For more information regarding our move, please read the two last post published below.

28 February 2007

Fallout: Jason Blake almost ended up in Anaheim?

I don't have much information regarding this topic, but I recall reading that in New York, following the Rangers-Canadiens game, on the Rangers' post game show, that Jason Blake was on the verge of being traded to the Anaheim Ducks for a first-round pick.
However, the NHL reportedly rejected the deal because it was sent in too late.

The show mentioned that it was a first rounder headed the other way to New York.

Brian Burke secretly told the world yesterday:

Brian Burke, on Tradecentre '07, talked to James Duthie live. Duthie asked him a few questions.
"Are you pursuing any player in particular? "
Burke: "Yes."

"Do you plan to use the first-round pick you acquired from Tampa Bay to go after a player you desire?"
Brian Burke with a straight face answered quickly again: "Yes."

What more proof do you want? Burke is usually active on Trade Deadline Day and I was surprised to find out he didn't make a significant deal with or without that first-round pick he got.

Blake, the subject of many trade rumours, is eligible for unrestricted free-agency on July 1st and with the acquisition of Ryan Smyth from the Oilers, it's unlikely he'll be retained.
Ironically, yesterday, Jason Blake potted in 3 goals which ended a lengthy cold streak, must've been happy Ryan Smyth was dealt to the Isles since they'll play together on a line with Alexei Yashin....

As always, with the latest hockey news,
Bleu, Blanc et Rouge.

Why Gary Roberts should have ended up in Toronto.

Bruce Garrioch from the Ottawa Sun, is reporting that John Muckler was upset at the Panthers in his attempts to acquire Gary Roberts, who was later dealt to Pittsburgh, "because nobody is sure if Florida coach and GM Jacques Martin and assistant GM Randy Sexton were bargaining in good faith."
John Ferguson Jr., also, was not happy for being left out in the cold for the Roberts sweepstakes by the Panthers management.
And to add controversy to this, Garrioch claims "there's a strong feeling" that Jacques Martin did not want to help out his former club, or his former rival club for that matter.

You know what, I agree.

It seems very odd that Gary Roberts, who raved about going to an Ontario-based team, ends up going to the Penguins because they offered "the best deal"!
Are you really kidding me Jacques Martin? Noah Welch was the best you can get for a highly-sought player?

On Monday, Darren Dreger told Gord Miller that the Leafs had offered up a 2nd and 4th round pick along with a prospect (which could have been Brendan Bell, and as the Leafs lost out on Roberts, he was later traded to the 'Yotes for Yanic Perreault.)
This seems more than fair for a declining 40-year old player with just 29 points this year.

Noah Welch, don't get me wrong, is a nice young defenceman; but offering up Brendan Bell along with two very decent picks seems a lot more fair. Admit it Jacques, you didn't want him going to Toronto.

And with the ridiculous asking price given to Ottawa (Antoine Vermette or Patrick Eaves and a 1st round pick), admit you didn't want him going to your old Senators either.
John Muckler had complained on Monday that the prices going out there we're "outrageous"and that he would not overpay to bring in a rental player.

Well, it sounds pretty outrageous to include the words : Vermette, and, 1st, for, Roberts, in the same sentence.
Muckler might have been talking about this outrageous asking price and referring to Gary Roberts as the rental player.

Furthermore, there is nothing to cover up, Jacques Martin is cheap for deliberately not cooperating with John Ferguson Jr. and John Muckler; the first by rejecting a perfectly expensive offer which sees the Leafs giving up some part of the future for a quick-fix, and the other by reportedly telling John Muckler something even more unbelievable: that he wanted Antoine Vermette or Patrick Eaves along with the Sens 1st rounder for Roberts.

And all Martin got was Noah Welch...

The facts are there under our noses; read 'em and believe 'em.

Bleu, Blanc et Rouge.

27 February 2007

Career -57 player number 6 on TSN's top 10 Most Wanted List.

On today's TSN Tradecentre '07 show (which was relatively good); the panel presented the viewers with a "list" of the top 10 most wanted players by GM's on trade deadline day.

Here is the list:

1. Bill Guerin
2. Owen Nolan
3. Sheldon Souray
4. Jason Blake
5. Martin Gelinas
6. Jamal Mayers (?)
7. Todd Bertuzzi
8. Gary Roberts
9. Georges Laraque
10. Dainius Zubrus

I heard all day long Pierre McGuire saying that it was near centaincy that the Maple Leafs would acquire...wait for it...Jamal Mayers?!

I was thinking to myself "What the hell?". He's ranked, for some reason number 6 on TSN's list ahead of Bertuzzi, Roberts, Laraque and Zubrus; all of whom are better players than Mayers.
I understand the defensive aspects involved in Mayers' game, but really, putting him ahead of those guys might want to make me define TSN as "a little out of their sanity".

Jamal Mayers has 16 points this season (7 goals and 9 assists) and on defence, is a horrible -16 despite the Blues success under new head coach Andy Murray, who took over at the midway mark of the season.
The guy has 125 points in 495 career NHL games and is -57. That's right...-57

Makes me want to not think what Gord Miller has been smoking these past few days, or McGuire for that matter stating "defensive aspects" as an asset of his...or maybe he meant "fighting"?

Take a look at this great fight with Jordin Tootoo:

Hope you enjoyed this,

Bleu, Blanc et Rouge.

(P.S.)Feedback needed on my new logo

The Cherry on the Puck Bag...

I hope you all enjoyed my 6 hour live online coverage, I sure had fun and I hope you enjoyed reading.

Now here's what I have to say about certain things:

Ryan Smyth an Islander: This hit me from Planet Mars, wow, boy was I surprised; Smyth is a great guy and in this situation, I disagree with Pierre McGuire, Lowe should have pushed harder to sign Smyth. They dealt Pronger at the beginning of the season and you'd think with the cap space they freed up that they'd be able to re-sign their key player. Guess not!
The Oilers got some nice young talent back in Nilsson and O'Marra to go along with a first-round pick, but none of that compensates for this costly loss of "the Oiler".
This is huge, it seemed like there would be no surprises this year and we got one 32 minutes after the 3 PM Trade Deadline.
It remains however to be seen if the Islanders can re-sign him and if this move is the end of Jason Blake in Garth Snow's camp?

Sharks look meaner with Guerin:
Bill Guerin's name was officially off the trade market
around noon today with the San Jose Sharks winning out on the jewel of this trade deadline, Bill Guerin.

He came cheaper to San Jose than Tkachuk to Atlanta, the Blues got a 1st round pick, checker Ville Niemienen and a minor-league prospect.

That's all! And Guerin has more points than Tkachuk. Tkachuk went for a 1st, 3rd, 2nd and a much better player in Glen Metropolit than Ville Niemienen.

The Sharks seem set for the playoffs now, they got Craig Rivet from the Canadiens, he should be a great pickup;

Billy Guerin will probably play with Patrick Marleau and with Vesa Toskala nursing a groing injury, the Sharks still have an excellent goalie in Evgeni Nabokov.

Bertuzzi looks to make impact in Detroit...for Panthers' sake:
Todd Bertuzzi played only 7 games as a Panther and was traded today to the Detroit Red Wings who beat out the Nashville Predators and the Anaheim Ducks for his services.
Holland acquires the controversial winger in hope he excels on a Cup hungry Red Wing team.
Bertuzzi says his back is not yet at 100 % but nonetheless, he should still end up playing for them.
It may take some time for him to adgust but, all and all, he'll probably make an impact down the stretch and during the playoffs.
Now, the Red Wings sent a conditional pick to Jacques Martins' Panthers; if Bertuzzi excels with his new team, the Panthers could get a second round pick; if he takes them to the Cup Final, Florida gets a 1st round pick.
Ingenious move by Kenny Holland, who structured this move perfectly, so his team doesn't suffer if Bertuzzi stumbles. And if he does, the Panthers, at best, will get a 4th or 3rd round pick.
And this is,

Bleu, Blanc et Rouge

Trade Deadline Live Blogging Event

UPDATE: JAGR NOT CONCERNED ABOUT TRADE RUMOURS Yvon Pednault, on RDS's Canadiens broadcast team, mentioned that he had spoken to Jaromir Jagr, asking him if he "had been concerned at all that his name had appeared in trade rumours?"Jagr apparently told Pednault "Not at all" and to prove it, he slept all day and even turned off his cellphone.

