Sunday, November 30, 2008

NHL and Hockey Rumors for Dec 1, 2008

Al Strachan on "The Hotstove" of CBC's Hockey Night in Canada broadcast reported that the Calgary Flames are shopping Mike Cammalleri, and are looking for a rugged winger in return. Brochu's take: I doubt that he is being shopped, as his play has really picked up in the last few weeks.

Adrian Dater of the Denver Post believes that the Colorado Avalanche are still interested in Buffalo Sabres forward Maxim Afinogenov, and are still making inquiries about him. Dater also reports that interest in trading defenseman Brett Clark has been lost due to the injury to Adam Foote. Brochu's take: I'm pretty sure Dater reported this Afinogenov rumor sometime last year, but I'm not sure. There hasn't been much interest in Afinogenov from any NHL team. Source

Tim Sassone of the Chicago Daily Herald is reporting that the Blackhawks are possibly shopping forward Martin Havlat, who has struggled of late. He believes that the Montreal Canadiens may be interested. Brochu's take: The Habs have been looking for a high scoring forward, but I don't think Havlat would fit into their system. Source

The following rumors come from rumor-monger extraordinaire, Bruce Garrioch of the Ottawa Sun:

The Carolina Hurricanes are looking to shed some salary, and are shopping defensemen Joe Corvo and Frantisek Kaberle, and forward Patrick Eaves. Brochu's take: Eaves has not progressed since the trade from the Senators.

The Toronto Maple Leafs may ship defenseman Pavel Kubina to new GM Brian Burke's old team, the Anaheim Ducks. Brochu's take: The Ducks are pushing the cap, I don't think they will add another defenseman with such a high salary.

Tukonen for Hutchinson

The Tampa Bay Lightning have traded defenseman Andrew Hutchinson to the Dallas Stars for forward Lauri Tukonen. Hutchinson just cleared re-entry waivers Friday, while Tukonen is playing for Lukko Rauma of the Finnish league. Brochu's take: Tampa Bay may set the record for most trades this season!

Saturday, November 29, 2008

NHL and Hockey Rumors for Nov 29, 2008

Brian Burke has been officially announced as the President and General Manager of the Toronto Maple Leafs. It is a six year contract, believed to be in the $18 million range. Highlights from his press conference are:

-Cliff Fletcher is to remain as a consultant.

-He won't make trades before the Christmas trade freeze, and has a personal deadline of 10 days before that, which means he won't make any trades until the new year.

-One of his first priorities will be to make the team tougher, which could mean acquiring an enforcer.

-No mention of Dave Nonis, who has been rumored to be named the vice-president and director of hockey personnel.

-Burke tried to acquire Mikhail Grabovski from the Montreal Canadiens while he was the GM of the Anaheim Ducks.

-From his discussions with Mats Sundin, he doesn't believe the Leafs fit the profile that Sundin has stated.

The Washington Capitals have signed defenseman Bryan Helmer to an NHL contract. Helmer had been playing with the Caps AHL affiliate, Hershey Bears.

Ottawa Senators defenseman Luke Richardson has retired from the NHL. Richardson cleared waivers on Friday and will take a job within the Sens organization.

The New York Islanders have placed defenseman Thomas Pock on waivers.

Thursday, November 27, 2008

NHL and Hockey Rumors for Nov 28, 2008

Darren Dreger of TSN is reporting that once Brian Burke is officially named the new president and GM of the Toronto Maple Leafs, he will start shaping the team in his mode. The rumor is that defensemen Tomas Kaberle and Pavel Kubina could be on the trading block, despite their no trade clauses. Alex Ponikarovsky and Nik Antropov are also believed to be considered trade bait. Brochu's take: There has been no "official" signing of Burke, yet. As for Burke, there is a widely reported (but wrong) notion that he likes to build a team with North Americans and not Europeans. Don't forget he made a trade during the 1999 NHL Entry Draft to draft the Sedins.

Brochu's European rumor roundup:

Forward Michal Birner has left the Anaheim Ducks organization and has signed with Pelicans Lahti of the Finnish SM-Liiga.

There are rumours from Sweden that Columbus Blue Jackets goalie Fredrik Norrena may be signing with Linkoping. Norrena is currently the odd man out in Columbus. Source

There's also a rumor that forward Mikael Renberg will come out of retirement and play with Swedish Elite League team Frolunda. Source

NHL and Hockey Rumors for Nov 27, 2008

The Florida Panthers have traded forward/defenseman Wade Belak to the Nashville Predators for forward Nick Tarnasky.

The Tampa Bay Lightning have put Andrew Hutchinson and Jason Ward on re-entry waivers on Thursday.

The Columbus Blue Jackets placed forward Kirill Starkov on waivers Wednesday. He has cleared.

The Ottawa Senators have placed defenseman Luke Richardson on waivers.

