Monday, December 28, 2009

Trade season begins...

With the holiday trade freeze finally over, which was very evident after today's deal between Columbus and Washington, expect things to really pick up on both the trade front and the rumour mill.

For those who missed it, The Washington Capitals traded team captain Chris Clark and defenceman Milan Jurcina to the Columbus Blue Jackets for winger Jason Chimera. This helps Columbus' need for defense, while it gives Washington another option up front. I expect Washington to go out and get another defenseman before the deadline, and rumours are flying today that that player could come from Toronto. Ian White or Tomas Kaberle are the only two that would make sense. Either way, Washington now has almost $5 million in cap space, and they are going to use it.

While there are some rumours that seem so far-fetched I don't report them, a pretty strong source of mine texted me today saying "We know Dion and Calgary are growing apart, Caps love this kid, and Semin would look pretty good beside Iggy". Speculation? Rumour? I couldn't get clarification either way, but it's something to keep an eye on. Yes, Semin just re-upped, but one year deals are always curious, as they are often done to increase trade value.

How on earth do the Habs trade Halak? I'm still hearing St. Louis loves this kid and is trying really hard to get him. Gainey is in a tough spot right now. He'd love to hold onto him to the deadline, but his value will never be higher than it is right now. Can we really count out Carey Price being traded? I don't think so...

In Philly, the Flyers are playing better but Jeff Carter is still available. The asking price, however, will be high. Philly wants a top d-man and a pretty good prospect in return for Carter. Leafs still wish Kaberle would bring Carter and a 1st back, not happening. The Kings LOVE Carter and some have to wonder if Steve Bernier could be in play.

I apologize for the lack of updates lately, December was crazy busy for me, as well I was sick for a week plus took a week vacation to Las Vegas. Things should be back to normal soon.

Exciting news, we are starting work on a new website which we hope to have ready sometime around the trade deadline. Also, next Monday I start my intern position at the Hockey News, which can only lead to me more sources and thus lead you to more rumours. For the latest, make sure to check out

Saturday, December 05, 2009

Some Saturday Predictions

First off, what an effort by the Montreal Canadiens last night. The team had an awful week and things didn't look good heading into centennial night last night at the Bell Centre. The team came out, destroyed the Bruins, and made themselves look like a very good hockey club. The question now is, can the Habs keep this momentum up and turn it into something productive? The next few games are key for the Habs.

As for the Bruins, they head home to play a surging Toronto team tonight. As a Leaf fan, I am excited for this game, but I feel the Bruins will take it. The team will be looking to rebound tonight, Rask is playing the team that gave up on him, and the Bruins are playing Phil Kessel, a player their fans truly miss. While I think it will be a great game, I feel like Joey Mac's luck is going to run out eventually, and tonight seems like a fitting night for that to happen. As a Leaf fan, I hope I'm wrong. Either way, should be a great game in Boston tonight. Toronto's motivation for tonight? I win could put them as close as four points back of a playoff spot, with a game in hand. There's still a lot of hockey to be played this season.

Do the Western Conference standings scare anyone else? LA, Colorado, Nashville and Phoenix currently sit 4,5,6,7. Did anyone expect ANY of these teams to compete this season? With that said, Colorado seems to be coming back to earth, winning only three of their last ten. My prediction: Only one of those four make the playoffs when all is said and done.

The bottom half of the West is just as disturbing as the top. Detroit and Vancouver are both on the outside looking in, while Anaheim sits in dead last. Changes could come in all three of these cities if things don't turn around pretty soon, maybe save for Detroit, who has been crippled with injuries, though this team's weak goaltending is finally being exposed.

Nobody was surprised when Stevens was fired in Philly, but was Laviolette the right choice to replace him? I'm going to say no, I feel there were better options out there. Either way, there is no excuse for Philly being out of the playoffs, this team is stacked and should be a Stanley Cup favourite. The next move for this team is to move a centre, they're trying.

Afternoon action today has Vancouver and Carolina currently tied at one. That goaltending battle of Raycroft vs. Legace is going to make for a great game...

The puck is just about to drop on the Oilers/Dallas game, what a rivalry that used to be.

For all the latest, please check, our forums, and of coarse our twitter, which has broken many stories this week including the Montreal/Anaheim trade, Tlusty's threats of going to the KHL and John Stevens being fired. Check that out here

Wednesday, December 02, 2009

Things are starting to happen

Finally we see some player movement in the NHL. It started last week with Latendresse being traded for Pouliot. Then last night, I got word that Chipchura was on the move (we broke the deal 12 hours before anyone else via twitter, so make sure to follow @Hockeyleaks). Now today, another interesting move: Christensen claimed on waivers by the Rangers, who then put Stephen Valiquette on waivers. Interesting move by the Rangers, who are now without a backup with any NHL experience. Onto today's rumours:

- The Habs don't appear to be done. The team is lacking a bonafide finisher, and that has been clear all season long. I still think Halak gets moved to bring in some offense.

- The Leafs are looking for another goalie, and if they claim Valiquette I wouldn't be at all surprised. Don't expect them to go after a big contract like Giguere, but more so someone that's not as good as The Monster but better than Macdonald. Maybe a Roloson or Biron from NYI? Personally, I'm a fan of the Leafs claiming Valiquette.

- The Blue Jackets and Senators are working on a deal that would swap an Ottawa d-man for a Columbus winger. No specifics yet, but Campoli was a healthy scratch for Ottawa. With that said, it sounds like Columbus is looking for more of a defensive d-man. Hearing Brian Lee could be an option. Columbus is shopping Torres.

- Carolina is shopping Aaron Ward and Matt Cullen. The team would love to call up some youth but cap restraints won't allow much to happen. Expect Carolina to make a move before the holiday roster freeze.

Monday, November 23, 2009

Leafs/Hawks nearing deal?

As was reported by AM 640 today, the Leafs and Blackhawks are talking trade and it could go down today, though I am hearing tomorrow is a more likely day for something to happen. Internet rumours suggest it could be Sopel and a 2nd or 3rd headed to Toronto, with the return to Chicago at this point unknown. The Hawks have been scouting the Marlies this week, and sources tell that Tlusty is a player Chicago has an eye for. I will tell you this: if Tlusty is involved, the return from Chicago would be better than Sopel and a pick. Do not be surprised to see a guy like Versteeg or Sharp involved, as that is what Brian Burke is really pushing for.

Sounds like Georges Laraque will get between four and six games for his hit. Sources tell that the league was looking at four games but Bob Gainey himself asked that the league give him an addional two. Thats sending a message.

Things are not good in Minnesota right now, and I'm hearing Josh Harding is being shopped in hopes of bringing back some offensive talent. The Havlat experiment is failing at this point.

We are still looking to recruit more team bloggers, as well as bloggers for a new project that I am about to start. For information on both, please email me at

Remember to follow me on twitter for the latest updates. @Hockeyleaks

Tuesday, November 17, 2009

Blackhawks heading for trouble

While Chicago fans will be thrilled that Kane, Toews and Keith are all locked up long-term, the fact of the matter is that these kids are RFA's and were never a real threat to be going anywhere.

What isn't good news for Chicago fans is that they are now officially in cap hell. Toews and Kane are getting $6 million each, while I'm hearing Keith's deal will be between $4 and $5, so lets say $4.5. Total = $16 on three players.

This brings the the Blackhawks' cap number to $58 million on 14 players. The cap, which is going to go down next year (according to just about everyone I talk to) and I just don't see how the Hawks are going to do it.

Brian Campbell makes the most out of any Blackhawk at $7.15 million, and I just don't see that contract being moved. Huet makes $5.6 and the team may be able to get out from that via trade, but it won't be easy, not to mention it will leave the Hawks without a goalie. Niemi is an RFA after this season.

Andrew Ladd will also be an RFA, but if he wants any type of raise you can expect him to be somewhere else, maybe even by this year's deadline. Madden, Eager and Burrish are all UFA's, and if any want more than league min, they'll be going elsewhere next season.

Yes, the Blackhawka are full of star power, but exactly who is left on this roster come 2010-2011, I really couldn't guess. You have to think that a few of Seabrook, Barker, Versteeg, Sharp, Bolland and Byfuglien (and by a few, I think 3-4) may have to be sacrificed in order for this team to squeeze under the cap.

If you were the Hawks, how would you get them under the cap? Stop by the forums and answer that in the "question of the day forum".

We're still looking for more team bloggers so if you want your work exposed, send me an email to

Monday, November 09, 2009

Rangers could use help down the middle...

The New York Rangers were interested in bringing in another centre already, but today's news that Brandon Dubinsky will miss 3-6 weeks with a broken hand means the search for another centre will likely be turned up. With Dubinsky out and Drury playing like he doesn't belong in the NHL, the Rangers are dangerously thin down the middle. Vinny Prospal is saving this team at this point.

Manny Legace is back in the NHL after signing a one-year, $500,000 deal with the Carolina Hurricanes. This should put an end to the Toskala-to-Carolina rumours we reported yesterday.

You have to think with all the injuries the Red Wings are dealing with that they'll be looking to bring in some help, but Ken Holland continues to tell the media he's not looking at any quick fixes. With that said, has learned that Holland has made a few calls around the league to see what sort of cheap help is available.

One player apparently on Detroit's roster is Miroslav Satan, who apparently is close to making a decision on returning to the NHL. Satan has two or three offers, and while none of them are from Detroit, I wouldn't be surprised if one is made in the next few days. Two confirmed teams who have made contact with Satan? Minnesota and Atlanta.

Make sure to follow us on twitter @hockeyleaks, and check for all the latest.

Sunday, November 08, 2009

Canes show interest in Toskala?

With Cam Ward still in the hospital, it was announced today that Carolina is looking at adding goaltending depth to their team. I was told by a source today that one player the team has looked at is Vesa Toskala. Toskala is in the final year of a $4 million per year deal, and is one of the few potential starting goaltenders available on the trade market. To offset the cost, the Leafs would take one of three players in return: Walker, Samsonov, or Cullen. While these tlaks are in the very early stages, I wouldn't be shocked to see these two teams, who find themselves in 14th and 15h in the east, make a trade.

The Caps have placed Nylander on waivers. Nobody is going to take him unless he hits re-entry waivers, and even that is unlikely.

Bruce Garrioch suggests the dallas stars are seeking a big forward, and speculates that Dallas and Toronto could be working on a deal. Poni is the name that comes to mind. Garrioch also says the Panthers are shopping Horton and once again, Toronto could be involved.

Forsberg is still talking with KHL and NHL teams. If he does return to the NHL, Vancouver and NYR are the two teams with the most interest, though never say never when it comes to Detroit and Colorado.

The Oilers are shopping for a d-man and Kevin Lowe has been heavily scouting the lightning. Meszaros and Lukas Krajicek are the two players to watch on this front.

Rumours continue to swirl that the Habs have interest in Chris Chelios. He's played really well for the AHL's Chicago Wolves thus far.

For more check as well as our forum's.

Thursday, November 05, 2009

Nov. 5 Rumours!

We start in Tampa Bay, where a team with so much talent continues to struggle. Alex Tanguay, where are you? Several sources tell me that Vinny could be dealt sometime in the new year, though the trade deadline makes the most sense. The usual (Montreal, NYR) seem to the be teams most rumoured.

