Saturday, January 31, 2009

NHL and Hockey Rumors for Jan 31, 2009

The Globe and Mail is reporting that Vancouver Canucks GM Mike Gillis's patience might be running out. "Your patience level is obviously determined by how you're playing," Gillis said. "My patience is at an end with the way this group has performed." Rumors have abounded that coach Alain Vigneault will be fired at the end of the current home stand, but Gillis has assured his coach that his job is safe. Meanwhile, Sportsnet is reporting that Pat Quinn and Vancouver Giants coach Don Hay have been rumoured to be coaching candidates. Brochu's take: There's a lot of pressure on the Canucks to make the playoffs, and since trades are so hard to come by, firing the coach would be the easiest option. Source

According to CKNW radio in Vancouver, the Canucks could be interested in Atlanta Thrashers defenseman Mathieu Schneider.

The Tampa Bay Lightning are shopping for an experienced backup with the loss of Olaf Kolzig for the season, and they could be interested in Toronto Maple Leafs goaltender Vesa Toskala. Toskala's name has been in the rumour mill lately. Brochu's take: I don't think the Bolts will had that much salary for a backup.

Peter Forsberg has ruled a return to the NHL this season, but has left the door open for a return in the 2009-2010 season. "There won't be any NHL this season, that's totally clear,'' Forsberg told Swedish television station SVT. ''If I can play it will be in the (Swedish) Elite League and MODO.'' Forsberg has actually signed for Modo, but won't know when he will play for them, due to his lingering foot problems. Brochu's take: So much for those Forsberg rumors, at least for this season. And if you're wondering, he cannot play at all for the NHL this season after signing with MODO, as the Swedish season ends sometime after the NHL trade deadline. Source

The Phoenix Coyotes have placed forward Joel Perrault on waivers.

Brochu's European rumor roundup:

Edmonton Oilers defenseman Josef Hrabal, who declined an assignment to the ECHL Stockton Thunder, has been loaned to SEL club MODO. Source

Thursday, January 29, 2009

NHL and Hockey Rumors for Jan 30, 2009

The New York Rangers have traded forward Dan Fritsche to the Minnesota Wild in exchange for defenseman Erik Reitz. Frtische cleared waivers on Wednesday.

The Anaheim Ducks have re-signed forward George Parros to a three-year contract extension. The deal is believed to be worth $875,000 annually. Brochu's take: It was supposed to be a two-year contract, but his moustache got an extra year.

According to USA Today hockey writer Kevin Allen, there are many players believed to be available before the March 4 trade deadline. Among the most talked about are Ottawa Senators forward Dean McAmmond, Los Angeles Kings defenseman Sean O'Donnell, Nashville Predators defenseman Greg De Vries and forward Radek Bonk. Allen also believes it's possible that the Anaheim Ducks could shop one of their impending UFAs, a group which includes Brendan Morrison, Steve Montador, Todd Marchant, Sami Pahlsson, Travis Moen, and both Niedermayer brothers. Brochu's take: Allen lists others, but they have been all reported earlier in rumors. I don't think the Ducks will shop anyone yet, as they are fighting for a playoff spot. Source

The Chicago Blackhawks are considering re-signing forward Martin Havlat. Havlat is in the last year of his $6 million a year deal. Brochu's take: Rumours of the Hawks wanting to trade Havlat have really died down. His strong play and injury-free status this year should get him a good contract in the offseason. Source

Wednesday, January 28, 2009

NHL and Hockey Rumors for Jan 29, 2009

According to Darren Dreger of TSN, the Pittsburgh Penguins are interested in re-acquiring forward Colby Armstrong from the Atlanta Thrashers. Dreger adds that GM Ray Shero may also be shopping defenseman Ryan Whitney, as the Pens are looking for a top-line forward. Brochu's take: Dreger lists more names, but those players have been rumored for quite some time. No point in reporting the same rumor again and again. Source

The Calgary Sun is reporting that it's a given that Flames forward Michael Cammalleri will sign with the Toronto Maple Leafs this summer, and the impending unrestricted free agent will garner a contract almost equal to teammate Jarome Iginla. Brochu's take: Cammalleri's strong play will get him a good contract, but I don't think he will get Iggy money. I would say a deal in the $5-$5.5 million range. Source

The Calgary Herald is reporting "internet rumours" that the Anaheim Ducks will trade defenseman Chris Pronger to the Flames.

According to Al Strachan on the Score, there is definite speculation that the Anaheim Ducks are shopping Chris Pronger. Pronger was asked about the rumors, and said that he has heard about them too. Brochu's take: Hmmm, this is more or less a "confirmation" that he is really on the trade block.

Strachan also reported that the Montreal Canadiens remain interested in Florida Panthers Jay Bouwmeester. The speculation is IF Bouwmeester ends up in Montreal, the Habs would then trade defenseman Andrei Markov to the Tampa Bay Lightning in the much-hyped Vincent Lecavalier deal. Brochu's take: That's a lot of dominos to fall in order for it to happen. I don't think this will happen.

The Minnesota Wild have placed forward Krys Kolanos on waivers.

Tuesday, January 27, 2009

NHL and Hockey Rumors for Jan 28, 2009

The Detroit Red Wings have announced a 2 p.m. press conference Wednesday at Joe Louis Arena, when they will announce the signing of Henrik Zetterberg to a long-term contract extension. Speculation is that the deal is in the 10-year, $70 million range, although reports tonight indicate that the deal is more in the 8-year, $58 million range. Brochu's take: A ten year deal is risky in today's NHL. Zetterberg will be in his late 30's by the end of the contract. ***** New update, 9:13 pm**** Zetterberg has officially signed a 12-year, $72 million contract! Brochu's take: WOW! A bargain at $6 million per, but the length still scares me. Source

Chuck Gormley of the Courier Post speculates that the Philadelphia Flyers are still looking for a veteran defenseman. Atlanta's Niclas Havelid, Colorado's Brett Clark, Phoenix's Derek Morris, Nashville's Dan Hamhuis and the Islanders' Brendan Witt are expected to be on the trade block in the next six weeks. With forwards Scottie Upshall, Joffrey Lupul and Mike Knuble, the Flyers have the assets to land one of them. Source

There are also rumors that the New York Islanders are shopping defenseman Radek Martinek.

