Self professed Phil Kessel hater Kevin Paul Dupont aka "KDP" is all giddy with the prospects of Kessel going to the Maple Leafs. I don't understand why the Boston Globe keeps this clown on their staff because he is half the writer Minnesota Wild beat writer Michael Russo is. Come on KDP It's called professionalism and he is letting his bias get in the way of a good story. I don't understand Dupont's angle other than Phil being the shy type must have not give him the interview he wanted one time and since then has had a burr in is saddle for this kid.
What is going to happen next season when Lucic and Savard start negotiating for their next contracts; both are good players that are going to want good money to stay in Boston, who is going to be KDP's whipping boy next? Check some of the crap that he says in this article. Just for the record this is not like the Dany Heatly situation, Heatly had a contract and decided he didn't want to play for the Senators anymore, Kessel was given one contract offer and told to take it or leave it, or at least this is what I have gleamed from reading this on going mess. So it looks like Kessel could be playing with former Fighting Sioux hockey player Jason Blake who was the Leafs top scorer last season.
Just hours before the Bruins skated yesterday at the Garden for their first bona fide training camp workout, the ever-active rumor mill in Toronto had the Maple Leafs tabling the best offer yet for Boston free agent Phil Kessel. To wit: for a pair of first-round picks and one second-round pick, Boston general manager Peter Chiarelli could be free at last from his summer '09 migraine, and the 21-year-old Kessel could call southern Ontario home.
Partially true,'' said one source familiar with the talks between the teams, which have been going on for more than two weeks. "Toronto also wants a third-rounder along with Kessel.''
Meanwhile, Kessel's agent, Wade Arnott, attended the Leafs' workout in Toronto. No, he did not have Kessel at his elbow, wearing a raincoat, skimmer, and sunglasses. But Arnott was spotted talking to GM Brian Burke's top lieutenant, Dave Nonis, who now has the charge of handling the trade talks with Chiarelli.
For the moment, and possibly well on into November, Kessel holds the cards as a restricted free agent. If Chiarelli were to make a deal with, say, the Predators, Nashville GM David Poile would only give up assets if he is assured Kessel will sign in Tune Town. Likewise, the Leafs won't flip picks and/or players Boston's way unless Chiarelli already has inked Kessel to a sign-and-trade.
All signs point to Kessel preferring the Leafs over the Predators, which, if nothing else, proves he did learn something during his year at the University of Minnesota. Decent team, the Preds, but there is only one Toronto (unless Jim Balsillie succeeds in divvying up the hockey mecca).
The dynamic of the Kessel proceedings will shift as late November approaches because Kessel, per the collective bargaining agreement, cannot play in the NHL this season unless he has signed a deal by Dec. 1. But with Toronto so aggressively in the hunt, it's doubtful it will play out that long. Clearly, Burke is trying to consummate a deal rather than extend Kessel an offer sheet, which had to be the context of the discussions between Chiarelli and Burke when they were spotted across from the Garden at The Four's two weeks ago, according to a source inside the Canal St. eatery.
Asked yesterday if he cared to comment on the Kessel situation, Chiarelli said via email, "No, but thanks for asking.''
Burke, reached via phone in Toronto last night, said, "The Maple Leafs cordially decline your request.''
Everyone is just too polite for words, which makes your faithful scribe think the whole thing could get Bob Probert nasty in short order.
Chiarelli has what Burke wants, and Kessel's agent already has informed the Bruins that he is done negotiating with the Spoked-B franchise. Both Kessel and Arnott have shot down that impasse, which was reported here first last week, but that's only because they don't want Kessel's reputation in Boston to morph into what Dany Heatley's became in Ottawa when he requested out over the summer (a wish that was granted Saturday when Heatley was dished to the Sharks)
[read the rest of the article here]
This is the statement that I think is interesting and is a complete head scratcher. I would like to ask the Bruin's management if they are on drugs? My next question is going to be; where the 25-45 goals are going to come from? Who is going to pick up the slack? I keep hearing Marco Sturm and Patrice Bergeron. Only one player was close to scoring 36 goals last season and that was Michael Ryder with 27, Sturm who is 10 years older than Phil has never scored more than 28 goals in a season and that was during the 2002-2003 season. Patrice Bergeron has had two concussions in the past two season and is a check away from ending his hockey career and has only played 82 games in a season once and that was during the 2005-2006 season.
In the Boston front office, they've spent months warming to the idea that they can win without Kessel, and they are probably right, given that they have the Norris Trophy winner in Zdeno Chara and the Vezina Trophy winner in Tim Thomas. In the Boston cookbook, most of its tasty concoctions based on defensive ingredients, Kessel is viewed as that little sprig of parsley that makes the plate look better but really doesn't factor into whether the meal is a true success.
[props to Richard of the Illegal Curve] Cross posted at Goon's World.