Posts Tagged Atlanta Thrashers

Waddell not heading to Winnipeg with team … Re-alignment battle coming … Panthers to hire Dineen … Sens, Stars interviewing coaches

  • Jim Matheson of the Edmonton Journal: Atlanta Thrashers Winnipeg president Don Waddell will manage the team until the Board of Governors approves the sale on June 21st, he will not be heading north with the team. “When we hand our keys over to Winnipeg, I want to make sure it’s in the best condition possible,” said Waddell. Waddell was trying to get people together to keep the team in Atlanta, “We tried to marry up people, some willing to put up $5 million, $10 million, up to $20 million, I tried it with multiple groups, but we couldn’t make it work,” he said. “We couldn’t raise enough capital to buy it and to operate it.”
  • Bruce Garrioch of the Ottawa Sun: There will be a battle off-ice to see which team moves to the Eastern Conference after next season. The Red Wings, Blue Jackets and Predators all want to switch conferences. “This is going to be a huge fight,” said a league executive. The Wings have wanted to move for over a decade.

    “The only problem for the Wings is they are a huge draw for a lot of the teams in the Western Conference,” said another NHL executive. “They’re not going to want to give up those dates when the Wings come to town.

    “The Predators and Jackets don’t draw nearly as many fans for a lot of those teams as Detroit does. There’s going to be a lot of Western teams that won’t want to see Detroit moved to the East.”

  • Bruce Garrioch via twitter: The Ottawa Senators have started interviewing head coaches. Red Wings assistant Paul MacLean and Canadiens Kirk Muller have both held talks already. Sources are saying that MacLean was in Ottawa on Monday and Muller spoke with management in the last 48 hours. It’s beleived that Sens GM Bryan Murray will speak with 5 potential candidates. After the Calder Cup the Sens will interview Kurt Kleinendorst.
  • Damian Cristodero of the St. Petersburg Times: Steven Stamkos, his agent Mark Guy and Lightning GM Steve Yzerman don’t see any reason why a deal can’t get done.

    “Both sides have a good relationship,” Guy said Monday. “Steven likes Tampa Bay, and he likes the environment. I don’t see any reason why once we get down to it, we won’t get something done.”

    Stamkos is expected to sign for atleast $7 million a season.

  • Mike Heika of the Dallas Morning News: Stars GM Joe Nieuwendyk has interviewed 3 possible head coaches and plans for at least 1 more. He has talked to Glen Gulutzan (Texas AHL), Ken Hitchcock and Peter Horachek (Nashville assistant). Nieuwendyk also plans to talk to Kirk Muller and possibly someone else. They would like to have coach in place before the end of June.
  • Mike Heika of the Dallas Morning News: There could be some news regarding the sale of the Dallas Stars by the end of the week according to interim president Tony Tavares.

    “There has been a lot of progress made in the past week, and we’re very confident about things moving forward,” Tavares said.

    Vancouver businessman Tom Gaglardi is moving forward and received an extension on his exclusive 30-day negotiating window according to 2 sources. The process is complicated deal as it has to go through court proceedings and may not be official until July or August. Dallas businessmen Dough Miller and Billy Quinn are also interested in the team. Detroit businessman Christopher T. Charlton may also be interested.

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Winnipeg press conference for 11 am Central, 12 pm Eastern … Lightning off-season notes … Panthers sign Skille

  • Jim Jamieson of the Vancouver Province: Christian Ehrhoff and Aaron Rome will be in the lineup for Game 1. Ehrhoff suffered what looked to be a shoulder injury in Game 3 against the Sharks. Rome was dazed in Game 3 after a hit from behind.
  • The Fourth Period: Steven Stamkos’s agent told The Fourth Period that he’ll be discussing a multi-year deal with the Lightning “in the near future.” They could work on a 5 year deal.
  • Dave Molinari of the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette: The Penguins won’t be signing 2009 draft picks, center Andy Bathgate and Dman Viktor Ekbom. Bathgate was a 5th round pick and recorded 60 point in 64 games with Belleville of the OHL. He’s missed a lot of time with a shoulder injury the last 2 1/2 years. Ekbom was a 6th round pick, recording 8 assists in 96 games the last 2 seasons with Linkoping in Sweden’s Eletserien. Both will re-enter the draft.
  • Ken Warren of the Ottawa Citizen: The Senators signed prospects Jakub Silfverberg and Louie Caporusso to entry level deals yesterday. Silfverberg was a 2nd round pick in 2009, and Caporusso was playing at the University of Michigan.

