NHL Trade Rumors: The Latest Buzz Surrounding Each NHL Team
August is the worst month of the calendar year. Summer slows to a halt, school starts back up, and the hockey season is still nowhere to be found. To make matters worse, the NHL has stove has become ice cold and the news well has completely dried up.
Nevertheless, hockey fans have a constant need for information. So here is what's left of it this offseason.
The Anaheim Ducks have had a solid offseason. The two main areas of concern for the Ducks were the health of Jonas Hiller, which is looking pretty good, and Teemu Selanne's potential retirement.
The OC Registrar recently reported that Selanne would like to return for another season, but whether or not he does will depend on his health. That's a step forward for the Ducks.
Brad Marchand was one of the catalysts to the Bruins' championship run. Unfortunately, he remains unsigned by the team.
According to ESPN, nothing is imminent with Marchand in terms of a new contract.
The Buffalo Sabres had one of the most active offseasons of any team in the NHL. The offseason shopping is complete for Buffalo, but there was some news out of upstate New York recently.
According to the AP, the Sabres have renamed their arena the First Niagara Arena. Just the final piece to a puzzle that has changed quite a bit this offseason.
It will be interesting to see the Calgary Flames hit the ice this year. The Flames are a team in transition that is struggling to realize which direction they are going to head in.
Meanwhile, the team recently brought in Scott Hannan as a reliable presence on the blueline. He was inked to a low-risk short term deal which is excellent for the team.
The Carolina Hurricanes had a fairly uneventful offseason. The big splash was the signing of Tomas Kaberle, which was a substantial overpayment on Carolina's part.
Now, the Canes are set to open training camp with the roster in one piece, hoping to sneak into the postseason this year.
The Chicago Blackhawks received some wonderful news this past week when superstar left winger Patrick Kane visited with his doctors. According to the Chicago Tribune, Kane and his doctors are confident that he will be ready for opening night.
This is obviously huge news, especially if Kane can return to 80-point form.
The Colorado Avalanche are still going to be looking to add some salary as the season approaches. The team is under the cap floor, so they don't exactly have a choice.
Sergei Gonchar is a player that could be moved before the season starts. The Senators are rebuilding and he doesn't exactly fit their approach. However, Gonchar is a veteran presence for a team that would love to add some quality blueliners as well as some salary.
Columbus Blue Jackets
After such an exciting and active offseason, the Columbus Blue Jackets are not exactly ready to stir things up any more than they already have.
Come October it's going to be on Jeff Carter and James Wisniewski to change the culture in Columbus. No more help is on the way.
Nothing is imminent just yet, but the Dallas Stars are closing in on new ownership, according to The Dallas Morning News.
Tom Gaglardi is reportedly in the midst of a long process of paper work and other technicalities to purchase the Dallas Stars. Obviously, this is the most important question mark facing the Dallas Stars this offseason, so a sale would be
Detroit Red Wings
The Red Wings had a characteristically quiet offseason. One player that will definitely not be back for the club next season is Mike Modano. However, Modano is also still on the fence about retirement, according to Sporting News.
The biggest news out of Detroit is Modano's potential retirement. That's a sign that it is the dead zone of the offseason.
The Edmonton Oilers are a growing team that could use the presence of some veterans. Thus, the news of Ryan Whitney's lingering ankle injury is a bit troubling. He is back on skates, according to 880 AM, but the vet is not pushing himself particularly hard at this point.
The Florida Panthers had a busy start to free agency but have predictably cooled off as the offseason has worn on. However, the club has been making minor tweaks to a roster that figures to be much improved from last year's dismal output.
Despite all of the activity, there is not a single move the Florida Panthers made that will spark playoff contention.
Los Angeles Kings
The main saga of the Los Angeles Kings' offseason continue to wear on. Drew Doughty remains unsigned and his holdout could last well into September at this rate.
The only thing the two sides could agree on is that a deal is not close, according to the Los Angeles Time.
The Minnesota Wild have been active on the trade market this offseason, which has opened the door for some of their younger prospects to compete for ice time in the coming season.
It's going to be interesting to see what the Wild are able to do this season with a revamped offense. They have some developing prospects in the system, but now is the time to find out what type of players those prospects are going to be.
The Montreal Canadiens and Andre Kostitsyn could be on the verge of a breakup, According to The Montreal Gazette.
Not only has Kostitsyn publicly voiced his displeasure with Montrea;'s coaching staff, but apparently the coaches aren't too happy with the Russian forward either. He has a bit of trade value, but his best fit is clearly in the KHL.
After reaching the cap floor with the arbitration award handed out to Shea Weber, the Nashville Predators have been making some minor tweaks to the bottom portion of the roster.
Also, the Preds' games will now be broadcasting on an all sports radio station, 102.5 the Game, according to the Tennessean.
