In what is disappointing news for Cup contenders, Carolina Hurricanes forward Tuomo Ruutu has signed a four extension worth $19 million. The deal has an average cap hit of $4.75 million. A soft deadline was set for today and Ruutu resigning weakens the top-6 forward trade market.
Latest NHL Rumblings Will Ruutu be back on the block?: In the next 24-48 hours, GM’s around the league will know whether the Carolina Hurricanes intend to deal forward Tuomo Ruutu. Sources say the Hurricanes have a four year offer on the table, believed to be in the $15-$18 million range. Ruutu has been seeking a five year deal but there has been optimism that the two sides will reach an agreement today. However, if talks surprisingly break off, Ruutu will be back in play by Thursday at the latest. Ruutu an impending unrestricted free agent is not due back until the second week of March, which could limit his suitors to teams like the New York Rangers, Detroit Red Wings, and Boston Bruins who are in comfortable positions where they can wait for Ruutu to get healthy.
The Penguins are back on the ice later this afternoon, returning from the Christmas Holiday. The team has a busy week before a week long break in between games following a New Years eve afternoon tilt with the New Jersey Devils. The Penguins in the midst of a three game winning streak, host Carolina and Philadelphia at home on Tuesday and Thursday, respectively, followed by a 3:00 p.m. afternoon game against the Devils on Saturday. Pittsburgh plays 5 of their next 6 games at home. Onto some Trade Talk….. Tangradi’s value to Penguins I said it before the season and i still feel this way: Eric Tangradi’s long-term value to the Penguins will eventually be in the trade market. Despite a wide belief around the league that Tangradi is no longer regarded as a top-5 prospect in the Penguins organization, at 22 years old, a power forward type with someRead More »
Â Wednesday’s Ice Report Red-hot Stars set for Showdown with Pens: The Dallas Stars (11-3-0, 24 pts) defeated the Washington Capitals (9-4-0, 18pts) 5-2 on Tuesday night, extending their winning streak to four games and now boast the best record in the NHL. It was a matchup of the No. 2 and No. 3 goal scoring teams and the Stars pulled away in the third period, scoring three unanswered goals en route to a 5-2 win. Dealing with bankruptcy and losing star center Brad Richard to free agency this past off-season, the Stars have been the story of the NHL season. Dallas measured up quite well against the Washington Capitals on Tuesday night and Friday night they get another matchup with an elite team in the Eastern Conference in the Pittsburgh Penguins. “It’s a good measuring stick for us,” coach Glen Gulutzan said after the game, via Associated Press. “We’re tryingRead More »
Jagr in talks with Habs, Red Wings The two front runners emerging in the Jaromir Jagr sweepstakes appear to be the Montreal Canadiens and Detroit Red Wings. Jagr’s agent Petr Svoboda tells ESPN’s Pierre LeBrun that the Montreal Canadiens and Detroit Red Wings are among team’s they have spoken with. Montreal has been at the top of Jagr’s wishlist for sometime, due to his close relationship with Tomas Plekanec. What remains to be seen is how interested in Montreal is. The Red Wings, meanwhile, are exploring the possibility. Red Wings GM Ken Holland tells LeBrun that talks with Jagr’s camp are just preliminary at this point. It appears Jagr’s previous agents at the NHL level, JP Barry and Pat Brisson are not involved in these negotiations. Reportedly, Jagr has also contacted the Washington Capitals and New York Rangers. The Penguins remain not interested. Jokinen, Upshall expected to hit the openRead More »
Free Agency Buzz *The Atlanta Thrashers will be shopping for wingers this off-season. Contract talks with winger Maxim Afinogenov have gone nowhere and Colby Armstrong has already made his intentions known that he intends to test free agency. Afinogenov, 30, is coming off a breakout season scoring 24 goals and 61 points. Afinogenov is looking for a significant raise over his $800,000 salary from 2009-2010 but a stumbling block in talks with the Thrashers has been the term of the contract. Afinogenov is seeking a mult-year deal and Thrashers management doesn’t appear ready to commit beyond two years. Look for Alexei Ponikarovsky to be a target of the Thrashers. *Hurricanes winger Ray Whitney and Sabres winger Raffi Torres will test free agency. Both were primary targets of the Pittsburgh Penguins during the trade deadline. Whitney, 38, made $3.5 million last season. Torres made $2.75 million. *The market for defensemen willRead More »
Trade Freeze Ends on Feb. 28th (11:59 p.m.) Trade buzz during the Olympic break has been on Hurricanes winger Ray Whitney. Whitney had previously drawn significant interest from up to 6 teams but the Hurricanes asking price and Whitney’s NTC have derailed talks with a number of teams. One team yet to become a suitor for Whitney is the Pittsburgh Penguins. One source said it’s likely that Whitney was discussed this week between J.P. Barry, the agent for Whitney, and Ray Shero but Pittsburgh continues to balk at the Hurricanes asking price of a high draft choice and prospect Luca Caputi in exchange for Whitney and defenseman Andrew Alberts. Indications are Carolina doesn’t have much interest in dealing with Pittsburgh due to their unwillingness to include a high draft pick and a mid/top tier prospect. Their efforts have been elsewhere. The Hurricanes have been involved in talks with the Kings,Read More »
Friday Rumor Roundup Capitals a fit for Souray Edmonton Olilers defenseman Sheldon Souray will be sidelined for uo to 6 weeks with a broken wrist but is still a candidate to be moved at the trade deadline. According to TSN.ca, Souray gave Oilers management a list of 6 teams he will accept a trade too —Anaheim Ducks, Dallas Stars, Los Angeles Kings, Washington Capitals, Philadelphia Flyers and New York Rangers. While it is difficult to trade an injured player, the Washington Capitals are in position to take that risk. Of the 6 teams on Souray’s list, Washington cn wait for Souray to get back into the lineup by late March and be ready for a playoff run. That is not a legitimate option with the other five suitors. Washington will be active in looking to upgrade their blueline. Souray has two years left on his contract with a cap hitRead More »
Inside the NHL Lombardi looking to make major splash Los Angeles Kings GM Dean Lombardi is not in any danger of losing his job but pressure is building on Lombardi to get the Kings in the playoffs. The Kings are the 8th seed at this moment in the Western Conference and missing the playoffs for the fourth straight season under Lombardi is what will put his job in jeopardy beyond next season. Kings management saw this season as the year that the Kings take the next step and while there have been signs of that, it still might not be enough to get into the playoffs. With the trade deadline less than 8 weeks away, Lombardi is believed to be prepared to make a major splash at the trade deadline. Speculation continues to center around Ilya Kovalchuk with the Kings prepared to offer a 4-for-1 package centered around Jack JohnsonRead More »