Tag: trade rumors

Marek Zidlicky

Not a re-print: Zidlicky to Devils “imminent” (again)


It already seemed like the Minnesota Wild asked Marek Zidlicky to waive his no-trade clause to go to the New Jersey Devils once this season. That either didn’t totally happen or the two teams couldn’t cross the t’s and dot the … lower-case j’s.

Regardless, it seemed inevitable that the coach-bashing defenseman would end up out of Minnesota, and now Nick Kypreos and Devils beat writer Tom Gulitti are indicating that it could happen for real this time. Kypreos even threw out everyone’s favorite trade deadline buzzword of “imminent,” so it’s time for Devils fans to get excited/depressed depending upon how each one feels about the offensive blueliner.

The natural question of what the Devils will give up hasn’t been cleared up just yet. Kurtis Foster seems like the logical choice because a) Zidlicky downgrades him from “marginal” to “virtually irrelevant” and b) he didn’t dress tonight. That being said, Wild beat writer Michael Russo reports that Foster at least isn’t aware of being shipped.

Update: Foster texted Russo that he has, indeed, been traded. Expect an official post soon that discusses the trade a bit more in hockey terms.

Either way, it seems like Zidlicky will take his easy hockey-hating talents to the Jersey Shore soon enough.

If it falls through again, I’ll never trust the word “imminent” again.

(Or at least not for a few hours.)

Columbus still interested in hearing offers for Rick Nash

Rick Nash

Say what you will about Columbus Blue Jackets GM Scott Howson – he’s not sitting idly by as the trade deadline approaches. Howson has already loaded up on youth and picks with the Antoine Vermette and Jeff Carter trades, but Aaron Portzline reports that Rick Nash is “still available for [the] right price.”

Really, the only difference is that the Los Angeles Kings are no longer in the running (barring something really bizarre happening).

Plenty of other teams have reportedly shown interest in Nash, with the New York Rangers, Toronto Maple Leafs and San Jose Sharks making the biggest waves so far. Just about any contender with some cap space could conceivably get in the bidding, as long as they’re willing to pay the price in terms of assets and Nash’s $7.8 million cap hit.

The Carter trade only solidifies the notion that Nash will come at a significant cost since Columbus received a first-round pick and a talented young defenseman in that swap.

Moving Carter might relax a little bit of the tension for Howson to move Nash by the deadline itself. Much has been made about the off-season potentially being a better time to maximize his trade value since it’s likely that more teams could be in the bidding, but the pressure was really building.

Now Blue Jackets fans might be appeased by the fact that Howson got a nice package for a guy who clearly didn’t want to stay in Columbus.

If nothing else, hockey fans have at least one blockbuster trade to chew on, so this year’s general trade deadline time won’t be a total letdown – even if the day itself ends up being underwhelming.

More on the big Carter-to-LA trade: All sides seem happy with the move.

Reports: Canucks eyeball Ott, might settle for McLeod


Claude Lemieux never played for the Vancouver Canucks, but the team might as well use a turtling Lemieux as their third jersey logo at this point.

It appears that Canucks GM Mike Gillis must believe that his current corps of creeps isn’t sufficient because Nick Kypreos reports that they’re eye-balling Dallas Stars pest Steve Ott. In other news, Adrian Dater identifies Cody McLeod as a Plan B if Ott doesn’t work out.


As much as the team is defined by the Sedins twins’ brilliance, the Canucks also employ some of the NHL’s most irritating figures. Alex Burrows and Maxim Lapierre are about as grating as hockey players can get. Aaron Rome bends and breaks the rules. Even less direct offenders like Roberto Luongo and Kevin Bieksa generate significant scorn.

Adding Ott would make this team so despicable in many hockey minds that pun-lovers would need to work overtime. (My submission: Villaincover.)

