Trade Rumors and Speculation for July 12th

Chicago’s mistakes could cost big next year

Why Tanguay is still on the market, the latest on Heatley and what’s next for Tavares

Catching up with Zubov, RichardsChicago’s mistakes could cost big next year

Larry Brooks

Chicago GM Dale Tallon’s blunder in not getting qualifying offers to his restricted free agents in the timely manner mandated by the CBA, however, is likely to mortally wound the Blackhawks next summer. That’s when they’re going to have to re-sign Group II linchpins Patrick Kane, Jonathan Toews and Duncan Keith.

That’s because — in being forced to give Cam Barker and Kris Versteeg multi-year contracts of nearly $3.1 million per season in order to keep them from being declared unrestricted free agents as a result of management’s negligence — the Blackhawks will not have enough space to remain intact while accommodating Kane, Toews and Keith.

Why Tanguay is still on the market

Pierre LeBrun

There’s a point-a-game player left on the NHL’s free-agency market, but his camp will be patient before making a decision now that the first and second wave of signings have passed.

Alex Tanguay is an immensely talented forward looking for a new home after spending a season in Montreal. He had 41 points (16-25) in 50 games with the Canadiens last season while earning $5.375 million, his season marred by a shoulder injury.

“We’re talking to several teams,” Tanguay’s veteran agent, former NHL goalie Bob Sauve, told in French on Friday. “Lots of teams have expressed interest. We’ve had a few offers, but not yet something that we want to firm up.

“We’re going to take our time,” added Sauve. “We’re going to wait, not only in terms of money, but also in terms of fit.”

Sauve also confirmed the Canadiens were out of the picture. GM Bob Gainey filled up his high-end forward spots with Scott Gomez, Brian Gionta and Mike Cammalleri.

“We never heard back from the Canadiens,” Sauve said. “Bob told us if we were going to talk again, it would probably be after July 1. Since then, we haven’t heard from them, so we moved on.”

Catching up with Zubov, Richards

Mike Heika/Reporter

A lot of you have asked for clarification on Sergei Zubov.

The way I read it is this: The Stars would like to talk to him in a month or so when they can get a better idea of how healthy he is.

Zubov had major hip surgery last season and had sports hernia surgery the year before that, and as far as I can tell, he still hasn’t proved to the Stars that he’s ready to go. Doctors believe he will be ready to go, but it still is a risk to sign him at this point (and I would think the Stars understand his medical situation better than anyone).

The Stars let Zubov know this is how they feel, and Zubov is taking advantage of his free agent status right now. In talking to Zubov’s agent, he’s definitely open to staying in Dallas, but he’d also like to get a new deal done someplace. There are several teams interested in signing Zubov, but I wonder if they have the same questions on his health. Maybe that’s why this is taking some time.

Could he sign somewhere else if a team wants to take a chance on him? Yes, I think he definitely would.

The offer I think he would get from the Stars in a month would probably be the same offer Jere Lehtinen received ($1.5 million base and $1 million in incentives). Because of that, I think it’s fair to speculate he will sign someplace else.

As for the Brad Richards talk, that is all coming from New York.