Daniel Briere could face a contract buyout, speculation the Maple Leafs could shop Mikhail Grabovski, Dmitry Kulikov shows promise with the Panthers, and the latest on Mike Ribeiro’s contract status.
PHILLY.COM: Frank Seravalli reports Daniel Briere acknowledged the possibility he could be the target of an amnesty contract buyout this summer. The Flyers are allowed to buy out two contracts under the league’s amnesty contract buyout plan, which wouldn’t count against their salary cap for next season. Seravalli noted there’s confusion over whether it would be at two-thirds the remaining value over twice the remaining term, or at 100 percent, which is what Scott Gomez and Wade Redden received.
SPECTOR’S NOTE: Briere’s cap hit is $6.5 million per season for the next two seasons, though the actual salary is $3 million for next season and $2 million for 2014-15. CapGeek has the breakdown under the usual buyout formula, though it won’t count against the Flyers cap if they go the amnesty route. It was rumored the Flyers wanted to shop Briere before the trade deadline but he was unwilling to waive his no-movement clause. If the Flyers buy him out, Briere (despite his struggles this season) would attract interest in this summer’s UFA market.
TORONTO SUN: Steve Simmons ponders what the Maple Leafs might do with Mikhail Grabovski if they re-sign center Tyler Bozak, suggesting the Leafs could trade him this summer to a club which misses out on Derek Roy and Mike Ribeiro in the UFA market. Simmons also suggests they could absorb part of his salary to facilitate a trade.
SPECTOR’S NOTE: Simmons is merely speculating, but he does raise an interesting point about where Grabovski could fit with the Leafs if they re-sign Bozak. He’s got four years left on his contract at a cap hit of $5.5 million per season, which won’t attract much interest unless the Leafs agree to pick up part of it. His relationship with coach Randy Carlyle could also be a factor. I expressed my doubts in today’s Canadian Corner of the Leafs moving him, and I doubt they’ll do it if Bozak isn’t re-signed. They could also write off Grabovski’s struggles to the shortened season and gamble he’ll rebound next season. Still, if there’s genuine interest in Grabovski this summer, GM Dave Nonis could entertain offers.
MIAMI HERALD: George Richards recently noted 22-year-old Florida Panthers defenseman Dmitry Kulikov has shown promise and a little more enthusiasm of late. Kulikov remains a work in progress, but GM Dale Tallon said he never considered moving the young blueliner.
SPECTOR’S NOTE: Kulikov was linked to the Red Wings, Flyers and Bruins in the rumor mill prior to the trade deadline, but Tallon sees him as a key part of the club’s future. I don’t believe he’ll be available this summer in the trade market.
RDS.CA: Renaud Lavoie recently reported via Twitter “Mike Ribeiro does not expect to sign a contract extension before the end of the season. He expect talks to resume after the playoffs.”