Posts Tagged Shawn Thornton

The Offseason “Losers” So Far Are ….

Written by Greg Stamper, who can be found on twitter @g_stamp91.

In part one of this article (which can be found here) we took a look at some of the teams that were blessed with a solid offseason and deserved their title as winners.

It’s time to take a look and see which teams have had far less success and are deemed this year’s losers; some of which may surprise you.

Part 2: Losers

Washington Capitals

One thing is for certain, Washington tried.

Although the Capitals managed to sign the top defenseman available on this year’s market in Matt Niskanen, it’s widely believed that they massively overpaid in the process of doing so. For the time being, this deal should work in the Caps favour, but, near the end of the massive seven-year, $40.25 million deal when Niskanen still has a $5.75 million cap hit in his mid-30’s, it then might really come back to bite them.

Washington didn’t stop there though.

On top of Niskanen, the Caps also elected to sign his 33 year-old (34 when the season starts) teammate from Pittsburgh, defenseman Brooks Orpik, to a five-year, $27.5 million deal. This move quite simply is the reason for Washington making the loser section of this list; it is totally insane.

Losing Mikhail Grabovski and not replacing him didn’t help the Caps either.

The fact that the signing of back-up goaltender Justin Peters to a two-year, $1.9 million deal appears to be the best / least risky move the Caps made shows just how rough this offseason was.

Read the rest of this entry »

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NHL Rumors I: Kesler, Stastny, Wild, Iginla, Thornton, Pouliot and Oilers

  • Pierre LeBrun of ESPN: Sources saying the list of teams interested in trading for Ryan Kesler has grown. The Ducks and Blackhawks have been the front-runners all week, but despite more teams interested, does he want to go there?

    As of late yesterday afternoon, about 15 teams inquired about Paul Stastny. The Blues, Jets and Blackhawks are among the teams. Jets interest is legit. Not sure how the Blackhawks could afford Stastny as they are telling teams he’s not looking for a paycut from his $6.66 million cap hit this past season.

    With Dany Heatley’s $7.5 million cap hit off the books, Wild GM Chuck Fletcher can get back in the game.

    “Yes, it’s nice to be able to get involved more, I spoke with several agents yesterday,” Fletcher told ESPN.com on Thursday morning.

    Sources say Thomas Vanek was among the players Fletcher talked too. As of late yesterday afternoon, sources say eight to 10 teams called on Vanek.

    “If we don’t re-sign [winger] Matt Moulson and [defenseman] Clayton Stoner, then we have to replace those players,” Fletcher said of his two pending UFAs. “In an ideal world, we’re looking for a guy who can chip in offensively up front and a fifth/sixth defenseman. Obviously there’s options in both those areas where the price tag might vary a little bit.”

  • Joe Haggerty: Bruins pending UFA Jarome Iginla’s agent has started talking to other teams about potentially playing there next season. John Shannon: The only way Iginla remains in Boston is if they move out some bodies. Would it be worth trading Johnny Boychuk or Gregory Campbell just to keep Iginla?
  • Joe Haggerty: Several teams have shown interest in Shawn Thornton.
  • Benoit Lavoie: About 10 teams have shown interest in Rangers Benoit Pouliot. He is looking for a long-term deal.
  • News 1130 Sports: Oilers GM Craig MacTavish: “Size is a factor. It’s no secret we play in a big conference, and we need size to compete.”
  • Cap Geek: Canadiens Andre Markov received a full no-trade clause for this season, and a modified no-trade clause for his final two seasons. Hurricanes Ron Hainsey received a modified no-trade clause.

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NHL Rumors III: Morris, Coyotes, Thornton, Engelland, Hiller, Weaver and McClement

  • Sarah McLellan: The Coyotes will be moving on from Derek Morris, GM Don Maloney: “We wanted to change our mix.”

  • Sarah McLellan: The Coyotes called on pending UFAs yesterday. They are looking to add a scoring winger or two, improve their speed and team defending.

  • Joe Smith: Lightning GM Steve Yzerman said he contacted some defensemen but wouldn’t say who.

  • Damien Cox: There is interest in Shawn Thornton. Douglas Murray may find it difficult in getting an offer.

  • Ryan Rishaug: Six teams have shown interest in Deryk Engelland. At least four teams are interested in Jonas Hiller.

  • Ryan Rishaug: Sources saying that the Oilers reached out to Engelland and are likely to have further talks.

  • News 1130 Sports: The Canucks played phone tag with Jonas Hiller’s agent, who also represents Deryk Engelland and Joe Vitale.

