Senators, Leafs attack Sharks for goalie help

BRUCE GARRIOCH -- Ottawa Sun

, Last Updated: 12:52 PM ET

VANCOUVER -- A pair of provincial rivals were circling the Sharks yesterday.

League sources told the Sun yesterday the Senators and Maple Leafs were both looking for goaltending help from San Jose.

Senators GM John Muckler was targeting Vesa Toskala from the Sharks, while the Leafs made a pitch for veteran Evgeni Nabokov.

Sources say the Sharks were offered winger Martin Havlat from the Senators, but were concerned about the Slovak becoming an unrestricted free agent after next season.

The Sharks are hesitant to complete the deal with Ottawa unless they're able to convince Havlat, who's determined to test the free-agent market, to sign an extension.

The Leafs, meanwhile, gave up on Nabokov and acquired Andrew Raycroft from the Boston Bruins for goaltending prospect Tuukka Rask.

A source said San Jose's asking price for Nabokov was too high.

AROUND THE BOARDS: There are whispers the Senators made a huge pitch to the Florida Panthers for G Roberto Luongo. The word is Ottawa offered Havlat, G Ray Emery, D Chris Phillips and their No. 1 pick (No. 28 overall) to the Panthers for Luongo and D Lukas Krajicek. Panthers GM Mike Keenan, however, was bound and determined to get rugged W Todd Bertuzzi from Vancouver. Ottawa, according to another source, "was never a serious candidate" for Luongo ... The 'Hawks bought out the contract of tough guy Matthew Barnaby yesterday. The Senators could have a mild interest in Barnaby, who played for Muckler in Buffalo ... The Habs are closing in on a three-year deal with G Cristobal Huet that will keep him from testing the free-agent market on July 1.

ON THE FLOOR: The Thrashers cleared some salary yesterday, but still likely won't be able to re-sign C Marc Savard, who is scheduled to become a UFA. Don't be surprised if the Bruins decide to make a pitch for Savard, who also may draw a mild interest from his former club in Calgary ... The Kings offered Dustin Brown, Alexander Frolov and G Mathieu Garon for Nabokov, but San Jose said no deal. Why? The Sharks don't want to trade Nabokov to a team on the West Coast ... After picking up Luongo from Florida, the Canucks are trying to trade G Dan Cloutier. Detroit, Toronto and Ottawa were mentioned as possible suitors. While Cloutier makes $2.2 million (all figures US), he brings plenty of question marks -- especially in his ability to win in the playoffs ... Former Detroit coach Dave Lewis has emerged as one of the frontrunners for the job in Boston. GM Peter Chiarelli has also interviewed former Leafs coach Pat Quinn and Portland AHL coach Kevin Dineen. It's believed Chiarelli wanted a chance to speak with former Canucks coach Marc Crawford, but he was scooped up by the Kings ... Penguins GM Ray Shero rebuffed offers from Carolina and Nashville for the No. 2 pick in yesterday's draft. Shero instead drafted Peterborough C Jordan Staal ... Much of the talk surrounded Edmonton D Chris Pronger, who is being heavily pursued by the Panthers. The problem is the asking price is high. D Jay Bouwmeester would have to be part of any deal and it might make more sense for the Panthers to wait for D Ed Jovanovski, a former Panther, to become a UFA. There were whispers the Rangers and Senators were involved in the discussions over Pronger as well. Oilers GM Kevin Lowe is in no hurry to trade Pronger since the blueliner is under contract and won't be allowed to choose his destination. One rumour had Havlat and Phillips being offered to the Oilers, who have always coveted Phillips ... There was a suggestion here the Sabres are quietly entertaining offers for C Daniel Briere. The popular co-captain of the team is going to be looking for a big raise from the $2.5 million he made last season.


Videos

Photos