Rumors II: Staal, Sekera, Green, Stars and Scouting Stars-Preds
  • Mike Halford of Pro Hockey Talk: Hurricanes GM Ron Francis on Sportsnet 590.

    “I think people are always trying to throw things out there and stir things up. That’s the way it is in today’s world,” Francis said on Sportsnet Fan 590. “I mean, you throw things on Twitter, it gets a lot of hits, everybody makes money, everybody is happy.”

    On Eric Staal.

    Doug MacLean: These guys are hard to find in the NHL. There’s a handful of them in the league. And then we keep hearing Eric Staal’s on the block. Come on, that’s B.S., right?

    Francis: Absolutely.

    On Andrej Sekera.

    “He would be a guy that we would look to re-sign and keep here,” Francis explained. “He’s been real good for us.

    “ the kind of guy you want to be a part of your organization going forward. So hopefully that’s something we can do.”

  • Craig Custance of ESPN: Capitals GM Brian MacLellan on getting calls about Mike Green.

    “I’ve had a few,” MacLellan said. “He’s a legitimate first-power-play, right-shot that can make plays and shoot the puck. Who wouldn’t want one?”

    MacLellan on what he’s telling teams.

    “We’re good where we’re at right now. I like our defense, but I’d never say no to a deal where I thought we were improving the team,” MacLellan said. “I think we’re playing it out to see if it’s going to work for him and for us. So far it’s been good for both.”

  • Mike Heika of the Dallas Morning News: (mailbag) Heika on ‘patience’, ‘win-now team’, and the Stars current defense core that lacks a ‘difference-maker’

    I think the key to the question is “win now.” If you realize that this is only the start of Year 2 of the rebuild, then you adjust your goals. I believe every coach and player wants to win every game, and fans do, as well. So you try to win. But, in the big picture, you could have your forward group in great shape (assuming Spezza signs an extension) and then have somewhere near $20 million to address the defense in the summer. Could that help get you Brent Seabrook from Chicago (he will be entering the final year of his contract and the Blackhawks have to account for $8 million is raises for Kane and Toews)? You would have to trade players to get Seabrook, so would playing Oleksiak and Jokipakka (or even Klingberg later in the season) give you information on whether or not you want to include them in a deal? That’s what I think Jim Nill is going through. He’s assessing the kids, and he’s monitoring the trade market. If a big deal presents itself, he wants to be prepared. Now, because he has added contracts and because the team is close to the cap, those deals would be more difficult to pull of this year, and that’s why I think the best plan is to be prepared and wait for the summer. Jim Nill could surprise us, but that’s how I see the defense right now. And if he fixes the defense in the summer and keeps the forwards intact, then are you happy with this team heading into Year 3 of the rebuild?

  • Mike Heika: Scouting the Stars-Predators: Canadiens, Flyers, Senators, Hurricanes, Blue Jackets, Blackhawks, Blues, Lightning, Maple Leafs and the Penguins.