MARCH 2, 2004.
THE GONCHAR TRADE WATCH.
TORONTO SUN: Lance Hornby reports the possibility of the Colorado
Avalanche having interest in Washington Capitals defenceman Sergei
Gonchar could place the Leafs supposed attempts to land him in
jeopardy. Apparently the Avs are willing to part with defenceman
Derek Morris, who would be of more value to the Caps than Leafs
prospect Carlo Colaiacovo. Hornby also noted if reports were true of
the Avalanche also trying to land goalie Olaf Kolzig in the deal,
there's no way the Leafs could compete against the Avs unless they
offered up promising youngsters like Matt Stajan, Alexander Steen and
Maxim Kondratiev, which GM John Ferguson Jr is apparently unwilling
to do. The Leafs might switch their attention to the Rangers Brian
Leetch, although they'd have competition for his services from the
WASHINGTON TIME: David Elfin reports Capitals GM George McPhee is
getting offers from Toronto, New Jersey, Dallas, Boston, Vancouver,
Nashville and Colorado for Gonchar, Olaf Kolzig and Brendan Witt.
Thus far there's no indication a deal could be in the works.
LACK OF OFFENCE HURTING AVS.
DENVER POST: Adrian Dater reported on the Colorado Avalanche's loss
last night to the Tampa Bay Lightning, noting that the team's poor
offensive play of late, not it's goaltending or defensive game, has
been a major reason why the team has gone 0-4-2-1 in it's last seven
home games. The Avs generated only 16 shots on Lightning goalie
Nikolai Khabibulin last night. Swirling trade rumours and bickering
coaches have put the players on edge, claims Dater, who points to the
low offensive production of Paul Kariya and Teemu Selanne as key to
the Avs overall poor offence.
ISLANDERS INTERESTED IN PRONGER, SATAN?
NEWSDAY: Alan Hahn reports the St. Louis Blues are apparently
listening to offers for all-star defenceman Chris Pronger in hopes of
paring down their payroll. Hahn claims the NY Islanders are one of
the clubs interested in Pronger, although it would be unlike the
Isles to deal for a player who's slated for unrestricted free agency
next summer. They may also be interested in Buffalo Sabres forward
Miroslav Satan. Isles GM Mike Milbury is believed shopping for
blueline help and may also have interest in "Washington's Brendan
Witt and Anaheim's Vitali Vishnevsky."
BLUES DENY PRONGER RUMOURS.
ST. LOUIS POST-DISPATCH: Derrick Goold reports several sources claim
rumours out of Toronto that the Blues are shopping Chris Pronger
are "utter nonsense". Blues GM Larry Pleau refused to comment but
it's believed he's interested in re-signing Pronger to a new long-
term contract after this season.
SABRES TO SHOP PROSPECTS FOR BLUELINE HELP?
BUFFALO NEWS: Tim Graham reported yesterday Sabres GM Darcy Regier
hinted he might consider shopping one of his young prospect forwards
before the trade deadline in hopes of bringing in some blueline help.