TWELFTH UPDATE: JAGR COULD BE MOVED THIS SUMMER: Yvon Pednault, during RDS's broadcast of tonight's Habs-Rangers game mentioned that Glen Sather may move Jaromir Jagr this summer if the price is right. He states opposing teams wouldn't have to pay an arm and leg to get him either.

ELEVENTH UPDATE: DUCKS AND LIGHTNING MAKE MINOR LEAGUE SWAP: The Ducks and Lightning made a minor-league swap about 8 minutes ago with Anaheim sending D Joe Rullier to Tampa Bay in exchange for fellow D Doug O'Brien. Maybe Brian Burke got lonely now that Shane O'Brien is gone...

TENTH UPDATE: KINGS acquire HEWARD; The Los Angels Kings have acquired defenceman Jamie Heward from the Washington Capitals for a conditional draft choice. Great pickup by the slumping Kings, he has good talent; gets it done offensively and is steady defensively.

PRECISION ON THE NINTH UPDATE: His family will always "see him as an Oiler" and he has now reported to the New York Islanders.

NINTH UPDATE: Ryan Smyth in shambles after trade: Ryan Smyth is reportedly in shambles after this trade to New York and is devastated. This was briefly mentioned by James Duthie as the Tradecntere '07 show on TSN went into commercial.

EIGTH UPDATE: Sheldon Souray to call press conference after Habs-Rangers game tonight: Can this mean that Bob Gainey was quiet today because of this potential signing of Souray? Can this be the press conference Habs fans like you and I have been dreaming about? We'll see...(source: Team 990 Montreal)

SEVENTH UPDATE: JFJ just reported this from TO: Darcy Tucker "grit and goals" signs an extension and they welcome the acquisiton of Yanic Perreault.

SIXTH UPDATE: PENGUINS MAKE TWO MORE DEALS: The Penguins are ready to deal again, planning to send a 4th round pick to the Panthers for Joel Kwitakowski and a 7th round pick to the Sharks for goalie Nolan Schaefer. Note: Wow, surprised the Pens are getting Schaefer that cheap, he has performed well in training camp and limited duty for the Sharks and San Jose was trying to deal Evgeni Nabokov to make room for him. Very odd indeed.

FIFTH UPDATE: The Kings deal Jason Ward to the Lightning for a 2007 5th round pick.

FOURTH UPDATE: Depth trade; the Buffalo Sabres want to make sure there's no repeat of last year's playoffs as they acquire depth D Mikko Lehtonen for a 4th round pick from the Predators.

THIRD UPDATE: The Blackhawks send Karl Stewart and a 6th round pick to Tampa Bay for Nikita Alexeev. Horrible move by the Lightning, Alexeev turned out to be having a good first post-lockout season with Tampa Bay and moving him for a propsect who's been passed around several teams for the past two season doesn't make sense. Chicago blows this one away.

SECOND UPDATE: David Hale traded from the Devils to Calgary per TSN for a 3rd round pick. Hale was not a fan favourite in New Jersey and it looks like Lou Lamoriello finally understood he had no doing in the Devils organisation. Jim Fahey may soon be called up...

UPDATED 4:49 PM: Details of the Norstrom trade have been revealed by TSN, it's much bigger than I thought: Jaroslav Modry heads back to Los Angeles along with Johan Franssen and a 2008 1st, a 2007 2nd and 3rd round pick, in exchange Dallas gets captain Mattias Norstrom, Konstantin Pushkarev (a very nice young prospect) and a 3rd and 4th round pick. I may be off a bit, correct me if I am.

3:55 PM EST Just heard the TSN Panel mention very briefly that Dennis Wideman has been dealt to Boston for Brad Boyes! WHAT! How badly did St. Louis just fleece the Bruins here, here is Peter Chiarellis first move which will be found under the "fleeced" section for me...apparently Mattias Norstrom was not happy to be traded since he claims he's been captain for long of LA and does not appreciate that. Apparently GM's didn't even know that Smyth was available and they called Miller and McKenzie asking "Smyth was available?!"

3:44 PM EST Wayne Gretzky on the Smyth trade: "In the era we live in now we have to make decisions on the buisiness side of things, Kevin felt the right decision wasto load up wit hsome young players for now and the future, Ryan exercised his option of not making a deal happen and kevin lowe exercises his option of trading him. Any decision you make is a tough decision, especially a player with the quality of Ryan Smyth, you have to do what's best for the hockey team and not your heart, that's what Kevin Lowe has done, down the road he'll have a pretty good hockey club and that's what the city of Edmonton wants, a few championships down the road. Sometimes you have to make tough decisions. "

3:35 PM EST: It looks like this is going to happen. Wow, I really can't imagine Ryan Smyth being in another jersey besides copper and blue. Does this mean Jason Blake will now almost certainly be dealt? McKenzie reports SMYTH HAS BEEN DEALT TO THE NY ISLANDERS for ROBERT NILLSSON, a 1st ROUND PICK and RYAN O'MARRA. Even if Edmonton got something very nice in return; they lose their potential franchise player.

3:33 PM EST: McGuire and Keenan are talking and saying he was dealt because they could not re-sign him. I am personally shocked at this deal; a lot of people will be mad at Kevin Lowe but anyway, McGuire stands by him, saying if he couldn't sign him, he had to trade him. When it becomes official, if it does, I will post more...

3:30 PM EST: Todd Bertuzzi: "Very excited about an oppertunity to play with a club such as Detroit" "I met with the Panthers three weeks ago and what theit plan was with me so, and they said sooner or later something was going to happen. I have to play well in order to earn my playing time. I'm getting there, I've spoken with 'em and I'm taking a little more time here to make sure my back is 100%

3:29 PM EST: HUGE SMYTH NEWS! Gord Miller says a non-playoff team reports that Ryan Smyth has been traded to the New York Islanders!! There is no confirmation from McKenzie or Dreger yet, so, this is not yet close to being official.

3:26 PM EST: Glen Healy "confirmation" that Kings captain Matthias Norstrom has been dealt to the Dallas Stars, Dreger gave Healy the thumbs up. Nothing official yet, we knew Dallas needed to shore up their defence, and they got a quality defenceman in Norstrom. I will update once I find out who went the other way.

3:24 PM EST: McKenzie, Dreger and Miller are furiously working the phones. We may see Martin Gelinas, Jozef Stumpel, Jason Blake or Curtis Joseph dealt soon. Maybe Bob Gainey will surprise and announce he's either signed or dealt Sheldon Souray?

3:09-18 PM EST: Yannic Perreault told TSN: Oops, James Duthie nearly went deaf as Perreault's call was filled with static and the show was then launched to commerical break. I will transcribe his comment later..." I'm very excited to be back here, I know Mats Sundin and it's great to be back. " "Every year there's movement and you never know what's going to happen, should be a great experience back to the ACC" "I didn't know what to expect, Nashville wasn't surethey wanted me, they signed Arnott to a 5-year deal, I started the year with no team because I wanted to be completely healthy before signing with a team" " I wanted to choose somewhere that would be a great fit for me and my family, it's been a great fit in Phoenix, now I'm moving on and I'll try to do the same with the Leafs."

3:03 PM EST: Fallout: The LOS ANGELES KINGS have dealt D Matthias Norstrom to an unnamed team. Bob McKenzie just gave us a very helpful update on Ryan Smyth: he says the negotiations have been going back and forth feverishly for the past two hours and as of 3 PM, no deal had been reached. Jason Blake is attracting a lot of attention and whoever wants him will have to pay a hefty price...

