The Tampa Bay Lightning are unlikely to make the playoffs again, and Martin St.Louis is a player that is one of the most competitive in the league.
At age 37, he is still one of the league's top scorers, and missing the playoffs again is something that will likely eat at the future Hall of Famer.
The speculation of a potential St.Louis trade started after an article ran in the Tampa Bay Times.
When St. Louis in July 2010 signed a four-year, $22.5 million contract extension, he did so with the notion the organization, under new ownership and management, would move in a positive direction. But after the team reached the Eastern Conference final in 2010-11, it was out of the playoffs in 2011-12 and appears this season it will fall short again.
St. Louis, 37, might look at a team clearly in transition — it is trying to develop Anders Lindback as a No. 1 goaltender and has eight players on its current roster who played last season or have played this season in the AHL — and wonder how much longer he can wait.
It is logical that Tampa would move him given the fact he still has value, and he would garner a nice return that would help complement their needs as a team in transition. St.Louis likely wants another run at the Stanley Cup, and he doesn't want to waste the good years he has left.
There will be no shortage of takers for St.Louis if he asks for a trade, and he will control his destiny with his NTC.
With Guy Boucher no longer behind the bench, St.Louis may be more willing to consider leaving now that the team could be headed in a new direction.