Greetings all. Back from the draft and now await the sounding of the bell to signal the opening of free agency at noon EST Wednesday. Should be fun.
Does Chris Pronger still contribute enough other than bad penalty wise to really help Philly? Sure he's an upgrade from Hatcher but wasn't this team getting better by going younger to begin with?
Tom; I think part of the answer is in the fact the Ducks charged into the playoffs down the stretch and then knocked off top seed San Jose before nearly upending Detroit in the second round. Yes, Pronger isn't a spring chicken (he'll turn 35 right around the start of the season) but he's still a force and with youngsters like Braydon Coburn and Ryan Parent I think he's an important piece to the Flyers' puzzle.
Did the Flyers give up too much for Chris Pronger?
Harry; A good follow-up to the previous question. Nice work. They gave up a ton. But no one said winning a Cup was going to be easy or cheap. I don't think they'll miss Joffrey Lupul one bit but the two firsts and Luca Sbisa, well, that's another story. But that's why you stockpile assets like that so you can make the big move. Let's talk about this again next spring.
Hi scott, What should the Rangers do in the off season?
Harrison; Well, ideally I think they'd like to shed Wade Redden and Michal Roszival and their bloated salaries. And maybe Scott Gomez too. And they would like to have someone up front that might actually score a goal or two; Dany Heatley anyone? But those things are going to be hard to come by. They're still a playoff team in my books but not a team, right now, that has much of a chance to be a contender.
Hi Scott. Why on earth are the Bruins trying to trade Kessel? I know he wants more money but this is just heart breaking.
Joe; I think GM Peter Chiarelli is in a position of strength. He's got a good team on the cusp of greatness. He got a great deal in locking up David Krejci. He's got an asset in Kessel that he can afford to keep but may be able to parlay into a top puck-moving defenseman (ie. Tomas Kaberle) so I don't think it's a sense of having to move Kessel but rather exploring it. I'd say the chances are still 50-50 he's a Bruin for the forseeable future.
Hey Scott,Do you think the Islanders can compete for one of the last playoff spots with a healthy DiPietro and newcomer John Tavares?
Tom; No. Still way too many holes in the Islander line-up and frankly, a healthy DiPietro doesn't necessarily solve any of the Islanders' problems. I'd like to see more conisistency from DiPietro not to mention more healthy starts.
The B's have been taking a public stance that they'd match any offer for Kessel, but do you really think they'd match a Vanek or even Penner type offer? Woul that mean Ryder, Sturm and/or Bergeron would have to be moved?
John; Interesting question. I think the chances of any GM doing a Kevin Lowe and making that kind of offer sheet with the uncertainty surrounding the cap and it's potential decline in 2010-11 are slim indeed.
What are the chances that the Red Wings get Jay Bouwmeester?
Will Hossa be traded before Wednesday? If so, to where and for whom?
Jeff; I think the chances of Hossa remaining in Detroit are slim. That said I also think it's possible GM Ken Holland will try and find a taker for Hossa's rights in the next day or two. Maybe Edmonton? Or Montreal?
Are their any East teams that would be interested in an aging Chris Chelios?
Doug; Can't imagine it really. Think if there is a landing place for Chelios it will be Chicago at the minimum.
Are the Sabres looking to make any moves this offseason to beef up their forward lines or get some more toughness on D?
Owais; How are things in Sterling today? The Sabres are traditionally very conservative when it comes to things like free agency and the trade deadline. That's not likely to change this summer. Look for GM Darcy Regier to wait maybe even into August to find a couple of pieces to fill in up front and along the blue line. This team's chances, as they always do, ride on the evolution of its homegrown talent.
do you know if the tampa bay lighting will trade vincent lecavilaertoday or tomarrow
Evan; Honestly I have no sense, now, about whether the Bolts want to move their captain or not. Rumors that Len Barrie, one of the two warring owners of the team, had shot down a deal were false, sources told my colleague Pierre LeBrun. I still wouldn't be surprised to see him on the move before his no-trade clause kicks in July 1.
With the new GM and new coach in Minnesota with the philosophy changing will the Wild attract more big name players?
Tim; I think the addition of Chuck Fletcher as GM and Todd Richards as head coach is a big step toward changing the culture in Minnesota. About time, too. But it will take time. These will be interesting days for Fletcher who has some money to spend and a giant need for offense up front. Does he take a run at the Sedins? How about Dany Heatley? Maybe Daniel Briere? Whatever he does it will go a long way to making Minnesota a more attractive destination for top-line players.
Do you think Steve Sullivan or Martan Havlat will get decent deals, or will their injury history force them to accept short contracts and prove they're able to stay healthy?
Doug; Good question. Our sources tell us Sullivan and the Predators are far apart on a new deal and it's based mostly on term. Likewise Chicago and Havlat may not get together on a deal given the fact he is among the NHL's more brittle players. The fact is, both are talented players who have a history of consistent point production when they are healthy. Whether it's Chicago or Nashville or someone else, it's a roll of the dice for sure.