3:00 PM EST: And there you have it ladies and gents...your 2007 NHL Trade Deadline. But as you know there are usually deals announced after the 3 PM deadline which were finalized before. I will continue to post updates regarding trades or movement. Thank you for sticking with me all day and bring my statistics to a phenomenal uprise in only 3 days, I will continue writing this blog day in and day out about my and my second passion, sharing it with you. Thanks to you for making today a fun event by stopping in and bothering to read my stuff...

2:48 PM EST: The reporters discuss if Lou Lamoriello should get someone for the Devils. "If you make a trade and you don't win the Stanley Cup, you have to support the trade" that is from Lou Lamoriello and basically is saying he has confidence in his team.

2:39 PM EST: TSN clarifies what the Leafs gave up for Perreault: defenceman Brendan Bell and a 2007 2nd round draft pick.

2:35 PM EST: The panel talks about how Yannic Perreault's faceoffs will impact the Leafs, who rank 26th in faceoffs won this season. Pierre McGuire also mentions that Matt Stajan could soon be dealt for a piece that will help the Leafs. Dainius Zubrus fills a scoring need for Buffalo now that Afinogenov and Kotalik are both out for 2 months.

2:29 PM EST: Darren Pang was wrong, the Toronto Maple Leafs just got YANNIC PERREAULT from the Phoenix Coyotes; details to follow and DAINIUS ZUBRUS was traded to the Buffalo Sabres for JIRI NOVOTNY and a 1st round pick. Wow, we just exploded with 3 trades in 1 minute and a half...

2:28 PM EST: Bob McKenzie just confirmed that Todd Bertuzzi is officially a Red Wing; and that the Rangers have dealt Pascal Dupuis, just weeks after acquiring him, to the Atlanta Thrashers for a prospect. I wonder why the hell Glen Sather got him then.

2:24 PM EST: Darren Pang just confirmed that Owen Nolan is not going anywhere due to his wife who's pregnant in Phoenix now and they do not want to put him in that kind of situation. Pang also added that Yanic Perreault, likely is not going to be traded.

2:20 PM EST: Bob McKenzie notifies everyone that, contrary to many online reports, Ryan Smyth has not signed a deal with the Edmonton Oilers yet. He says that they're all contradictory to what "we've heard".

2:16 PM EST: TODD BERTUZZI has just, according to Bob McKenzie, been dealt to the Detroit Red Wings for a conditional pick and a prospect. It's not official yet. Great pickup by Kenny Holland, given Bertuzzi is healthy, he brings a full resume to the table: scoring ability, experienced, good skater, good hitter, reliable defensively. But, Bertuzzi still has to adjust, as he's been out since October.

2:14 PM EST: Glen Healy just said that Owen Nolan was told he won't be going anywhere 30 minutes ago.

2:08 PM EST: DUCKS acquire BRAD MAY from Colorado. Not at all the trade Burke was talking about before, I still think he'll do the Bertuzzi deal...since Burke likes to bring back old players.

2:04 PM EST: Less than an hour left now...just wanted to add that Aarond Ward was dealt for Paul Mara. A pretty fair trade but I think the Rangers got the edge because of his offensive side.

1:57 PM EST: BLAKE UPDATE Jason Blake has been offered to the Red Wings accordings to this writer's blog


1:53 PM EST: Pierre McGuire suggest the Stars are going after a defenceman...

1:49 PM EST: Pierre McGuire says that Brian Burke won't let David Poile get ahead of him and acquire any impact players that Burke would be looking into. He's determined to add to his team.

1:46 PM EST: Aaron Ward appears on TSN and says he does not know why he didn't do well in New York and that he likes Boston and is familiar with this team.

1:44 PM EST: Brian Burke mentioned he intends to use the 1st round pick he got from Tampa Bay to bring in a good player and that he's going after one particular player.

1:35 PM EST: Talks are still going between Edmonton and Ryan Smyth; it is believed Smyth will earn $5.25 million if he signed, per season.

1:30 PM EST: Update on Guerin deal: He was dealt for a 2007 1st round pick; Ville Niemienen and Jay Barriball.

1:22 PM EST: I just checked out and it figures that the Canadiens are exchanging calls with the Florida Panthers for Jozef Stumpel.

1:20 PM EST: Bob McKenzie is reporting the Leafs are looking to bring back Curtis Joseph but cap concerns won't allow them to do that.

1:18 PM EST: the Team 990 in Montreal is reporting that the New York Rangers are checking Todd Bertuzzi's medical record...

1:12 PM EST: McGuire: "I'd be absolutely shocked if Kevin Lowe didn't sign Ryan Smyth." He laughs at Jeremy Roenick's trade request. "Stajan's having a very good year", he may be traded out of Toronto. "What is Kevin Lowe going to do with this team?" on Petr Sykora and Ryan Smyth...

1:05 PM EST: In need of a good defenceman, the Boston BRUINS have acquired steady defenceman AARON WARD from the Rangers, for PAUL MARA. Ward is a solid aggressive defenceman and he was part of Carolina's Stanley Cup winning team last season and signed as a free-agent with the Rangers. James Duthie says the deal involves a player on Boston's roster, stay tuned...

12:58 PM EST: Glen Healy takes out his mini Stanley Cup; hey, that looks pretty real Glen!

12:54 PM EST: Now Mark Messier's "documentary" is on TSN; likely no more updates for next few minutes...

12:48-51 PM EST: McGuire: Buffalo is gonna use that first round pick to get a forward. Tampa might have something in the works, Ray Shero's done in Pittsburgh and McKenzie says: "Everyone's done in Atlanta". Jamal Mayers is going to Toronto. I think Jason Blake will be dealt because things aren't working out and he wants out. There's been talk in Boston about deals..."they are NOT trading Jaromir Jagr, I'd be surprised if he was." Jaromir Jagr however was not at practice and there's nothing new on Aaron Ward's trade situation in New York (Rangers).

12:45 PM EST: I missed this but on Spector's, he claims that reports indicate that KEVYN ADAMS has signed a 1-year contract extension with Phoenix.

God, Sportsnet is a joke: They have Eklund on and he's like the banker in Deal-or-no Deal, they have his face shadowed and they're playing a retarted game "trade or no trade". For god sake's! The producer should be fired!

12:40 PM EST: Duthie: With NY's acquisition of Richard Zednik yesterday, Duthie reminds everyone that the Blake rumours are still fueling...

12:33 PM EST: DOMINIC MOORE TRADED TO WILD FOR A THIRD ROUND PICK, this is not unexpected since after getting Roberts and Laraque, they needed to deal someone. The Wild get a gritty checker who's fast and he'll fit in well in Minnesota. McGuire: Great acquisition for Minnesota, I understand why Pittsburgh did this, it was just business, they

12:25 PM EST Laraque: "Excited about this oppertunity, this was the best thing out there. I had a few days to think about; I'm happy and excited to help this team get better" "I know I'll have more responsabilities since this a young team with young talent. I look forward to have a big impact on the team. " "I'll be a bodyguard, looking at all the talent they have (chuckles), my presence will make a huge difference and that's what teams do when they play Pittsburgh, they hit Malkin, Staal and Crosby, that's what they do to win." "Euuh, no, the Coyotes have not yet informed me officially, it's clear the trade's been done because I waived my no-trade clause."

12:18 PM EST: Duthie: What do the Anaheim Ducks do now? He says that as the show heads into commerical...

12:16 PM EST: McGuire: Clowe goes off that line, no offence to him but Bill Guerin is going to play with Marleau. There's a lot of pressure on Thornton now, they had to get him and Guerin was very good to Joe Thornton.

