Sunday NHL Rumor Roundup (Part Two) – March 2, 2014

Check out the latest on Ryan Kesler, Martin Brodeur, Ales Hemsky, Thomas Vanek, Matt Moulson and more.

Penguins reportedly targeting Ryan Kesler.

Penguins reportedly targeting Ryan Kesler.

CBC.CA: Glenn Healy claims Canucks center Ryan Kesler told “anybody and everybody” while he was in Sochi he wanted out of Vancouver. Elliotte Friedman claims the Pittsburgh Penguins are interested. Despite rumors to the contrary, Chicago Blackhawks GM Stan Bowman claims he’s not pursuing Kesler…Healy claims the Canucks want a big return for defenseman Alexander Edler. He and Friedman debated if the trade market for Roberto Luongo has softened…Healy believes Ryan Callahan will re-sign with the Rangers.

OTTAWA SUN: Bruce Garrioch reports the Blackhawks, Penguins and Red Wings could have interest in Ryan Kesler…The Oilers will try to move Ales Hemsky. Garrioch claims they also make a pitch for the Canadiens’ Andrei Markov…The Panthers are talking contract extension with Tom Gilbert…The Wild could target New Jersey’s Martin Brodeur and Florida’s Tim Thomas…The Stars could move Ray Whitney to the Coyotes if they can get a decent return. They could also shop Erik Cole, Vernon Fiddler and Stephane Robidas…The Islanders are trying to move Thomas Vanek and Andrew MacDonald. The asking price for Vanek is currently a first and second round pick plus a prospect…Teams are calling about Dan Boyle but the Sharks hope to re-sign him…The Predators “will likely deal David Legwand” and could shop Matt Cullen…The Sabres could try to sign Ryan Callahan if he becomes a UFA this summer…Keep an eye on Flames forward T.J. Galiardi…There’s interest in Hurricanes’ defenseman Ron Hainsey…The Kings could have interest in the Flames’ Mike Cammalleri if they fail to land Thomas Vanek…Garrioch lists the Sabres, Oilers, Islanders, Predators and Flames as the top five sellers, with the Blues, Canucks, Kings, Rangers and Red Wings as the top buyers. Vanek, Kesler, Moulson, Cammalleri and Callahan as the top five trade targets.

BOSTON GLOBE: Fluto Shinzawa believes Matt Moulson would be the perfect replacement for injured Penguins winger Pascal Dupuis…He doubts the Lightning trade captain Martin St. Louis…The Hurricanes carry three goalies (Cam Ward, Anton Khudobin and Justin Peters) and would like to move one of them.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Not much to add to most of this as it’s already been previously covered leading up to today. I will add that the Canadiens won’t trade Markov as they’ll still try to re-sign him. I also doubt the Blackhawks pursue Kesler. Not that they wouldn’t like to have him but I don’t believe they can afford to acquire him now.

VANCOUVER PROVINCE: Ed Willes reports the Canucks asking price for Ryan Kesler is believed to be “the proverbial roster player, prospect, first-round draft pick package” they had set last season for Roberto Luongo. He suggests the Penguins as the best fit, bolstering their depth at center.

PITTSBURGH TRIBUNE-REVIEW: Rob Rossi reports multiple sources claim Penguins GM Ray Shero is pursuing a Kesler trade. “A proposed deal would send Kesler to the Penguins in exchange for center Brandon Sutter, two 2014 draft picks — likely a first- and third-round — and the Canucks’ choice of defensemen Simon Despres or Brian Dumoulin, the sources said.” Kesler has a no-trade clause but Rossi claims the Penguins are atop his list of preferred destinations. He noted the Penguins can afford Kesler’s $5 million per season salary because Pascal Dupuis and Kris Letang will be placed on LTIR.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Things could get very interesting with Kesler over the next three days. I initially doubted he could be moved by deadline day, but if Rossi’s sources are correct the Penguins’ pursuit could make such a trade possible. It might also open up a bidding war leading up to deadline day. As Bob McKenzie pointed out, if Kesler isn’t dealt by then the Canucks can revisit that option during the June draft.