Hey Scott,Any word yet on which team Swedish goalie Gustavvson (spelling) has chosen? I'm hoping it's my Stars, but I'm fearing Toronto might have the upper hand.
Jameson; No word yet. I spoke to Gustavsson's agent at the draft yesterday and it might take past July 1. Interesting buzz for a guy who's never faced an NHL shot yet.
Do you expect an NHL team to demote an overpaid but good player to the minors to get a contract off the books despite the future ramifications?
Henry; You won't have to look far to see that happening come October unless the Rangers can unload Wade Redden and/or Michal Rozsival. That said there are only a handful of teams; Philly, Toronto, the Rangers, Detroit (although they never seem to have those kinds of contracts) that could afford to bury those kinds of deals. But it's going to happen given some of the deals that are out there hanging around teams' necks.
what do you expect San Jose to do?
Kit; Rumors were persistent that GM Doug Wilson was trying to move Ryane Clowe at the draft and I think it's a matter of time before Patrick Marleau is on the move. They're also in the hunt for Gustavsson, the aforementioned Swedish free agent netminder. The challenge for Wilson is to make enough changes to keep the team a contender without setting them back.
Where am I playing next year?
Jack; How's your Russian? Just kidding. Sort of. Ottawa would love to have you and Dany Heatley would look okay in a Kings' jersey. And if the Bolts really are serious about moving Lecavalier, well, you'd like Tampa. Pretty sure, though, it'll be time to move on from L.A.
What about Beauchemin for the Sabres? They have to do something on D, right? They have no talent in the pipeline there.
Swim; There are a couple of interesting pieces for the Sabres like Mike Weber, Tyler Myers, T.J. Brennan, but I agree, Beauchemin would be a nice addition to the Sabres. He's got the right personality for the team, hard-nosed but with surprising offensive up-side. With Pronger gone, though, wonder if Anaheim will make a bid to keep him in the fold. Stay tuned.
do you see the tampa bay Lighting going after a scoring forward
Evan; Unless they move Lecavalier I expect the Bolts will be pretty quiet after last summer's explosion of signings, many of which were misguided.
Hi Scott Thanks for the time. I am wondering what your take is on the Jay Bo to Calagary deal is? I as a Panthers fan have to be pleased we got something in return no?
Sean; My pleasure. Well, assuming the Panthers can bring Jordan Leopold under contract it is a good deal. Bryan McCabe, Keith Ballard, Jordan Leopold, that's not a bad core along the blue line. If the Panthers can't sign Leopold they'll be wondering for a long time about the decision not to deal Bouwmeester at the trade deadline.
Is Scott Gomez still considered an "elite" player. Exactly what type of player will the rangers get in return for gomez if traded?
Jason; Fair question. I think Gomez is one of those players who will be attractive as a kind of reclamation project. And if the Rangers can find anyone to take his contract off their hands that will be thanks enough.
Hey Scott, What type of money and term do you see Gaborik getting?
Mike; Great question. Wish I knew. But I imagine his agent, Ron Salcer, will be looking for something that approximates the big deals given top scorers like Heatley, Gomez (when he was a big point producer), Lecavalier, and others. Of course that's not going to happen given the uncertainty of the marketplace and Gaborik's injury history. He has the potential, then, to be a great bargain or a colossal bust.
Is there any chance I'm back in the NHL next year? If so, who am I playing for and what kind of contract am I looking at?
Jaromir; How are the dumplings? Unless you miss a payment, and trust me the KHL bosses won't let that happen, don't see there's any way for you to get out of the next year of your deal. If you end up coming back, well, I know a guy named Sidney Crosby that might have fun playing on a line with you.
Hey Scott, word has it Sakic has made up his mind, but they are not saying anything, you have any insider information?
Deron; No inside information but I am guessing Sakic will hang them up.
Hey Scott, do you see any significant players leaving the NHL to play in a league overseas?
Craig; I think there will always be players of interest who go; guys like Sergei Fedorov or Ray Emery (now back in the NHL of course) but apart from the odd (duck) like Jaromir Jagr, the KHL will never attract top players in their prime. Money is nice but the competition still doesn't hold a candle to the NHL not to mention the seven time zones you have to travel through and dumpy conditions in lots of rinks in the KHL.
Can the Blackhawks land a top offensive guy to take the heat off of Kane, Toews and Co.?
Ken: I think if the 'Hawks don't manage to convince Martin Havlat to come back for one more year (or downgrade his demands for a long-term deal) then they will wait and see if they can add an offensive piece later in the going for a year, maybe two. GM Dale Tallon cannot take on much in the way of salary beyond next season as he's got core pieces like Toews, Kane, Seabrook and Keith to worry about.
What is the hold up preventing the Wings getting a deal done with Hossa
Jim; Did you watch Hossa play in the playoffs?