The New York Rangers have placed forward Dan Fritsche on waivers.

Monday, January 26, 2009

NHL and Hockey Rumors for Jan 27, 2009

According to Sportsnet, the Ottawa Senators will either trade Martin Gerber or send him to the AHL on Tuesday. GM Bryan Murray confirmed that one team has had interest in Gerber, and that team is believed to be the Calgary Flames, who are looking for some goalie insurance. Brochu's take: Murray noted that he didn't want to take much salary back. The Sens may have to sweeten the deal with a draft pick.

The Chicago Daily Herald is reporting that the Blackhawks could be looking to add some veteran depth to their lineup. Possible targets could be New York Islanders forwards Bill Guerin, Mike Sillinger and Doug Weight, Los Angeles Kings forward Kyle Calder, Senators forward Chris Neil, and Toronto Maple Leafs forward Nik Antropov. Brochu's take: The Islanders are rumored to be conducting a fire sale, so all those forwards could be had. Not sure why the Hawks would look at Calder again, since he hasn't done much in LA. Source

Bruce Garrioch of the Ottawa Sun is that Maple Leafs GM Brian Burke will make a "hard run" at Florida Panthers defenseman Jay Bouwmeester. is reporting that the Boston Bruins could be after Bouwmeester as well, but it would cost either forwards Milan Lucic or Blake Wheeler to get him. The Bruins are looking for a top-4 defenseman. Brochu's take: If they trade Lucic, there will be a riot in Boston. And Wheeler is signed to a nice deal, and you just don't give up on young assets in today's NHL salary world. Source

Sunday, January 25, 2009

Weekend Rumor Roundup for Jan 24-25, 2009

Here's the latest NHL and hockey rumours update for the weekend of Jan 24-25, 2009:

Tampa Bay Lighting general manager Brian Lawton is denying talk that Vincent Lecavalier is going to be dealt Monday to the Edmonton Oilers for a large package of players and draft picks. Bruce Garrioch of the Ottawa Sun reported that the rumoured deal would have sent Lecavalier to Edmonton for three players, two prospects, two No. 1 picks and a third-rounder. "It's just a pipe dream that people think we're going to trade him," Lawton said. Brochu's take: Actually, in Garrioch's article, he describes how Lawton denies the deal. So in essence, Lawton had to deny the denial! I'm sure Lawton is happy he had to get out of bed to put the fire out on this one. Source

Garrioch in his article also stated that that Los Angeles Kings and "some team who wants insurance in the playoffs" might look at getting Ottawa Senators goalie Martin Gerber. Brochu's take: I doubt it. He cleared waivers already, and there's no way they are going to bring him up through re-entry waivers. Source

According to Larry Brooks of the New York Post, two sources have confirmed to him that the Tampa Bay Lightning are shopping forward Steven Stamkos. Brochu's take: I wouldn't put it past the Bolts, considering their crazy year so far, but I'm sure he's staying there. Source

According to Kevin Paul Dupont of the Boston Globe, the Bruins are likely to make a move in the next five weeks. Dupont speculates that it could mean bringing more character and playoff experience in the lineup. Dupont states that Edmonton Oilers forward Erik Cole and St. Louis Blues forward Keith Tkachuk could be good acquisitions. Brochu's take: Hmmm. Everyday there seems to be more and more rumours that Tkachuk is headed to Beantown. It would cost quite a lot to get him, but not as much as his last stint as a rental player.

NHL teams have stopped calling GM Peter Chiarelli about goalie Tuukka Rask, because he keeps telling them, "No!".

Dupont is also reporting that Philadelphia Flyers are willing to move forward Glen Metropolit and defenseman Andrew Alberts. Brochu's take: I don't think there's much interest in either players, but the Chicago Blackhawks have kicked the tires on Metropolit. Source

NHL and Hockey Rumors for Jan 25, 2009

According to Bruce Garrioch of the Ottawa Sun, the Anaheim Ducks might move defenseman Chris Pronger, and Toronto Maple Leafs GM Brian Burke may be interested. Brochu's take: Notice how Garrioch uses "if", "might", and "may", which doesn't mean much. Source

ESPN is reporting that the annual NHL awards show on June 18 will be in Las Vegas. Sources are saying that the ceremony is expected to be hosted by the Palms Casino and Resort. The NHL has long been rumored to be interested in exploring the idea of a franchise in the gambling mecca. Burnside suggestst that "perhaps moving the awards show there will give a sense of what draw the sport might have in Vegas." Brochu's take: Las Vegas still remains one of the most populous cities in North America without one of the major 4 sports. The arena deal there seems to have lost a lot of steam over the past couple of months. Source

Friday, January 23, 2009

NHL and Hockey Rumors for Jan 24, 2009

The Philadelphia Flyers have inquired about Peter Forsberg's services. Flyers GM Paul Holmgren has talked to Forsberg's agent about his health and the possibility of playing with the Flyers. Forsberg continues to skate in Sweden in preparation for a return to the NHL this season. Brochu's take: The Flyers lost out in the Forsberg sweepstakes last season, but it looks like they want to give it a try again. However, Philly's lack of salary cap space makes you wonder how they could fit Forsberg in their team. Perhaps a $1 contract? Source

Vincent Lecavalier addressed the trade rumors about him in a press conference in Montreal during the All-Star festivities. When asked if he thought the Tampa Bay Lightning would trade him before the March 4 deadline, he said, "I don't think so.". But Lecavalier also expressed his love for his hometown Montreal, saying that it would be his choice if he indeed was asked. Brochu's take: Not exactly a complete denial, is it? He sure seemed happy talking about his possible move to Montreal...too happy.

Jay Bouwmeester also talked about the trade rumors surrounding him. He's been happier than ever in Florida this year, but remains non-committal to signing an extension with the Panthers. Source

The NHLPA's executive board announced on Friday they have decided not to re-open their collective bargaining agreement with the NHL after the 2008-09 season. The current CBA will remain in place for another two seasons. Brochu's take: A smart choice by the players, given the present and future economic environment.