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Atlanta to Winnipeg could be announced as early as tomorrow morning … Stamkos had shoulder issue … Cizikas to sign with Isles

  • Nick Kypreos via twitter: A formal announcement regarding the moving of the Atlanta Thrashers to Winnipeg could come as early as 10 am tomorrow morning. Bob McKenzie via twitter: “WPG lawyers signed off on their end. ATL lawyers doing their due diligence now. Soon as they sign off, deal is done, pending board approval.” Bob McKenzie via twitter: “If ATL lawyers sign off today, announcement tomorrow morning. If ATL lawyers don’t sign off today, drags out another day or two.”

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Malhotra plans for Game 1 … Wings looking for Dman … Crosby to be re-evaluated … Another group interested in Thrashers

  • Jason Botchford of the Vancouver Province: Canucks forward Manny Malhotra has been given medical clearance and is preparing to play in Game 1 of the Stanley Cup Final. 11 weeks ago he nearly lost his eye. “Everything is as it should be,” Malhotra said of the eye. “Going forward, I will continue to be monitored daily and if at any time the doctor doesn’t like what he sees, he has the ultimate veto power,” Malhotra said. Malhotra is expected to take Cody Hodgson’s spot as the 4th line center.
  • Bob Wojnowski of the Detroit News: The Red Wings will now be looking for a top defenseman after Rafalski’s unexpected retirement. “The market isn’t as strong, but we’re only looking for one guy,” Holland said. “If a player’s not out there or doesn’t want to buy into the program, we’ll look at an alternative plan. Do you go a touch higher than you want? Yeah. But we’re not going to go dramatically higher than what we think makes sense.” UFA’s that might interest the Wings are Kevin Bieksa, Christian Ehrhoff, Joni Pitkanen, Ed Jovanovski, James Wisniewski, Roman Hamrlik, Ian White and Tomas Kaberle.
  • Fan 590 Audio: Ken Holland talks on Prime Time Sports (Thursday) talking about Rafalski’s retirement and what it means for their blueline.
  • Shelly Anderson of the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette: Sidney Crosby will be re-evaluated by a concussion specialist in the next week or so. Crosby has been vacationing in Europe, needs clearance from doctors before he can resume his off-season workouts. The Penguins won’t be re-signing Alex Kovalev or Mike Comrie. Comrie could retire, “I’m not sure what Mike’s going to do,” Shero said. “He might be leaning toward retirement.” Shero didn’t rule out re-signing any of their UFA’s: Max Talbot, Pascal Dupuis, Mike Rupp, Craig Adams, Arron Asham, Eric Godard, Chris Conner and Nick Johnson.
  • Craig Custance of the Sporting News: Chris Osgood is “100 percent healthy” but a decision on his playing future is still not known.  “He’s going through the internal process to decide if he has the energy and the desire and determination to play hockey again,” Holland said. “In the middle of June, we’ll look at the goalies that are out there, we’re going to try and figure out a way to be the best team that we can.”
  • Chris Vivlamore of the Atlanta Journal-Constitution: Another group stepped forward with interest in buying the Thrashers and keeping the team in Atlanta. Statement from president Don Waddell.

    “Along with all other groups who have expressed an interest in pursuing an ownership opportunity, which has happened as recently as earlier this week, we have said continuously that ‘until an agreement is signed and approved by the board of governors, it’s never too late but they will have to move very quickly and decisively.  Ownership still is committed to selling at a greatly reduced price to anyone committed to Atlanta.’  ”

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Bergenheim doubtful … Ehrhoff and Rome ready for Finals … Malhotra cleared for contact … Calgary, Ottawa, and New Jersey coaching notes

  • Corey Masisak via twitter: Lightning coach Guy Boucher says that though Sean Bergenheim has improved but he’s “doubtful” for tonight.
  • Dhiren Mahiban of NHL.com: Canucks coach Alain Vigneault expects both Christian Ehrhoff and Aaron Rome back in the lineup for Game 1 of the Stanley Cup Finals.
  • Jesse Spector of the NY Daily News: The only way Bryan McCabe returns to the Rangers next season would be if he’d take a big pay cut from the $4.15 million he made last year, and that may still not be enough.
  • Bob McKenzie via twitter: Talk that Craig Hartsburg could leave Everett (WHL) and join the Flames alongside Brent Sutter.
  • David Pagnotta via twitter: The Devils haven’t officially spoken with Ken Hitchcock about their vacant head coaching position, could happen next week.