The Blackhawks definitely do have interest in Toronto d-man Tomas Kaberle, and Toronto is listening. A package would include some of Barker, Seabrook, Versteeg, Sharp and a draft pick. I'd say two of them would do it, depending on the strength of the draft pick, but Leafs could throw in something else to bring a third piece over. These talks will likely continue, and nothing is expected on this front until February at least.

As you've all heard, Forsberg is making another attempt at a comeback. The Rangers are interested and have told the public so. Detroit, Colorado, Montreal, LA and Colorado are also rumoured to have interest.

Biron to the Sabres is gaining a lot of steam.

We're always looking for new bloggers, if you are interested please email me at

Tuesday, November 03, 2009

Rumour Mill for November 3

We'll start in Montreal, where it's very interesting that Carey Price will be starting tonight against Atlanta. Some rumours continue to swirl that one of Price or Halak are on their way out, possibly to Chicago. Rumours also suggest that Andrei Kostitsyn and Georges Laraque could both end up in the AHL. I think it may be time for the Kostitsyn's to be packaged together and dealt.

Kessel returns to the Leafs tonight, with Tlusty going back to the AHL. If things don't improve over the next five games, changes will come in Toronto. The Monster will get the start tonight, while it's likely both he and Toskala will split the games this weekend. I'm hearing Toskala will go Friday, with Monster going Saturday against Detroit.

Carolina is apparently shopping Ray Whitney, but he's got a NTC, and I don't see him getting a lot of interest from around the league. I also heard a rumour that the team may have some interest in Shanahan.

Whispers around the league have the Oilers shopping Horcoff. He's really struggled thus far, but I still think he could become one of the best centres in the league if given the right opportunity.

Lehtonen is still on Detroit's radar, but two more goalies can be added to that list: NYI's Biron and Ottawa's Elliott.

For the latest, check and our forums

Sunday, November 01, 2009

Early Season Slumps...

A few teams that were expected to have playoff seasons have started off slow, meaning some changes are going to start to happen.

I'll start in Carolina, which is rumoured to be the first team who will get shaken up. Paul Maurice may not be the target, but his job is far from safe. The Hurricanes, expected by everyone but me to the make the playoffs in 5th or 6th place, currently sit 14th in the East, and are only one point ahead of the Leafs. The Leafs also have a game in hand, just saying. Expect something to happen in Carolina tonight or tomorrow, whether it be a trade, signing or coaching change.

Speaking of Toronto, don't expect any changes just yet. The team has played much better as of late, and Kessel's Tuesday return should be enough change to keep the team happy, at least for now. One thing is for sure, Toskala has lost his starting job and will back up the Monster for the forseeable future.

Nashville, Anaheim and St. Louis all sit in the botoom three spots in the West, and all three teams are searching for ways to improve their teams. The Ducks would love to move Giguere, but thus far the market for goalies is pretty dry. The Blue Jackets are also quickly falling back to earth, and some change could come there as well.

If anyone thinks the Red Wings are content with their goaltending, they are very incorrect. The team would love to upgrade their goaltending, but it has to be affordable. Atlanta's Kari Lehtonen could be their man.

The Rangers are trying to move Chris Higgins, with the Ducks and Wild both showing early interest. The Bruins are another team interested in the young forward.

Wednesday, October 21, 2009

Injuries cause trade winds to pick up

Boston was already without Lucic, Boston had already traded Kessel, Boston was already dealing with Tim Thomas playing like a backup goalie, and now they'll have to play without their best player, Marc Savard, for 4-6 weeks. I don't expect the bruins to rush out and make another deal (they've made two in the last few days), but if things continue to go wrong for them, they will seek out some help down the middle. I read a twitter post by an "insider" who assured twitter readers that Nylander was being looked at by Boston. No way does that happen, as a) Nylander won't help and b) his salary is way too high for the Bruins to possibly even consider.

Gonchar's injury (which will keep him out for 4-6 weeks) could be huge in Pittsburgh, as remember, the Pens with in 10th place when Gonchar returned from injury last season. From what I've been told, the team will not make any trades in the short-term, and will assess how things go over the next 8-10 games.

The Ducks have re-called Justin Pogge, which means a Giguere trade COULD be coming. Toronto has been a rumoured destination for the last six months, but it would be very tricky for the team to fit him under the cap. With that said, sending Toskala to the AHL combined with Mike Van Ryn being out for the season and it's not so far fetched. The question of coarse is, what would the Ducks want for Giguere? I'm thinking not too much, as they'd love to get out from under his $6 million cap hit, which he's on the books for until after 10/11.

The Kings are shopping Frolov, as it's become clear that a change of scenery could beneficial for the young winger. Team's with early interest include Vancouver and Atlanta.

Speaking of Frolov, he's one of several players the Wings are "rumoured" to be going after. Sources tell that Ken Holland is being patient and has no intention of going out and finding a quick fix. With that said, if the team starts to struggle changes could happen.

We're still looking for team bloggers, so if you are interested please email me at

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Thursday, October 15, 2009

Rumour Mill for Oct. 15

- The Toronto Maple Leafs are looking to shake things up, and have two main area's they are focussing on.

#1 - Goaltending, and the big name I'm hearing is J.S. Giguere. The Leafs goaltending injuries could both be worse than we're hearing, and the Ducks are still very willing to move Giggy and his large contract.

#2 - A Centre, and rumour has it that Kaberle could be moved to get one. Kaberle is one of the players who is unhappy under Ron Wilson and may finally be willing to lift his no-trade.

Obviously the Leafs are short on cap space, but if Toskala is put on IR or waived (which is a big possibility at this point), that is all the space the team would need. Jason Blake isn't above being waived as well.

- Look for the Detroit Red Wings to look to make a move shortly. Their goaltending is very questionable at this point, and with no Hudler, Franzen or Hossa up front, this team is not the same offensive weapon it was a year ago. Word out of Detroit today is that Datsyuk will also miss some time with an injury.

- Minnesota's slow start isn't sitting well with management and talk is that Josh Harding could be moved in hopes of getting some more offsensive help.

- Another team to keep an eye on is the Boston Bruins, who have looked pretty awful thus far. Their closeness to the cap will limit what they can do, but changes could be coming their if things don't improve. Their defense appears to be the most likely candidate for an upgrade, as their goaltending really can't be touched.

Tuesday, October 13, 2009

Bozak, Reimer recalled by Toronto

Toskala is out with an undisclosed injury. Reimer will back up Macdonald while Bozak will play tonight. Stahlberg will also return to the lineup.

I've heard Exelby will also be in the lineup. No news on who he, Bozak and Stahlberg will replace in the lineup.

I can tell you this: if Toronto fails to win tonight, Burke has one game in twelve days, and serious changes could be made. Burke understands that the Leafs do not have their top pick in next year's draft, and thus a losing season is unacceptable. I'm not sure how this can be turned around, but Burke will need to find a way.

In other NHL news, how about that Calgary/Chicago game last night? Nothing short of epic. The Flames are back in action tonight against the red-hot Blue Jackets.

Marion Gaborik is really leading the Rangers, and if this guy can stay healthy, just about everyone will be wrong with their pre-season predictions. Just about everyone(including us) had the Rangers missing the playoffs, but with the way they are playing, the Eastern Conference could easily be theres.

How long before teams like Colorado, LA, Phoenix and Tampa Bay fall back down to Earth? Not long for teams like Colorado and Phoenix, but I think LA and Tampa Bay could be the real deal.

Where are all the rumours? It's been slow, but expect the first (and hopefully start of a regular) rumour blog tomorrow or Thursday.

So happy for hockey to be back! Make sure to check out our team bloggers at If you are interested in writing for us, please email me at

Sunday, October 04, 2009

Weekend Thoughts

I love the NHL because anyone can happen, anyone can win, and anyone can have a big night.

Who would have thought that Detroit would be 0-2 to start the season after a two-game series with the Blues? Who would have thought that Colorado, who just about everyone had picking Taylor Hall in next year's draft, would start the season 2-0 and Craig Anderson would be the league's best goalie after two games? Vancouver and Carolina are 0-2 on the season, with the of the league's best goalies struggling early after both of them signed monster contract extensions in the off-season. Even Montreal starting the season 2-0 is a little surprising, but both of those wins can be directly credited to Carey Price.

Things that are not surprising anyone? Pittsburgh, Washington, and Philly are all 2-0 and have looked great getting there. In the west, Calgary has looked just as good as we knew they would, with that defense being the most scary in the NHL. Nobody is surprised that Ovechkin leads the league in points with six, he's on pace for a MONSTER year. Speaking of Monster's, nobody should be surprised that at this point, it appears Jonas "The Monster" Gustavsson will be replacing Toskala already.

My bad thought of the day? Whose idea was it to give us 15 great games yesterday, and give us nothing today? I know by midnight tonight I will be going through some serious hockey withdrawel.

Don't forget you can check for up-to-date standings and statistics, as well as who is winning the rookie race (James Van Riemsdyk is the early leader).

We are still looking for team bloggers so if you want to write about your favourite team for please email me at

Have a great rest of your weekend, hockey is back tomorrow!

Saturday, October 03, 2009

Hockey's Back!

The season is three days old and I couldn't be happier. It's been great being able to watch several games since Thursday, and if you've been missing out on great action, today is the day to catch up. 15 games on today, including Florida and Chicago, which is on right now. Chicago leads 2-0 thanks to goals by Brian Campbell and Patrick Kane, who has four points already in just one and a half games. Apparently the taxi cab incident is doing nothing to his game.

Yesterday's announcement about Shanahan does not sit well with the Devils, who are entering this season without Gionta or Madden, two huge losses for the team. Pair that with Brodeur being another year older, and star-backup Clemmenson gone, and there are major question marks in New Jersey. The team is in the market for a winger and I'm hearing they could get one sooner than you'd think. The Devils kick off their 2009/2010 season tonight against early-season Stanley Cup favourite Philadelphia. How good did Ray Emery look in game one?

Game of the night? Could be St. Louis and Detroit who put on a hell of a show last night. I think St. Louis will make the playoffs this year and will put up a much better season than last year. A healthy Johnson and Kariya make this team A LOT better instantly.

Another great game today should be Carolina and Boston. Both teams started the season off with a loss and will be looking to rebound and get a tick in the win column. I know a lot of people disliked my prediction of Carolina badly missing the playoffs, but really, without Cam Ward, where would this team be?

Andrei Markov, as we told you yesterday, is out up to four months after surgery to repair a torn tendon. This is HUGE for the Habs and their playoff chances are going to be directly impacted by this. The team has shown interest in semi-retired d-man Patrice Brisbois, but in no way is he a replacement for Markov, who was Montreal's best player last season.

The Leaf being shopped the most? Lee Stempniak. Also, looks like Jeff Finger will be in for Toronto tonight, with Ian White likely watching for the press box. I'm sure that will be confirmed in our forums in the next few hours so check back there.

Get in front of your television and watch some hockey, there are going to be some dandy games taking place today.

If you are interested in blogging for us, please send me an email to We've already had some great people sign up, and we'd love to add you to the team. This is going to be a great year, so get involved!

Friday, October 02, 2009

Team Blogger Search

With the season beginning, I am looking for 30 people to represent the 30 teams of the NHL. This was really big for us during the end of last season, but died during the off-season. If you blogged for us last season, you have first crack at your spot. Please send me an email at with a sample of writing and which team you'd like to write for. First-come, first-serve. You will have free reign to post your blogs on

Thursday, October 01, 2009

2009/2010 Predictions

So here is what I think the standings will look like following the 2009/2010 season. Please leave feedback in our forums!


