With just a few days until the February 27 NHL trade deadline, the rumors are flying fast now with no team or player safe from the chatter.
Which Player is Most Likely to Be Traded?
This time of year always has the biggest offensive stars being rumored to jump here or there, but it is the defensemen that fetch the most attention from teams. Everyone is looking to bolster their defensive depth.
With that said, all of the following defenders will not be moved by the deadline.
The Nashville Predators are a small market team that home grows their talent, but the problem is that once the talent grows up, the Predators have a hard time re-signing them. They have time to work out a deal with captain and star defenseman Shea Weber, so they won’t be trading him.
Flyers’ Insider Tim Panaccio told Comcast about the odds of a Weber trade anywhere in the NHL:
Given the two best defensemen aren’t expected to be “in play” until perhaps the NHL Draft – Nashsville’s Shea Weber and Ryan Suter -- it’s unlikely the Flyers make a major deal for a defenseman. Free agency or at the draft is where they have been prone to making major moves in recent years.
Nashville needs to not only show the rest of the NHL, but they need to show their own people, that they are serious about being a contender. That starts by re-signing Weber.
Another huge problem for the Predators is Ryan Suter who is in a very similar situation as Weber. With Nashville’s small checkbook, the team essentially has to re-sign just one of these players, but they don’t know which yet.
Philly.com is reporting about the odds that Nashville will part with Ryan Suter in exchange for pieces from the Flyers organization:
The consensus among us is that Nashville will be hanging onto him, even if they know the odds are not in their favor of re-signing him. If he does decide to trade him, [David] Poile has the market cornered. There are very few defensemen of Suter’s caliber in the league and Nashville has two of them. You have to wonder whether the Predators can continue to trade away their top players for prospects because they can’t afford to pay them.
The idea will be to have both men meet with the organization after the season concludes and if the Predators can’t get a deal done then, they will trade either star’s negotiating rights to a team that is willing to take that risk.
The Calgary Flames are always doing terrible at this point of the season, and the hope is that the team eventually figures out they have to make a move. Trading defender Jay Bouwmeester for Jeff Carter is not the right move.
So the marriage is soon to end if the Blue Jackets can trade him. Oddly, though, it’s the Blue Jackets who seem most intent on the separation. There probably are five or six teams that will be in the market for Carter, including Los Angeles and Calgary, and possibly Toronto…If it’s Calgary, perhaps it’s defenseman Jay Bouwmeester who will be coming to Columbus.
At some point, the Flames have to start the rebuilding process. If the team ever wants to head back to the Stanley Cup Finals, they need to start cutting ties with overpaid players, but not by acquiring other overpaid talent.
Check back for more on the National Hockey League as it comes, and check out Bleacher Report’s NHL Page to get your fill of all things hockey.