Rumos from the Edmonton Journal

Kovalchuk trade bait?

Whitney could move
Jim Matheson, Edmonton Journal

Kovalchuk trade bait?

Is Ilya Kovalchuk, who has 323 goals but is minus-86 in his Atlanta career, a better trade rental than Marian Hossa was in 2008 when Pittsburgh got him and got to Game 7 of the Stanley Cup final? I don’t think so. I may be in the minority, but I think Hossa is a better player (he actually can check) and, in his prime all he fetched was centre Erik Christensen, winger Colby Armstrong, suspect draft pick Angelo Esposito and a 2008 first-round draft pick -stocking stuffers really, although Hossa was 29, and Kovalchuk is only 26, so maybe he’d be worth more.

I still think the Boston Bruins are the short-term destination, although they don’t have long-term cap room, because Marc Savard and Kovalchuk have a history from Atlanta, and the Bruins can give up Blake Wheeler, their first-round pick (not the one they got from Toronto for Phil Kessel) and, say, centre Joe Colborne, who is a sophomore at University of Denver.

Kovalchuk, who isn’t in Alex Ovechkin’s league as a guy who scores, hits and leads, wants more from the Thrashers than Ovechkin’s $9.5-million cap hit. If the Thrasher pay him $10 million to $10.5 million over 10 years, he’s happy, but Atlanta has no inclination to be anywhere near a cap ceiling team as Washington is, so how can they build around him if they have no money left? Answer: They can’t.

Whitney could move

I’d be willing to bet $20 that Carolina Hurricanes winger Ray Whitney, who will be an unrestricted free agent on July 1, will wind up in Pittsburgh, playing with either Sidney Crosby or Evgeni Malkin, at the deadline. In 2006, the Penguins sent Mark Recchi to Carolina for two prospects and a second-round draft when he was 38, and he helped the Hurricanes win a Cup. Maybe there could be some reciprocity?

44 Responses to Rumos from the Edmonton Journal

  1. leafstime says:

    I've got a new trade proposal to get Kovalchuk on the Leafs.

    Schenn, Poni, Stajan and Exelby for Kovalchuk.

    Atlanta gets Schenn. Incredible young defence player. Scoring skill with Poni and Stajan. Exelby's strong physical play.

    Fair trade for all sides. Do it now.

  2. honestabe says:

    I know this has nothing to do with trade rumours, but does anyone have any thoughts on Cormier hit?

  3. leafmeister says:

    Bold Prediction: On July 1st, Edmonton offers Kovalchuk 15 million dollars a year, and the C, but he takes 10 in LA instead.

    Now tell me you couldnt picture that happening.

  4. leafmeister says:

    A 20 year old, future #2,3 defensemen, two third liners and a #7 defensemen for a franchise goal scorer.

    Does that really sound fair?

  5. bbruins37 says:

    with this economy i expect the cap to go up 20 million too.

  6. bbruins37 says:

    yeah i commented on it on another topic. absolutely disgusting. i hope he's kicked out of the Q and his career suffers greatly. its crazy that he was the captain of canada

  7. honestabe says:

    Do you think the leafs can afford Kovalchuk given his demand for $10M.?
    Kessel, Hagman, Blake, Grabovski, Komisarek, Beauchemin, Kaberle, Finger, plus add in Kovalchuk for $10M and that's $41M for 9 players.  And you still don't have a goalie.

  8. reinjosh says:

    too bad they can only offer him about a max of 11.6 million
    the cap only allows a player to have a salary that is at the absolute max, 20 percent of a teams payroll
    and something tells me that now team is going to offer this guy Ovechkin money

  9. hockey_lover says:

    Someone will offer him at LEAST $8.5 a year, likely closer to $9.

    If guys like Staal (8.25mil) and Richards (7.8) can get that much, Kovalchuck will get more. Guaranteed.

  10. KingCanada says:

    Your stupid.

  11. leafstime says:

    Why what's wrong with that trade. I don't see any you guys do any better. I have to do all the work around here and then it's not appreciated. That's the thanks I get.

