Posts Tagged Dustin Byfuglien

NHL Rumors II: Maple Leafs, Capitals, Predators, Selanne, Spezza, Byfuglien and Giguere

  • Kevin McGran of the Toronto Star: If the Maple Leafs fire Randy Carlyle, some coaches that they may be interested in: Mike Keenan, John Hynes (Wilkes-Barre/Scranton Penguins head coach), Peter Laviolette and Kevin Dineen. The Leafs have $49 million committed to 12 players next season, leaving about $22 million for 11 more players. Low cost players like Petter Granberg, Andrew MacWilliam, Jerry D’Amigo and Spencer Abbott could be used. That would leave about $18 million for eight players. UFAs: Dave Bolland, Nikolai Kulemin, Jay McClement, Mason Raymond, Troy Bodie and Paul Ranger. RFAs: James Reimer, Cody Franson, Jake Gardiner, Peter Holland, Carter Ashton, D’Amigo and Abbott. The Leafs could use their RFAs as trade bait. Reimer is likely gone, especially if Randy Carlyle stays. Gardiner may want $3 million a year, and could be used as trade bait for a top center.
  • Kevin Allen of USA Today: Capitals owner Ted Leonsis may not bring GM George McPhee and coach Adam Oates back. Leonsis must also look at Alex Ovechkin, is he part of the solution or part of the problem? Do they look to see if a new coach could change him or look to move him out?

    It’s hard to see John Tortorella returning to the Canucks.

    Randy Carlyle will likely be fired by Maple Leafs. The Leafs appear to be ready to make some major moves this offseason, with Nazem Kadri possibly the center piece of a deal.

    The Predators may look at firing coach Barry Trotz. He won’t be out of work long if they let him go.

  • Chris Johnston: “I would not be surprised to see Teemu Selanne return to the NHL next year. In Sochi, he made it clear that he still has more to give.”
  • Sens Chirp: TSNs Brent Wallace on whether Jason Spezza will be back with the Senators next year, “probably not.”
  • Ken Wiebe: Jets coach Paul Maurice said that Dustin Byfuglien will start next year at forward.
  • Lisa Hillary: When asked if last night’s game against the Ducks would be his last regular season game, Avs J.S. Giguere said: ”Well I have flown in my family for the game.” Eric Stephens: When talking with Giguere a few weeks ago, Giguere said it’s most certainly it for him. Didn’t want it to get out there.
  • David Pagnotta: Sabres coach Ted Nolan: ”I’m a strong believer in laying a foundation… Timmy and I will have a good chance to reevaluate what we’ve got (this off-season).”

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NHL Injuries: Jets, Blue Jackets, Capitals, Blues, Maple Leafs and Sabres

  • Ken Wiebe: Jets defenseman Dustin Byfuglien is finished for the season with a torn muscle.
  • Ken Wiebe: Jets forward Andrew Ladd missed last night’s game and he could be finished for the year as well according to Paul Maurice.
  • Aaron Portzline: Blue Jackets top 9 injuries: Nathan Horton, Nick Foligno and R.J. Umberger.
  • Shawn Mitchell: Blue Jackets R.J. Umberger has an upper-body injury and will be out “for probably at least a couple of weeks” according to Todd Richards.
  • Rob Mixer: Blue Jackets Nikita Nikitin who had been bothered with a lower-body injury has been cleared to play two games ago.
  • Adam Vingan: Capitals Mike Green missed practice with an upper-body injury.
  • Lou Korac: Blues Alex Steen remains day-to-day, no update yesterday.
  • Elliotte Friedman: Maple Leafs Joffrey Lupul will have knee surgery and is will be out three weeks.
  • AP in ESPN: Sabres Chad Ruhwedel and Nathan Lieuwen will be out for the remainder of the season with concussions. Christian Ehrhoff status for tonight is not known after taking a puck to the ear. Marcus Foligno (knee), Chris Stewart (lower-body) and Torrey Mitchell (undisclosed) could return tonight.
  • Dan Wood: Ducks Cam Fowler “will play this week” according to coach Bruce Boudreau.

