Spector's Rumors 2-4-2004
- View SourceFEBRUARY 4, 2004.
CUJO NOT A LOCK AS RED WINGS STARTER.
DETROIT NEWS: Ted Kulfan reports Red Wings GM Ken Holland denied a
report that appeared on TSN over the weekend where he was quoted as
saying the starting goalie's role was Curtis Joseph's to lose, even
if Dominik Hasek returns healthy from his groin injury. Holland
claims TSN misterpreted his comments, where he stated a month ago
that if Hasek returned but wasn't able to play at the same level he
did two years ago that Joseph would likely keep his role as the
starting goalie for the upcoming playoffs. Holland said that role was
determined by the coaches, not by him.
DETROIT FREE PRESS: Helene St. James reports the Wings remain in the
market for "a big skilled forward" although the need is not as
serious as it was earlier in the season. St. James also believes the
Wings could still move Curtis Joseph by the trade deadline if Hasek
returns healthy and in top form by March 1.
HAS ZHAMNOV PLAYED HIS FINAL GAME FOR CHICAGO?
CHICAGO DAILY HERALD: Tim Sassone reports it's possible Alexei
Zhamnov may have played his final game as a Blackhawk in last night's
4-1 upset of the Toronto Maple Leafs. The 'Hawks don't play again
until next week in Nashville and with all the league's GMs in
attendence at this weekend's All-Star game, Sassone believes the time
is right for Zhamnov to be dealt.
THE LATEST ON THE FLYERS.
CAMDEN COURIER-POST: Chuck Gormley reports Philadelphia Flyers GM Bob
Clarke is relieved starting goalie Robert Esche sustained only a
Grade 2 sprain of the MCL in his left knee this past Monday, meaning
he'll only be out for three weeks. Clarke called up prospect goalie
Antero Niittymaki, and hopes Jeff Hackett will have fully recovered
from his positional vertigo after the All-Star break. If both are up
to the challenge of replacing Esche, Clarke won't need to make a
trade, but if both stumble Gormley suggests Clarke could be forced to
trade for either a "stop-gap" goalie like Arturs Irbe or sacrifice
youth for a veteran like Olaf Kolzig or Sean Burke.
ASSOCIATED PRESS: reported Philadelphia Flyers centre Claude Lapointe
has been cleared by the NHL to return to action after spending some
time in it's substance abuse and behavioral health program.
THE LATEST ON THE CAPITALS.
WASHINGTON POST: Jason La Canfora reports the Capitals have made it
clear they're not interested in picking up salary should they deal
away another of their star players. Topping the list of those Caps
who might be next to go is goalie Olaf Kolzig, whom La Canfora claims
the Philadelphia Flyers have scouted closely this season. Flyers GM
Bob Clarke and Capitals GM Mike McPhee have a "cordial relationship"
and have swung a major trade in the past, with the Caps shipping Adam
Oates to Philly two years ago for a package centered around goalie
Maxim Ouellet. Other teams believed interested in the Capitals top
players include "Detroit, Toronto, Ottawa, Dallas, and Los Angeles"
THE LATEST BLUES CLUES.
ST. LOUIS POST-DISPATCH: Derrick Goold reports the struggling St.
Louis Blues are lacking the depth needed to swing a trade for more
scoring depth. The Blues have fallen dramatically in the standings of
late and are in danger of falling out of the playoff race. Goold
claims the club is holding off on making any deals as they're hoping
to find improvement from within, but if they fail to improve they
might shop impending UFA players like Dallas Drake at the trade
ARE THE PANTHERS INTERESTED IN JASON SMITH?
EDMONTON SUN: Robin Brownlee reports the presence of the Florida
Panthers assistant GM Grant Sonier at three recent Oilers homegames
(coinciding with the return of team captain Jason Smith from an ankle
injury) is leading to speculation the Panthers, who are seeking a
rugged defenceman, might be interested in Smith. GM Kevin Lowe stated
he wasn't interested in trading Smith and added there are no trade
talks going on between him and the Panthers. Sonier is apparently
scouting Western Conference clubs and Edmonton happened to be one of
FLAMES TO MOVE A DEFENCEMAN?
CALGARY SUN: Todd Saelhof reports the recent callup of defenceman
Mike Commodore by the Flames means the club will be carrying eight
blueliners. Saelhof suggests GM Darryl Sutter might either send a
defenceman down to the farm or trade one to make room for Commodore
if he plays well. Denis Gauthier has been the subject of trade
rumours for months, while Steve Montador and Andrew Ference have been