Well it's been three months now and it's time that the NHL Today series comes back. I've been really busy with school and work lately that I haven't been able to fully participate with the B/R community I have come to love. Ironically, my last NHL Today article (on 9/19) stated this:
Brad Richards is not being shopped right now. Sources are saying that once the team is sold, the number one priority should be signing Richards to an extension.
Things are certainly looking different now.
Brad Richards and Mike Ribeiro
According to the Toronto Sun, the Toronto Maple Leafs may be looking West to solve their scoring woes. The Leafs currently average 2.26 GPG and have been shut out four times in the last eleven games. They obviously need scoring and the Dallas Stars could help solve that problem.
As of now, there have been ownership problems in Dallas. Someone has to go soon and with a proposed cap budget of $45 million next season, either Brad Richards or Mike Ribeiro will be leaving the team.
The Stars literally have no money to keep both here. Richards will be a UFA at the end of the season while Ribeiro has two more years on his contract at $5 million a year.
Who will get the boot first?
If the Stars do decide to trade Richards, expect the Toronto Maple Leafs and the New York Rangers to be the highest bidders.
Other news in Leafs Country
Young center Nazem Kadri may finally have some extended time up with the big boys this time around as various sources say that his chemistry with Kessel/Bozak could benefit both him and the team. If the Leafs don't make a big trade for a top center soon (i.e. Brad Richards), expect Kadri to remain on the Leafs for a bit longer.
According to the Calgary Herald, Jaroma Iginla is not on the trading block...for this season at least. For the past week, there have been various rumors stating that a few teams have inquired about the services of Iginla who still has two years on his contract.
The veteran winger was rumored to be going to either the Los Angeles Kings or the New York Rangers. While it made some sense for the Kings, it made little to no sense for the Rangers. It was about time this rumor was debunked.
Expect Iginla to continue performing very well for his team. However, Flames fans should remember this season as Iginla's last if the Flames fail to make the playoffs this year.
Other news in Flames Country
To those concerned about Marc Staal's hit on Flames center Matt Stajan, the hit was hard yet clean. I highly doubt any disciplinary action is taken against Staal. Check out the video to the right for a look at the hit in question.
According to the Boston Globe and various other sources, Marc Savard will see a doctor today to see if he clears to play or not. If he clears, the hot Bruins get hotter while they have a few salary cap issues to figure out. If he doesn't clear, this buys the Bruins more time to clear up some cap space for the returning Marc Savard.
Either way, cap space must be made soon. To many, there is one easy way of doing this and that is to get rid of winger Michael Ryder who has played fairly well over the past few games. Various sources are saying that if Bruins GM Peter Chiarelli doesn't find a suitor for Ryder soon, the GM might have to bury the winger along with his contract to the AHL for now.
The Flyers are hot and boy are the rumors even hotter right now. The Flyers recently traded prospects Maroon and Laliberte to the Anaheim Ducks for Syvret and Bordson. These aren't big name players in any way and in my opinion, the Ducks won this trade (I still believe Maroon has some potential if he keep his head in the game). However, defenseman Danny Syvret may be a big domino in this trade.
A minor league defenseman? A domino? Most probably a small domino as of now, but with the Flyers acquisition of another defenseman, one has to question whether or not a price defenseman is on the way out.
Why might the Flyers disrupt their great defensive corps just as it seems to have come together? To re-sign Ville Leino. Leino has been a superb player for the Flyers and I'm pretty sure Flyers GM Paul Holmgren wants to lock up this player that he stole from the Detroit Red Wings just months ago.
Names on the block? Most likely Matt Carle and Braydon Coburn.
Stay tuned for more updates coming soon!
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