The NHL Olympic roster freeze is 3 pm ET today. Will there be any significant moves? Read on for the latest on Sam Gagner, Ryan Callahan, Andrew MacDonald, Ryan Miller and more.
OTTAWA SUN: Bruce Garrioch reports time is running out for Senators GM Bryan Murray to make a trade before today’s Olympic roster freeze but so far he can’t find a willing trade partner. Murray is in the market for a scoring winger and it’s believed he’s interested in Buffalo’s Matt Moulson. Don Brennan believes Murray should forget about Moulson and instead try to land Sabres versatile and gritty captain Steve Ott. He cites an insider claiming the Sabres want a high draft pick and prospect for Ott.
BUFFALO NEWS: John Vogl reports Sabres GM Tim Murray doesn’t expect to make any moves before the Olympic roster freeze goes into effect today. He is willing to get something done by the March 5 trade deadline.
WASHINGTON POST: Neil Greenberg notes the Capitals have been linked to Sabres goalie Ryan Miller in the rumor mill, but doesn’t believe he’ll be a good fit for the Capitals, citing in part the expensive return required to land him.
SPECTOR’S NOTE: A team could contact the Sabres with a significant offer today but Tim Murray doesn’t sound as though he’s expecting that to happen. He’s in no hurry to move Miller, Moulson, Ott or anyone else. It’s more worthwhile to wait until after the Olympic break, as teams will be more willing to deal leading up to the trade deadline in March, which in turn could drive up the trade value of those players he’s willing to move.
TSN/ESPN/SPORTING NEWS: reports trade talks have intensified between the Edmonton Oilers and Los Angeles Kings. The Kings are reportedly interested in Oilers center Sam Gagner, with the Kings sending left winger Kyle Clifford to Edmonton as part of the return.
SPECTOR’S NOTE: Gagner is making $4.8 million per season, Clifford $1.075 million per. The Kings have limited cap space. To make this work the Oilers may have to pick up part of Gagner’s salary and the Kings might have to move another salaried player.
NEW YORK POST: Larry Brooks reports it appears Ryan Callahan won’t be re-signing with the Rangers before today’s Olympic roster freeze, and it also appears unlikely he’ll be traded by then. The two sides reportedly remain well apart in contract negotiations. GM Glen Sather apparently hasn’t received a suitable offer yet for Callahan. Dan Girardi’s contract negotiations are also expected to remain unresolved by today’s roster freeze.
SPECTOR’S NOTE: As with the Sabres, it’s possible the Rangers could receive a significant offer before the 3 pm roster freeze, but I wouldn’t hold my breath. It looks like the stare-down between Sather and Callahan’s agent (and to a lesser degree Girardi’s) will continue for a few more weeks.
NEW YORK POST: Brett Cyrgalis reports the NY Islanders have placed defenseman Andrew MacDonald on the trade block after he rejected a four-year, $16 million offer. It’s believed the MacDonald camp seek a four-or five-year deal at $5 million per. Isles GM Garth Snow has already rejected a “substantial offer” for MacDonald.
SPECTOR’S NOTE: It remains to be seen what the Isles could get for MacDonald. Remember one of my golden rules about general managers: never underestimate their ability to grossly overpay at either the trade deadline or in the free agent market. For those of you scoffing at the notion of MacDonald getting a five-year, $25 million contract as a free agent this summer, say hello to Jason Garrison.