Tuesday, November 25, 2008

NHL and Hockey Rumors for Nov 26, 2008

The Montreal Canadiens have some interest in Russian forward Sergei Zinovjev, who wants out of his KHL team Ak Bars Kazan. Zinovjev is reportedly unhappy with his coach Zinetula Bilyaletdinov and has stated he wants to move teams, although Ak Bars could refuse to let their star go. Brochu's take: For more on Zinovjev's situation, read here. Source

According to Bob McKenzie of TSN, barring a complete turnaround, Brian Burke will be announced as the new president and GM of the Toronto Maple Leafs at a afternoon press conference on Saturday. Sources say that MLSE has yet to make a formal offer, but has given Burke and his lawyer a "term sheet". A six-year deal (including what is left of this season) worth about $3 million (U.S.) per year and with the same level of autonomy that was guaranteed in writing to Toronto Raptors' GM Bryan Colangelo appears to be the offer, along with certain bonuses. Brochu's take: The longest love affair in NHL history is about to be consummated. Burke will have a national audience when he make it formal this weekend. Source

Mike Heika of the Dallas Morning News is reporting that several teams have inquired about young forward Jamie Benn. It's been speculated that the Stars might make some moves in the near future to shake their team out of their dissappointing start. Source

The Tampa Bay Lightning have traded center Wyatt Smith to the Phoenix Coyotes for future considerations.

Chicago Blackhawks forward prospect Petri Kontiola has asked for a trade. In a Finnish interview, he states that he wants to play in the NHL and feels that the AHL is longer a place for him. Source

Monday, November 24, 2008

NHL and Hockey Rumors for Nov 25, 2008

According to Bob McKenzie's blog on, Toronto Maple Leafs GM Cliff Fletcher may not be done with moves, and more trades could be coming in the next few weeks. Both coach Ron Wilson and soon-to-be Leafs GM Brian Burke denied any involvement in the trade. Brochu's take: Both Alex Steen and Carlo Colaiacovo have been in Wilson's doghouse all season, so it's not surprising that they were traded. It appears Fletcher wants to go out with a bang before Burke takes over.

Jeffrey Simpson of the Globe and Mail believe the Ottawa Senators should wipe the slate clean and fire GM Bryan Murray. Simpson blames Murray for all his personnel decisions, and suggests that Steve Yzerman or even Pierre McGuire should be the Sens new GM. Brochu's take: Simpson sounds like he has an axe to grind against Murray and former Sens GM John Muckler. Yzerman has a comfy position in Detroit and may not be quite ready for full GM duties. McGuire has been approached by many teams in the past, but seems happy with his position at TSN. Source

During the FSS broadcast of the Carolina Hurricanes-Florida Panthers game Monday, New Jersey Devils GM Lou Lamoriello was spotted taking in the game in a luxury box with Boston Bruins legend Bobby Orr. Brochu's take: The Devils play the Panthers Wednesday. But they don't play the Canes until January. Perhaps a little bit of scouting?

According to sources in Montreal, Canadiens assistant GM Pierre Gauthier has been spotted at the last 2 games of the AHL Springfield Falcons, the Edmonton Oilers affiliate. The rumor is that they are looking at forward Rob Schremp. Brochu's take: The Canadiens are looking for bit more punch in their offense, and Schremp could fit that role.

The Columbus Dispatch Blue Jackets blog "Puck-rakers" is reporting that "former Blue Jackets assistant general manager Jim Clark is in the building. He's now scouting for the Ottawa Senators. The interesting part of this, of course, is that the Senators are scouting the Blue Jackets ... again." Brochu's take: The Senators scouting staff have pretty much been setting camp in Columbus; you have to wonder when a trade will happen. Word is that the Sens are interested in Jason Chimera. Source

Stempniak for Steen, Coliacovo

The Toronto Maple Leafs have traded forward Alex Steen and defenseman Carlo Colaiacovo to the St. Louis Blues for forward Lee Stempniak. Brochu's take: The Leafs have made another blunder here. Steen, while currently struggling, has lots more potential than Stempniak, who has not established himself as a steady scorer in the NHL. Colaiacovo's injury history makes him questionable, but he definitely has the talent to be a top-4 defender in the league.

Sunday, November 23, 2008

Weekend rumor roundup for Nov 22-23, 2008

Here's the latest NHL and hockey rumor update for this weekend:

Bruce Garrioch of the Ottawa Sun speculates that the Montreal Canadiens might be willing to shop forward Alexei Kovalev in order to fit Mats Sundin into their lineup. GM Bob Gainey has renewed his interest in the Swedish free agent after previously stating that he will was no longer pursuing him. Brochu's take: The Sundin rumors are amping up again.

Vancouver Canucks GM Mike Gillis still has that 2-year, $20 million offer on the table for Mats Sundin, but if he can't sign him, the Canucks could make a pitch for Ottawa Senators centre Jason Spezza. Brochu's take: Could. However, given that the salary cap will go down next year, and the Canucks are comfortably under the cap, they might hesitate on adding a long term, expensive contract.

The Calgary Flames are shopping defenseman Adrian Aucoin. Source

The Buffalo News' Bucky Gleason is reporting that the Sabres should get rid of forwards Maxim Afinogenov and Tim Connolly, as well as defenseman Henrik Tallinder if the Sabres are to make the playoffs. Brochu's take: Afinogenov has been on the market for quite some time, but no one has been biting. Connolly's well-known injury troubles will scare off potential suitors. Tallinder's probably the only one that could attract some interest. Source

Garrioch on his blog stated that the Columbus Blue Jackets are interested in Sens defenseman Christoph Schubert. No word on what may be coming back though. Source

Saturday, November 22, 2008

NHL and Hockey Rumors for Nov 22, 2008

The Colorado Avalanche have reclaimed forward Jesse Boulerice off waivers from the Edmonton Oilers.