1. Philadelphia Flyers
2. Boston Bruins
3. Washington Capitals
4. Pittsburgh Penguins
5. New Jersey Devils
6. Toronto Maple Leafs
7. Montreal Canadiens
8. Tampa Bay Lightning
9. New York Rangers
10. Ottawa Senators
11. Carolina Hurricanes
12. Buffalo Sabres
13. Atlanta Thrashers
14. Florida Panthers
15. New York Islanders


1. San Jose Sharks
2. Calgary Flames
3. Chicago Blackhawks
4. Detroit Red Wings
5. Vancouver Canucks
6. Edmonton Oilers
7. St. Louis Blues
8. Anaheim Ducks
9. Minnesota Wild
10. LA Kings
11. Columbus Blue Jackets
12. Dallas Stars
13. Phoenix Coyotes
14. Nashville Predators
15. Colorado Avalanche

Thoughts? Head to the forums under the "blogs" forum for your feedback!

Tuesday, September 29, 2009

Schremp an Islander

The New York Islanders have claimed forward Rob Schremp off waivers from the Edmonton Oilers. I am really happy about this move, as no player needed a change of scenery more than this kid, as I really feel he's NHL ready. Put this kid with JT and he'll score 40-50 points this year.

Christoph Schubert is still in the waiver process, I expect someone to claim him. You can never have enough defensemen. Speaking of d-men, how about Strahlman getting traded again? Poor kid has been on three teams in the last month.

Leaf fans, looks like you'll get to see Tyler Bozak make his NHL debut this week. Sources tell that one or both of Orr and Mayers will miss the first few games of the season, meaning there will be room for both Bozak and Stralberg on the opening night roster.

Check tomorrow night as our season preview and predictions blog will be posted sometime tomorrow!

Thursday, September 24, 2009

Gretzky Steps Down

Wayne Gretzky has stepped down as the head coach of the Phoenix Coyotes. Check for all the latest

Tuesday, September 22, 2009

Post-Vegas Rumours

So I have returned from my beautifully relaxing trip to Las Vegas, and return to provide you all with the latest rumours.

Let's start in Toronto, where I am hearing a package of Stempniak and one of White/Van Ryn could be on the move for a 2nd Round Pick (2010 or 2011, depending on what the team has available). One team I've heard interested in this sort of package from the Leafs is Nashville.

Both Montreal and Ottawa continue to look for a little bit more help on the blueline. While the Scott Hannan rumours you are hearing appear to be false, I can tell you that both teams do have interest in LA's Jack Johnson.

Speaking of young d-men who could be on the move, one source told me that Chicago's Duncan Keith could be had for the right price, which Chicago is setting at a first round pick + or a couple of quality prospects. Chicago understands their cap situation and is looking to improve it.

Another team looking to make one final move is the New York Rangers, who many are predicting to finish out of the playoffs. This team would love to add an established player down the middle, and Nathan Horton is a name floating around a lot. The Rangers would love to dump one of their overpriced d-men but that isn't going so well.

You don't hear too much about the Carolina Hurricanes, but you are going to start. The Hurricanes have a ton of key UFA's after season's end, including Walker, Cullin, Whitney, Corvo, Ward and Wallin. Add to that, Cam Ward is an RFA following this season. Expect big changes to come in Carolina if this team gets off to a slow start.

Mats Sundin remains a big question mark, and with Vancouver up against the cap it looks like he's played his final game as a Canuck. The Rangers are always an option, while the Leafs could finally give Sundin the winger he deserves in Kessel. I'm not saying it's going to happen, but never say never. I've always believed Sundin could finish his career in Toronto, and this would be the season to do it.

If you want in the yahoo pool, the draft is tomorrow night at 10 pm. Send me an email at if interested.

And yes, my season predictions are coming, I am just waiting a few more days to see what other dominoes will fall before the puck drops on the 2009/2010 season.

Tuesday, September 15, 2009

Pre-Season Power Rankings

The following was written by staff writer Brandon Allin. Look for my regular season predictions late next week. Enjoy!!


With the 2009-2010 National Hockey League season almost upon us, takes a look at the league's thirty clubs in the form of our annual power rankings. From top to bottom, and from legitimate contenders to bottom-feeders, here is a look at what's in

1. San Jose Sharks
The San Jose Sharks are a team built to contend, but whether or not they're ready to compete beyond the conclusion of the regular season remains to be seen. While the Sharks lost a bit of depth with the likes of Jonathan Cheechoo, Milan Michalek, and Christian Ehrhoff moving on, the addition of sniper Dany Heatley bolsters an already impressive group of talented forwards. Behind Heatley and company, San Jose boast a respectable defense, and arguably the league's best European goaltender, Evgeni Nabokov. With that said, while the Sharks have earned the top spot for now, a plethora of eager clubs are hot on their heels.

2. Philadelphia Flyers
The Broad Street Bullies are back, and barring any repeat parades to the sin bin, Eastern Conference opponents will be hard pressed to unseat the Flyers from atop the standings this season. The addition of Chris Pronger solidifies a capable defense, and a healthy Daniel Briere is bound to be the cherry on top of an already plentiful group of gifted forwards. With strong campaigns from captain Mike Richards, and the electrifying duo of Jeff Carter and Simon Gagne, the Flyers will have no trouble finding the back of the net yet again this season. However, with disgruntled goaltender Ray Emery back between the pipes after a successful stint in Russia, anything is possible.

3. Boston Bruins
Fresh off their most successful campaign in years, expect no shortage of victories from the Bruins this season. Despite the potential loss of blooming star of Phil Kessel looming in Beantown, the Bruins young core is steadily progressing in all the right ways. In addition to veterans Marc Savard, Zdeno Chara, Marc Recchi, and goaltender Tim Thomas, look for strong crusades from youngsters David Krejci, Blake Wheeler, and the explosive Milan Lucic. With another successful season from reigning Vezina Trophy winner Tim Thomas, expect the Bruins to make another substantial run at the hardware this year. Is a deeper playoff run in the cards for the Bruins? We'll have to wait and see.

4. Detroit Red Wings
There's no denying that things looked a bit grim in Hockeytown following the eventual losses of Marian Hossa, Jiri Hudler, Mikael Samuelsson, Ty Conklin, and Tomas Kopecky, but the Red Wings have done a respectable job of plugging the holes with reliable depth forwards. Former Red Wings Todd Bertuzzi and Jason Williams are back for another go, while the Wings will look for Ville Leino, Patrick Eaves, and speedster Darren Helm to tap their potential. The only real question mark for Detroit is in goal, with veteran Chris Osgood another year older, and inexperienced prospect Jimmy Howard bound to carry part of the load. If Osgood performs the way he is capable of doing so, look for the Red Wings to secure yet another comfortable playoff birth.

5. Chicago Blackhawks
Hockey is alive and well in Chicago. With a young, talented core, coach Joel Quenneville will look to take the Hawks to the next level. The addition of superstar Marian Hossa provides the Hawks' already potent offense with a little more bite, and forwards John Madden and Tomas Kopecky will plug the holes in the bottom six. With a stronger season from quarterback Brian Campbell, and further development from duo Duncan Keith and Brent Seabrook, don't be surprised to see Chicago give the powerful Red Wings a run for their money in the Central Division. With that said, the loss of veteran goaltender Nikolai Khabibulin still stings, and it remains to be seen if former backup Cristobal Huet can carry the young Blackhawks as deep into the post-season as his predecessor.

6. Washington Capitals
With reigning Hart Trophy winner Alexander Ovechkin running the show in Washington, the only way left for the Capitals to go is up. With no end in sight for Ovechkin's goal-scoring prowess, the Capitals will rely on strong campaigns from supporting cast Nicklas Backstrom, Alexander Semin, and newly-acquired forward Mike Knuble. Furthermore, look for rising star Simeon Varlamov to steal the number one spot in net over a shaky Jose Theodore. With a re-tooled offense, a capable defense, and any luck between the pipes, the Capitals have certainly earned themselves a one-way to ticket to another playoff berth. Is this the year Ovechkin brings home Lord Stanley? Your guess is as good as mine.

7. Pittsburgh Penguins
You might be asking yourself how the defending Stanley Cup Champions have failed to crack our top five, but the answer is quite clear. The young and powerful Penguins are locked in a feisty Atlantic Division, one that is certain to offer even tighter competition this season with the re-tooled Flyers and Rangers hot on their tails. Still, have no fear, coach Dan Bylsma's lively Penguins squad will secure another post-season berth, and thus, another shot at reclaiming the throne. Barring any major injuries to the likes of explosive duo Sidney Crosby and Evgeni Malkin, and steady goaltender Marc Andre Fleury, the hungry Penguins will look to succeed where Detroit could not.

8. Calgary Flames
The fiery Flames were a steady squad last season, and it appears a change is far from in the cards. While the Flames have regressed slightly up front with the loss of sniper of Mike Cammalleri, the addition of puck-moving defenseman Jay Bouwmeester on the back end is bound to soften the blow. With that said, the Flames will rely heavily on potent seasons from Jarome Iginla, Dion Phaneuf, Rene Bourque, Curtis Glencross, and talented freshman Mikael Backlund. If all goes as planned, the Flames will sit atop the Northwest Division when all is said and done, but any bumps along the road may put a blemish on what could be a tenacious endeavor.

9. Anaheim Ducks
It's no secret that the losses of top-tier defenseman Chris Pronger and steady support blue-liner Francois Beauchimen have crippled the league's best defense, but not in a way the Ducks will be unable to recover from. In fact, Anaheim appear in a very good position going forward. Talented forwards Ryan Getzlaf, Corey Perry, and young sniper Bobby Ryan will flourish with another year of experience under their belts, and defensemen Scott Niedermayer and Ryan Whitney are no slouches, either. In goal, the Ducks are fortunate to have two capable netminders. Keep an eye out for goaltenders Jean-Sebastien Giguere and Jonas Hiller battling for position all season long.

10. New Jersey Devils
This time last year, the Devils would have nearly cracked our top five. This year, they barely made the top ten. With the loss of forwards Brian Gionta and John Madden, and Patrik Elias, Jamie Langenbrunner, and Martin Brodeur all another year older, the Devils will rely on Zach Parise more than ever. Fresh off another strong effort, Parise and the Devils will yet again look to trap Eastern Conference opponents, and worm their way into the post-season. Barring an injury to Brodeur in goal, look for New Jersey to make another run at Lord Stanley, but without any worthwhile replacements for Gionta and Madden lured in to soften the blow, a trip beyond the quarterfinal may be out of reach.

11. Vancouver Canucks
As always, the Canucks will once again be a difficult team to predict. With superstar Roberto Luongo between the pipes, the sky is the limit for Vancouver, but a major injury to the masked captain, or a dry spell for Henrik and Daniel Sedin, could spell the end for what has the potential to be a promising season. Beyond that, the Canucks will look for more production from handcuffed winger Steve Bernier, the aging Pavol Demitra, and assistant captain Ryan Kesler. Will the additions of dependable winger Mikael Samuelsson and top prospect Cody Hodgson be enough to Vancouver into the playoffs? While the answer to that remains to be seen, a hearty defense and a top flight goaltender should effectively mask any offensive struggles the Canucks may experience this season.

