Ottawa still looking for a puck moving defenseman
Bryan Murray is still looking for a puck-moving defenseman for quite a while now but haven’t been successful in obtaining one. One they were after was New York Rangers Michael Del Zotto but it didn’t materialize mainly because of two factors. One, the Rangers were after players Murray was not willing to give such as Chris Neil and Marc Méthot. Second, the recent concussion to Marc Staal with the Rangers have placed Alain Vigneault in a position where he has to play Michael Del Zotto and the young defenseman has responded positively in the vote of confidence. But according to Darren Dreger in the TSN.ca – Dreger Report, Glen Sather continues to shop Del Zotto. Meanwhile Bryan Murray, according to TSN’s NHL Insiders Pierre Lebrun, wants to give a chance to young Cody Ceci who scored the overtime winner on Monday to show what he can bring in that role. Toronto has also some interest in Michael Del Zotto but again the price asked is too much for the Leafs. Dreger mentioned the fact that Jake Gardiner had two lousy games back-to-back in the Leafs losses that rumors for Gardiner will re-ignite in the new year.
Editor’s Note: Sometimes the best trades are the ones you don’t make. If Ceci responds to the role given by McLean, the Senators who are economically inclined will benefit from his play and salary cap hit, therefore Bryan Murray will be able to tackle important issues up front instead.
Calgary Flames and Buffalo Sabres General Manager Search
The Buffalo Sabres and the Calgary Flames are not near a decision or a nomination of a new general manager. While the Sabres were to take their time in the decision and nomination of a new general manager; it was reported the Flames would likely name a general manager before the Sabres do. The situation with the two teams is that for the Sabres, not much has changed and the decision will not be made until end of January early February 14. And that is not guaranteed either. Pat Lafontaine, president of Hockey Operations wants to make the right choice and he has several candidates to interview. As for the Flames, Brian Burke did seek the permission from the Dallas Stars to speak to former Calgary Flames star Joe Nieuwendyk who is still associated with the Stars and that permission was granted. According to TSN NHL Insider Trading, Bob McKenzie, there are rumors that Nieuwendyk is not ready yet to get in the general manager’s position. It is also known that Burke hasn’t asked yet anybody else permission to speak to certain candidates. So he may want to wait for the right person and this could mean naming a general manager in the off season as he stays on to finish the season as interim general manager.
Leafs nation is disarray
According to Daren Dreger from the Dreger Report, Toronto Maple Leafs general manager Dave Nonis is not pressing the panic button yet. Some of his players are not performing up to the expectations and Nonis has given head Randy Carlyle his full confidence to return things they were early in the season when the Leafs were one of the best teams in the Eastern Conference. He also reiterated the fact that he will not make a trade just to shake things up at this time. He was quoted saying to Dreger: “I know Randy and the coaching staff is working hard. I’m not now, nor have I ever contemplated making a coaching change. The players have to respond.” Meanwhile, Nonis will still be looking to improve the top six offensively.
Danny Brière trade requests denied
According to RDS.ca, insider François Gagnon, he spoke with Daniel Brière on Monday and he confirmed that the trade requests from him to Montreal Canadiens general manager Marc Bergevin that were published on many social medias during the past weekend were false. Briere stated to Gagnon in an interview that he hasn’t requested any trade from Bergevin. He admitted he wished he could play and contribute more but he is taking all this in stride like a veteran would. Brière again didn’t see much play time last night against the Phoenix Coyotes playing just over 4 minutes after he was awarded a minor penalty in the first period. Gagnon specified that Brière is not in a position to ask for a trade considering his current playtime and his current contract with the Habs.
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