The New York Rangers have placed forward Patrick Rissmiller on waivers.

The Florida Panthers have placed Wade Belak on waivers.

The St. Louis Blues are desperate for some offensive help, and are rumored to be interested in acquiring Philadelphia Flyers forward Joffrey Lupul. There's also some interest in Washington Capitals forward Michael Nylander, who has been linked to the Chicago Blackhawks for some time.

Brochu's European and Asian rumor roundup:

Forward Claude Lemieux, who was trying to make a comeback to the NHL, is now rumored to be signing a contract within the next two weeks with the Worcester Sharks, the San Jose Sharks AHL affiliate. Lemieux played a few games with the China Sharks of the Asia League, but has now left the team. The China Sharks are also affiliated with San Jose. Brochu's take: If this rumor is true, than he's one step closer to his goal.

Chicago Blackhawks defenseman Prestin Ryan has left the organization and has signed with Adler Mannheim in Germany.

Thursday, November 20, 2008

NHL and Hockey Rumors for Nov 21, 2008

There's a rumor floating around tonight that the Chicago Blackhawks have traded defensemen Brent Sopel and Dustin Byfuglien to the Washington Capitals for forward Michael Nylander. Byfuglien was a late scratch from tonight's Chicago Blackhawks-Dallas Stars game. Brochu's take: Bob McKenzie of TSN reported that this deal was very close to happening, and it might have happened tonight. Stay tuned.

The Edmonton Oilers have placed forward Jesse Boulerice on waivers.

The Tampa Bay Lightning have claimed forward David Koci off waivers from the St. Louis Blues.

Brochu's European rumor roundup:

Colorado Avalanche defenseman Daniel Tjarnqvist is rumoured to be signing with Swedish club Rogle. Tjarnavist has been a healthy scratch for the Avs inevery single game this season. Source

NHL and Hockey Rumors for Nov 20, 2008

According to the New York Rangers blog on, there were several scouts at the Vancouver Canucks-New York Rangers game. The Detroit Red Wings, Carolina Hurricanes, Chicago Blackhawks, Philadelphia Flyers and the Phoenix Coyotes each had one scout, while the Los Angeles Kings, Florida Panthers and New York Islanders had two each. Brochu's take: Several of the East coast teams can be explained. However, there are rumors there are several NHL teams are interested in Petr Prucha, who has been a healthy scratch for a lot of games this season. There's also been a lot of speculation that the scouting teams are looking at Mattias Ohlund, who everyone knows by now is a UFA this summer. Source

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

NHL and Hockey Rumors for Nov 19, 2008

Sorry about the late update today, I will make another one tonight.

Bruce Garrioch of the Ottawa Sun is reporting that GM Bryan Murray could be stepping up his pursuit of Vancouver Canucks defenseman Mattias Ohlund, noting "Canucks GM Mike Gillis and assistant Lawrence Gilman were on the list of scouts for last night's Ottawa Senators-New York Rangers game". Brochu's take: Gillis did admit to looking at both the Sens and Rangers closely, noting their "makeup". Source

The Minneapolis Star-Tribune reports that Minnesota Wild GM Doug Risebrough was scheduled to attend the recent Ottawa Senators-New York Rangers game but could not make it. "Ottawa and the Rangers are two teams that could make sense for a potential Marian Gaborik trade. Bryan Murray, Ottawa’s GM, loves making blockbusters, and Rangers GM Glen Sather is buddy buddy with Risebrough," writer Michael Russo wrote. Brochu's take: Nothing will be done until Gaborik comes back from injury, but this is something definitely to chew on. Source

Bob McKenzie of TSN reported on his blog that there are rumors that the Minnesota Wild are very close to trading forward Marian Gaborik.

McKenzie is also reporting that "the Chicago Blackhawks, according to multiple NHL sources, have a standing deal ready to go at a moment's notice to acquire veteran center Michael Nylander from the Washington Capitals." The rumble is that the Hawks will ship out goalie Nikolai Khabibulin, but there appears to be a shortage of suitors. Source

The St. Louis Blues have claimed forward BJ Crombeen off waivers from the Dallas Stars.

The Minnesota Wild have placed defenseman Tomas Mojzis on waivers. He has cleared.

The Detroit Red Wings have placed forward Darren McCarty on waivers. He has cleared.

The Blues have also placed forward David Koci on waivers.

Monday, November 17, 2008

NHL and Hockey Rumors for Nov 18, 2008

The Colorado Avalanche have re-signed forward Paul Stastny to a 5-year, $33 million contract extension. The yearly salary cap hit is $6.6 million. Brochu's take: A bit of a hometown discount, as there were rumors some NHL teams were going to offer him a lucrative offer sheet (>$7 million).

The Dallas Stars have put forward BJ Crombeen on waivers.

