notes there are some factors (the salary cap for next season, the cost of re-signing P.K. Subban and Andrei Markov) which could affect a possible buyout of Bourque this summer. If the Habs wait until next summer, it’s one season at $1.66 and one season at $833K. That might be the better way to go.