Phoenix Coyotes chairman and chief executive officer Jeff Shumway resigned on Friday.Shumway has relinquished his duties in order to focus solely on managing the other business ventures of team owner Jerry Moyes as president of Deer Valley Capital. Brochu's take: You have to wonder what the Coyotes "real" economic situation is. At some point, the team will have to cut payroll to the minimum, after all, a lot of their expenses are paid to the players' salaries.

Brochu's European rumour roundup:

The Edmonton Oilers and Tampa Bay Lightning are close to signing forwards Linus Omark and Johan Harju to entry-level contracts. Both taken in the 2007 NHL Entry Draft, Omark and Harju are among the top scorers for their team Lulea in the Swedish Elite League. Source

Thursday, January 22, 2009

NHL and Hockey Rumors for Jan 23, 2009

The Ottawa Senators have placed goalie Martin Gerber on waivers. In the likely event that he clears, he has two options: play for the AHL Binghamton Senators or play for a European club. Bruce Garrioch of the Ottawa Sun speculates that teams in Germany and Sweden have shown interest. Brochu's take: He will clear waivers. We may have seen the last of Gerber in the NHL, as he may go the way of another Swiss goalie, David Aebischer. Souce

Detroit Red Wings GM Ken Holland that the Henrik Zetterberg contract negotiations are nearing a conclusion, and a deal could be done shortly after the All-Star break. The deal is worth around $70 million range over a term of 10 years. Source

Brochu's European rumor roundup:

Goalie Marek Schwarz, who left the St. Louis Blues organization earlier this week to return to the Czech Republic, has officially signed with Extraliga club BK Mlada Boleslav. Source

Wednesday, January 21, 2009

NHL and Hockey Rumors for Jan 22, 2009

According to Pierre McGuire on the Team 1040 radio in Vancouver, an Eastern Conference team has already made an offer to the Florida Panthers for defenseman Jay Bouwmeester, but has "not heard from them for two weeks." McGuire also talked to several GMs, and one GM in the Western Conference will "do anything to get him.". Brochu's take: Perhaps Panthers GM Jacques Martin knows that he won't be re-signing Bouwmeester, and is waiting to see what kind of offers there are.

McGuire also added that the three NHL teams that are the most rumored to be making a coaching change are the Vancouver Canucks, New York Rangers and Pittsburgh Penguins. Brochu's take: Lots of speculation coming from Vancouver and Pittsburgh, but that's the first I've heard that Tom Renney could be on the chopping block.

According to a Binghampton publication, the Ottawa Senators will cut short goaltender Martin Gerber's conditioning stint and place him on waivers Thursday. Source

Brochu's European rumor roundup:

Defenseman Josef Boumedienne has left the Toronto Marlies and signed with Finnish team Karpat. Boumedienne signed a contract with the Maple Leafs this past summer. Source

Toronto/Minnesota Trade, Other Rumors

The Toronto Maple Leafs have traded forward Robbie Earl to the Minnesota Wild for forward Ryan Hamilton. Brochu's take: Leafs fans are in a tizzy after this trade. Source

The Dallas Stars have signed forward Colton Sceviour to a three-year, entry-level contract. Sceviour, 19, was selected by Dallas in the fourth round (112th overall) of the 2007 NHL Entry Draft.

NHL and Hockey Rumors for Jan 21, 2009

According to the Daily Times of Delaware County, the Philadelphia Flyers are rumored to be interested in Tampa Bay Lightning defenseman Paul Ranger. Brochu's take: Hmmm. The Flyers still need to clear around $2 million in salary cap space to fit Daniel Briere back in. Not sure why they would need another defenseman. Source

It's nearing the NHL trade deadline, so it must be time for the annual Peter Forsberg sweepstakes. Forsberg said he's skating in his hometown of Ornskoldsvik this month to test his right foot and ankle before making any decision about another comeback. "Where I will play in that case is a later decision," he added. Brochu's take: The obvious answer is the Colorado Avalanche, but there's speculation that the New York Rangers are interested, having lost out on Mats Sundin. Source

According to XTRA Sports 910 in Phoenix, several Montreal Canadiens scouts were at the Phoenix Coyotes-Detroit Red Wings game, and it's rumoured that the Habs have interest in 'Yotes defenseman Keith Yandle.

The Edmonton Oilers have placed goalie Dany Sabourin on waivers. Brochu's take: Long Island bound?

Tuesday, January 20, 2009

NHL and Hockey Rumors for Jan 20, 2009

According to Steve Kouleas of the Score program "Hardcore Hockey Talk", the Vancouver Canucks are rumored to be interested in an "big name" Eastern Conference winger. Brochu's take: Speculation is that it could be Bolts forward Martin St. Louis.

The Sun-Sentinel is reporting that Florida Panthers GM Jacques Martin may have to deal with the Jay Bouwmeester situation at the trade deadline. Martin said he hasn’t spoken with Bouwmeester’s agent and that “there’s no change in his status.” “We’ll talk to him in the near future,” Martin said. “The closer we get to the trading deadline, it’s an issue we’ll have to resolve. Right now, he’s playing his best hockey." Source

The San Jose Sharks have called up forward Claude Lemieux from the AHL affiliate in Worcester. Brochu's take: I thought it was complete longshot that he would be back in the NHL, but here he is. I'll happily congratulate Lemieux on making it back, and I'll be tucking into my slice of humble pie.

Sportsnet is reporting that the Detroit Red Wings and forward Henrik Zetterberg are close to a contract extension. It's believed the deal is in the 10-year range with the average annual salary to be slightly less than $7.5 million. Brochu's take: Good market value for Zetterberg, but the length of the contract is a bit scary considering the economic future of the NHL.

The Tampa Bay Lightning have claimed defenseman Cory Murphy off re-entry waivers from the Florida Panthers.

