Evander Kane’s most recent legal woes has led to speculation Buffalo could look to move the talented yet troubled forward. One potential suitor might be the Vancouver Canucks, who are thought to be interested in adding a scoring line winger. Kane of course is a B.C. native and played his junior hockey as a member of the Vancouver Giants of the WHL. Along those lines, Ben Kuzma of the Vancouver Sun makes the case the Canucks need a player of Kane’s ilk and should pursue a trade. Meanwhile, Jason Botchford, writing for The Province, takes the opposite position and lists five reasons the club should avoid Kane.
It’s hard to imagine Buffalo being able to find a trade partner at this point, at least until Kane’s legal issues are resolved. For one, the NHL is monitoring the situation and while they say they aren’t considering punishment for Kane, the possibility of such can’t be dismissed pending the results of the criminal proceedings. Second, at this point in the summer most clubs are capped out, making a move to acquire Kane and his $5.25MM cap charge difficult to complete.
More notes emanating around the NHL…..
- After finishing dead last in the league in both save percentage and goals against average, the Calgary Flames completely turned over their goaltending position, dealing for Brian Elliott at the Entry Draft and signing Chad Johnson as a free agent. The duo replaces the combination of Karri Ramo, Joni Ortio, Niklas Backstrom and Jonas Hiller between the pipes for the Flames. Elliott, the presumptive starter, was introduced to the Calgary media Wednesday and wasted little time endearing himself to the followers of his new team.
- The recent signing of RFA Petr Mrazek has pushed the Red Wings to a figure almost $5MM over the 2016-17 salary cap ceiling. As my colleague, Nate Brown, wrote earlier this morning, the concern is that GM Ken Holland has invested too much of his resources in role players and/or rewarding his own to exorbitant contract extensions. While the concern may be warranted, the Red Wings immediate issue is becoming cap compliant ahead of the start of the upcoming campaign. But as MLive’s Brendan Savage writes, the Wings will likely place veteran forwards Johan Franzen ($3.95MM cap hit) and Joe Vitale ($1.12MM cap charge) on LTIR, thus freeing up just more than $5MM in space and bringing the Red Wings into compliance.
- The New York Rangers have come to terms with their lone remaining RFA, agreeing to a new contract with F Marek Hrivik, per the club’s website. According to Larry Brooks of the New York Post, Hrivik received a two-way deal which will pay him $600K at the NHL level. Hrivik will go to camp and have an opportunity to compete for one of the final forward spots for the Rangers, though it’s likely he will again spend most of the year in the minors. Last season Hrivik saw action in five NHL games, picking up his first career point. In 68 AHL contests with Hartford, Hrivik netted a career-high 41 points and 29 assists.
- Former first-round pick Brandon Gormley has agreed to join the New Jersey Devils on a one-year contract worth $650K at the NHL level. Gormley, selected 13th overall in 2010 by Arizona, spent last season as a member of the Colorado Avalanche organization following a September trade. In 26 NHL games this past season, Gormley notched a single assist and recorded eight PIMs. Gormley looked to have a bright professional future after an accomplished junior career. He played for a QMJHL championship club with Moncton in 2010 and won a Memorial Cup as a member of Shawinigan in 2012. He has yet to translate his amateur success into a regular role in the NHL and looks to be earmarked for depth duty in the Devils organization.