Item 1 (the good news):
There are whispers that Pittsburgh GM Craig Patrick, who is expected to be fired at the end of the season, is going to wind up taking over the Bruins.
Nothing new there. But it's like addition by subtraction. Not only do you strengthen yourselves, you weaken an opponent.
Item 2 (the bad news):
There's plenty of talk the Isles are going to buy out C Alexei Yashin at the end of the season. He has $34 million (all terms US) remaining on his contract, but a buyout would be $22.5 million payable over 10 years. Ottawa fans won't like this, but a league insider predicted this week there would be a bidding war for Yashin's services. "You can't argue with his talents and I don't think you can fault him for everything that has happened on Long Island," an NHL executive said. It wouldn't surprise NHL insiders if 10-12 teams -- including Pittsburgh, San Jose, Carolina, Los Angeles, Calgary, Toronto and Vancouver -- made a pitch for Yashin if he becomes an unrestricted free agent.
If the salary floor goes up, the Pens will have to spend some money in the offseason. Let's just hope it isn't on this guy. Although if he's bought out and gets another contract in the $2-3 million range, he might be a bargain. But they don't need another center if Malkin comes over.
Item 3 (from the CP is an idiot file):
Apparently Pittsburgh C Ryan Malone was devastated when he wasn't dealt at the NHL's trade deadline. Malone, a Pittsburgh native, already had his bags packed to come to Ottawa, but the word is Patrick was insisting the Senators give Pittsburgh C Antoine Vermette and W Brandon Bochenski in return. No deal
No kidding, no deal. Why would Ottawa give both those guys for Malone? I would take Bochenski alone.
http://ottsun.canoe.ca/Sports/Hockey/20 ... 9-sun.html