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Friday, June 20, 2008

Rumors Are Out Of Control

In just the few days leading up to the NHL Draft, which is generally Trade-O-Rama time, the rumor mill picked up at an epic pace, much in thanks to actual reporters being allowed on the Internet to blog their feelings and their supposed findings.

I say "supposed" because a few of these folks seem to be taking the nod from the infamous Eklund, who a couple years ago created a ridiculous Internet buzz with his blog talking about trade rumors because he supposedly had insiders deep within that would hook him up with information. Of course, when that information seemed to be right less than 1% of the time, that causes a bit of a credibility problem.

This, of course, would not deter Eklund as he now has a new website which you have to pay him money to read his rumors.

And you think I'm joking. Nevermind the awful precedent this has set, it's no wonder guys like Buzz Bissinger get upset at us Water Heater Jockeys in the Basement who don't leave home for anything. Clowns like Eklund make it harder for everyone because they create a stir that isn't actually there and causes idiotic questions to be served up to coaches and general managers that have zero idea where this stuff came from.

Enter Bruce Garrioch from the Ottawa Sun - a supposed actual reporter working for a tabloid-style rag in Canada's Capital City.

Garrioch started the firestorm this week by saying he had it on good authority that the Pittsburgh Penguins were shopping Evgeni Malkin to Los Angeles for a package of players and the #2 overall pick this year. Those players involved? Dustin Brown and Alex Frolov. If there were any inkling of truth to this, this would mean that a deal like this would be EPIC.

Of course when Dean Lombardi, the Kings GM, was asked about this it was all news to him, saying only that he'd received only two offers worth considering for the #2 pick and still opted to pass on them. I don't believe for a second that he would've taken that phony Pittsburgh offer either as Dustin Brown is a stud and Alex Frolov is likewise when he stays healthy.

Garrioch was roasted for causing such nonsense by folks all over the Interweb and he's continued to do nothing but throw crap at the wall to see what sticks or gets him some attention.

Shameful. A guy in his position should actually, you know, take advantage of having access to all these executives and coaches. Instead, he fabricates some rumors to get people talking and in the process ticks everyone off. Let's face it, nothing intrigues folks more than trade rumors - it's an instant conversation starter. Is Player A worth Player B and C? It's great...as long as its founded in some actual truth.

As it is, no one knows what Pittsburgh is actually up to regarding Malkin or Marian Hossa or any of their potential free agents. Hell, it's been rumored for over a week now that Ryan Malone was going to get traded to Columbus so they could have a week to negotiate directly with him. It hasn't happened and it won't happen because Malone already stated that he's going to be an unrestricted free agent.

At least one guy has some sensibility - who would've guessed it would be the player in this case?

As it is, none of the rumors that have come up in the last week have nor will they materialize.

Ray Emery getting traded to St. Louis? Not going to happen now after Emery was waived and bought out by Ottawa. To add to that, the Blues traded for Chris Mason from Nashville for a fourth round pick. Nashville was able to do that because they signed Dan Ellis to a new deal which means that Pekka Rinne will be the new backup for the Predators.

Speaking of the Blues, they dished Jamal Mayers to Toronto for their third round pick. Mayer is not very good nor very worth it and the fact St. Louis got a third rounder for him is stunning.

There's rumors currently swirling that Montreal and Toronto may be hashing out a deal to give Montreal exclusive negotiating rights with Mats Sundin for the next week. This one has to be an Eklund/Garrioch tag team special because there is no way these two teams would work out a deal that would be mutually beneficial - nevermind that it would be a complete PR nightmare to have the Leafs dish Sundin to a hated rival and watch him succeed there.

There's also a story popping up from RDS (for you French-Canadiens) that Anaheim may be shopping Chris Pronger around. Again, I don't buy this for a minute because Anaheim needs him too much and he fits in all too well on that team, like it or not.

All we know for sure now is that Tampa Bay is selecting Steven Stamkos and we'll be here during or after the draft going over anything overly ridiculous that goes down during tonight's First Round.

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