Brochu's European rumor roundup:

Goaltender Marek Schwarz has left the St. Louis Blues organization and is returning to his native Czech Republic. Schwarz, who was on his last year of his entry-level deal, left his team, the Alaska Aces of the ECHL, on Monday. Source

Sunday, January 18, 2009

NHL and Hockey Rumors for Jan 19, 2009

Here are some of the latest hockey and NHL rumors from Bruce Garrioch of the Toronto Sun: (Hmmm, is he getting two cheques for this?)

St. Louis Blues forward Keith Tkachuk is likely to be dealt at the March 4 trade deadline. The 36-year-old Massachusetts native would like to be sent to the Boston Bruins, but the B's are pushing the salary cap and GM Peter Chiarelli would like another defenseman instead of a forward. Brochu's take: Let the Keith Tkachuk sweepstakes commence!

There are rumours that the Atlanta Thrashers are about to trade defenseman Mathieu Schneider to the Buffalo Sabres in exchange for Maxim Afinogenov. Brochu's take: While this makes sense for Buffalo, I'm not sure why Atlanta would do this deal. Afinogenov is only a shadow of the player he was three years ago.

According to the St. Petersburg Times, the Tampa Bay Lightning have an interest in Toronto Maple Leafs defenseman Ian White. Source

Poll Results:

Do you like the new Brochu is Hockey?

64 (75%)
21 (24%)

Total Votes: 85

Thanks for voting!

NHL and Hockey Rumors for Jan 18, 2009

Here's the latest NHL rumor report from Bruce Garrioch of the Ottawa Sun:

League sources say the Tampa Bay Lightning have been shopping Lecavalier because his no-movement clause doesn't kick in until July 1 and that there's also a disagreement between co-owners Oren Koules and Len Barrie on what direction the club should take with its superstar. It appears that Koules wants Lecavalier to stay, while Barrie is telling GM Brian Lawton to see what he can get in return. Brochu's take: Al Strachan on CBC's Hockey Night in Canada intermission program "The Hotstove" also added that the deal seems to be stalling because the Montreal Canadiens don't want to give up defenseman Andrei Markov. Pierre Lebrun also stated that Montreal would be Vinny's top destination IF he was asked to provide a list of teams he would like to be traded to. Adds more fuel to the fire.

The Philadelphia Flyers are looking to move forward Daniel Briere, but the salary and term of the contract will make it nearly impossible. Garrioch suggests that the Flyers will move defenseman Randy Jones or forward Joffrey Lupul in order to make room for Briere. Brochu's take: Joffrey and Jones have been in the rumor mill for months now. But the Flyers will be forced to make a roster move once Briere is healthy.

"There's a lot of talk the [Edmonton] Oilers will move [forward] Erik Cole if he doesn't agree to a contract extension before the trade deadline." Brochu's take: Not if the Oilers are still in the playoff hunt.

"The Bolts are expected to send forward Adam Hall back to the [Pittsburgh] Penguins for a draft pick." Brochu's take: Very likely to happen.

The Phoenix Coyotes may hold a firesale at the trade deadline, with the likes of defensemen Ed Jovanovski and Derek Morris, and forward Olli Jokinen being offered up as the club tries to shed salary. Brochu's take: Garrioch and his "league" sources again. I don't expect a firesale until the summer though.

Edmonton Oilers GM Steve Tambellini confirmed that newly acquired goalie Dany Sabourin will not play for the Oilers, and will try to trade him or send him to the minors in the next week.

The New York Islanders are still looking for a goaltender after Wade Dubielewicz was claimed off waivers by the Columbus Blue Jackets. Rumour is that they are looking at Vancouver Canucks goalie Curtis Sanford, who cleared waivers earlier this week.

Saturday, January 17, 2009

EDM/PIT trade, Dubielewicz claimed by Columbus

The Edmonton Oilers traded goaltender Mathieu Garon to the Pittsburgh Penguins on Saturday for goaltender Dany Sabourin, forward Ryan Stone, and a fourth-round pick in the 2011 NHL Entry Draft. Brochu's take: Hmmm. This doesn't exactly solve Edmonton's three-goalie carousel. I assume Sabourin will be sent to the minors (via waivers.). This is a cost-cutting move as well, as Garon's salary has come off the books.

The Columbus Blue Jackets have claimed goalie Wade Dubielewicz off waivers from the New York Islanders. Dubielewicz had to clear waivers before he could play for the Islanders, after spending the early part of the 2008-2009 season with Ak Bars Kazan in the KHL. Brochu's take: Poor guy. He was at the pre-game for the Isle before he got called off and told he was claimed. It's strange that Columbus waited this long to get a backup, considering the amount of goailes available lately. Source

NHL and Hockey Rumors for Jan 17, 2009

According to Sportsnet's Mike Brophy on Hockeycentral, the Anaheim Ducks are not actively shopping Chris Pronger, but they are listening to all offers for him. Brophy speculates that the Los Angeles Kings and Florida Panthers are interested, but it's unlikely the Ducks will trade Pronger to a divisional rival. Brophy also suggests that there could a be swap for Jay Bouwmeester. Brochu's take: I agree with Brophy that he won't be traded to a divisional rival, although it has happened before (think Alex Tanguay). I don't think Florida is interested in adding such a big salary right now.

ESPN's Scott Burnside reported Florida Panthers GM Jacques Martin was on hand for Wednesday's Washington Capitals-Pittsburgh Penguins game and wondered if he were scouting the two teams as potential trade partners for defenseman Jay Bouwmeester, whom Martin might move by the trade deadline if he's unable to re-sign him. Brochu's take: Even if the Panthers make the playoffs, it's unlikely they will go far, and Bouwmeester has shown no indication that he wants to stay in Florida. The Cats are better off trading him before the deadline or they'll end up losing him for nothing in the summer. Source

Thursday, January 15, 2009

NHL and Hockey Rumors for Jan 16, 2009

Detroit Red Wings forward Henrik Zetterberg denied a report by CBC's Hockey Night in Canada's Elliotte Friedman that he's turned down a 10-year, $75-million contract offer from the team. "No, it's not (accurate)," Zetterberg said Thursday. "Usually I don't want to comment on that, but that's not true. I haven't turned down an offer of $75 million." The Red Wings and their Swedish star have been negotiating on and off since last June, but there has been no sense of urgency from either side. Brochu's take: Interesting that Zetterberg took the time to dismiss the report. A deal will be done, it's just a matter of time. Source