12:11 PM EST: Guerin: "They're a very talented team, two minutes away, going up and down their roster I know 'em so much, it's a place where I feel I can fit in." "You can't lose there, they've two of the two best young centres in the game, we'll make it work." "We never really had a formal negotiation with the Blues, we just had some discussions, there was no list of teams, the team that makes their best offer and with a notrade clause you can accept it or deny, and in San Jose, that's what I was looking for. The Blues have been unbelievable, nothing but pure class. It's been a great experience here in St. Louis.

12:09 PM EST: McKenzie mentions some quick WAIVERS CLAIMS: Michael Leighton-Canadiens; Jason Krog-New York Rangers; Brian Boucher-Blue Jackets; Hamel- Philly; Kapanen-Phoenix.

12:08 PM EST: GUERIN TRADED TO SHARKS ? according to Gord Miller, details to follow very soon in a 3-way deal. Miller reported that Wilson will not trade Milan Michalek, Steve Bernier and possibly Matt Carle. Note: That leaves Joe Pavelski...GORD MILLER just mentioned there may not even BE a three-way deal. Miller says that a player not on San Jose's roster is included in the deal. Now TSN has just taken off "3-way deal" from the ticker. Duthie: By all accounts now, the trade is a two-way deal.

11:56 AM EST: GUERIN UPDATE ,TRADED?: The Sharks, Ducks and Red Wings are in the run. They are trying to figure out where he is. We're hearing it's a three-way deal. Only the Sharks...can pull of a three-way deal, I'd be willing to bet it's a three-way deal.

11: 54 AM EST: GUERIN UPDATE: Dutchysen: He reports GUERIN HAS BEEN TRADED and they are finalizing the deal. He brings grit, forchecking, scoring, experience. I'm not surprised with his resurgence, he loves playing for Andy Murray, his 28 goals prove it.

11:53 AM EST: Healy: He loves the Laraque deal because Pittsburgh was in need for a fighter, a tough guy. They are now a legitimate contender for the Stanley Cup

11:51 AM EST: Walji: Nonis is at the hotel taking calls and not placing calls. There isn't much room left for anything in Vancouver (after Sopel and Smolinksi).

11:49 AM EST: Walji: Guerin will be traded, something is imminent we don't know much yet about him yet.

11: 44 AM EST: Duthie: It's the little moves that can add up and matter for you (on Laraque and Roberts)

11:39 AM EST: Laraque will not play with Crosby.

11: 36 AM EST: George Laraques has been traded to Pittsburgh for Danny Carsillo and an 8th round pick.

11: 35 AM EST: LARAQUE WAIVES NTC: McKenzie: Georges Laraque has waived his NTC.

11: 33 AM EST: GUERIN UPDATE! Duthie mentioned that Farhan Walji is reporting that Bill Guerin IS NOT ON THE ICE for the Blues, commercial break now, details to come.

11: 31 AM EST: Cybulski with Brian Campbell: *your reaction?* Campbell: It's tough, he's been a good teammate for many years but the oppertunity for him is there now and that's why he was traded. It's good for him, that's the main thing, we're gonna miss him in the locker room, he was a great guy, he played the last few games and set himself up for next year. *Are you familiar with Ty* Not really...a US goalie coming in, hopefully they can form a good tandem...Darcy will make the right moves for our team. New Jersey's not too far behind and we would like to get these points tonight.

11: 28 AM EST: Keenan: We offered Luongo 30 million, he said no, we have to consider trading him. He signed for 27 million in Vancouver and we offered him 30 here and he also signed a 4-year deal there and we offered a 5-year deal here. *Anything else on the table* Keenan: We fished around the NHL and that was the best offer we had. Everyone loved Roberto, it was a question of asking for too much money for the market we were playing in, he wouldn't sign with us, we had no choice.

11:26 AM EST: Duthie: More available goaltenders left. McGuire: You have to wonder if Biron is still a number one goalie if he couldn't beat out Ryan Miller. What a game Belfour played against the Panthers, I think CuJo is the best fit for most of these teams, he won't cause problems, he can start and be a leader. *Is it worth giving up Martin Biron* McGuire: I think they're gonna parlay the pick they got, they need to add another piece of their puzzle, they were devastated at defence last playoffs and this year they could be at forward.

11: 18 AM EST: MARTIN BIRON: "I was getting ready for practice, and I had a conversation with Lindy and then Darcy, and then I was out..."
"I just had a good conversation with Paul Holmgren and I'm very excited about his oppertunity, I want to be part of their future, now that it's done, that's what I'm gonna do, go into Philly and play some good hockey and play well the rest of the year for moving on forward." "I have no idea what I've been traded for, I'm heading back to Buffalo then fly to Philly" "I knew I still had a year left last season before being a UFA and in the summer I was hoping I'd get traded, I made up my mind [behind Miller] to do my job and focus on it. I had some up and downs but really I wasn't thinking about the trade deadline but only discussing the fight with Ray Emery *laugh*" "We haven't talked [about a contract], it's a bit too early, it's an oppertunity, from what I've talked to them, they're excited to have me and I'm excited to be here, I had some big battles in Buffalo the last few years, I pretty much know Philadelphia and it's part of my history now"

11:17 AM EST: Duthie: What if Buffalo uses the pick they got for Biron for another trade to bolster their roster?

11:15 AM EST: Duthie: Derian Hatcher and Denis Gauthier are being mentioned in trade talk by Philadelphia Flyers.

11:14 AM EST: BUFFALO SABRES ACQUIRE TY CONKLIN FOR A FIFTH ROUND PICK from Blue Jackets Pang: But what if Miller goes down, I don't think you can rely on Conklin in the playoffs, he hasn't played much this year and he hasn't played well.

11:11 AM EST: MARTIN BIRON DEALT: PHILADELPHIA FLYERS ACQUIRE G MARTIN BIRON FROM BUFFALO SABRES for according to McKenzie a 1st round draft choice acquired in the Forsberg trade. This explains Michael Leighton on waivers. The Flyers likely believe they can re-sign him.

11:09 AM EST UPDATE BIRON: RDS reports that Martin Biron is off to the PHILADELPHIA FLYERS, details to come...however, Sportsnet believes it will be the FLORIDA PANTHERS who have acquired him. Stay tuned...

11:05 AM EST: Let's assume Miller gets injured in the playoffs, do you regret trading Biron? If Tim Conolly can be ready for the playoffs, that will show you what depth this team has and that's what has kept them in first place.

11:03 AM EST: Hodge: We're waiting for Biron, to see where he's been traded. Interesting situation in Buffalo, a lot of injuries, right under the cap.

Farber: Biron was likely dealt as a no.1 goalie because of his recent starts in goal.

Hodge: Regier criticized for waiting too long to trade Biron

11:02 AM EST: Sportsnet now reports that Biron was traded as well, details to follow.

BIRON UPDATE: They do not know yet where he has been traded, they'll get on the phone and try to find out.

10:55 AM EST: Duthie: I think that the Sabres should bring in a reliable backup who won't pressure Ryan Miller but can be a good backup anyway.

10:53 AM EST: Dreger: Explain to me (Healy) why Biron is in prison with Buffalo? Healy: He's in prison because he is a good goalie, not getting any playing time on a team with Ryan Miller, he is an unused and wasted asset.

10:48 AM EST:
ALERT! Dreger: A source has told me that Martin Biron has been informed he has been traded.

Duthie: Biron would be a good fit in Montreal.

10:42 AM EST
Cybulski in Toronto: Leafs don't take ice fueling a lot of speculation.
I'm just curious if they'd be willing to pay that much of a price for an impact player.
Duthie: (chuckles) Just curious, is Biron on the ice?
Cybulski:! He is not!

10:40 AM EST
Dutschysen: Why would the Blues keep Guerin if they don't make the playoffs?
-Let's talk about the goalies, rarely we see them involved.
Goaltenders in play: Alex Auld, Eddie Belfour, Martin Biron, Robert Esche, Curtis Joseph, Patrick Lalime
-Joseph, Belfour and Biron are the ones going after, they're solid, they're the ones you need to get.
McGuire: (chukles) I don't know why.
-The Habs have gotta make a move after Aebischer's recent starts, they should go after Joseph.

