Kukla's Korner Hockey
by Paul on 04/01/12 at 01:01 AM ET
from Jim Matheson of the Edmonton Journal,
• Dallas captain Brenden Morrow is finding himself in the same boat as Ryan Smyth. The both have a warrior mentality, and have both taken tons of punishment around the blue-paint over the years. Neither was an A-plus skater coming into the league. With the game so fast now, it’s harder for both heart-and-soul guys. Nobody would be surprised if the Stars, looking to get younger under GM Joe Nieuwendyk’s regime, go to Morrow (who had neck and back problems this season) this summer with a list of teams that might want his leadership, and move him.
• Los Angeles goalie Jonathan Bernier is on Tampa Bay’s radar for next season, but the Kings won’t deal Jonathan Quick’s backup before they sign a veteran this summer, preferably somebody who has been a starter somewhere else. The Kings need a winger with some speed.
• While Columbus GM Scott Howson has been on the hot seat for months, it seems inconceivable they would let him try and trade Rick Nash, the face of their franchise, if they weren’t bringing Howson back. Nash is getting dealt because he’s in a rut in Columbus. He needs a change of scenery, and this is the best chance for the Blue Jackets to get three or four pieces to start over. I could be dead wrong, but Howson seems on much safer footing than Gauthier was. He is also considerably better liked.
• The Stars, with new owner Tom Galardi willing to spend dough this summer, will go after Ryan Suter and Zach Parise, but still think Detroit has the inside track on Parise, who’s absolutely No. 1 on their shopping list (how about Parise and Pavel Datsyuk on the same line?), with Suter No. 2 as they look to Nick Lidstrom’s eventual retirement. One thing Detroit has that other teams don’t: a winning tradition.
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