The Canadian city has been breathlessly described as a northwest treasure, much like Portland or Seattle. Hockey seems to be the one area where things get ugly, though, as the team’s perceived evils keep getting upstaged by their most regrettable fans.*

Added value

Both Ott and McLeod would make the Canucks a tougher team to play against (McLeod already has 154 PIM this season).

Ott would fit in nicely with Burrows in the sense that for all his shenanigans, he’s a heck of a talent. While he lacks Burrows’ finishing touch, Ott’s offensive skills often get overshadowed. Beyond that, he’s notably versatile; as his appearance in HBO 24/7 might remind you, Ott’s a strong faceoff asset.

Kypreos reports that Dallas wants a significant piece for him, though, so we’ll have to see if the Canucks will get another huge injection of obnoxiousness – or a smaller one with McLeod.

* – To be fair, Vancouverites have done a great job of showing that the vast lot are upstanding folks.

Gauging goalie trade targets for the Maple Leafs

James Reimer, Darryl Boyce, Matthew Lombardi

The Toronto Maple Leafs are currently in the eighth spot in the East, but they’re floundering a bit. Aside from a mini-run here and there, you can attribute Toronto’s successes almost solely to its explosive offense.

Even in some of the lower moments of the season, GM Brian Burke has been quick to support his goalies – at least publicly – although that seemed to change on Wednesday. The Globe & Mail’s James Mirtle reports that Burke admitted he might test the market for some goaltending help.

Although Mirtle spent much of his story discussing younger netminders such as Ben Bishop, Jonathan Bernier and Cory Schneider, Burke indicated that he’s more interested in a quick-fix. That implies that the Maple Leafs are leaning toward a veteran rental who would cost less in a trade than “goalie of the future” types.

With that in mind, here’s a rundown of some of the most interesting targets who fit Burke’s specifications.

source: Getty ImagesEvgeni Nabokov – Yes, the New York Islanders have indicated that they want to re-sign Nabby, but would that really be the best move for a team whose short-term future is cloudy? It might be best to strike while the iron is hot with a goalie who isn’t getting any younger.

Nabby might not be tailor-made for the Toronto pressure cooker, but he’s playing great hockey and could provide the just-good-enough work to make them an interesting dark horse candidate. (Ron Wilson’s also familiar with him from their time together in San Jose.)

Tomas Vokoun – OK, I know this is a bit surprising, but if the Capitals clean house he’s a logical first choice. Vokoun is an experienced goalie with an expiring contract and plenty to prove. He’s the best option Washington has in net on most nights right now yet his reception keeps getting more sour. That sinking relationship could make for quite the bargain, especially considering Vokoun’s track record before this rocky season.

The point’s probably moot because the Buds and Caps might go head-to-head for one of the last playoff spots, but perhaps it shouldn’t be a moot point.

Antero Niittymaki/Curtis Sanford/Ty Conklin: The Maple Leafs could really reach in the bargain bin with one of these journeyman netminders. Sanford might fetch the highest ransom because he’s had more success season. Oh yeah, he also hasn’t been placed on waivers …


So what’s your take on Toronto’s net situation? Should they stay put, go cheap with a veteran or sell the farm for a Schneider-type backup? Do tell.

Breaking down the Kings’ chances of landing Rick Nash

Rick Nash, Jeff Carter, Roman Hamrlik

Falling in line with an argument I submitted recently, Bob McKenzie discussed the Los Angeles Kings’ chances of landing Rick Nash – and how they might be better off going with his Columbus Blue Jackets teammate Jeff Carter.

(That’s not to say that he’s better, the argument revolves around the fact that he’s easier to get and less expensive to employ.)

McKenzie also points out another logical possibility of renting Edmonton Oilers winger Ales Hemsky, but that would require Dean Lombardi and Steve Tambellini to really hug it out after those Bernie Madoff comments. (Not to mention the fact that the Kings would have to ignore how poorly their last deadline deal went with Edmonton, as Dustin Penner has eaten far more pancakes than he scored goals.)

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