10:38 AM EST
Gord Miller: Laraque has a no-trade clause and a no movement clause
-Blues are telling teams they are trying to sign Bill Guerin to a new contract
-A lot of 5th and 6th d-mean will be dealt
Bob McKenzie: Talk that Yanic Perrault and Kevyn Adams are close to signing new contracts with Phoenix.
-Enormous pressure on Thrashers to make playoffs, that's why they traded for Tkachuk

TRADECENTRE Canadian Teams Analysis.

Montreal Canadiens
-The panel suggest the Canadiens need a goaltender after last night's horrible performance in Montreal's 5-4 victory over Toronto. They say Jaroslav Halak was great in the minors but not so much now. James Duthie bumps in an mentions he is after all 3-1 in his first 4 starts but Healy doubts he can carry them down the stretch.
Pierre McGuire suggest Curtis Joseph as he could come cheap and the cap hit would be 450K.
Mike Keenan disagrees and cites Eddie Belfour as the better target.
-"Do you trade Sheldon Souray?"
McGuire: No, otherwise you send a terrible message to your fanbase.
Unless Gainey gets a package offer he can't refuse that will knock his socks off, Souray ain't going anywhere.
For sale? Sergei Samsonov
Needs: scorer, goalie
For rent? Niinimaa, Souray, Markov.
Bob Gainey: 3 deadlines, 3 deals.

Toronto Maple Leafs
-The Maple Leafs did not offer enough for Gary Roberts despite his willingness to play there, he chose Florida instead.
Florida wanted Alex Steen and Stajan for Roberts. Healy says Stajan can be used as a possible trade chip for Bill Guerin. He also says Jamal Mayers will almost certainly be a Leaf by the end of the day and Stajan and Pohl could be traded for Guerin.
Leafs are over cap; their schedule has them playing 14 games over a .500 club until the end of the season.
Duthie: They can afford Bill Guerin because Peca's $2.5 million does not count against the cap because he's on long-term injury list. It's a question if they want him or not.
Darren Pang: depth issue, checking line centre issue, you won't see a big move by Ferguson because they don't have much to offer and when they do offer, they keep offering up the same players (like Stajan and Steen) while other teams improve their prospect repertoire, which allowed Pittsburgh to trade prospect Noah Welch to Florida.
Needs: Gritty winger, 2nd line centre
For sale? D. Bell, D Kronwall, A Wozniewski
John Ferguson: 3 deadlines and 4 deals

Edmonton Oilers
Rishaug: Last year they had one glaring weakness, goaltending, this year they have a lot more problems especially on the back-end, the lack of a puck-moving offensive defenseman.
Lowe underestimated his defensive situation and now he will have difficulty making a deal for a defenseman. They have UFA's they'd be willing to deal to get picks and prospects, nothing is clear in Edomonton since they're still somewhat in the race.
Oilers met with Smyth's agent, both sides optimistic, both sides have agreed to be quiet
needs: offensive D
For Rent? Markannen, Tjarnqvist, Smyth, Sykora
For Sale? Smith, Horcoff, Torres, Winchester
Kevin Lowe: 5 deadlines 8 deals.

Roberts for Welch seems like a done deal

After many reports yesterday and an update from TSN's Bob McKenzie this morning, the Pittsburgh Penguins (according to Sportsnet) have acquired veteran forward Gary Roberts for young defenceman Noah Welch and that the deal is done.

Roberts has 13 goals and 16 assists this season for a total of 29 points and hosts a +5 rating.

Roberts' agent reports that his client has waived his no-trade clause and has accepted a trade to Florida after discussing it intently with his family yesterday.
The agent expects an annoucement later today...

This is a very good move on both teams, Gary Roberts has that offensive touch mixed in with a seasoned veteran mindset and on top of it, with a lot of playoff experience.

The Penguins haven't made the playoffs in a while and it'll be interesting to see in what way Roberts will contribute.

Heading the other way is young highly touted defenceman Noah Welch, who's been up-and-down this season between Pittsburgh and Wilkes-Barre/Scranton.

He has 1 goal and 1 assist and is +1 in 22 games with Pittsburgh this season.

After a great finish to last season (3 points in 5 games); the Penguins figured Welch would improve on that, however, he dissapointed with just 2 points.

The Panthers hope Welch can score like he has in Wilkes-Barre/Scranton this season with 6 goals and 15 assists for a total of 21 in 27 games and posts a cool +8.

Bleu, Blanc et Rouge

Curtis Joseph says he'd play for only Montreal or Toronto if he were dealt.

During today's trade special day, Curtis Joseph could possibly become a Montreal Canadien or a Toronto Maple Leaf. Though it is unlikely CuJo will return to Toronto because of Andrew Raycroft's presence, Montreal would seem like a good fit for him.

With David Aebischer floundering and letting in weak goals and giving up huge rebounds, the Canadiens' playoff hopes rest on him, but, with the way he's played recently, I don't think he's up to it.

Joseph has had his share of problems and has struggled to be the clear no.1 goalie with the presence of Mikael Tellqvist. He has struggled this season (which led to the acquisition of Tellqvist) as he posts a 3.13 GAA and a paltry .898 save percentage.

However, I don't think either that rookie Jaroslav Halak, despite a few remarkable starts, is up to the task either and that the Canadiens, despites CuJo's struggles, should take a look at him.

Here's the quote from the Arizona Central.

"Joseph said he'd prefer to stay in Phoenix, too, but acknowledged that being in the playoff hunt is appealing. He'd likely agree to a trade to only Toronto or Montreal."

Bleu, Blanc et Rouge.

Updates on Guerin and Roberts

Check back regurlarly during the day as I'll be live-blogging the event from my couch, computer screen and here, for breaking trades and instant analysis.

Gary Roberts

FIRST UPDATE: Sportsnet's now reporting this is a done deal and an announcement should come later today.

TSN's Bob McKenzie is reportedly saying that Gary Roberts has waived his no-trade clause and that could make way for yesterday's rumoured Penguins-Panthers swap; he says the deal should be announced and that it will be a Noah Welch-Gary Roberts deal (see article on him yesterday for more info on Welch).
And as I said yesterday, Welch is going to be a decent pickup from Pittsburgh for the Cats; this deal seems pretty fair on both sides: Pittsburgh is aquiring a scoring vet with a lot of playoff experience, something that'll come in handy in Pittsburgh's eventual playoff run and the Panthers stick to their plan of rebuilding around a young player core.

Bruce Garrioch is writing that the Sens are still in the mix for Roberts but aren't willing to give up a hefty amount for him (Muckler made that clear yesterday).

And it looks like the Miami Herald is just adding on something we've known: that Roberts wants a 1-year contract extension.

Bill Guerin

The saga which is Bill Guerin has taken an unexpected little twist, similar to Doug Weight's last season, Jeremy Rutherford is reporting that the Blues have talked to Guerin's agent about the possiblility of dealing him and of him returning as a free-agent in the offseason.
I've been thinking about this all along as Guerin wouldn't mind returning to play with Weight and potentially Keith Tkachuk again.

Guerin is now the king of the current trade market, which thanks to yesterday's flurry of deals, has melted considerably. Any team eyeing him will have to pay a steep price as the Ducks and Sharks are battling each other for him, both willing to deal a first-rounder and pick.

Canadiens cling on to beat Leafs and move up to 7th as the playoff race in the East tightens...

Yep, remember that article on Sheldon Souray and how tonight's game was of immense importance to the Canadiens and Leafs? Well, the CH prevails once more, hanging on for a 5-4 victory over the Toronto Maple Leafs.

The Canadiens hand the Leafs a devastating loss as they now lose more ground in the playoff hunt with the Habs and Thrasher both winning tonight.

