Assessing which Flyers forwards could stay or go, possible moves by the Hurricanes, and updates on Alex Tanguay, Jeff Deslauriers and Oscar Moller.
CSNPHILLY.COM: Tim Panaccio recently recapped the Philadelphia Flyers forwards performances this season, suggesting Jeff Carter is the most likely to be dealt to address their goaltending issues, while Scott Hartnell could also be a trade candidate. If UFA Ville Leino seeks more than $3.2 million per season the Flyers probably won’t re-sign him. RFA Dan Carcillo might not get a new contract, or one that he’d like. Ian Laperriere will likely never play again due to post-concussion symptoms, and Nikolay Zherdev won’t be re-signed.
SPECTOR’S NOTE: Carter’s name has been in the rumor mill for several years now yet the Flyers have retained him. Sure, it’s possible they could shop him this summer, but that expensive 11-year contract (with trade clauses that kick in after next season) could also keep him tethered to the Flyers. Hartnell might be a more viable trade candidate, although it’s not the first time his name has popped up in the mill without anything happening. Leino might be willing to re-sign for under $3 million per.
RALEIGH NEWS & OBSERVER: Chip Alexander reported on the “state of the team” press conference delivered yesterday by Carolina Hurricanes general manager Jim Rutherford, particularly the potential off-season roster moves he has in store. Rutherford will likely re-signed pending UFAs Erik Cole and Chad LaRose, but may lose Joni Pitkanen and Jussi Jokinen to free agency. Veteran winger Cory Stillman could be back but not if Jokinen is re-signed. He could also add a defenseman via trade or free agency as well as someone to help bolster their power-play, plus he’ll look to add an experienced backup for Cam Ward and perhaps a fourth line center.
SPECTOR’S NOTE: My thanks to everyone who notified me as to the pertinent player issues noted above. I’d say it’s a given Cole and LaRose stay, Pitkanen won’t be back, and it’s a toss-up if Jokinen or Stillman return. Rutherford shouldn’t have too much difficulty finding an affordable, experienced backup and a fourth line center via free agency this summer, but it’s going to cost him to bolster his defense and add a power-play specialist.
CALGARY SUN: Eric Francis recently reported Flames GM Jay Feaster said re-signing pending UFA forward Alex Tanguay remains a realistic goal.
SPECTOR’S NOTE: Given how Tanguay has bounced around in recent years and his genuine happiness playing in Calgary last season it’s possible he could accept less money than what he’d get via free agency to remains with the Flames.
EDMONTON JOURNAL: Jim Matheson reports Oilers goaltender Jeff Deslauriers will be eligible for UFA status this summer and isn’t sure where he stands with the club. Matheson believes if the Oilers want Deslauriers back, he’ll have to agree to a two-way deal, so he might have to test his options via free agency by either signing with another NHL team or playing in Europe.
SPECTOR’S NOTE: I doubt the Oilers want him back and if they did I don’t see Deslauriers accepting a two-way deal or even a one-way deal if he ends up spending another season in the minors. He’s a goner via free agency, but where he ends up remains to be seen.
LAKINGSINSIDER.COM: Rich Hammond reports a Kings source confirmed forward Oscar Moller has been talking with several Swedish teams and it is possible he could play in the Swedish Elite League next season, but it would be with the Kings blessing, plus his contract would contain an “out” clause, allowing him to return to the NHL, presumably to the Kings.