While some players are being pulled from their teams’ line-ups in preparation for their trades to other clubs, some players are hoping to stay with their teams — even if those squads are way out of the playoff race.

According to Bruce Garrioch of the Ottawa Sun, defenseman Filip Kuba is among those hoping to stick with an also-ran club, the Ottawa Senators. Garrioch reports that Kuba’s agent and the Sens are negotiating a long-term extension that they hope to finalize before the trade deadline. Kuba currently carries a $3 million cap hit and would obviously be attractive to a number of teams in the market for a rental player on the back end.

MK: I’ve never been a fan of Kuba’s, so if he re-signs and doesn’t even enter the equation for the Boston Bruins or another club, that’s the perfect scenario.

Elsewhere in the division:

•Buffalo winger Maxim Afinogenov says he’s been ready to play for a couple weeks now. But the Sabres continue to sit him, and that might mean a trade is in order.

Jaroslav Halak has emerged as “The Man” in goal for Montreal, and Hall of Famer Red Fisher pays his respects to the netminder.

•The Toronto Maples Leafs scoff at the idea that they’re going to start tanking games. They didn’t do a very good job last night, as they won again and pulled within seven points of a playoff berth.