  • Jimmy Murphy: Sources saying Mike Weaver has talked with teams, but the Canadiens still remain high on his list.

  • Jonas Siegel: Jay McClement’s agent said there haven’t been talks with the Maple Leafs and there are none planned as of yet.

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NHL Rumors IV: Bruins, Cammalleri, Flyers, Nikitin and Gaborik

  • Joe Haggerty of CSNNE: Bruins GM Peter Chiarelli confirmed yesterday that they won’t be going “full force” into free agency and they don’t have any meetings with potential free agents set up for this week. Their bonus overage penalty of $4.7 million has handcuffed them.

    “I look at it there are good players available, but we’re not going to go full force into free agency. We’ll probably take a step back, and look at what may be lesser deals – meaning not the high profile deals that may be available – partially due to salary cap reasons, and partially due to team chemistry reasons.”

    The Bruins have just less than $9 million to re-sign Jarome Iginla, Torey Krug, Reilly Smith and Matt Bartkowski, along with finding a Shawn Thornton replacement and a backup goaltender.

  • Marc Antoine Godin: Bruins GM Peter Chiarelli said they are not in the market for any centers.
  • Randy Sportak of the Calgary Sun: Flames GM Brad Treliving on Mike Cammalleri: “No update other than talks continue.” Treliving wouldn’t comment on whether they would uses their compliance buyout.
  • Sam Carchidi of the Philadelphia Inquirer: After the Scott Hartnell-Umberger trade, Flyers GM Ron Hextall may now be looking for a left winger for their top line. Free agent targets, if they can find the cap space, could include Matt Moulson, Mike Cammalleri, Benoit Pouliot and Mason Raymond.
  • Bob Stauffer: Contract talks between the Oilers and Nikita Nikitin are “on-going.” Aaron Portzline: Talks between the Oilers and Nikitin should continue into today.
  • Jon Rosen: The Kings and Marian Gaborik made some progress over the weekend, but there is still some work to be done.

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NHL Rumors VIII: Leafs To No. 1? Stralman, Smith, Kesler, Spezza, and Thornton

  • Gare Joyce of SportsNet: The Panthers No. 1 pick might be available, but they won’t move it for anything along the lines of the rumored Maple Leafs No. 8, Jake Gardiner and Nazem Kadri. The Leafs would then draft Aaron Ekblad. One senior executive:

    “I get the sense that [the No. 1 pick] is out there. [Pathers GM] Dale Tallon has all kinds of young players in the organization and wants to make the playoffs sooner rather than later. Still, Kadri in the package won’t get it done. JVR [LW James van Riemsdyk] might if he’s with the pick and Gardiner… or he might not. Tallon will wait it out to see what the best offer is. It’s a big one to sit tight and close on the floor but I wouldn’t rule it out.”

  • Helene St. James of the Detroit Free Press: The Red Wings are looking for a top-four defenseman, and could look Rangers Anton Stralman. Stralman is coming off a two-year, $3.4 million deal and could be looking for at least $3 million a season.
  • Scott Powers of ESPN: The Blackhawks and Ben Smith have had initial contract extension talks.

    “We’ve had a couple of preliminary conversations with the Hawks but that’s it at this point,” Smith’s agent Jerry Buckley of Buckley Sports Management wrote in an email on Wednesday. “I expect to continue conversations with them in the near future.”

  • Hope Smoke: Nick Kypreos: “The name I hear is if Stl & Van were going to put anything together for Kesler is TJ Oshie” … “Berglund’s available. I think if you saw an Ott-Stl deal with Spezza you’d see Berglund involved in it for sure” … “Same thing with the Leafs and Kadri. The Leafs have been asking about Berglund as well”
  • Jimmy Murphy: Sense from sources is that Shawn Thornton and the Panthers make sense.

