NHL Trade Deadline '09: Flop or Flurry?

Anthony BumbacoCorrespondent IMarch 3, 2009

As 3:00 PM, Mar. 4, 2009 approaches very quickly I find myself getting very excited. I am constantly searching on TSN.ca or NHL.com to see if a new trade or trade rumour has been posted. I look to see which big-name player is on the block or which team is a buyer or seller.

Only then did I stop to think, what if there were no trades to take place at all? What if all of this extra coverage by the sporting stations were merely a waste of time, to analyze the trade of say Eric Perrin to Columbus for a sixth-round pick for 23 hours? Is this a possibility? I sure hope not.

The 2008 Trade deadline saw the movement of 44 players and 14 draft picks in a quite busy day for NHL general managers. But is it possible for this years trade deadline to reach such a peak in trades; that's a difficult question.

Of course there are many big named players rumoured to be moved such as Toronto's Tomas Kaberle, Marian Gaborik in Minnesota, Jay Bouwmeester in Florida and even Chris Pronger from Anaheim.

But with the social economy still very much in question, and all factors pointing towards a lowered salary cap, will teams be willing to give up valuable prospects (cheap talent) for a top-line player on a single Stanley Cup run?

Players such as Gary Roberts in Tampa and Miroslav Satan in Pittsburgh find themselves on the waiver wire simply because their respective teams are looking to dump salary.

Players like this would normally command a middle to late round draft pick in order for a team to gain their valuable leadership on a playoff run. However, the factors I have stated have led to a stagnant market and ultimately could see these once key veterans playing in the minors.

So, as I sit on my couch tomorrow hoping that I am not correct and that Pierre McGuire and Bob Mackenzie will over analyze the heaps of trades made until their brains explode, it is still possible that this year's deadline may end up just another afternoon in the NHL.