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Isles re-sign Okposo for 5 years … Thornton’s and other Sharks injuries … Preds will match any Weber offer sheets

  • The New York Times: The NY Islanders have locked Kyle Okposo (23) up for 5 years, at $14 million. Okposo was drafted 7th overall in 2006. He missed the first 44 games last year with a lorn labrum. In 192 career games he’s scored 44 goals and added 72 assists. He’ll make $1 million next year, $2 million in 2012-13, $3 million in 2013-14, $3.5 million in 2014-15 and $4.5 million in 2015-16.
  • Mark Emmons of the San Jose Mercury News: Not only did Sharks center Joe Thornton have a separated shoulder in Game 5, but he’s been dealing with a pinky injury since the regular season, which ended up bothering his wrist.

    “My pinky went in a different direction than it was supposed to,” Thornton said. “The top just got cut off and they had to put it back together. It happened with a couple games left in the regular season. That surgery probably will happen tomorrow.”

    His shoulder injury won’t require surgery. The full list of other injured Sharks isn’t known yet. Jason Demers missed the Vancouver series. Ryane Clowe’s upper-body injury “needs to be repaired.”

    “It was a lot of guys, and I think that’s a good sign,” McLellan said. “We were bumped, banged and bruised a lot more this year than last season. No one ever wants to be hurt, but that’s a good sign.”

    UFA defenseman Ian White said he’d like to return next year.

  • Pierre LeBrun of ESPN: A challenge for Sharks GM Doug Wilson is to improve the blueline, bringing in a top-four defenseman. Dany Heatley struggled again in the playoffs (3 goals in 18 games) and has 3 years at a $7.5 million cap hit. RFA Devin Setoguchi has been inconsistent and the Sharks could explore a trade at the draft. Joe Pavelski’s production this playoffs dropped compared to last year, 17 points in 15 games to 10 points in 18 games.
  • Craig Custance of the SportingNews: Predators coach Barry Trotz on teams thinking of about giving Shea Weber an offer sheet,

    “We’ll just match it,” Trotz told Sporting News. “I can tell you, whatever they offer, it’ll just get matched.”

    and added,

    “I know he’s going to get done. I can tell you that,” Trotz said. “They’ve had some good discussions.”

  • Renaud Lavoie via twitter: Lavoie reports True North will pay a total of $170 million to move the Atlanta Thrashers to Winnipeg, $130 to buy the team and $40 for relocation fees.

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Roloson to start … Thornton played with separated shoulder … Red Wings options … Leafs and Richards … A Souray buyout coming?

