NHL Trade Deadline: 24 Hours Til Impact
With about 24 hours until the trade deadline, there are still many names on table and even more teams in the hunt. Going into Tuesday night’s action, there are only five teams in the entire National Hockey League that are more than four points out of a playoff spot. Buffalo, Tampa Bay and Florida in the East, while Ryan O’Reilly rivals Calgary and Colorado occupy the West’s cellar.
There was a flurry of activity on Monday, including the then-ninth-place St. Louis Blues investing a first round pick and a couple of longshot prospects in Jay Bouwmeester. Effectively, the Blues now have three #1 defensemen on their roster with their new acquisition plus Alex Pietrangelo and Kevin Shattenkirk.
The Flames have had some interest in goaltender Reto Berra as they continue to collect goaltenders that are playing well outside of North America. It’s believed that the Flames will summon Karri Ramo back into NHL action next season at the least.
Meanwhile, the most predictable move of the deadline also transpired. The Los Angeles Kings reunited Robyn Regehr with Darryl Sutter at the cost of two second round picks.
Tuesday morning, the Carolina Hurricanes exchanged a recent waiver claim (Adam Hall, who was waived again at noon) and a 7th round pick in 2013 for slapshot connoisseur Marc-Andre Bergeron from Tampa Bay.As the days turn to mere hours remaining, here’s the latest on the trade market.
Grinding Sharks left winger Ryane Clowe was a healthy scratch last night against Vancouver. There is certainly a lot of interest in Clowe despite being on pace for a career-low zero goals this year. He’s a good net-front presence, but doesn’t have a ton of natural skill or speed. He’s prone to boneheaded penalties as well. That does sound a lot like Scott Hartnell and naturally the Flyers are very much interested. It is believed they are prepared to sign him to an extension if they do acquire him.
Minnesota, Vancouver, the New York Rangers are in on him as well. Boston and Montreal have shown interest too. The Sharks asking price was up in Iginla territory, but we’ll see what they actually get. Given the amount of interest, I wouldn’t be surprised if he warranted a first round pick and a prospect or a second. Either way, I believe Clowe’s days in San Jose are definitely numbered and there might be a deal well in advance of the 3 pm Eastern deadline on Wednesday.
Dallas Stars right winger Jaromir Jagr will be traded. Boston and Detroit are hot on him right now. Given the Stars prospect pool, the Bruins lead asset, Alexander Khokhlachev, may not be of much interest. Not to mention the Stars shy stance on Russians. The Red Wings might not be willing to pony up the assets to get a rental (UFA for UFA swaps are rare, but the Stars could use a center and Valtteri Filppula might invoke some salivation). They dropped out of the Bouwmeester race because they weren’t willing to surrender their first round pick. Montreal is likely to jump into the Jagr race as well and may well come away with him because of his chemistry with turtleneck enthusiast Tomas Plekanec.
Contract talks between the Islanders and puck-moving defenseman (nee winger) Mark Streit have broken down. There are two sides to this though. The Isles have extended Lubomir Visnovsky (a defenseman of similar traits) so they might be more apt to move him and recover an asset. On the flip side, the Isles are tied for eighth in the East and will look to make a playoff push. For the Islanders, no one spends more time on the ice than captain Streit so it’s a risk vs. reward situation for GM Garth Snow. There will be callers on him certainly. For reference, Visnovsky cost them a 2nd round pick, they would need more than that to think of moving Streit I believe. Chicago might be on the case.
The Toronto Maple Leafs have been granted permission to talk to Miikka Kiprusoff’s agent about his status going forward. It has been suggested that Kiprusoff plans to retire after the season with just one year left on his deal at a paltry $1.5 million. The Leafs have two younger goalies that seem to play in every game and wouldn’t mind solidifying the position heading into the playoffs. New GM Dave Nonis has been attached to the name Roberto Luongo as well.