  12. leafy says:

    Horrible hit. Hockey is not what it used to be.

  13. reinjosh says:

    you have not been here very long have you

  14. reinjosh says:

    yeah i can see that
    sorry i should have clarified (and by the way i think richards is worth that 7.8 mil he is just having a bad season)
    i dont think he will get more than 9 million or so

  15. bbruins37 says:

    you actually think richards is worth 7.8? he's the 5th highest paid player in the league. and wasnt the cap like 39 or something when he was signed? thats a max contract.

    as for kovalchuk i think he'll pass 9 for sure, if all the rumours are true about him demanding 100 million and whatnot, he can surely drvie up the price. remember that guys like staal, lecav, crosby, malkin, ovechkin, etc. never hit UFA. all he has to do is pit teams against one another to drive up the price. he'll be the biggest free agent since i dont even know when. this will be bigger than chara and gaborik, and they got 7.5 (when the cap was alot lower in chara's case). drury and gomez got 7+…i definitely think we'll see over 9

  16. KingCanada says:

    HAHAHA that was awesome kid I actually laughed congrats.  Fine…Ill "work" that trade of urs…

    Stajan, Ponikarovski, Exelby are ALL UFAs…u know what UFA means dont u…thats right… they DONT have a contract next year JUST like Kovalchuk…which is the reason he is being shopped around in the first place.

    To a rebuilding team like Atlanta, that means that all 3 of those guys are useless to them since they arent retainable assets.  Retainable assets include prospects, picks, players UNDER CONTRACT or RFAs.

    Essentially the only worthwhile asset in there is Luke Schenn…why??  Because…thats right you guessed it…hes a retainable asset..good job ur catching on arentcha 😉

    Go to those websites and learn about the cap if you dont want us to make fun of u.  This isnt a video game, its real life and its very different.  Its not just about player vs player trades.  Everything has to fit under a cap.  Players are valued by their production vs their cap hit and also the length of the contract.

  17. honestabe says:

    I agree, it was horrible. 
    That said, I'm sure there are lots of Gordie Howe's victims that might dissagree with that statement.  He was pretty bad with his elbows.
    How about the Broadstreet Bullies?
    If the violence was there in the past, what's the difference now? 

    By-the-way, I agree, it was a terrible hit. 

  18. leafy says:

    Yeah I know, but I'm talking about the TYPE of injuries in today's hockey.  We're seeing some horrible head shots and open ice hits at high speed, or truly vicious hits from behind.

    Back in Gordie's time or the Broad Street Bullies, hockey was very violent but not in terms of the horrific injuries you see today. Sometimes through stick work or rough play, but mostly through fighting.

    Think about it, just imagine for a second if the players tomorrow night took off their helmets, but continued to play the exact same way.  Wow!  You'd have players getting killed on a weekly basis.

    Back in the old days, with crappier equipment and without helmets, you seldomly had injuries like today.  There was respect for the head.

    What they've done now is they replaced the fighting with a brand of vicious and reckless hockey.

    And even the fighting now is dangerous. In the old days, you rarely had players hurt in fights. Nowadays they don't even know how to fight.  Why this is I don't know.

    Check out the old ESPN classic games. It's easy to see the difference from today's game.

  19. honestabe says:

    That's a pretty fair comment.
    In those old games, there was allot of hitting but it was different.  Almost like those hits were warnings.   I mean Gordie hit allot of guys with his elbow, but I can't say I ever heard of him putting someone in the hospital with a hit. Just a few chicklets.
    I firmly believe that the changes to the fighting rules have created allot of the problems.  Rather than fight, players are swinging their sticks allot more.  And talking about fighting, what ever happened to the 3rd-man-in rule?  Does that still exist?  Half the fights you see now involve 4-5-6  or more players.
    So, do you think the penaties and suspensions should be more severe?  Is a hit like Cormier, or Kassian better, equal or worse than say, the Bertuzzi, or McSorley?

  20. cam7777 says:

    I think he would take this deal:

    14 years, 112 million

    He would get 11 million in each of the first 10 years, and then 500K for the last 4 years, where he would be free to return to Russia and sign for a ridiculous retirement contract.