According to the Toronto Star, Maple Leafs GM Brian Burke is still looking to make trades, but nothing has been interesting. Burke was in Boston watching defenceman Matt Gilroy of the Boston University Terriers, probably the most sought-after U.S. college free agent available this spring. Burke wants to sign around five college free agents, hoping two will make it. On the NHL front, the Leafs are rumored to be shopping defenseman Anton Stralman. Brochu's take: FYI, this blog will be updated frequently AFTER the trade deadline, when college free agents are usually signed (March-April). Other rumor sites tend to shut down by then, but not here. Source

The New York Islanders have signed goaltender Wade Dubielewicz to a one-year, $500,000 pro-rated contract. Brochu's take: I believe he still has to clear waivers before he can play for the Islanders.

In other Islanders news, the team has agreed in principle with the Los Angeles Kings to play an exhibition game in Kansas City in September for the 2009-2010 NHL season. However, according to league sources this game could be perceived as a veiled threat of potential relocation if plans for a new arena on Long Island aren’t soon finalized. Brochu's take: Kansas City has been in the running for an NHL franchise for years, ever since they offered free rent to the Pittsburgh Penguins a few years ago. They have an arena with no anchor tenant. Source

The Ottawa Senators announced Thursday that goaltender Martin Gerber has been send down to the AHL's Binghamton Senators on a two-week conditioning assignment. Brochu's take: We may have seen the last of Gerber in a Sens uniform.

Brochu's European rumor roundup:

Free agent defenseman Keith Carney has signed with SC Bern of the Swiss Nationalliga A. Carney had "retired" from the NHL earlier this season. Source

Wednesday, January 14, 2009

NHL and Hockey Rumors for Jan 15, 2009

According to Al Strachan of the Score's Hardcore Hockey Talk, the Montreal Canadiens have made an offer to the Tampa Bay Lightning for Vincent Lecavalier. However, it's believed the Bolts want Andrei Markov in return, someone the Habs do not want to trade. The deal is still rumored to involve P.K. Subban and a 1st rounder. Brochu's take: More updates as this story begins to explode across the NHL.

Strachan also reports that various NHL governors have had informal discussions about a dispersal draft, if the Phoenix Coyotes do indeed fold. Meanwhile, TSN's Darren Dreger is reporting that the Coyotes are likely to be sold in the next two months, with current owner Jerry Moyes retaining as much as 20 percent.

Hartford Mayor Eddie Perez met this morning with commissioner Gary Bettman at the NHL Headquarters in Manhattan. He was there to update the commissioner on the status of Hartford's plans for a new arena in the city. Perez hopes to bring back NHL hockey back to Connecticut. Brochu's take: I got an idea, move the Coyotes to Hartford and bring back the Whalers. But only if they promise to play "Brass Bonanza" after every single goal. Source

According to the Columbus Blue Jackets blog "Puck-rakers", BJ's assistant GM Chris MacFarland was at the Air Canada Centre in Toronto last night, watching the Toronto Maple Leafs play the Nashville Predators. Writer Aaron Portzline also reports that two scouts from the Pittsburgh Penguins, one each from the Minnesota Wild, St. Louis Blues and Florida Panthers were at the Blue Jackets-Colorado Avalanche game on Tuesday. Brochu's take: It looks like teams are circling the Leafs, looking to pick up whatever's left. Scouts are at every game, but trade speculation seems to be picking up around the league.

There appears to be still no contract talks between the Minnesota Wild and free-agent to be Niklas Backstrom. There has been no indication that GM Doug Risebrough event wants the goaltender to come back. Source

Sanford on waivers, Columbus/Atlanta trade

The Vancouver Canucks have placed Curtis Sanford on waivers. Brochu's take: If he clears, the Canucks have promised to trade him to another team. Rumors are that the Columbus Blue Jackets, Dallas Stars and New York Islanders are the most interested.

The Atlanta Thrashers have traded forward Jason Williams to the Columbus Blue Jackets in exchange for defenseman Clay Wilson and a sixth round pick in the 2009 NHL Entry Draft.

The New York Islanders have held talks with free agent goaltender Wade Dubielewicz, who recently was bought out of his contract with Ak Bars Kazan of the KHL. Dubielewicz has talked to three NHL teams that are looking for help in the goaltending department. This could indicate that goalie Rick DiPietro's season could be over. Brochu's take: Dubielewicz has to clear waivers before he can play for the Islanders because he has already played this season with Kazan. Source

The New Jersey Devils have officially signed Brendan Shanahan to a one-year, $800,000 contract. He will receive approximately half of that for playing half of the NHL season.

Tuesday, January 13, 2009

NHL and Hockey Rumors for Jan 14, 2009

Montreal Canadiens GM Bob Gainey did not address the Vincent Lecavalier trade rumors directly, but admitted that he wouldn't mind adding an impact player. Lecavalier has dismissed the rumors as just that, "rumors". GM Brian Lawton has admitted that no one is untouchable on the Lightning but he is not actively shopping Lecavalier. Brochu's take: Like Bob McKenzie says, it's up to Lecavalier if he wants out of Tampa.

Scouts from 15 different teams - including three from the Florida Panthers, two from the Chicago Blackhawks and one from the Vancouver Canucks - attended Tuesday night's game between the Toronto Maple Leafs and Nashville Predators. Most of them were to watch defenseman Tomas Kaberle, but several other Leafs forwards were also closely monitored. Source

According to the Ottawa Sun, Senators GM Bryan Murray wants to "get a young player or two", but doesn't want a veteran with a lengthy contract. Sources are saying that the Sens went after New York Islanders defenseman Chris Campoli, but those talks are over. Brochu's take: Murray might feel safe, but rumors are that he's on the chopping block if they don't turn it around soon. Source

There's some speculation that the Boston Bruins could be shopping goaltender Manny Fernandez, but Boston Globe writer Kevin Paul Dupont has checked around the NHL that there are no Fernandez trade rumors. Source

Larry Brooks of the New York Post is reporting that the Rangers have opened negotiations with forward Nikolai Zherdev, who is due to be restricted free agent in July. Source

The Atlanta Thrashers have acquired defenseman Brett Skinner from the New York Islanders in exchange for forward Junior Lessard.

