NHL Rumors: Kovalchuk, Maple Leafs, Canadiens, Devils and Blue Jackets

NHL Rumors: Kovalchuk, Maple Leafs, Canadiens, Devils and Blue Jackets

Columbus Blue Jackets need to extend head coach John Tortorella
On Ilya Kovalchuk

Aivis Kalnins: Hearing that Ilya Kovalchuk has decided to move to North America. He is still hoping for New York, but wiling to take a deal elsewhere.

Aivis Kalnins: The Buffalo Sabres haven’t spoken with Kovalchuk.

Aivis Kalnins: Alexander Radulov could also have an impact on where Ilya Kovalchuk ends up.

On the Toronto Maple leafs …

Jimmy Murphy: All quiet on the Maple Leafs front. Agree with Elliotte Friedman that they could do something “big” and that could be why they are quiet.

On the Montreal Canadiens …

Eric Engels: The Canadiens weren’t going to lose Nathan Beaulieu for nothing so they trade him to the Sabres.

Darren Dreger: The Canadiens have to have another deal coming.

On the New  Jersey Devils …

Jimmy Murphy: Devils GM Ray Shero has said that defensemen will be his focus. There have been trade offered for the first overall pick, but nothing good enough yet to move it.

NHL Expansion Draft: Protected and Unprotected Team Lists

On the Columbus Blue Jackets …

Aaron Portzline of the Columbus Dispatch: Coach John Tortorella is a Jack Adam finalist and is entering the final year of his five-year, $10 million deal that he signed with the Canucks. The Canucks pay $1.25 a season, while the Blue Jackets pay $750,000. His next contract will definitely be more than $2 million a season.

“(Tortorella) needs to want to extend with us,” Blue Jackets general manager Jarmo Kekalainen said. “We’re hoping he does. We certainly want to.

“He did a great job for us, together with his coaching staff. I don’t ever want to pin it on just him; he has a great staff helping him out. There’s no coach in the world, in my opinion, who can coach a team well without any good players. We have some great young talent, and I think he can bring our team to the next level. So hopefully we get it done.”