12. St. Louis Blues
Despite their surprise appearance in the playoffs last year, the Blues still have a lot to prove. The Blues fiery offense, led by Brad Boyes, Andy McDonald, Paul Kariya, and youngsters David Backes and T.J. Oshie will be firing on all cylinders, while a dependable defense corps will be bolstered by the return of injured blueliner Erik Johnson. The only question marks surrounding the Blues remain the same; goaltending and experience. Will Chris Mason and newly-acquired backup Ty Conklin be enough to slip into the post-season, and will the Blues young core be able to compete again in a tough Western Conference? With any luck, the St. Louis Blues will be legitimate contenders by the season's halfway point.

13. New York Rangers
The New York Rangers seem stuck in a neverending cycle. First, they acquire big name free agents with high price tags. Second, they underachieve. Third, they rinse and repeat. Will this be the year the Blueshirts buck the trend? It all boils down to Marian Gaborik. When healthy, Gaborik is among the league's best. Should Marian Gaborik remain in good health, look for the re-tooled Rangers to snap at the Penguins' and Flyers' heals in the Atlantic Divison all season long. With that said, the Rangers will most certainly require more production from the likes of the feisty Brandon Dubinsky and often-ridiculed defenseman Wade Redden. If all goes as planned, the Rangers could very well impress, but unfortunately, that's a big if.

14. Montreal Canadiens
Size is the main concern surrounding the Canadiens this year, but Habs fans have no need to worry. The additions of Mike Cammalleri, Scott Gomez, and Brian Gionta up front will spark a somewhat dry offense, while Jaroslav Spacek and Hall Gill will fit nicely amongst the squad's respectable defense. The only real cause for concern in Montreal is in goal, but should Carey Price falter, backup Jaroslav Halak has shown he can carry the load. The new-look Canadiens, led by former Panthers bench-boss Jacques Martin, will look to improve upon an early exit from last year's playoffs. The question is, will the amount of pieces that must fall into place in Montreal be too much to ask for? You can't color me concerned, but others seem less content.

15. Carolina Hurricanes
What kind of showing does Carolina need to put forth to command a little respect? The often-overlooked Hurricanes, led by the determined Eric Staal and aging captain Rod Brind'Amour, will once again be the dark horse for a deep playoff run this season. With that said, Carolina fans shouldn't hold their breath for another visit to the Conference Final. With no major improvements made to a presentable roster, the Hurricanes may experience hardships the season in a renovated Eastern Conference. While goaltender Cam Ward will likely carry the Hurricanes to another playoff berth, anything more may be out of reach.

16. Columbus Blue Jackets
For once, the Columbus Blue Jackets have put together a respectable team, but with a top-flight sniper like Rick Nash, and a sensational rookie netminder in Steve Mason, what else could you really expect? This season, the Blue Jackets will attempt to use the experience gained in their first playoff berth in franchise history to make another run beyond the regular season. In order to do just that, the Blue Jackets will need help from a trio of youngsters, wingers Nikita Filatov and Jakub Voracek, and center Derick Brassard. Meanwhile, another outstanding season from Steve Mason will be the key to the team's success. There's no denying that Ken Hitchcock and company have put together a formidable squad, but they may not be ready to really compete quite yet. With that said, the Blue Jackets have the potential to surprise.

17. Toronto Maple Leafs
Perhaps the most interesting team to watch, and therefore the hardest to place, the Toronto Maple Leafs will ice a heavily remodeled lineup come October. While the back end has certainly been solidified with the arrivals of newcomers Francois Beauchemin and hard-hitting Mike Komisarek, the Maple Leafs offense will undoubtedly see its struggles. To ensure a return to the playoffs, the Leafs will require more production from youngsters Nikolai Kulemin, Jiri Tlusty, and undrafted free agent signees Tyler Bozak and goaltender Jonas Gustavsson, while depending on strong campaigns from Matt Stajan, Niklas Hagman, Mikhail Grabovski, Jason Blake, and Alexei Ponikarovsky. While it's much more likely the Leafs will struggle than flourish, the rumoured addition of Boston sniper Phil Kessel could elevate Ron Wilson's squad to the post-season plateau.

18. Ottawa Senators
Depth is exactly what the Senators lack up front, and depth is what they're out to get. Ottawa will look to newly-acquired Alexei Kovalev, Jonathan Cheechoo, and Milan Michalek to fill the void left by disgruntled winger Dany Heatley. In goal, the Senators will rely heavily on a fresh start from netminder Pascal Leclaire, who sat the better part of last season due to an ankle injury. While Kovalev, and returning forwards Jason Spezza and Daniel Alfredsson, will have no trouble hitting the scoresheet, all kind of questions surround the Senators lack of secondary scoring. If the new faces mesh well, Ottawa could surprise, but I'm more inclined to believe they'll stumble. Unfortunately for the Senators, there's no room for a mediocre team in the rat-race that is the Eastern Conference.

19. Dallas Stars
If a return to form is in the cards for any team this seaosn, it will be the Stars. For Dallas to compete amongst the West's elite, they will need the now-healthy Brendan Morrow to perform at the torrid pace they saw prior to his injury last season, and a much stronger outing from goaltender Marty Turco. Unfortunately for the Stars, Turco seems to caught in a gradual downward spiral, and without a capable backup to carry the load should Turco falter, Dallas may be in trouble. With that said, the Stars boast an impressive young core including Loui Eriksson, James Neal, and Matt Niskanen, to compliment the likes of Morrow, Mike Modano, Brad Richards, and Stephane Robidas. The Stars will have their chances, but the going will be tough.

20. Buffalo Sabres
Just three years ago, the Sabres sat comfortably atop the Eastern Conference with no place left to for up. Since that time, the almighty Sabres have fallen, and quite simply, fallen hard. After failing to reach the post-season in each of their last two seasons, the Sabres will look to return to the place they once called home. The question now is, will Buffalo's stand-still approach this offseason be enough to claw their way in? With a healthy Ryan Miller and Tim Connolly on board, the potential is there, but like Marian Gaborik in New York, I wouldn't hold my breath. Still, the Sabres will ice a competitive bunch up front, including sniper Thomas Vanek, Jason Pominville, and Derek Roy so look for Buffalo to at least match the tenth place seed they earned last season.

21. Edmonton Oilers
While there's no denying that an endowed Dany Heatley certainly would have helped, with the seasoned Pat Quinn behind the bench, the Oilers will aim to improve in any way they can. The addition of veteran goaltender Nikolai Khabibulin between the posts will certainly help, but Edmonton will need nearly double the production from youngsters Sam Gagner and Andrew Cogliano to land anywhere near the playoffs in a tight Western Conference. The Oilers certianly have the tools, it's learning how to use them that has proved this difficult thus far, and unfortunately for their fans, it looks as if the growing pains will continue for at least another year. Fortunately for the Edmonton faithful, the future looks bright, and with any luck, Quinn will be able to shape his squad into a bonafide competitor.

22. Minnesota Wild
Finally rid of the oft-injured Marian Gaborik, the Minnesota Wild will look to recapture the magic they lost last season. To fill the void left by Gaborik, the club recruited former Blackhawks injury bug Martin Havlat. Fortunately for the Wild, Havlat remained healthy all of last season before being knocked silly in the post-season. Will Havlat be enough to elevate the Wild to the next level? To be blunt, no. Don't get me wrong, with Vezina candidate Niklas Backstrom in goal, and former coach Jacques Lemaire's defense-first philosophy out the window, the Wild could surprise. In the meantime, look for continued development from star forward Mikko Koivu and a return to form from defenseman Brent Burns.

23. Nashville Predators
The Predators are a tricky bunch. While Nashville never ice an overly-powerful squad, coach Barry Trotz and company always find a way to keep the team near the playoff picture, assuming they don't claw their way in. With that said, Nashville will once again find themselves on the outside looking in this year. The return of a healthy Steve Sullivan for an entire campaign will certainly help, but beyond captain Jason Arnott and rising stars Shea Weber and goaltender Pekka Rinne, the Predators don't boast enough top-end talent to really compete this season. While the playoffs may be out of reach for the Predators, the team will remain competitive until the final puck drop, a mentatily always evident with Trotz on board.

24. Tampa Bay Lightning
Fortunately for the Lightning, no matter what happens this year, nothing could be worse than the embarassing debacle that was last season. Unfortunately for Tampa, on paper, not much has changed. Plug veteran Mattias Ohlund and highly-touted defensive prospect Victor Hedman into the back end, and you have a much stronger blue line, but up front, the Lightning will see their struggles, and barring any miracles, the Lightning will miss the playoffs yet again. Still, the potential is there. With a return to form by star forward Vincent Lecavlier, another steady season from the speedy Martin St. Louis, and the continued development of former first overall pick Steven Stamkos all but certain, the Lightning have the ability to soar under the radar. On the other hand, much like last year, they also have the ability to crash and burn. Time will tell.

25. Los Angeles Kings
With arguably the deepest core of top-end prospects in the leauge, the future no longer looks grim for the Los Angeles Kings. With that said, the youngsters aren't quit there yet. Sure, much like the Lightning, the Kings have the potential to surprise, it's much more likely that another year of seasoning is exactly what the doctor ordered. In the meantime, the continued development of defensemen Drew Doughty and Jack Johnson will be a pleasure to watch. Up front, the Kings will look to forwards Anze Kopitar, Alexander Frolov, and newly-acquired veteran Ryan Smyth to hit the back of the net. In goal, the Kings are hoping for positive strides by young netminders Jonathan Quick and Erik Ersberg.

26. Florida Panthers
You've got to feel for the Florida Panthers. Just when things are looking up, they lose prized defenseman Jay Bouwmeester to free agency, and thus right back where they started, as a bottom-feeder in the Eastern Conference. While the likes of forwards Nathan Horton, David Booth, and Stephen Weiss are certainly stable building blocks moving forwards, the Panthers seem stuck in an endless moonwalk backwards. Still, with a reliable Tomas Vokoun in goal, and an able-bodied defensive core, Florida will display flashes of brilliance, but when all is said and done, the momentary glimpses of competitive hockey will be far from enough to mask the team's almost certain struggles.

27. Atlanta Thrashers
Is this the year Atlanta bucks the seemingly endless trend of forgettable seasons? No, but fortunately for the young Thrashers, better days are on the horizon. While this certainly won't be a season to write home about, the Thrashers have established a desirable young core, and should general manager Don Waddell manage to retain Russian sniper Ilya Kovalchuk beyond this season, I think it's safe to say the future is bright. In the meantime, keep an eye out for newcomers Nik Antropov and Pavel Kubina, the emergance of highly-touted draft pick Evander Kane, and continued progression from youngsters Bryan Little and Tobias Enstrom.

28. New York Islanders
Much like the Thrashers, the Islanders are finally beginning to glimpse the light at the end of a very long, and very dark tunnel. With top prospect John Tavares in the mix, Long Island seem to have finally found the franchise player they've been longing for. Now it's up to Tavares to tap his potential, and show the Islanders faithful he can compete at the highest level. However, despite what many predict will be an explosive rookie campaign from the junior star, not even Tavares can turn the train wreck that was the New York Islanders around in just one season. Fortunately, Tavares' young supporting cast will lighten the load on his shoulders, with further development from Josh Bailey and Kyle Okposo on the horizon. Don't expect to see the Islanders flatline out of the gate, but in the long run, their season is over before it began.