Monday, January 12, 2009

NHL and Hockey Rumors for Jan 13, 2009

Speculation around the NHL and hockey world is growing about the possibility of the Tampa Bay Lightning trading forward Vincent Lecavalier. Bob McKenzie notes that it's up to Lecavalier if he wants to stay in Tampa, or be traded. His no trade clause does not kick in until July 1st. McKenzie also noted that the the proposed deal with the Montreal Canadiens includes Tomas Plekanec, Chris Higgins, Josh Gorges, prospect P.K. Subban and a package of draft picks (including a first rounder ). Source

La Presse is also reporting that the Los Angeles Kings, Edmonton Oilers and New York Rangers could be interested. Brochu's take: Forget the Rangers, their lack of salary cap space is what prevented Mats Sundin from signing there. The Kings and Oilers have the cap room, but do they have the assets? Rumours are that any package from the Oilers would have to include forwards Shawn Horcoff and Rob Schremp. The Lightning would also like Alexander Frolov from LA. Source

ESPN's Scott Burnside reports the Phoenix Coyotes were penalized 25% of their portion of the revenue-sharing pot last season. Teams can only collect their share of the revenue-sharing money if they attain certain revenue and attendance targets. Also, the Coyotes last week laid off 18 staff members, approximately 10% of their staff. Rumors of contraction have spread through the league as well. Brochu's take: The CBC Hotstove panel were discussing the possibility ( and implementation) of the dispersal draft already! Before we talk about the "c" word, I believe the league and NHL will do everything possible to relocate the franchise first.

The Florida Panthers have placed defenseman Cory Murphy on waivers.

NHL and Hockey Rumors for Jan 12, 2009

Here's the latest rumour update from Bruce Garrioch of the Ottawa Sun:

The Edmonton Oilers are interested in Ottawa Senators forward Mike Fisher. GM Steve Tambellini would really like to add the hard-nosed player. Brochu's take: Fisher hasn't produced as his salary should indicate. I doubt the Oilers would want to add a long term contract like that.

The Oilers are, according to "league sources", still mildly interested in Jason Spezza.

The Senators, Vancouver Canucks, Montreal Canadiens and Los Angeles Kings are interested in acquiring Toronto Maple Leafs defenseman Tomas Kaberle.

Garrioch also believes there will be interest in Leafs forwards Nik Antropov, Matt Stajan, Alexei Ponikarovsky and Dominic Moore.

Garrioch also believes that the Columbus Blue Jackets would "love" Jason Spezza. He also adds that the BJs are trying to move defenseman Rostislav Klesla.

Garrioch reported in his blog that the Sens are looking to put goaltender Martin Gerber on waivers in the next few days. Brochu's take: Could this be GM Bryan Murray's last ditch effort to shake up his team? He certainly hasn't been able to do it with trades.

The Columbus Blue Jackets blog "Puck-rakers" on the Columbus Dispatch website is reporting that the Vancouver Canucks are expected to trade goaltender Curtis Sanford, and the Jackets are interested. It's also reported that the Dallas Stars could be another possible destination. Brochu's take: The Canucks do have to make a roster spot with the impending return of Roberto Luongo. The BJs have an abundance of draft picks that could be used to acquire Sanford.

The Phoenix Coyotes have placed forward Garth Murray on waivers.

Sunday, January 11, 2009

Montreal-Tampa Bay rumor?

During TSN's broadcast of the Edmonton Oilers-St. Louis Blues game, Darren Dreger reported during the 2nd intermission that there has been steady dialogue between the Montreal Canadiens and Tampa Bay Lightning about Vincent Lecavalier. Sources are saying that there are some in the Bolts organization who want to trade Vinny, and some who don't. Lecavalier's agent has flown down to Tampa to "quiet" down the issue and clear the status of his client. Dreger adds that up to 4 NHL roster players could be involved, and the deal could likely involve forwards Chris Higgins and Tomas Plekanec, defenseman P.K. Subban and draft picks/prospects. Brochu's take: The TSN panel also discussed Lecavalier's reluctance to play in Montreal and his huge contract. Montreal does want to make a splash this season, but a lot of things would have to fall in place for this rumor to come true.

Welcome to Brochu is Hockey, Mark III!

Hi everyone! Welcome to the new (new) re-design of Brochu is Hockey. The last version was too buggy and lacked a lot of features I wanted, so hopefully this will last a bit longer than the last one. Here are some of the new features:

1. Comments has been fixed. So now you can leave comments on each post.
2. Search box has been included. You can now search for rumors on your favourite team or player.
3. This should now look right on any resolution, if not, please let me know.
4. I've included the Label (or Tags) option, where you can click on your favourite team, player or country. It's in the middle column.
5. I've also opened the blog up to more contributions from readers! If you have a rumor with a link, you can send it to Replace the -at- with @...this is to avoid those horrible spam collectors. ;-)
6. I'm also looking for European rumors, especially ones concerned with players coming and going to the NHL from European teams, and vice versa.

Again, thanks for reading the blog!

NHL and Hockey Rumors for Jan 11, 2009

Welcome to Brochu is Hockey, Mark III! A more detailed post will be posted today to let you know all the upgrades. But back to the heart of the matter, rumors!

The Atlanta Thrashers have claimed forward Rich Peverley off waivers from the Nashville Predators.

