Updates on the Devils, Bruins and Penguins.

Devils GM Lou Lamoriello talks about his key free agents, Tomas Kaberle isn’t doing enough to earn a new contract with Boston, plus the latest on three key Penguins UFAs.

NORTHJERSEY.COM: Tom Gulitti reports Devils general manager Lou Lamoriello hopes to re-sign restricted free agent forward Zach Parise “as expeditious as possible”, though Parise subsequently told Gulitti via e-mail contract talks had not yet started.  Lamoriello also said he hopes to re-sign UFAs Andy Greene and Johan Hedberg, and confirmed upgrading his defense was “something we’re looking at”.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Still over two months until July 1st, when Parise becomes a restricted free agent while Greene and Hedberg become UFAs, so Lamoriello still has plenty of time to make offers to those three. Don’t be surprised if that doesn’t happen until June as he’d likely want to see both how much money he’ll have available under next season’s salary cap to work with, plus he might want to listen to any trade buzz leading up to the June entry draft in hopes of possibly landing a puck-moving defenseman.

BOSTON GLOBE: Kevin Paul Dupont recently reported defenseman Tomas Kaberle must pick up his current post-season performance or the Bruins might let him walk as a free agent this summer.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Kaberle’s been invisible in the first three games of the Bruins-Canadiens series, which isn’t why the Bruins acquired him in the first place. If Boston should be eliminated in the first round, that could prove a factor in where he’ll be playing next season. If the Bruins don’t re-sign Kaberle the Devils might have interest but they’d also have to dump salary at some point in the summer to make room for his contract.

PITTSBURGH POST-GAZETTE: Dave Molinari recently reported blue collar Penguins like Max Talbot, Pascal Dupuis and Craig Adams are unrestricted free agents this summer. They’d prefer to remain with the Penguins but given the salary cap that might not be possible to retain all three. It’s currently unknown which free agents GM Ray Shero would prefer to retain.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Hat tip to “Patrick”, who suggested Adams might return, Talbot might be replaceable via a more affordable call-up, while the Penguins might not be able to afford Dupuis after this season. I concur with his take. Shero would probably love to retain all three but that might not be possible unless one or two agree to pay cuts given the Penguins limited cap space.

13 Comments

  1. I’m baffeled why kabby has been a bust with Boston. I thought he would be a perfect fit there. He wasn’t very good for them in the regular season as well. If he isn’t adjusting well to the team defence style of play in bean town, I doubt he’ll play very well in NJ. Maybe his style of play is better suited for a run-and-gun type of team…Washington?

  2. … and cue the haters who think Kaberle has always been overrated and he’s a bust in Boston because he’s always sucked and now the world knows what these closet GMs have their entire lives…

    I think it’s a chemistry and comfort issue. He knew exactly where he stood on the Leafs blue line, and I’m just not sure he’s been mentally able to figure out where he fits in on the Bruins. I think he needs more time to acclimate to the team and teammates, but I’m sure he will probably be left to become a UFA at this rate. I would think (hope) he’ll be able to bounce back just fine with a full year at a new team.

  3. I have to agree that the issue with Kaberle in Boston is not skill, but rather chemistry and comfourt. With the less than stellar play of both Lebda and Lashoff, I wouldn’t be surprised if Kaberle returns to Toronto.

  4. no it’s not Kaberle, it is Boston. Does anyone shine on this overcoached joke of a team? Horton is the only one with the chance of heriocs, and that’s cause he’s not weighed down by Bruin culture.

  5. The Bruins have played pretty poorly as a team lately. Hard to pin it on just one player. They should probably try and stop giving up goals two minutes into the game. Catch-up hockey is how teams like the Bruins lose games, especially against teams like Montreal and New York who can sit back on a lead and play defense, especially when their power-play is so bad and not to mention getting limited opportunities. It’d probably also help if the officiating wasn’t so pisspoor in this year’s playoffs. It’s been pretty terrible across the board. Too many missed calls, too many terrible calls. Really affects one’s ability to enjoy the games.

