Latest on Vincent Lecavalier, Ryan Miller, Kris Letang, Daniel Briere, Nathan Horton and more.

CBC.CA: Elliotte Friedman reports hearing the Tampa Bay Lightning are shopping Ryan Malone, preferring to avoid a buyout, offering up a draft pick as enticement…Red Wings pending UFA Valtteri Filppula has been linked to the Columbus Blue Jackets…Friedman wondered if Ottawa Senators GM Bryan Murray might approach the Chicago Blackhawks to inquire about Marian Hossa’s availability.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Not surprising if the Lightning are trying to move Malone. They need to free up some cap space, and trading Malone would be easier than shopping Vincent Lecavalier and his big contract…As Friedman noted, it seems every Finnish player potentially available this summer is being linked to the Blue Jackets because of their Finnish GM. Cap-wise, however, I’m not sure the Jackets would pay Filppula $5 million per season…I don’t believe the Blackhawks would try to move Hossa. They don’t have to dismantle their roster for cap reasons as they did in 2010.

ESPN.COM: Pierre LeBrun reports former teammates Vincent Lecavalier and Brad Richards – both key players in the Lightning’s Cup win in 2004 – are awaiting their fate as they could receive compliance buyouts from their respective teams…Ryan Miller’s future in Buffalo remains uncertain…Some Philadelphia scribes suggested Tim Thomas as an option for the Flyers to replace Ilya Bryzgalov…The Kings and Rob Scuderi’s agent continue to talk contract.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: We’ll find out by 5 pm ET on July 4 if Lecavalier and/or Richards receive compliance buyouts…The Sabres could shop Miller but his $6.25 million cap hit for next season could be tough to move…No word yet if Thomas intends to return to action next season.

Could Kris Letang be dealt to the Maple Leafs?

Could Kris Letang be dealt to the Maple Leafs?

TRIBLIVE.COM/TSN.CA: Rob Rossi reports Pittsburgh Penguins defenseman Kris Letang is uneasy over his status with the club. He hasn’t sought a trade, and GM Ray Shero maintains his wish is to re-sign him, but Shero hasn’t ruled out a trade. If the two sides can’t agree on a new contract, Rossi claims it’s believed Letang might prefer being dealt to the Toronto Maple Leafs. He lacks a trade clause, however, so has no say over where he could be dealt. If Shero shops Letang, Rossi believes they’d want an NHL-ready player under contract, at least one top prospect and a potential first round pick.

TRIBLIVE.COM: Joe Starkey believes trading Letang would weaken the Penguins.

TORONTO SUN: Lance Hornby believes the Penguins would seek promising blueliner Jake Gardiner as part of the return.

SPECTOR’S NOTE:  The Leafs would also have to re-sign Letang to a long-term deal worth at least $7 million per season. It would also mean the inevitable departure of Dion Phaneuf, and could affect future signings. Such a move could potentially weaken the Leafs.

STLTODAY.COM/LA PRESSE: Speculation links recently bought-out center Daniel Briere with the St Louis Blues and Ottawa Senators.

DENVER POST: Adrian Dater claims the Florida Panthers remain interested in Nathan MacKinnon, maybe enough to “give up a a good roster player and/or prospect to trade up from their No. 2 position.”

SPECTOR’S NOTE: I still doubt any team will part with the Avalanche’s asking price for the first overall pick. Indeed, the first overall pick over the past 36 years has only been traded three times. We’ll find out for sure this Sunday if the Avs retain the pick or trade it.

CSNNE.COM: Joe Haggarty reports a source claims Nathan Horton “will be looking for a 5-6 year deal in the range of $5.5-6 million per year if he hits the open market”but might be willing to accept a little less to remain with the Bruins, provided he gets the same term he’s seeking via free agency.

WASHINGTON POST/CSNWASHINGTON.COM: Katie Carrera reports Capitals GM George McPhee could provide no updates on contract talks with pending UFAs Mike Ribeiro and Matt Hendricks. Chuck Gormley wondered if the Caps fail to re-sign Ribeiro if they’ll replace him via trade.