Archive for the ‘trade rumours’ Category

Veer West, Jeff.

It looks like one of the many sagas in Columbus will be coming to a somewhat satisfying end in the near future as it is becoming increasingly clear that Jeff Carter is just about a member of the Los Angeles Kings. That being said, a deal hasn’t been finalized and any players involved would have to pass a physical. This deal is reportedly close, but not quite there.

What is reportedly coming back to Columbus is Jack Johnson and a first round pick. Digest that for a moment.

I understand that Carter hasn’t had the most sparkling tenure in Columbus, but seriously? This is a guy who is just entering his physical prime, averages 30 goals per season, is probably going to score another 25 this year despite missing a boatload of games, and has gone deep in the playoffs before.

If I’m the Los Angeles Kings and I escape with Jeff Carter for the price of Jack Johnson and a first round pick, I’m laughing all the way to the bank. Not many teams can match a Kopitar-Richards-Carter-Stoll center combo and it would have some longevity to it yet.

All of this comes back to the question I asked last week: WHY ARE WE LEAVING THESE DECISIONS TO SCOTT HOWSON???

Columbus is going to trade one of the post-lockout era’s top scorers for an overpaid, one dimensional defenceman and a draft pick which may not be particularly high in the first round? I can’t get on board with this deal from a Columbus perspective if it stands pat at all.

Thoughts folks? I’m particularly interested in hearing what Kings/Jackets fans have to say. Comment, #BShelf, Facebook.

UPDATE: The deal is done, and has been confirmed by the Los Angeles Kings, with the expected Carter for Johnson and a first round pick being the exchange. Only thing standing in the way of it going through now is a failed physical which seems unlikely.

For all of the folks who are quick to bash the Richards-Carter combo, I find it very interesting how quickly the public perception of these guys changed. As of the end of the Stanley Cup finals this year we all thought Philadelphia had a great core to build around with Richards and Carter leading the way and the likes of JVR, Hartnell et al., filling in around them. Then all of a sudden they’re traded and they’re problem children? Come on. I have no doubt that Richards and Carter party as hard as they come, but to suggest that they were going to prevent Philadelphia from winning a Stanley Cup is ridiculous. The goaltending was the issue at the time, it was when they were traded and it still is today. Great job by the Flyers to control the media spin after blowing up their core, but the Kings are a better team after this trade and I have no doubt that they will provide a potent force for years to come.

Oh and they’re playing BEHIND Anze Kopitar, so yeah, that.

Keep up to date on trades with theScore’s trade tracker. We’re updated this thing at the drop of a hat so you know it’ll be up to date.

Take out Lloyd Christmas and slide in an aging, disgruntled Glen Sather, and you have this trade deadline day in a nutshell so far.

As is often the case in the early hours of the day when anyone who can type 140 characters or less is a certified source, there has been far more hype and speculation than substance. The centre of attention continues to be Brad Richards, and the muddled mess his situation has become in Dallas between his injury, his no-trade clause, the ownership questions, and his pending unrestricted free agency.

Today you’ll hear and read percentages being used to quantify reports, giving us the only day of the year when numbers lie more than a man coming home well after midnight. The odds of Richards landing in the Big Apple have bounced around all morning, but the latest line was set at “less than 50/50” by Larry Brooks of the New York Post.

Like a bad game of Clue, the plot is beginning to unravel. We know that Richards is indeed willing to waive is no-trade clause, but he’ll only do it for one team. Which lucky team is it? The Rangers. We think.

Oh and that sound you heard around 10:30 ET was hundreds of bloggers wheeling and falling off of their chairs after the news that something actually happened. The day’s first blockbuster sent Radek Dvorak to Atlanta.

The next sound you heard was faces hitting keyboards.

Don’t touch the hotstove, because it’s pretty damn hot

  • The Blackhawks are still kicking the tires on Ladislav Smid.
  • Tires will be quite sore by the end of the day from all of this reckless kicking. The Hurricanes are reportedly kicking Randy Jones’ tires and expressing interest in the Tampa Bay defenceman.
  • Vancouver is looking at Marty Reasoner and Zenon Konopka.
  • The Thrashers have been busy. In addition to signing Mart Stuart to a three-year contract extension worth $5.1 million, they’ve also been taking calls about Johnny Oduya.
  • In what makes for a great mental image of Bryan Murray, the Sens are “laying in the weeds” in regards to Filip Kuba and Chris Campoli.
  • More Bruce Garrioch musings: Talk won’t go away that the Capitals are interested in Kings goalie Jonathan Bernier.
  • Teams have been inquiring about Tim Connolly, but ESPN’s Matt Barnaby tweets that the Sabres aren’t actively shopping him yet.
  • Rest easy Red Wings fans, Ken Holland probably isn’t doing anything.

Now all Pittsburgh needs to do is bring back these atrocious uniforms.

This would usually be the part where I strut with my head held high, claiming to have called Alex Kovalev’s move back to Pittsburgh. That won’t happen for two reasons:

  1. Even a sleepwalking Eklund could have dreamed up this one.
  2. Shortly after informing you of Kovalev’s possible return to the place where his flowing golden locks became famous, I wrote this…

Kovalev could be re-united with the Steel City, but only if you enjoy taking stock in loosely sourced rumours. That practice pretty much fits alongside maple syrup and usage of the word “eh” as far as Canadian cultural identity goes around the trade deadline.

