Tons of Rumors – NHL News and Rumor Roundup – June 24, 2009

GM Burke plots Leaf makeover

Roloson no closer to re-signing with Edmonton

Bruins talking it up – Trades, picks in air

Florida Panthers still might get something for free agent-to-be Jay BouwmeesterGM Burke plots Leaf makeover


Brian Burke is about to begin remaking the Toronto Maple Leafs and will use every tool in his arsenal – draft picks, salary

cap space and trades – to build a team that will hit and fight.

“Our goal is to make the playoffs next year, we’re going to have to make some changes to do it,” Burke said yesterday. “We’re

going to be a different team.

“I like a lot of hitting. I like a lot of fighting. We have a passive group. All year long, when a trainer was on the ice –

it was always our trainer– that really bothered me.

“It will be a more hostile group in the fall.”

Burke expects it could take until the moment before the New York Islanders choose first overall before any deal gets

finalized, as had happened before with Burke deals to land Chris Pronger (in Hartford) and the Sedin twins (in Vancouver).

“Teams haven’t said they won’t move the pick,” said Burke. “Most of them have said they don’t like my price. We’ll see how it

goes, we’ll keep banging away at it.”

Burke said he wasn’t going to fall into the trap that had befuddled so many other Leaf GMs – he promised not to trade young

players for veterans. “We’re going to keep the long-term blue print,” said Burke.

At the same time however, he suggested that in order to move up in the draft, he might have to trade draft picks. If he did,

he’d try to reacquire picks immediately.

“I hate trading picks,” said Burke. “Right now, I’m probably in a position where I’ll probably have to do it. But if we trade

picks, I’ll probably try to get some back. I like our scouts to be busy on draft day. They worked hard all year.”

But Friday is important on another matter. The no-trade clauses for both defencemen Tomas Kaberle and Pavel Kubina

temporarily expire. From draft day until mid-August, either can be traded. Burke said he’s had nibbles for both, but said it

was “too early to say” whether one, or both, would be moved.

Kubina earns $5 million (all figures U.S.) a year, Kaberle $4.25 million. Both have offensive ability, Kubina has a bit more


Burke has a fair bit of cap space – about $12 million – with Mikhail Grabovski the only significant unsigned restricted free

agent. Burke expects to be able to use his cap space to help him make trades by acquiring overpriced players.

Florida Panthers still might get something for free agent-to-be Jay Bouwmeester

BRIAN BIGGANE – Palm Beach Post Staff Writer

Philadelphia Flyers General Manager Paul Holmgren took a gamble and won two years ago. He might be willing to roll the dice

again with Panthers defenseman Jay Bouwmeester.

Holmgren has spoken to Panthers assistant general manager Randy Sexton in recent weeks about trading for the rights to

Bouwmeester and then attempting to sign him before he becomes an unrestricted free agent July1 .

Bill Torrey, the Panthers’ alternate governor who is conducting the search for a new general manager, said last week that he

and Sexton were working the phones after all but giving up on the possibility of re-signing Bouwmeester, 25.

“We’re at the point where decisions have to be made and we have to move ahead,” Torrey said.

Holmgren hit paydirt when he made a similar preemptive strike two years ago. Having dealt Peter Forsberg to Nashville at the

trade deadline, he sent the same first-round pick he acquired in that deal back to the Predators for the rights to Scott

Hartnell and Kimmo Timmonen, then signed both players before the deadline.

Those moves proved instrumental as the Flyers went from a league-worst 56 points in 2006-07 to 95 points and a playoff berth

in 2007-08.

If a deal is made for Bouwmeester, it probably will be at or before the NHL Entry Draft being held in Montreal on Friday (7

p.m., Versus) and Saturday.

Speculation in Philadelphia is that the Flyers would be willing to send 25-year-old right winger Joffrey Lupul to Florida in

exchange for Bouwmeester’s rights.

Roloson no closer to re-signing with Edmonton


The clock is running out on Dwayne Roloson and the Edmonton Oilers.