According to TSN, free agent forward Brendan Shanahan is joining the New Jersey Devils, but the final terms on a deal has yet to be finalized. According to another source, it's believed to be a one-year deal. Source

In an interview with the Pittsburgh Tribune-Review, Jaromir Jagr saids he is happy playing for Avangard Omsk in the KHL, but might consider a return to the NHL once his contract expires. Jagr expressed that he would return only to two of his previous teams, the Penguins or the New York Rangers. Jagr also added that he would play for the league minimum with the Pens, citing a debt owed to Mario Lemieux with helping him out during the early parts of his career. Brochu's take: With all the rumors of players not getting paid in the KHL, Jagr might be back sooner than once thought. Source

Tampa Bay Lightning owner Oren Koules, Vincent Lecavalier's agent Kent Hughes and Lecavalier himself all denied that he is being shopped around the league. However, a Sportsnet report, and according to sources around the NHL, Lecavalier's been made "available", along with forward Steven Stamkos, at the right offer. Pierre LeBrun on Hockey Night in Canada's intermission program "The Hotstove" stated that Lecavalier could be had at the right offer. Al Strachan speculated that if the Montreal Canadiens offered Andrei Kostitsyn, Sergei Kostitsyn and Mike Komisarek, the Bolts might listen. Brochu's take: It would seem there are conflicting reports on whether Lecavalier is on the trade block or not. What is true is that the Lightning are definitely having financial troubles, and could be cutting salary soon. Source

On CBC's Hockey Night in Canada broadcast, it was reported that Peter Forsberg has quitely expressed interest in returning to the NHL, and Philadelphia Flyers GM Paul Holmgren is interested. Brochu's take: Forsberg is still rehabbing his latest ankle surgery, and probably won't skate until March, which is right around the trade deadline. If he decides to sign, I wouldn't expect him to play a game until April.

Saturday, January 10, 2009

Columbus/Chicago trade, waiver wire update

The Chicago Blackhawks have traded forward Michael Blunden to the Columbus Blue Jackets for forward Adam Pineault.

The Vancouver Canucks have placed forward Jason Jaffray on waivers.

The Nashville Predators have placed forward Rich Peverley on waivers.

In other exciting news, there should be a site relaunch in the next few days. I've been trying to get the bugs out, so I hope you will enjoy it.

Thursday, January 08, 2009

NHL and Hockey Rumors for Jan 9, 2009

The Pittsburgh Penguins have signed forward Jordan Staal to a four-year, $16 million contract extension that would begin in the 2009-2010 season. Brochu's take: Rumor has it around the NHL that this could be a sign-and-trade scenario, as speculated by TSN's Darren Dreger.

Toronto Maple Leafs defenseman Tomas Kaberle has hinted that he is willing to waive his no trade clause if he was asked. Kaberle added that he has not been approached by GM Brian Burke with any requests for a trade. Brochu's take: My guess is that Burke will hold on to Kaberle until the trade deadline, and wait for the best offer. But you have to keep in mind that Kaberle has already once used his no trade clause, in that infamous Jeff Carter rumor.

The Nashville Predators have signed defenseman Alexander Sulzer to a two-year, $1.3 million contract.

The Philadelphia Flyers have placed defenseman Lasse Kukkonen on waivers. Brochu's take: This is got to be the 3rd time this year!

Wednesday, January 07, 2009

NHL and Hockey Rumors for Jan 8, 2009

Sorry about the lack of updates, it's been a busy time for me.

According to a French language hockey website, the Tampa Bay Lightning are having serious financial troubles and have asked forward Vincent Lecavalier to waive his no trade clause. Brochu's take: There have been rumours that the "Bolts" are having money issues, but I doubt that they asked Lecavalier to waive his NTC, since he just signed a long-term extension. Source

Ottawa Senators Eugene Melynk made an announcement to the media assuring that he is not looking to make changes to his team at the moment. Rumors spread early on Wednesday that coach Craig Hartsburg and GM Bryan Murray would be both be fired, and replaced with Pat Quinn and Bob Nicholson respectively. There have also been speculation that Quinn could become the coach of the Pittsburgh Penguins once Michel Therrien gets fired.

According to the Team 1040 radio in Vancouver, the Tampa Bay Lightning have been scouting the Vancouver Canucks very closely for the past few weeks, and something could be in the works. Brochu's take: The Nucks and Bolts have been common trading partners lately; it wouldn't surprise if there is a trade brewing between these two teams again.

The Anaheim Ducks have traded forward Brad May to the Toronto Maple Leafs in exchange for a conditional 6th round pick in the 2010 NHL Entry Draft. Brochu's take: This makes this the 3rd time that GM Brian Burke has traded for Brad May. He did it in Vancouver, and he brought May into Anaheim. Does May have incriminating photos of Burke or something?

The Calgary Flames have signed defenseman Keith Aulie to a three-year, entry-level contract.

Brochu's European rumor roundup:

Forward Frederik Cabana has left the Philadelphia Flyers organization and signed with Austrian hockey team EC Dornbin. Source

Monday, January 05, 2009

NHL and Hockey Rumors for Jan 6, 2009

According to former New York Islanders VP of Public Relations Chris Botta, veteran forwards Doug Weight and Bill Guerin could be traded to bring back draft picks or young players to the Isles. However, GM Garth Snow has a "gentleman's agreement" with the players, so they would likely have to approve any trades. Weight has previously stated that he doesn't want to move anywhere in the middle of the season. Botta speculates that forward Mike Comrie and defenseman Brendan Witt could also bring back good assets. Brochu's take: The rumor is that Weight could be headed to the Columbus Blue Jackets, while the Colorado Avalanche are interested in Comrie. Source

The Puck-rakers blog on the Columbus Dispatch website is reporting that Blue Jackets ownership has given permission to spend more money on adding players to the lineup. Writer Aaron Portzline is reporting that a deal will likely happen in the next week or so. GM Scott Howson has contacted the Toronto Maple Leafs, Ottawa Senators, Pittsburgh Penguins, Atlanta Thrashers and New York Islanders, along with several teams. Brochu's take: Portzline adds that the Blue Jackets are looking at Pavel Kubina, Tomas Kaberle, Nik Antropov, Antoine Vermette, Jordan Staal and Doug Weight very closely. Source

Canadiens acquire Kemp

The Montreal Canadiens have acquired defenceman T.J. Kemp from the Pittsburgh Penguins in exchange for a conditional seventh-round pick in the 2010 NHL Entry Draft. Brochu's take: This should open the trade floodgates, as every GM was waiting for the Kemp domino to fall. ;-)

Sunday, January 04, 2009

Weekend NHL and Hockey Rumor Roundup for Jan 3-4, 2009

Sorry about the delay, but here's the weekend NHL and Hockey rumor report for Jan 3-4, 2009:

According to Pierre LeBrun of ESPN, the Ottawa Senators and Atlanta Thrashers have had talks, and it's likely that there could be a trade between these two teams. LeBrun believes that each team has what the other covets, and speculates that there could be a swap of defenseman Mathieu Schneider for Antoine Vermette. Brochu's take: The Sens are falling fast and they better make a move soon if they want to save the season. Source

It's Sunday, so it must be time for Bruce Garrioch of the Ottawa Sun:

The Florida Panthers are going to deal goalie Tomas Vokoun. Brochu's take: Vokoun's hefty contract, and his no trade clause, makes it unlikely he will be dealt.

