The latest on the James van Riemsdyk, Jeff Carter, Ryan Smyth, Brenden Morrow, Zach Parise, Chris Stewart, Kyle Brodziak and more.

TSN.CA: Darren Dreger recently reported Maple Leafs GM Brian Burke is desperate to make a deal and will take a run at Flyers forward James van Riemsdyk.

TORONTO STAR: Bob Mitchell examined the pros and cons of the Maple Leafs acquiring Jeff Carter from Columbus.

SPECTOR’S NOTE:Interesting that Burke might still have interest in van Riemsdyk, who remains on IR with a concussion. As for Carter, the biggest stumbling block is that hefty contract, as Burke tends to shy away from deals which are longer than five years. Carter still has ten more seasons remaining on his contract at $5.25 million per season, plus a no-trade clause that kicks in on July 1st. Acquiring that kind of contract would be out of character for Burke.

STAR-TELEGRAM.COM: Mac Engel interviewed Dallas Stars owner Tom Gaglardi, who acknowledged his team lacks top-six scoring, and is willing to spend to get one. Engel believed Gaglardi gave the impression he would leave such an acquisition up to GM Joe Nieuwendyk to create a trade and would approve it. Gaglardi also gives the impression he’d be building for the long-term.

DALLAS MORNING NEWS: Mike Heika, responding to reader questions, believes Nieuwendyk could retain pending UFA defenseman Nicklas Grossman and then shop his rights in June if unable to re-sign him, though if he got an offer for Grossman which blew him away, he’d take the deal. Heika also suggested if Nieuwendyk approached Brenden Morrow with a trade offer which would be beneficial to his career, he’d accept it.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Hat tip to GJ Berg for the DMN link. The feeling is Nieuwendyk wants to win now, so he’d be looking for deals which would make his team better, not just in the future, but also this season. Thus, the Stars could be in “buyer” mode by the trade deadline, looking to bolster their offense.

Smyth to Broadway?

NEW YORK POST: Larry Brooks reports a “well-placed source” claims Edmonton Oilers winger Ryan Smyth would be willing to accept a trade to the NY Rangers, who would have to clear cap space to take on his salary.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Keep an eye on the Edmonton media over the next twenty-four hours to see what reaction, if any, there is from the Oilers or Smyth to this report.

NORTHJERSEY.COM: Tom Gulitti reports Devils captain Zach Parise doesn’t expect the team’s financial troubles will impact his future with the club, plus he isn’t paying any attention to rumors he might be dealt by the trade deadline.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Hat tip to Dave Lasko. If I’ve said it once, I’ve said it a hundred times: The Devils won’t trade Parise while they’re in the thick of the playoff chase.

DENVER POST: Adrian Dater reports of a rumor former Colorado Avalanche forward Chris Stewart, now with the St. Louis Blues, might be available again, and suggested the possibility of the Avalanche bringing him back.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Remains to be seen if Stewart is in fact available, but I doubt the Avs bring him back. To me, that ship has sailed.

STARTRIBUNE.COM: Michael Russo reports contract talks between the Wild and free agent center Kyle Brodziak could start soon, and is in line for a significant raise from the $1.3 million he’s making this season, which he’ll either get from the Wild, or somebody else.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: The Wild probably won’t trade Brodziak while they’re still battling for a playoff berth, but it remains to be seen if he’ll be re-signed this summer, especially if the Wild should miss the playoffs, as management could decide to shake things up.

CSNBAYAREA.COM: Ray Ratto reports the San Jose Sharks are once again expected to be buyers at the trade deadline. Ratto believes the Sharks need scoring depth.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Hat tip to GJ Berg for the link.

BOSTON HERALD: Stephen Harris believes a trade might be needed to snap the Bruins out of their current funk.

TAMPA BAY TIMES: Damian Cristodero reports Lightning GM Steve Yzerman believes the club’s performance in its next two games at home, plus possibly their three-game road trip after that, will determine if he becomes a buyer or seller at the trade deadline. Forward Ryan Malone and defenseman Pavel Kubina, who both have trade clauses and have been mentioned in trade rumors of late, said they haven’t been approached about accepting a trade.