- Arthur Staple of Newsday: Staple thinks the Islanders had no intention of re-signing Matt Moulson. He doesn’t see Moulson being with the Sabres beyond the trade deadline. Staple’s had heard rumblings that Moulson and he reps were disappointed GM Garth Snow didn’t start contract extension talks over the summer. Moulson’s starting point could have started at $6 million and there is no way that Snow would give him more than John Tavares’s $5.5 million. The Islanders may have been concerned that the soon to be 30 year old didn’t have the skill set to keep up with their young, fast group. They may want a top line winger that could grow with Tavares. If the Islanders are not in the hunt this season, Snow could flip Thomas Vanek to regain some of the picks he gave up.
- John Buccigross: If Buccigross was Matt Moulson’s agent, would be asking for five years and $25 million.
- John Vogl of the Buffalo News: Source saying that the Sabres had been willing to make Thomas Vanek the highest paid player in the NHL, but he didn’t want to be part of a rebuild.
“I enjoyed my time there, but I didn’t want to be a part of that,” Vanek told reporters in New York today following his first practice with the Islanders. “We traded pretty much every veteran. The message was clear that they’re going for draft picks. I think our last game we played four teenagers. Good, young players, but young players take time.”
- Elliotte Friedman of CBC: The Sabres currently have nine draft picks for the 2014 and 2015 drafts. They could add to that by moving Matt Moulson, Ryan Miller and Steve Ott, or they could use the draft picks to bring in other assets.
“Draft picks are your currency,” Regier said. “You can either use them to select players, or use them in other ways to help your team.”
- Brian Stubits of CBS Sports: Elliotte Friedman on Sportsnet 960 yesterday:
“I think the St. Louis Blues were looking at Vanek. I wouldn’t be surprised if they’re looking at Miller. I’m hearing that St. Louis is a team that’s going to be interesting, that’s a group that wants to go for it this year.”
Note: Friedman is saying “wouldn’t be surprised” and not that “they are.”
- The Fourth Period: Panthers GM Dale Tallon continues to look to make a move. They are believed to be shopping their top forwards for not picks and prospects, but looking for young, NHL-proven players. Rumors of Kris Versteeg, Tomas Fleischmann, Scottie Upshall, Brad Boyes, Marcel Goc, Tomas Kopecky, Dmitry Kulikov and Mike Weaver could be available. Tallon watched the Canadiens-Sharks game on Saturday. The Canadiens are looking for scoring and the Sharks would like to add to their blueline. Unclear if any talks have taken place.
- The Fourth Period: The Kings only have about $600,000 in cap space, and are looking to trade some of their depth to create more room. Separate sources saying they could move either a forward or a defenseman. The Kings would like to add a second line left winger but currently don’t have the room. GM Dean Lombardi was trying to trade Kyle Clifford and Alec Martinez in the summer. One source said they could be looking for a draft pick for Clifford, Martinez, Keaton Ellerby or Trevor Lewis.
- Luke Fox of SportsNet: SportsNet’s Doug MacLean thinks the Flyers would be a good fit for Ryan Miller. To make sense for the Flyers, MacLean thinks they would need to sign him to a contract extension as it doesn’t make sense for them to give up assets for a rental. Nick Kypreos said that Miller won’t approve a trade to a Canadian team. The Flyers are willing to make a trade before Christmas. The Flyers could send Ray Emery and picks to the Sabres.
- Nick Kypreos: Kypreos is hearing that the bar has been set in talks between Dion Phaneuf and the Maple Leafs, and it starts at seven years and $50 million.
- Hope Smoke: Darren Dreger on TSN Radio: “For me the Oilers biggest problem is Dubnyk & a blueliner. When they’ve figured that out they need a centre too”
- Josh Rimer of HockeyBuzz: Thomas Vanek really wants to play with the Wild, and a very good source said he plans to test free agency this summer. Rimer has been told that the Flyers and Sabres have talked about Ryan Miller with the Sabres continually asking for Sean Couturier. John-Michael Liles may be showcased in Edmonton as the Oilers are looking for a defenseman, with the asking price likely a third or fourth round pick. The Oilers may have reached out to the Penguins about a defenseman. Doubtful that the Penguins trade Matt Niskanen now, but could may be move Paul Martin.