The St. Louis Blues are willing to trade Kevin Shattenkirk. They’re even willing to sign him for eight years and then trade him, to facilitate another team acquiring the offensive defenseman.
Unfortunately for the Blues, no teams have shown interest in a sign and trade. ESPN’s Pierre LeBrun reports that fear of a flat-cap has lead to any inquiring teams to ask about Shattenkirk as a pure rental. So many teams are already tight to the salary cap, LeBrun writes, that signing Shattenkirk to $7MM annually would be too big of a commitment before the exact cap is known. While he will still get big money should he make it to free agency, that would be in July once teams know “the exact salary-cap figure they’re dealing with before splurging on him.”
LeBrun believes that the Rangers and Bruins have already reached out to the Blues, and that spending assets to acquire a rental like Shattenkirk isn’t in the cards for building teams like the Oilers and Maple Leafs. Blues GM Doug Armstrong will be patient until the trade offers improve before making a decision.
- Penguins GM Jim Rutherford is on the record as saying having two legitimate starting goaltenders in Matt Murray and Marc-Andre Fleury “doesn’t work ideally.” Despite this, Rutherford told the Pittsburgh Tribune’s Jonathan Bombulie that his “preference is to keep both these goalies here this year.” While it’s understandable to want goaltending depth (they used three goaltenders in last year’s playoffs), the 32-year-old Fleury is clearly the backup now. Rutherford said he will listen to Fleury, and if the veteran wants to be moved now as opposed to the summer, then the GM will do whatever he can to do the right thing for the Penguins’ all-time winningest goaltender. It’ll be interesting to see how the Penguins handle the situation; more than two-thirds of the NHL doesn’t have the cap space to take on Fleury without sending salary back. Cap restraints are one of the biggest reasons we have yet to see any big moves this season.
- Sportsnet’s Elliotte Friedman appeared on Sportsnet 960 in Calgary on Friday morning, and discussed a possible trade request out of Nashville. Chris Nichols of FanRagSports quoted Friedman as saying Mike Ribeiro may have asked for a trade from the Predators. Friedman couldn’t say for sure, but did say it wouldn’t surprise him because Ribeiro isn’t in the lineup every night nor is he playing a marquee role. Ribeiro has four goals and 25 points in 46 games so far this season. He had 62 and 50 points in his first two seasons in Nashville.