Edmonton Oilers head coach Craig MacTavish ripped into undeachieving foward Dustin Penner on Sunday, saying that "you can't throw gratuitous ice-time at a player that's inconsistent." Penner has been benched for the last two Oilers game, and MacTavish questions his competitiveness and fitness. Brochu's take: You have to wonder how long Penner will last in Edmonton. Source

Brochu's European rumor roundup:

Swiss Nationalliga A club ZSC Lions Zurich is rumored to be interested in signing Carolina Hurricanes goalie Daniel Manzato for the 2009-2010 season. Source

Sunday, November 16, 2008

NHL and Hockey Rumors for Nov 17, 2008

Bruce Garrioch of the Ottawa Sun is reporting that the Tampa Bay Lightning are not finished with personnel moves, and is willing to move anyone not named "Vincent Lecavalier, Martin St. Louis, Steven Stamkos, Paul Ranger and Andrej Meszaros." Brochu's take: Is the equipment manager available?

The New Jersey Devils might be interested in Tampa Bay Lightning goalie Olaf Kolzig, who is available. Brochu's take: GM Lou Lamoriello will hold on for a few Weekes, (pardon the pun) but if the goaltending does not get better he will make a move.

"League sources" are saying that Florida Panthers have told GM Jacques Martin to cut $3 million in payroll, re-sign impending UFA Jay Bouwmeester and make the playoffs. Brochu's take: Good luck with that. Bouwmeester wants out of Florida and it will happen sometime this season, and most definitely in the off-season.

The Edmonton Journal is reporting that the Colorado Avalanche are willing to move forward Tyler Arnason. Brochu's take: Not much interest in an underachieving forward.

The Pittsburgh Penguins had placed forward Paul Bissonnette on waivers Friday and has subsequently cleared.

Brochu's European rumor roundup:

Free agent defenseman Bryan Berard has officially signed a one-year contract with KHL team Vityaz Podolsk/Chekhov.

New York Rangers defenseman Andreas Jamtin has officially signed with Swedish club Linkoping. Source

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Sydor traded for Boucher

The Dallas Stars have traded Phillipe Boucher to the Pittsburgh Penguins for defenseman Daryl Sydor.

Friday, November 14, 2008

NHL and Hockey Rumors for Nov 15, 2008

The Tampa Bay Lightning have fired head coach Barry Melrose. Associate coach Rick Tocchet has been named interim head coach. Brochu's take: The Lightning franchise is a complete joke right now. It looks like Al "The Spaghetti Salesman" Strachan was right after all. I'm looking forward to hearing all the humble pie that Mike Milbury and the media are going to eat once Strachan goes on The Hotstove tomorrow.

Anaheim Ducks CEO Michael Schulman filed paperwork with the National Hockey League earlier today that would grant all teams permission to speak with former GM Brian Burke.

Erik Erlendsson of the Tampa Tribune reports that scouts from the New York Rangers, Los Angeles Kings, Vancouver Canucks, Pittsburgh Penguins, Chicago Blackhawks, Dallas Stars, Philadelphia Flyers, Nashville Predators and the Toronto Maple Leafs" attended the Tampa Bay Lightning-Detroit Red Wings game on Thursday.

There have been a lot of rumblings and rumors that the Dallas Stars will make some major changes if the team does not improve their play in the next few weeks.

According to Bruce Garrioch of the Ottawa Sun, there were three Colorado Avalanche scouts at the Ottawa Senators-New York Islanders game. Senators GM Bryan Murray wants Av's defenseman Jordan Leopold and the Avalanche are interested in Antoine Vermette. Brochu's take: The Sens have been looking for a puck moving defenseman for quite some time now. Source

Thursday, November 13, 2008

NHL and Hockey Rumors for Nov 14, 2008

According to Bruce Garrioch of the Ottawa Sun, "a report out of Columbus indicated the Blue Jackets have targeted [Ottawa] Senators defenseman Chris Phillips and the talk is GM Scott Howson has contacted [GM Bryan] Murray. Phillips has a no-movement clause in his contract and would have to approve any deal." Brochu's take: There's been a Sens scout at every Columbus home game this season, so you never know. There have also been scouts looking at Nikita Filatov, who's currently in the AHL. Source

Kevin Paul Dupont of the Boston Globe is reporting that the Chicago Blackhawks are closing in on a deal with the Washington Capitals to acquire Michael Nylander. Brochu's take: One of the summer's "hottest" NHL rumors, Nylander still has a no-movement clause. The Hawks are still pushing the salary cap. Source

TSN is reporting that Carolina Hurricanes' GM Jim Rutherford was formally offered the dual position as president and GM of the Toronto Maple Leafs in August of 2007, at which time John Ferguson Jr. was still in place as the GM of the team. Rutherford ultimately refused the offer to stay with the Canes. Brochu's take: This kind of news is never good for the parties. It looks bad for John Ferguson Jr, and it looks bad for the Leafs. Going behind the back of a GM never looks good. Source

The Washington Capitals have signed defenseman John Carlson to a three-year, entry-level contract.

The Philadelphia Flyers have placed defenseman Lasse Kukkonen on waivers.

