TSN’s Darren Dreger reports (transcription via Chris Nichols of Today’s Slapshot) that the Sabres are going “absolutely all in” for Tampa Bay forward Steven Stamkos should he hit the market. He hears that the speculation is that they may be willing to go upwards of $12MM per season to get a deal done. For comparison, the highest current cap hits in the NHL are Chicago forwards Jonathan Toews and Patrick Kane.
Elsewhere around the NHL:
- Also from Dreger, the Blue Jackets are still listening to offers for the third overall pick in Friday’s NHL Entry Draft. He adds that GM Jarmo Kekalainen would like to attach a sizable contract, such as Scott Hartnell, who has three years left on his contract at $4.75MM per year, to any discussion to free up some cap space.
- The asking price for Pittsburgh goalie Marc-Andre Fleury is quite high. Eric Francis of the Calgary Sun reports that Pittsburgh GM Jim Rutherford is asking for the Flames’ first round pick (sixth overall) in this Friday’s draft, a price that is too steep for Calgary’s liking. Francis suggests that the Flames would amenable to dealing one of their second round picks and a prospect to secure the services of the 31 year old netminder. TSN’s Bob McKenzie suggests Tampa Bay G Ben Bishop could be another target for Calgary.
- Vancouver GM Jim Benning acknowledged that the team is still trying to figure out the situation for pending UFA defenseman Dan Hamhuis, reports Ben Kuzma of the Vancouver Province. The team would open to trading his negotiating rights but have yet to receive an offer for them.