The Senators suddenly have a logjam in goal and Andrew Hammond could be the odd man out; Dougie Hamilton trade rumors persist.
The Ottawa Senators could part ways with goaltender Andrew Hammond. Sportsnet’s Elliotte Friedman reports the Senators are testing the 28 year old’s market value.
Hammond began the season in his usual role backing up starter Craig Anderson, but was sidelined by a groin injury on Oct. 28. With Anderson’s wife’s recent cancer diagnosis requiring he take some time off, the Senators acquired Mike Condon from the Pittsburgh Penguins to boost their goaltending depth. Condon, 26, looked sharp backstopping the Sens to recent victories over the Vancouver Canucks and Buffalo Sabres.
The Senators could send Hammond to the minors for conditioning. They could also demote Condon, though he’d have to pass through waivers. Judging by Friedman’s report, however, they’re looking at more permanent options.
Salary could play a part in Hammond’s future. He’s earning an annual salary-cap hit of $1.35 million through 2017-18. Condon, however, carries a more affordable $575,000 for this season.
The Philadelphia Flyers, Los Angeles Kings and Boston Bruins are clubs whose goalie depth was tested by injuries this season. One of them could consider Hammond an affordable option. The Senators could use some extra scoring punch, but Hammond won’t fetch that kind of return. They could end up settling for a draft pick.
HAMILTON RUMORS NOT GOING AWAY
Trade speculation regarding Calgary Flames defenseman Dougie Hamilton continues to grow. On Saturday, Sportsnet’s Nick Kypreos reported the Flames aren’t believed to be shopping the 23 year old, but the Arizona Coyotes and Pittsburgh Penguins are two clubs thought to have interest in him.
Kypreos’ colleague Elliotte Friedman, appearing Monday on NHL Network, followed up by claiming he’s heard rumors of Hamilton’s availability going back to the NHL draft in June. However, Flames GM Brad Treliving continues to deny the young blueliner is on the trade block.
Friedman believes there are teams in the market for a defenseman with interest in Hamilton. Despite his struggles, he still has considerable potential. He’s coming off back-to-back 40-plus point performances in 2014-15 and 2015-16.
Hamilton’s recent difficulties, however, hurts his trade value. If the Flames decide to shop him, Friedman believes they’ll want a defenseman with “a bit of bite” in his game.
The Calgary Sun’s Wes Gilbertson reports Hamilton acknowledged seeing Kypreos’ report, but said he’s not paying attention to the speculation. He adds that he enjoys playing in Calgary and wants to help the team out of their current slump.
Hamilton lacks a no-trade clause, giving Treliving plenty of options. However, his $5.75-million annual average value through 2020-21 is a significant stumbling block in getting a deal done. Given the Flames limited cap room, Treliving probably won’t consent to absorbing part of Hamilton’s cap hit.
A dollar-for-dollar deal appears the only solution. However, such moves are rare at this time of year.
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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