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NHL Rumors: Devils, Islanders, Blues, Jets, Maple Leafs, Gilmour and the Bruins

  • Randy Miller of NJ.com: It’s very likely the Devils will make a strong attempt to sign Cory Schneider to a long-term contract. His deal expires after next season. If they are not able to sign him to an extension, they could look to trade him before the start of next season and possibly re-sign Martin Brodeur.  Schneider has said he’s not sure if he’d sign an extension this summer if an offer was fair or if he’d rather play out next season. Miller spoke with Schneider’s agent, Mike Liut. (many questions/answers in link above)

    Q: That sounds like you might think Schneider playing out his contract could be the better route.

    Liut: We don’t know what New Jersey’s thinking. Let’s not be presumptuous. When I get into these conversations with writers, the one thing that scares me is it comes off that Cory is presumptuously deciding today that is what it’s going to be and we’re making decisions. We don’t have anything. We have a clean slate. To say that we haven’t made any decisions would be to overstate our position. There’s no offer.”

  • Arthur Staple of Newsday: Evgeni Nabokov would like to continue playing for the Islanders. The Islanders and Nabokov’s camp won’t talk until after the season. He could do a one-year deal. The Isles may look to acquire a young but experience goalie to be their No. 1 next year.
  • Jim Matheson of the Edmonton Journal: Blues Derek Roy likely won’t be back next year and they could use the $4 million that will be off the books to attempt re-sign Ryan Miller. The Jets may look to deal either Evander Kane or Dustin Byfuglien to shake up their core.
  • David Pagnotta: Pagnotta thinks that trade talks involving Jets Evander Kane will pick up this offseason. The Jets will look to retool.
  • Ken Wiebe of the Winnipeg Sun: Talk of whether or not Evander Kane will be with the Jets next year has begun again. He has been in the rumor for years, dating back to 2011 and a potential deal with the Flyers. Other teams have also been part of the rumors. It’s not known if Kane has asked for a trade. Kane carries a $5.25 million cap hit for the next four seasons. The Jets could keep Kane and hope that he matures both on and off the ice. The Jets could also tire of the situation and move him like the Bruins did with Tyler Seguin.
  • Hope Smoke: Darren Dreger: ”Go down the list, Nonis may be looking to dangle some guys like Lupul. Maybe he needs to shake up the core to help Bolland” … ”I think there is a strong appetite for Leaf fans, and there should be, to bring back Dave Bolland
  • Hope Smoke: Darren Dreger: ”Maybe we need to start talking about likes of Lupul, Phaneuf, go down the list. Some of these guys that have been unable to deliver” … ”Maybe they [players mentioned in previous tweet] should be part of the discussion of change?”
  • Hope Smoke: Darren Dreger: ”McClement for the most part has been a good player for the Leafs & mgmt will want him back.” … ”Raymond too, but you won’t get that guy back for $1 mill. He’ll be $2.5-$3.”
  • Hope Smoke: Darren Dreger: ”I think the Leafs believe they have players in the AHL that can step in and fill Kulemin’s role”
  • Hope Smoke: Darren Dreger: ”If I’m Nonis I’m worried. Sure I can fire the coach, but would a new guy fire up and ignite this bunch?” … ”Leiweke said to me, a few months back, that he was very supportive of hockey ops and would stay away”
  • Murray Pam: Agent Darryl Wolski is reporting that Doug Gilmour is leaving the Kingston Frontenacs (OHL) to coach Lev Praha of the KHL.
  • Matt Kalman: Bruins coach Claude Julien will rest players this week. All players will travel with the team.
  • CapGeek: There will be quite a few teams that will have bonus overages this year that will be carried over to next year. The Bruins will likely have the biggest cap penalty.

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NHL Injuries: Toews, Kane, Malkin, Penner, Jackman, Byfuglien, Nikitin and de Haan

  • Tracey Myers of CSN Chicago: Blackhawks Jonathan Toews (left arm) could start skating by the end of the week. Patrick Kane skated over the weekend and is expected to be ready by the start of the playoffs.
  • Josh Yohe of the Pittsburgh Tribune-Review: Penguins Evgeni Malkin has a hairline fracture in his foot and coach Dan Bylsma isn’t sure if he’ll be in the lineup for the start of the playoffs.

