The New York Islanders have fielded a number of calls on Thomas Vanek in the past day or so and it's possible the star winger could be dealt by Friday's Olympic roster freeze. Far from certain, but possible, a source close to the situation told ESPN.com Tuesday. Once news got out Monday via Arthur Staple of Newsday that Vanek had rejected a contract offer from the Islanders -- and Vanek's agent, Stephen Bartlett, confirmed to ESPN.com that his client was very likely going to the July 1 UFA market -- Isles GM Garth Snow's phone began to light up. The early word around the league is that the cost to snag Vanek would be a three-asset haul, whether those assets are first-round picks or prospects or a player. It could be any combination. And if one of the assets is high-end enough, perhaps a two-asset package could do it. Reached by ESPN.com Tuesday, all Snow would say is that he valued Vanek's presence on Long Island. "I hope Thomas Vanek retires an Islander," Snow said. "I still hope to re-sign him." Bartlett indicated the Islanders no doubt would be among the options his client would look at come July 1. But in the meantime, Snow has to protect himself, which is why he's fielding trade calls. Among the teams keeping tabs on the Vanek situation are the Los Angeles Kings, although a source Tuesday suggested he might not be their top target. My guess is that would be Matt Moulson, although as reported before, Sam Gagner and Mike Cammalleri are also options for L.A. Still, Vanek is on L.A.'s shopping list to some degree, no question. But whether the interest comes from L.A. or any other contender, the salary cap is an issue for all those teams and Vanek's $5.75 million cap number is large. Which is why his trade could wait until closer to March 5, even if, in a perfect world, the Islanders would like to ship him off by Friday's Olympic freeze.
Rumblings: Will Vanek be moved soon?
ESPN | Feb 5