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[Rumour] Sens interested in Havlat


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One quarter of the way through the schedule, the Senators are still trying to find a bona-fide Top 6 forward.

The search has been internal so far, but GM Bryan Murray is also turning over all sorts of stones outside the organization.

Apparently, he's even shown interest in a flash from the past.

According to a source, Murray has talked to the San Jose Sharks about acquiring right winger Martin Havlat. The former Senator recently returned from a pelvis injury and was playing on the team's third line until Friday, when coach Todd McLellan made him a healthy scratch.


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Why anyone would want Havlat at this stage in his career is beyond me. After this season he still has another year at $5 million, maybe Murray thinks Wilson will retain some of the salary. San Jose has been very big on Havlat, when the Sens traded him to Chicago the Sharks wanted him and that time and have been trying to get him ever since.

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I think it's just natural that people are impatient with Booth - the Canucks have needed production now out of the second line for the past two seasons.

But in fairness to him, he's scarcely had much time to get his game back.

Last year - a dozen games without a suitable center - I love Lapierre, but he's not going to bring out the 20-30 goal scorer in Booth.

This year - 13 games between returning from a pair of injuries - not excuses but just reality - again he's being centered by a (quality) depth center, but not really playing the type of situational hockey he needs to score regularly.

Part of that is of course his own fault - aside from the injuries, he doesn't exactly give the impression that he's the most inspiriing linemate in terms of awareness and playing complementary hockey with his linemates.

So it's a difficult crossroads for him - I could understand if the Canucks lost patience and cap dumped him.

Could he turn around and be a 20 goal scorer again? Highly likely - because say what you want about him - he always has solid underlying numbers - and despite having mediocre offensive production again early this year, he's still a +3 with very good underlying numbers playing on the third line...

Usually when not scoring, he's still playing a physical, aggressive game - he's been uninspiring very recently, but he's a guy who is never really a liability - just an overpriced third line player if that's where he falls in this lineup (pretty much the only overpaid asset in the franchise - so perhaps people could let go of a stray million here).

A team with a couple playmaking centers in their top 6 though - like theminister points out (that Ottawa has) - could be a very good fit for Booth.

Santorelli could also prove to be that guy - or Schroeder - if he sticks around.

But as for Ottawa 'needing' a top 6 forward - perhaps the armchair GMs circling around that team are simply too impatient - after all, they have a couple young forwards in Zibanejad and Conacher who may not be lighting it up at the moment, but certainly have that potential. It may just be that people are too antsy - like Kassian and Schroeder - if the young players go a short stretch where they aren't producing like bonefide top 6, the hasty crowd gets vocal. Conacher has 2 goals in 20 games and all of a sudden... Zibanejad has numbers similar to Kassian, and Ottawa all of a sudden is desperate for a top 6 forward.

I don't necessarily buy it - their top 5 is pretty damn good, and having a 6th spot there for your talented young forwards to contend for isn't that bad of a situation imo.

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