    “It’s not really possible to predict at this point,” Bylsma said. “We’re looking at the two-week point. It will be looked again by doctors (in the next couple of days).”

  • Mike Vogl: Dustin Penner is day-to-day with an upper-body injury.
  • Anaheim Ducks: Ducks Tim Jackman has a broken hand that will require surgery.
  • Ken Wiebe: Jets Dustin Byfuglien is day-to-day with an upper-body injury.
  • Rob Mixer: Blue Jackets defenseman Nikita Nikitin (lower-body) skated yesterday.
  • AP in the NY Post: Islanders Calvin de Haan left last night’s game with an upper-body injury.

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Injury Notes: Stars, Hawks, Ducks, Oilers, Wings, Jets, Canucks, Avs, Leafs and Predators

  • Dallas Stars: Stars GM Jim Nill on Rich Peverley:

    “Rich Peverley underwent successful surgery to correct an abnormal heart rhythm at the Cleveland Clinic on Tuesday, March 18. He is currently in normal sinus rhythm. He was released from the Cleveland Clinic today and is expected to return to Dallas tomorrow. He will be monitored closely and may require further treatment. There is no decision being made at this time on his ability to return to hockey participation.”

  • Tracey Myers: Blackhawks Patrick Kane will be out three weeks with a lower-body injury.
  • Eric Stephens: Ducks Cam Fowler will be out three to five weeks with a sprained left knee.
  • Nick Kypreos: Oilers Jordan Eberle will have a MRI on a suspected knee injury. He’s doubtful for tonight.
  • Mike Halford: Red Wings Jonathan Ericsson breaks his finger and will be out two weeks.
  • Ansar Khan: Red Wings Joakim Andersson (broken foot) and Daniel Cleary (knee) skated yesterday.
  • Ken Wiebe: Jets Dustin Byfuglien missed last night’s game with a lower-body injury. They expect him to play on Saturday.
  • Ben Kuzma: Canucks Chris Tanev has a broken finger and is out three to four weeks.
  • Adrian Dater: Avs John Mitchell missed last night’s game and is day-to-day with a sore back.
  • Stephen Whyno: Maple Leafs Jonathan Bernier will “more than likely” skate in full equipment tomorrow.
  • Josh Cooper: Predators Paul Gaustad left last night’s game with an upper-body injury.
  • Ken Wiebe: Jets Zach Bogosian should be able to return on Saturday.

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Morning Rumors VI: The Bruins Could Be Looking At …..

  • Joe Haggerty of CSNNE: Stars Stephane Robidas may be a riskier pickup than some due to his injury, but he may only cost you a second round pick though.

    “A lot of teams covet [Robidas],” said the exec. “He’s a veteran right-hander that competes like a bastard. He’d be a perfect fit for the Bruins.”

    The Bruins top scout, Adam Creighton, watched three Blue Jackets games. The Jackets are looking to move Marian Gaborik. On the blueline, Nikita Nikitin and Jack Johnson would be natural choices for the Bruins.

  • Joe Haggerty: The Blue Jackets had two scouts at the Bruins – Capitals game.
  • CSNNE: The Bruins are looking to add at least one defenseman. They are interested in Andrew MacDonald but won’t give up a first round pick. Bruins potential targets: MacDonald, Chris Phillips, Dustin Byfuglien, Andrej Meszaros, Nick Schultz, Tom Gilbert, Henrik Tallinder, Christian Ehrhoff and Alex Edler.
  • Aaron Portzline: The Bruins interest in Marian Gaborik may just be insurance if other Eastern Conference teams are looking to add him.
  • David Pagnotta: As much as the Bruins are looking at defenseman, they are also looking for a top-six foward. Gaborik is one of the players being discussed. Pagnotta doesn’t think Gaborik is their No. 1 target.

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Evening Rumors: Penguins, Red Wings, Blackhawks, Leafs, Senators, Rangers, Jets and Flyers

  • Rob Rossi of the Pittsburgh Tribune-Review: Ryan Kesler remains the Penguins top target. The Penguins are feeling that the Flyers and Blackhawks are gaining interest in Kesler as well. If the Canucks don’t move Kesler at the deadline, the Penguins could still circle back in the offseason. GM Ray Shero wants to make a hockey deal to address their third line scoring and toughness. Shero has ownership’s backing to go all-in for Kesler because he has two remaining years on his contract. The Penguins want to keep Derrick Pouliot and Scott Harrington and give up draft picks instead. That could obviously change. A deal could also expand to include more players.