  6. 2011-2012 Boston Bruins Offseason:
    Heres what BOS should do if they were smart

    Cap Geek:
    NHL CAP: 59.4 Mill

    Trades:

    To PHX: David Krejci (3.75), TOR 1ST, and Dennis Seidenberg (3.25)
    To BOS: (RFA) Keith Yandle (1.2)

    Boston needs a defenseman like Keith Yandle. He’s fast, a great puck moving defenseman, and a power play quarterback. Trading Seidenberg frees up cap space.
    Phoenix needs a number one center and Krejci fits that well. He can be the guy they need to set up Shane Doan. The pick gives allows them to draft anything they need. Krejci also goes to the West, which means he won’t hurt us more than once, if at all. Hamill is a throw-in. Seidenberg helps with their Defensive depth.

    Cap Space Gained: 5.8 Million

    To COL: Tim Thomas (5) and Chris Kelly (2)
    To BOS: 2nd and 3rd round picks

    Boston Frees up a lot of cap space, Boston gets a 2nd and 3rd round pick that helps them build up their youth.
    COL gets a number one goalie and gets a gritty/decent depth center that can play 3rd line and PK. Trading Thomas to COL, we won’t see him that much.

    Cap Space Gained: 7 Million

    Total Cap Space gained: 12 Million

    Players Let Go:

    Marc Savard: Retires
    Cap Space gained: 4 Million

    Savard after having his second concussion decides to call it a career. It is sad this had to happen, but it is for the best. His health is a number one priority and I don’t think anyone wants to see him get hurt again. Maybe he takes a job somewhere in the front office…..just a thought…

    Michael Ryder: Released
    Cap Space gained: 4 Million

    Ryder was a big disappointment after his first season with the Bruins. He never played up to his 4 million dollar contract and I’m happy to see him go.

    Tomas Kaberle: Released
    Cap Space gained: 4.2 Million

    After trading for Yandle, we don’t really need him anymore. I know we wasted Colborne and picks, but maybe we get lucky and Colborne doesn’t pan out. I would much rather have Yandle anyway.

    Shane Hnidy: Released
    Cap Space gained: 500K

    Depth guy that was great but he’ll probably retire anyway and we have many young kids who can fill his shoes as a 7th defenseman.

    Total Cap Space Gained: 12.7 Million

    After All Moves:

    Total Cap Space gained: 24.7 Million

    Free Agent Signings:

    Brad Richards: 56 Million over 8 years
    Cap Hit: 7 Million

    The reason we trade Krejci is because we bring him in. He’s a proven superstar center. He helps fill the void Savard left and gives this team elite forward they need to make a real cup run.

    Keith Yandle: 22 Million over 5 years
    Cap Hit: 4.4 Million

    They lock up their RFA defensemen that they traded for, for the next four years. This takes the sting out of letting Kaberle go IMO. He is only going to get better, has great leadership qualities and is a definite top 2-4 Defenseman.

    Marc Recchi: 750K over 1 year
    Cap hit: 750K

    Rex comes back for one more year. He takes a bit of a pay cut. He has a lot of chances to move up on the record sheets. He feels that he can go one more year. He also gives the Bruins leadership along with continuing to mentor the younger guys, Seguin, Caron, Marchand……

    Brad Marchand: 8 Million over 4 years
    Cap Hit: 2

    This kid is only going to get better and having him for another four years will be great. How he played I think a 2 million cap hit is definitely reasonable.

    Simon Gagne: 8 Million over 2 years
    Cap Hit: 4 Million

    Yes Gagne is injury prone, but when healthy he is a proven 30 goal scorer. He is quick, and also can play PK. Two years is reasonable if he stays healthy. Since he was injured last year his cap hit should go down a bit. He made 5 million so I felt 4.5 was reasonable.

