Trade Rumors around the NHL

With all of the rumors going around as we get closer to the deadline I have compiled some rumors from various sources to present them in one article – team by team.

Buffalo Sabres

One interesting thing to think about now is that with the latest trade of Vaclav Varada by the Sabres – Will the Sabres start dealing now, or was that an isolated trade? Of course the big question on everyone’s mind now is — Will the sabres deal Satan and Zhitnik before the deadline? Would the NHL let them make that trade to begin with. The trade of Varada doesn’t answer any questions, but it certainly fuels speculation.

Phoenix Coyotes

According to CBS sportsline.com, reports out of PHX are that virtually the entire team is available – however the big names are Numminen and Burke. The Sens were rumored to be after Brad May, but with the recent acquisition of Varada that rumor is shot down. Detroit is rumored to be very interested in getting Numminen, but has said that the Yotes are asking too much (Datsyuk or Zetterberg). Not to mention that Teppo would have to waive his no trade clause. The Blues have showed interest in Burke, but again the Yotes are asking too much. They are looking at rookie-star Barrett Jackman, Justin Papineau and a draft pick.

In my personal opinion PHX could do no wrong by trying to move Tony Amonte to a playoff team in return for 2 or 3 solid NHL caliber players. Amonte is getting older and is at the point now, where in my opinion, can no longer be called upon to carry a team. Amonte is now the type of player that needs to have some support around him on order to be successful. My call – look for Amonte to be moved come deadline time if the price is right.

Chicago Blackhawks

Theo was a healthy scratch again last night….could this be a prelude to a trade. If so, what could they expect in return and, most of all, who would be willing to take on the NHL’s preeminenet problem child? Also look for Chicago to move perennial underacheiver Sergei Berezin too.

Philadelphia Flyers

The Flyers have been mentioned in almost every trade rumor out there – Iginla, Nolan, Satan, Zhitnik, Schneider…etc. I am now going to focus on the one thing I think will clinch the Flyers decision about whether or not to trade for a big name scorer and that is John LeClair. Reported today in the Philly Inquirer, LeClair is not as far along as previously thought and has once again failed to be cleared for contact. Hitchcock was however quoted as saying that LeClair is skating very well at practice and in good condition. Bottom line…if the Flyers cannot bank on LeClair coming back they will make a move.

Montreal Canadiens

Just recalled Audette from the minors. Are they showcasing him a little in hopes of a deadline deal, or are they just filling a vacancy? What about Brisbois….what to do with an unhappy $4Mil per year defenseman. He will be tough to unload. I think the Habs will pull aminir deal at best before the deadline with names possible involved to be Audette, Czerkawski and Brisebois.

LA Kings

There have been a number of rumors associated with the King, none more compelling than Ziggy Palffy. Look for him to be moved before the deadline when the King finally notice that they are dead in the water. Other notables are Matt Schneider, who has been quoted as saying that he would welcome a trade to Toronto – who just happen to be looking for D. According to Spector’s Rumors and the LA daily News, the Kings are rumored to bin interested in reacquiring Luc Robitaille…….my only answer to that is WHY???? The only reason could be for him to retire as a King after having played for them for so many years.

St Louis Blues

With Johnson hurt Tuesday the Blues recalled Sanford. Looks like the Blues are goingto have to make a deal for a netminder. Irbe can be had a bargain basement prices, but is he still a number one goalie? Or will the Blues have to sacrifice in order to get Burke?

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From CBS Sportsline.com – team by team.

Anaheim Mighty Ducks

The Mighty Ducks, looking to add some toughness up front in anticipation of their first playoff appearance in four years, are said to be taking a look at forward Gino Odjick, who was released last week by Montreal after an injury-filled season.

Boston Bruins

Boston has been one of hockey’s worst teams since early December, prompting speculation that coach Robbie Ftorek is on thin ice. The speculation is that if Ftorek is fired, the Bruins will turn to either Larry Robinson, who took over from Ftorek late in the 1999-2000 season and led New Jersey to the Stanley Cup, or interestingly, to Ray Bourque.

Calgary Flames

According to the New York Post, the Colorado Avalanche are making a very serious pitch for Jarome Iginla. Other Calgary players drawing a lot of interest these days are center Craig Conroy and defenseman Bob Boughner.

MY NOTE: With Tanguay playing like a man posessed it would make sense to me to move him now while his value is high. Tanguay has always been streaky – best to sell high. Colorado looks like they are one of the few teams who can give Button his 3 NHL caliber players and not destroy their team. If they go for Iginla look for Tanguay to be part of that deal.

Carolina Hurricanes

The ‘Canes have convinced defenseman Glen Wesley to waive his no-trade clause, which means the pending unrestricted free agent should end up being rented by a contender pretty soon. The Maple Leafs, Red Wings and Tampa Bay Lightning are all interested.

MY PREDICTION: Wesley to the Red Wings.

Colorado Avalanche

The Denver Post says the Avs are interested in Buffalo center Chris Gratton.

Columbus Blue Jackets

Reports around the league say a number of teams, including the Canucks and the Islanders, have contacted the Blue Jackets about veteran left wing Geoff Sanderson. Columbus has two other players, center Andrew Cassels and left wing Ray Whitney drawing interest from teams looking to add some offense.

Florida Panthers

Sources inside the Florida Panthers say the relationship between coach Mike Keenan and GM Rick Dudley is very strained, which is why rumors that Keenan will leave to take over as coach of the New York Rangers next season won’t go away.

New Jersey Devils

The New York Post says Devils GM Lou Lamoriello wants to add a goal scorer to his lineup and is increasing his efforts to land either Ziggy Palffy of the Kings or Teemu Selanne of San Jose. Both teams want Scott Gomez as part of the return package.

Pittsburgh Penguins

Rumors out of Pittsburgh suggest than speedy forward Martin Straka and his $4 million contact could be the next salary dumped by the team. The Flyers, Wild, Avs and Red Wings are thought to be interested.

San Jose Sharks

According to the Toronto Star, the Sharks have modified their asking price from Toronto for Owen Nolan. The newspaper says the Maple Leafs could get San Jose’s captain for Alyn McCauley, prospect Brad Boyes and a first-round draft choice. The Flyers are also interested in Nolan, but won’t part with Justin Williams.

MY NOTE: Let’s not forget that Quinn wanted to draft Nolan but had the second pick and took Nedved only after the Nordiques took Nolan at number one. I think Nolan will end up in Toronto if anywhere. I wouldn’t even be surprised if Marchment was in that package too. One stop shopping for Quinn.

Tampa Bay Lightning

The St. Petersburg Times says Lightning GM Jay Feaster is not opposed to renting a potential free agent defenseman. Among the players being looked at by Tampa Bay are Aaron Miller of the Kings, Buffalo’s Alexei Zhitnik and Carolina’s Glen Wesley.