    The Penguins are also watching the Matt Moulson situation and could fall back to it if they feel they are going to lose out on Kesler, or if the Canucks plan to keep him. The Penguins won’t overpay for a rental.

    The Penguins are interested in Andrew MacDonald. Upgrading their blueline is their second priority after Kesler. The Pens maybe okay with adding a rental on the blueline.

    The Penguins have sent pro scout Don Waddell to watch the past couple NJ Devils games. The Devils have three pending free agents on the blueline: Marek Zidlicky, Mark Fayne and Eric Gelinas (RFA)

  • Mark Spector of SportNet: The Red Wings like Canucks Alex Edler and plenty of teams like Ryan Kesler. The Penguins are the front-runner for Kesler. The Blackhawks may have trouble fitting Kesler’s cap hit in. The Leafs giving up Nazam Kadri or a first to acquire Kesler in a Stanley Cup hope would be foolish.

    The Senators are still talking about adding Chris Stewart.The Rangers could be interested in Ales Hemsky for a third round pick. The Oilers don’t have a second or third round pick in this year’s draft. They will be looking for second round pick for Hemsky. Nick Schultz, Ryan Smyth and Ilya Bryzgalov could be dealt for picks.

    The Jets are looking for a winger, which could then allow them to move Dustin Byfuglien back to the blueline. It would have to be a money in, money out deal. The Jets could decide to shop Byfuglien. The Flyers would be one of many teams that would be interested.

    The Flyers are interested in Andrew MacDonald.

    The Flames will trade Mike Cammalleri.

    The LA Kings and Matt Moulson remain linked to each other.

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Afternoon Rumors and Notes: Moulson, Kesler, Scrivens, Wings, Hawks, Waivers, Flyers, Brodeur, Bruins and Devils

  • Pierre LeBrun: Sabres Matt Moulson is not practicing today. GM Tim Murray said that Moulson hasn’t been traded.
  • Nick Kypreos: There are many people who believe that Ryan Kesler told the Canucks that he doesn’t want to play in Canada anymore if they are able to make a trade for him. He has a no-trade clause.
  • Josh Rimer: Ben Scrivens signs a two-year deal with the Oilers worth $4.6 million total according to his agent.
  • Detroit Red Wings: GM Ken Holland said that Pavel Datsyuk and Stephen Weiss won’t play tomorrow. Ansar Khan: Datsyuk is not skating today and hasn’t since leaving Thursday’s game.
  • Scott Powers: Blackhawks coach Joel Quenneville said that Marian Hossa will be out for two to three weeks.
  • Pierre LeBrun: On waivers today: Devan Dubnyk (NSH), Frazer McLaren (TOR), Chuck Kobasew (PIT) and Philip Larsen (EDM).
  • Hope Smoke: Leafs Claude Loiselle: ”We waived McLaren to give us some flexibility for the trade deadline”
  • Jim Matheson: The Flyers do have the assets to land Ryan Kesler. Would they do Sean Couturier or Brayden Schenn and Samuel Morin?
  • Rich Chere: Martin Brodeur: ”As of now there is nothing going on.”
  • Mark Spector: Spector keeps hearing Martin Brodeur and the Wild being linked.
  • Hope Smoke: Doug MacLean: “Here is what you have to do with Vanek. You have to entice Snow to take prospects and not the big draft picks”
  • Joe Haggerty: The Bruins are looking for a top-four defenseman for the left side. They could use depth on the right side. Dustin Byfuglien is intriguing, but he’s a right shot.
  • Rich Chere: Devils coach Pete DeBoer said that both Damien Brunner and Bryce Salvador could play on Tuesday.