  • Darren Dreger via twitter: “Sorry Wpg, it’s inching closer, but there still is no firm deal with ASG and there will not be an announcement today. From a key source.” Bob McKenzie via twitter: “As for WPG, principals still grinding out detail work. Hearing Thurs as earliest possible date for announcement, perhaps Fri or later.”
  • Brian Ted Kulfan of the Detroit News: Brian Rafalski will retire at an 11 am press conference. The Wings now have an extra $6 million to work with this summer. Possible free agent defenseman the Red Wings could look at are Canucks Kevin Bieksa, Sami Salo and Christian Ehrhoff, Joni Pitkanen (Car), Tomas Kaberle (Bos), Ed Jovanovski (Pho), Eric Brewer (TB) and Scott Hannan (Was). RFA’s that would require multiple 1st round picks in an offer are Drew Doughty and Shea Weber.
  • Helene St. James of the Detroit Free Press: If Nicklas Lidstrom returns to the Red Wings, he’ll join Niklas Kronwall, Brad Stuart, and Jakub Kindl. Jonathan Ericsson might be brought back as they have a bit more financial flexibility with Rafalski retiring, but they won’t overpay for him. Ruslan Salei is likely done with the Wings. 2007 1st round pick Brendan Smith has a shot at making the team. They could bring in 35 year old Ed Jovanovski to eat up minutes. Kevin Bieksa could be another option, as well as Joni Pitkanen, Sami Salo, Eric Brewer, Tomas Kaberle, Bryan McCabe and Roman Hamrlik.
  • Pierre LeBrun via twitter: Lidstom will let the Red Wings know of his plan to retire or to come back again likely before the NHL draft.
  • Damien Cox of the Toronto Star: The Maple Leafs want to be in the Brad Richards sweepstakes. It has been suggested that Burke could possibly offer a deal in the 7 or 8 year range, which goes against his usual philosophy. Richards could get more than $7 million, possibly up to $8 million. The Rangers or Kings might consider offering more. Without having an owner and coach in place, it would be difficult for Nieuwendyk to re-sign Richards. The Leafs could look to acquire his rights before July 1st, but not if it requires them to send Nazem Kadri the other way.
  • Jim Matheson of the Edmonton Journal: The Oilers are considering options again with regards to defenseman Sheldon Souray. He’s still owed $4.5 million with a $5.4 million cap hit. They could buy him out after June 15th for 2/3′s salary, cap hit spread out over 2 years. He could also be sent to the minors. The Oilers are still pursuing Swedish goalie Viktor Fasth and are interested in Finnish Dman Ville Lajunen. Zach Stortini could be traded by the entry draft.
  • Jeremy Rutherford of the St. Louis Post Dispatch: Blues forward David Perron is making some progress with his post-concussion syndromes.

    “We’ve talked to David, and he’s feeling better, but he’s not at the point where he’s coming back to St. Louis to take the necessary tests before he can train,” Blues general manager Doug Armstrong said. “He’s taking small steps ahead, but not to the point where he has passed his tests to begin his summer training program.”

    Armstrong had said that if Perron still have symptoms in July, they would have to plan to start the season without him.

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Ehrhoff and Rome out for Canucks … Not much of turnout for Thrashers “select-a-seat” … Blackhawks notes

  • Tony Gallagher of the Vancouver Province: Canucks defenseman Christian Ehrhoff and Aaron Rome are  likely to be replaced by Keith Ballard and Andrew Alberts. Christian Ehrhoff possibly separated his shoulder in the 1st period of Game 3. Aaron Rome may have a concussion.
  • George Henry of the Globe and Mail: Only 200 Thrashers fans turned out for Atlanta’s “select-a-seat” event in which potential and current season’s ticket holders can check out the seats, look at the ice and talk about the draft. “We’ve been lied to for six years,” Jenn Peters, 30, said while choking back tears as she flipped through a collection of ticket stubs. “It’s hard to watch as a fan because there’s nothing you can do but show up. You can voice your opinion and you can show up, but that’s all you can do.” The Thrashers website didn’t promote the event.
  • Andy Strickland via twitter: A current Atlanta Thrasher only knows what everyone else does and is waiting for some announcement to let the players know what’s going on.
  • Jesse Rogers of ESPN Chicago: The Blackhawks have 16 players under contact for about $54 million for next season. They are expected to re-sign Michael Frolik and Chris Campoli. The chances of re-signing UFA Tomas Kopecky are slim, and they may not be able to afford Troy Brouwer. It’s likely that one or more of their RFA’s will be traded and if they could move one of Brian Campbell or Niklas Hjalmarsson, it would free up some cap space. It would be hard for them to move Campbell due to his salary, but at 23 Hjalmarsson could get some interest.
  • Craig Custance of the Sporting News: Red Wings GM Ken Holland needs to find a way to trade Jiri Hudler and his $2.875 million contract. It would have the Wings some extra cap room for free agency.

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Boogaard’s death deemed accidental … Blackhawks sign a backup … Red Wings won’t be spenders … No talks yet for Parise

