The Leafs, Blues, Red Wings and Oilers face possible player moves, plus updates on Derek Stepan, Andrej Meszaros and Mathieu Perreault.

THE GLOBE AND MAIL: David Shoalts reports David Clarkson’s suspension makes things tight for the Leafs payroll, as they’ll have to find a replacement for him while his salary still counts against their cap. It also adversely affects their efforts to re-sign Cody Franson, as Shoalts claimed the Leafs goal was to sign Franson and create cap space by carrying only 21 players. The Leafs could face going the first ten games of the season without Clarkson and Franson.

CALGARY SUN: Wes Gilbertson wonders if former Leafs GM and current Flames president of hockey operations Brian Burke has identified any trade targets on his former team.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: After signing Mason Raymond yesterday, the Leafs have less than $1 million in cap space. Clarkson’s antics merely worsen the situation.If they hope to re-sign Franson, they might have to wait until after Clarkson’s suspension ends in late-October.

NBC SPORTS PRO HOCKEY TALK: NY Rangers GM Glen Sather told MSG Network he doesn’t expect Derek Stepan’s contract impasse to last much longer. “It’s unfortunate that Derek has decided to listen to his agent. I don’t think Derek’s going to let this linger too long. I don’t think he’s big enough of a fool …”

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Sather took a similar approach in his contract negotiations last year with defenseman Michael Del Zotto. He sounds very much like a GM who knows all the leverage is with him.

Are the Flyers showcasing Andrej Meszaros?

Are the Flyers showcasing Andrej Meszaros?

CSNPHILLY.COM: Tim Panaccio wonders if the Flyers are showcasing defenseman Andrej Meszaros to prove he’s healthy, making it possible to shop him to create a roster spot for young blueliner Erik Gustafsson.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Meszaros’ $4 million salary for this season won’t make him easy to move at this time of year.

ESPN.COM/BMD.COM/STLTODAY.COM: With the St. Louis Blues signing winger Brenden Morrow, it’s expected the club could make room for him by trading a third or fourth line forward. Possibilities include recently-acquired Maxim Lapierre, Vladimir Sobotka, Chris Porter, Ryan Reaves and Adam Cracknell.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: A move via trade, waivers or demotion will also be necessary to ensure they remain salary cap compliant. CapGeek indicates they have roughly $850k in cap space.

DETROIT FREE PRESS: Helene St. James reports injuries to several players (Jordin Tootoo, Darren Helm, Patrick Eaves and Jonas Gustavsson) could help the Red Wings become cap compliant to start the season.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Once those players start returning they’ll have to free up cap space via trade, waivers or demotions.

EDMONTON JOURNAL: Jim Matheson reports the Oilers hope to replace injured centers Ryan Nugent-Hopkins and Sam Gagner (both sidelined until November) from within. GM Craig MacTavish, however, isn’t ruling out plucking a player off waivers or making a contract-for-contract trade.

CSNWASHINGTON.COM: Chuck Gormley wonders if Mathieu Perreault is the odd man out for the Capitals.