Kind of blew a hole in my foot there, eh?

On the day he turned 38, the master of hockey training videos teaching Pee Wee kids to flip pucks onto the top of the net while kneeling down at centre ice returns to the city where he once teamed up with Jaromir Jagr. Next on Ray Shero’s list is to coax Darius Kasparaitis out of retirement, fetch Jagr and Jiri Slegr from overseas, and strap some pads on Tom Barrasso’s legs.

He may also want to escort Kovalev to the nearest time machine, because this latest model of the former Russian sniper is a little old and dusty. Clearly no is expecting the Kovalev that skated around the Igloo circa 1998 and scored 347 points over 345 games during his first stint in Pittsburgh. But although his bones may be brittle, and his stride that much slower, Kovalev still possesses some offensive flare when he chooses to show it.

Since some fellows named Crosby and Malkin are still out of the lineup, the Pens will take whatever flare they can get their hands on right about now. Between today’s acquisition of Kovalev and the trade Sunday that added James Neal, the Pittsburgh offence welcomes two players with a combined 35 goals this season, showing everyone that it really does take two sets of hands to equal Sidney Crosby’s production.

Crosby has 32 goals, which amazingly still puts him fourth overall amongst the NHL’s leaders even though he’s now missed 21 games with his lingering concussion.

The rest of Thursday’s trades (so far)

  • Vertigo is defined as the feeling that “you or your environment are spinning.” It’s also defined as a very bad prognosis for your starting all-star goaltender. Right, Jonas Hiller? Heeding the doctor’s words, the Ducks traded backup goalie Curtis McElhinny to Tampa Bay for Dan Ellis. Add not being able to earn a starting job and remain on a team for the whole season to Dan Ellis’ list of problems.
  • Depleted all year on the back end with season-ending injuries to Andrei Markov and Josh Gorges, Montreal continued to acquire some much needed defensive depth. After adding Paul Mara earlier this week, the Habs sent Ben Maxwell and a fourth round pick to Atlanta for veteran blueliner Brent Sopel. Left winger Nigel Dawes, who has appeared in only nine games this season, was also shipped to Montreal in the deal.

Hot stove still burning bright

  • Just when the ridiculous Brad Richards trade proposals were starting to roll in, it looks like the injured centre will likely be staying in Dallas.
  • Both Paul Stastny and John Michael-Liles sat out practice today for the Avalanche. It’s Feb.24, so sitting out practice always means you’ll be practicing somewhere else soon. Always.
  • Bryan McCabe is well aware that he’s on the trade block, but the Panthers haven’t presented an offer or asked him to waive his no-trade clause.
  • Bryan Murray took a break from writing tickets out of town earlier this week to sit down with J.P Berry, Chris Phillips’ agent. Barry told ESPN’s Pierre LeBrun that the possibility of a contract extension for Phillips is still being discussed, and Murray is busy weighing the value of keeping the veteran defencman around for Ottawa’s re-build versus his value on the trade market.

Close your eyes for a moment, and roll your mind back to a trade deadline day morning two years ago, a time when the Florida Panthers were somewhat relevant, and so was Jay Bouwmeester. I want you to concentrate so hard that you can see Pierre McGuire’s face turning several shades of red as he fantasizes about Bouwmeester’s 1999 season with the Medicine Hat Tigers, and you can read Eklund’s eight tweets sending the defenceman in eight different directions.

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Over the next six days as we approach the trade deadline, we’ll scour the interwebs to bring you the latest in NHL trade fabrications and pipe-dreaming. If this post abruptly disappears rest assured it’s because the league’s general managers exhausted themselves in the weeks leading up to Feb. 28, resulting in the most brain-numbing deadline day in NHL history.

The year was 1998, a time when the youth of the nation were responsible for allowing Will Smith’s Gettin’ Jiggy With It to climb to the top 15 of the music charts, and Bill Clinton was denying any sexual relations with Monica Lewinsky. But in Pittsburgh, a moment that would trump any historical or pop culture event took place, a momentous development that had Pittsburghers partying like it was 1999.

Alex Kovalev became a Penguin.

Acquired on Nov. 25 in a blockbuster deal that sent Petr Nedved, Sean Pronger, and Chris Tamer to the Rangers, Kovalev came from New York and would score 159 goals over the next five seasons before going back to Broadway.

Now, Kovalev could be re-united with the Steel City, but only if you enjoy taking stock in loosely sourced rumours. That practice pretty much fits alongside maple syrup and usage of the word “eh” as far as Canadian cultural identity goes around the trade deadline.

With Evgeni Malkin done for the year and Sidney Crosby still on the shelf, the Penguins remain severely depleted offensively. Clearly replacing either of those superstars is impossible, but general manager Ray Shero’s acquisition of young winger James Neal from the Dallas Stars on Sunday begins to fill the gaping offensive void. The likely return of Chris Kunitz from a lower body injury also mends some wounds, but there’s nothing quite like rekindling an old flame.
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Smid To Nashville?

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There have been rumblings over the last few months that the Edmonton Oilers might be willing to send away defenceman Ladislav Smid, and over the last few days those rumblings have gotten very, very loud.  Edmonton sports reporters Ryan Rishaug and Dan Tencer have both tied Smid to the Nashville Predators, and the team has had scouts at the last few Oilers games.

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