The talk of the NHL right now. He's so good and mighty that many mainstream media peeps are saying the rest of the dominoes will fall (Jason Spezza) when and if he gets traded. The Ducks and Blackhawks appear to be his two spots of choice. Without doing something drastic, I can't see how the Hawks take on Kesler, as they still have to re-sign Johnny Toews and Patrick Kane to long term deals. Would Patrick Sharp even waive his no trade clause to come here in a deal? Word is "no".
From the Chicago Sun-Times:
The Ducks have the pieces and cap space to make it happen. I'm not going to quote which pieces, as all I can see out there are BS rumor sites dropping names and picks.
Having said all that, who knows if the Canucks will even trade Kesler this offseason. Maybe they hold out until sometime in the 2014-15 season. We do know from Trevor Linden that they would rather keep him. But that may not be possible given Kesler's desire to leave. They do not appear willing do back off of their "high" asking price either and I don't blame them.
This rumor has most Canucks fans kicking kittens. Apparently the Canucks are inquiring about The Rat.
The Bolland camp won't do anything with Vancouver until they resolve the Ryan Kesler situation.— News1130 Sports (@News1130Sports) June 25, 2014
This is the same Bolland who said on a Chicago radio station, in the heat of the Hawks-Canucks rivalry (2011):
"Well, they'll (Sedins) never become Hawks," he said. "I don't think we'd let them on our team. We'd be sure not to let them on our team. And, yeah, they probably still would be sisters. I think they might sleep in bunk beds. The older one has the bottom one, the younger one got the top."
"I hate all of them."
"There's a lot of weirdos there," he said. "You don't want to be out there too long."
I know, I shouldn't laugh. But Bolland did recant those statements later on.
More importantly than what Bolland has said in the past are his contract demands and games played. Yes, he would make a solid 2nd line center on the Canucks and I sure as hell do like his game. However, the 28 year-old is about to become a free agent after making $3,375,000 per season over the past several years. I'd say that's not too bad of a salary, except in the past 4 years he has played (in reverse chronological order): 23, 35, 76 and 61 games respectively. In those 195 games he scored 49 goals and 100 points. He is still recovering from an ankle injury (sliced Achille's tendon that occurred early last season against the Canucks of all teams (Zack Kassian). That recovery is going well.
Prior to the injury, Leafs coach Randy Carlyle was praising Bolland:
"He does every drill at the highest possible speed. He practices like a pro. He's trying to make himself better every day. Some of our young players could take notice of that and we've talked to them about it. Just to take notice of how he approaches practice and how intense he is and the level of commitment he puts in."
A big, fast, gritty and skilled player. Worth a look.
Ok, so that vid probably made you hate him more..
Sources tell me, Miller would have no issues playing in Vancouver.— News1130 Sports (@News1130Sports) June 25, 2014
News1130 must have excellent sources. This rumor causes a stink in Vancouver as well because if it is true, it tells you what management thinks about heading into the 2014-15 season with the Eddie Lack and Jacob Markstrom duo: They don't want to. They don't think Lack is ready to be a starter. Is that really all that far off of a judgement call? I saw enough after Roberto Luongo was traded. Lack needed a lot of work. I was and still am thinking it would be great to give Eddie a less of big-named mentor, because you know Miller wants to be the #1 at all times and won't be happy playing second fiddle.
Could this mean that Lack could be part of a trade as well if the Canucks land Miller? Can we not go through a season without a goaltender controversy, please? Sometimes, "controversies" are good in the crease, but I really don't see Miller splitting duties here. I don't see Lack being happy playing 20 games either. But if he's not ready, he's not ready. At the same time, I'm sure Miller will want a long term deal so....
Miller is testing the free agent market July 1. He made $6,250,000 last season.
There's always a little thing called the salary cap. The Canucks made qualifying offers to Chris Tanev and Zack Kassian but have decided to let Jordan Schroeder and Zac Dalpe go. As of right now, Vancouver has $16 million in cap space available and have 9 forwards, 6 defencemen and 2 goaltenders signed.
BAH! Who knows what's going to happen? No shortage of writing material, that's for sure!