Kukla's Korner Hockey
from Mark Lazerus of the Chicago Sun-Times,
For months, Bowman has said he didn’t want to move any roster players, that he didn’t want to make a money-for-money trade, that he was going to be relatively quiet at the trade deadline.
Then Patrick Kane was injured. Now all bets are off, and all phone lines are open. It’s no longer a matter of if the Hawks will make a trade. It’s when. And how many.
“We’re getting pretty close,” a confident and unusually direct Bowman said. “But until it’s done, it’s not done.”
With Kane out, Bowman said he’s exploring all options. That means current roster players could be moved, not just picks and prospects. That means the Hawks will consider acquiring players that aren’t on expiring contracts. That means getting a forward or a defenseman, or both.
A source said the Hawks are particularly interested in Arizona forward Antoine Vermette and Columbus forward Cam Atkinson, both of whom are on expiring contracts. Edmonton defenseman Jeff Petry is another possibility. But Kane’s injury has opened roughly $6 million of salary cap relief, and also has opened the door to a more dramatic overhaul in anticipation of this summer’s looming cap crunch.
from Ed Willes of the Vancouver Province,
If the Vancouver Canucks have demonstrated one trait over their 45 years — it is this.
They will never, ever let their following get comfortable with their success. If we'd forgotten about that during their modest run of the last couple of weeks, it came rushing back in one hideous evening against the NHL's worst team.
It wasn't just that the Canucks lost to the Buffalo Sabres. It's that they surrendered six goals (including an empty-netter) to a team that had scored 20 fewer goals than any other NHL team. It's that they gave up two goals, including the game-winner, to Torrey Mitchell, who hadn't scored in 28 games. It's that they were unprofessional and unprepared from the first minute, when Yannick Weber took the game's only penalty — to the last minute, when Eddie Lack served up the insurance goal on a silver platter.
How do you explain this one? You can't, but isn't that always the beauty of the Canucks.
from Chris Johnston of Sportsnet,
The first thing you need to know about the Toronto Maple Leafs escape from salary cap jail is that it was the Columbus Blue Jackets who first proposed Thursday’s stunning David Clarkson for Nathan Horton swap.
In fact, the Leafs probably wouldn’t have even believed such a transaction was possible with Horton’s career in jeopardy because of a serious back injury.
However, they learned in recent days that Horton’s contract wasn’t insured and Columbus didn’t want to pay the veteran winger $26.1-million over the next five years to not play. Given that Toronto no longer wanted to pay Clarkson $27.5-million for the next five years to play, there was a perfect fit.
Everything basically came together in a little more than a day.
"The money lined up, which was a big part of it," said Toronto GM Dave Nonis.
from Scott Burnside of ESPN,
Five minutes of highlights this morning...
The Maple Leafs got rid of Clarkson's contract and the only thing it costs them is money, which they seem to print no matter what is happening with the team on the ice. That's an easy win and the Leafs haven't had a lot of wins, easy or otherwise, on the ice, so they might as well celebrate this one. All shots aside, though, it's a smart move for the Leafs to use their financial wherewithal to their advantage. It can't happen as often under a salary cap system, but it worked in this situation and it's a pretty good sign that the Maple Leafs were creative enough to find a way to escape their biggest contract mistake.
Scott Cullen of TSN where you can read more on the trade.
from Harvey Fialov of the Sun-Sentinel,
After years of selling off their top players before the trade deadline, Panthers General Manager Dale Tallon sent a strong message to the fans and his young team that he is committed to make the playoffs this season when he acquired nine-time All-Star forward Jaromir Jagr from the Devils Thursday afternoon.
Jagr, 43, the active leader in points (1,784), games played (1,530), assists (1,068), goals (716), plus/minus (+284) and power-play goals (202) cost the Panthers a second-round pick in June and a conditional third-round pick in 2016. This season, Jagr, a sure-fire Hall of Famer, has 11 goals and 18 assists in 57 games.
“That we’re buyers and committed to winning,’’ Tallon said was his message. “[Owner Vinnie Viola] and we all said we want to win a championship. We’re putting the pieces together step by step. Hopefully, Jaromir can lead these young guys to the promised land. It’s a win-win for us."
from Jim Matheson of the Edmonton Journal,
- The Capitals are looking for a third-pairing rental to go with John Carlson, Mike Green, Matt Niskanen, Brooks Orpik and Karl Alzner. Washington is more interested in a winger to play with Ovechkin and Backstrom, though. I’d give Chris Stewart a look as a rental.
- It’s no secret Buffalo Sabres GM Tim Murray loves Colorado Avalanche forward Ryan O’Reilly, who could easily be moved this summer because the Avs don’t want to pay him $6 million a season. As Mike Harrington of the Buffalo News surmises, Avs coach Patrick Roy used to coach Sabres first-round centre Mikhail Grigorenko in junior in Quebec City; he’s yet to make an impact in Buffalo. The Sabres are also growing exasperated with big Russian teenage defenceman Nikita Zadorov for off-ice issues (missing a flight, sleeping in for a practice).
- Sounds a little screwy, but there are some scouts who feel the one young defenceman the Ducks might trade is Cam Fowler, who doesn’t have Hampus Lindholm’s all-around game or Sami Vatanen’s offensive bang. Fowler is good, for sure, but scouts wonder if Canadian junior team star Theodore could replace Fowler in time, and they might consider moving Fowler for a forward who could play with Ryan Getzlaf and Corey Perry.
First topic was the Jagr trade to Florida then what will the Blackhawks do.
Next up was the Capitals looking to add offense.
The Leafs were brought up and what can they do (segment was taped before the Clarkson trade). Then the Bruins were the next topic.
Up next was the Jeff Petry situation in Edmonton.
Next was a spitting incident with Cal Clutterbuck, the league looked into it but no evidence.
COLUMBUS, OHIO --- The Columbus Blue Jackets have acquired right wing David Clarkson from the Toronto Maple Leafs in exchange for right wing Nathan Horton, club General Manager Jarmo Kekalainen announced today.
Clarkson, 30, has registered 112 goals and 84 assists for 196 points with 955 penalty minutes in 544 career NHL games with the Maple Leafs and New Jersey Devils, while adding 5-9-14 and 79 penalty minutes in 44 career Stanley Cup Playoff games. He has collected 10-5-15 and 92 penalty minutes in 58 games this season.
“David Clarkson has been a 30-goal scorer in the NHL who will bring added character and leadership to our group and we believe he will be a valuable contributor to our team,” said Kekalainen. “While we are excited to welcome David to the Blue Jackets, it is also difficult that Nathan’s time here has ended prematurely due to his injury situation. He is a tremendous person and we wish him and his family all the best in the future.”
Toronto release below...
Peter Forsberg had his sweater raised to the rafters today in his hometown rink, the Fjällräven Center.
Watch below and it is in Swedish.
About Kukla's Korner Hockey
Paul Kukla founded Kukla’s Korner in 2005 and the site has since become the must-read site on the ‘net for all the latest happenings around the NHL.
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