29. Phoenix Coyotes
What began as a season oozing with potential for the Coyotes last year ended up a disaster, and unfortunately, the tide won't change this season. Phoenix, much the rest of the league's bottom-feeders are slowly developing a bright, young core, but a handful of inexperienced prospects can only offer a club so much. Shane Doan's production will remain steady, Peter Mueller will take a step forward, and Danish winger Mikkel Boedker will continue to progress, but beyond that, there isn't much to be excited about in Phoenix this season. With that said, at the very least, the club can count on yet another high draft pick.

30. Colorado Avalanche
What happens when you take the worst team in the Western Conference last season and remove grizzled veterans Joe Sakic and Ryan Smyth from their lineup? You get the worst team in the National Hockey League. While that may sound harsh, the reality remains that this season won't be pretty for the Avalanche. On the plus side, keep a watchful eye out for solid numbers from the likes of forwards Paul Statsny, Milan Hejduk, Wojtek Wolski, and the emergence of former Brampton Battalion forward Matt Duchene. True, Colorado fans have a lot to be excited about with Duchene set to step into the big leagues, but beyond that, there's not much else. Avalanche fans, brace yourself for the eyesore en route.


Friday, September 11, 2009

My remaining offseason predictions

1. Phil Kessel will be a Maple Leaf. Burke wants him and Kessel wants to wear the blue and white. Burke is trying his hardest to acquire the skilled winger via trade, but if the Bruins decide to deal him elsewhere, the Leafs will immediately put an offer sheet in. This is too good of a fit for the Leafs to miss out on.

2. Heatley will be traded before the season starts. He's too big of a distration to be kept around the team, and he simply doesnt want to be there. I still think he'll end up with the Sharks, but at this point a team like the Rangers or Blues could always jump in.

3. Balsillie will win the Coyotoes. I don't know if the team will go to Hamilton, but I just can't see Balsillie losing this battle. His offer is way better than the NHLs, and at this point I see big Jim willing to let the team play one last year in Phoenix to sort things out.

So ESPN was totally wrong about the Heatley deal, as I had a feeling they were. Usually when information comes out, I post it as my own information because I have confirmed it with several sources. Last night, ESPN was the only source spewing this info, which is why I called the deal a report, and cited ESPN as the source. It was funny to see on twitter all the "insiders" and their posts such as "five of my sources confirm the ESPN stories" and "Heatley deal done as per my best source". I'll be removing a lot of these from my twitter list today, as they're credibility is gone. Twitter is a great tool for Hockey Bloggers, but to those who fit in that category, beware: it's easy to get caught making stuff up.

For all the latest check out as well as our twitter account and our forums.

Thursday, September 10, 2009

Report: Heatley A Shark

According to ESPN, the Sens have traded Heatley in a three team deal. Details

to San Jose: Dany Heatley
to LA Kings: Patrick Marleau
To Ottawa: Alexander Frolov, Jarret Stoll

stay tuned to the forums for all the latest

Tuesday, September 08, 2009

Hockeyleaks PPFL 2009/2010 Details!

Here are the Hockeyleaks Power Play Fantasy League 09/10

Power Play Fantasy League 2009 - 2010 Details

This will be the fifth season of our PPFL. Bob Adamski won the first two pools, I won in 07/08 while Blueleafss, competiting in his fourth year of the pool took home the prize last year. Do you have what it takes to take the title?

Rules: You will pick six forwards and four defenseman. You get one injury replacement during the season. Extra replacements will then be $5 per replacement.

Cost: $5 per team. You may have as many teams as you want.

Promotions: 1) 5 Teams for $20.

2) If Payment is recieved by Sept. 20, you will get one additional team free. So two teams for $5, three teams for $10, 6 teams for $20, etc.

Sending Pick Information: Please email your list of 10 players to Please do not email your free team until we have confirmed to have received your payment. We will contact you asking for your free team.

Payment Info: Paypal: Send paypal payment to

Cheque / Money Order: Please send cheque / money order to:

Corey Johnson
47 Woodsview Ave,
Toronto, Ontario

Address Cheque to Corey Johnson, not

Please include your email address with your cheque / money order so we can email you and collect your free team.

Prizing: Winner of the pool will receive total money collected. Second place will get all the money collected in extra replacements, to a maximum of 40% of the winning prize. If nobody purchases extra replacements, then second place will recieve $10.

--------------------------------------------------------------- Yahoo Pool

Same setting as last year, if you are interested in being invited, please email me at and request that you be invited to the yahoo league

Sunday, September 06, 2009

Offseason ticking down...

25 or so days and the 2009/2010 season will be upon us. Today, several rookie tournaments kick off which will give teams a look at the future of their franchises. I couldn't be happier that training camp is about kick off, as its been a long offseason and with all off-season changes that have taken place league-wide, everyone should be intrigued by what is to come over the next year.

The big news of yesterday was the Leafs spending a 2nd round pick in 2011 and a 3rd rounder in 2010 to re-acquire their own 2010 2nd round pick (which was originally traded to Montreal for Grabovski).

Speculation is that the Leafs are gearing up for an offer sheet on Kessel, but don't get too ahead of yourself. This move was done by Burke to put pressure on the Bruins to make a deal. While a 1st, 2nd and 3rd round pick would be great for the Bruins, losing Kessel for no immediate return is something they are trying to avoid. The Bruins are expected to compete for the Eastern title this year, and losing Kessel would be a huge obstacle for the team to overcome. The Leafs would love to work out a trade for Kessel, but failing that, an offer sheet isn't out of the question.

The other two big RFAs, Buffalo's Stafford and NYR's Dubinsky, remain unsigned as we head into training camp. Both of these players are expected to be large parts of their team this season, and both teams are hopeful that these players will be in their opening night lineup. However, as with Kessel, the closer we get to the puck dropping, the more tempted teams who lost out on UFA's are to drop an offer sheet.

The Zherdev question remains; Where will he play 09-10? The earlier reports of him going to the KHL were a little premature, and the NHL is still a possibility. The Thrashers are the team to watch, as they believe Zherdev would be a great help in getting Kovalchuk to sign long term. Kovalchuk is slated to become UFA #1 on July 1, 2010.

Luongo's 12 year deal, despite the similar terms, sits with me a million times better than DiPietro's 15 year deal. Sadly, their salaries are not that far off...

Mats Sundin, remember when we were told you'd make a decision in the next week? That was two and a half weeks ago. At least he's managed to stay out of the spot light for the majority of the Summer. I see him going to Vancouver or NYR, though I still believe a Toronto return is never out of the question.

Speaking of Toronto, still interested to see how the Jason Allison experiment 2.0 goes. Yes, he was slow, but his comeback wasn't all bad; he was nearly a point-a-game player. Other players on tryouts to watch:

Dan Cloutier in Detroit: Yes he's bad, but Howard and Osgood (another year older) don't exactly scream confidence. Still, Cloutier is a long shot to make a return to the NHL.

Mark Bell in Philly: I think he has a shot to crack this roster, he's got good size and can play the Flyers' game.

Dan Fritche in Atlanta: This guy still has potential, and its not like Atlanta has a whole lot else going for them at this point.

In final free agent news, Petr Sykora continues to talk to several teams, including the Minnesota Wild. Denis Seidenberg remains available, and I've heard the Canucks, Habs and Sharks have shown some interest in him. Mike Comrie may be the best player left on the market, and the Sens and Oilers are the two teams to watch.

Thats all for now, stay tuned to in the next few days for more training camp news, as well as news on the FIFTH annual Hockeyleaks Power Play Fantasy League.

Monday, August 24, 2009

Five teams to shake your head at

First of all, sorry for the lack of updates. Here are two reasons why I havent been updating as much as I usually do.

a) Work has been crazy for me the last two months, but things should finally slow down starting next week, so thats good news for all of us.

b) there really isn't much going on in the rumour mill. I go on twitter everyday and see "wannabe" insiders spewing rumour garbage everywhere. Unfortunatly, as good as twitter can be, it has been taken over by people with no insight at all and thus we are being spammed with false rumours. I advise you to stick to sites that have been around for longer than just this summer, as they've been around this long for a reason. Spectors, The Fourth Period, Kukla's, ourselves and even Eklund (you cant deny that every once in awhile he nails something nobody else was talking about) are the sites I recommend, as they've been around for years (we're in our fifth year) and they have more cred than most of these "new" websites.

So on to the blog, which is about the five teams that I really think took a step backwards this offseason. Whether they let big UFA's walk without replacing them, or whether they made moves that just didnt make sense, here are the five teams that I believe simply are not as good as they were four months ago.

Anaheim, New Jersey, Florida,Buffalo, Washington

5) Washington Capitals: While they still have a great shot at winning their division (as they play in the weakest of them all), I feel the Caps have taken a minor step back this offseason. This team has made no real improvements since last season, while they lost two of their biggest leaders in Kozlov and Federov. Yes, Mike Green and Alexander Ovechkin are two of the best players in their position in the league, but Washington's supporting cast is extremely lacking. In net, while Varlamov had a great post-season, the kid has played less than 10 regular season games in his career. If he faulters, Theodore surely isn't the goalie to carry this team should the offense or defense take extended time off. One injury to Green or Ovechkin and this team could be in trouble.

4) Buffalo Sabres: A few years ago, this team was in the top five in the league, with stars like Briere and Drury, and while post those players have taken a step back since leaving Buffalo, the Sabres have faltered just as bad. The team has lost Afiniganov and Moore, while Drew Stafford is still an un-signed RFA. On defense, the team lost their most experienced defender in Teppo and replaced him with hit-or-miss defenseman Steve Montadore. Ryan Miller is going to have to play like a possessed man for the Sabres to have any chance at the playoffs, but in my opinion, it's going to be a long season for Sabres fans.

3) New Jersey: A quick playoff exit for the Devils meant the team was bound to hire another coach, and they did. With that said, I don't believe a new coach will solve the decline that is the New Jersey Devils. Last year, Scott Clemenson led this team into the playoffs with his amazing play while Brodeur was injured. This year, if Brodeur should get injured or falter (both seem likely), the task will be up to Yann Danis, not someone who is capable of carrying a team or really evening keeping one in the game. While the team has one of the most underrated D in the game, they still are not that great. Up front, the team's offense remains generally the same, though you have to assume the loss of Gionta will sting a little. Every year I pick the Devils to miss the playoffs, and this finally may be the year I am right.

2) Florida Panthers: At last year's trade deadline, the team had the opportunity to trade Bouwmeester for a package that would set the team up for future success. Instead, they decided to keep him for a playoff run that failed miserably. Now with Bouwmeester gone, the Panthers seem a sure bet to finish near the bottom of the league. The club also lost Craig Anderson, who was by far the best goalie the Panthers had last season. These two big losses, and no real replacements, mean the Panthers are 100% going to miss the playoffs and are likely draft-lottery bound.