Do you see the Thrashers getting any star centers to entice me to sign a long term deal with them?
Ilya; Thought it was interesting the Thrashers took Evander Kane who can play both center and wing with their first pick (fourth overall). Hmm. coincidence? We think not.
What would it take to make the Kessel for Kaberle trade happen?
Kevin; The 7th pick overall in Friday's draft.
Hey Scott, do you think that the sedins will both be signed by the same team, or do you think they will be split up?
Pete; There seems to be an almost universal acceptance that the twins will be a package deal. Weird but true. Apparently the thinking is that if they split them up that their overall value as point-producing machines will decline and make them, as singular assets, much less valuable. Plus no one can tell them apart except Mike Gillis.
So are you saying the Bruins turned down that trade? Wouldn't they prefer Kaberle to Kessel he's much more valuable considering the Bruins can score without Kessel...
James; No. The Bruins wanted the 7th and the Leafs wouldn't part with it.
Do you think the Canucks can get he Sedins signed before Wednesday and if not, do you think they can get Gabroik or Hossa or Cammalari?
Harman; No. I don't think the twins will return to Vancouver although GM Mike Gillis is currently in Sweden to try and get something done. Failing that the Canucks will have money to spend and I think Gaborik is a possibility given his relationship with Pavol Demitra. Some folks believe the Canucks, with Luongo in net, are a team that's close to contender status and that might appeal to a guy like Cammalleri too.
hockey sucks...cant even see the stupid puck on TV
Dan; Try a television that doesn't have rabbit ears. And there's this thing called color television too.
I heard a rumor that Dany Heatly for Brian Campbell is in the works, is there any truth to that?
Mike: Nope. Became a rumor because their numbers look about the same (contract numbers that is).
Will the Avalanche get rid of dead weight contracts like Darcy Tucker? Also, what will they do for their goalie situation?
Jon; Great question. The Avs are in the hunt for Gustavsson, the famous Swedish free agent (okay, famous being a relative term). And I wouldn't be surprised to see Tucker bought out of his deal. If Sakic hangs them up it will be another long year in Denver. Look for the Avs to try and move Ryan Smythe, too, to a team looking for grit and leadership.
I also saw a rumor about Ribeiro, Niskanen, and Brunnstrom for Heatley. Any truth there?
Travis; Don't think so. Heard a Niskanen rumor relating to Kaberle I think and it wasn't true, either. Hard to imagine the Stars giving up on a nice young defensive prospect like Niskanen.
Scott Can you see Jean-Sebastien Giguere getting traded to a team in need of a goaltender like Toronto or Colorado?
Jim; Yes. Watch for the Gustavsson shoe to fall and then, if he doesn't end up in Toronto, look for the Leafs to make a pitch for Giguere who is a Burke guy.
You answer a statment like, "hockey sucks...can't even see the stupid puck on TV," but you can't answer a question like what kind of moves you think the penguins will do in the offseason?
Jeff; You seem a bit sensitive. Am happy to respond to Pens query. They signed Craig Adams today and I expect they will sign Bill Guerin as long as he doesn't want too much money. Fedotenko will also likely come on board. Scuderi will go to July 1 and test the market but have to believe he, too, will return. If Guerin doesn't sign one name in the wind is Mike Knuble who won't return to Philadelphia barring a huge step down in salary. How's that?
Have you heard anything on the Preds a top 6 forward? And if Sully leaves doesn't that mean we need two top 6 forwards then?
Matt; The problem for the Preds is that needs don't necessarily come into the equation as much as 'how much do they cost?' Which means I suspect David Poile will wait patiently for either Sullivan to get tired of not finding the term/dollar he likes or finds another forward of similar capabilities later in the summer and landing him. But yes, more scoring would be nice for a team that has almost none to start with.
Will the kings attract any big UFA'S?
Joe; Lots of Kings questions and they will make a splash. GM Dean Lombardi has some money and needs an impact forward whether it's free agent or via trade. He's got to decide on the type of guy he wants, though. Heatley can score but is he the character guy he wants to show the way for his young players? Ryan Smythe can't produce like he did but he's solid and would be a great role model. Daniel Briere and Scott Gomez might help and then there's Hossa or the long-shot Vincent Lecavalier. Regardless, Lombardi will land a big fish of some shape.
With the Blues buying out McKee's contract, do you see them making a splash come Wednesday. It seems like they have been linked to almost every availalbe player, especially puck moving d-men.
Steve; Interesting move for a team that doesn't like to throw money around or away. They were in on the Pronger sweepstakes but wouldn't pay the price in terms of prospects/picks which makes sense. They have to be careful of not taking too big a bite after last year's great run to the playoffs. They're going to get three guys back that missed significant time; Paul Kariya, Eric Brewer and Erik Johnson. That explains the McKee move and it may suggest the team will be pretty quiet and hope to build on what they've got.
Thanks all. See you next time. SB