The Edmonton Oilers are expected to be among the busiest teams leading up to this year’s trade deadline. Bruce Garrioch of The Ottawa Sun expects the Oilers to move wingers Ales Hemsky and Ryan Jones along with defensemen Nick Schultz and Corey Potter.
Sam Gagner’s name has resurfaced in the rumor mill. Appearing on NHL Live, TSN’s Darren Dreger claims the Los Angeles Kings were interested in the 24-year-old Oilers center. Dreger suggests Gagner’s contract, with two years remaining at an annual cap hit of $4.8 million, could be a difficult fit for the cap-strapped Kings.
CBC’s Elliotte Friedman, in an interview with Sportsnet radio, claims there are “moving pieces” involved, among them the Oilers’ willingness to absorb part of Gagner’s remaining contract.
This season is also the Oilers’ best chance to move Gagner wherever they choose before his no-trade clause goes into effect this summer. The Kings currently have $1.45 million in cap space, meaning they’ll still have to move salary to acquire Gagner even if the Oilers agreed to pick up half of his salary.
The Oilers have also sought a top-two defenseman throughout this season. The Boston Globe’s Fluto Shinzawa wonders if Philadelphia Flyers blueliner Luke Schenn is a worthwhile option. Schenn has struggled with the Flyers and Shinzawa suggests the 24-year-old could improve with better coaching.
If the Oilers came calling about Schenn the Flyers might listen, but he wouldn’t address the Oilers immediate need for a top-two blueliner.
MOULSON MOVING LATER THAN SOONER
Don’t expect Buffalo Sabres left winger Matt Moulson to be dealt before the Olympic roster freeze goes into effect this Friday. Moulson was sidelined by an upper body injury last week and isn’t expected to return until after the upcoming Olympic break.
Even if Moulson were healthy, it’s unlikely Sabres GM Tim Murray would trade him this week. Murray intends to hang onto Moulson and his fellow UFAs Ryan Miller and Steve Ott until closer to the March 5 deadline in hopes of driving up their trade value.
The Los Angeles Kings, Pittsburgh Penguins, New Jersey Devils, Ottawa Senators and Vancouver Canucks have been linked to Moulson in recent speculation. Expect them to keep a close eye on the 30-year-old left winger when he returns to action later this month.
IS CAMMALLERI A FIT WITH NEW JERSEY?
Calgary Flames left winger Mike Cammalleri recently returned to the lineup after missing nine games to concussion. The 31-year-old is a hot commodity in the trade market.
The Bergen Record’s Tom Gulitti reports the New Jersey Devils’ need for a first line left winger has GM Lou Lamoriello apparently interested in Cammalleri. Gulitti claims the rebuilding Flames seek a return of draft picks and/or prospects.
Flames acting GM and president Brian Burke has stated he’ll wait until after the Olympic break to make any major moves, believing the 10-day gap between the end of the Olympic break and the March trade deadline will drive up the trade value of players like Cammalleri.
Even if Burke were willing to trade Cammalleri this week, interested clubs could prefer to wait and ensure he’s not suffering lingering effects from his concussion.
Rumor Roundup appears weekdays only on thehockeynews.com. Lyle Richardson has been an NHL commentator since 1998 on his website, spectorshockey.net, and is a contributing writer for Eishockey News and The Guardian (P.E.I.).
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