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NHL Rumors XII: Campbell, Boyle, Kesler, Maple Leafs and Bruins

  • Andy Strickland: Panthers Brian Campbell apparently wants out of Florida. He has two years left at just over $7 million.
  • Pierre LeBrun: Islanders GM Garth Snow said that he’s shopping the rights to Dan Boyle. Darren Dreger: Boyle was intrigued by the Islanders offer and interest in him, but is still undecided. He’s holding firm on a two year contract.
  • Joe Smith: Dan Boyle may not be a top pairing guy anymore, but he would help out the Lightning’s power play. Boyle’s agent has said that Boyle would be interested in returning to Tampa. He still has a home there. The question would be if the role and money would be a fit for both sides.
  • Ben Kuzma of the Vancouver Province: The Ducks and Penguins were after Ryan Kesler at the deadline. Would think that the Flyers could have some interest. Kesler would look good beside Patrick Kane in Chicago.
  • James Mirtle of the Globe and Mail: If the Maple Leafs were to not re-sign Dave Bolland and to fill their fourth line with inexpensive useful players, they could have $13 million in cap space. Could use that money to get a solid center, a top-four defenseman, two depth forwards and a backup goalie. If they bought out Tim Gleason, they could increase their cap space up to $16 million. Pending RFAs in James Reimer and Cody Franson could be traded.
  • Joe Haggerty of CSNNE: The Bruins have told Shawn Thornton that they won’t be bringing him back. Some candidates to replace Thornton on their roster next season: Jordan Caron, Justin Florek, Craig Cunningham, Matthew Lindblad, Bobby Robins and Anthony Camara.

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NHL Rumors V: Devils, Boyle, O’Reilly, Thornton, Brookbank and Regin

  • Richard Chere of the Star-Ledger: Devils GM Lou Lamoriello said yesterday that they are undecided if they will use a compliance buyout on someone. There is speculation that they could buyout Anton Volchenkov (2-years, $8.5 million) or Bryce Salvador (1-year, $3.25 million).

    “Absolutely not. You don’t use something just for the sake of using it. If it is used it will be for the right reasons, but that’s not saying it will be used,” Lamoriello said.

  • Stephen Lorenzo of the NY Daily News: Brian Boyle wants to stay with the Rangers, but it’s looking like he would have to stay in the same role, getting 12 to 14 minutes and being on the top penalty-killing unit.

    “Hopefully I can stay… I think everybody knows how I feel about New York and the New York Rangers and what that means to me,” Boyle said. “But I want to make an impact going forward. I want to have more responsibility sometimes. There’s a lot that goes into that. But I think everybody knows where I want to be. If it can all work out like that, we’ll see.”

  • Chris Nichols: Ryan O’Reilly’s agent, Pat Morris, said that O’Reilly would like to stay in Colorado, but a long-term deal is not close. Nick Cotsonika: Morris added that O’Reilly could go with a two-year deal or go year-to-year for the next two seasons and then become a UFA.
  • Hope Smoke: Darren Dreger: “Because of the quality of the character of the man [S.Thornton] absolutely there is going to be tonne of teams that show interest” … “On a one or two year deal why wouldn’t you?” … “I’d be a little surprised if Leafs had keen interest in S.Thornton but they’ll kick tires to see what interest Shawn might have”
  • Chris Kuc: There is still a chance that the Blackhawks bring Sheldon Brookbank back.
  • Mark Lazerus: The Blackhawks and pending UFA Peter Regin haven’t had talks yet. Regin hopes to remain with the team, but he realizes it’s a long-shot. They should talk before the draft.

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NHL Rumors VI: Penguins, Bruins and Maple Leafs

  • Will DePaoli of Insider Pittsburgh Sports: Penguins GM Jim Rutherford:

    “Some people came after me today and there’s ideas out there,” said Rutherford, per Sportsnet’s Chris Johnston. “I haven’t been throwing any ideas out, but I’ll listen. Obviously there’s going to be some new players there because just the position we’re in with the cap.”

    The Maple Leafs are said to be one of the teams that has checked in on James Neal. Rutherford doesn’t have a mandate to trade Kris Letang. Re-signing Matt Niskanen won’t be easy, but the likelihood of it happening would increase if they could clear some cap space out. Rutherford won’t bring in an enforcer to play two or three minutes. Upgrading their bottom-six is a priority, especially their bottom-three. Rutherford is comfortable with Marc-Andre Fleury in net.

  • Dave Molinari of the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette: Penguins GM Rutherford:

    “I’d prefer to [clear some cap space], but I’m not going to look at it as being ‘urgent,’ ” he said. “I’m not going to do it just to do it.”

    On their blueline:

    “We have to look at what we think we have as a top four or five,” he said. “If we get a comfort level with that, I’m not sure we have to bring anyone in right away.

    On trade calls:

    “Teams are going to be calling,” he said. “They always do. If we could get a little more grit up front to be able to be prepared for a couple of those teams in the East that are a little tougher to play, I may make a deal sooner than later.”

