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Moulson unlikely to return to Isles in free agency

Mar 18, 2014, 4:28 PM EDT

mattmoulsonislesgetty Getty Images

Matt Moulson says he enjoyed his time on Long Island and was extremely close to his teammates.

Just don’t expect those feelings to factor into a potential move back to the Islanders.

Moulson, set to become a UFA at season’s end, didn’t sound very keen on the idea of re-joining the club he made his mark as a NHLer with.

“It’s been said that I wasn’t in the future plans, so I don’t think that will quickly change,” he explained, per “I’m just going to concentrate on helping Minnesota to win right now.”

Moulson, 30, spent five years in New York and developed into a quality trigger man alongside John Tavares, scoring 30 goals three times (including a career-high 36 in 2011-12). Signed to a modest three-year, $9.4 million deal in ’11, Moulson has been of the league’s better value signings and could be primed to cash in this summer, which is part of the reason why the Isles dealt him to Buffalo as part of the Thomas Vanek trade.

Reunion-type conversations are the rage right now — similar questions have been asked of Ryan Callahan about a possible return to the Rangers — so it’s not surprising that Moulson’s having them. But, based on his responses to the queries, it’s highly unlikely he’ll be back in the blue, orange and white.

“At the time, I thought I’d be here for the rest of my career,” he said. “We never had discussions about any future plans or anything.

“That kind of caught me off guard.”

  1. jb8588 - Mar 18, 2014 at 4:33 PM

    Tavares was signed to that modest three-year deal? NBC Sports should have a new proof reading policy with the amount of typos & blunders I see on here day in and day out.

    • spezzdispenser - Mar 18, 2014 at 4:53 PM

      get over it

    • islesjb - Mar 18, 2014 at 5:01 PM

      THE OUTRAGE!!!!!

  2. imgoingtowichita - Mar 18, 2014 at 4:48 PM

    When your agent opens at $6M per … (see Ryan Callahan)

  3. cantescapekarma - Mar 18, 2014 at 5:24 PM

    Just one more reason that makes this trade (by Garth, not Darcy) such a horrible move. Moulson has said multiple times that he would have signed with The Isles if presented with that opportunity. He also said that he would sign with Buffalo. I’d be willing to bet that Moulson would sign with Minnesota (before free agency) if they offer him a contract. This guy is a true professional and total class act all the way! Seems like a great guy to have in the locker room too. I am still hoping that he hits free agency and signs with Buffalo though. Come on Matty Mo, come back to Buffalo! We’re going to need to sign lots of players before next season, just to hit the cap floor…

  4. wranglerick - Mar 18, 2014 at 5:51 PM

    Matty Mo is a class act

  5. nicofthenorthstar - Mar 18, 2014 at 6:50 PM

    Wild won’t resign him, word is they’re concerned it would cut into the cash they have reserved to keep Brodziak and Koivu around forever.

    • lordfletcher - Mar 18, 2014 at 8:02 PM

      I am hoping this is sarcasm.

      I believe Fletcher would rather retain Moulson than over pay for Vanek. Vanek is not the player the Wild need, not by a long shot. If Fletcher was to offer ANOTHER top contract, guessing Vanek commands a 6-7 years 40-50+ million deal, it sure better be for something more special than Vanek. Vanek is what he is. A floater who scorers and doesn’t play D. Moulson is a guy who can play a better all around game but may fall 7 goals or so short of Vanek and come at a MUCH cheaper price.

      I think Fletcher tries to shop Koivu this summer, as he has proven to not be worth his value to this club anymore. Haula is out playing him each night and Brodz will not return. With Spezza and Toews potentially becoming free agents next summer I wouldn’t be surprised to see Fletcher plan his next move. Not saying he is targeting either but you never know. I highly doubt Toews leaves but if he hits the free agent market the same time the cap is supposed to go up, he could be in line to receive a massive contract that the Hawks more than likely could not counter. Again, I doubt he leaves, just food for thought.

