Report: Teams Are Asking About Phil Kessel

Like Elliotte Friedman, I’m going to be very careful about reporting this because things could get out of control very quickly.

According to Friedman on this evening’s edition of Saturday Headlines, NHL clubs have already begun reaching out to the Toronto Maple Leafs to ask on the price of their star winger, Phil Kessel.

More past the jump…

At the combine, there were teams and executives apparently asking each other “what do you think of Kessel?”, “what’s your opinion of him?”, “where do you think he’s going in his career?”
From what I understand, teams are starting to call the Toronto Maple Leafs and say “if we’re serious about doing this, what is the price going to be?” I don’t think this is going to happen, if it happens, for another couple of weeks, but I think we’re at the phase now where the serious teams who want to talk about him are going to Toronto and saying “what are we looking at if we want to get this done?”

Huh. That’s strange. I thought Phil Kessel was too expensive and too lazy and too much of a malcontent that no one else in the league wanted to trade for him? Wow, something must have changed, right?

We certainly don’t know yet who has called up the Leafs and inquired on Kessel, but I wouldn’t be surprised if it was one of the five teams that I pegged as potential landing spots. We also don’t know what the asking price for Phil Kessel is, though it sure as hell better beat the “soft deals” that were being offered before the deadline. The guy’s an elite scorer in the prime of his career. Screw your “down year” arguments, you better be ready to cough up your best picks and prospects, boy-o.

You can bet that the media, after hearing this report, will begin working on identifying the interested teams, so stay tuned to TLN and we’ll keep you updated as we learn more.

  • dougie88

    I have been saying in my comments for weeks theat Keseel and his “horrible” contract will have plenty of suitors. With or without Nash on the Market, I have no doubt the team will recoup similar value they traded to Boston and hopefully use the picks to select high end talent.
    Kessel should bring in at minimum (a) 2 x 1st round picks, 2015/16, (b) 1 x 1st, an A prospect and a good young roster player, or something with comparable value.

    Trading the core; Bozak, Lupul, Kadri, and even JVR for picks, prospects and young roster players is the next step in the rebuild however the Leafs need to finalize their deal with Kelly McCrimmon (back up the money dump truck if need be) before the draft. As Babcock says “McCrimmon and Hunter get good players, they can smell them”
    The more I read about his talent and hockey acumen, the more impressed I am.
    He is an extremely important piece of the management team moving forward.

    With the expected trades and influx of draft picks from all rounds both this year and next, the team will be very well represented in the OHL & WHL with Hunter and McCrimmon making the calls.

    I am sure Shanny and Co. have taken steps not to miss out on potential QMJHL and European players after firing the scouting department.

    There is PAIN with a capital “P” coming however after 50 years of mostly futility and dread, which has far outweighed hope and prosperity, I see light at the end of the tunnel. I pray I live long enough to share a “whoop”! with my kids when the Maple Leafs hold “The Parade”

  • dougie88

    Teams better be ready to pay. People seem to think that the Leafs HAVE to move Kessel. I’m pretty sure they’re fine hanging onto him as long as they want. Here’s hoping that the return is astronomical if they do indeed move him!

    • dougie88

      People only consider the astronomical return Boston got, not the fact that the Leafs were crap the following two seasons after aquiring Kessel. We can hope, but not expect that if we pry 2 first round picks from a trade partner, we will be picking 2nd, 9th and 32nd.

    • silentbob

      They do have to move him. That doesn’t mean giving him away to the first team that asks, they need to get the max value for him, but they also can’t wait for an unrealistic return either. They need to judge the market and get the best possible return.

  • dougie88

    I’ll be existed no matter what happens, if he stays we get to watch him play even better with the Babcock era, but if he gets traded we’re going to get major pieces back which is going to be fun.

    But if he does get traded I feel like the asking price has to be a minimum of: top prospect, a good young NHL player (around Rielly/Gardiner age), and a first round pick

  • dougie88

    In exchange for Kessel and 24th pick, Toronto gets Carolina’s 5th overall (Hanifin), and 1st round pick D-man Ryan Murphy , 6’3 center Victor Rask (= 2 1st’s and a roster player), and Carolina’s 2nd round pick ( 35th pick = players still available almost same as 24th: pick = Top-4 Puck-moving D-man 210 pnd Rasmus Andersson, top-4 D-man 6’2 Nicolas Meloche 1.5 PPG super-passer Jeremy Bracco 1.5 PPG super-skilled Anthony Beauvillier, “Russian Lawson Cruise” 6’4 Alexander Dergachyov “Finnish Jagr” 6’2 Roope Hintz, and SEL regular Jens Looke

  • STAN

    The two clubs that need Phil Kessel’s speed, great shot and ‘star’ power are Arizona and Florida.

    Plus, they are perfect for a guy who has lots of on-ice talent, but NONE off the ice.

    He can do a lot of lying around a pool.

  • Gary Empey

    I would like to know what other teams have in mind when they inquire about Kessel’s availability.

    I rather think they are offering to trade a pigs ear for a silk purse.

  • Gary Empey

    Speaking of Auston Matthews

    Arizona’s Auston Matthews, potential No. 1 pick in 2016 draft, might go play in Switzerland and scouts say he ‘can’t go wrong’

    http://news.nationalpost.com/sports/nhl/if-auston-matthews-decides-to-play-in-switzerland-it-wont-impact-chance-of-being-no-1-pick-in-2016-nhl-draft-scouts-say

    Matthews, born Sept. 17, 1997, missed the cut for the 2015 Draft by two days.

    If he signs a professional one year contract to play in europe he will turn 18 in Sept. 2015.

    What stops the Leafs just signing him without waiting for the draft?

    America has some powerful antitrust laws that limits monopolies and restrictions on commerce. Forcing Matthews to go to europe to earn a living could be a violation of the Sherman Act.

    I know the NHL does not wish the US government to look into the way they do business. Everything from the salary cap(a monopoly to reduce to reduce everyone but the 2 or 3 star players earning), NHL draft(forcing 18 year old players to return to junior hockey when they could make a nice living professionally), the monopoly on merchandise, and a host of other dubious ways they do business.

  • Meathead25

    NASHVILLE PREDATORS – If Franson and Santorelli don’t re-sign with Nashville, will Toronto get them back as well as a decent return for Kessel? If he does land there, hopefully we won’t get fleeced.

    NEW YORK ISLANDERS – Are any combinations of Strome, Lee, Dal Colle, Collberg, Ho-Sang, Reinhart, Pulock, or Sorokin worth a Kessel?

    FLORIDA PANTHERS – The one piece of interest for me, personally, in this isn’t going anywhere, apparently, after signing a 1 year deal in mid-April. Sure, I guess with enough players thrown in it MIGHT be worth it, but it’s approaching a “Joe from Burlington” type scenario of Kessel for 9,000 players.

    NEW JERSEY DEVILS – this could be potentially his landing spot, but will they be willing to take Clowe’s salary on as well as any other players? Sure, you unload the $8M for Kessel, but how much will you take on in return?

    SAINT LOUIS BLUES – He would be playing with fellow Team USA members Shattenkirk, Backes, and Oshie, and the players that could potentially be coming back aren’t half bad, but there’s too many wild cards in there.

    Wherever he ends up, I wish him the best, even if it’s still in Toronto.