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Dreger's Mailbag: Trade talks at the GM meetings?

Darren Dreger
6/1/2012 1:04:02 PM
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Got a question on the latest news and rumours? E-mail Hockey Insider Darren Dreger and he'll answer your emails at dregereport@tsn.ca!

Hi Darren,
 
With all the speculation as to who will be the next head coach for certain teams, I was wondering how the interview process works with general managers and what types of questions they ask their candidates.  Obviously, every team has their own methods and how their team operates but it would be kind of interesting as to how the whole process works as to how each team picks 'their guy.'
 
Cheers,
Travis
 
A:  Travis, teams and general managers handle the hiring process differently. For example, the relationship that Brian Burke has with Randy Carlyle, coupled with the success they shared in winning a Stanley Cup in Anaheim, made it very easy for the Maple Leafs to make a coaching change with very little interviewing necessary. By comparison, Marc Bergevin and the Montreal Canadiens continue to work through an exhaustive process in an effort to determine their best candidate. Speculation suggests Michel Therrien will get the job and if he does, it will conclude a series of no fewer than four interviews. Bergevin, Rick Dudley and Larry Carriere have all been involved, while other teams will include ownership in the process as well. Management and coaching hires are obviously very important and greatly influence the direction of the organization, while sought-after head coaches can command big money contracts ($1 million-$2 million per year), so financially, it's also important to make these decisions based on thorough research.
 
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Darren,
 
You went to the GM meetings on Wednesday - any word on whether trade talks have picked up? Are there any names being bandied about?
 
Jordan Landon 

A: Jordan, yes I would say trade talks have picked up, although it's still relatively early.  We (media) like to focus on the big names such as Roberto Luongo or Jordan Staal, but moving players of this magnitude is a complicated business. Canucks GM Mike Gillis says teams are calling on Luongo, but he hasn't engaged in any "real" trade discussions. Gillis says he will map out a plan after next weeks scouting meetings and work forward from there. It's quite possible Luongo remains in Vancouver next season, although with Schneider ready and eager to take over the starter's role, it's believed Luongo would prefer a fresh start elsewhere. As for Staal, Pittsburgh will try and re-sign him, but if they can't come to terms, Pens GM Ray Shero will have to consider trading him. There will be many teams keenly interested in acquiring Staal who is a very versatile player. I'm sure there are many players in play as we approach the NHL Draft, so expect TSN's coverage on June 22 and the days leading up to it to be filled with trade speculation.

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Darren,
 
How long were you stuck in that elevator in Game 1? LOL!
 
Did you see Helene Elliott's photo of Gary Bettman and Donald Fehr cozying up together after their media discussions yesterday? Quite funny! It's anyone's guess how the CBA talks will go, but have you gotten any feelings about it from players and league executives this week?
 
Colin Hammond
Toronto
 
A: Colin - We were stuck in the elevator for aproximately 10-15 minutes. A tad alarming, but far from an emergency. Worth a few tweets and a couple of laughs, but not that big of a deal.

It's a good sign both Bettman and Fehr are ready to engage in CBA negotiations. Discussions will commence in late June, but don't expect any significant progress until late in the summer. Hammering out the revenue split between the players and the owners will be among the top contentious issues and one of the primary reasons some in the hockey community are predicting a work stoppage. Neither Bettman nor Fehr are willing to consider the possibility of next season being in peril, but both sides have lists of changes they intend to fight for. Let's hope the 'fight' starts early and a compromise is met before September, otherwise a shortened season will become a very real possibility. 

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Hey Dregs,
 
Glen Sather said Wednesday that he, "would like to have a 60-goal scorer, a defenceman that could play 25 minutes and get 25 goals and a goaltender that could be under one goal-against per game."
 
Okay seriously, what is he looking for this summer?
 
Leah Hawson
 
A: Hi Leah -  Sather needs a top line winger and a top four defenceman. Assuming Devils captain Zach Parise opts to test the free agent market, you can be sure the Rangers will be among the contending teams aggressively in the bidding. As for a D-man, New York is looking at many options. If Ryan Suter stays in Nashville, it's conceivable Shea Weber may be made available. The Rangers, like most teams, would pay a premium to acquire Weber. New York will also show considerable interest in Justin Schultz, who is a hot commodity coming out of college.
 
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Mr. Dreger,
 
Regarding pending UFA Justin Schultz - is his first contract still constrained by the rules governing entry-level contracts or is all of that moot in his case?
 
Thank you,
Chris (Atlanta)

A:  Chris, as I touched on in answering Leah's question, Justin Schultz is a quality prospect and every GM we've spoken to believes he's a "can't miss" prospect. When he signs his first NHL contract, it will include two years of standard entry-level restrictions. Bob McKenzie talked about Schultz's future Thursday in our Insider Trading segment and suggested the Ducks could trade his rights prior to July 1.

Got a question on the latest news and rumours? E-mail Hockey Insider Darren Dreger and he'll answer your emails at dregereport@tsn.ca!

Darren Dreger

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