Saturday, August 21, 2010

Souray for Fleischmann?

RUMOUR2009-2010 NHL Statistics2011 Cap Info
To WashingtonPositionAgeGPGAPYearsCap Hit
Sheldon SourayDefense343749132$5.4 million
To EdmontonPositionAgeGPGAPYearsCap Hit
Tomas FleischmannForward26692328511$2.7 million

Well, I saw this trade rumour in a couple of tweets (one & two) this afternoon and thought I would have a good time with this one.  The Oilers would move unhappy defenseman Sheldon Souray out of town for Tomas Fleischmann, a scoring winger who has had some longer contract negotiations with the Capitals and only seems to sign on a year-to-year basis.

Souray has been on the blog a couple of times since he had requested to be traded out of Edmonton, so it should be no surprise that he is back, since he hasn't been moved yet.  The Capitals would be an interesting fit for Souray, as they are in need of a bit more veteran scoring from their blueline, lessening the pressure on young John Carlson, who is emerging as a real blue chip prospect. 

The cap hit for Souray is a pretty big one, but with the way the Capitals are built at the moment, they could use twice the cap hit that Fleischmann would leave behind and move forward with it.  Whether or not Souray would live up to that big cap hit depends a lot on his health, as he is a player on my injury-prone list.

The Oilers, on the other hand, would be very happy to be finally rid of the Souray distraction in their office and on their books, taking on another young scoring forward like Fleischmann.  Unfortunately for the Oilers, Fleischmann is another winger, not exactly what they are after, but he could provide some more help to the centres that are already on the team, possibly making them better.

I don't think that this deal as it stands is one that can happen, there will likely have to be some padding from one side or the other to try and even it up. I would think that the Oilers would have to send a prospect or a mid-round pick to the Capitals, just so they would take that cap hit off their hands, especially for a talent like Fleischmann. The essence of the deal would be Souray for Fleischmann, but at the end of the day, there would need to be a bit more to make it real.

For now, I could see this deal being done, because of the higher prices for top-to-mid level defensemen are quite high and I don't believe the Capitals have enough in their system today to make it as far as they would like in the Eastern Conference playoffs. 

Sunday, August 15, 2010

Tampa In On Kaberle?

RUMOUR2009-2010 NHL Statistics2011 Cap Info
To TorontoPositionAgeGPGAPYearsCap Hit
Ryan MaloneForward30692126475$4.5 million
To Tampa BayPositionAgeGPGAPYearsCap Hit
Tomas KaberleDefense3282742491$4.25 million

The late name being thrown around the rumour mill on Sunday night has been Ryan Malone coming out of Tampa Bay for Tomas Kaberle and I wanted to have a look at what the numbers may pan out here for.

Of course, this wouldn't be the complete deal, I would have to think that giving up Malone would mean that the draft pick that should be involved would be low, unless the Leafs have another ace up their sleeve to upgrade the pick.

Interesting point to note, Malone's long-term deal does have a no-movement clause, which could be tough to move and why would Malone want to move away from playing on the top line with Steven Stamkos and Martin St. Louis?

The Lightning have done well in this off-season adding Simon Gagne and Domenic Moore, but trading away Malone does make me a little weary of where the forward corps are going in Tampa Bay.  I'm not sold on this idea as a way to help win games, especially with some good minute-eaters on the blueline, where does everyone fit and how do they mesh? 

Even if the Maple Leafs were able to turn this deal, who is going to service all of these gritty scorers?  Is there going to be a centre or two in the Leafs future?

Last Day for Open Kaberle

It's now the middle of August and we know a few things about the Maple Leafs situation with Tomas Kaberle. August 15th (today) is the last day that Kaberle has before his no-trade clause takes effect again and he would have to then okay a deal by waiving that clause for any new deals that may or may not surface after today. We know that Burke is not in the business of taking less than his value in any deal and he is looking for a top six forward with size and scoring ability or a "futures package," which would include a high pick and a "quality young player."

In 2010, Kaberle was the 10th ranked defenseman in scoring with 49 points in 82 games and in 2011, the final year of his deal, he will have a cap hit of $4.25 million.  Of those top 10 defensemen, Kaberle's cap hit ranks 7th, which suggests that he is a pretty good bargain for any team that decides to pick him up.

The Leafs are battling against the salary cap and have some great defensive depth on their side at the moment.  Not including buyouts or bonus penalties, the Leafs have 20 players signed on, including eight defensemen, for $56.5 million, which doesn't leave the club for very much wiggle room for immediate improvement as it is.  Tack on the extras and the Leafs are sitting at $58.9 million.  The Leafs could very easily get to a playing line-up of 20 players, possibly having an extra defenseman in the line-up for a reasonable cost, but that would force the Leafs to use some younger, cheaper talent.

For the 2011 Entry Draft, Toronto is the only team that doesn't have their 1st round pick, which is the last piece of the deal that saw Phil Kessel get dealt to the Leafs, almost a year ago now.  If we were to eliminate teams by that notion, we really couldn't, but I think it's fair to think that if the Maple Leafs are going to take a "futures package," a team's 1st round pick will be front and centre for a deal.

The teams most often pointed out in the rumours going around include the Bruins, who have Toronto's 1st round pick in 2011, the Sharks and Ducks, Pacific Division foes in need of blueline help, and the Devils and Kings, who have been dealing with the Ilya Kovalchuk situation for the better part of this Summer.  It's too bad we don't get to see what offers have been made or how the picks/players stack up in some of these deals that have been on and off the table, leaving us only to assume.

Personally, I think there is enough that adds up to Kaberle getting dealt on Sunday before midnight. The Leafs would probably prefer to have some cap flexibility, a 1st round pick and a little bit more youth in their system and they would likely prefer to get it from anyone.

Kaberle has expressed much interest in staying with the team, likely vetoing a trade after the no-trade clause falls back into place, so Burke has only so much time to make a deal.

On the other hand, the 1st round pick might be a pivot point on any deal, not settling for anything less, where the prospect that may come in return, could be downgraded just as easy, since there is a little bit more flexibility with coaching and development in their own system. I guess this is what would keep me from being surprised if Kaberle wasn't to move on Sunday, plus he would be a hard defenseman to replace, despite the Leafs depth.

Thursday, August 12, 2010

Bieksa for Chimera?

RUMOUR2009-2010 NHL Statistics2011 Cap Info
To WashingtonPositionAgeGPGAPYearsCap Hit
Kevin BieksaDefense2955319221$3.75 million
To VancouverPositionAgeGPGAPYearsCap Hit
Jason ChimeraForward31781519342$1.875 million
Draft Pick

It's been a while since I had something for the Rumour Mill blog, but a quick tweet got the wheels turning and we have some numbers to play with. It's nothing more than a rumour and should be take as just that, but I don't mind having a quick peek, see what it looks like.

The Canucks are knee deep in defensemen and cuddling up to the salary cap ceiling this Summer, so a deal to move a blueliner and get some cap space should be considered as a viable option.  Moving Bieksa to an Eastern Conference team definitely has some merit and getting a 3rd/4th line player in return makes some sense, as that was one of their weaker points in the playoffs last Spring.

For the Capitals, they are dealing with plenty of depth on the forward ranks and a bit of a shortage of offense from the blueline past Mike Green.  Bieksa would definitely solve the issue of finding a top-3 defenseman, for a reasonable cap hit, some toughness will be a value-add for the team as well.

I've definitely heard of worse rumours than this.