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Pronger to the Panthers?

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VANCOUVER ? As appreciative as the Edmonton Oilers were for Chris Pronger's contribution to their march to the Stanley Cup Finals, general manager Kevin Lowe is clear that he won't be discounting the defenseman's value to accommodate his trade request.

"When the playoffs ended, in our humble estimation, he could arguably be the best player in the National Hockey League," Lowe said.

Since it became public that Pronger requested a trade for unspecified personal reasons, Lowe said he has received many offers, none of which enticed him to make a deal.

"We aren't going to knee-jerk this," he said. "Perhaps the longer I wait, things might change."

Lowe said Pronger made no request to be dealt to specific teams but did suggest "south of the border might be more interesting."

The immediate presumption was the Florida Panthers would have considerable interest in Pronger because Panthers general manager Mike Keenan is looking for a defenseman and he was with the St. Louis Blues when Pronger developed into a superstar there. Keenan made a big splash the day before the draft by trading goalie Roberto Luongo for Vancouver Canucks forward Todd Bertuzzi in a five-player deal.

But Keenan has said he will look at free agents. If he elects to go after a free agent defenseman, such as the Canucks' Ed Jovanovski, he won't have to give up the young talent he would have to surrender to land Pronger, a 30-minute-a-game player who can intimidate and contribute to offense and defense.

"I'm still almost in disbelief," Lowe said about Pronger's trade request. "When you think about how wonderfully he performed ... he was a model player. He behaved in the best way we could have ever imagined. When people watched him down the stretch, he looked like an Oiler and talked like an Oiler. ... Hopefully he could remain an Oiler. It's really hard to accept."

One plus for Lowe in trying to deal his star is that Pronger still has four years left on a deal paying $6.25 million a year, which is probably less than Pronger could get on the open market today.

The Pronger news seemed to fit the theme of the draft, which had plenty of trade talk and three significant deals.

? The Los Angeles Kings traded Pavol Demitra to the Minnesota Wild, who probably will pair him with fellow Slovak Marian Gaborik. "They played together in Trencin (Slovakia) during the work stoppage and at the world championships, and they know each other pretty well," said Minnesota general manager Doug Risebrough.

The Wild gave up the rights to Patrick O'Sullivan, who scored 47 goals for the American Hockey League's Houston Aeros, plus the 17th pick in the draft.

? The Calgary Flames, one of the league's lowest-scoring playoff teams, took a step toward correcting that when they acquired winger Alex Tanguay from the Colorado Avalanche for defenseman Jordan Leopold and draft picks. Tanguay was a 29-goal scorer this season. "Jordan is a solid defenseman and a very good skater," Colorado GM Francois Giguere said. "(He) has great playmaking abilities at both ends of the ice."

? The Atlanta Thrashers cleared payroll room and picked up a second-line center when they acquired Niko Kapanen from the Dallas Stars for Jaroslav Modry and Patrik Stefan. Kapanen, 27, presumably will move between Marian Hossa and Slava Kozlov.

The Thrashers, who went over the $39 million salary cap with bonuses last season, want to trim payroll. The deal could save them more than $2 million.

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It depends on how much we have to give up. I dont know if we would have enough cap room but we would be pretty good with Jovo and Pronger. I can dream cant I

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UPDATE:

Chris Pronger: Florida Backs Off - 6/25/2006 12:26:06 PM

Update:
The Florida Panthers inquired about Pronger Saturday, but backed off due to Edmonton's proposal, according to the New York Post.

Recommendation:
The rumor mill has it that Edmonton GM Kevin Lowe asked for Jay Bouwmeester, Nathan Horton and Florida's first round pick in the draft (10th overall) in exchange for Pronger. It seems Edmonton is willing to honor the defenseman's trade request, but the asking price will not be cheap. The Rangers, Coyotes and Senators are expected to jump in the sweepstakes, but they should prepare to pony up a steep price to Edmonton in the early stages of trade negotiations. Stay tuned.

More News for Chris Pronger
http://www.rotowire.com/roto_to_gnews.htm?ID=86478&sport=nhl

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This would be another awesome pickup for us. But how much is he asking?

he isnt a free agent, and the Oilers want our entire team aka Horton, Bouwmeister and our 1st round pick

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This would be another awesome pickup for us. But how much is he asking?

he isnt a free agent, and the Oilers want our entire team aka Horton, Bouwmeister and our 1st round pick
Didn't realize his contract was up. Pretty sweet but I wouldn't give up Horton.

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bouwmeister could be that dominate someday in the future. Horton is turning into something that special.

Pronger is amazing and will be for the length of tht contract but that is alot to give up.

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Its Bouwmeester, not Bouwmeister. :)



And Bouwmeester dominated the last month of the season. He had 5 goals and 12 assists out of 24 games in March and May.


I am probably his biggest fan outside of his hometown. :lol

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