More Players on the Trading Block
In a recent article here on HTR it mentioned 5 players on the trading block. Those players were Sergei Fedorov, Todd Bertuzzi, Ed Jovanovski, Joe Thornton and Jeremy Roenick.
In fact there are plenty of other guys who could be potentially on the move.
Anaheim – besides Feds, Petr Sykora may draw some interest. He has been a pretty consistent 30 goal man and with good linemates can provide excellent support scoring for the stars. He did that with Elias in Jersey and Kariya in Anaheim. He has a high price tag which could turn off some potential buyers but should draw interest. His style will be helped by the new opened up NHL. A team like the Sabres could be interested as he would be a decent replacement for Satan and they have youth to offer the Ducks.
Dallas – It will be a miracle if any team decides to trade for Bill Guerin. Not because he is a bad player, quite the contrary. THe fact is he is overpaid, due for over $6 million next season even with the rollback in salaries. There is a good chance the Stars will buy him out in order for them to bring back Modano. He will draw interest because he is one of the leagues better power forwards. It is pretty clear he wont play again in Canada. But would a return to Boston be out of the question? The Panthers could be another team that would have interest as he would compliment their soft forwards.
Detroit – The Wings have cap problems and may be looking to move out guys like Curtis Joseph and Derian Hatcher to clear room so they can resign Datysuk and Zetterberg. The Wings could decline the option they have on Cujo and it is possible he could end up back with the Leafs if Toronto buys out Ed Belfour. Hatcher will draw interest. He is an impact player whether in the dressing room or on teh ice dishing out punishment. His contract is huge which will turn teams off but he could draw interest from a team like the Panthers looking for a tough stay at home blueliner. Other teams like the Kings, Thrashers, Flyers, and maybe even the Devils if Stevens retires could use Hatcher’s muscle.
St Louis – Pronger’s price tag will be huge. Much will depend on if the free agency age is lowered. If it stays at 31 he remains a RFA. If it drops to 30 then he will be a UFA. Though he would prefer to remain a Blue, with the sale of the team thanks to big losses, several veterans not being brought back and the money he would command, it is likely Pronger’s career as a Blue is over. There is a big lineup of teams interested. The Kings are the flavour of the month today, while we heard in the past the Leafs, Flyers and Rangers drawing interest. I could see the Panthers getting Pronger because they have tons of young cheap talent to offer and the Keenan-Pronger history.
Edmonton – One of the biggest things on the Oiler’s agenda is to resign Ryan Smyth. But for the last few years his name has come up in trade rumours. With the new CBA the Oil should afford to keep the services of “Moolay” Smyth but if he can land the Oilers a top centre then perhaps Kevin Lowe could be interested. The Habs have always been interested in Smyth’s grit and leadership which their team lacks. Buffalo could use a player like Smyth as they havent had someone like that in their lineup since Mike Peca.
NY Islanders – Speaking of Peca, he seems poised to be moved as the Isles are full of very good checkers but short on scoring. He could net the Isles the scorer they need to play with Yashin. Though the common rumour in the past was the Leafs but Peca will never play on the same team as Tucker. THere are several more logical destinations like perhaps Edmonton (which seems to love trading with the New York based teams). The Oilers need a centre and one who can win faceoffs. he just seems like a Mac T type of player.
Carolina – Jeff O’Neill has been on the block ever since the Canes started losing. pretty much any team could use a 30 goal man like O’Neill. It would be ideal for Carolina to keep him but he could also fetch the Canes a legitimate defenceman. The Leafs have always been interested and I am sure the input from Paul Maurice could influence the buds. Perhaps a package including Tomas Kaberle could bring O’Neill to Toronto. Maybe a team like the Predators who have some quality young defenceman could be interested. The preds need scoring badly if they want to compete in the west. Perhaps a package deal with Vancouver for Bertuzzi could be a good one as well.
PHiladelphia – Besides JR, the Flyers have other veterans who are ripe for the taking. John Leclair will be bought out as his injuries and big contract will draw no interest. But a guy like Amonte could be had as well. I am sure the Hawks would love to bring back JR and Amonte to try to win some fans back. both would work in Boston too as they are local products.
Colorado – The team with the biggest headache on their hands is the Avs. It may be impossible for them to keep all of Sakic, Forsberg, BLake, Foote, Tanguay, Hedjuk, Aebischer and still be under the cap with another 15 players needed to fill the team. Could the Avs conceivably trade Sakic to keep Forsberg? (perhaps bring in Marcus Naslund in the process?). every team would love to get Sakic but how about the Thrashers? There is a history there with Bob Hartley and two superstars who could use a big time centre. And wouldnt a player like Sakic be the guy who could put the Sens over the top?
With so many possibilities it is going to make for a very interesting summer. All 30 teams are going to need to adjust to the new CBA. some will be in better shape than others to take advantage of cap room but if anything is certain, roster turnover will be big league wide.