The news that New Jersey Devils goaltender Martin Brodeur would be sitting on the bench for the second game in a row, which also happens to be the first time this has happened since 2004, has quickly been surpassed by the rumor that veteran Devils right winger Jamie Langenbrunner has been asked to waive his no-trade-clause. Not only has the 35 year-old been made a healthy scratch for tonight’s game against the Flyers, but the Star Ledger has tweeted that all of his equipment has been cleared out of his stall.
This normally wouldn’t be worth discussing on a Philadelphia sports website because, as interesting as the news is from a hockey perspective, the latest updates on the worst team in the NHL don’t typically dominate the news as much as how the Eagles are preparing for the Packers. However, Tim Panaccio of CSNPhilly is reporting that the Flyers are apparently “in” on Langenbrunner, which surprised me enough to decide to bring it up here.
The rumor is that the Dallas Stars have made an offer to the Devils, but general manager Lou Lamoriello wasn’t thrilled with the proposed return. Needing to shake up the roster and free up salary cap space, Lamoriello has made a number of other teams aware of his desire to trade their captain and the timetable to make a counter offer better than that of the Stars. The usual teams that you would expect to hear included in this list are the Toronto Maple Leafs and the Los Angeles Kings, but the Philadelphia Flyers comes as a complete surprise.
For starters, the Flyers are on top of the NHL rankings and do not have any gaping holes in the line-up in need of filling. Waiving goaltender Michael Leighton has brought them below the salary cap, but not enough to take on Langenbrunner’s $2.8 million cap hit without moving another player or two. The only players that are arguably expendable are Nikolay Zherdev ($2 million), Matt Walker ($1.7 million), Michael Leighton ($1.55 million), Jody Shelley ($1.1 million), Dan Carcillo ($1.075 million) and Andreas Nodl ($850K). Of these players, only Zherdev would really make sense .
Panaccio has stated the Flyers are offering draft picks. This is worrisome to hear, as the Phantoms are in dire need of talent and this organization has already given away enough draft picks.
It would be great if the Flyers could add another former Stanley Cup winner to their roster, but the assets they would likely have to give up to an Atlantic Division rival would be too much, all things considered. The Flyers, like every other team in the NHL, are likely running their due diligence to see what it would take.