How active the Sabres will be?
– Even if the Buffalo Sabres are deemed to be excluded of the post-season, look for newly appointed general manager Tim Murray to be active on the trade market. Being the worst team in the NHL obviously means the team will be likely a seller by the trade deadline on 5 March 2014. In fact they are expected to be the busiest according to many.
The Buffalo Sabres have veteran they could offer as rental players. They have veterans such as: Ryan Miller who could help a team like St-Louis, Steve Ott who could help the Bruins or the Toronto Maple Leafs, or a Matt Moulson who would complete a line with Jaromir Jagr and Travis Zajac in New Jersey. According to Murray, he says “Not so fast!” He has even told his veterans not to buy into this hype too easily. Murray told the Buffalo News: “I told them not to believe everything they read or everything they’ve heard on the sports channels. But certainly their names are in play and we’ll see what happens but it doesn’t guarantee they’ll be moved at all.”
“For me, it’s all about return. These are good players. So if the return was up to a certain point and not great and we then decide we want to talk to them about staying, then that’s an option too.”
The Sabres, who have many upcoming rich picks in store for the next two entry drafts, have nine picks over the first two rounds of the next two drafts. Buffalo also selected two players in the first round of both the 2012 and 2013 drafts.
Devils looking to add offensive punch
The New Jersey Devils are playing some more inspired hockey these days and are just a point out of a wild-card playoff spot. In order to get over that hump they will be looking for more offensive likely be looking for more offensive punch on their top-six forwards by adding a scoring winger.
Jaromir Jagr who’s having his best season since returning to the NHL with 16 goals and 26 assists for 42 points has been the shining light for the Devils but head coach Peter Deboer would like to add a scoring winger on the Travis Zajac’s line.
This weekend, Deboer declared: “It’s critical for us. We really like the chemistry on three of the four lines right now. And I like Zajac and Jagr together. We have to find a piece with them. We’ve tried some different guys. Josefson will get a chance tomorrow. We’ll keep trying.”
Philadelphia is looking to unload veterans too.
In the same wave as the Buffalo Sabres, the Philadelphia Flyers who are having a see-saw season, have lost seven of its last nine. Missing the postseason for a second straight season isn’t something the organization would swallow easily – for both competitive and financial reasons. According to the Philadelphia Inquirer, they wonder if the team will be able to secure a playoff spot in the Metropolitan Division. If they don’t, a sell-off may be on the horizon. The Olympic break may be a time for general manager Paul Holmgren to a final evaluation of which players he will keep and who will leave. This may the time too for the decision to be made on being a buyer or a seller. The Boston Globe goes as far as proposing a trade that would send Flyers defenseman Andrej Meszaros to the Bruins to replace Dennis Seidenberg injured for the remainder of the season.
Diaz not in Habs long term plans.
According to Pat Hickey from the Montreal Gazette, he is positive that Montreal Canadiens puck moving defenseman Rafael Diaz’s “days are numbered” with the team. Diaz, who turned 28 this month, earns $1.225 million, which is modest by National Hockey League standards. The Swiss defenseman has been scratched four games in a row and the play of young prospect Nathan Beaulieu is pushing Diaz further from the Habs roster. He is set to become an unrestricted free agent at the end of the season. He describes the upcoming arrival of Beaulieu and the play of defensemen AHL’s prospects Jarred Tinordi and Greg Pateryn as potential replacements for next year. Hickey explains that this is becoming also a business decision with regards to salaries next year since Marc Bergevin will need to retain and sign PK Subban and potentially Andrei Markov to higher salaries.
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