The latest on the Ducks, Lightning, Maple Leafs, Flames, Oilers, and Wild.
THE GLOBE AND MAIL: David Shoalts points out 13 Flames will have contracts expiring this summer, including nine UFAs. He expects GM Jay Feaster could be busy near the trade deadline…The Tampa Bay Lightning need a goalie and a defenseman, while the Toronto Maple Leafs seek a top-six forward. Shoalts suspects Anaheim Ducks GM Bob Murray is probably tired of listening to Leafs GM Brian Burke’s pitches for Ryan Getzlaf, Corey Perry, Bobby Ryan or all three…Flames GM Jay Feaster insists he won’t move Jarome Iginla, but Shoalts wonders if Feaster might consider trading goalie Miikka Kiprusoff or defenseman Jay Bouwmeester.
SPECTOR’S NOTE: As long as the Flames remain in playoff contention, Feaster could become a “buyer” rather than a “seller”. He’s not moving Iginla, Kiprusoff or Bouwmeester…I think Shoalts is being a tad facetious regarding Burke’s “pitches” for those Ducks, but I wouldn’t be surprised if the Leafs GM has at least made inquiries, though the asking price for any of those Ducks would be very expensive, perhaps too expensive for Burke…I don’t see how the Lightning can address their needs without giving up a good player or at least a promising one, like Brett Connolly.
CALGARY SUN: Eric Francis claims the Edmonton Oilers are actively shopping for a defenseman, and also believes Ales Hemsky’s tenure with the Oilers is coming to an end.
SPECTOR’S NOTE: Hemsky will be dealt between now and the trade deadline, provided he doesn’t suffer another serious shoulder injury. Maybe the Oilers should move him sooner rather than later?
STARTRIBUNE.COM: Michael Russo reports Minnesota Wild GM Chuck Fletcher is monitoring his struggling team closely, and admitted he’s been on the phone more frequently now that the NHL trade deadline is on the horizon. Fletcher said he’ll be aggressive if need be in the trade market, but isn’t seeking short-term fixes. Russo suggested the Wild might be interested in New Jersey Devils winger Zach Parise, but more likely as a free agent rather than as a trade acquisition. Russo also noted the Ducks might be willing to move a core player. The Wild have depth in defense and in goal to use as trade bait.
SPECTOR’S NOTE: Injuries have taken a toll on the Wild this season. Fletcher showed a willingness last summer to make bold moves, and could do so again in the coming weeks, especially if the Wild appear in danger of falling out of playoff contention. The Devils won’t move Parise at the trade deadline.