Updates on the Flyers, Coyotes & Canadiens – May 12, 2011.

Flyers owner Ed Snider weighs in on his team’s goaltending, the latest on the Coyotes efforts to re-sign key free agents, plus a contract signing could have a domino effect upon the Canadiens defense corps next season.

PHILADELPHIA INQUIRER: Sam Carchidi reported Flyers owner Ed Snider wasn’t pleased with his team’s numerous goalie switches during this year’s playoffs, and appeared to imply adding a goaltender could be high on the team’s priority list. Adding a marquee name could be difficult as the Flyers are tight against the salary cap but Snider didn’t see that as a problem, adding if they were to add a goalie via trade or free agency they could make it work, even under the cap. Snider did however singled out young Sergei Bobrovsky for praise, believing he’s the club’s goalie of the future.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Interesting comments from Snider, and you have to believe he’s passed along his opinions to management. Adding a marquee name means dumping salary to make room for a top goalie, either via trade or free agency.

ARIZONA REPUBLIC: Jim Gintonio reported Phoenix Coyotes GM Don Maloney will once again have to work with a budget devised by the NHL while the team is still awaiting new ownership, which could make things difficult in their efforts to re-sign Ilya Brygalov and defenseman Keith Yandle.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: The Coyotes operated close to the league minimum salary the past two years, and currently have just under $30 million committed to 13 players for next season. If the cap minimum is around $46 million for next season, that would give them just over $16 million, which sounds like a lot, unless you consider it could cost $6-$7 million per season to re-sign Bryzgalov, and perhaps another $4.5-$5.5 million to re-sign Yandle. Suddenly, most of that cap space disappears, leaving little to re-sign RFAs like Kyle Turris, Lauri Korpikoski and  Mikkel Boedker, plus either re-sign or replace Radim Vrbata, Eric Belanger, Vernon Fiddler and Jason LaBarbara.

MONTREAL GAZETTE/CTV MONTREAL/LA PRESSE:  reported the Canadiens efforts to finally sign Russian defenseman Alexei Yemelin probably means the club also intends to re-sign UFA Andrei Markov, noting they’re both clients of agent Don Meehan, and the Habs wouldn’t discard Markov to replace him with Yemelin, who would join the Habs blueline right away. The move would create a “domino effect”, which would see Yemelin, Markov, P.K. Subban and Jaroslav Spacek under contract, along with probably RFA Josh Gorges and UFA Hal Gill, which would mean bidding farewell to James Wisniewski and Roman Hamrlik to free agency.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Yemelin, 25, has played seven pro seasons in Russia and at 6-2, 225 would bring considerable size and experience to the Habs blueline, depending of course on how quickly he adjusts to the NHL game. He’s also got a reputation for physical play, which would also make him a welcome addition. That would also mean Yannick Weber would be the Habs seventh defenseman or could also be used as a winger as he was at times this past season. It remains to be seen if his signing does indeed mean Markov will be re-signed, but it is a promising sign.


  1. If we do something with that Spacek contract, we would have the room to fit in Wisniewski. It may be a long shot but if we could make it happen, boy would i love that.

  2. I really hate the idea of losing Wisniewski. I’m game with Danky above.. that would be a sweet defense.

  3. … and I agree with Ed Snider there. Philly needs to remove a bit of depth elsewhere to pony up for a reliable goalie.

  4. God I’m sick of hearing about the pheonix situation!

  5. I agree with all above, but throw this out as I have before. Muller is gone, supposedly to Dallas according to some internet rumours. That he is leaving is pretty solid, the going to Dallas part less so. That said, I could still see Gill slotted in to replace Muller leaving a spot in the D. Not sure how the D would look as I really like Danky’s suggestion.

  6. I’ve been saying that the Canadiens should ditch spacek for weeks. That would clear the room for Wiz to stay. I’m sure Gauthier sees this, but I hope he thinks the way some of us fans are. If we had that line up of D stated above (which is very similar to what I’ve been posting except with the addition of Yemelin (who I think would be the 7th D as he is completely unproven). Personally, I think it would be the best D we have had in over a decade (probably more). We would have PP cannons, a mix of grit and skill, and gill and gorges as our top PK guys. I really hope we can swing keeping Wiz

  7. With Snider publicly stating his displeasure regarding the Flyers goalie situation, you can bet the #1 priority for Holmgren is to aggressively chase after a marquis goaltender…whether it be by trade or FA. And I would bet there is a very short list of untouchables on the roster, such as Giroux, JVR, and Richards…everyone else could be expendable. Might be hard to move some of them as there are a few players with NTC and NMC, but that doesn’t mean they won’t waive them…it just means they have a choice. Should be a very interesting summer.

  8. You’d have to think that any player resigning in Pheonix might want an extra million a year or so. Unstable ownership does not make Phoenix an attractive destination. It’s not that Winnipeg or anywhere else is a bad place but you have to figure players want to know where they are playing in 2012 unless they’re signing 1 year deals.

  9. i think you guys are a little too stoked on glass Markov.

  10. Agreed, Habs have to get rid of Spacek. How about dealing him to Florida for Bernier?
    Florida needs veteran D-men and also get to salary cap floor.
    Bernier is a big guy who’d look good alongside Eller or Desharnais…
    CH can then use that freed cap space to sign the Wiz.

  11. I have no problem letting Wiz go. I think Weber could replace him, he would be cheaper thus taking up less cap space. PK and Cary’s contract come up next year so I’m taking that into consideration. If we could dump Gomez in the AHL then go for Wiz.

  12. First of all, thanks to all that agreed. and to Marty I think at this point even a mid to late draft pick would satisfy any habs fan regarding Spacek’s return. With what you propose though, I’ve liked Bernier ever since he started in San Jose but as a change up to what you said I think he’d be a better fit on the line with Darche and Moen. Simply because he’s got great size and a good shot and all three get garbage goals that count for good worth. I think Eller showed he is maturing with every game but he has earned the right to play with players like Kostitsyn assuming we re-sign him. But we can never be sure because Kostitsyn in a third line slot leaves question marks for White, Halpern and younger players like Palushaj or Engqvist. So excited to see what happens though, all good posts.

  13. My choice :

    Markov Wisnieski (would be awesome on the powerplay)
    Weber Subban (they played together in the AHL. time to give Weber a real chance)
    Gill Gorges (they are perfect together in their own zone)
    Emelin (40-50 games to adjust in the NHL)

  14. Get rid of Gill!
    He can’t skate, he lumbers after the puck. When he has the puck in our zone he either ices it or gives it away. HE STINKS! He’s also a wimp in the corners. For the life of me I cannot see why people think he’s awesome, I really don’t. Why….because he won a cup in Pittsburgh? My shoe could have won the cup with that team.

  15. I think we should dump Gill, Spacek and Gomer. With all that cap space, imagine the possibilities. Rumor has is that Jagr enjoys playing with Plekanec. I get a semi just thinking about a solid defensive line up like the one about, minus Hal “turtle foot” Gill.
    Markov – Wiz
    Subban – Yemelin

    I put Subban with Yemelin for the simple reason that PK is a target and needs someone whose got his back.

    Thanks for reading


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