The Edmonton Journal is reporting that the New York Rangers could be interested in restricted free agent Joni Pitkanen. Jim Matheson also suggests that the Carolina Hurricanes could be a better trade partner if they package Erik Cole and a draft pick. Brochu's take: The Oilers are going to think hard about trading Pitkanen this summer. As for the Cole thing, any writer can speculate about that. Source
Matheson also reports that the Nashville Predators will try to trade goalie Chris Mason once Dan Ellis has been re-signed.
The Palm Beach Post is reporting that Pittsburgh Penguins assistant coach Andre Savard will be the new head coach of the Florida Panthers. The same article is also reporting that Tampa Bay Lightning GM Jay Feaster will move to a lesser role at the club, while coach John Tortorella will be fired and Barry Melrose will take over. Source
According to Darren Dreger of TSN, the Toronto Maple Leafs were denied permission to speak to Joe Nieuwendyk about a position with the Leafs. Nieuwendyk resigned in April, leaving his position with the Panthers as a special assistant to the general manager. Source
The Dallas Stars have agreed to sign coach Dave Tippett to a three-year contract extension.
The Detroit Red Wings have signed forward Dick Axelsson and defenseman Logan Pyett to three-year, entry-level contracts.
The Tampa Bay Lightning have signed forward Evgeny Artyukhin to a two-year deal. He will officially sign on July 1, as he is still considered a restricted free agent.
There's a rumor that Nashville Predators defenseman Janne Niskala could be playing for Russian team Atlant (K. Mytischy) for the 2008-2009 season. Source