July 10, 2009 News and Rumors Roundup

RANGERS: KOTALIK IN, ZHERDEV LIKELY OUT

DEVILS CENTER ATTENTION ON MORRISON

Arbitration, Alex Tanguay, Brian Boyle

Penguins: McKee could fill hole on defense


RANGERS: KOTALIK IN, ZHERDEV LIKELY OUT

LARRY BROOKS

So what does yesterday’s three-year, $9 million signing of Ales Kotalik, a 30-year-old winger with a modest ceiling who has never been a plus-player in seven NHL seasons and who has been on the decline for the past three years, tell us about the Rangers?

Well, it tells us that 24-year-old Nikolai Zherdev is almost certain to be done on Broadway once his salary arbitration case is decided, out after one season and at the cost of 25-year-old Fedor Tyutin, surely a more valuable defenseman than Wade Redden and Michal Rozsival.

It also tells us that management doesn’t believe that P.A. Parenteau or any of his teammates with the AHL Wolf Pack are capable of earning a job in camp and contributing offensively during the early part of the season. Same old, same old for the Rangers, who never met a middling veteran they didn’t like better than their own minor league, uh, prospects.

http://www.nypost.com/seven/07102009/sports/rangers/rangers__kotalik_in__zherdev_likely_out_178502.htm

DEVILS CENTER ATTENTION ON MORRISON

MARK EVERSON

With Saku Koivu now a Duck, general manager Lou Lamoriello’s options for adding an offensive center are dwindling. It seems more and more likely that his pronouncement of only adding “role players” to his roster actually will be the case.

Former Devil Brendan Morrison is one offensive center still available on the unrestricted market. Agent Kurt Overhardt refused comment on whether Lamoriello is trying to sign Morrison, but did say “there are a couple of things going on,” and that he expects the 33-year-old to sign somewhere in a few days.

Morrison had sought a trade from New Jersey when he was packaged with Denis Pederson to Vancouver for Alexander Mogilny on March 14, 2000.

Meanwhile, Overhardt said negotiations with the Devils for Travis Zajac have not hit any obstacle, despite Zajac’s filing for arbitration as a restricted free agent.

http://www.nypost.com/seven/07092009/sports/devils/devils_center_attention_on_morrison_178369.htm

Arbitration, Alex Tanguay, Brian Boyle

Word is that several teams have kicked the tires on UFA Alex Tanguay (and checked his repaired shoulder), but nothing imminent. We hear Rangers also have paddles in the trade waters out West, no specifics, although people in the info stream suggest San Jose, L.A., Edmonton and Chicago.

***Boyle’s deal is $525,000 per for two years, down from his $750,000 in ’08-09. Looks like a bargain.

http://weblogs.newsday.com/sports/hockey/rangers/blog/2009/07/thursday_topics_arbitration_al.html

Penguins: McKee could fill hole on defense

Shelly Anderson, Pittsburgh Post-Gazette

The Penguins might be close to signing a defenseman, one of the final missing pieces for their roster.

Jay McKee, an unrestricted free agent who spent the past three seasons with St. Louis, is likely to decide in the next few days where he will spend the 2009-10 season, and that could be with the Penguins, his agent, Pat Morris, said yesterday.

“When the Penguins come calling, it catches your attention,” Morris said of the recently crowned Stanley Cup champions. “I think there are things he does well that the Penguins like. He can be a shutdown guy.”

McKee, who turns 32 before the season starts, is considered a skilled shot-blocker. At 6 feet 4, 203 pounds, he adds a physical presence.

The Penguins lost defensive defensemen Rob Scuderi and Hal Gill to free agency this month.

http://www.post-gazette.com/pg/09191/982967-61.stm


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