Panthers angling to move up to No. 1

Except for the ones who detoured through Las Vegas en route to the Twin Cities for Friday’s first day of entry draft, most teams are now settled in, in preparation for the action, so let the rumours begin.

The most intriguing scuttlebutt this morning focuses on the Florida Panthers and their desire to move up from No. 3 to the No. 1 spot in the draft, so they can select Red Deer’s Ryan Nugent-Hopkins. That would mean making a deal with the Edmonton Oilers, who have the top choice right now. Florida’s general manager Dale Tallon rebuilt the Chicago Blackhawks, largely around centre Jonathan Toews, so it’s understandable why a player of Nugent-Hopkins’s pedigree would appeal to him. If Tallon stays where he is, he’ll get a worthwhile consolation prize in Saint John centre Jonathan Huberdeau.

Sources say Florida would be willing to give up a roster player (Stephen Weiss maybe?) in order to make the deal happen.

What would be appealing in the deal for Edmonton? Well, if they truly want Swedish defenceman Adam Larsson anyway because he fills a greater organizational need, it would be a defensible move for Edmonton general manager Steve Tambellini, provided the return is sweet enough.

Tallon stole the show at last year’s entry draft by choosing six times in the top 50, nine times in the top 100 and selecting 13 players overall. Included in that group were the equivalent of five first-rounders, if you count the three they actually took – Erik Gudbranson (Kingston, OHL), Nick Bjugstad (Blaine high school, Minnesota) and Quinton Howden (Moose Jaw, WHL) – plus the two that slipped into the early stages of the second round: John McFarland (Sudbury, OHL), and Alexander Petrovic (Red Deer, D) both of whom were projected to go in the top 30 and slid.

4 Responses to Panthers angling to move up to No. 1

  1. albertateams says:

    Stephen Weiss I doubt gets it done for Edmonton. Edmonton will want Gudbranson or Florida's 1st next year which I would be shocked if Tallon agreed to.

  2. reinjosh says:

    Please don't make a stupid trade Burke. Don't let the Flyers big moves get to you. Please!

  3. reinjosh says:

    Say what you will about the Philly trades, Holmgren has some massive brass balls. Guy is a boss.

    He wants to win and he isn't afraid to make the big move to do it. Pronger trade, now these and going hard after Bryzgalov. I like GM's like him. F*ck the slow moving GM's like Tambelli or Lombardi (although props to him for getting richards). 
  4. KingCanada says:

    I think if Edmonton wants Larsson then they just pick him first overall.  Colorado traded JM Liles today to the Leafs leaving really only Erik Johnson and Kyle Quincey as legit NHL D.  Everyone else is eigther a mediocre prospect or a journeyman.  Colorado WILL take Larsson if Edmonton doesnt.

    If Edmonton makes this trade then they are settling for Huberdeau/Ladeskog

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