Kukla's Korner Hockey
by Paul on 06/29/14 at 05:04 PM ET
from Ken Warren of the Ottawa Citizen,
In the Senators perfect world, Spezza would have been dealt at the NHL draft for a package of players and prospects that the organization could sell as the next stage for the franchise. But when a possible deal with Nashville fell through because the Predators were on Spezza’s 10-team no trade list, the Senators are in limbo.
As a result, there’s plenty of uncertainty about the normal free agency decisions on what holes need to be filled, how wide owner Eugene Melnyk is willing to open his wallet and how to proceed with players who have one year remaining on their contracts.
That latter group includes Bobby Ryan, Clarke MacArthur, Marc Methot and Craig Anderson. After Spezza’s wish for a trade – the speculation is he made the request after failing to receive a commitment the team was willing to spend more freely in in pursuit of the Stanley Cup – those four are watching closely to see the next direction of the franchise.
“I don’t know, and that’s the problem,” Murray acknowledged, when asked about whether Spezza’s situation will effect his free agency options. “Always part of your decision is what can you spend and where does it fit and what do you get in return for a certain player.
“If you don’t know that, it’s harder.”
added 5:14pm, from Bruce Garrioch of the Ottawa Sun,
The Senators will likely spend in the $56-to-$57 million range next season which means there isn’t a whole lot of cash to play with in this case. The club has about $51 million committed — including Spezza’s $7 million cap hit.
A left winger that would interest the Senators is Matt Moulson of the Wild, but the Sabres want to bring him back and he might be a guy who has a bit of a bidding war. The market is a little thin.
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