Yandle Eyeing Doughty and Weber?
One thing I can promise you...According to sourcs Coyotes D-man Keith Yandle will not sign before July first. He is closely watching the Drew Doughty and Shea Weber negotiations and will not be the first of the three to sign.
Does anyone even know what the Coyotes budget will be? Unfortunately for Phoenix, Yandle didn’t make enough salary last season to go the club elected arbitration route. That would prevent a team from signing Yandle to an offer sheet. Word is Phoenix is not going to keep Ed Jovanovski and they already lost their goaltender. Can they afford to lose Yandle? The obvious answer is no.
It will be interesting to see if there’s a GM out there that would offer sheet a team owned by the NHL? On the positive side, they wouldn’t have to face Phoenix’s Owner at future Board of Governors meetings.
LA is aggressively trying to get Doughty signed to a long-term deal as is Nashville with Weber. I’m told signing Weber long-term will be a challenge as he wants to see some evidence that the Predators are truly trying to win a Stanley Cup moving forward. Otherwise he’ll either wait it out until he’s a UFA or be traded elsewhere.
Yandle will likely use the rules of the CBA to his advantage and seek an offer sheet from an NHL club. For one reason or another, I’m told talks between Phoenix and Yandle have been very quiet.
The San Jose Sharks have given Jamal Mayers permission to seek offers from other teams. This is a class move by GM Doug Wilson who understands veteran players have families they need to get situated and a head start is always appreciated.
I’m told not to expect San Jose to re-sign D-man Ian White or forward Ben Eager. They are trying to re-sign Devin Setoguchi.
Ballard Headed for Waivers?
Vancouver is trying hard to sign both Kevin Bieksa and Christian Erhoff. If the Canucks can’t move Keith Ballard they will likely place him on waivers and eat the contract in the minors. Toronto has done this with Jeff Finger and the Rangers did the same with Wade Redden so it’s not like we haven’t seen this before. Vancouver can afford to eat Ballard’s deal.
Bryzgalov Will Get How Much?
Some of the numbers I’m hearing on Ilya Bryzgalov just seem outrageous to me. I will be surprised if the Flyers sign him for more than $5 million. If he wants to win he should take it.
Mystery team for Jagr?
I know the agent for Jaromir Jagr has told some folks, including myself, that Detroit, Pittsburgh, and a "mystery team is interested. Saying mystery team is an old trick that's been used by agents for years. I was told the team doesn't want it out. Should we assume Detroit and Pittsburgh do?
Montreal D-man Roman Hamrlik expects to hear from Montreal regarding another contract offer before July first.
Florida Better Get Spending…..
The Panthers will need to spend around $30 million bucks just to get to the floor. They remain in rebuild mode and may be forced to take on some bad contracts if it means they get some draft picks in the deal as well. They may not have a choice but to take on bad contracts. Maybe Florida is a possible destination for Ballard who didn’t seem to click with Canucks Head Coach Alain Vigneault. Hard to believe he was passed up by the likes of Aaron Rome, Andrew Alberts, and Chris Tanev during the finals.
Blues Looking for a D-man?
Would the Blues be willing to part with a Barret Jackman if they felt they could replace him in free agency? Jackman has been a true Blue his entire career but is entering the final year of his contract. It’s safe to assume the Blues would love to get their hands on a Bieksa if they could. He’ll be asking for a deal in the $5 million range.
The Blues will be looking to add an experienced player or two come July. Don’t be surprised to learn Rob Niedermayer is being dangled in front of teams like the Blues. His days of scoring are in the rearview mirror but he certainly adds leadership and experience.
More to come,