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Sunday, February 05, 2006

Rumours and Updates: 2/5

RUMOURS:

Salei the Next Available Duck-
posted 2/5, 5:00 pm et
Brian Burke is looking to make a serious playoff push. The final third of the season will be very important for the Anaheim Mighty Ducks, currently sitting 4 points back of the Colorado Avalanche for the final playoff spot in the West, with two games in hand. GM Brian Burke is looking to make a few adjustments to his roster by deadline time in an attempt to string together a very winning final third of the season. It appears Burke is looking to move out defense to spark some offense. Keith Carney's name has been mentioned over the past few weeks, and NTR is learning that so too is Ruslan Salei. The Toronto Maple Leafs have been a possible destination for either Carney or Salei, as GM John Ferguson has been searching for defense over the past few weeks. There are reports of interest in Jason Allison out of Anaheim, a player mentioned consistently in trade rumours over the past month or so. The Vancouver Canucks are looking to shore up their defense, and may do so with the acquisition of either of the two. The Buffalo Sabres may be interested in adding some defensive depth as they make their first plunge into the post-season since 2001.

UPDATES:


On: The Brendan Witt Situation- posted at 2/5, 12:00 pm et
Brendan Witt is still expecting the trade he had requested at the beginning of the year. It is very likely he wants to be on a winning team for a change and try to earn himself his first Stanley Cup ring. Witt, who has played for the Washington Capitals his entire 10 year NHL career, has named the Leafs as a team he would be interested in going to. John Ferguson's Toronto Maple Leafs have been interested in the service of Brendan Witt for a few years now. NTR is also learning that there is great interest out of
Vancouver
. GM Dave Nonis has let it be known he is seeking some defensive depth, especially with Ed Jovanovski's current injury situation. Vancouver is currently 3rd in the West, and may be the more attractive option for a player looking for a Stanley Cup. It is expected the trade will occur on deadline day.

On: USA's Taxi Squad
Kevin Gibson is reporting that Ryan Miller , Buffalo Sabres rookie goaltender, will not travel to Turino, Italy with Team USA, despite being named to the taxi squad yesterday.

On: San Jose's Goaltending Situation
As reported first here on NTR, other sources are beginning to pick up the Vesa Toskala rumour. Possible destinations remain the Edmonton Oilers and the Vancouver Canucks as we listed earlier here, and the Leafs are not a possibility. Ed Belfour's huge step-up in play over the course of the past 3 games have negated all trade possibilities. Toskala will likely not go until the March 9 deadline.

MORE RUMOURS:

Joseph Leaving the Desert?

With Wayne Gretzky's Coyotes' playoff hopes disintegrating, GM Mike Barnett may shop goaltender Curtis Joseph. Joseph would be a very attractive option for any playoff team looking to add some goaltending depth, as his salary is a mere 950K. Possible destinations for Joseph include both Vancouver and Edmonton, so don't be too surprised if Vancouver gets one of Toskala or Joseph, and Edmonton gets the other, or vice versa.

INTERESTING BITS:


Taxi Squad isn't exactly what the name suggests
Hockey Canada president Bob Nicholson has announced that despite Eric Staal, Jason Spezza, and a TBD player being labelled as "taxi squad players," it is no less likely that they will play. The team can choose who they want out of the whole 26, not just the 23 players. This means that Bryan McCabe may not necessarily play, even if he is named to the 23-man roster. Al Strachan has noted that Todd Bertuzzi's goofiness and increase of penalty minutes as of late may give Eric Staal or Jason Spezza a chance to play on the 23-man roster. However, the 23 cannot be altered gamely, unless of course there is an injury, and at least in my opinion, they wouldn't deny Bertuzzi of a chance to play.
nhltraderumours.com- your best source for NHL trade rumours.

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