  • Michael Russo of the Star-Tribune: It has been determined that Rangers enforcer Derek Boogaard died accidentally from a toxic mix of alcohol and oxycodone. His family acknowledged he had an addiction and “repeated courageous attempts at rehabilitation.” “Derek had been showing tremendous improvement but was ultimately unable to beat this opponent,” the message from Boogaard’s parents, Len and Joanne, and brothers and sister said. “While he played and lived with pain for many years, his passion for the game, his teammates and his community work was unstoppable.” Boogaard had voluntarily admitted himself into rehab 3 times since 2009.
  • Chris Kuc of the Chicago Tribune: The Blackhawks have reportedly signed goal Alexander Salak to a 2 year, one way contract. Salak was acquired along with Michael Frolik for Jack Skille and prospects. He played in the Swedish Elite league this past season, appearing in 32 games with a 1.97 GAA and .926 SV%. He’ll make about $600,000 and is in the mix for the backup job. Marty Truco is likely gone.
  • Gord Miller via twitter: Winnipeg mayor says it’s only a  “matter of time” before  a deal to move the Thrashers to Winnipeg is done, it’s not done yet. Darren Dreger via twitter: “Assuming ASG and TNSE reach agreement, NHL board approval may not happen until the end of June B of G mtng. No push to expedite that mtng.” Pierre LeBrun via twitter: “Re-alignment would very likely wait another season; Winnipeg would play in Southeast for one year”
  • Ted Kulfan of the Detroit News: Don’t look for the Red Wings to be big spenders this off-season. They currently have 15 players locked up for $46.8 million. So they have about $16 million open for 8 players and have 4 free agents; Nicklas Lidstrom, Jonathan Ericsson, Patrick  Eaves and Drew Miller that they’d like to bring back.
  • Jesse Spector of the NY Daily News: The NY Rangers will have to decide if Matt Gilroy is worth a $2.1 million qualifying offer. It may be more than they want to pay the 27 year old who has made a limited impact so far. They have depth along the blueline, prospects waiting a limited cap space.
  • Tom Gulitti of the Bergon Record: There is nothing to report on Zach Parise talks with the Devils. “(Lamoriello) said they were going to have their internal (end of season) meetings and he was awaiting some direction on the whole ownership situation and once he had that he would reach out to us,” Wade Arnott said. “So, that’s where we stand.”
  • Craig Custance of the Sporting News: The Panthers have received permission to talk to Thrashers assistant John Torchetti. They may also seek permission to talk with Blackhawks assistant Mike Haviland. Kirk Muller is a potential candidate for the Dallas Stars coaching position. Joe Nieuwendyk has also reportedly contacted Guy Carbonneau, Cory Clouston and Ken Hitchcock.

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The Atlanta Thrashers are moving to Winnipeg … Deal done … errr well maybe not

Stephen Brunt of the Globe and Mail: The Atlanta Thrashers are on their way to Winnipeg, the deal is reportedly done. Sources confirmed that an announcement will be made tomorrow to confirm the sale to the True North Sports and Entertainment group. Gary Bettmen is expected to head to Winnipeg to make official.

Pierre LeBrun via twitter: “I’m sure Thrash to ‘Peg will get done folks. It’s just not done yet.”

Gary Lawless of the Winnipeg Free Press: “True North Sports and Entertainment says a Globe and Mail report stating the group has reached an agreement to buy the Atlanta Thrashers is complete is not accurate.

A high ranking True North official involved in negotiations to buy the Thrashers would not say any more.”

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Bergeron traveling with team to Tampa … Kubina not progressing well … Moller to Sweden … Vishneskiy to KHL … No contract news for Parise

  • Steve Conroy of the Boston Herald: A team spokesman said that he believes Patrice Bergeron will travel with the club to Tampa today. He’s progressing well and could be in the lineup for Game 3 or 4.
  • Erik Erlendsson of the Tampa Tribune: Pavel Kubina is still listed as ‘day-to-day’ with an upper body injury. He’s been out since Game 1 of the Washington series after hitting his head against the boards. “He’s not even here, so the update is not very good,” Boucher said. “Every day when there seems to be a little progression, it kind of slips back a bit. So, it’s kind of an injury that you never know. You wake up the next day and everything’s great or just keeps on going the same way, so it’s very hard to monitor what’s going on with him.”
  • Dave Molinari of the Pittsburgh Post Gazette: Penguins GM Ray Shero said he’s “had a few conversations” some of their soon to be free agents representatives. Negotiations for most of their free agents will have to wait until after their amateur scouting meetings are over (running June 6-8). He didn’t rule out doing a deal or two before. The Penguins have about $55.7 million committed to 17 players for next year. Sidney Crosby is scheduled to meet with his concussion specialist before the end of the month.
  • Chicago Sun-Times: Blackhawks prospect Ivan Vishnevskiy signed with Atlanta of the KHL. He was acquired with a 2nd round pick for Andrew Ladd. His entry level deal expired after this season. Vishneskiy had 15 points in 46 game in the AHL.
  • Rich Hammond of LA Kings Insider: Kings prospect Oscar Moller has been talking to teams in Sweden and could be signing a 2 year contract. Any contract he signs would have an ‘out’ clause so that he could return to the NHL. The Kings don’t really mind this, as it will allow him to play professionally and gain some experience against older players.
  • Andy Strickland via twitter: There is still no indication if Vladimir Tarasenko is looking to buyout his KHL contract and sign a NHL deal.
  • Mike Heika of the Dallas Morning News: The Stars have contacted several potential coaching candidates but don’t have a timetable to the hiring. “The ownership situation is a huge part of this, and it’s something we’re going to have to be aware of,” said Nieuwendyk.
  • Kevin Allen via twitter: A group interested in keeping the Thrashers in Atlanta have submitted a term sheet outlining their offer. The 2nd group is serious but not are not as far along in the financial process compared to the True North group.
  • Dmitry Chesnokov via twitter: KHL’s Avagnard is still interested in signing Jaromir Jagr unless he wants more money. The Alexander Frolov signing doesn’t affect Jagr’s situation.