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Morning Rumors: Predators, Blues, Blackhawks, Top 5 Defenseman and Barkov Injury

  • Flutuo Shinzawa of the Boston Globe: The Predators are only four points out of eighth spot. Pending UFA David Legwand has a no-movement clause and could be a good addition for the Blues or Blackhawks if the Predators look to move him. The Blues are missing Vladimir Sobotka and the Blackhawks could use a No. 2 center. The Panthers have plenty of forwards that could be traded. With so many teams having salary cap issues this year and possible next, they might have to eat some salary like they did with Kris Versteeg. Players that have contracts running through next season: Tomas FleischmannTomas KopeckySean BergenheimScottie Upshall, and Shawn Matthias.
  • Tim Kavanagh of ESPN: Top 5 Defenseman who are rumored to be available. 1. Dustin Byfuglien – some think the Bruins could be a landing spot, though GM Peter Chiarelli said they weren’t looking to make a deal like that. 2. Andrew MacDonald 3. Christian Ehrhoff 4. Trevor Daley 5. Jake Gardiner.
  • George Richards: Finnish doctors saying that Panthers Aleksander Barkov will be out for four to six weeks with a knee injury.

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Morning Rumors III: Parenteau, Subban, Gagner, Yakupov, Stewart, Kings, Senators, Buyers and Sellers

  • Mike Chambers of the Denver Post: Avalanche’s P.A. Parenteau was a healthy scratch for the second straight game. He has two more years left at $4 million per. Rumors that the Canadiens may be willing to trade P.K. Subban for Parenteau, prospect(s) and draft picks. Coach Patrick Roy said that Parenteau is not in the doghouse, he just doesn’t want to break up the top lines and that Parenteau doesn’t fit a fourth line role.
  • David Staples of the Edmonton Journal: SportsNets Doug MacLean on whether the Oilers should trade Sam Gagner or Nail Yakupov:

    “Gagner and Yakupov have really been a real dilemma for this organization. They don’t know what to do with them. -29 for Yakupov. Talented kid. You know he’s going to score a lot of goals in the NHL before he’s done. Gagner, solid, solid. People don’t know if he’s a #2 or a #3 (centre).

    “Here’s the problem. You got to stay with these guys. You’re not going to get value (in a trade). It’s disappointing the way they’ve performed, but you are not going to get value. So stay with them.”

    It was brought up that the Oilers need to get bigger, tougher. MacLean agreed, but added:

     ”You bring in complementary guys to play with them. I’ve said it for years. You take their Top Six, and you make it a Top Nine because you fill in with quality 2-way guys. But if you start trading these guys, you are not getting value and you got a disaster on your hands.”

  • Craig Custance: Some GMs are more interested in making ‘hockey trades’ and than ‘rental trades.’ Blues Chris Stewart is an intriguing name but he carries a $4.15 million salary cap hit next season.
  • Dennis Bernstein: The Kings are looking for a left winger and a defenseman. At this point, they would have to overpay to get either.
    Frank Provenzano of ESPNPotential SellersNashville Predators - David Legwand, Matt Cullen, Colin Wilson and Ryan Ellis. Washington Capitals - Troy Brouwer, Joel Ward, Jason Chimera, Eric Fehr and Martin Erat. Winnipeg Jets - Dustin Byfuglien, Evander Kane, Olli Jokinen and Devin Setoguchi. Potential BuyersTampa Bay Lightning - roster depth. Colorado Avalanche - Top-four defenseman. St. Louis Blues - Stanley Cup caliber goalie.
  • James Pagnall of the Ottawa Citizen: The Senators have new TV deal in place the could bring in between $20 and $30 million over the next 12 years. Senators owner Eugene Melnyk:

    “This puts us on a solid footing,” Melnyk said in reference to the broadcasting deals. “We are going to be competitive in spending on players. If I need to spend an extra $2 million to $3 million (on unrestricted free agents) to make the playoffs, it’s a no-brainer. I’ll do it.”

    “We’re still going to spend wisely,” he said, suggesting he does not intend to shell out the maximum permitted under salary cap rules.

    “Just because you have extra money in your pocket, doesn’t mean you go out and spend it,” he said. His philosophy of patiently — and inexpensively — developing raw talent remains front and centre in the Senators organization.

  • Bruce Garrioch of the Ottawa Sun: Senators president Cyril Leeder on their $400 million broadcaster deal with Bell Media.

