TIOPS Inside Buzz
*Rumblings, Musings, Opinions*
— A familiar name to Penguins fans is strongly on the trade block:
Carolina Hurricanes center Jordan Staal.
As former Hurricanes GM Ron Francis saw the 29 year old Staal as a building block in his long-term plan, declined to entertain any trade inquiries into Staal the past two years, namely from the Pittsburgh Penguins, that is no longer the case under new owner Tom Dundon and GM Don Waddell, a former pro scout with the Penguins.
Waddell and ownership are highly motivated to move Staal who has 5 years, $30 million in actual cash left on his contract, league sources tell Inside Pittsburgh Sports.
The Hurricanes willingness to move Staal this summer is more about the contract than anything else.
Staal who went through a lot this past season with the death of his daughter to a terminal birth defect, is loved by his teammates and a major leader in that room but the Hurricanes paying a player $6 million per season who based on his career as a No. 3 center or a No. 1 center in an elevated role is maxed out as a 20 goal, 45-50 point per season player, does not sit well with the new owner, league sources say.
As one source said of the Hurricanes looking to move Staal, “they haven’t won with him, so why keep moving forward with him” is said to be the thinking of Dundon.
The Hurricanes are open for business on Staal and while a limited market is likely because of the contract, there’s enough center starved teams out there that will entertain bringing Staal on board.
We’ll also find out if Jim Rutherford’s To read this insider news, subscribe to get “Inside Access”!
— The NHL’s coaching landscape changes every couple years and it’s been fascinating to watch how the infatuation has now centered around college coaches and this narrative that college or young AHL coaches are now regarded as being great development coaches just because they coach young players.
This narrative has veteran retread coaches with Stanley Cups on their resume seeing their stock get lower and lower around the league on trying to find a job.
For Dan Bylsma who was a disaster in Buffalo that has crushed his stock, it’s tough sledding in even drawing interest as his agent To read this insider news, subscribe to get “Inside Access”!
Bylsma is due another $5.7 million from the Sabres for the next two seasons not to coach and if he fails to land another NHL coaching job the next two years, he will have been paid almost $11 million dollars in four of six years not to coach ($2.2 million from the Penguins, $8.55 million from the Sabres).
Good work if you can get it.
Bylsma projects to be waiting a while before he gets another chance or at least even seriously considered for a job, but in an interview with the New York Post last week, Bylsma did make some valid points on why aren’t veteran coaches like Dave Tippett and himself regarded as development coaches?
“I’ve seen the talk that might mean a younger coach, a coach that could develop with the group as well,” Bylsma said to the Post. “It’s fairly common for that to be the focus. There are always coaches that are on their way up, so to speak. They are viewed as development coaches, I guess. I wouldn’t take away from Dave Tippett in that regard. We’ve seen him behind a NHL bench before. So why isn’t Dave Tippett a development coach? He’s developed players for a long time.”
It’s an interesting point.
What makes Bill Peters who has never won such a greater development coach over Michel Therrien who has been successful every where he goes and was instrumental in the Penguins young players developing the right way early on in the Sidney Crosby era and then turning around a rebuilding situation in Montreal right away?
— The Tampa Bay Lightning looked like the Tampa Bay Lightning again with a 4-2 win in Game 3 and now it’s a series. Game 4 is certainly shaping up as one of those nights that who wins Game 4, ends up winning the series.
— If the Steelers felt Dez Bryant wouldn’t be toxic towards the development of JuJu Smith-Shuster and James Washington, adding Bryant on a one year deal as the No. 3 receiver would be a win for both sides.
Bryant could rehabilitate his play/reputation on a Super Bowl contender with an elite quarterback in Ben Roethlisberger, and Bryant would give Roethlisberger, Steelers a big-time needed red-zone option.
As good as the Steelers believe James Washington will be, there’s still some uncertainty with the receiving group after Antonio Brown and Smith-Shuster.
Height of the Steelers top-3 receivers:
‘5-10, 6-1, 5-11’
For the reason stated above, though, the Steelers are not considering Bryant even as his market is said to be headed towards a one year, league minimum type contract.