Brochu's European rumor roundup:

Tampa Bay Lightning defenseman Janne Niskala has officially signed with Frölunda of the Swedish Elite League. Niskala was given permission to play in Europe after passing through waivers. Source

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

NHL and Hockey Rumors for Nov 13, 2008

Brian Burke has stepped down as the GM of the Anaheim Ducks. Senior vice president of hockey operations and assistant GM Bob Murray has been promoted to general manager. Burke will remain on as special consultant to CEO Michael Schulman, but has been given a one week "break" which he can discuss and freely negotiate future employment opportunities as a GM in the NHL. TSN mentions it is now very likely that he will become the new GM and president of the Toronto Maple Leafs. Brochu's take: The longest rumor in the history of GM rumors can finally come true. Some in the media continue to speculate that the Boston Bruins and Chicago Blackhawks could also be pursuing Burke, but Toronto makes too much sense. It's close to his children, and his wife can easily get a broadcasting job in Canada. Source

It appears Jason Blake is already wearing out his welcome in Toronto, only in his 2nd year of a 5-year, $20 million contract. Blake does not have a no trade clause, but his contract and age essentially makes him untradeable. The Leafs have the option of trading him, demoting him or buying out his contract. Brochu's take: He's untradeable as the writer states. Demoting him would be another option, but I really don't see a buyout considering the Leafs already have Darcy Tucker's dead cap space on the books. Source

Brochu's European rumor roundup:

Kevin Allen of USA Today is reporting that free agent defenseman Bryan Berard is close to signing a one-year deal with Vityaz Chekhov of the KHL.

Adrian Dater of the Denver Post is citing a Swedish source that Peter Forsberg recently had another operation on his oft-injured foot. Brochu's take: He's tried different doctors, and even different skates. Maybe Forsberg should go dip his foot in the waters of Lourdes? Source

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

Roman Wick: This year's Fabian Brunnstrom?

According to Swiss reports, several NHL teams have been scouting Swiss forward Roman Wick, and there are rumors that he could be the next "Fabian Brunnstrom." (ie. the next hyped European free agent prospect.) Wick plays for Kloten Flyers, and was originally drafted by the Ottawa Senators 156th overall in the 2004 NHL Entry Draft, but was never signed to a contract. Wick's agent Christoph Graph said to "It is not a rumor, it's true: We are bringing Wick next season into the NHL." Up to 20 NHL teams have been scouting the Swiss forward, including the Vancouver Canucks, Montreal Canadiens and Detroit Red Wings. Brochu's take: He could become this year's overhyped European prospect. However, Wick does have two years in the WHL under his belt. With the early success of Brunnstrom, more and more NHL teams are scouting the European leagues for unknown talent. Source

According to Bill Meltzer's blog on, forward Patrick Thoresen wants to come back to the NHL next season. Thoresen is currently leading the Swiss Nationalliga A in scoring while playing with HC Lugano. "My goal is to play well enough to get a 1-way contract and become an NHL player again," Thoresen said. Brochu's take: He could be a nice player to pick up. However, he has to be put into a top-6 role to succeed. The Edmonton Oilers and Philadelphia Flyers are reported interested in re-aquiring the Norwegian. Source

Oilers claim Boulerice off waivers

The Edmonton Oilers have claimed forward Jesse Boulerice off waivers from the Colorado Avalanche. Boulerice was playing on an AHL contract with Colorado's affiliate, the Lake Erie Monsters. Brochu's take: A replacement for the injured Steve MacIntyre, I assume.

Defenseman Keith Carney has retired from the NHL. The 38 year old, who last played with the Minnesota Wild, had a few NHL teams interested in his services but decided to spend more time with his young family. Source

The Carolina Hurricanes have placed defenseman Josef Melichar on waivers, as per the TSN ticker.

Monday, November 10, 2008

NHL and Hockey Rumors for Nov 11, 2008

According to the Inside the Kings blog from the Los Angeles Daily News, the Kings may be shopping Brad Richardson or John Zeiler due to roster inflexibility. The two players are currently on one-way contracts and have been healthy scratches for most of the season. This also explained why the Kings did not pick up Buffalo Sabres forward Matt Ellis on waivers, even if they were interested. Brochu's take: I had reported that the Kings picked up Ellis on waivers, sorry about that. Ellis has cleared and has been sent to Buffalo's AHL affiliate. Source

The Colorado Avalanche has terminated the contract of forward Scott Parker for insubordination. Parker refused an assignment to the Av's AHL affliate Lake Erie Monsters and now is an unrestricted free agent. Brochu's take: He's not going to get much interest, especially with this kind of "insubordination." Source

According to the Puck-rakers blog on the Columbus Dispatch website, Ottawa Senators scout Nick Polano has been at every Blue Jackets home game this season. Aaron Portzline dismisses the Jason Spezza rumors, however he notes that an asking price of Nikita Filatov and a no.1 draft pick would "start the conversation." Brochu's take: An interesting tidbit about that Sens scout. I wonder who he's looking at, considering Filatov is in the AHL right now. Source

The Colorado Avalanche have placed forward Jesse Boulerice on waivers.

The Detroit Red Wings have placed forward Aaron Downey on waivers, according to the TSN ticker. Brochu's take: I think this is the second time this season.