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Bergeron’s status still unknown … Hurricanes off-season notes … Devils coaching candidates … Some Flyers goalie options

  • Steve Conroy of the Boston Herald: Patrice Bergeron skated with the Bruins strength and conditioning coach yesterday before practice. He did some work with the team, so there may be hope that he can go tonight. He took part in some power play and penalty killing drills, and took a few shifts with linemates Recchi and Marchand. When asked if Bergeron was ruled out for Game 2, Julien said, “No comments.” Then he added, “I don’t know. Is that better?”
  • Steve Conroy of the Boston Herald: Tyler Seguin practiced on the 1st power play unit with Milan Lucic and Nathan Horton, and later on the 2nd unit with Mark Recchi and Michael Ryder. “We’ve got different looks, we’ve got different players. We want to make the power play work. And it’s never a bad thing to have those guys go through it, and if at one point you need him, you need him,” Julien said. “And what I said (Sunday) was exactly what we wanted to do with Tyler. I mean he hadn’t played a playoff game yet, and you give him a little bit to chew and then you give him maybe opportunities if need be in other areas.”
  • Bob McKenzie via twitter: “IF, and I said IF, ATL moves to WPG, conventional wisdom is WPG to Northwest, MIN to Central and NSH to Southeast. But…” “…due to time issues, notion of WPG playing 1 season in Southeast not out of question. Realignment would come 1 yr later. Still lotsa ifs.”
  • Chip Alexander via twitter: Though there is no offical work, Paul Maurice is expected to return as the Hurricanes head coach next season. Ron Francis is expected to move to assistant GM from his assistant coaching position. Erik Cole could possibly re-sign with the Canes before July 1st, and Brandon Sutter could get a long term deal. Cory Stillman could also re-sign with the Hurricanes, and then move to the front office after he’s done playing. The Canes will look to re-sign Chad LaRose. Re-signing Joni Pitkanen and Jussi Jokinen will be tougher. If they are unable to re-sign Pitkanen, they will look at bringing in another defenseman. They will also look signing an experienced backup and 4th line center.
  • Chris Botta of the NY Times: The New Jersey Devils head coaching search will now start as all candidates are available to talk. Likely to get a call from Lou are Ken Hitchcock, Michel Therrien, Kirk Muller, Scott Gordon, Mike Haviland and Larry Robinson. They should have a head coach picked before the draft on June 24th.
  • Chuck Gormley of the Deleware New Journal: There are whispers that the Flyers may make a pitch for Ryan Miller, Henrik Lundqvist, Miikka Kiprusoff, Niklas Backstrom or Martin Brodeur. The only way to pull off a Miller, Lundqvist or Brodeur deal would be to involve a 3rd team. Kiprusoff will be 35 in October and makes $5.833 million. Backstrom has a $6 million cap hit and would require them to shed at least $3 million. They could trade Jeff Carter to the Wild. Gormley adds they could send Kris Versteeg and Matt Carle for Backstrom and perhaps Brent Burns (It would take a lot more than Versteeg and Carle to get Backstrom and Burns IMO).

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