This could be a wide open NHL trade season

The question might not be whom to select in Friday’s NHL draft, but this: To trade or not to trade?

The combination of a relatively even distribution of talent among the first-round prospects, certain needs for teams selecting at the front end and a new collective-bargaining agreement looming has the potential for some big deals this week and into the weekend, when all 30 general managers will be in Pittsburgh, ostensibly to make their teams deeper through the draft.

Oilers GM Steve Tambellini said this past week he has no plans to trade the No. 1 overall pick, but he listened to offers, a new development from the past two seasons, when Edmonton did not hesitate to make Taylor Hall and then Ryan Nugent-Hopkins the top selections of 2010 and 2011.

Edmonton — like several teams, including the Islanders — has a crying need for help on defense.

So it might be more of a difference-making forward who gets dealt this week. Blue Jackets captain Rick Nash heads the list, having nearly been dealt at the trade deadline, although he still has a no-trade clause to determine where he’ll go.

The Rangers could be the biggest movers this week. Nash, Bobby Ryan and Ryan Getzlaf of the Ducks, and defensemen Shea Weber of the Predators and Tobias Enstrom of the Jets could be targets, with the Rangers using their No. 28 pick and/or some of their deep prospect pool to swing a deal.

Under GM Garth Snow, the Islanders have refused to deal picks and/or young players for established NHLers. This year is no different, although Snow is trying hard to land a defenseman to shore up a thin mix. Only Mark Streit, Travis Hamonic and Andrew MacDonald will be back from the team’s regular 2011-12 defense corps.

A restricted free agent such as the Canadiens’ P.K. Subban would have gotten Snow to strongly consider dealing the fourth overall pick, but new Montreal GM Marc Bergevin isn’t moving Subban, according to those who’ve spoken with him.


17 Responses to This could be a wide open NHL trade season

  1. Ryrad8 says:

    I have heard Subban is cancer in the locker, but as a fan favorite, he is not going anywhere. It would be Bergevin’s head if he was moved, and I don’t think he is willing to take that risk in he’s early gm career.

  2. Schneidfeld says:

    Can’t see any teams management keeping a player who is a “cancer” in the locker room, regardless of fan opinion. Ask Sean Avery lol. I get that some fans like him, but they’re not going to risk team success for any one player. Don’t get me wrong, I’m sure his antic rub some of the other players the wrong way, but at the end of the day, who cares, it’s Montreal lol ; )

  3. TimTheBone says:

    Is he really though…. Or is it media attention and them twisting around situations to create a story… Yeah sure he’s had some scuffles in practice but that happens allll the time….

    I’ve always heard that in every locker room he’s been in hes like the life of the party…

    • reinjosh says:

      Cancer is such an easy word to toss around. The team was 3rd last this year. The media is looking for a scapegoat (still) and a guy that may have rubbed some other guys the wrong way with his attitude gets labelled as a “cancer”. We’ve heard this story before. It’s common. I’d pay no attention to it. When they start winning again, Subban becomes the guy you want on the team, his attitude is infectious.

      • Steven_Leafs0 says:

        maybe cancer is a strong word but name one other player who got into as many fights or scuffles (whatever you want to call it) as Subban has in the last couple years.

        Good players who stir shit up like him have a nasty habit of disappearing, Subban needs to have a better attitude if he doesn’t want to become a bigger liability than he is an asset.

  4. Gambo says:
    For those of you who didn’t see it.

    I was dramatically surprised with these rankings, I honestly have no idea what’s going to happen on draft day.

  5. TimTheBone says:

    I’ve been a fan of reinhart for awhile…. My picks as far as d-men go… Top three (outside of the consensus “niedermeyer” that is Murray)

    In no particular order trouba reinhart dumba…. As far as steady dmen go reinhart is at the top for sure

  6. TimTheBone says:

    So I MAY be right when I said a week or two ago that someone may be getting a couturier like gift in grigorenko…. I think he goes either 5 to the leafs, or three picks later… Anahiem and Minnesota go dmen…. As could Carolina… But I don’t think he slips outta the top ten

  7. nordiques100 says:

    There are reports Harding could re-sign and would like to re-sign in Minnesota.

    That would be good news for the Leafs. If the Wild are comfortable with Hackett/Harding, that could open the door for Backstrom.

    Now, I am not sure if he is the kind of goalie that Allaire likes, but to me, he is the best option.

    -1 year left on his contract at 6 mil.
    -He’s put up great numbers in 6 seasons including a career save percentage of .918
    -His contract does not hinder the long term plans for Reimer and Scrivens in the leafs goal.
    -He will still cost the Leafs something reasonable due to his high cap hit number.
    -He could be a player the Leafs move at the deadline with his expiring contract.

    If it cost Toronto a young player, like Cody Franson and a contract, like say Lombardi, I think it would work.

    I wonder too if, depending on how the draft unfolds, the team could swap picks in this deal as incentive.

    Backstrom could cost the Leafs a bit more assets than Luongo, but, he adds so much more flexibility contractually instead of being saddled 9 years with Luongo.

    • JoelLeafs says:

      Harding was just resigned. Yeah, I like the Backstrom option best too, but I think it’s going to cost more than Franson and Lombardi. Maybe those two and a 2nd rounder, at least. I know it’s only a one year contract, but I feel like he has enough worth that they could find a partner for him. Though, with Tampa Bay getting their guy and no bites for Lu yet, you never know.

    • Schneidfeld says:

      Good thinking. As long as the price wasn’t too steep, all of your points are bang on.

    • blaze says:

      This is fantastic. Backstrom still might not be available as they might want to run with a Backstrom-Harding tandem and let him walk next off season. However if they want to go after Parise and or Suter and get some assets now instead of letting him walk for nothing maybe hey move him.

      The relationship is there, it’s Cliffs boy running it. Give them some decent assets throw another goalie prospect back. Id take Backstrom over Lou in a heartbeat.

      In this little hypathetical who’s left to acquire Lou if TO backs out?? I would absolutely love to watch Gillis squirm. And should he stay this season and play less watch his value go down more who on earth would take him then? What a lovely distraction sideshow in Vancouver. Ah I sure hope so.

  8. mojo19 says:

    If Backstrom is available now Burke has to get him. I think he would be a perfect fit. We would have the option to deal him at the deadline, let him walk, or re-sign him if it makes sense.

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