STARTRIBUNE.COM: Michael Russo reports the Sabres are trying to flip recent-acquired goalie Jaroslav Halak to the Wild. The Wild have also inquired about the Devils’ Martin Brodeur and the Hurricanes’ Cam Ward. Russo claims the Oilers offered up Ilya Bryzgalov. Anton Khudobin and Tim Thomas could also be available. For the right price, Russo believes Wild GM Chuck Fletcher could pull the trigger on a deal.

NORTHJERSEY.COM: Tom Gulitti reports the Wild have contacted the Devils about Martin Brodeur.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Fletcher is reluctant to part with his young players and draft picks. Still, as Russo suggests, for the right price he could pick up a veteran rental goalie. While Brodeur would be a good addition he wouldn’t be coming in as a backup, meaning rookie Darcy Kuemper, who’s played so well since his call-up in January, would be relegated to backup duty.


  1. The Pens trying to add another top two line center like Kesler makes no sense. Geno, Sid+Kesler need top minutes to be at their best… The Flyers will overpay for Kesler.

    Who are the Rangers going to replace Callahan with if he is traded? Ott is now on the Blues..
    Garth Snow….as much as many teams want Vanek no one will fold for two high picks.

    • I really think the Rangers will use Callahan as their own rental. I cannot see a team giving up too much for him considering his ridiculous demands. The Rangers can replace Callahans leadership from within. Girardi, Nash, Staal, Mcdonagh etc. His numbers would be missed, especially with Zuccarello down. And they do not have anything in the pipeline that could step up and replace his minutes and numbers. So again, I think they either keep him as a rental of their own.

      • I kind of thought after Buffalo acquiring Stewart maybe a Callahan for Stewart trade? I think NYR coveted him out of St Louis. It will be hard to replace Cally’s leadership and 110 percent effort, but not his numbers….Marginal at best, third line numbers on most decent teams…

        • I agree his numbers won’t be hard to replace……but not from anything they have as far as prospects go. Most of NY’s prospects are nothing more than 3rd and 4th liners in the nhl.

    • @ds teams may well offer up two high picks given what St Louis gave up for Miller and Ott. In a market where goalies were not fetching much they got a decent player, solid goalie, a prospect and potentially two firsts. That trade also may well push teams to up the ante to match the Blues who look awfully good right now.

    • Agree about kesler. Any time in the league is better with kesler but why give up a big package like that to have him play on your third line. Makes no sense for the pens.

  2. Why is everyone saying Kesler won’t get enough ice time, many times he plays wing with the twins, many times Jordan Staal had more minutes then both Sid & Malkin..Don’t care if the Penguins get him either way but the argument of ice time is flawed.

    • 3 big horses who ‘prefer’ the same position. Just does not seem like the best fit. Pens need fill ins for Letang+Martin to compete with the Bruins. Pascal lose is big one too.

    • Kesler is more a Jordan Staal now than a Ryan Kesler in his prime. This would be a perfect role for him but I don’t see it happening until the summer.

      • Ouch. The sentences make no sense! What on earth are you guys trying to say? Maybe you’re like me and english isn’t my first language but come on!

  3. Ok so the Pens have the room with guys being on ltir, but what happens next year when/if Dupuis and Letang come back? Not to mention isnt nearly 25 mill in 3 centers a little expensive? lol it would leave them at over 60 million on the cap with 15 guys (only 8 forwards) signed so 10 mill to fill 6-7 guys.

    • Cap goes up. To worry about the off season is stupid right now.

