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The New York Islanders are in the midst of a terrible season and are currently dealing with an eight-game losing streak. That is likely making head coach Jack Capuano’s seat quite toasty. According to Chris Botta of Sports Business Journal, if the Isles were to make a move, Peter Laviolette would be a top candidate to replace Capuano.
A savvy, rangy defenseman is getting closer on the Detroit Red Wings’ horizon, which will afford an opportunity to change the landscape.
Danny DeKeyser is starting a comeback from a separated shoulder suffered Nov. 21, taking to the ice daily and increasing what he does. Realistically, he’s still about two weeks away, but when he is ready, he’ll need to be removed from long-term injured reserve. Right now, that can’t be done without something else happening.
I don't know if something's coming in the immediate future, but Montreal and Columbus have been talking trade for a number of weeks
— Eric Engels (@EricEngels) December 5, 2013
By virtue of the title, trade rumors usually turn into soap operas.
When it comes to the rumors surrounding the Carolina Hurricanes recently, it has been a complete farce. Every report seems to indicate the Hurricanes throwing players at whatever team happens to answer the phone and getting hung up on. There’s the Tim Gleason for John-Michael Liles rumors that have been going on for weeks now. In addition, there’s rumors with Tuomo Ruutu and Jiri Tlusty.
I can tell you with a great deal of authority that the Senators were pursuing a trade with the Flyers near the deadline that would have seen Ben Bishop traded to Philadelphia for Sean Couturier. That was the Senators first option and it looked like it may happen right up until 12 noon on deadline day. The Flyers had even claimed centre Adam Hall off waivers right around the deadline, making the Sens believe they were ready to part with Couturier under the right circumstances.
According to ace Rogers Sportsnet reporter/podcast host Jeff Marek they are.
Marek, one of the hockey media people I respect a lot, said on the air that his sources are telling him the Avs have interest in Florida Panthers defenseman Dmitry Kulikov, the 14th overall pick by Florida in 2009 – 11 spots behind Matt Duchene.
In the past week or so, Snow has watched Thomas Vanek strike a strong chemistry with John Tavares and Kyle Okposo on the Isles’ top line, which must have been exactly what he envisioned when he sent Matt Moulson, plus first- and second-round draft picks to the Buffalo Sabres on Oct. 27 in exchange for the Austrian sniper. But as the losses mount on Long Island, we can’t help but wonder if watching Vanek and Co. go to work on opposition goalies is only serving to remind Snow what his team’s biggest need is—and was all along—somebody who can stop the puck.
Edmonton Oilers general manager Craig MacTavish was on his cellphone while his team was skating Thursday morning, and while it could have been his wife telling her hubby to stop for a loaf of bread on the way home, it may have been another GM talking about defencemen.
Certainly, the Oilers could use an NHL veteran back there.
Given his team’s 2-10-2 skid, there’s room to add just about anywhere, but here are a few names that have been mentioned around the league as trade bait and where, based on conversations with several people across the NHL, the Isles might stand in trade talks:
One NHL scout in attendance Tuesday night told CSNWashington.com that teams might shy away from Erat because he’s made two trade requests in less than eight months.
“And he didn’t keep it in-house,” the scout said. “That doesn’t look good on him.”
Dreger "he's a solid def forward who has been slotted in that role. There is always trade interest in Kulemin & he'll be an attractive UFA"
— Hope_Smoke (@Hope_Smoke) December 4, 2013
“The Canadiens have been scouting the Avs all year long,” writes Adrain Dater of the Denver Post. “While I don’t believe something ‘major’ is imminent, I do believe Montreal has targeted the Avs for a while now for something. It could be as little as trying to get John Mitchell, or something as big as a package involving Paul Stastny.”
Steve Ott is the only impending unrestricted free agent in the Buffalo Sabres dressing room willing to emphatically state that he’s prepared to wait out the rebuild. Yet the captain has no idea if he’ll be given that chance. “We had some negotiating going back and forth and (former GM) Darcy Regier kind of pulled the plug and said he was going to wait until training camp,” says Ott of some summer discussions. “Then training camp came and nothing was said.”
I mentioned last week that the Vancouver Canucks had a conversation with the Washington Capitals about Martin Erat — who has asked for a trade — but the Canucks after some thought decided to pass. Ditto for the Ottawa Senators, who initially showed a bit of interest but ultimately decided Erat wasn’t a fit. …
Kypreos and Friedman think the Leafs are willing to move Gardiner to bring in a center. Both "how could you not?"
— Hope_Smoke (@Hope_Smoke) December 3, 2013
Bob McKenzie: Florida Panthers defenceman Dmitri Kulikov has been available for most of this year but the Panthers are kicking it up, very aggressively shopping him, and trying to get an auction going for a 23-year-old defenceman who was picked 14th overall in the 2008 draft. Kulikov though has two knocks against him. One, he hasn’t been developing and playing particularly well for Florida and two, he’s a restricted free agent at the end of the year and there are fears that because he has the KHL option as a Russian, he might go back there instead of playing in the NHL.
— Farhan Lalji (@FarhanLaljiTSN) December 4, 2013
David Clarkson saw red on Monday, but would not let any anger at a possible line change spew to the surface.
When the Maple Leafs emerged from a hard-to-watch video session preceding their first practice after four straight losses, the pricey winger was wearing the rouge of a checking line, with Carter Ashton and Trevor Smith. Nikolai Kulemin had switched positions with Clarkson on the second line with centre Nazem Kadri and Mason Raymond.
There were plenty of scouts and NHL front-office personnel at the Garden on Monday night taking in the Rangers’ 5-2 loss to the Winnipeg Jets, including Bruins GM Peter Chiarelli, Flyers assistant GM Ron Hextall and two representatives from the Ottawa Senators.
Close to returning. Canes getting trade interest in both him & Peters. MT @NHLCanes Khudobin will travel with the team this week.
— Craig Custance (@CraigCustance) December 2, 2013