  • Joe Haggery of CSNNE: The Bruins are focusing on Jarome Iginla contract talks before they turn to their other free agents. Both sides are trying to close a deal. The Bruins have about $9 million for three forwards, two defensemen and a backup goalie. If/when they get Iginla’s deal done, they’ll turn to RFAs Matt Bartkowski, Torey Krug and Reilly Smith. Source said the Bruins haven’t had contact with pending UFA Shawn Thornton.
  • Jonas Siegel of TSN: Leafs GM Dave Nonis on the draft:

    “You’ve got a pretty good chance of getting a good player at eight or four,” he said. “For us to move up the price tag would have to reflect that fact.”

    “I wouldn’t say it’s a priority that we’re going to go for the most skilled player,” Nonis explained, “but I think the players that are going to be available in the top eight by and large are skill players so because of that fact there’s a good chance that’s what you end up with.”

    The Leafs have held preliminary talks with Dave Bolland. Nonis wouldn’t rule out the return of Mason Raymond, Nik Kulemin, Bolland and Jay McClement. Leo Komarov could be bought back at the right price.

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NHL Rumors I: Bruins Could Be Looking At Trades … Brodeur Unlikely For Leafs

  • Joe Haggerty of CSNNE: Bruins Johnny Boychuk is entering the final season of his deal that pays him $3.67 million and will be looking for a big raise on his next deal. The current range for him could be $4.5 to $5 million over six years. The Bruins could look at moving him this summer. He has a no-trade clause with a list of 15 teams that he can’t be traded too. The Bruins will be tight to the cap next season and they’ll have to give Carl Soderberg and David Krejci new deals next year. The Bruins need to be cautious when players like Alex Edler and Keith Yandle are being mentioned.
  • Joe Haggerty of CSNNE: Sources saying the Bruins could be active on the trade market leading up to free agency. Brad Marchand ($4.5 million) and/or Johnny Boychuk ($3.67 million) could be on the move due to the teams salary cap situation and their high value. The Bruins have about $9 million in cap space to find a right winger for David Krejci and Milan Lucic if they don’t bring back Jarome Iginla and to re-sign free agents Reilly Smith, Torey Krug, Matt Bartkowski and Shawn Thornton. They also need to find a backup goaltender.
  • Hope Smoke: Darren Dreger: “Brodeur in Toronto would be interesting. Marty is looking at the reality of being a backup but in the right circumstance” … “If Brodeur is willing to be a backup than he wants to be on a contender. I don’t think the Leafs are an option at this time”

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NHL Rumors II: Markov, Bruins, Selanne, Regier and Flames

  • Joe Yerdon of Pro Hockey Talk: from Richard Labbe of La Presse and Chantal Ledoux. Andrei Markov’s agent, Sergei Berezin

    “We know what Habs management wants, and they know what Andrei wants,” Berezin said. “There are no surprises and I am optimistic in this case, the main reason being that I feel the team wishes to keep Andrei, and Andrei wants to remain with this team. That’s what’s important to understand. The rest are just details we need to work out.”

  • Renaud Lavoie: Andrei Markov is not close to signing a deal with the Canadiens.
  • Anthony Travalgia of the Boston Globe: Jarome Iginla hopes he’s able to remain with the Bruins.

    “It’s a great group and I hope to be able to come back and I know it’s something that I hope that works and there’s a deal there for everyone. But I know the Bruins need to look at what they want to do and whatever, but yeah, I really enjoyed it and hope there’s something worked out there because I also think it’s a team that has a good of a shot as any to win and I think that next year the team can have that.”

    The Bruins will have to decide if they want to bring back Shawn Thornton.

    “I am hoping I am back. I don’t know,” Thornton said at breakup day. “I haven’t had my meetings yet, but if not I am still going to be in the community. I am still going to be here. This is where we live now. This is home. That stuff will not change. I’ll be here, trying to get back when I can. I love it here.”

    The Bruins have six defenseman already under contract for next season and have trade deadline acquisitions in pending UFAs in Corey Potter and Andrej Meszaros. It wouldn’t be a surprise if either Matt Bartkowski or Torey Krug is with another team next season.

    Backup goalie Chad Johnson could be let go as they have Niklas Svedberg and Malcolm Subban on the way.

  • Daren Milard: Talked with Teemu Selanne who said he will talk to Jokerit of the KHL next week but thinks he’s done.
  • Elliotte Friedman: The Coyotes are close to bringing in a new assistant GM for Don Maloney and it could be Darcy Regier.
  • Sean Kelso: The Flames didn’t renew the contracts of their AHL coaches Troy Ward and Robbie Ftorek.

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