The Buffalo Sabres have asked Jason Pominville to submit a list of teams that would be acceptable for him to be moved to. The Sabres have had exploratory talks with a couple of clubs regarding their captain. With the Sabres on the verge dynamiting their lineup, big names like Jason Pominville, Ryan Miller and even Thomas Vanek could be on the chopping block. They’ve already moved Jordan Leopold and Robyn Regehr, which has pushed the plunger half way down in advance of the deadline. Winnipeg and Columbus would love to have Pominville certainly, the latter club has three first round picks at their disposal and at least one will be in play. I believe that a team will take a chance on Drew Stafford at the deadline as well.
Out in the desert, a couple of rugged defenders in Derek Morris and Rostislav Klesla are attracting some interest around the league. There are any number of teams that would love to add a tough veteran to their backline, I would think the Coyotes could net a 2nd or 3rd round pick for either of them. The Coyotes have a couple of bottom six forwards that might warrant a third round pick themselves.
Contract talks between Dallas and recently-acquired center Derek Roy are not going well. Similarly, in Washington, Mike Ribeiro and the Caps have been unable to agree to an extension. It seems more likely that Ribeiro will stay in Washington than Roy will stay in Dallas. The Stars would like to get a first round pick for Roy and given the market, that’s in the realm of possibility even if it’s on the high side of the scale. Vancouver, Anaheim and Chicago are hot on his trail.
Two-Line (ok, maybe three-line) Passes:
- Columbus is willing to part with the assets to make a run. They have three first round picks and they have a bunch of young players that could be available including sought after defensemen like John Moore and, even more likely, David Savard. Veteran Adrian Aucoin could be had as well to allow one of these young d-men to penetrate his way into the lineup.
- Carolina has been producing some young puck-movers recently and with Ryan Murphy on the way, Jamie McBain has been put back into play. He’s right-handed and young, so there will be interest. Philadelphia, in particular, has lost a lot of transition defensemen recently and could be interested. The Rangers might be interested as well.
- The New York Rangers have been poking around on the trade market trying to strengthen their team. Marian Gaborik is the headliner that’s drawing some interest but I wouldn’t expect a move before the deadline unless someone really sweetens the pot.
- Brian Boyle has under-performed for much of the year as the third line center and might be added as someone else’s fourth line center. Pittsburgh and Vancouver might have his name in their respective rolodexes. The Rangers are looking to add a puck-moving d-man, one that can make quality stretch passes. There’s a natural connection between Dan Boyle and John Tortorella from the 2004 Stanley Cup run but will the Rangers pony up the assets to make it happen?
- Calgary Flames defenseman Mark Giordano hasn’t really been a great fit for Bob Hartley’s new up-tempo system and he might be a valuable commodity for another club looking for longer term help on the blueline as Giordano is locked up until 2016. The player that best fit the system (Bouwmeester) has already been moved, I can’t imagine what that means for a player that doesn’t fit quite as well.
- With Ladislav Smid signed to an extension, the Oilers might be more inclined to move truculent defensemen Mark Fistric or Theo Peckham. The latter has attracted interest from Philadelphia it is believed. Polar opposite defenseman Ryan Whitney is in play as well, but might not draw enough interest, because of his injury history, to get moved.
- The Colorado Avalanche wouldn’t mind moving a depth defenseman like Ryan O’Byrne or Shane O’Brien to start opening things up for their younger d-men. Though, there’s a lot more interest in the team’s only top-four-caliber defenseman, Erik Johnson. Lots of teams covet him.
- Given the Blues recent acquisitions, I would suspect at least one d-man is on the way out. A late round pick for Kris Russell would not at all shock the hockey world. Great skating base and even a team that isn’t in the playoff hunt might invest a fifth round pick in him.
- Nothing new to report on the Ben Bishop trade front, like most things involving goaltenders, I can’t even hazard a guess on how that this might go down. If a team feels he can be their starter next season, they’ll pay the price for him and get him. Simple as that.
- On waivers today: Steve Montador ( CHI), Rostislav Olesz (CHI), Adam Hall (TB), Cam Barker (VAN), Mike Santorelli (FLA), Kurtis Foster (PHI), Drew MacIntyre (VAN).