Ales Kotalik isn’t close to a contract, either.

The free agent deadline is fast approaching and the players have only had “brief discussions” with the hockey club, so the

odds of reaching a deal before the free agent market opens in seven days are pretty slim. And they certainly don’t go up

after July 1.

“If you get to July 1 you never know what’s going to happen,” said GM Steve Tambellini. “I guess you never say never, but

it’s probably more difficult (to re-sign either of them). But it’s their right, they’ve earned the right to be free agents as

of July 1.”

The Oilers need a goalie, but are hesitant to lock themselves into a multi-year contract with a netminder who’ll be 40 next

season. Roloson, meanwhile, had a great 2008-09 campaign and feels he’s worth a two- or three-year pact.

Neither side is wrong, it’s just that they might not be the right fit for each other at this point.

“I have to look at immediate needs but I also have to protect the organization going forward with what we think is going to

happen in the next couple of years,” said Tambellini, who has Jeff Deslauriers and Devan Dubnyk waiting in the wings.

“We’ve had discussions with Roli and his agent. There isn’t anything in place at this time. I can’t really give you an update

from Roli’s side, what they’re thinking.”

One way or another, the Oilers will need a veteran presence in the pipes this season. If it’s not Roloson, Tambellini isn’t

going to panic. There are a number of experienced goalies up for grabs in the UFA and trade markets.

“I’m not worried about it, that we don’t have something in place a week from now,” he said. “We’ll have time to make sure we

have a strong goaltending team here by the time we start our season.”

Bruins talking it up – Trades, picks in air

Steve Conroy

The NHL amateur draft begins Friday night, but Bruins general manager Peter Chiarelli said yesterday he’s smelling a lot of

trade smoke in Montreal.

Whether it turns into fire remains to be seen.

With Dany Heatley begging out of Ottawa and the B’s Phil Kessel a possible salary cap casualty, there certainly are enough

things for GMs to be chattering on about.

“Based on what I’m hearing and the general conversations I’ve been having, there seems to be more significant players out

there, so activity prior to an actual trade has probably increased,” said Chiarelli, in Montreal for pre-draft meetings. “I

don’t know if there’ll be any more trades in what we’ve seen in the past. I get the sense that there’s more activity. There

are conversations and discussions. I know the other managers are thinking conservatively like myself and before you can take

on something, you have to really think twice about it.”

Chiarelli did not comment on negotiations with impending restricted free agent Kessel, nor did he say outright he was

shopping the 21-year-old sniper. But it’s a safe bet Kessel’s name has come up.

It will be difficult for Chiarelli, who has approximately $5 million to $6 million to spend on RFAs Kessel, Matt Hunwick and

Byron Bitz, to fit Kessel under the cap. But it might be even more difficult for Chiarelli to get fair value in return.

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4 Responses to Tons of Rumors – NHL News and Rumor Roundup – June 24, 2009

  1. mojo19 says:

    You heard Burke. Derek Boogaard is practically a Leaf! Woohoo

  2. KingCanada says:

    That guy is a monster!!  There are so many goons available come July 1st its ridiculous!

    Andrew Peters
    Colton Orr
    David Koci
    Brian McGratton

    Boogaard unfortinatly is still inked in Minnesota…

    I really hope we get a player like Travis Moen or Sammy Pahlsson tho!!  They fit the mold of Burke's past teams and are both UFAs so hopefully Burke makes a pitch for one if not both their services!

  3. honestabe says:

    Maybe he'll offer up that 7th overall pick for Antopov.

    hahahahahah,  sorry I just couldn't resist.

  4. Elite_Destruction says:

    I was just going to say that lol, i would love to see the Boogy man in a Leafs jersey other players i could see Burke going after to add toughness is Colton Orr, Travis Moen, and Francois Beauchemin, maybe not Beauchemin if he is asking to much but the other 2 i could see forsure, deff Moen :). All 3 are pretty young to so thats a bonus 🙂

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