    I wonder what Bettman would say if Burke offered him 115 million over 20 years (11 mil the first 10 years, 500K the next ten for a 5.75 cap hit). Could he really do anything after being helpless in the Luongo, Zetterberg, Franzen and Hossa deals?

  21. cam7777 says:

    Does anyone think that the Islanders would do this trade with the Leafs in summer (or before):

    To NYI: Mikhail Grabovski
    To TOR: Blake Kessel, Anders Nilsson, 4th in 2010/2011

    Kessel is Kessel's younger brother (a six foot 1, 210 pound defensemen), who was drafted in the 6th round in 2007.  Anders Nilsson is a goalie from the most recent draft year.  He is six foot five and 220 pounds, which would be ideal for Allaire's coaching.  With Hamonic and De Haan looking like the future on D, the Islanders can definitely afford this trade.  Grabovski would be a nice, young replacement for Doug "the Dinosaur" Weight.

    Of course, I think the biggest part of this deal is the cap space to the Leafs.  If we could find a taker for Blake (say the Blake for Koistinen deal that is often mentioned on this site), and then dump Finger in the minors, we will have created 10.4 million in cap space.  Add that to Ponikarovsky, Stajan, Stempniak, Toskala, Mayers, VanRyn, Exelby and Wallin all hitting the road next year, and we roll into summer with this roster:

    Viktor Stalberg – Tyler Bozak – Phil Kessel
    Niklas Hagman – Nikolai Kulemion (resigned 2 years, 3.5 million)
    Colton Orr

    Tomas Kaberle – Luke Schenn
    Francois Beauchemin – Ian White (resigned, 4 years, 12 million)
    Mike Komisarek – Carl Gunnarsson

    Jonas Gustavsson (resigned, 2 years, 3.65 million)

    That leaves almost exactly 20 million to flesh out the roster….


  22. bbruins37 says:

    no mention of peca retiring? one of the best defensive players of his generation, won the gold with canada. solid career

  23. bbruins37 says:

    im pretty sure the nhl will do something about these retirement deals soon enough. if kovalchuk gets one of these, then i wouldnt expect the cap hit to be over 9, but if it isnt one of those deals, id definitely expect it to be over 9.

  24. bbruins37 says:

    i wouldnt say that those incidents were as bad as bertuzzi, mcsorley, but it really isnt too far off. i mean, it was clearly an attempt to injure tam.

    they shouldnt be looking at the nhl for precedent though. they have their precedent in limbas (albeit, cormier is in the QMJHL where as liambas was in the ohl; kassian was in the ohl though). they gave liambas a ridiculous year long suspension on a hit that i would have questioned the league suspending him for a number of games even in the double digits. they set the bar ridiculously high with liambas, so if they dont follow through with these two (with both of these incidents being much worse IMO, and especially cormier's hit), there are definitely going to be questions raised if theres a double-standard in the CHL for star players now too.

  25. honestabe says:

    not to nit-pick, but there is something in the CBA about how a players salary can't change from year to year by more than half of the highest years salary.  Or something like that.   So he'd be 11M for the first 10 years, then 5.5M, then 500K.  or something like that…

  26. dizon says:

    do you think he will be HOF?

    he's got 2 selkes, a world junior championship and a gold medal under his belt, but something tells me he wont make HOF
  27. honestabe says:

    Does that mean that the leafs top line would be
    Kessel – Kovalchuk – Kadri.  ?

  28. honestabe says:

    Never a big fan of his. 
    Carbonneau was far better…… 

  29. TheLeafNation91 says:

    More like

    Kessel-Kadri-Kovalchuk…If it were to happen

  30. the_word says:

    Hagman and Schenn for Bobby Ryan? Would gives us top notch wingers to balance the top six, with Kadri coming up we'd only need another center (overpay on Marleau?) to round up pairings on our top six. Without having to sweat Schenn's raise we'd still have cash to extend Kaberle.

  31. K-Mill says:

    Matt Donovan from NYI to NYR for Bobby Sanguinetti??