Andrew Raycroft allowed 5 goals on 16 shots and was replaced mid-way through the 2nd period by J.S. Aubin. The 5 that Montreal put past Raycroft includes 3 power play goals, a blast from Sheldon Souray, a great shot by Michael Ryder in the high slot and a nifty little move by Saku Koivu all alone in front of Andrew Raycroft.

The Leafs would not give up however, putting 2 quickies and softies past David Aebischer in a situation in which Pierre McGuire described David Aebsicher's performance as "terrible".

With under 2 minutes remaining, Canadiens checking forward Garth Murray clearly high sticks Mats Sundin along the boards, however, the reffing crew completely blew the call and missed it entirely. Sundin, furious, spits blood on the ice and continues jawing away at the official and for good reason as the Leafs ended up losing and a blown call cost them a powerplay with enough time to mount a comeback.

Always exciting, though a fight would have been nice.

Some TSN tidbits, thanks to Spector:

- Penguins might make a pitch for Bill Guerin if they don't land Gary Roberts.
- Three or four Western teams may have interest in Phoenix's Owen Nolan. Yanic Perreault hopes to re-sign with the Coyotes. The Pens could still make a pitch for Georges Laraque.
- The NY Rangers, Anaheim Ducks, Detroit Red Wings and possibly the NY Islanders may have interest in Florida's Todd Bertuzzi.
- The Washington Capitals could move Dainius Zubrus by tomorrow's deadline.

Bleu, Blanc et Rouge.

26 February 2007

Red Wings gamble on underachieving Calder

Just minutes after a deal that sent Brent Sopel to Vancouver, the Red Wings have taken off another potential player to be traded the night before Deadline Day, I hope there's something left for tomorrow.

The Chicago Blackhawks traded defenceman Lasse Kukkonen to Philadelphia for struggling forward Kyle Calder who sports a league worst -31 with the Flyers this season and has struggled offensively, netting just 9 goals, which began coming after Christmas and earned 12 points for a measly total of 21.

The Hawks then dealt Calder to the Detroit Red Wings, who have hopes of resurrecting this player from the dead, in exchange for surprising young forward Jason Williams who has put up some impressive numbers this season with

This is just a gamble by the Red Wings in hopes of adding a potential scorer (who hasn't scored this season). They did give up Williams to get him, but seriously, why the hell would Detroit do this? No logic behind this move at all, unless they expect Calder to become the player he was which, at this point, there's no telling what he'll do.

Williams has floundered this season and has not lived up to his $1.6 million salary, Red Wings fans will be happy to see him go.

Kukkonen is a solid young defenceman and the Flyers will likely play him if an injury occurs (very likely.)

I nearly lost all respect for Ken Holland...until a reader notified me of Williams' salary.
Calder could be a make-or-break player for Detroit.

We'll just have to wait and see...

Bleu, Blanc et Rouge

Brent Sopel headed back to Vancouver

Last offseason, the Kings signed free-agent defenceman Brent Sopel from the Vancouver Canucks.

Not even a year later, he's headed back to the team that had given up on him.

Sopel, 30, was traded to Vancouver about 15 minutes ago per TSN, for a second and fourth round draft pick. He has 4 goals and 19 assists for a total of 23 points this season and has managed to be a +2 on a mediocre Kings team.

He has a good shot and is useful on the powerplay as well, he has collected 7 points on the powerplay this season with 2 goals and 5 assists. Sopel always had the potential to be an upper-tier defenceman but he never really got there which promted the Canucks dealing him away.

And on a side note: TSN reports Bryan Smolinski's trade is for a conditional second round pick and it's safe to say this is all but done now.
Oh, and the Leafs-Habs games is great, Canadiens leading 3-1 heading into second. Check it out on TSN.
Bleu, Blanc et Rouge.

Tkachuk shakes up trade market...

Drum roll please...tomorrow's the NHL Trade Deadline we have all been waiting for and which my blog has been spouting out articles for.

FIRST UPDATE: John Muckler was recently quoted by TSN/CP as to that he would not overpay during tomorrow's trade deadline such as Don Waddell and Doug Wilson did to acquire UFA veterans Keith Tkachuk and Craig Rivet.

"After talking to our scouts and talking to our coaching staff, yes we do have a game plan and yes we'd like to do certain things, but the prices are too high right now," Muckler said today following the Senators' practice".

Muckler's is rumoured to be seeking a forward and a defenceman.

Tkachuk trade shakes up trade market

Bruce Garrioch, for the Ottawa Sun, posted an interesting article in this morning's Sun. He claims that Keith Tkachuk's trade to Atlanta has shaken up the trade market due to the price they paid for him (I discussed that here yesterday). "GMs like Ottawa's John Muckler, Tampa's Jay Feaster, Buffalo's Darcy Regier, Toronto's John Ferguson Jr. and Montreal's Bob Gainey must now decide how they're going to react", wrote Garrioch.

If the Sens rumours involving the acquisition of Gary Roberts for a first round pick and Antoine Vermette are true; we may be witnessing a huge change in the approach to trade deadline dealings that GM's now must learn to confront.

Wow, that is insane!
I was really shocked also at what the Canadiens got for Craig Rivet last night: a first round pick and a young defenceman! All for a potential UFA with defensive problems.

Garrioch also writes that "GM's phones went off the hook, after the Thrashers acquired Keith Tkachuk"
From Garrioch's article: "A lot of guys are worried after what Waddell did," added another GM. "They thought the prices would drop by now and they haven't come down.

"Guys are still giving up the No. 1 picks and players to get unrestricted free agents. It's a big price to pay."

Let's take a wait-and-see approach as we inch closer to deadline day on how these deals will affect the huge names and potential seeking teams out there. It'll definitely be interesting to see how much the Blues will get for Bill Guerin...

Have the Penguins acquired Gary Roberts?

Fifth Update: Darren Dreger reported during tonight's Habs-Leafs game that the Leafs have offered a 2nd and 4th round pick along with a prospect...the plot thickens. This may interest Florida and benifit them more...

Fourth Update: the Globe and Mail reports they have learned that the Penguins have offered up "Noah Welch to the Panthers for Gary Roberts."
Note: Welch has been back-and-forth through Pittsburgh and Wilkes-Barre/Scranton this season and has not managed to hold down a roster spot for young. He has lost ground as a prospect and was considered last season a top defensive prospect for the Penguins

Third Update:
"TFP has learned that the Pittsburgh Penguins are finalizing a trade with the Florida Panthers in exchange for veteran Gary Roberts. The trade is not yet completed. Details to follow.."

--The Fourth

Second Update:

It's official: Penguins hunting down Roberts.
--Pittsburgh Post-Gazette

First Update:
"I am hearing that the Roberts situation is big mess, I doubt seriously this deal happens."

Original article:
Apparently, "sources" tell TSN that the Florida Panthers have agreed to trade Gary Roberts and have asked him to waive his no trade clause.

Ready for this?


Yep, we all heard rumours of him being shipped back to an Ontario-based team, but no, maybe TSN says the Penguins have the most interest in him, who knows, and I don't think Roberts is that crazy not to accept an offer to play for a contending team with guys like Sidney Crosby, Evgeni Malkin, Ryan Whitney and Marc-Andre Fleury.
And they aren't short of veterans either, Mark Recchi is there.

But it would surprise me if this is Bob Gainey's idea of a "surprise", what? A guy can dream, can't he?

I'll be watching this closely.

Bleu, Blanc et Rouge.

Canucks snag Smolinski?

Paul Kukla reports the Vancouver Canucks have acquired centre Bryan Smolinski from the Chicago Blackhawks for a second round pick.

Sportsnet now reports the Canucks are closing in on Smolinski and they have not yet acquired him.

Smolinski is a nice addition to a low-scoring Vancouver Canucks team, hopefully he will pan out and jolster their offence...but don't expect huge numbers from Smolinski. As long as he's consistent with his offence as well as his defense, is all the Canucks really care about.
And hey, he is a playoff experienced vet too...

Stay tuned to see how this will turn out.

