Fisher can be dealt

Senator’s no-movement clause expired last season

It’s a “clause” for concern for Mike Fisher.

While there has been confusion as to whether the popular centre has a no-movement clause in his contract, the Ottawa Sun has confirmed the Senators are free to trade him anywhere before the Feb. 28 deadline.

It should be noted the chances are slim the 30-year-old Fisher will be dealt by Senators GM Bryan Murray, but the club’s No. 2 centre no longer has a full no-movement clause.

Fisher’s full no-movement clause expired at the end of the 2010 season.

Under the terms of his deal, he had until the end of the last season’s Stanley Cup final to provide the Senators with a 10-team no-trade list, but it was never submitted.

As late as Wednesday, there were reports indicating Fisher would have to submit a list before a deal could be made. That doesn’t appear to be the case and Fisher maintained he’s not worried about his future.

You would think if Murray did get close to a deal, he would go to Fisher out of respect before making one. Fisher has been solid in the community since arriving here in 1999.

“I haven’t looked at it, to be honest,” Fisher said following practice Thursday.

Murray, who said publicly two weeks ago Fisher doesn’t have a no-movement clause, could be open for business, but the indications are it would take an offer the club can’t refuse.

“Mike doesn’t want to go anywhere. He wants to stay in Ottawa,” said Fisher’s agent, Todd Reynolds. “He loves Ottawa and that’s his preference.”

With a contract that runs through 2012-13 and a cap hit of $4.2 million US, Fisher wants to stay and help the Senators turn things around.

His inconsistency has been part of the problem, but that issue has been team-wide.

“I know I can’t totally control what’s going to happen, so I don’t get overly concerned about it, but I do want to stay here,” said Fisher.

“There’s no question. Going forward, I want to be part of it. I know that we can have a good team here soon. I think I can help the team, for sure.”

There is no question, Fisher could be a valuable commodity if the Senators decide to make a move. It’s more likely, however, that pending unrestricted free agents Chris Phillips and Jarkko Ruutu will be dealt.

If Alex Kovalev, another potential UFA, has a couple of more games like he did against the Red Wings (one goal, two assists) on Wednesday, he could draw some interest on the trade market.

“I really don’t think they’ll trade Mike Fisher,” said a league executive. “They’ll talk about it, but they’ll want a lot in return. Good players are hard to find. You should keep them. You can’t trade everybody.”