Monthly Archives: July 2010

Burke takes break from Leafs' rebuild

The first thing Brian Burke says is that he is not done.

There are still free agents who intrigue him. And there are still offers out there for Tomas Kaberle. But after a busy week of free agency in which the Toronto Maple Leafs general manager achieved his goal of bolstering the team’s forward corps, all Burke wants to do is sit back, loosen his tie and take a breather.

Burke…. Good or bad

well with a couple seasons under his belt a pretty recognizable face of the nhl Brian Burke is up on a simple poll today just for discussion

Flyers considering waving Gagne……signing Zherdev?

Could the Flyers consider waiving Simon Gagne if they can’t find a trade partner? According to TSN’s Darren Dreger, a few NHL executives he’s spoken with believe that’s an option Philadelphia will use if they can’t move Gagne in the next few days.

The Flyers need to clear salary cap space to officially sign Nikolai Zherdev, a free agent forward who spent last season playing in Russia. Gagne is due $5.25 million for the 2010-11 season, the last year of his contract.

Make It Seven

Lebron James signing in Miami to play for the heat has affected many NBA franchises, notabley Cleveland. But does lebron have the power to affect franchises not even in his league? Most notabley the florida panthers.

Florida is currently one of the worst attended NHL teams with a below 80% rink filling average per game. I can see this dropping to almost 60% with the newest attraction of Bosh-Lebron-Wade playing for the heat. With those 3 players the Heat actually have a chance at a championship while the panthers are doubtful to even make the playoffs. (sorry panther fans, not this year)

SHARKS SIGN FREE AGENT D HJALMARSSON TO OFFER SHEET

The San Jose Sharks have signed Blackhawks restricted free agent defenceman Niklas Hjalmarsson to a free agent offer sheet, signing the defenceman to a four-year, $14 million dollar contract.

Blue Jackets Rumors

Blue Jackets GM Scott Howson is hoping to add a puck-moving defenseman via trade, but he’s not desperate to do so. Howson reiterated today that he’s not burning up phone lines or begging his fellow GMs for help.

“We’d like to make an upgrade, sure,” Howson said. “But if we don’t get a deal done, I’m fine taking this group of defensemen into the start of the season with us. We think it’s a good group; a group that can win games for you.”

Trading Gagne may be a must

The Flyers appear to be amid a salary-cap squeeze that can only be solved by trading Simon Gagne.

According to various reports in Russia and Canada, the Flyers are close to an agreement with free agent right wing Nikolai Zherdev but need to shed Gagne’s $5.25 million salary to clear room for the talented Ukrainian.

Meanwhile, Gagne told French-speaking television station RDS that he has not yet waived his no-trade clause.

Leafs add Lebda to blue-line

The Maple Leafs have picked up Red Wings’ free agent depth defenceman Brett Lebda, further evidence that a Tomas Kaberle deal is around the corner.The 28-year-old Lebda signed for two years, at a reported $1.45 million US a season. General manager Brian Burke told the Toronto Sun a few days ago he was pursuing one more veteran defenceman that would allow him to concentrate on getting a quality forward for Kaberle during the latter’s trade window, which closes Aug. 15.

Big contract lures Nabokov to KHL

Free agent goaltender Evgeni Nabokov is off the market and off to Russia for the next four years.

Nabokov signed a four-year, worth US$6-million contract with SKA Saint Petersburg, Sportsnet’s John Shannon confirmed Wednesday.

Nabokov, 34, became a free agent after San Jose decided not to re-sign the 10-year veteran.

The Russian goaltender posted a 44-26 record with a 2.43 goals against average last season, helping the Sharks reach the Western Conference final this year, where they were swept by Chicago.

http://www.sportsnet.ca/hockey/2010/07/07/nabokov_russia_contract/

Devils must clear cap space to sign Kovalchuk

The Ilya Kovalchuk watch is becoming a saga, not surprising given his status as arguably the best-ever unrestricted free agent.

Still believed to have the inside track to sign the left wing, Devils GM Lou Lamoriello yesterday repeated his “status quo” mantra regarding his consistent desire to sign Kovalchuk, then added, “Nothing has changed today, yesterday or the day before.”

Interest in Gagne expected to pick up

The Flyers’ attempts to clear space under the salary cap by trading veteran left wing Simon Gagne appear to be indirectly related to the New Jersey Devils’ attempt to re-sign Ilya Kovalchuk.

The Devils reportedly are close to signing Kovalchuk to a seven-year, $60 million extension. Once that deal is finalized, other NHL teams in the running for Kovalchuk — namely, the Los Angeles Kings and New York Islanders — will need to look in another direction to add offense.

Flames' cap puzzle can be solved

The math adds up — with slightly more than US$1 million to spare.

As it stands, the Calgary Flames could say they don’t have salary cap problems — that is provided they’re willing to go with exactly 12 forwards, seven defencemen and two goalies all season and don’t suffer injury problems.

Make that pretty much no injuries at all.

KOVALCHUK TO SIGN SEVEN-YEAR, $60M DEAL WITH DEVILS

According to a report, it appears that Ilya Kovalchuk is on the verge of re-signing with the New Jersey Devils.

The New York Post is reporting that the unrestricted free agent, who played the final 27 games of last season with the Devils, is going to sign a seven-year, $60 million contract with the team as soon as Monday.