Category Archives: HTR Feature Article

Acquiring Simon Gagne an intriguing thought for Tampa Bay Lightning

The Lightning has interest in acquiring Flyers left wing Simon Gagne. It is difficult to tell the level of interest because no one with the organization has commented publicly, but it would be naive to believe otherwise.

Why wouldn’t Tampa Bay inquire about a proven goals and points producer being shopped by a team desperate to clear cap space?

Ducks interestred in Kevin Bieksa?

• Why hasn’t first-line Ducks winger Bobby Ryan accepted the Ducks’ five-year, $25 million offer?

Ryan already has said he’s not worth more than linemates Ryan Getzlaf and Corey Perry, both of whom earn an average of $5.3 million a year, so what’s the hold-up?

Is Ryan’s agent trying get another team to make a bigger offer to the restricted free agent, forcing the Ducks to match? My guess is Ryan believes he’ll be worth more than $5 million in the final years of the contract, so he would prefer to sign for, say, only three years.

Kings, Maple Leafs and Rangers are believed to have expressed interest in Gagne

The only NHL team currently operating above the NHL salary cap, the Flyers have until the start of the regular season on Oct. 7 to trim their payroll to $59.4 million. They are believed to be in trade talks with a handful of NHL teams interested in Gagne, who has one year and $5.25 million remaining on his contract.

Devils' talks with Ilya Kovalchuk turn cold as deal with L.A. Kings heats u

During one of the snowstorms that blanketed New Jersey last winter, Russian-born Ilya Kovalchuk said it didn’t faze him in the least.

Nevertheless, the 27-year-old left winger seemingly prefers the southern California weather and maybe a beach house in Malibu.

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.

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.”

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.

Leafs empty up the middle

Small piece by small piece, Brian Burke’s Maple Leafs are getting better.

But for every Kris Versteeg and Colby Armstrong the Leafs add, what becomes more apparent is just how weak this team is at centre, the most important position on a hockey club, other than goaltender.

Who won the last three Stanley Cups?

Islanders GM Garth Snow in discussions with agent of perennial 40-goal scorer Il

An NHL source confirmed Friday night that Islanders GM Garth Snow has held discussions with the agent for perennial 40-goal scorer Ilya Kovalchuk, the top unrestricted free agent on the market following a midseason trade to the Devils last season.

Savard to Calgary? Blues looking at trade options

Savard to CGY for Regher

Blues looking outside for defensive help?

Brian Burke ready to make moves as free agency opens

The Maple Leafs will be front and centre on Thursday when free agency opens up.

“We will be active,” said GM Brian Burke. “I expect plenty of activity despite a shrinking talent pool.”

But who will be a Leaf? If he lasts until then, no question Burke would love to land defenceman Dan Hamhuis, giving him the freedom to deal a blue-liner or two for a top-six forward.

Savard in play, but he may not be a GM’s go-to guy

If you believe various NHL types, the chase for Marc Savard will feature as much speed as the slow-motion O.J. Simpson-Ford Bronco caper.

However, there are indications Toronto Maple Leafs general manager Brian Burke may get some competition for the Boston Bruins centre, even though Burke has yet to dive in with all guns blazing, à la his pursuit a year ago for Savard’s former linemate, Phil Kessel. Calgary Flames GM Darryl Sutter might be looking to reunite Savard with another of his ex-wingers, Jarome Iginla, now that he decided to close out the Ollie Jokinen disaster with a buyout of winger Ales Kotalik.

LEAFS GM BURKE HAS TRADE OPTIONS – NONE INVOLVING SAVARD

If the Toronto Maple Leafs are interested in acquiring centre Marc Savard from the Boston Bruins, Brian Burke isn’t saying anything about it.

The Leafs’ President and general manager told Toronto’s Fan 590 radio station on Monday that while he’s exploring other options to acquire players, the Bruins’ No. 1 centre was not on the radar.

Mikhail Grabovski or Nikolai Kulemin Package for Savard?

Given that he is a central character in the latest blast in hockey’s silly season, surely Brian Burke is well aware of the suggestion that Marc Savard is being touted as the potential answer to his team’s offensive woes.

The Maple Leafs general manager won’t knock the Boston Bruins’ playmaker and certainly he must recognize the offensive talent the elite centre brings.

Free agency talk heats up at draft weekend

The focus of the hockey world was in Los Angeles this weekend, and it may yet again come on Thursday when the NHL’s free-agent market opens.

Sources confirmed to ESPN.com yet again on Saturday that the Kings will make an offer to the prized jewel of a thin market, star winger Ilya Kovalchuk. They tried to acquire his rights this weekend from New Jersey, but were denied since the Devils remain interested in trying to re-sign the Russian star.

On the back end, Los Angeles also has eyes on a top-four defenseman, and if Dan Hamhuis doesn’t sign with the Pittsburgh Penguins, the Kings will take a look at him. The Kings also like Maple Leafs defenseman Tomas Kaberle, but don’t have a fit with Toronto because the Leafs want a top-six forward in return (there were rumblings of Toronto being interested in Stars center Mike Ribeiro). That doesn’t make sense for a Kings team looking to add a top-six forward, not get rid of one.

Either way, expect the Kings to be in the thick of things come Thursday as the team attempts to add the final pieces to a rising Western Conference powerhouse.

Late Night Rumors – June 26, 2010

Could the Flames swing a deal for Spezza?

Flyers Complete Verbal Deal for Nabokov

Leafs get Kaberle offers

Draft Day – Tons of Rumors


1. Trade rumors find Carter once again

2. Wild GM keeping his options open for trades, draft

3. Source: Savard, Thomas on trade block

4. Oilers fishing for another Round 1 pick

5. Who will Hawks move next?

Latenight Rumors – Kaberle, Draft news, Blue Jackets, Pre-draft rumors


1. Here’s just a few more things from the Draft:

2. Columbus looking to trade their 4th overall pick

3. NHL roundup, pre-draft

4. Pierre LeBrun from twitter- Buffalo interested in Kaberle

NHL trade talks in high gear

There is plenty of talk as the hockey world gathers for Friday’s NHL draft.

After kicking off the week by dealing Dennis Wideman and the No. 15 pick to the Florida Panthers for Nathan Horton and Gregory Campbell , Boston GM Peter Chiarelli predicts more action.

“In the last two weeks, there have been a lot more conversations and the guys I’ve spoken with say they’ve seen a lot of increased activity,” said Chiarelli Wednesday.

Kaberle trade talk heats up

Leafs say, ‘Let the bidding begin’

Think of it in terms of real estate. Your house is your most valuable asset, one that is appreciating nicely as the market heats up.

You are days away from accepting offers and the bidders are motivated.

You never were going to give the property away, but suddenly you may have found yourself in a sellers’ market and maybe — just maybe — value is on your side.

Leafs GM Brian Burke is a vendor at heart, a man who has shown throughout his career in NHL management that he lives for the big deal. And even with a modest portfolio to work with, he’s ready to make his latest splash.

His no-movement clause doesn’t vanish until Friday evening, but the Tomas Kaberle open-house is well underway.

  • ructation