- Bruce Garrioch of the Ottawa Sun: Senators scouting meetings ended yesterday, draft and trade deadline lists have been created. The Senators are able to rent a top a top-six forward, but there may not be a lot available. Only the Sabres and maybe the Panthers are out of the race in the East. In the West, the Oilers and Flames will be sellers.
“You’re going to have a lot of teams all going after the same players and that will make the asking prices high,” said a league executive Wednesday.
Trade options for the Senators: The Sens do have interest in Matt Moulson, with the asking price believed to be a 1st and a prospect. The Rangers would like to re-sign Ryan Callahan, but he may be available. The Sens have always liked Ales Hemsky’s game, but not his salary. Sabres Drew Stafford wouldn’t be a rental as he has a $4 million cap hit through next season. Tuomo Ruutu has been available all year, and the Blue Jackets could also be interested in him.
- Jeremy Rutherford of the St. Louis Post-Dispatch: The Blues recent struggles have led to more speculation whether they need to upgrade on Jaroslav Halak and Brian Elliott. Do they go with Jake Allenfrom within (16-10-2 with a 2.14 GAA) or the trade route?
“We know that we have very good players in the American Hockey League, whether it’s Allen or (Dmitrij) Jaskin and (Chris) Porter,” Armstrong said. “But I think right now, we’re going with this group. They’ve put themselves in a good position this year. We’re going through a downturn. I can’t act like it’s not happening. We’re not getting the results that are needed to be a successful team. But I don’t think every time you hit a bump in the road you want to reinvent the wheel.”
Blue GM Doug Armstrong said it’s on the team leaders to help turn them around and not by making changes.
“This now becomes on the fabric of the leadership to grab a hold of the team and get it going,” he said. “Ken can give them the game plan, but he can’t give them the desire and the drive. That has to come internally. The desire to compete for the guy beside you, that has to come from inside the room.”
- Eric Engels: On TSN panel saying Oilers should trade Jordan Eberle: “Only player they should and can trade for great value is Nail Yakupov. Sam Gagner is another. You don’t touch RNH, Hall, Eberle” David Staples: (responding to Eberle) “Yeah, instead of getting rid of guys who aren’t performing, trade one guy (Eberle) who has for the last 4 years. Brilliant! Trade Gagner. Trade Hemsky. Petry or Yak even. Trade the 1st overall. But trade Eberle? Why? He’s a real two-way NHL player.
- Hope Smoke: Leafs GM Dave Nonis: ”I wouldn’t say that I would ever move either one of the goalies, but I don’t envision it right now”
- Hope Smoke: Darren Dreger: ”I think it’s fair to say the Leafs were considered a serious trading partner for Del Zotto. Talks never got very heavy.” … ”Leafs had interest in Del Zotto & there was some Gardiner talk but the Rangers wanted Franson. Leafs scared by MDZ’s inconsistency”
- Dan Murphy: The Canucks are looking to bring in Vinny Prospal on an AHL PTO. SportsNet Pacific: GM Mike Gillis: ”Based on our injury situation, and not sure what the future may hold it was an option worth looking at.” Aaron Portzline: On Prospal: “Can’t skate, but he never could. Knows where to stand. Passionate, smart player. Has a love/hate thing w Torts.”