NHL News and Rumors – Monday July 13, 2009

Looks like Jiri Hudler is off to Russia

Blue Jackets wait for trade opportunities

Ducks and Canucks talked a Pronger deal?

Very few NHL goaltender openings remainLooks like Jiri Hudler is off to Russia


Jiri Hudler has been offered as much as $5 million per year — tax exempt — to play the next two seasons in Russia, which is why the Red Wings don’t believe he’ll return.

Hudler, 25, agreed this week to play for Moscow Dynamo of the Kontinental Hockey League, a Russia-based group that has gained considerable traction as a competitor to the NHL in recent years. But there’s a catch. Because Hudler filed for arbitration last weekend, he’ll remain the Wings’ property, and when or if he terminates his relationship with the KHL, he’ll have to honor the contract an arbitrator decides upon this summer.

“My understanding is it’s like the situation with Alexei Yashin, who left the Senators but when he came back, his contract with Ottawa held,” general manager Ken Holland said. “We know Jiri is going to have a contract with us, we’re going to ask for a two-year deal, and that’s going to hold for whenever he comes back. I’m operating under the assumption he’s gone for now. I talked to him yesterday, Mike Bab***** spoke to him. I had Dan Cleary call him, and Kris Draper called him. We’re under the impression he’s gone.”


Blue Jackets wait for trade opportunities


Free agency has slowed to a crawl in its second week, and a handful of NHL general managers are digging in for a game of chicken. On one side we have GMs who desperately need salary cap room. On the other side are clubs — like the Blue Jackets — who are looking for a certain type of player.

The Blue Jackets need help on defense. The San Jose Sharks need cap relief. They are perfect examples of what has become the second stage of free agency since the dawn of the NHL’s salary cap almost five years ago.

Earlier this offseason, Blue Jackets GM Scott Howson offered to trade forward Jason Chimera to the Sharks in exchange for defenseman Christian Ehrhoff.

Sharks GM Doug Wilson was not interested. Ehrhoff is a second-pair defenseman — maybe a first-pair guy in Columbus — and he can run a power play. Chimera has a rare combination of size and speed, but he’s seen as a “plus” third-line left winger.

It makes sense that Wilson said no. But he might be forced to soften his stance on such trade offers as training camp winds down.

NHL rules require that all clubs be at or below the $56.8 million salary cap limit by opening night, and that’s going to take some work for the Sharks.


Ducks and Canucks talked a Pronger deal?

Kevin Paul Dupont

A West Coast team (possibly the Canucks?) is rumored to have offered the Ducks a better deal for Pronger than the whopping package (Joffrey Lupul, Luca Sbisa, and two first-round picks) the Flyers gave up. If it was the Canucks, a like package would have included Ryan Kesler and Kevin Bieksa, possibly Alex Edler . . .


Very few NHL goaltender openings remain

Brian Costello

Did Martin Biron price himself out of a job in the NHL? Looks like it.

Eleven days into the free agent season and virtually every team has filled their starter and backup jobs for 2009-10.

So Biron may have to look for a job in Europe or the Kontinental League. Same with the other NHL proven UFA goalies Manny Fernandez, Manny Legace, Martin Gerber, Brent Johnson, Joey MacDonald, Curtis Sanford, Wade Dubielewicz and Kevin Weekes. That’s nine looking-for-work stoppers and a shrunken market.

Here are the new goaltender jobs this summer:

Boston has top prospect Tuukka Rask as backup. Chicago has Cristobal Huet as starter and top prospect Corey Crawford as backup. Colorado has Craig Anderson as starter and Peter Budaj is relegated to backup. Dallas has Alex Auld as backup. Detroit has prospect Jimmy Howard as backup. Edmonton has Nikolai Khabibulin as starter. Columbus has Mathieu Garon as backup. Florida has Scott Clemmensen as backup. New Jersey has prospect Jeff Frazee as backup. The Islanders have Dwayne Roloson as backup. Ottawa has Brian Elliott as backup. Philadelphia has Ray Emery as starter and Brian Boucher as backup. Phoenix has Jason LaBarbera as backup. Pittsburgh has John Curry as backup. San Jose has Thomas Greiss as backup. St. Louis has Ty Conklin as backup. Tampa Bay has Antero Niittymaki as backup. Toronto has Jonas Gustavsson as backup. Vancouver has Andrew Raycroft as backup.


9 Responses to NHL News and Rumors – Monday July 13, 2009

  1. the_word says:

    Nice to see someone in Detroit actually ask to be paid market value for a change. F Holland.

  2. zackman13 says:

    Christian Erhoff
    2nd Round Pick 2010

    Jason Chimera
    1st Round Pick 2011

  3. mojo19 says:

    uh oh. Someone needs a nap

  4. dcz28 says:

    This article on Hudler was written before the NHL filed a complaint with the KHL and IHF. Holland after that wasn't as sure that Hudler was truly gone and now his hands are tied until it is resolved.

    As for "the word" or whatever his username is…you think 5 million a year (even if it wasn't tax free) is market value for Hudler? You are nuts if you do! Hudler is not worth more than 3 million per season. That is what Filppula makes and Hudler is not better than Filppula…if you think otherwise you don't watch the Wings enough.

  5. Leafmonkey says:

    If another team offered a better deal for pronger why wouldn't they have taken it. that just makes no sense.

  6. the_word says:

    I find this a tad ammusing seeing how last time we discussed Hudler you said you wouldn't trade him straight up for Mats Sundin. Its as if Hudler has upside, last time I checked players routinely get paid based on potential, especially in sports with salary caps.

    He's worth what the market will pay him. Its his right to find the best living for himself. It doesn't matter what you or I think he should be paid.

    Maybe its just me, I'm pro worker.

  7. the_word says:

    Yeah because everyone loves to see players take a hit to perpetuate a meaningless dynsasty in a forgetable market.

    Go Wings!

    God forbid someone doesn't put the Redwings ahead of their livelyhood.

  8. mojo19 says:

    take a nap!

  9. dcz28 says:

    So i didn't want to trade Hudler straight up for a washed up Sundin…still a good deal never made for the Wings. lol

    As for his market value, the Wings have their own salary structure and if players don't want to fit into it they can go elsewhere. Fillpula is a way better two way player than Hudler and has more upside than him…Filppula makes 3 million per season for another 3 or 4 years. Wings offered Hudler a more than decent deal at 3 million per season for his choice of 3 to 5 years. He refused and the Russians offered him more than any NHL team would to make sure the Wings didn't match just like the Bruins did with Lapointe a long time ago. 5 million (tax free) a year is not market value for Hudler…not even close and i don't blame Hudler for wanting it as he would never get that kind of offer at this point in his career.

    I didn't have a problem with the Wings moving on as the Wings tried giving Hudler top 2 line minutes last season and he couldn't produce. He only produces on the 3rd or 4th line with 2nd PP unit minutes and lacks the speed and defense to play top 2 line minutes. He also had only 2 points in the playoffs after being hit by Brown against the Ducks in the 2nd round. Great that Hudler got back up from that hit and came back into the game but he was pretty quiet for the rest of the playoffs.

    I don't hate Hudler for wanting that offer from the KHL and i certainly don't want him on the Wings for over 3 million per season…wish him all the best. I do have a problem with the NHL for complaining to the KHL and IHF tying Holland's hands until this is settled with a player that doesn't want to be in Detroit next season. They should have just let him go and let the Wings move on…by the time this is over now, the Wings probably still won't have Hudler but will have missed out on potential replacements via UFA market.

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