1) Anaheim Ducks: This is a team that faught all season long to make the playoffs, and it appears they will be even in more of a fight to do so this season. At the beginning of last season, I called Anaheim's defense the league's best. This season, it's near the bottom. Without a bounce-back season by Giguere, or another breakout run by Hiller, I believe this team will find themselves in the bottom seven in the West. Pronger and Beauchemin are huge subtractions for this team, and while a full season of Ryan Whitney will help, he's not the answer, nor is Sbisa. Up front, the additions of Lupul and Koivu will help, but it's clear that both men's best seasons are behind them. Rob Niedermayer also doesn't appear to be back, which will hurt the team's third-line depth. The Ducks best years are behind them and it may be time for the team to take a step back and evaluate where they are.

Drop me an email at with your thoughts on my list, and feel free to provide me with your own.

Thursday, August 13, 2009

And The Winner Is...

The majority of the offseason is complete and the NHL landscape has changed a lot since we last saw on-ice action in June. A lot of players have changed teams, rookies will enter the league and several familiar faces have left the game behind. While players like Tanguay, Zherdev (maybe?) and Prospal still remain available, I feel confident in naming the following five teams as the most improved.

5. New York Rangers:

A lot of teams probably deserve to make this list over the Rangers, maybe Calgary with the addition of Jay Bo, or Atlanta by picking up a supporting cast for Kovalchuk, but I'm going to give spot #5 to the Rangers. There is defense is suspect and overpaid, but when you have Lundqvist in net you can take those chances. The Rangers shocked everyone and added Gaborik, who when healthy is the most skilled player in the NHL. The team also found a way to get rid of Gomez and get a lot back for his overpriced contract (way to go sather!). Higgins will excel in NYR, where he wont be relied upon to score as much as he was in Montreal. The Rangers are much improved, and I still think they'll add another body to replace Zherdev before the puck drops.

4. Toronto Maple Leafs:

The Leafs finished 10th in the league in goals scored last year, which would surprise you when looking at their roster. They lost Antropov and Moore up front, but improvements from a lot of the young offense should help replace those totals. The Leafs finished the year with awful defensive and goaltending stats and thus chose those areas as the ones to address. Komisarek, Beauchemin and Exelby make this team's defense one of the league's best, while Toskala's groin surgery and the addition of "The Monster" should make the Leafs much better between the pipes.

3. New York Islanders:

While you won't see the Islanders go from worst to first, the Islanders made big steps on moving towards a winning record. We start in the crease, where the team added not one starting goalie, but two, giving them a grand total of three. When all three are healthy and playing well, the Isles will be able to trade one of them (not Dipietro of coarse) for even more pieces to their puzzle. The team drafted future superstar John Tavares first overall, giving them the franchise player they desperately needed, while Andy Sutton should make their backend significantly better.

2. Montreal Canadiens:

After what can only be viewed as a failed centennial, the Habs needed to shake things up in a bad way. The team swapped their entire first line of Higgins, Koivu and Kovalev for Cammalleri, Gomez and Gionta, and while I don't know if the team is any better, they changed the chemistry of the team enough to earn them second spot on my list.

1. Tampa Bay Lightning:

A year after the team attempted to build a team around Stamkos, they've done it again. A lot of exits, a lot of enters, but I think in the end this year will be different. The team entered the season last year with a dangerous looking offense, a very weak defense and questionable goaltending. Hedman, Ohlund and Foster are huge additions on the blueline, while a healthy Mike Smith should be good enough for this team to make the playoffs.

Agree? Disagree? Drop by the forums and let me know who you think are the most improved teams. This weekend part two of this will come out, when I decide which five teams have taken a turn for the worst this offseason.

Saturday, August 08, 2009

One Week For Kaberle

Seven days from now Thomas Kaberle's no-trade-window will end, and we will know for sure if Thomas Kaberle will remain a Toronto Maple Leaf. Sources say it is likely he will remain in Toronto, but expect a few last minute offers to come in this week. One should be from the Buffalo Sabres, whose defense is thin and will be relying in a young Tyler Myers to play big minutes should the team not address it's biggest weakness. Other teams still with interest include Atlanta, Florida, Vancouver and St. Louis.

The feel good story of Theo Fleury has taken a bad turn, as reports are coming out today that his comeback is purely based on financial need. Fleury is broke, and a comeback would do wonders for his bank account. Either way, I'd love to see him come back and give it one more shot. I know a lot of Calgary fans want this guy back in red.

Detroit is done their off-season shopping and I can't help but wonder if their cup final streak could be in jeopardy. Hudler replaced with Williams, Hossa replaced with Patrick Eaves, Osgood another year older, without Ty Conklin backing him up. The Wings will need big years from Leino and Abdelkader if they want to stay atop the Central, those Hawks are going to be hard to beat.

Heatley to San Jose rumour still float about, and I do believe he will end up their at some point this offseason. San Jose needs a shakeup and Heatley needs a new home. It's all down to figuring out each sides pieces.

Zherdev, Prospal, Bertuzzi and Tanguay all remain at large, with Zherdev still likely KHL bound. Prospal had been rumoured to the Wings, but that seems unlikely after the Willaims signing. Bertuzzi I'm still hearing will end up in Philly, while Tanguay to Phoenix is still the hot rumour, though Minnesota and Tampa are very much in this.

With Shanahan signed by the Devils, the team has apparently shifted their attention to UFA d-man Martin Skoula.

Thats all for now, check, our twitter, and our forums for all the latest.

Wednesday, August 05, 2009

Is Mats Sundin the Hockey World’s Most Skilled Card Player?

One of Sweden’s best hockey players ever, Mats Sundin, recently became a poker ambassador for and has been seen in numerous TV ads all around the world, but is he as talented on the green felt as he is on the ice? Well, his live tournament stats aren’t that impressive. In fact he hasn’t won a dime! When it comes to winnings, Sundin is far behind another Vancouver resident and former hockey player, Greg Mueller, who has won close to $2 million in tournaments and must be considered the best hockey/card player ever. Sundin, play video poker for recreation and hockey for a living, that’s our suggestion

Monday, August 03, 2009

Zherdev to the Leafs?

Steve Zipay of Newsday reports that the Leafs and Rangers are talking of a deal that would send Zherdev to Toronto for Stempniak and White. I love this deal, as you'd be shipping out another spare d-man and a useless 2.5 million (Stempniak) for a guy who can play on the top line. The best part of this deal is that we get our top-line guy without moving Kaberle, who A) could stay and anchor the PP or b) still be moved for another top-line player. Read Zipay's article here:

Did you get excited over the three-way rumours floating around yesterday? Don't get too ahead of it all, as I've been told by sources that Montreal has not been approached by anyone regarding a Heatley deal. With that said, I still believe San Jose and Ottawa should make a deal that would send Heatley to the Sharks.

The Rangers are looking for a #1 centre, and Mats Sundin could be that answer. The Rangers could also once again get into the Heatley sweepstakes should Zherdev be let go / traded. If the Rangers can get another puck moving d-man (say white?), I'm hearing Rosival could be bought out or sent down.

I'm hearing Bertuzzi is in deep talks with the Fylers, who would be a lot meaner with him and Pronger on the ice.

Prospal and Tanguay remain the two biggest names available. Tanguay to Phoenix continues to float around, while Pittsburgh and Ottawa are other teams said to be joining the chase. As for Prospal, it's been quiet on his front, but I'm hearing LA and Washington have inquired about his services already.

For all the latest rumours, check the Hockeyleaks twitter (@Hockeyleaks), and make sure to check the forums daily!

Friday, July 17, 2009

The Truth On Tanguay

Has Alex Tanguay signed with Florida as has been reported as an E5? no.

Tanguay to Florida is about 80%, but it's not done. Could it get done as early as today? yes, but as of 12:02 pm today nothing has been signed.

Teams are still in this, including Buffalo and Phoenix, and until something is signed and announced publically, these teams are still very much in it.

I'm hearing the LA Kings are closing in on signing Biron..

Kaberle has left than a month remaining on his no-trade window, which means talks should start heating up. Buffalo, Boston and St. Louis, as well as Vancouver, are the three teams you're hearing the most. I will tell you that Washington and Florida are also very much involved in these Kaberle talks. I still believe it's about 90% that Kaberle will be dealt by August 15th.

Todd Bertuzzi remains at large, and yes the Bert to Toronto rumours do have some substance. With that said, Minnesota and Montreal are two more teams I'm hearing. Montreal could really use his size.

One of the best moves of the offseason goes to Calgary, who snapped Nigel Dawes off waivers from Phoenix yesterday. This kid has serious potential and I'm shocked so many teams passed over him during the waiver process.

The fact that Phil Kessel has not signed with boston yet is another sign that he's likely done as a Bruin. The B's are shopping him heavily but need to bring their asking price down before they can move him. That could happen next week.

For more hockey news and rumours check out and our forums!

Monday, July 13, 2009


According to Eklund, Dale Tallon will be fired as GM of the Blackhawks and replaced by Stan Bowman (scotty's son). The move is likely to take place tomorrow

If this is true, and it seems to be the case, I am shocked.

Dale has done a great job with this team, turning them from bottom-feeders to central-division favourites in 2009-2010.

Maybe it's the fact the Blackhawks are over the cap, but I honestly believe that they could easily be under the cap for this year, which is all that matters. Campbell is moveable beyond this season, while a guy like Seabrook could also be sacrificed without really noticing his loss.

I cannot stress how shocked I am at this move, I guess we'll find out more details in the coming days.

For the latest, check the forums and follow @hockeyleaks on twitter

The Twitter Explosion

Over the last month (especially since the NHL Draft), I have found myself using twitter several hours a day. Twitter has really changed the way hockey rumours have been delivered. No matter what, it seems that a rumour is posted on twitter before it is a website. For example, today I had Jacques Lemaire signing with the Devils before it hit Eklund, James Mirtle, Darren Dreger, etc. all post their latest rumours on twitter first, their websites second.

If you don't have a twitter account, I suggest signing up for one so you can be the first to know about EVERYTHING that happens in the NHL.

To get you started, here is a list of the best hockey tweets on twitter.

@hockeyleaks - of coarse, this is me.

@mirtle - James Mirtle of the Globe and Mail and From The Rink. Always one of the first to know when something goes down.

@Eklund - the same great eklund, now in tweet form.

@Bluejacketsbuzz - Eric Smith of, one of the best Blue Jackets reporters on the web.

@All_Habs - Great Habs Blogger

@JonJordan - From, best Tampa Buy coverage you will find anywhere

@TheFourthPeriod - David Pagnotta of The Fourth Period, has been known to break a deal or two in his time.

@kausatoday - Kevin Allen of USA Today, a must follow for Hockey fans.

@komisarek - Mike Komisarek

@martinhavlat - Martin Havlat, who says "the truth will come out about what happened in chicago

@DarrenDreger - Dregs from TSN, has been great this offseason with breaking signings and giving us accurate rumours.

@brandon_felder - best preds twitter' around

@chrisbosh - this guy is addicted to twitter, Bosh must tweet 20-30 times a night.

@damospin - Damien Cox of the Toronto Star

@FadooBobcat - Bob McCown from the Fan 590

@andystrickland - Best Blues guy around, but does a good job of the rest of the NHL too

@BDGallof - Really strong Islanders blogger

@bluelineradio - our favourite radio station from Las Vegas, I do a trade deadline show for them every year.

