Insider Only NHL: Source: Granato on the Thrashers radar

Sunday’s NHL Rumor Mill

  • The growing consensus last summer is that the Los Angeles Kings over-paid for defenseman Rob Scuderi who signed a 4 year deal worth $3.4 million per season. Nearly a year later, good luck finding a member of the Kings organization who believes that now.
  •  Scuderi has drawn rave reviews from the Kings organization and they believe he has been worth every penny as others now do.
  • The Kings enter the off-season just a move or two away from making the jump among the elite teams in the West. Kevin Allen of the USA Today wrote weeks ago that “there is an expectation that the Kings will make a big splash in the free-agent marketplace.”
  • The two big names being mentioned from the likes of Allen and Pierre LeBrun of ESPN is Ilya Kovalchuk and Patrick Marleau. There are doubts that the Kings will meet Kovalchuk’s demands and Marleau is a much reasonble option. League sources also indicate that Sergei Gonchar will also be very much on the Kings radar.
  • Could Andrei Markov make a surprise return for game 6 against Pittsburgh? Elliott Freidman tweeted last night “Canadiens trying to find brace that will allow Markov to play. Gauthier: we do not comment on speculation; Markov out indefinitely” A return for the series remains unlikely.
  • The bigger concern for the Canadiens could be the status of Hal Gill who was rumored to be injured after game 5.
  • Sources close to Ryan Malone tell me the veteran would love a change of scenery and has no interest in going through another rebuilding period but it’s unlikely that the former Penguin will demand a trade.
  • If former Minnesota Wild GM Doug Risebrough is hired, Malone won’t be going anywhere. Risebrough is very high on Malone and was prepared to make a strong run at him in 2008 prior to Malone signing with Tampa Bay before the free agency period.
  • Risenbrough is reportedly among the top candidates for the Lightning’s GM job along with Toronto’s Dave Nonis and Detroits Steve Yzerman. Former Pittsburgh Penguins GM Craig Patrick is not among the shortlist of candidates. Patrick is actively trying to get back into the game.
  • The Philadelphia Flyers came into the season with expectations of competing for a Stanley Cup and despite being on the verge of being ousted in the second round of the playoffs by the Boston Bruins, the Flyers season has to be considered a success based on their early struggles and barely sneaking into the playoffs. Not to mention key injuries to Jeff Carter and Simon Gagne in the playoffs.
  • It will be another off-season of goalie shopping for the Flyers. They failed miserably with the signing of Ray Emery and lucked out with journeyman Brian Boucher carrying them through the playoffs.
  • The Flyers may get it right this off-season and target a young promising goaltender that they can build a team around for the future instead of going after an aging Marty Turco for example. Word out of the organization is that the Flyers intend to target Vancouver’s Cory Schneider.
  • Atlanta Thrashers GM Rick Dudley is taking his time going through an extensive coaching search. Dudley is looking heavily at AHL coaches and assistant coaches in the NHL ranks.  Although he is not considered the favorite for the job, Pittsburgh’s Tony Granato is among the shortlist of candidates on Dudley’s radar.
  • Granato though is not a candidate the Columbus Blue Jackets coaching job . The Thrashers have yet to ask for permission to speak to Granato.

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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