NHL Trade Rumors: Tim Thomas Would Help Potential Suitors Despite His Hiatus
Bruins' GM Peter Chiarelli recently said that the Bruins are exploring trade options involving Thomas, according to the Boston Herald:
I've had a couple of teams, more than a couple (ask about Thomas deals)[...]I've had a category of teams that are inquiring about acquiring him for the cap floor. And I've had a category of teams who inquired about, is he coming back? If you look at it, that would be a $5 million cap hit that a team doesn't have to pay. So yes, on that basis, I think there would be interest.
Although Thomas won't be between the pipes during the 2012-2013 season, he could prove to help the Bruins in another way.
If the Bruins can find a trading partner, the organization would avoid a $5 million cap hit this upcoming season. This was made possible by Thomas waiving his no-trade clause in the wake of his decision to take a hiatus from the sport.
The fact that numerous teams have reached out to the Bruins is a good sign for a prospective swap. As per the above Boston Herald report, teams that need to surpass the salary cap floor would be the ones that are most interested in acquiring Thomas.
The cap floor—the minimum a team can spend in one season—is estimated to be in the neighborhood of $54 million next season. Going by that number, small market teams like the Phoenix Coyotes, Nashville Predators and Winnipeg Jets would be in the hunt for the 38-year-old goaltender.
A small-market team that didn't want to, or couldn't afford to spend $54 million, could add Thomas to its roster, suspend him and thus take the $5 million hit without actually spending a penny.
Based on all the information, it seems like the Bruins will eventually find a landing spot for Thomas. It's funny that a goalie who was once one of the best in the league is now worth more to the Bruins and other teams in terms of his contract than he is on the ice.
When and if the Bruins can unload Thomas, the extra $5 million that wouldn't go towards the cap could be spent in a variety of other places.
What do you think of Tim Thomas taking next season off?
It was a gracious move for the two-time Vezina Trophy winner to waive his no-trade clause, but then again, he did put the Bruins in a precarious position through his unexpected absence.
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