    “It allows you to get in there and duke it out with the big guys,” Leeder told the Sun. “When you have a strong base of revenues from your corporate partners and your fanbase, that makes you stronger.

    “It allows you to compete with (teams like) Toronto, New York and Vancouver.”

    The Senators are currently 26th in spending, ahead of only the Flames, Avalanche, Islanders and Panthers.

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Morning Rumors: Sabres, Blues, Wild, Caps, Coyotes, Habs, Flames, Kings, Rangers, Leafs and More

  • Bruce Garrioch of the Ottawa Sun: There is increasing talk that the Sabres will trade goalie Ryan Miller, and it could happen before the Olympic Break. The goalie market is limited though. The Blues are mentioned, but GM Doug Armstrong continually backs Jaroslav Halak. The Wild could be another landing spot as Josh Harding is out indefinitely due to MS complications. If the Sabres are asking for a Miller is reasonable, they might be interested. The asking price could be a player, prospect and pick.

    Capitals GM George McPhee may be feeling the heat and has been calling GMs to see if he can make a deal to turn his team around. He doesn’t have a contract beyond this season. Martin Erat and Michal Neuvirth have asked for trades.

    Coyotes GM Don Maloney is getting calls on Radim Vrbata. The Coyotes won’t know what they want to do with him until they find out if he wants to re-sign or if they are out of the playoff race by the trade deadline.

    The Canadiens have been putting Brian Gionta’s name out there.

    The Flames have talked with Mike Cammalleri to see if he wants to re-sign.

    The Olympic roster freeze is Friday February 7th at 11:59 pm:

    “A lot of teams are nervous,” a league executive told Insider Trading. “I really think there are some teams that are in playoff races that want to make changes. You have to think there’s going to be some trades before players going to the Olympics because teams aren’t going to want to wait until March 5 to position themselves.”

    The Penguins, Kings and Sharks want to be active.

    The Islanders want to keep Thomas Vanek, but if he doesn’t want to re-sign, they’ll move him. Teams have called, but GM Garth Snow has shot down all offers so far.

    Jets GM Kevin Cheveldayoff has been working the phones. The Jets are playing better under Paul Maurice, but they are still talking to teams about potential deals. Jets trade options include: Andrew Ladd, Evander Kane and Dustin Byfuglien. The Jets may only move one of those players.

    The Coyotes, Kings and Canucks have called the Stars about Ray Whitney. Vernon Fiddler could also be dealt.

    Rangers Dan Girardi isn’t close to re-signing and could be on his way out.

    Maple Leafs Nazem Kadri’s name continues to be in the rumor mill with the emergence of Peter Holland.

  • Mike Harrington of the Buffalo News: Sabres GM Tim Murray wouldn’t say what will happen with any of their pending UFAs, but did say that he’s casually talked with Ryan Miller, Matt Moulson and Steve Ott. Murray did make it clear that they won’t be moved unless they get a significant return.

    “I told them not to believe everything they read or everything they’ve heard on the sports channels. But certainly their names are in play and we’ll see what happens but it doesn’t guarantee they’ll be moved at all. For me, it’s all about return. These are good players. So if the return was up to a certain point and not great and we then decide we want to talk to them about staying, then that’s an option too.”

    Murray said teams have contacted him to see what his plans are for the Sabres.

    “There’s been lots of interaction, a lot of early talking,” he said. “There’s been no real specifics. I think teams are just trying to feel us out, feel me out on what we want to do. There’s certainly been discussions. I’m not sure there’s any artificial deadline. I think people are in a wait-and-see mode, to tell you the truth.

    “People are concerned about injuries this far out. If a contending team makes their one big move and that guy is not available when he needs to be, there’s concern there from those teams. I’m really not sure a lot of teams want to pull off the big trade this far out. It could happen, but it doesn’t seem to me there’s any urgency right now.”