  4. Orpik, Vokoun will be gone at the end of the season, there is 6m. You subtract Sutter’s 2m and the caps going up another 6m. Also they still have both of there compliance buyouts available Dupuis 35 coming of major knee surgery and say letang never plays again they get his $ back LTIR..who knows how these GMs do it but what we know is if they want a certain player they can move mountains.. Look a Minny everyone says Vanek is going there how that going to work, ok heatley leaves, vanek takes his cap hit what about there goaltending..You have to think Minny would like to do better than just making the playoffs agian as the 8th seed. Every team has cap issues at least the good ones…

    • Thats all according to capgeek so Orpik and Vokoun are accounted for… Im not saying they couldnt make it work just that to have over a third of your cap spent on 3 players (one of them a 3rd line center) who all play the same position on different lines, seems expensive, They would need at least 4 more forwards a goalie and a couple dmen to add with 10 mill. If the Pens pick up Kessler they will need to move some more bodies over the summer and not cheap contracts but vets that play bigger roles considering that Burtuzzo Bennet Matta are young guys already on the roster if you fill those last 8 spots with more from the farm depth will be a big issue going forward if the dont move some one like Martin to get some room.

      • Well put Schticky.
        The Pens could make Kesler’s contract fit easier if they sweeten the deal and get Vancouver to retain some of the salary for next season. Then the rumored offer makes a bit more sense with Sutter, a first, the additional 3rd round pick, and choice of defenseman prospects (as opposed to a just Sutter, a first, and a defined prospect). This makes filling out the roster slightly less problematic, as long they can get Niskanen and/or Jokinen on bridge deals until the cap goes up yet again.

      • Shticky, if your team was to pay big bucks on a position, wouldn’t you hope they spend it where it matters most? Wouldn’t you then agree that defense (including goal) and strength up the middle aka the centerman’s position is what you need if you would ever hope to raise Lord Stanley’s cup?

        • Thats kinda what I mean, just how did you list it? Defense including goal then up the middle. If you spend 25 mill up the middle almost a third of the cap they are going to probably be forced to take away from one of those other areas. Most likely a guy like Martin or a skimp on a goalie to back up Fleury who Im not sure anyone is sold on. So 25 mill up the middle 7.5 on Letang dosent leave much in the way of addressing much else. Its a team game 32.5 mill on 4 out of 21-23 guys? Im not sure thats a a great idea

  5. from My limited Pittsburgh watching it always seemed Malkin was a more dominant force when Side was out.
    Is there ever talk of Malkin going away for a kings ransom?

    • Crosby and Malkin will be pens til retirement. Other fans can just dream.

    • I’ve seen rare speculation about moving Malkin over the years, mostly of the “he’d be great on my team for these overvalued prospects” variety. Yes, Malkin could get a huge return if traded. However, the Sid-Geno combo puts Pittsburgh into the top teams in the league. I don’t see the Pens willing to change that.

  6. I don’t think a career 3rd line centre who weighs 180# (Sutter), a first round pick which could be as late as #25-30 and a D prospect will get Kesler. Canucks need a young 2nd line centre in return. Kesler would be the 1st line centre on most teams – just not Pittsburgh.

    • Honestly Sutter and a first round pick or a top d prospect should be enough. Sutter can easily be asecond line center on any team and he is young

      • The Canucks are not trading Kessler for just Sutter and a pick OR a prospect, it wil be more than that or why do it? You dont think they will get a better offer than that?
        Sutter has been in the League a while now nearly 6 seasons and 400 games still does not have 150 points Im not sure how this qualifies as a young center who will grow in to a good second line center. The Pens would be looking at Sutter a first and Despres, and I think the Canucks could hold out for better if they wait till the summer.