    Eric Brewer: 12.2 million over 3 years:
    Cap Hit: 4.06

    Brewer gives you a legitimate top 4 defenseman who is good at both ends of the ice. He has a wicked slap shot and is physical. He fits the mold of a Bruins “old time hockey” defenseman IMO.

    Alex Auld: 750k over 1 year:
    Cap Hit: 750 K

    We had Auld a few years ago and he was pretty solid. As a backup he is great. He will come pretty cheap and we don’t need him long term. He doesn’t, at all, give us the 1, 2 punch we had but we need to show Tuukka he is THE GO TO GUY and bringing in Auld shows him that.

    After All Moves:

    Total Cap Spaced left: 1.74 Million

    Doesn’t give us anything to work with but with this team, we shouldn’t have to worry about fixing anything.

    Front Office Moves:

    Claude Julien/whole coaching staff needs to be fired…………and someone who knows a well-rounded game needs to be
    Brought in.

    After all said and done……………

    LINES:

    Lucic-Richards-Horton/Gagne
    Marchand-Bergeron (A)-Gagne/Horton
    Peverley-Seguin-Recchi (A)
    Paille-Campbell-Thornton
    Caron

    Boychuck-Chara (C)
    Yandle-Brewer
    McQuaid-Ference
    Kampfer

    Rask
    Auld

  7. John smith, ur plan is so elaborate it has zero chance of happening. But if we aren’t serious, I will opine on what I think is wrong with your proposals. Thomas and kelly for a second and third is ridiculous. Especially after the year Thomas has had. Nevermind the fact he has a nmc.
    And trading krejci before you gamble on a chance to land Richards is reckless. If he doesn’t sign, you’re screwed. And I seriously doubt savard walks away from millions of dollars to take a front office job making 1/10th his salary. Most of your other proposals actually aren’t that bad IMO. But litlle to none of that will happen so it is what it is…one long ass post.

  8. @John Smith

    I like it man =o) I tend to do that a lot too, working numbers and contracts in my head/spare time and what a team should do. The releasing of players is a rough workshop, if they don’t go to Europe or another team doesn’t pick them up it really hurts. Plus all the moves that this requires is crazy; but at least thought out and you took your time putting it all together.

    Pheonix won’t be getting rid of Mr.Yandle; they need a face of a team up in Winnipeg =o).

    And to everyone else with the whole Kaberle deal:
    Kaberle doesn’t have chemistry with the team itself, I don’t blame the cat though. Boston’s a tough city/team to come into… also he played for the Leafs for many years, that’s bound to screw something up in a players ability to work with a team =o).
    He IS a skilled player, doesn’t fit into the Boston bruising image; would probably have better in a different system.

  9. why would you bring in Richards to play in front of Bergeron, and make Seguin your #3 centre? You might as well trade Seguin if he’s never going to get a chance to be the #1 centre he’s been touted as.

  10. LOL DurtMCHur

    ” But litlle to none of that will happen so it is what it is…one long ass post.”

    Classic

  11. Had you considered that guys might not sign in Boston after 2 years of outrageous upsets in the playoffs?

  12. Well John Smith do you believe in the Easter Bunny ?
    Where to start?
    Yandle goes nowhere, Coyotes aren’t getting rid of thier best “D”
    Av’s will not touch Thomas’s contract
    Richards either stays in Dallas or goes to NYR as a ufa
    Marchand will want more than a 2mil avg especially over 4yrs(may get it done over 2yrs)
    Gagne may stay for 4 per over 2yrs
    Can’t imagine Savard gives up his salary
    Recchi, he’s yours
    Brewer, I guess that is possible. Although others will likely have interest as well
    Unless Aulds wants to leave the Habs which I doubt

  13. At least john has some vision, although its more like a mirrage(hope i speld that right!!!!!)
    Burkie should make a offer to talbot, and out him on a line with colby…..