Sunday, November 09, 2008

Weekend rumor roundup for Nov 8-9, 2008

It's been a busy week for NHL rumors, so here's what's been happening this weekend:

Larry Brooks of the New York Post believes that the Toronto Maple Leafs are already shopping defenseman Jeff Finger, who was signed to a four-year, $14 million contract this past summer. Brochu's take: Finger just came off the injury list, and they want to trade him? Source

Al Strachan reported on CBC's Hockey Night in Canada intermission program "The Hotstove" that the New York Islanders are shopping forward Mike Comrie around the league. Source

Pierre LeBrun also reported that the Detroit Red Wings are close to re-signing Henrik Zetterberg. The deal is rumored to be $7 to $8 million a year and the length could be up to 10 years.

The Denver Post is reporting a rumor that the Montreal Canadiens may trade goalie Jaroslav Halak to the Colorado Avalance for defenseman Brett Clark. Brochu's take: The salary cap implications don't make much sense here. At this time, Halak is no better than Budaj or Raycroft. Source

According to Slam Sports on, there has been an Atlanta Thrashers scout following the last three games of the Edmonton Oilers. Brochu's take: Maybe they were looking at one of their 3 goalies? Source

Jim Matheson reports that a trade of Ottawa Senators forward Jason Spezza to the Columbus Blue Jackets for Pascal Leclaire, defenceman Rostislav Klesla and either a first-round draft pick or a forward like R.J. Umberger would at "least tweak Ottawa's interest." Brochu's take: Is this a real "rumor", or is just a fantasy proposal like you see on message boards? Bloggers aren't the only ones making stuff up, folks.

Saturday, November 08, 2008

NHL and Hockey Rumors for Nov 9, 2008

Here are the latest rumors from Bruce Garrioch of the Ottawa Sun:

There appears to be a logjam in net for the Atlanta Thrashers and it's believed that goalie Kari Lehtonen is available. Both Garrioch and Al Strachan of HNIC are reporting that GM Don Waddell is shopping the 23-year old Finn around the league. Garrioch speculates that the Detroit Red Wings and Philadelphia Flyers will make inquiries. Brochu's take: The Flyers are pushing the cap as it is, so they won't get him. The Wings will stick with Osgood for this season at least.

The Florida Panthers are looking more and more likely to be dwelling in the division cellar, which has fueled speculation that Jay Bouwmeester will be traded. The Ottawa Senators are interested, but the asking price is forward Antoine Vermette. GM Jacques Martin has coveted Vermette for sometime. The Edmonton Oilers, Vancouver Canucks, Boston Bruins, Montreal Canadiens, New York Rangers, Philadelphia Flyers, New Jersey Devils and Anaheim Ducks are also interested. Brochu's take: Martin's time in Florida is running out, and if he does deal Bouwmeester this season, he won't have a job for long.

The Columbus Blue Jackets are shopping defenseman Christian Backman, forward Jiri Novotny and goalie Frederik Norrena. Garrioch believes there's not much interest in any of them. Brochu's take: For once, I agree with Garrioch.

Garrioch also believes that the Ducks will shop forward Bobby Ryan if they can't find a way to get him into the NHL. Brochu's take: I don't think that's a particularly good reason to shop a young forward.

NHL and Hockey Rumors for Nov 8, 2008

The Montreal Canadiens have denied a report in a Montreal newspaper that the team was up for sale and billionaire Jim Balsillie was interested in buying the team. Balsillie has issued an apology to the Canadiens for any misunderstandings he might have caused, and has flatly denied the rumour.

Mike Brophy of Sportsnet reported a player in the Dallas Stars team has told him that no one in the organization other than GM Brett Hull wanted Sean Avery on their team. Hull recently defended his decision to sign Avery, which has caused a split in the dressing room. Brochu's take: Mike Modano's recent comments would add fuel to that fire. How long will it take NHL GMs to realize that Avery causes more headaches than positives?

The Los Angeles Kings have re-claimed forward Matt Ellis off waivers from the Buffalo Sabres.

Brochu's European rumor roundup:

Forward Dany Roussin has left the ECHL Bakersfield Condors (Los Angeles Kings affiliate) and signed with HC Briançon in France. Brochu's take: Roussin was once Sidney Crosby's linemate with the Rimouski Oceanic, and put up huge numbers. He's never been able to translate those numbers into the NHL or at the pro level.

Friday, November 07, 2008

Carle and a 3rd for Eminger, Downie and a 4th

The Philadelphia Flyers have traded Steve Eminger, Steve Downie and a 4th round pick in the 2009 NHL Entry Draft to the Tampa Bay Lightning for Matt Carle and a 3rd round pick. Brochu's take: Carle could not find the ice time in Tampa. The Flyers finally get the puck-moving defenseman they've been looking for. Source

Thursday, November 06, 2008

NHL and Hockey Rumors for Nov 7, 2008

According to Darren Dreger of TSN, negotiations between defenseman Mattias Ohlund and the Vancouver Canucks aren't going anywhere and GM Mike Gillis is fielding offers for the defenseman. It's believed Gillis has talked to other teams about trading Ohlund, but he still has a no trade clause. Brochu's take: I really don't see Ohlund being traded yet, as it is November. If the Canucks are out of the playoff race by the trade deadline, than there's a possibility.