  • Jonas Siegel of TSN: Maple Leafs James Reimer wants to fight to get his No. 1 status back and has no intention of asking for a trade. Reimer will be a RFA at the end of the season and has arbitration rights. He could receive a raise and more than likely will be traded by next fall, if not sooner.
  • Fluto Shinzawa of the Boston Globe: The Penguins are tight up against the salary cap ceiling, so any deal will have to be money in, money out. Three defenseman trade targets for the Bruins could be Andrew MacDonald, Chris Phillips and Henrik Tallinder. It could be a quiet trade period as so many teams are up against the cap and have their own players re-sign this summer. Prices for rentals will be “stupid high” according to one executive. If Sabres GM Tim Murray is able to get another 1st round pick by trading any of Tallinder, Ryan Miller, Matt Moulson and Steve Ott, they could look to move one their current ones (their own, the new pick or the Islanders conditional 1st) for NHL ready player(s).
  • Dave Molinari of the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette: There was talk that the Penguins may look to move Simon Despres, but it sounds like they still think he has the potential to be an impact player.

    “Where he is right now, in terms of his career, he’s in a good spot,” Shero said. “In terms of the progression he’s made and his maturity, on and off the ice, I think that’s coming.

    “Even though he’s not [in the NHL now], we still believe he’s a very good prospect for us and will be an NHL player, for sure.”

    “In terms of our long-range plans, we’ve got some pretty good players here , and some good young players coming,” Shero said. “The good news is, he’s one of them.”

  • Adrian Dater via Sulia: Scouting the Avalanche and Lightning: Red Wings (2), Blue Jackets (GM Jarmo Kekalainen), Blackhawks, Penguins and Rangers. Dater has also heard John Mitchell’s name pop up in the rumor mill of late.

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Morning Rumors II: Byfuglien, Kane, Vanek, Coyotes and Green

  • Craig Custance of ESPN: Jets forward/defenseman Dustin Byfuglien has been receiving a lot criticism of late. Can a team win with Byfuglien as a major part of their core? Heading into yesterday he had three points in four games at forward under new coach Paul Maurice. Byfuglien prefers to play defense. He has two years left on his deal at $5.2 million per season. Jets GM Kevin Cheveldayoff has to look at the possibility of trading Byfuglien. One executive: “I think they have to,” he said. We may see more “hockey trades” this year compared to “rentals” due to so many teams close to the salary cap ceiling. Evander Kane would bring more back for the Jets, but they are still looking at the long-term picture and trading a 22-year old goal scorer doesn’t make sense. One fit for Byfuglien that was mentioned was the Bruins, who are looking for a top-four defenseman. The Jets may prefer to get roster players in a deal. If they are willing to trade for futures, it may make Byfuglien more attractive. He can submit a list of five teams that he won’t accept a trade too. One executive thinks he could bring the Jets a 1st round pick and an A-level prospect.

    “In my time, he’s the best power forward I’ve seen,” Versteeg said. “On the flip side, he’s one of the biggest, mobile, best defenseman I’ve seen, too.”

  • Arthur Staple of Newsday: Thomas Vanek understands the Islanders situation of wanting to know in the next week or two if he’d re-sign with the team. He also knows that if he doesn’t have an answer for them, he could be dealt. Vanek did say that even if he’s dealt, he’d consider returning on July 1st.

    “I know Garth gave up a lot to get me here, so if they feel they need to get something back (by the deadline), I understand,” Vanek told Newsday. “He’s been great, the team has been great. No one has put any pressure on me.

    “I know that we’re getting close [to the deadline] and that they want to know what I’m going to do. It’s a big decision that obviously isn’t just about me, it’s a big decision for my family, where we’re going to be.”

    There hasn’t been substantive talks between the two sides.

    “Even if they traded me, sure,” Vanek said. “I like it here, it’s a good group of guys. This would be a place I’d consider if it gets to July 1.”

  • Sarah McLellan of the Arizona Republic: There are not a lot of options at the moment, but the Coyotes are looking for a forward

    “I don’t want to trade a forward for another forward,” he said. “You’re always looking to upgrade, but we’re looking to add instead of give a forward to get a forward.”

  • Mike Wise of the Washington Post: Wise wonders if it’s time for the Capitals to trade defenseman Mike Green. They only have three players who are not under contract for next season. Green might be their only player that would bring them a good return, including a possible defensive defenseman. GM George McPhee is in the last year of his contract and may be looking to make a move to help save his job. Martin Erat still wants to be traded.

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