The Toronto Maple Leafs are looking to move defensemen Tomas Kaberle, Pavel Kubina, Mike Van Ryn and forward Nik Antropov. Garrioch is quoting sources that Kaberle would OK a deal to an Eastern Conference team, and the Montreal Canadiens are looking for a powerplay quarterback. Brochu's take: I don't think Brian Burke is going to do any favours for a divisional rival, but who knows if the right offer comes along.

The Edmonton Oilers and Columbus Blue Jackets each had scouts at last night's game. Both are believed to be in trade talks with the Senators and might have a mild interest in Jason Spezza. Brochu's take: The possibility of trades between these 3 teams is high, but I doubt it will involve Spezza in any way.

Al Strachan on CBC's Hockey Night in Canada intermission program "The Hotstove" reported that both defenseman Jay Bouwmeester and forward Nathan Horton no longer want to play for the Florida Panthers.

According to Steve Simmons of the Toronto Sun, the Vancouver Canucks could be looking at Leafs forward Nik Antropov. Brochu's take: He can probably be had for a 3rd rounder in the draft. Source

Saturday, January 03, 2009

NHL and Hockey Rumors for Jan 3, 2009

Minnesota Wild forward Marian Gaborik will have surgery on his hip on Monday and will be out a minimum of 10 weeks. This will rule out any chance of Gaborik being traded before the trade deadline, as players that are placed on the long-term injury list are ineligible to be traded. There's a small chance that his rights could be traded right before the July 1st UFA deadline. Brochu's take: And so dies the Gaborik rumors. Perhaps Gaborik should have taken that $8 milllion a year contract when he had the chance; now no one will pay that much for a oft-injured player.

Bruce Garrioch of the Ottawa Sun is reporting that Senators GM Bryan Murray might be willing to shop 1st round pick he received from the Tampa Bay Lightning. There has been interest in forward Antoine Vermette and defenseman Christoph Schubert, but none of the offers were good enough for the Sens. The Edmonton Oilers and Columbus Blue Jackets are believed to have mild interest in forward Jason Spezza. The BJs might also be interested in Vermette and forward Chris Kelly and might be offering up defenseman Kris Russell in return, although the Sens are believed seeking a more established blueliner. Brochu's take: Hmmm...looks like Garrioch reads the Puck-rakers blog on the Columbus Dispatch, because this is essentially what they reported a few days ago, aside from Kelly's name being thrown in. Spezza's name continues to be in the rumor mill, but seriously, he won't be moved. Source

Brochu's European rumour roundup:

Forward Dan LaCouture has left the Carolina Hurricanes franchise and signed with KHL team Barys Astana. Brochu's take: There were rumours of this a few days ago, but I don't think there was much interest in where Dan Lacouture was going. Source

Thursday, January 01, 2009

NHL and Hockey Rumors for Jan 2, 2009

According to the "Puck-rakers" hockey blog of the Columbus Dispatch, there were two Blue Jackets scouts at the Toronto Maple Leafs - Buffalo Sabres game on Thursday. Brochu's take: Columbus remains one of the most-talked teams in the rumor mill. Source

Phoenix sources are saying that there is a rumor that involves the Montreal Canadiens trading forward Guillaume Latendresse to the Coyotes in exchange for defenseman Keith Yandle. Brochu's take: Yandle was a healthy scratch recently, while Latendresse has not met expectations. Perhaps a change of scenery is good for both?

Hot off the Winter Classic in Chicago, there are rumors that the Chicago Blackhawks have been invited by the NHL to open the 2009-2010 season in Prague, Czech Republic. The Chicago Herald is reporting that the Hawks could be opening the season in Europe, possibly with the Florida Panthers. Source

There are reports that an outdoor game could be an annual event, and the rumour is that New York and Boston are the leading cities in contention for next year. Brochu's take: A Rangers-Islanders game would be pretty exciting, as well as having a game in Fenway Park in Boston.

Poll Results:

Who will be the no. 1 overall pick in the 2009 NHL Entry Draft?

John Tavares
181 (69%)
Victor Hedman
73 (28%)
5 (1%)

Total Votes: 259

Thanks to everyone who voted in the poll!

NHL and Hockey Rumors for Jan 1, 2009

Happy New Year everyone!

The Columbus Dispatch hockey blog "Puck-rakers" is reporting that the Blue Jackets are expected to make a move in the next 7 to 10 days. Several teams have called about forward prospect Maxim Mayorov. There are rumours that there is a deal with the New York Islanders for Doug Weight, but it seems GM Scott Howson would be better off holding on their no. 2 pick until later in the season. Writer Aaron Portzline is also reporting that the Ottawa Senators would like to trade forward Antoine Vermette to the BJs in exchange for defenseman Kris Russell and a draft pick. There's also rumors that they are dangling goalie Pascal Leclaire, and the Sens are also interested in him as well. Brochu's take: As reported earlier, keep an eye on the Columbus situation. They may try to make moves to at least make the playoffs this year. Source

According to Sportnet's Hockeycentral panel, there are rumors that Pat Quinn could be named as the new coach/GM of the Ottawa Senators, and also as the head coach of the Edmonton Oilers if they fire Craig MacTavish.

The New York Islanders have placed forward Mitch Fritz on waivers.