@brian_metzer - your source for all the latest Penguins news

@nhldigest - Tyler does a good job of covering the entire NHL

So get on twitter and send me a message, I really can't say enough about how Twitter has changed the rumour's a lot of fun

Sunday, July 12, 2009

Sunday Rumours

- The biggest UFA left on the market is Tanguay, and I'm surprised he is still available. It looks as though he will get something around a 2-3 year deal worth $3 million per. The teams to watch are NYI and Colorado, though I'm hearing Columbus could be in on this. One source even has Calgary getting him back if the Flames can find the funds to do so.

- Zubov seems to be between returning to Dallas and ending up in Columbus. Dallas really needs Zubov back as this is a franchise going in the wrong direction.

- As I've said all along, I believe Heatley will end up in San Jose. San Jose has to shake things up and this is the fastest way to do so. Marleau, Cheechoo and Ehrhoff are three players the sharks are rumoured to be shopping, with each player being linked to about five teams each. We know the Islanders would love to grab one of those players, while Montreal, Columbus, Toronto, and of coarse Ottawa have been linked to at least one of them.

- Mats Sundin, if he doesn't retire, will be an August signing. If he returns, his only two options are Vancouver and Toronto. It could end up being which team has room under the cap to bring him in. I'd expect him to sign a one year deal worth around $4 million.

- Martin Biron is still available and I'm hearing he could land in LA.

- Despite all of Chicago's cap concerns, they like there team as is and don't plan on worrying about all their cap issues until next summer. They're going for it now.

- Zherdev and Kessel are the two biggest RFAs on the market. Zherdev has filed for arbitration and rumours have the Rangers willing to let him go if the price tag is too high. As for Kessel, teams have not made the RFA an offer yet due to the fact that the Bruins still have a little room under the cap and could probably match an offer. This will change in the coming weeks and things will get interesting. The Bruins are still looking for a top three d-man.

How has your team faired this offseason? We'd love for you to write about it at our Team Bloggers blog located at If you are already registered there, post away, and if not, send me an email at and I will get you set up so you can post!

Monday, July 06, 2009

Two Breaking Signings...

The Leafs have signed Francois Beauchemin to a three year deal worth about 3.5 per season.

According to a source, the Ottawa Senators have signed free agent forward Alexei Kovalev to a contract, still looking for confirmation and details on this one

Wednesday, July 01, 2009

Heatley an Oiler, Gaborik a Ranger

Both are done as per a good source.

Gaborik will make 5.75 a year for 5 years

Heatley will go to Edmonton for the package discussed last night (Penner, Cogliano, Smid)

go to the chat and forums for the latest


Kaberle could be headed to Boston for Kessel today

Kubina to Atlana for an unnamed package.

so many rumours, get in the chat now!

Tuesday, June 30, 2009

Heatley To Oilers / CHAT NOW

Sources tell that the Oilers are moving in on a deal to acquire Dany Heatley.

*Note: while writing this blog, TSN has also posted the same rumour.

The deal would send Heatley and his large contract to the Oilers for Dustin Penner, Ladislav Smid and Andrew Cogliano.

Great move for the Sens, who badly need this youth injection into their system.

Go to in the next five minutes for a pre-July 1 chat.

The Top 25 Free Agents

Here is my list of the top 25 UFAs to hit the market tomorrow, though half-way done my list TSN announces that Bouwmeester has signed. I promise my predictions were all down for Bouwmeester before the announcement, so both my dollar figure and team were pretty dead on. Let's see how I do on the other 24.


The Sedins
Predicted Value: $7 million each
Teams Interested: Vancouver, Toronto, Minnesota, Montreal predicts: Vancouver before July 1st, Toronto on/after July 1st.


Jay Bouwmeester
Predicted Value: $6.5 million
Teams Interested: Calgary, Edmonton, Vancouver predicts: Calgary
Signs with: Calgary Flames, five years - $33 million.


Marian Hossa
Predicted Value: $7.5 million
Teams Interested: Detroit, Edmonton, Vancouver, Minnesota, LA predicts: Detroit.


Marian Gaborik
Predicted Value: $5 million
Teams Interested: Vancouver, Edmonton, Montreal, LA predicts: Vancouver


Mike Komisarek
Predicted Value: $5.5 million
Teams Interested: Montreal, NYI, Toronto, Boston, NJ predicts: Toronto


Martin Havlat
Predicted Value: $6 million
Teams Interested: Chicago, Montreal, LA, Edmonton predicts: Vancouver


Mike Cammalleri
Predicted Value: $5.5 million
Teams Interested: Toronto, Vancouver, Washington, Atlanta predicts: Toronto if they don't sign Sedins, Vancouver if they don't sign Sedins.


Alex Tanguay
Predicted Value: $5 million
Teams Interested: Colorado, Washington, Dallas predicts: Washington


Mattias Ohlund
Predicted Value: $4 million
Teams Interested: San Jose, Colorado, Vancouver, Montreal predicts: Montreal


Saku Koivu
Predicted Value: $5 million
Teams Interested: Minnesota, Anaheim predicts: Minnesota


Nikolai Khabibulin
Predicted Value: $5 million
Teams Interested: Chicago, Edmonton predicts: Edmonton


Brian Gionta
Predicted Value: $3.5 million
Teams Interested: NJ, Calgary, Carolina, Montreal predicts: New Jersey


Alex Kovalev
Predicted Value: $4 million
Teams Interested: Washington, Montreal, Colorado predicts: Montreal


Mats Sundin
Predicted Value: $4.5 million
Teams Interested: Toronto, Anaheim, Vancouver, NYR predicts: Vancouver


Derek Morris
Predicted Value: $4.5 million
Teams Interested: Phoenix, NYR, Florida, Washington predicts: Florida


Nik Antropov
Predicted Value: $4 million
Teams Interested: NYR, Nashville, St. Louis, Vancouver, Florida predicts: NYR


Erik Cole
Predicted Value: $4 million
Teams Interested: Boston, Carolina, Montreal predicts: Carolina


Francois Beauchemin
Predicted Value: $3.5 million
Teams Interested: Montreal, Toronto, Boston, Anaheim, Vancouver predicts: Toronto


Todd Bertuzzi
Predicted Value: $2.5 million
Teams Interested: Calgary, Edmonton, Montreal, NYI predicts: NYI


Mikael Samuelsson
Predicted Value: $3 million
Teams Interested: Detroit, Atlanta, NYI, Tampa Bay predicts: Atlanta


Robert Lang
Predicted Value: $3.5 million
Teams Interested: Montreal, Nashville, Columbus, LA predicts: Montreal


Matthieu Schneider
Predicted Value: $3.5 million
Teams Interested: Montreal, Boston, Florida, LA predicts: Montreal


Sameul Pahlsson
Predicted Value: $2 million
Teams Interested: Toronto, Anaheim, Chicago, Vancouver predicts: Anaheim


Chris Neil
Predicted Value: $1.5 million
Teams interested: Toronto, Ottawa, Minnesota, Columbus, Chicago predicts: Toronto


Mike Knuble
Predicted Value: $2.5 million
Teams interested: Philly, Montreal, Pittsburgh, Nashville predicts: Pittsburgh

Unfortunatly I have to work tomorrow until 330, so I will not be online before 4pm. The good news is that I will be having our annual July 1st chat tomorrow at 430 pm. Check the forums and the blogs for details and a link.

It's just like Christmas eve, I cant wait to see who ends up where tomorrow!

What The Gomez Deal Means...

For those of you living in a hole, the Montreal Canadiens acquired forward Scott Gomez, Tom Pyatt and Mike Busto from the New York Rangers for Chris Higgins, Ryan McDonagh and Pavel Valentenko.

The Habs win this deal, though I don't think Gomez is at all the player to turn around the Habs season.

So what does this mean for the Rangers? It means the team has quite a bit more money to spend tomorrow, and those funds could be used on Heatley.

It's between NYR and Edmonton as far as I'm hearing, though you can never count San Jose out of these talks. I'm hearing Ottawa is looking at Penner and one of edmonton's goalie prospects, plus one more high-profile forward from the Oilers. The Sens are still hoping to get Staal from the Rangers.

If a deal isn't completed for Heatley tonight, there is still a hope. A source told me the Sens would accept a early round pick in return for the $4 million they must spend tomorrow.

As for the Habs, Gomez is a big investment for them and this basically ends the chances of the Sedins coming to Quebec. For those wondering, the Habs have not offered Koivu or Tanguay a contract. They have made last-chance offers on Komisarek and Kovalev, with Komisarek already announcing he will test the open market.

Thats all for now, in the next few hours my free agent preview / plans for tomorrow will be up.

Monday, June 29, 2009

July 1 Approaches...

With UFA season just hours away, so much is still to be determined before then. For those looking for a Free Agent Preview, I will have something up later tonight or tomorrow regarding that. For now, we look at what could happen over the next 31 hours.

Dany Heatley will be traded before July 1st or not at all. He is owed $4 million dollars on July 1st, and if Heatley is still a Senator by noon on July 1st, it is extremely doubtful he will be moved. Still, the Rangers are making quite the last-minute push to bring in Heatley, but to this point, have not stepped up to the Rangers asking price which is said to include Marc Staal +.

The Sharks are still looking at dealing Patrick Marleau, but Nabokov is not on the market. Marleau will likely be dealt after all the early july fun is over.

Jonas "The Monster" Gustavsson is still on the market, with Dallas and Toronto the two finalists. This really is a toss-up, with me personally thinking Dallas will win this. With that said, I'm hoping for Toronto.

The Sedins could very well be staying in Vancouver as Mike Gillis has flown to Sweden to give on final push. I still think they'll stay, but if they don't, watch Toronto, Montreal, Minnesota and the Islanders.

Phil Kessel is very much available, but some feel the Bruins will wait until the UFA's are snatched up and the return could be higher. With that said, the Bruins are right up against a cap and would struggle to match any offersheet of above $3.5 million, which is around the number it would cost to just qualify kessel.

As far as Kaberle goes, he will likely move in the next 10 days, with Boston, Anaheim, and Philly all having inquired about him over the last few days. Philly is interested despite acquiring Pronger, with Toronto willing to take back some salary from Philly if they can get the player they have their eye on.

As far as UFA #1 Jay Bouwmeester goes, sources tell that contract talks began with Bouwmeester today and the Flames are optimistic they can get him signed.

Keep your eye on as the free agent preview will up before you know it!

Thursday, June 25, 2009

Rumour Mill's In Overdrive

Here we go...

Vincent Lecavalier to Montreal talks have hit a stall this morning, and sources are telling me it's at about 25% he gets dealt.

Polling a list of ten sources last night: 70% Islanders take Hedman, 20% Tavares, 10% Duchene. Boy is that #1 pick going to be interesting.

The San Jose Sharks are expected to be this weekends busiest team. Clowe isn't expected to be a Shark beyond this weekend, with TSN confirming that both Toronto and Philly have shown interest. Clowe could be part of an even bigger deal, with the Sharks shopping both Marleau and Nabokov. Strong speculation that at least one of those two will be dealt this weekend.

The Sens continue to shop Heatley, and the St. Louis Blues are very in this. Who else is in this? The Boston Bruins. Kessel would be part of this deal 100%.

The Leafs are another team to watch, with Burke really attempting to move a roster player or two and a couple other mid-round picks for another first round pick. This could be used to move up or to pick two great prospects.

Jay Bouwmeester's rights will likely be dealt today or tomorrow, with the price being a third round pick. The Flyers, Canucks and Oilers are all pushing this, I see the final price being a 3rd and a 5th round pick.