Dreger also quotes sources that say the Canucks have had discussions with the Tampa Bay Lightning about the availability of defenseman Matt Carle, who would fill a void in the event Vancouver is able to find the right fit for Ohlund. Brochu's take: Carle's stock has dropped significantly in the last two years. Source

Lightning GM Brian Lawton is "fielding interest" in goalie Olaf Kolzig and forward Radim Vrbata. Brochu's take: Kolzig would make a good fit in New Jersey, with Brodeur out for 4 months. No one is interested in Vrbata, who has no goals in 5 games at $3 million a year.

The Columbus Blue Jackets have placed forward Alexandre Picard on waivers.

Bruce Garrioch speculates that December 1 will be the likely date for Mats Sundin to come back and sign with an NHL team. Brochu's take: I'm not going to name any teams here, as all 30 NHL teams would like to have him. No one team has a clear advantage over another at this point.

Brochu's European rumor roundup:

New York Rangers forward Andreas Jamtin as cleared waivers and is rumored to be signing with HV71 in Sweden. Source

Wednesday, November 05, 2008

NHL and Hockey Rumors for Nov 6, 2008

Free agent forward Glen Murray is expected to undergo another ankle surgery next week. Murray and his agent Anton Thun believe the injury occurred before the buyout. Murray is expected to file a grievance with the National Hockey League Players Association and according to Thun it is possible an arbitrator could challenge the buyout and award the former Bruin full payment rather than the two-thirds he will receive over a two year period. Brochu's take: Regardless of the buyout situation, Murray does not seem likely to play in the NHL this season. Source

The Montreal Canadiens have signed forward David Desharnais to a two-year, two-way contract.

The New York Rangers have placed forward Andreas Jamtin on waivers.

The Colorado Avalanche have placed forward Scott Parker on waivers.

Brochu's European rumor roundup:

Tampa Bay Lightning defenseman Janne Niskala has been re-assigned to Finland after clearing waivers on Wednesday. Niskala will join the Finnish National Team, and will later sign with a club in the Finnish SM-Liiga. Source

Free agent defenseman David Liffiton has signed with Danish club Esbjerg fB Ishockey. Liffiton was not re-signed by the New York Rangers this summer.

Tuesday, November 04, 2008

NHL and Hockey Rumors for Nov 5, 2008

During TSN's broadcast of the NHL game between the Vancouver Canucks and Nashville Predators, analyst Bob McKenzie mentioned that Canucks defensemen Mattias Ohlund and Kevin Bieksa have both been in the rumor mill, and several teams have been asking if they are available. McKenzie suggests that teams with surplus offensive players, such as the Philadephia Flyers, could help out the Canucks, while at the same time shed some salary to fit free agent Brendan Shanahan. Brochu's take: McKenzie also mentioned the possibilty of a Joffrey Lupul or Jeff Carter moving. It will take a good package to pry those steady defenseman out of Vancouver.

According to the Sun Sentinel, Florida Panthers GM Jacques Martin spoke about the Panthers’ tepid start and noted that he’s considering moving some veteran players who aren’t producing. “When I look at our performance so far, I don’t think it’s good enough,” Martin said. “We made some moves in the offseason and some of our players have to be better. Some of our veterans have to give us a better performance.” Brochu's take: Since there's not exactly a surplus of veterans on the Cats' roster, I would assume he is speaking about Richard Zednik and Jay Bouwmeester. Bouwmeester continues to be rumored to be headed on his way out of Florida. Source

The Tampa Bay Lightning have placed defenseman Janne Niskala on waivers.

Martin Gelinas has signed a two-week try-out contract with Swiss hockey club SC Bern. He will be given a chance to participate in the European Champions Hockey League and may earn a full contract. Brochu's take: The mainstream media has unfortunately forgot to mention that this is a two-week tryout. Bern will decide on November 24 if they will sign Gelinas long term. Source

The news of New Jersey Devils goaltender Martin Brodeur possibly missing up to 4 months with elbow surgery has sparked rumors that they could be interested in Chicago Blackhawks goalie Nikolai Khabibulin or Edmonton Oilers goalie Dwayne Roloson. Brochu's take: While Roloson is the cheaper option, Khabibulin could be a better fit. With Brodeur out for almost the entire regular season, Khabibulin's contract won't be that much of a burden.

Monday, November 03, 2008

NHL and Hockey Rumors for Nov 4, 2008

According to Bob McKenzie of TSN, Brendan Shanahan was in Philadelphia Monday to meet with Flyer's GM Paul Holmgren. Brochu's take: Shananhan wants to remain in the East, and Philly is pretty close to his house and family in New York.

According to Mike Heika's Dallas Stars blog on The Dallas Morning News website, the Stars have signed forward Mark Parrish to a one-year, $500,000 contract, subject to a physical to be held tomorrow. Parrish was signed to an AHL try-out contract with the New York Islanders, but was free to sign with any NHL team. Source

The Vancouver Canucks have placed forward Michel Ouellet on re-entry waivers.

The Carolina Hurricanes have placed forward Dan LaCouture on waivers.