Islanders acquire lost cause Zednik from Caps

Richard Zednik is changing teams again. TSN is on top of it as usual.

After the Montreal Canadiens dealt him to the Capitals last offseason for a 3rd round pick he has been traded yet again, but this time to the New York Islanders in need of a seasoned veteran with a light offensive touch.

Before Kyle McClaren's controversial hit on Zednik a few years ago, he formed one of the dominant lines in the 2003-2004 NHL playoffs alongside Saku Koivu and Alex Kovalev.
He still played well following the hit but you can see the change once the New NHL was born.

The new NHL has seen Zednik go from consistent threatening offensive contributor who would cut to the net all the time, to a player who worries when he's around the net and no longer plays with the same intensity around the net.

Don't get me wrong, Zednik is still a decent pickup by the Islanders, but if they expect to revive his pre-lockout seasons, they're dreaming.

And they did pay a somewhat expensive price for a guy who played mainly on the Caps' 4th line: a second round pick in the upcoming draft. Remember, the bar for trade prices was set by Don Waddell yesterday in his flurry of questionable moves in acquiring Keith Tkachuk and Alexei Zhitinik for the price of a chunk of the franchise's future.

In 32 games, Richard Zednik has 6 goals and 12 assists in a mostly injury plagued 2006-2007 season

Sheldon Souray's fate could be decided tonight...

When the Canadiens lace up tonight at 7:30 PM EST at the Bell Centre and when fans like you and I turn on our television screen to watch tonight's anticipated matchup between Montreal and Toronto, will know the future of Sheldon Souray.

Barring Souray is traded within the next 2 hours, he will suit up to face the Toronto Maple Leafs tonight in front of another Bell Centre sellout crowd, wearing no. 44 on his back and donning the storied "CH" logo on his chest.

Tonight promises to be a great game with both teams still in playoff contention; the Maple Leafs are one point back of Montreal and in 10th whereas the Canadiens sit tied for 8th in the 9th spot and only 2 points from the 6th spot.

You will know Sheldon Souray's fate around 10:00 PM, when the game will be drawing to a close. It all depends on tonight's game score, if Montreal wins (which is a must for them), they will continue to push up in the standings in hope of catching the Islanders, Hurricanes, Thrashers and Senators ahead of them. A Montreal loss will put the Canadiens in 10th place and depending on the outcome of the other games, may devestate their playoff hopes as they have played more games than most of the Eastern Conference teams in the race.

So how does this apply to Souray? Simple: Montreal loses, Canadiens GM Bob Gainey would likely contemplate seriously trading him the next day since his team has fallen lower in the standings and keeping him would result in losing him to free-agency.
I'm sure Gainey, as we have seen with Tkachuk and Rivet, wouldn't pass up an opportunity to get young prospects and a draft choice for him

Or, a Montreal win (with eventual help from Souray) might, just might show Mr. Gainey that the team can still make it, still have what it takes and that Sheldon Souray is key to their playoff hopes.

If he truly believes that, Gainey will stay put tomorrow, devastating many fans and probably other GM's around North America who are longing to see where the shot-pounding defenceman will end up, and gamble on the team's playoff hopes by potentially losing Souray for nothing.

This is just my opinion, but, who knows what Bob Gainey is thinking?
One way or another, tonight might be the last we see of no.44 in bleu, blanc et rouge.

Sheldon Souray is an UFA on July 1st and he will likely command the cap max for his services.

Hoping Gainey will do the right thing, this is...

Bleu, Blanc et Rouge.

This can't be right: Alex Kovalev on waivers?!

I was surprised too, and as a Habs fan, I nearly physically and not literally, crapped on myself when I read this on a forum.
Our friend Eklund, in his most recent blog post, spelled out his name in capital letters but made no mention of him in the post, he likely was fooled by this from USA Today citing this:


Montreal Canadiens: Placed RW Alex Kovalev on waivers.

By God, I hope this isn't true...has Bob lost his mind?

Bleu, Blanc et Rouge.

Third Update:
It looks like the situation is resolved for now; The Fourth reports that Alex Kovalev's agent has not even heard about being put on waivers "That's news to me", said Kovalev's agent to the TFP. They also claim that there is no truth to the previous reports published today and that Kovalev is still a Hab and will suit up for tonight's game against Toronto.

Second update:
Now the Associated Press is reporting this!

MONTREAL CANADIENS—Placed RW Alex Kovalev on waivers.

This seems like a pretty big mistake, I don't know what the heck is really going on here but I will continue to post updates.

First update from Eklund (hey, whoever I can get about this):
" Continuing to check into Kovalev...will have answer VERY SOON"
Note: Not very helpful yet, oh my god, I know I'm overreacting and this is likely fake, but, please no!

Video Reviewed: Ray Emery

On the right hand navbar, you can see I've added a tidbit named "Video Reviewed:..."

This time, I figured I'd add Ray Emery, the Ottawa Senators goaltender and his impressive fight resume...

I'll feature once-in-a-while, an NHL or AHL player whose video record is worthy of myself sharing with you.

Enjoy the fights!

Bleu, Blanc et Rouge.

Jackets got best of deal with Modin, signs a new contract with Columbus.

TSN, as always on top of things, is reporting this.

Modin was traded to Columbus in the off-season by the Lightning in exchange for goaltender Marc Denis and, boy, the Jackets don't regret making this deal.

Denis was highly touted by Tampa Bay and they thought their goalie woes were resolved (see John Grahame).

Wrongo, while Denis is maintaining a save percentage around .880 in Tampa and a GAA of 3.20, his counterpart, Modin, is having a good season in Columbus and proved he "still has it" after he was questioned for his poor season in Tampa Bay the year before.

This is not a surprising move, since the signing has been rumoured for the past two weeks. And with that, ladies and gents, Fredrik Modin is off the market.

Bleu, Blanc et Rouge.

TSN/Eklund: 9 players on waivers.

EDIT: TSN just reported this, it is official.

It is Eklund, so until this becomes official (if it does) ...take it with a grain of salt:

He claims a reliable source has informed him that, 9 players have been put on waivers and here they are:

"Brian Boucher, Bryan Berard, Michael Leighton, Denis Hamel, Jason Krog, Niko Kapanen, Marc Chouinard, Aaron Downey, and Petr Cajanek"

Some very interesting names in there, especially Berard, Kapanen, Boucher and Cajanek.

Berard requested a deal out of Columbus, maybe putting him on waivers is the first step, although, I would not understand any logic behind this since Columbus would lose one of its top defencemen and get absolutely nothing in return.

Expect most of these names will likely be claimed.

The Bill Guerin Watch.

Paul, over at Kukla's Korner cited: "Bob McKenzie was just on NHL Live and mentioned Detroit, Atlanta, Ottawa along with the Sharks being in the running for Bill Guerin. He would not be surprised if a deal was done today"

Aww, the GM's have gotta stop trading away, or else, there will be nothing left for Trade Deadline Day!

Anyway, McKenzie was just on the Team 990 here in Montreal and he mentioned some of this. However, it is very interesting to see the Thrashers name be in that list of teams (there are probably more too).

First they acquire Tkachuk for a huge price (Metropolit, 1st round, 3rd round and 2008 2nd round). Since St. Louis is asking for a prospect and a bunch of picks (per RDS), I'm wondering what they have left to give up for Guerin? Next year's first rounder? 2009's first rounder? The Zamboni and the women's bathroom?

If Waddell swings a deal that will send more picks to Saint-Louis, he should damn well be fired.
If he does do what I suggested (next year's pick) -although that probably won't happen- he would be throwing the Thrashers future away just so he can get two players who are in their late 30's and on top of it, would attract a lot of attention on the free-agent market.

Guerin ain't going to Atlanta, I guarantee it.

The Red Wings could use Guerin since Dan Cleary's been kinda "cold" for the last, say 2 months?
The Sharks, well, we know about 'em, but, they gave up their first rounder to Montreal last night, and it could be difficult for them to land him without sacrificing young players such as Joe Pavelski, Matt Carle or Marc-Antoine Vlasic...

