On the Dallas Stars …
Mike Heika of the Dallas Morning News: (chat) The Dallas Stars can’t go past this season with the goaltending tandem of Kari Lehtonen and Antti Niemi. If bought out, Lehtonen would carry a $1.9 million salary cap for the next two years, with Niemi carrying a $1.5 million cap hit for two years.
Heika thinks that Stars were forced to take Greg Pateryn in their deadline deal with the Canadiens, and Mark McNeill from Chicago to get the draft pick they wanted for defensemen Jordie Benn and Johnny Oduya.
On the New York Islanders …
Chris Nichols of FanRag Sports: Pierre LeBrun was on TSN 1040 this morning talking about the New York Islanders and what John Tavares could do. Tavares will be an unrestricted free agent after next season. LeBrun doesn’t think Tavares has decided yet want he’s going to do. He’d like to stay with the Islanders, and LeBrun thinks that he likely will, but he may be waiting to hear what the new ownership has to say about their future organizational plans. The Islanders are expected to bring in new president of hockey options at some point.
“But I think John Tavares needs to see the plan. Are we acquiring players. Are we going to upgrade. The Islanders certainly had discussions with the Colorado Avalanche before the trade deadline about Matt Duchene. That would have certainly been music to John Tavares’ ears, I think, even though the trade didn’t happen.
“I just think he needs to be sold on a plan and then he’ll stay, is my opinion. But certainly the decision is coming. He either signs an extension this summer or they trade him. They’re not going to want him to enter his walk year.”