While it won’t go down as a blockbuster trade by any means, the implications of it could be far-reaching for the Chicago Blackhawks. The Hawks traded recently-acquired center Marty Reasoner to the Florida Panthers for centerman Jeff Taffe and the biggest acquisition of them all for Chicago from this deal will be salary cap space.
According to the money geniuses at CapGeek, the Blackhawks are now under the cap by $138,000 after shedding Reasoner’s $1.15 million salary and picking up Jeff Taffe’s easily demoted $550,000 contract. The Hawks are still waiting for deals to be finalized with defenseman Jordan Hendry and forward Brian Bickell. Centerman Jack Skille is already squared away with a contract but the big one that remains is restricted free agent Antti Niemi. Whether he signs before his arbitration case is heard on July 29th or not remains to be seen.
One thing that is clear after this minor trade is that the Blackhawks are preparing to scrimp and save as much as they can to avoid having to potentially trade anyone else who would be vital to keeping the Blackhawks in contention next year.
The New York Islanders have claimed goalie Jean-Francois Berube off waivers from the Los Angeles Kings, the club announced today.
Berube won the Calder Cup last season with AHL Manchester, but the 24-year-old has yet to appear in an NHL game.
That the Isles claimed Berube could be evidence that Jaroslav Halak will not be ready to start the season after all.
If that’s the case, Berube would back up Thomas Greiss, with Stephon Williams expected to go to the AHL.
The Isles open their regular season Friday at home versus the Blackhawks, then play the next day in Chicago.
The Toronto Maple Leafs have claimed one of the more intriguing players placed on waivers — former Vancouver defenseman Frank Corrado.
Corrado, 22, was waived by the Canucks on Monday. The former OHL standout had appeared in 28 career games for Vancouver — including 10 last year — but was squeezed out of an NHL spot following the emergence of Ben Hutton, who surprised many onlookers by making the 23-man roster.
Canucks GM Jim Benning will receive criticism for losing an asset like Corrado for nothing. Several Vancouver pundits warned of exposing a young, promising d-man to waivers and those warnings ultimately proved accurate.
With Toronto, Corrado could push for playing time as the club indicated on Monday veteran d-man Sephane Robidas wouldn’t be with the team to start the year. That would leave the the Leafs with seven healthy blueliners: Dion Phaneuf, Jake Gardiner, Roman Polak, Morgan Rielly, Matt Hunwick, Martin Marincin and Scott Harrington, who can go to the minors without having to clear waivers.
Petter Granberg, another defenseman, is currently on IR.
In a corresponding move to the Corrado claim, the Leafs put forward Richard Panik on waivers. Panik, who Toronto plucked off waivers from Tampa Bay last year, appeared in 76 games for the Leafs, scoring 11 goals and 17 points.