New Jersey Devils
The New Jersey Devils and Zach Parise were able to come to terms with a one year contract after months of on and off negotiation. He is a definite candidate to be traded before the deadline, considering he will become a UFA next July 1st and a long term deal is far from certain.
At least one expert sees Parise either getting dealt by the Devils or hitting unrestricted free agency. Dennis Bernstein posted such to his Twitter account earlier this month.
New York Islanders
Now is the time for the New York Islanders. The Islanders have waited since 2007 for a postseason appearance, and with the development of the current roster and come minor additions, the team believes it is ready for to make good on the vast potential they have.
Unfortunately, the Eastern Conference is very crowded. The Isles will likely battle the Leafs, Canes, Candiens and Devils for that final spot.
New York Rangers
This offseason, the New York Rangers signed Brad Richards to a free agent contract, vastly improving their team. Four years ago at this time the Rangers signed Chris Drury to a similar contract.
Now, Drury has retired for various reasons, chief among them seeming to be the lack of interests in his services league wide. The Rangers bought him out earlier this offseason.
The Ottawa Senators have found themselves in a bit of a bind. They have more defensemen than they have room on the roster.
The top candidates to be moved are Sergei Gonchar and Filip Kuba, according to The Ottawa Sun, each of whom carries a significant cap hit.
The Philadelphia Flyers, who had one of the most radical offseasons of any team in the NHL, are still facing a trifecta of questions for the upcoming season. The team still needs to figure out what will be done about Sergei Bobrovsky and the rest of the backup goaltending position. Also, captaincy has to be determined. And most importantly, the health of Chris Pronger, a prime candidate to become captain, is still up in the air. Pronger hopes to be ready for the season opener according to Fox News.
The Phoenix Coyotes are going to face questions about relocation until the situation in their current residence vastly improves or they are actually moved. The latest rumblings involve a Canadien group that is prepared to buy the team, but there is no word on whether or not the potential owners will relocate or keep the team in Arizona, according to CBS Sports.
The Pittsburgh Penguins have a serious chance to return to the Stanley Cup Finals next season if, and only if Sidney Crosby and Evgeni Malkin are completely healthy. Malkin figures to be on track, but Crosby is the bigger concern of the two.
Sidney Crosby has been quiet about his health which some, including Steve Simmons of the Toronto Sun, find a bit unsettling.
San Jose Sharks
The San Jose Sharks were busy wheeling and dealing this offseason, acquiring talented veterans at the sacrifice of some prospects. In the case of the Brent Burns deal, top prospect Charlie Coyle was lost to the Wild.
Luckily, the Sharks were able to re-sign restricted free agent Logan Couture recently to a two year contract extension, according to the Gilroy Dispatch. The cap hit will be a bargain at less than $3 million per season.
St. Louis Blues
The St. Louis Blues now have some bids for new ownership, according to Sporting News.The team has been in a bit of limbo for about a year now.
In hockey related news, coach Davis Payne could be on the hot seat, and David Perron is likely to be ready for the start of training camp.
Tampa Bay Lightning
NHL 12 is set to hit the stores in a few weeks, and Steven Stamkos will be gracing the cover of this year's game, reaching superstar status in the virtual hockey world. The question is, are Stamkos and the Lightning ready to take the next step on the ice to become serious Stanley Cup contenders.
Tampa kept the core in tact this offseason, except for the departure of Simon Gagne, and could return to the Conference Finals if they are able to get some solid goaltending from Dwayne Roloson.
Toronto Maple Leafs
It has been an uncharacteristically quiet summer for the Toronto Maple Leafs. Toronto has focused a lot of their attention on getting Luke Schenn locked up long term, which there nothing new to report on. However, it seems Brian Burke has been involved in every rumor under the NHL sun. The latest involves Toronto interest in Chris Drury prior to his retirement, which according to CBS Sports was completely false.
The Vancouver Canucks are primed to be a Stanley Cup favorite heading into the 2011-2012 season, despite a disappointing finish to last season. The team will likely be without Ryan Kesler to start the season, though, and Henrik Sedin's undocumented injury from last postseason is still a mystery. Kesler spoke with the Vancouver Sun recently about his hopes to be ready for the opener among other things.
Tomas Vokoun was signed by the Washington Capitals this offseason to a low-risk short term deal which many considered to be the signing of the offseason. However, incumbent Michal Neuvirth is still hoping to get the starting gig, according to the Washington Post.
Neuvirth's competitiveness is admirable. Having two goalies battling is always beneficial for a team as it brings out the best in each netminder.
The Winnipeg Jets signed Swiss veteran goaltender David Aebisher to a tryout contract this week, according to Yahoo Sports.
Obviously this is a low risk shot in the dark for the Jets, but Aebischer was a curious choice. He doesn't have very much, if anything left in the tank.