        • Well Shtick thankfully you’re not the Pens GM… First off getting Kesler makes perfect sense for the Pens especially with how mediocre their PK has been the last 5 games. Yes I know they’re #2 in the league, but their PK has slipped some. Evidently they would like to acquire him this year so he can be the RW for 87 and add to their PK. Then in the off-season look for a RW for 87 and move Dupuis to the 3rd line. The eventual plan for Dupuis is for him to be moved to the 3rd line in the final 2 years of his 4 year deal anyway. That’s Pgh biggest problem right now and it’s the fact that every team is focusing on their top 2 lines. Having a 3rd line that can play D and score is more beneficial to any team. Another reason why Kesler makes sense on 87 wing is bc Dupuis was the one who actually played defense on that line. Whomever they get for 87 RW is going to have to be responsible defensively bc Kunitz is horrendous and 87 is so-so. Having 3 centers who make a combined $23.5 million is fine with the cap moving to $70-71 million. Plus you can subtract Vokoun $2 mil salary, Orpik $3.75 mil, Kobasew 550k, Conner 550k, Engelland 566k, Jokinen $1 mil ( Car pays $1.1 mil of his salary), Niskanen $2.3 mil, Glass $1.1 mil, Despres 840k, Vitale 550k, and Sutter $2 mil.. Now assuming the Pens get Kesler they would have 15 players under contract for 2014-15 with a cap hit of roughly $ 60 mil – including Letang’s $7.2 mil salary-, leaving $10-11 mil to sign 7 players. Plus you would figure Vitale, Engelland ( in a 4th line role) would both be back and only making around $1.5 combined. So now they have 5 players left with $8.5 left. With Orpik leaving you have Dumoulin in his spot at 831k. Now they have $7 mil left and 4 players to sign. If they bring in say a Pouliot or a Harrington both of those players only make 900k and 600k. So now they have $6mil with 3 players left to sign. There is plenty of room to afford a 3rd line center who is needed to play defense and score.. Now if the Pens were smart they would get rid of Martin’s $5 mil salary since he’s becoming useless and brittle all of a sudden. That frees up even more cash and if they can keep $7.2 on LTIR that’s even more money. I think they can also buyout Letang, but that will never happen. Jason Botterill is a cap genius and everyday he’s moving salaries around between the AHL and NHL clubs. For some reason I think the people who run the front office of NHL clubs than either of us. They usually are 1 or 2 years ahead of the upcoming season as far as salaries go. If they couldn’t afford him they wouldn’t be trying to pursue it. Plus Rob Rossi is a known clown in this town so who knows if that’s true or not.

    • @Gored gotta agree with you. Sutter certainly would not blow my skirt up if I were a GM. He has been a bottom six and is unlikely to be any better than that. The prospects named may have potential but it seems Dupres has had a hard time cracking the line up and Domoulin is a ways off. A very late first rounder in a weak draft suggests you would eventually net a bottom six forward or bottom pair d man if you were lucky.

      Canucks need to get impact back for their best trade chip and I do not see it with this proposed package.

      • There is a lot of good valid points here with that said kesler is fading has been for two seasons mostly due to injuries. If he came to Pitt he would be great on third line always weak match ups unlike what he sees now; ask Jordan staal hes an average player nowadays with car. As far as sutter hes solid and never gets played with better wings so he does have room to improve despres is good but Pitts d has been deep all year if not for matta he would have made team outta camp. I think van would make out just fine

  7. @pensarmy,
    I have to agree with you. I see IF Kesler is traded to Pitt, he could play wing on Crosbys line. He would then play the middle later in games, thus increasing his ice time. Kesler, would be a good fit for Pitt, as he brings all 4 tools to the Pens.
    Keeping Callahan, maybe what the NYR want to do, at the deadline, but if they do, they significantly lose market value for him, if they cannot re-sign him. There could be a bit of a bidding war now, but if he goes unsigned, they will likely lose him to UFA for nothing, or a lower pick,player or prospect at draft day.

    • @Troy letting him walk for nothing may be their only option. I can’t see many teams giving them anything that helps them today given his $6.5 – 7 year demand. With them being very much in the hunt, keeping Callahan as their own rental makes the most sense really. They can either take a bad return now, or little to no return come draft day. It would be similar to them trading for Clowe (not a comparison of players) last year and not retaining him and losing out on the picks they gave up to get him. Only they don’t have to give anything to retain Callahan. The Rangers do not have anything internal that could help them today. Nor will they receive anything in a trade that helps today (imo). Callahans minutes and production would have to be replaced somehow immediately if they want to make a run. If they didn’t pull the trigger on Stewart, I don’t think they pull the trigger at all.

  8. If Sather doesn’t re-sign him, I won’t be the least bit surprised, if some other GM overpays for Callahan during FA, giving him the money he’s looking for. As we all know, for some reason, GM’s always overpay during free agency. It’s like a drug for them, and they need their fix!

