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Rumor Roundup: Even with Lindback in the fold, Kings not done looking for goalie help

Anders Lindback is headed to the AHL, and the KIngs’ two NHL goalies are still on the shelf so they may try to acquire a proven starter.

The Los Angeles Kings made a short-term move to boost their injury-plagued goaltending, signing Anders Lindback to a professional tryout offer. The 28-year-old Lindback has some NHL experience, but for now, he joins their AHL affiliate.

Backup Jeff Zatkoff is expected to be sidelined for only a week with a lower-body injury. Starter Jonathan Quick, however, could be out for up to three months. Meanwhile, some pundits continue to speculate over who the Kings could bring in via trade as a short-term replacement for Quick.

Prior to the Kings signing Lindback, Sportsnet’s Luke Fox listed Winnipeg’s Ondrej Pavelec, Anaheim’s Jonathan Bernier, Florida’s Reto Berra, Pittsburgh’s Mike Condon, the New York Islanders’ Thomas Greiss and Philadelphia’s Steve Mason or Michal Neuvirth as possible trade targets.

Other pundits previously linked Pavelec, Bernier, Berra, Condon and Greiss to the Kings. The cap hits of Bernier ($4.15 million) and Pavelec ($3.9 million) means the cap-strapped Kings are unlikely to pursue them. Berra ($1.45 million), Condon ($575,000) and Greiss ($1.5 million) are more affordable options. 

Mason and Neuvirth, however, are new additions to this guessing game. Fox believes Mason’s name appears in trade chatter owing to his $4.1-million cap hit. Like Bernier and Pavelec, his salary isn’t a good fit for the Kings. Neuvirth ($1.6 million) is more affordable, but like Mason, he’s not off to a good start.

When asked by a reader which goalie the Flyers could trade, Philly.com’s Sam Carchidi replied Neuvirth for the right price. However, he also points out Flyers GM Ron Hextall prefers carrying two strong goalies on his roster. If Neuvirth and Mason fail to snap out of their collective early-season funk, Hextall might consider moving one of them.

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With November fast approaching, there’s no sign of an end to the standoff between the Winnipeg Jets and restricted free agent defenseman Jacob Trouba. The 22-year-old remains at home in Michigan hoping Jets GM Kevin Cheveldayoff honors his trade request.

Trouba could be cooling his heels for a while. TSN’s Bob McKenzie last week said there’s no indication the young rearguard is close to being dealt.  His colleague Pierre LeBrun reports Cheveldayoff’s asking price is a young, top-four defenseman with a left-handed shot. He claims the Jets GM can afford to be patient, as he’s got the full backing of team ownership.

The Ottawa Sun’s Bruce Garrioch reports the Detroit Red Wings and Boston Bruins were linked to Trouba in the rumor mill. However, ESPN.com’s Craig Custance doubts the Wings can land him, suggesting Anaheim’s Cam Fowler as a better target. CSNNE.com’s Joe Haggerty doesn’t see Trouba as a fit with the Bruins.

Trouba and the Jets can afford to engage in a staredown for now. But as the Dec. 1 deadline for re-signing restricted free agents nears, one of them could blink. Expect the conjecture over Trouba’s future to increase by mid-November.

Rumor Roundup appears regularly only on thehockeynews.com. Lyle Richardson has been an NHL commentator since 1998 on his website, spectorshockey.net, and is a contributing writer for Eishockey News and The Guardian (P.E.I.).

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