Insider Only NHL: Latest Trade Rumblings: Teams preparing to make a run at Kovalchuk

Hurricanes not moving Eric Staal
A number of league sources have disputed any talk that the Carolina Hurricanes are even considering the possibility of moving Eric Staal. Not going to happen under any circumstances I’m told
A report by the Ottawa Sun indicated the St. Louis Blues were making a play for Staal.
Market growing for Ilya Kovalchuk
The Atlanta Thrashers have yet to make Ilya Kovalchuk available for trade but when or if they do, teams are already beginning preparations.
The Flyers, Kings, Oilers and Canucks are four teams prepared to make a major play for Kovalchuk, sources tell me.
The Kings are willing to offer a package centering around Dustin Brown and Jack Johnson, while Philadelphia has made a number of players available including Daniel Briere, Matt Carle Simone Gagne and Scott Hartnell to name a few.
However, to land Kovalchuk, the Flyers are going to have to be willing to move a key young player like Claude Giroux or James van Riemsdyk.
Van Riemsdyk is believed to be an untouchable along with Mike Richards and Jeff Carter.
Another team lurking in the Kovalchuk sweepstakes is the Boston Bruins.
For now the Flyers remain active in pursuing other avenues. The team would love to make a play for Stars goaltender Marty Turco but no such deal will materialize until closer to the trade deadline.
Flyers – Penguins heavily scouted?
Thursday nights rematch between the Philadelphia Flyers and Pittsburgh Penguins is projected to be heavily scouted with 10-12 teams expected to be in attendance.
Last night 6 teams had scouts in attendance with the Flyers a primary target but a few teams were in the house believed to be scouting Penguins defenseman

Kris Letang. One team was the Dallas Stars, sources tell me. Another team highly interested in Letang is the Anahiem Ducks.
Pittsburgh has not made Letang available for trade but like Ray Shero says, if your names not Crosby, Malkin or Fleury, you listen.
However, there’s nothing on the trade front for Letang.
As for contract talks with Letang, according to a source close to Letang’s agent Kent Hughes, there has been no movement from either side. Doesn’t appear to be any sense of urgency, especially from Pittsburgh’s end.
From Pittsburgh’s standpoint, there in a difficult place because it’s hard to divulge Letang’s value.
In the short-term many league executives have Letang rated as a $2.75 million per season player at the max. Some in the Penguins organization don’t want to commit more than $2.5 million to Letang. Any type of long-term deal, Letang’s camp wants upwards of $3.5 million per season, likely in the $4 million a year range.

About The Author

William DePaoli

TIOPS Insider

William DePaoli is the President/Founder of Inside Pittsburgh Sports LLC and can be reached at wdepaoli@insidepittsburghsports.com

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