Insider Only NHL: Pens’ still kicking the tires on Torres?

Thursday’s NHL Rumor Rundown
Movement of small market teams
On Wednesday morning we touched base surrounding the next CBA talks. The biggest concern might not be the players association but the owners. There’s a group of at least 7-to-8 teams who are eyeing a significant reduction in the salary cap.
The push from these owners is to have the cap at a set number in the low 50’s-to-high-40’s range.
Capitals to remain quiet
The Washington Capitals entered free agency with two pressing needs; Adding a defensive defenseman and signing a No. 2 line center. The team has not taking care of either need and surprisingly are believed to be done in free agency.
Capitals GM George McPhee told Tairk El Bashir of the Washington Post on Wednesday that he is done free agent shopping.
Neal will have to settle for two year deal with Stars?

Due to financial constraints, the Dallas Stars are facing difficulties in locking up 22 year old winger James Neal. The 22-year old scored 27 goals and 28 assists for 55 points in 78 games last season for the Stars.
Contract talks for the moment have gone nowhere between Pat Morris, the agent for Neal and Stars management.
The Dallas Stars have reportedly offered a 2 year deal worth $2.5 million. Indications are the Stars have made it known they can’t go past a two year deal due to uncertainty surrounding their ownership situation.
Pens’ still keeping in touch with Torres’ agent
Penguins management continues to mull the possibility of adding winger Raffi Torres to their roster, sources tell Inside Pittsburgh Sports.
Pens GM Ray Shero and Steve Reich the agent for Torres spoke again on Tuesday. The Penguins are open to adding Torres on a one year deal with a salary in the low $1 million range.
Torres were told is looking for a two year deal and the “right situation.” His camp will remain patient.
Quick Hits
*The Iyla Kovalchuk watch is now into day 15. In the past week, Jay Grossman, the agent for Kovalchuk has tried to get others involved but is having no luck. Even the New York Rangers have balked at Grossman’s demands which was upwards of $9 million per season.
Kovalchuk and his representatives left Los Angeles this week without a deal. The New Jersey Devils are believed to be the only other team in the running.
*Mike Modano wants to remain in the Western Conference and has yet to follow up with Eastern Conference teams Pittsburgh and New York that made inquiries.
*The Chicago Tribune reports that goaltender Antti Niemi wants to avoid arbitration and sign a long-term deal with the Blackhawks.

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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