There are rumors that the 2009-2010 NHL Season may begin in Sweden, with the city of Malmö hosting the game. Malmö is currently building a new arena. Source

The Columbus Blue Jackets are rumoured to be moving one of their depth defenseman, and a minor trade could come in the very near future.

Senators trade Nikulin to Coyotes for Fata

The Ottawa Senators have traded disgruntled forward Alexander Nikulin to the Phoenix Coyotes for defenseman Drew Fata. Brochu's take: Looks like he got what he wanted. But with Phoenix's youthful lineup, where does he fit in? Source

Sunday, November 02, 2008

NHL and Hockey Rumors for Nov 3, 2008

The Toronto Maple Leafs are rumored to be on the verge of trading one of their surplus defenseman, and the most likely two are Ian White and Carlo Colaiacovo, who were on display in Sunday night's game between the Leafs and Carolina Hurricanes. "We've had preliminary discussions with a few managers," GM Cliff Fletcher said during the game. "And there will be a time I'm sure in the near future when a trade could be available for us. We'd be looking to move just one defenceman and hopefully get a forward in return that would fit into our scheme of things." Fletcher was also spotted in a suite with Hurricanes GM Jim Rutherford, who has been looking for a defenseman. Brochu's take: Stay tuned, there could be a trade brewing between these two teams. Source

Fletcher also dismissed rumours that he was interested in Atlanta Thrashers forward Ilya Kovalchuk and insisted he has not talked to the Thrashers about anything. GM Don Waddell claimed the speculation as a "wild rumour".

Brochu's European rumor roundup:

Ottawa Senators forward prospect Alexander Nikulin has demanded a trade or he will return to Russia. The 23-year old Nikulin has stated that he will return to Russia if the Senators do not have a deal in place by Monday. GM Bryan Murray has shopped the forward for some time, but no one was seriously interested. Brochu's take: This is going to happen more and more with Russian draft picks. Source

Minnesota Wild forward Petr Kalus has signed a contract with KHL team HK MVD Balashikha. Kalus bolted from the AHL farm team in October.

New Jersey Devils forward Erik Rasmussen has signed with Finnish team Assat Pori.

Florida Panthers forward Rob Globke has signed with Frederikshavn White Hawks in Denmark.

Saturday, November 01, 2008

Welcome to Brochu is Hockey, Mach II!

Hi everyone!

As you can see, Brochu is Hockey has a new look. It's been coming for a long time, and I hope you like it. It's a bit streamlined now, and I've optimized the site for widescreen monitors. Some of the links may not work, and some details need to be ironed out but overall, I think it looks really good. If some of you can't see the new look, I suggest clearing your cache. Feel free to leave a comment.

Thanks to everyone who have visited the site over the last few years! Hopefully, this new look will take Brochu is Hockey to the next level, whatever that is. ;-) Look out for new features in the next couple of weeks.

Now let's back to what you're here for, rumours!

Another Sunday edition of Bruce Garrioch's "Rumours Du Jour":

Hollywood producer Jerry Bruckheimer (of CSI fame) has backed off on its interest in building an arena in Las Vegas and has pulled its bid off the table.

Brendan Shanahan could be headed to the Montreal Canadiens, Colorado Avalanche or the Carolina Hurricanes. Brochu's take: Rumor is that Shanny wants to stay in the East, so that rules out Colorado.

The Anaheim Ducks may be shopping forward Chris Kunitz in order to make room for Mats Sundin. Brochu's take: Kunitz is probably on the market, but there's not much interest in him.

"Expect to see the Sabres move [forward] Ales Kotalik, who is making $2.5 million, before the March 4 trade deadline." Brochu's take: They might, but again the market is not strong for underperforming forwards with big cap hits.

"[Vancouver Canucks GM Mike]Gillis was telling anybody who would listen last week he is not going to trade [defenseman] Mattias Ohlund. As I told Gillis in an e-mail, he can deny he won't deal Ohlund all he wants, but if he doesn't get him signed before the trade deadline, then a move is a strong possibility. Oddly enough, Gillis admitted that "teams have called" on all his players and that means there's interest. He can't deny that." Brochu's take: That could be said about any player that has an expiring contract this season! And I could say that all 29 teams have interest in Sidney Crosby, and there's "no denying that".

The Anaheim Ducks have apparently jumped into the Mats Sundin sweepstakes: Brochu's take: I'll file this under "SC", as in salary cap.

According to Bruce Garrioch of the Ottawa Sun, the Senators are pushing hard for a puck-moving defenseman, and may be willing to part with a roster player. Garrioch suggests that the Sens could part with forward Mike Fisher or Antoine Vermette, who have both under-performed this season. Brochu's take: Fisher isn't going anywhere, but Vermette's name has been in the rumour mill for some time. Maybe the Hawks will come calling? Source

The "Between the Circles" blog on the Chicago Daily Herald website is reporting that the Chicago Blackhawks are looking for a top-6 forward, preferrably a centre, and another defenseman. Tim Sassone suggests they could send goalie Nikolai Khabibulin and defenseman Cam Barker to the minors, but they have both played well. Brochu's take: Like Sassone said, the Hawks are pushing the cap as it is. Unless they trade someone off their roster or demote them to the minors, they won't be making any moves. Source