  32. cam7777 says:

    I figure if we actually manage to trade Grabo and Blake in the aforementioned deals, then I would go into summer looking to make two deals.  First, Kaberle needs to be dealt either at the deadline or in summer for a top six forward and a 1st round pick, or some combination of what we need.  So, then we roll into summer and around the draft put the word out that we are looking for a center, and we are willing to offer Hagman, Mitchell, and whatever we got from dealing Poni and Stajan (presumably two 2nd round picks).  Now that's a pretty substantial package.  An example would be something like this:

    To SJS: Kaberle, Oreskovic, 3rd in 2010
    To TOR: Setoguchi, 1st in 2010, 2nd in 2011

    To PIT: Hagman, Mitchell, 2nd in 2010, 2nd in 2010
    To TOR: J.Staal

    So our lines would look something like this:

    Ilya Kovlachuk – Jordan Staal – Phil Kessel
    Nikolai Kulemin – Nazem Kadri – Devin Setoguchi
    Viktor Stalberg – Tyler Bozak – Christian Hanson
    ____UFA______ – Wayne Primeau – ____UFA______

    (Colton Orr)

    Francois Beauchemin – Ian White
    Mike Komisarek – ____UFA_______
    Carl Gunnarsson – Luke Schenn

    Jonas Gustavsson – _____UFA_________

    Now we've got four holes left to fill in free agency:

    -Colby Armstrong, 4 years, 8 million
    -Taylor Pyatt, 2 years, 1.7 million
    -Adrian Aucoin, 1 year, 2.75 million
    -Dan Ellis, 2 years, 4 million

    And it all fits under the cap rather neatly (assuming you waive Finger and Koistinen to the minors).  Kadri isn't ready for top line duties, even alongside Kessel and Kovalchuk.

  33. cam7777 says:

    Then you just increase the length of the contract.  THe point is, I think the NHL is helpless to stop these deals until they actually sit down and correct the CBA at the next negotiation.  How can Bettman say anything to Burke when he's allowed Detroit, Vancouver, Chicago and others to run with these absurd deals.  I don't think he can.

    The only one he's managed to stop was the Philadelphia, Pronger contract, which the Flyers are now stuck paying, even if Pronger retires, since it was ruled that the contract doesn't begin until after he's 35, and that's what really matters.

  34. honestabe says:

    you'll need a nickname for that line.

  35. honestabe says:

    I suspect that pronger deal might come back to haunt them. 
    What happens if in a few years he goes on LTIR?  Does he still count against the cap?  Does philly get cap relief?  If so that might be the way out.  When its time for him to retire they fake an injury and put him on permanent LTIR. 
    Its funny, because no matter how hard the NHL tries, there's always someone that's going to find a way to get around the rules.  The GM's are their own worst enemies.

  36. cam7777 says:

    Well, they could buy him out pretty inexpensively, but that would just be kind of insulting to one of the games greatest defensemen.  If he suspects that's coming, my guess is he would retire before they get the chance, in which case, they would be stuck with the full 5 million dollar cap hit until Pronger is 43.

    But yea, there are ways around it, like faking an injury.  That's a pretty tough road though as the punishments would be prety severe if they were found out.  And it would be pretty obvious, so a full scale investigation from Bettman wouldn't be out the question.  I think they are just stuck with Pronger's deal, I think…

  37. broc says:

    Giving too much for Ryan IMO. Hagman is a valuable asset himself, and cheaply paid. Schenn is, well, Schenn.

    I'd be willing to add to either of these guys towards Ryan, but not give both unless a good asset was coming back with Ryan.

  38. KingCanada says:

    We'll only be able to wear our blue uniforms in that case lol.

  39. bbruins37 says:

    oh i definitely dont think he's HOF worthy. he just had a really solid career.

  40. the_word says:

    I agree it is absolutely overpaying however is a garuntee of getting the deal done.

  41. reinjosh says:

    the KAssian hit isnt that bad
    no worse than the Richards on Booth hit

  42. honestabe says:

    20 games for Kassian!!!!

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