The Senators have been on the up since Christmas and now are in posession solidly of a playoff spot, but, as we know, the East is known to be kinda tight and thin on the edges this season. After all, only 3 points seperate the 10th and 6th spot. Guerin might be a good fit here and he would definitely give John Muckler the presence of a playoff experienced vet amongst some young Senators.
He brings experience, strength, leadership and scoring ability (see 2006-2007 season stats...) to the table along with a sharp defensive side.

RDS, the french sister of TSN of Quebec, recently said the Canadiens also could be involved in negotiations with the St. Louis Blues; although this is likely less reliable (no pun intended), recently mentioned Montreal being in the race for Guerin.

Take these last two with a grain of salt, as RDS only suggested the Canadiens are involved and Eklund is a Habs fan and his trade rumours are usually biased.

And to top this off and to add more spark to the fire...Jeff Gordon reported out of St. Louis on his blog, that the Blues may sign Guerin to a 2-year contract extension.

And this is for your latest hockey news...

Bleu, Blanc et Rouge.

Can Karlis Skrastins's streak be over?

The new "iron man" among NHL defencemen, Karlis Skrastins of the Colorado Avalanche, saw his streak come to an end yesterday as he sat out the game versus the Ducks due to a knee injury.

TSN Ice Chips today, quote: " Karlis Skrastins (right knee) is scheduled to be examined in Denver today, and possibly undergo an MRI exam. - Denver Post"

Here is a more elaborate take from Yahoo! Sports

Hope his MRI reveals nothing's wrong.

Bleu, Blanc et Rouge.

TSN/Team 990: Berard requests trade!

Denis Casavant, on the local sports radio station in Montreal, the Team 990, just reported Brian Berard requested a trade out of Columbus.

He mentioned it as they were ending the show.

New Jersey is rumoured to have interest in him. The Ducks, Canucks and Oilers are all possible suitors.

Stay tuned...

EDIT: I overlooked TSN's article

Bleu, Blanc et Rouge.

Leafs to keep Tucker in fold for next 3 seasons...

FIRST UPDATE: Sportscentre is reporting it'll be a 4-year $12 million deal.

The Toronto Maple-Leafs have re-signed UFA forward Darcy Tucker to a 3-year contract extension, that will pay the gritty forward, an average of $3 million per season.

This, per TSN quoting this morning's Toronto Star.

The deal is designed for a possible fourth year, which would be structured around a no trade clause, and would allow the Leafs to get out from under cap problems if neccessary.

There isn't much info out there, this is all I can scrounge up for now.

Tucker had 19 goals in 39 games this season before an injury to his foot has kept him on the sidelines since the New Year.

Oilers meet with Smyth's agent again...

FIRST UPDATE: TSN is reporting talks are still going on with Smyth and that Raffi Torres, Joffrey Lupul and Petr Sykora are available.
They also note that Lowe is shopping Brad Winchester.

Kevin Lowe might go into panic-mode soon if Smyth is not re-signed.
Smyth is having a career year and he might be the jewel of this offseason's free-agent crop.

Come on, we know it, Ryan Smyth loves Edmonton, the Oilers are nothing without him.
If they lose him, they lose a born-leader, a scorer and a great guy.

You know what, give him the money he wants, give it to him, the 5 or 6 million he'll get, every penny will be worth it...if he can continue to help the Oil in the long run.

If only it were that easy to give a guy that kind of money and still have cap space leftover, unfortunately for Kevin Lowe, life is very complicated now as the Oilers are still questionable.
The word that perfectly qualifies them "questionable"...they are currently slumping and they earned only 6 out of a possible 14 points on their road-trip.

It'll be interesting to see how Kevin Lowe will manage his team, from today until tomorrow...can he bring in another Roloson that will save them?

Honestly, I don't know who can save this team...without giving up a truckload of youngsters.
I feel for you Oilers fans, I really do.

Bleu, Blanc et Rouge.

25 February 2007

Canadiens bid "adieu" to Rivet...

Well, Montreal Canadiens fans got their first taste of a trade, but it wasn't this one that they were exactly dying for, and no, it was nothing to do with Sheldon Souray.

About 15 minutes ago, the San Jose Sharks' official website reported the Montreal Canadiens traded long-time defenceman Craig Rivet to them, along with a 5th round draft pick in 2007 for Josh Gorges and a 2007 first round pick.

Rivet has been suffering from a severe case of pneumonia for all of February and was long rumoured to be dealt, especially after Habs' head coach Guy Carbonneau made him a healthy scratch. Rivet was quote "steaming" after he learned this and stormed out of the Bell Centre after a morning skate.

The Canadiens pick up 22-year old defenceman Josh Gorges in this deal. Gorges is a very good defenceman although, his offensive side has yet to show this season.

Gorges, in 47 games this season, has 4 points; 1 goal and 3 assists and is a -3 this season.

Rivet, him in 54 games, has 6 goals and 10 assists. Notably, he has struggled defensively and posts a mediocre -7 rating.
He will provide some much needed playoff experience on a Stanley Cup thirsty San Jose Sharks team.

A great pickup by GM Bob Gainey, really. He dumps an impending UFA who wore out his time here in Montreal for a young defenceman in Josh Gorges, whom will hopefully develop and mature into a fine defenseman for the years to come and become a force on the Canadiens' blue line.

BUT...with Montreal acquiring a first round draft choice from San Jose, is it too early to say it's likely they have agreed to trade their own to bring in a scoring player such as, say, Bill Guerin?

Is it really that far off? You never know with Bob Gainey.

And on a last note, as a Habs fan...thank you Craig, for what you have given us all these years with your leadership, strength and determination. Happy trails!

Bleu, Blanc et Rouge.

Boston Bruins demote Stuart and Toivonen...

Just in...the Bruins have demoted defenceman Mark Stuart and struggling goaltender Hannu Toivonen to Providence of the AHL.

This move is very odd as defenceman Andrew Alberts is already injured and sending down Stuart is pointless...unless a trade is in the works?

Given the Bruins recent success, they have fallen back into playoff contention and sit 6 points behind the Islanders and Canadiens.

They may want to bolster their blue line; and with the tradings of Brad Stuart and Milan Jurcina, their blue line is as thin as ever. A scoring blue-liner is the most likely scenario here, unless Peter Chiarelli decides Tim Thomas isn't up to the job of carrying this team into the playoffs.

With Toivonen down, the Bruins are a goalie short and they don't have much in Providence besides minor-league scrubs Brian Finley, Phillipe Sauve and recently-acquired Joey MacDonald off waivers from Detroit.

Stay tuned...

8 scouts last night at Kings-Avs game...

Over at the Denver Post, Terry Frei just reported 8 teams (rumoured to be Chicago, Vancouver, St. Louis, NY Rangers, Dallas, Boston, Columbus and Tampa Bay) were in attendance for last night's Kings-Avalanche game).

The possible shoppings from both teams are believed to be:

Brent Sopel: Los Angeles is rumoured not to want a mountain of players for him, most likely a mid-round draft pick. Sopel can be an affordable option for teams wanting to bolster their blue line. He is also more affordable than Sheldon Souray.

Aaron Miller: Might attract some attention for teams in need of depth...

Ossi Vaananen: With the injury to defenceman Jordan Leopold, Vaananen's chances of being dealt have likely diminished, unless the Avs make a same position swap and trade Vaananen for another defenceman.

Ken Klee: Klee is aging quickly and he has not been as effective this season as he was with Toronto and New Jersey last season. If he is dealt, he will be for at best a mid-late round pick for teams seeking depth.
Don't look for teams to sacrifice much or trade any young players such as New Jersey did (Aleksander Suglobov)last season.

Ian Laperriere: Slight drop-off from last season, Laperriere is a checking centre with a light offensive side.

© 2007 Bleu, Blanc et Rouge.

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