  9. Doesn’t Kessler have a hand injury? Isn’t he prone to injuries? At this point I think he would be a costly acquisition. Same with Vanak. While on paper last year picking up Iginla and Morrow looked like really good moves, I just didn’t see the chemistry. What Pitt needs is a d-man and someone to complement Sid – players that won’t cost an arm and a leg – Moulson is a perfect fit to replace Dupuis and someone Sid can feed the puck to. McBain – doesn’t cost an arm and a leg, but he is physical and does play an offensive d game.

    • Bang on. This would give up way too much for someone when they could find much more affordable replacements that will probably be as effective. Besides if it was the physical side they want then why didn’t they push for Ott? As a fan I don’t want to see Kesler donning a sweater at that price.

  10. I think Vancouver is giving the fans and players the courtesy of the outdoor game and then making the moves. Could you imagine moving out Kesler and elder before the game. They are having a hard enough time selling tickets

  11. Why is everyone stuck with Pitt ? Detroit has the assets ( I believe ) of more interest and value to Vancouver. A combination of Sheahan, Abdelkader, B.Smith, Weisse, Franzen . Throw a first round in the mix and age , dollars, and term can work for a Kesler & Edler package.

    • Any discussion with Detroit starts with Nyquist or Tatar and in no way involves Weisse.

  12. Bruce Garrioch is probably the worst source you can tap….he’s always wrong, what he writes is rehash that others have already talked about and what he invents is just plain ridiculous. HEADLINE…Bruce Garrioch reeeports that Hawks, Wings and Pens are interested in Kesler…duhhh…and because he’s in Ottawa doesn’t make him a credible source…Markov ain’t going nowhere unless bergevin is blown away by an offer he can’t refuse…

    here…i’ll report that all playoffs contenders (including the Habs) are interested in Markov….

    • Even on Ottawa trades this guy has no idea. Last year Alfie was being dealt one day then not the next according to him.
      The funny thing about his articles is that everyone in town who is a fan wants Spezza dealt yet he talks him up as if he is some super star. He just isnt in touch with what’s going on at the ground level.

  13. We don’t need Kesler..we need two d-man for playoffs and a right handed shot to play with Sid
    Andy Macdonald, Henrik Tallinder

    David Moss from Coyotes

    • We are deep in d-men. They might trade for one but we need offense in the worst way. No one in the minors and Burnett is proving a bust in his time. Definately not enough time to take a risk on him for the playoffs.

    • How about Stepniak from Calgary. Could play on any of the top 3 lines and come cheap.

      • Yeah , I think Lee would be another great fir for Sid, a shooter and penalty killer

  14. The proposed deal for Kesler from Pittsburgh is basically what Pit got for Staal (Sutter and Dumoulin and #1). The only difference is Pittsburgh got the 8th pick, would give up a (guess) 27th pick and a 3rd rounder). Plus, the Pens offered Staal $6M/yr long term so salary for the “3rd line center” in not an issue to them either.

    So long run:
    Staal, #27* and a 3rd rounder for
    Kesler, #8 and $1M

  15. I had read the Pens would give Derrick Pouliot, Sutter, and a 1st for Kesler. Pouliot is killing it in juniors this year at 60pts so far with plenty left to go

  16. Vancouver should say whoever takes Kesler has to take Luongo also to finally move him.
    Both to Pitts for a bag of pucks.

  17. Just listened to that goof Pierre McGwire on TSN radio…the pens could have almost 14 million in cap space if Martin, Letang, Dupius are all put on LTIR.since there is no salary cap in the playoffs they could come back for the playoffs. If that happens Shero won’t need to have the other GM retain any salary in the deal that’s a big plus for pitt

  18. But what have they done? Two of the greatest players on the planet and one Stanley Cup in two appearences. Some exciting seasons and early play off exits. Either this team is being miss-managed, under coached or we’ve all over valued Sidney, Gino, and Fleury.

    Because really looking at a team with those players you’d think they’d be a dynasty. At least behaving like the early 2000’s Red Wings and getting to the cup over and over (and winning a couple)