The latest from Hockey Night in Canada, Ottawa Sun, Calgary Sun and New York Post.
CBC.CA: During last night’s “Hotstove” intermission segment on Hockey Night in Canada, Elliotte Friedman reports the floundering Columbus Blue Jackets have no plans to trade franchise player Rick Nash, nor has he asked for a trade or intends to…Oilers GM Steve Tambellini said if Linus Omark wants to return to the NHL, he must play well with their farm club. Omark made headlines earlier in the week by claiming he had a clause in his contract allowing him to return to Europe if he were demoted.
SPECTOR’S NOTE: Things are going from bad to worse with the Blue Jackets, and changes are coming sooner or later, but unless Nash asks to be moved, and there’s no indication – anywhere – that’s what he wants, he won’t be going anywhere…Omark’s name is now being kicked around as a possible trade candidate by the Oilers, but they’re in no rush to make any moves right now.
OTTAWA SUN: Bruce Garrioch reports a third of the league, notably the Canadiens, Rangers, Oilers, Canucks, Blues, Jets, Lightning, Blue Jackets and Islanders, are in the market for defensive help but so far the market is thin. Garrioch suggested perhaps they should contact the Nashville Predators to inquire into the availability of Ryan Suter, as the Preds will have difficulty trying to re-sign he and Shea Weber…The Senators, Flames and Canucks have interest in Phoenix holdout Kyle Turris, but it’s believed the latter two have more interest. Turris won’t be moved until he signs a new deal and reports to Phoenix. Rumor had the Flames offering Rene Bourque but apparently the Coyotes also wanted a first round pick in the deal…Islanders GM Garth Snow is rumored to be shopping winger Blake Comeau, and could be in the market for a second line center, as Frans Nielsen will be a UFA next summer and could try to cash in on his success…Garrioch also suggested maybe it is time for the Blue Jackets to consider trading Rick Nash.
SPECTOR’S NOTE: See Elliotte Friedman’s comments on Nash…The Predators won’t move Suter unless they’re out of the playoff picture by the trade deadline. Even then, that’s not a certainty, as they could opt to move Shea Weber instead. They could surprise and re-sign both, but that combined with Pekka Rinne’s new contract would tie up around $20 million of payroll in three players. That’s a lot of coin for a budget team…OK, I get the Senators and Flames interest in Turris, but the Canucks? They’re very deep at center. Where would they play him? …Comeau’s performance this season has really been disappointing. He’d been making improvement every season since his rookie season in 2007-08, but this season he looks lost. As for Nielsen bolting for the UFA market, why do Ontario-based pundits also assume the Isles will have trouble retaining their free agents? The same thing was said about Tavares, Moulson, Okposo and Grabner, and what happened? Oh, that’s right, they all re-signed for long term extensions. Don’t be so quick to assume the Isles won’t be able to re-sign Nielsen.
CALGARY SUN: Steve MacFarlane reports there’s a feeling around the Flames change could be coming soon if they don’t soon improve their performance. GM Jay Feaster said every option that’s available is open and would be explored to address the issue. A trade is one possibility, but so too could be promoting players from the minors. Feaster said he’s been talking with other GMs, but stressed the need not to rush too quickly into making changes. He also shot down the notion he’d give up players for draft picks.
SPECTOR’S NOTE: If there was a good deal available for Feaster in the trade market, he’d have pulled the trigger by now. That being said, things could improve by month’s end as more teams begin to look toward trades to addressing their problem areas. Kyle Turris’ contract holdout will reach its critical point on December first, so we can expect business could really start to pick up by that point. And we’re about six weeks away from the Christmas trade freeze.
NEW YORK POST: Larry Brooks reports Kyle Turris told Phoenix Coyotes GM Don Maloney he would sign if the club guaranteed to trade him in a deal brokered by the player. The Coyotes rejected that proposal.