A variety of discussion points to kick off the weekend including the imminent departure of Justin Pogge and the Marlies goaltending situation going into next season. Is it finally James Reimer’s time to shine? Also, a quick look at the latest flurry of moves made by the Boston Bruins, and how that may affect a potential Leaf trade for the still unsigned Phil Kessel.
- After re-signing restricted free agent goaltender Justin Pogge, it appears that the Leafs will now turn their attention to moving the team’s former goalie of the future. The potential return is expected to be a draft pick. It may make sense to call up the Dallas Stars or Colorado Avalanche to gauge their interest, having lost out on Swedish free agent Jonas Gustavsson. James Reimer, the Kelly Cup MVP of the ECHL, will likely be the Marlies’ full-time goaltender next season. The Leafs brought in Windsor Spifires goaltender Andrew Engelage to the prospects camp earlier this summer, so it’s possible that the offer him a contract to back up Reimer.
- The Boston Bruins have had a busy last couple of days, shipping out defenseman Aaron Ward to the Hurricanes in exchange for Patrick Eaves, who they promptly bought out. Late last night, it was confirmed that they had signed free agent defenseman Derek Morris to a 1 year, $3.3M contract. The 30 year old has consistently been one of the league’s more reliable #3-4 defensemen, averaging 20 minutes/night over his career.
- This acquisition will likely signal the end of the Bruins’ interest in Tomas Kaberle, but it has still not resolved the Phil Kessel issue, with the young star remaining unsigned with very little cap space to play with. There is a growing belief that they may choose to dangle winger Chuck Kobasew’s $2.3M salary in an effort to clear some cap. Bruins GM Peter Chiarelli has continually stated that the priority is to re-sign Kessel, and they will move other pieces in order to accomodate the salary.
- Andy Strickland reports that the St. Louis Blues are looking to shore up their defense with a depth acquisition, likely a top 4 defenseman if the price is right, or more likely a reliable bottom pairing defender. Toronto could potentially entice them with Mike Van Ryn or Jonas Frogren in exchange for a draft pick, but it’s believed that the Blues would prefer to ship out Cam Janssen or D.J. King as part of any package.