The conundrum facing the Sabres with Ryan Miller and Thomas Vanek, plus a rumor out of Sweden claiming the Oilers were shopping Linus Omark’s rights.
NBC SPORTS PRO HOCKEY TALK: Joe Yerdon examines the conundrum facing the Buffalo Sabres over goaltender Ryan Miller and winger Thomas Vanek, who are both eligible for unrestricted free agency next summer. It was thought the Sabres would trade Miller this summer but no deal has materialized, which could lead to a crowded crease to start the season.
Yerdon believes the Sabres might want to re-sign Vanek, but he’ll likely head to free agency next summer, meaning he could fetch a big return at the trade deadline. A playoff push by the Sabres this season might convince Vanek to stay, but could also affect the Sabres efforts to move Miller.
SPECTOR’S NOTE: This was a bad summer for the Sabres to shop those two, as the decline in the salary cap means few teams with cap space and the willingness to spend it in the trade market. Had the cap stayed at $70.3 million or increased, one or both would’ve been dealt by now. The only way the Sabres can move move either guy this summer is if they agree to pick up part of their salaries for the upcoming season. Still, if the Sabres are struggling again by the trade deadline, they shouldn’t have much difficulty finding interested trade partners.
EDMONTON JOURNAL: David Staples cited a report out of Sweden claiming the Edmonton Oilers may finally be ready to trade the rights of winger Linus Omark, who spent last season playing in Switzerland. It’s been subsequently reported the Oilers aren’t close to dealing Omark’s rights.
SPECTOR’S NOTE: The Oilers could still be shopping Omark’s rights – which might explain his comments which suggested something was happening regarding a return to the NHL – but haven’t found any takers yet. That could change come September.