      Seeing as Snow likes making crazy deals, send Koivu, Coyle, Dumba and this or next years first for JT / Okposso.


      • bcisleman - Mar 18, 2014 at 8:39 PM

        Garth does not make crazy deals and neither of those players will ever be traded…even assuming there was anyone on the Wild he wanted.

      • lordfletcher - Mar 18, 2014 at 8:59 PM

        never? never….
        I would think anyone that has seen Snow in action should not say never

        and dippy do, I highly doubt it would happen also. I wasn’t be serious as for a trade offer because it isn’t realistic for the isles to trade JT under almost any circumstance. Was just making a jab at Snow. DUR!

      • lordfletcher - Mar 18, 2014 at 9:00 PM

        “Garth does not make crazy deals”

        can’t believe I completely overlooked this comment of yours too.

        Are you this blind?

      • strictlythedanks - Mar 18, 2014 at 10:27 PM

        bcisleman, you must be out of your mind. Snow has gotten worked in trades. and thats putting it lightly.

  6. strictlythedanks - Mar 18, 2014 at 7:38 PM

    And he scores

  7. bcisleman - Mar 18, 2014 at 8:37 PM

    Matty’s UFA status had NOTHING to do with the Vanek trade…at least nothing to do with the money he would have demanded. Garth was prepared to give Vanek around $7 mil per and surely Matty wouldn’t have asked anywhere near that much.

    Garth said plainly that he made the trade to shake things up and improve performance. Regarding the top line, he got what he wanted. Kyle is already well past his previous career high and JT was well on his way to a personal best as well. Suspect Isles will move Anders Lee into the top LW spot in the fall.

    • strictlythedanks - Mar 18, 2014 at 10:47 PM

      Moulson, and a 1st, and a 2n for a rental in vanek? sounds like a foolish move to me. The ultimate swing and a miss by a gm who doesn’t know the talent of his own players. Could have kept your picks and traded moulson at the deadline. If i were an isle fan snow would be public enemy #1.

      • imgoingtowichita - Mar 19, 2014 at 8:02 AM

        He thought he could sign him. Gambled and lost, that simple.
        For Isles fans everywhere, as a poster above already commented on Vanek’s compete level, it will end up being a blessing that he turned down the 7yr/$50M.

      • moarjam - Mar 19, 2014 at 10:36 AM

        Wasn’t a bad idea to take the gamble at the time. But it was a gamble. And he lost big time. This is a results business and at the end of the day the RESULT was a terrible mismanagement of assets.

  8. hardkor07mn - Mar 18, 2014 at 11:10 PM

    I don’t care what the wild do, but they better get rid of brodziack, heatley, and stoner. Those 3 are horrendous. I don’t care if they take Koivu with them.

    • strictlythedanks - Mar 19, 2014 at 12:33 AM

      Everyone needs a Stoner on their team

    • lordfletcher - Mar 19, 2014 at 7:49 PM

      as Heaters legs have already retired and Brodz has not played well but his blame lies on Yeo’s shoulders. Yeo should not be playing Brodz on the 3rd line, 4th line with limited minutes is where he currently belongs.

      As for Stoner, he is worth his value and a 6/7 D man. Far from worthless and I am not a fan of his/

  9. c9castine - Mar 19, 2014 at 1:29 AM

    yeah of course why would he be in the future plans?

    experienced player who’s scores goals consistently, knows the coach and the system and has chemistry and friendship with your captain and star, one of the best players in the league…john tavares.

    yep. no reason to wanna keep him around.

  10. jo94past - Mar 19, 2014 at 7:47 PM

    If Moulson can continue to put up points, I think I’d like it if MN offers him a contract rather than Vanek. MM seems like a gritty, hard working forward with a nose for the net and is productive defensively. Vanek seems to be a pure scorer and nothing else. Plus, MM would be cheaper, which could allow more cap space to sign another forward, hard hitting (or offensive) D-Man, or maybe even a goaltender.

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