Chris Pronger could very-well be on the move this weekend. Montreal is very in this, just like they were at the deadline.

Demitra came out and said that Gaborik had not purchased a house in Vancouver, but sources still believe Gaborik will be a Canuck should the Sedins not re-sign in Vancouver.

Another team to watch this weekend could be the Columbus Blue Jackets, who will be looking to move up in this year's draft. One source told me that management isn't confident they can re-sign Nash following this season, and would move him for a package that blew them away.

I am off to work shortly, and then off to Montreal for the draft early in the morning. Unfortunatly, my hotel in Montreal does not have an internet connection, so for all updates you have two sources:


I will be updating my twitter VERY often from the draft via my cell phone, so make sure to check that often.


I will be sending texts all day and night to a forum member who will be updating this post with all the latest news and rumours I acquire from the draft.

Make sure to stay glued to those two sources all day tomorrow as it's going to be one of the most exciting days the NHL has seen in a long, long time.

2009 NHL Mock Draft / Part 2

So here are my thirty selections in the NHL Draft. The top ten is difficult, because I predict major movement. I believe LA will deal their pick, while at this point it is 50/50 on Tampa Bay holding on to theirs. With that said, here is my prediction for the top 30 picks as they currently sit.

1. New York Islanders - Victor Hedman

2. Tampa Bay Lightning - John Tavares

3. Colorado Avalanche - Matt Duchene

4. Atlanta Thrashers - Evander Kane

5. LA Kings - Oliver Ekman-Larsson

6. Phoenix Coyotes - Jared Cowan

7. Toronto Maple Leafs - Brayden Schenn

8. Dallas Stars - Magnus Paajarvi-Svensson

9. Ottawa Senators - Nazem Kadri

10. Edmonton Oilers - Demitry Kulikov

11. Nashville Predators - Jordan Scroeder

12. Minnesota Wild - Zach Kassian

13. Buffalo Sabres - Scott Glennie

14. Florida Panthers - Ryan Ellis

15. Anaheim Ducks - David Rundblad

16. Columbus Blue Jackets - John Moore

17. St. Louis Blues - Jacob Josefeson

18. Montreal Canadiens - Louis Leblanc

19. New York Rangers - Carter Ashton

20. Calgary Flames - Simon Despres

21. Philadelphia Flyers - Dylan Olson

22. Vancouver Canucks - Stefan Elliot

23. New Jersey Devils - Robin Lehner

24. Washington Capitals - Nick Leddy

25. Boston Bruins - Chris Kreider

26. New York Islanders - Landon Ferraro

27. Carolina Hurricanes - Calvin DeHaan

28. Chicago Blackhawks - Peter Holland

29. Detroit Red Wings - Kyle Palmieri

30. Pittsburgh Penguins - Tim Erixon

Tuesday, June 23, 2009

2009 NHL Mock Draft / Part 1 is proud to bring you the 2009 NHL Mock Draft. Each pick has been made by a blogger / hockey writer who specializes in the team they are choosing from. They know the NHL well, and they know exactly what their team's needs are. This is as accurate as it gets, so let's get started. This mock draft covers the first 20 picks in this years draft.

1. Timothy Hilts / writer for - "With the first overall selection in the 2009 NHL entry draft, the New York Islanders are proud to select John Tavares. The Islanders need a superstar to draw fans and this is the guy to do just that."

2. Jon Jordan / blogger for - "With the second selection in the 2009 NHL entry draft, the Tampa Bay Lightning are proud to select Victor Hedman."

Jon had this to say about his pick:

"With Tavares gone, the Lightning will no doubt take Victor Hedman.

For a team that needs a cornerstone defenseman who can fill a need both
immediately and for the long-term future, there is no better match than
Hedman and the bolts.

Of course, if whoever is playing the role of Brian Burke in this draft
wanted to talk turkey with me, I would most definitely be willing to
entertain the thought of a deal (as would the real life Lightning ...)"

3. David Driscoll-Carignan / owner of - "With the third selection in the 2009 Entry Draft, the Colorado Avalanche are proud to select Matt Duchene. Duchene projects to be a talented two-way pivot man and would seem capable of forming a solid 1-2 punch up the middle with Paul Stastny for many, many years"

4. Scott Fuller / writer for - "With the fourth selection in the 2009 NHL Entry Draft, the Atlanta Thrashers are proud to select Magnus Paajarvi-Svensson. This kid has Tremendous Offensive upside in a big package. Strong on the puck, just needs to work on his defense. Solid showing in the WJC."

5. Mark Millard / writer for - "With the fifth overall selection in the 2009 NHL entry draft, the LA Kings select Jacob Josefson."

we asked Mark why he took Josefson so early in the draft.

"If Justin Williams can stay healthy and regain his old 30-goal self, and with a good up and coming offensive presence in young players like Kopitar, Brown and Frolov, a strong two way Swede is exactly what the Kings need. With two years experience playing for Djurgården of the Swedish Elite League, Josefson should have no problem making the transition to the NHL, helping the young Kings netminders in the process with his strong back checking ability."

6. Allison / writer for - "The Hamilton, I mean Phoenix Coyotes are proud to select Evander Kane. The guy impressed at the WJC, and 96 regular season points for the Giants combined with his ability to play a physical style make him a perfect fit for the young Coyote's squad"

7. Corey Johnson / owner of - "With the seventh selection in the 2009 NHL Entry Draft, the Toronto Maple Leafs are proud to select Brayden Schenn. This kid is a leader and has a great career in front of him. It doesn't hurt that his brother is already a star on the Leafs."

8. TJ Hurst / writer for - "The Dallas Stars are pleased to select Zack Kassian."

Here is what TJ had to say about the Stars selection of the big Petes forward.

"The Dallas Stars have become a big player in the European markets, particularly Sweden and often use the European professional leagues (mainly the Swedish Elite League) to develop their players which has many thinking Oliver Ekman Larsson will find a home with the Stars. But he's just too small for a Dallas brand of hockey. With Kassian they get the total package. He comes with big energy and 120% work ethic. Make no mistake, he will hurt you on the ice and isn't afraid to back it up by dropping the gloves. And while that may be the biggest part of his game it masks his other skillsets. While his skating and speed need a little improvement, his hands are exceptional. He's not afraid to step into the dangerous areas such as the corners and in front of the net. He's a workhouse and an individual who lead by example. Hitting hard and often, but also has the finish to make him a real threat in front of the net and on the rush. At this stage of his career, he's a Brendan Morrow in the making which makes him a hot commodity for the Dallas Stars."

9. Mark Christopher / blogger for - "For the second year in a row, the Sens are proud to select a swedish defenseman, this time it's Oliver Ekman-Larsson. Plain and simple OEL just doesn't get tired, the kid has the ability to play 30+ minutes a night if called upon. While he will need to strengthen up and fill out his frame, Oliver has all the necessary skills to control the blueline similiar to fellow Swede Nik Lidstrom. OEL has seen his stock jump more than any other prospect over the past few months despite missing out on the World Jrs."

10. Adam Forsyth / writer for - "The Oilers would have liked to select Kassian, but because he's taken, the Oilers are proud to select Ryan Ellis. Ellis is a game changing offensive gem with very under-rated defensive abillities.
Smallish. Yes. However, his vision on the ice is too difficult to ignore and with
a big booming sot, he's a PP quarterback for many years to come"

11. Brandon Felder / blogger for - "The Nashville Predators are proud to select Jordan Schroeder. The Preds need forward depth and Schroeder has previous experience with Colin Wilson in the World Juniors. Should he slip to 11, the Preds should select Schroeder.

12. Jeff Small / writer for - "With the 12th overall pick, the Minnesota Wild are very happy to select Jared Cowan."

Here is what Small said about the luck of getting Cowan so late in the draft.

"New GM Chuck Fletcher would be overjoyed to select Jared Cowen who at one point was considered to be challenging John Tavares and Victor Hedman for one of the top two spots in the entry draft. While the Wild already have some pretty impressive young defenseman including Brent Burns, Nick Schultz, and Tyler Cuma this pick is about choosing the best player available, which at 12 is no doubt Jared Cowen. At 18, Cowen already stands at 6'5, 218 pounds and is considered to be one of if not the best defensive defenseman in the draft. The biggest question mark concerning Cowen will be if he can return from season ending reconstructive surgery on his right knee. Although a big injury, if Cowen can return to form there is no question that he is a steal at #12 and will fit right in with Calgary, Edmonton, Vancouver, and Colorado once he makes the NHL"

13. Colin Lim / writer for - "The Buffalo Sabres are proud to select Chris Kreider. Kreider gives Buffalo some much needed size down the middle. He has a natural goal scoring ability and should be a solid top-two centreman for the Sabres in a couple of years."

14. Rey Edmonds / writer for - "The Florida Panthers are proud to select Nazim Kadri. Florida needs a forward that can be relied upon with both offensively and defensively. Micheal Frolik is the only forward in the system who has really good offensive skills. Horton, Booth, Mattias, Campbell are the guys that can create room and will be able to complement skill players such as Kadri. Some could argue that Kadri outplayed Tavares in the OHL playoffs with the London Knights. Skill level isn't as good as Tavares, but Kadri's compete level is as good as anyone. "

15. Edgar Arce / writer for - "The Ducks are proud to select Louis Leblanc."

16. Eric Smith / blogger for - "The Columbus Blue Jackets are pleased to select Dmitry Kulikov"

we asked Eric Smith about the surprise of getting a top 10 prospect at #16.

"The Blue Jackets need a center and I think they will draft one
because they don't even have a warm body at center in Syracuse but Kulikov is just
way too good to pass up and he should be gone by now in the draft. The top rated
Russian, played this year in Drummondville
and certainly helped his drafted stock. 6′1″ and 195 pounds, he has
enough size to play physical when needed but he is a puck moving
defenseman that loves to score. Had 62 points in 57 games this year.
Very good skater that understands that he has to play both ends of the
ice. Kulikov is the full package and will be a top 4 defenseman plus be able to QB
the power play some day. The only down fall is that he shoots left which the CBJ is
in desperate need of a right handed shot from the point. GM Scott Howson will be
extactic if Kulikov falls into his lap at 16."

17. Marc Whittington / writer for - "The St. Louis Blues are proud to select Scott Glennie."

18. All Habs / owner of and organizer of the NHL Draft Tweetup. - "The Habs are proud to select Carter Ashton. the Canadiens need immediate help up front. Ashton is a 6'3" 205 lb power forward who is an offensive force on the RW. He skates well, is tough to knock off the puck, and goes hard to the net"

19. Catherine Marzi / ESPN employee - "The New York Rangers are proud to select Peter Holland. Theteam will benefit from the young forward to support in scoring. At 6'2, he has a lot of room to grow muscle mass in the off season, and be a large physical presence on a scoring line (note: his officially reported weight is lower than some other quotes so he likely is already larger/stronger than reported). He has been noted an effective on the power play, and has been cited as a leader. He will make a solid addition to the Rangers squad.

20. Corey Johnson / owner of - "The Calgary Flames are proud to select John Moore with the 20th overall pick. This kid is a tank and will be a big part of the Flames future. The fact that he slipped to 20 is a shock to the Flames organization."

so there you have it, the first 20 teams predicted. Surprised David Runblad didn't chosen, while Moore going 20 is also a big surprise. Check tomorrow for my mock draft, where I post my first round predictions.